April 8, 2010

Mossberg .410 Cruiser No. 50455-3, $305

Despite its wide appeal, the 12-gauge shotgun and the recoil it produces are not for everybody. But we think we’ve found a shotgun that is—the Mossberg 410 Cruiser (No. 50455-3). This is $305, easy-to-handle pump-action .410 shotgun with pistol grip is a versatile self-defense alternative to a light rifle or handgun. While also available with full synthetic stock for firing from the shoulder (dubbed the HS Home Security .41, No. 50359-4) the Cruiser model is compact enough to fit inside the door pocket of some larger pickup trucks. Both models will handle .410 cartridges up to 3 inches long.

The Cruiser comes with the safety mounted atop the receiver just like on full-sized Mossbergs shotguns. The only difference in controls is that the slide release is tucked away on the left side, so operating it is less handy than on the 12-gauge Model 500 we tested previously.

We’re impressed with the Cruiser because it compares favorably to other guns used for the same situations. What other weapon priced under $300 produces 600+ foot-pounds of muzzle energy but shoots like a .22? To match this in a handgun, for example, you have to live with the recoil of a .41 Magnum or 10 millimeter revolver, much more expensive options than the Cruiser.

Gun Tests March 2001

Courtesy, Gun Tests

The Mossberg Cruiser is a powerful but compact self-defense gun when loaded with slugs or buckshot. This handy weapon is inexpensive, easy to use, and gentle on the user.

How did the .410 Cruiser shoot? We patterned three different buckshot loads at 7, 10, and 20 yards. Patterns of 2.5- and 3-inch birdshot were also printed, but only at a distance of 7 yards. We also fired slugs off of a rest at 50 yards just like we did with the booming 12-gauge shotguns. In every case we the recoil barely got our attention and handling was simple.

Variation in slug-group size at 50 yards was only 2.7 to 4.3 inches. We’ve not been able to do this well with most of the handguns we test at any price.

Mossberg’s design, which includes a top mounted safety and lined top strap were the keys to accuracy. We could pick out the top of the bead at 6 o’clock on our target and use the screw head of the safety to line up the shot. Striations atop the receiver were referenced for fine tuning the alignment. At this point the only thing that could go wrong would be trigger control, but with the Cruiser’s smooth 6-pound trigger, that wasn’t a problem.

The 3-inch birdshot from Federal produced a more intense pattern than the 2.5-inch Remington cartridge, but only slightly more evenly. Either round would be a good choice for dispatching garden-variety varmints, but for self-defense buckshot or slugs are the way to go. Patterns out to 10 yards with the buckshot were tight and would be very effective. At 20 yards the 3-inch Sellier & Bellot round held the tightest pattern, a 7.8-inch hole.

Gun Tests Recommends

If you want to get away from hard-shooting handguns, and a short-barreled rifle isn’t the right choice for you, the .410 Mossberg Cruiser is a handy defensive alternative worth buying.

Comments (17)

I just purchased a Mossberg 50455. I haven't fired it yet, but it looks like it will work very well for varmints and home defense. I have a bunch of .410 shells, so I mine as well buy a gun to shoot them. LOL

Posted by: gunaholic | November 18, 2010 11:53 PM    Report this comment

A .410 bore is a weapon for a small lady or child. As for me, looking down the bore of a 12 ga. will probably scare the cr_p out of most invaders.The sound of working the action on a pump will get rid of most invaders.I prefer a 12 ga. pump loaded with either 3 in. #1 buck(contains 24 pellets apprx .30 caliber - hit them with half of this and your story will be the truth).The same is true of #4 buck - more and smaller pellets.Unlike some hand gun bullets(not the round - only the bullets) may fill with thicker clothing and not penetrate or expand as expected.

Posted by: BG | May 24, 2010 11:07 AM    Report this comment

Sounds too good...but then who knows...I have a single shot .410 hand gun and this would fill in where more was needed...

Posted by: Fred F | April 14, 2010 6:25 PM    Report this comment

With ZOG coming and the FEMA camps ready to roll this baby looks good for tackling anything heblandinsecurity will throw at you. Patriot Act 2 and our Kenyan Dictator could never hold a candle to a well armed people's militia.

Charlton Heston for President and call your useless Congress person today because they really are ready to flush your 2nd Amendement Rights.

Posted by: talmudHater | April 12, 2010 1:59 AM    Report this comment

I have a 410 Snake Charmer that I've had for over 40 years, and it's never let me down. Great gun, if you only want one shot. So, I'm going to look into this as one my wife can handle.

Posted by: Old Sarge | April 9, 2010 7:53 PM    Report this comment

Looks to be a nice home defense gun !

Posted by: ROBERT U | April 9, 2010 6:55 AM    Report this comment

Been trying to deside what to buy next and this just fills the bill, had one years ago and loved it.

Posted by: firstsoldier | April 8, 2010 11:48 PM    Report this comment

Very poor report. No specs at all. Number of rounds, length overall, weight or barrel length. We need the other half of the report to make a decision.

Posted by: nimrod666 | April 8, 2010 9:25 PM    Report this comment

The magazine holds five 2.5" and four 3". The magazine loads easy. No worming the shell to load. Barrel is 18" to the receiver. Overall is 28.5". Weight is about 4.5lbs empty. Hope thet helps. Wish I could find another one for $82.50 but those days are gone.

Posted by: Plumberman | April 8, 2010 9:20 PM    Report this comment

Could one of you who owns one please tell us the capacity???

Posted by: William P | April 8, 2010 8:35 PM    Report this comment

I've owned one since 1984. I call it my house mouse. It functions perfect even under stress. I'll also tell you that 4's at close range will penetrate auto doors. I have staked my life on this handy shotgun. Don't be fooled that a .410 is not capable. I too was impressed with the slugs. Everyone who has fired it has bought one or wants one. Plain fun to shoot. This Mossberg works.

Posted by: Plumberman | April 8, 2010 5:45 PM    Report this comment

No fan of any handgrip long gun. .410 is a plus for any new or recoil sensitive shooter. i recommend it for home defense, that "clack-clack" sends the same message.

Posted by: rat907 | April 8, 2010 5:11 PM    Report this comment

as a kid, I had a hand me down .410 bolt action .410, and blasted a lot of pigeons, ground hogs, muskrats, quail, doves, etc. Plenty of power! My wife needs this gun! I like the Taurus Circuit Judge!

Posted by: longarm45 | April 8, 2010 3:25 PM    Report this comment

Maybe we should have a list of those 10mm revolvers.

Posted by: Mister E | April 8, 2010 2:48 PM    Report this comment

i'm glad you guys liked it. i wouldn't prop a window open with a mossberg, but a lotta folks like 'em, and i've seen 'em knock birds down. i've also seen 'em in service in the sandbox. so, i guess they're relatively reliable.

they're just not my cup of tea.


Posted by: TOM GARRETT | April 8, 2010 2:26 PM    Report this comment

Looks to be a nice home defense gun !

Posted by: ROBERT U | April 8, 2010 2:13 PM    Report this comment

Mossberg .410 Cruiser...What is the weight...capacity...bbl length...and overall length?

Posted by: billusher | April 8, 2010 2:08 PM    Report this comment

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