Gabe Suarez: On shotguns, their optimization and tactics of use

In the discussion thread shotguns …

Any weapon is “niche” weapons (weapons for use in certain conditions, in its “niche” – editor’s note). Some niches simply include more uses. Some samples weapons, fancy looking, suitable for applications that are not available to other samples. For example, the M4 pistol layout is illegal in California, unless it is equipped with this stupid ammunition button, muzzle brake and a magazine trimmed to ten cartridges. But shotgun with pistol grip it is completely legal.

Trying to compare one weapon with another (i.e., which is better – a shotgun or rifle) is stupid, since each firearm has its own merits and shines in its niche. This is the same as comparing Corvette with Tahoe – both of them are Chevrolets, but according to tasks, designs and execution belong to different worlds.

What buy a shotgun?

If a shotgun It is considered as a training weapon, assuming that you do not use it besides sports (with its rules), or just conduct trainings with it, which you intend to continue to do, then it can be left without additions and alterations. However, if for you it weapon, on which to rely, then it needs to be improved. It has never been so easy. I didn’t have that luxury a long time ago when Remington 870-nd (Remington) was my main weapon.

Double-barreled shotgun

Side by side – an interesting example of the past, like Colt SAA (Single Action Army). But I would not rely on them for anything more than cowboy postrelushki. Is it possible to kill a person with their help? Of course – like the Ford-T can carry you. If the finances are tight, for God’s sake, get at least a pump from Mossberg (Mossberg).

Smooth shotgun

Saiga (sigh…). Vepr-12 (second breath … we wipe away the tear). Both have such potential that my head is shaking when I type it. Their fate is determined by several points.

  • The first was the inability of the American market to offer quality stores for them, when Russian-made stores became scarce (and the inability to import stores for 8 rounds).
  • The second was the neglect of the “quality” of the American market, which did not see the financial benefits.
  • The third was the cost of reworking them into a combat shotgun, with a higher cost at each stage of refinement.
  • The fourth was the deplorable quality control by the Russians.

Finally, recognizing fundamental changes and not wanting to benefit from them, and wanting to preserve the status quo, the shooting sport forbade smooth-bore carbines with box magazines. if you have Saiga or Wild boar with the right stores, that’s great. Take care of them.

But I look at things further than one day – this weapon has little chance if it does not have a market future in the USA. So what’s left?

Semiautomatic machines and pumps with tubular magazine

I confess that in this class I prefer semi-automatic devices. I have seen very cool guys doing a short lead when reloading (short stroke), and I suspect that this can happen to anyone – and to me too.

However, Glock World shotguns is an Remington 870. It has the greatest market support, along with Remingtons 1100 / 11-87. Mossberg have no less support, but do not have the same quality as Remov.

Challenge if you want, but this is my opinion on the experience of working with both brands for over 25 years. Perspective pursuer – samples Benelli. Complement the list with shotguns from FN (FN).

I really like it Benelli Nova, but the market has little support for it. By this I mean the opportunity to buy parts and accessories from third-party manufacturers. If I break the spring on the 870th, ten minutes at the computer – and I have a replacement in a few days. Not so well with Benelli, even worse with FN.

Personally, I abstain from nameless producers with prices that are too pleasant to be true. Like from various attempts to create bullpap shotgun. As for the Kel-Tech bullpup … think about the same market support as the FN from Benelli Nova. And that is clumsy and unbalanced weapon. Again, if you like yours – to your health, but I will pass by.

Optimize your shotgun with tubular magazine

Okay – this is a completely different thing than refinement. shotgun in case it is used in a specific niche and for nothing more. The initial arrangement in 2005 (eleven years ago!) Was not about what we are discussing here.

Extended Store

The more ammunition, the better. I like the elongated stores, compared with the length of the barrel. I do not think they will unbalance weapon. Most combat shotguns these days are equipped in this way. Personally, I tend to refrain from side cartridge belt, although I tried one, on four cartridges, and he did not create an imbalance.

Plastic butt and handguard

Modern fittings. Now 2014, and, apart from nostalgia, there are no reasons for a wooden forend and butt on the weapon. Magpul covers are excellent and I use them in training. weapons. Not bad to put folding stock, but I did not find the right one, and in the case of 1100 / 11-87 he simply would not get on the weapon.

Tactical Flashlight

Shotgun – mostly melee weapons, CQB, and have a flashlight on it very well. In former times, this meant a module from the Surefire (Surefire), built into the handguard. But returning to the present, you can use a tactical mini-flashlight like Shurfire X300, since it is quite easy to install and remove it.

Weapon belt

If the weapon is used outdoors, it is important to have a belt, and again, based on the development of the market, I lean towards a removable two-point belt. This allows you to get rid of the belt when the situation requires it.


Again – a lot has changed in 2005. If I equipped a combat shotgun today – one that I intend to optimize, not minimize – I would add a red dot sight (RedDot, collimator). Just as is done on modern pistols, with the addition of mechanical sights, etc.

Muzzle tips

With the advent of new low-impulse ammunition, I do not see the need for different muzzle nozzles and systems so popular in previous years. If you want it, then definitely add. Also, a variety of chokes are not so necessary. Manufacturers are learning from the secondary market, and many new trunks come from the factory, with a very good spread. My suggestion is to shoot your shotgun at different distances from 5 to 50 meters in 5-meter increments and figure out what to expect from your barrel. Then you can refer to the nozzles, if necessary. Remember – we need a uniform variation, increasing in size, not necessarily a small variation.

Shotgun can be a great weapon and in the hands of a skilled shooter will show amazing results. But he works in his particular niche and does not compete with other weapons in other niches. Make it so that the battle takes place where your weapon has an advantage – this is the essence tactics.

Gabriel Suarez


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