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20 vs 12, bird hunting, engraving

Discussion in 'Mossberg 590 Shockwave' started by Susie, Nov 15, 2018.

  1. Susie

    Susie .22LR

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    13
    Hi All. I've gone target shooting and pheasant hunting, but the 590 will be my first-ever gun purchase. I've watched some videos and I've been reading some of the posts on this site and other websites. I'd like to hear 590 owners' opinions on 12 vs 20 gauge. Has anyone ever gone bird hunting with a 590? If yes, how did you like it? Has anyone gotten their gun engraved, or is that a bad idea? Thanks, in advance.
  2. MikeD

    MikeD I'm Your Huckleberry Staff Member Global Moderator "Philanthropist"

    Messages:
    11,577
    Welcome to the forum from MI!!

    If you plan on primarily using the gun for wing shooting you would be better served with a 500.

    The 500 is a little lighter, comes with longer barrels, which make the gun swing a little.smoother when wing shooting, and comes with screw in choke tubes which gives it more flexability as a field gun. If you want a ready to hunt gun this is my recommendation.

    That said, you can fit 500 barrels on a 590 receiver but it requires the replacememt of the magazine tube. This is a good option for those that already bave a 590 and want to use it for wing shooting. I did this with my 835. The 590, 500 and 835 can all use the same barrels (12g) if you are willing to swap a few parts.

    The 590 really shines as a home defense shotgun as it was designed to meet military standards.

    As far as a 12g vs 20g, a lot comes down to personal preference. The 20 will have slightly less recoil with some loads but IMHO this is not really noticible until you get into slug/buckshot/magnum shot loads.

    I have both 12g and 20g. I've done a fair amount of field work and skeet shooting with both and feel confident with either. I prefer the 20g when hunting grouse as its a slightly lighter gun.

    Either one will serve you well for pheasant and clays.

    If you will be shooting or hunting with friends, having the same caliber/gauge gun can be usefull if you ever forget your ammo.....yes it does happen on ocasion. LOL

    If you have any more questions feel free to ask. We have people here involved in all types of shooting and we each have different perspectives and preferences.
    Susie and Djcala like this.
  3. Susie

    Susie .22LR

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    13
    Thank you so much for all of this awesome info! I really appreciate you taking the time to write. Have you ever had a gun engraved/personalized?
  4. MikeD

    MikeD I'm Your Huckleberry Staff Member Global Moderator "Philanthropist"

    Messages:
    11,577
    Ive had dust doors on some ARs I build engraved with some custom quotes but never anything fancy on a receiver.

    I am pretty utilitarian with my guns and usually keep them pretty plain in that regard.

    I can appreciate good craftsmanship but just not something I personally have sought out for my guns.
    Susie and John A. like this.
  5. Susie

    Susie .22LR

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    13
    Thank you. I was wondering if engraving would cause any damage/rust, etc.
  6. MikeD

    MikeD I'm Your Huckleberry Staff Member Global Moderator "Philanthropist"

    Messages:
    11,577
    If done properly, no. Mossberg receivers are aluminum so no worries about rust.
    Susie and John A. like this.
  7. Susie

    Susie .22LR

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    13
    Thank you so much.
  8. John A.

    John A. I'm "THAT" guy Staff Member Global Moderator Moderator

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    13,402
    The 500 is a lot less expensive than the 590's.

    The 590's are also a little heavier due to the thicker barrel.

    Mossberg has made over a million 500 shotguns. That isn't by accident.

    12 gauge has more payload, meaning, pellets. Both can have similar velocities and such. The 20 can be made to have less velocity between the two, and thus, less kick since it's a smaller diameter shell for those that could use it. Smaller framed, younger, handicapped, or however you want to look at it.

    12 gauge has a lot more options for shells.

    Those are some of the main differences between the two to help you determine which may suit your needs better.

    Is that your dog in your avatar? If it is, I love it. I used to have a walker that looked a lot like that one. Though a lot more black and tan obviously. His eyes and face looked almost just like that one. He was such a good coon dog. I miss hunting with him.

    Edit to add: Welcome to the forum.
    Susie and MikeD like this.
  9. Ernst

    Ernst .410

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    65
    Susie, welcome to the forum. Just one clarification please given that you've posted on the 590 SHOCKWAVE thread.

    I assume you're looking for a shoulder fired shotgun for bird hunting? While a Shockwave is a great home defense or work gun, bird hunting would certainly be easier with a standard model 500 or 590.

    Both are excellent guns with a multitude of barrel and choke combinations plus takes only a couple of minutes to change barrels. I'd recommend you handle both and see which one is a good fit from both a weight point of view and proper length of pull (lop). LOP is very important for efficient tracking and leading birds.

    12 vs. 20 is a personal choice. I'd prefer 12 gauge for heavy bird hunting like geese and ducks. But 20 gauge is fine with the right loads. As someone has already mentioned recoil probably not an issue with birdshot .

    Again welcome.

    Regards
    Susie likes this.
  10. Bobster

    Bobster .30-06 Supporter

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    1,633
    I had a "Birds Unlimited" 500 that had an engraved receiver from the factory. I think the bolt was engraved, as well.

    BTW, Welcome Aboard, Susie! :)

    PS: I found some pics of the receiver... Model 500AL with 28" barrel

    500al3.jpg
    500al4.jpg
    Susie, John A. and MikeD like this.
  11. John A.

    John A. I'm "THAT" guy Staff Member Global Moderator Moderator

    Messages:
    13,402
    That engraving looks similar to the bird flying scene that was engraved on an old stevens mod 79 pump that I bought for my oldest son the day he was born. Sure doesn't feel like almost 25 years ago now.

    I handed it to him the day that he moved out on his own. He earned it fair and square.
    Susie likes this.
  12. oli700

    oli700 12g Supporter "Philanthropist"

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    9,264
    I've killed more birds in trees with a single shot 20ga than anything .....a single shot 16ga is close second .
    John A. likes this.
  13. John A.

    John A. I'm "THAT" guy Staff Member Global Moderator Moderator

    Messages:
    13,402
    That's not fair bringing a 16 gauge into the conversation.

    It's no secret, I love my 16's. I've often said that I've killed more with my old single shot 16 than I have with everything else I own combined. And it's true.

    But for someone just starting out, with the limited availability of shells, I can't recommend one for a beginner. Even though I think the 16 is about as perfect as it gets for hunting. I will never let go of my old single shot. It's here for the long run.
    oli700 likes this.
  14. 'mamma jamma'

    'mamma jamma' .22LR BANNED

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    14
    Hello Susie, I'm a new member here who joined looking for feedback on the 590 shockwave myself. My research tells me it's the wrong firearm to get for your idea, I'm sure it can be done but aiming towards the sky with that little blaster would not be that comfortable when you set it off. The key to shooting these guns is the technique, pushing it out away from you just about shoulder level and nowhere near your face. And it's not hip shooting either.

    If you set that thing up to take a bird out you may take your teeth out with it. Or bust your nose.

    These firearms are design primarily for close quarters in the home and make a good truck/car blaster.

    To give you some perspective of how powerful the 3 major shotshells are, a .410 bore has twice the energy of a .45 a.c.p. 2x __ a 20 gauge has twice the energy of a .44 magnum 2x ___ a 12 gauge is just about off the charts.

    Did you get all that.

    Take a look at this video for the proper shooting technique with these little blasters.







    Be mindful that if you modify the gun in anyway you no longer have a firearm as classified by the NFA and run the risk of violation which means fine and possible prison but most definitely loss of your gun rights.

    If you put an arm brace on it you lose the true beauty of this firearm, which is compactness in a chambering that within 20 feet with the right load no matter if it's .410 bore, 20 gauge or 12 gauge the threat will be stopped and within 50 feet they will at least know they got blasted.
    (note we said feet not yards)

    I personally have my eyes set on getting the 12 gauge version because I like a little wider patterning, but it will depend if I can get strong enough to handle it as I restart my exercise program as I have some medical issues. The good news is I can run a .357 magnum snubby one handed and from both sides so I have somewhat of an idea how bad the recoil can be.

    But even so that won't compare to how powerful these Shockwave blasters are. I once own a S&W Governor and shooting the .410 bore out of that was an eye opener. It didn't scare me but surprised me at how powerful it was.

    Susie the bottom line to all of this is getting the right tool for the job. If you want a bird gun then get a bird gun.
    The Shockwave is trench warfare, down and dirty, up close and personal.

    Good luck to you. (and be safe)
    Susie and Scoop like this.
  15. oli700

    oli700 12g Supporter "Philanthropist"

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    9,264
    My 1932 Winchester single shot 16 has never ever failed , never left me wanting for more.....I just got more because
  16. oli700

    oli700 12g Supporter "Philanthropist"

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    9,264
    Ive killed a few grouse with a PGO 500 12ga but I was straight using a Isosceles Stance and been shooting 25 years at the time ...never missed . Honestly I didn't realize this was a shockwave post , as stated above not the best choice .
  17. Scoop

    Scoop .30-06

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    1,549
    Susie, mamma has some very good advice for you.
    Let me add: SHOOT BEFORE YOU BUY

    When I bought my wife a shotgun about 7 members of my gun club brought their guns out to the range for her to try. She decided on the 500. But the important thing was she had a chance to handle and operate all of those before she made a choice.

    Find some friends who will help you out. Just about every shooter I know loves to share. Keep us up to date. There is a lot of expertise on this Mossberg forum for you to tap, also. Welcome.
    Susie likes this.
  18. John A.

    John A. I'm "THAT" guy Staff Member Global Moderator Moderator

    Messages:
    13,402
    I think there may be some confusion about which 590 is being referenced.

    The standard 590:

    [​IMG]



    590 Shockwave:
    [​IMG]
    Susie likes this.
  19. Djcala

    Djcala .30-06 Supporter

    Messages:
    1,475
    Welcome enjoy as for questions Mike d, pretty much answered. I've killed enough birds to feed a small country and used every guage imagined. I'm pretty set on 20 anymore but I do break out a 12 for dove shoots only cause IL take all help I can get once they speed up. But honest other than maybe waterfowl with steel I believe ya can do anything with a 20 a 12 will do. Maybe go try a couple at local skeet or clays club. Enjoy
    Susie likes this.
  20. Susie

    Susie .22LR

    Messages:
    13
    Thank you so much for this info. I am listening to all of the responses and I'll make a decision by this Saturday. The dog in my avatar was my best buddy. He passed away 3 years ago and I have yet to get another. I think 2019 will bring me some nice life changes and I will get another dog. "Cracker" (Salty Dog's Cracker Head Open) was a Louisiana Catahoula. He was purely a companion, but this breed excels at sight and scent sports, and search and rescue. They're super smart, clean, and lots of fun!

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