Duckboats.net
Skip to Content


Home : Main Forums : Duck Boat/Hunting Forum :

Shotgun recomendations

(Page 1 of 2)
Quote Reply
Shotgun recomendations
So after 26 years of service I think its time to retire my old 870 special purpose that my dad got me when I graduated high school. Its down to the bare steel so bad that rust is a constant problem that I am facing now. I have considered jsut hitting with rustoleum and calling it good, but it's time for something new. I am thinking about going to a semi auto and know nothing about them. never paid attention because my trusty 870 did the job. Most guys I hunt with have Bennelli's. I freelance hunt in the Pacific NW so that means I am not in a nice blind and often in the mud and saltwater at times.The gun needs to be able to take some abuse. Rarely does it get below freezing but I have hunted in 15F so cold can be an issue but it will always get wet. Other than being reliable in the field I would like to know your thoughts on ease of cleaning and the different finishes that are available now and how well they wear. I am hard on my equipment and I want whatever I get to last another 25 years, Thanks in advance for all the input.
Quote Reply
Re: Shotgun recomendations In reply to
Well, if you don't really want to upgrade to a semiauto you might consider having a gunsmith (or whomever might do it) ceracoat (spelling?) your 870. Basically a dip. You could have it done in most any color and pattern you could conceive of these days. Or have it re-blued.

That said, Benellis you couldn't go wrong with. Berettas. Brownings. Remingtons. I have shot a few really nice Franchis (wish I could remember which models). I have the most experience with the Benellis and they have yet to fail me from duck hunting in fresh and salt and "clean" and muddy locations, to turkey hunting to upland bird hunting to the occasional mammal to include pigs. M1s and M2s are great guns. I think you might want to start with what price point are you willing to pay? that might help you figure out where to start.

You might consider going to a skeet club or something liike that where they rent guns for you to try out. You might be able to try out a number of different semiautos to find ones that might fit the best for you. I shoot some brands better than others. That might be true for you.

Dani
Quote Reply
Re: Shotgun recomendations In reply to
I was in the same situation with a Mossy 500 and it was so basic and simple that when the Autoloader 935 came out, I figured I'd stick with it. The gun gets no respect at all but I love it. Low tech, really nice swing, easy operation, easy to clean and pretty light. The gun took some criticism for being fussy with 2.75 light loads. I found the gun needed a good cleaning out of the box, then it's been and delight ever since. Being that you are out front about abusing it, the price might help make that decision. I love mine.
Quote Reply
Re: Shotgun recomendations In reply to
I'm a big fan of 870's and for waterfowl you will usually always find me with my old Special Purpose. If conditions are bad I will have the 870 for sure. I agree with Dani about redoing your 870.

If you decide you must have a new semiautomatic my choice currently would be a Beretta. I am a fan of gas operated guns because they are soft shooters. Recoil is not usually an issue while hunting but if you want to shoot any clays in the off season, a gas operated semiauto is nice. I'd look at the Beretta A300 Ultima for a less expensive gun and one of the A400 models for a more expensive semiauto.


Why get a low profile boat and put a high profile blind on it?
Quote Reply
Re: Shotgun recomendations In reply to
I bought my Berretta 390 from Walmart back in 2004 and the only time it ever failed me was once when i fed it old an shell with a corroded base.
Other than that its been amazing. its the best $526 I ever spent on hunting gear.
I don't know if Walmart still sells them.


Carl
Mobile, AL
DHBP Member since 1998

"Life is too short to drink bad beer."
Disclaimer: This post and/or report is not a substantiation of or reflection on the true accuracy of the present surveying methods. It is only a report on or comment concerning local observation and/or results. Your results and observation may vary based on your location, local water conditions, food supply, weather conditions and migratory patterns "
Quote Reply
Re: Shotgun recomendations In reply to
I have a Bennelli Vinci. It was the first new shotgun I had bought in at east 25 years, mostly I bought used guns before, including an A-5, a Winchester Model 12, Ithaca Model 37, a coupe of others. The Vinci is a great gun. It is very easy to take down and clean, it has been reliable. I shoot it for both waterfowl and trap, so put a few thousand rounds per year through it. I hunt in tidal marshes famous for mud. There are many nice semi-auto's out there, most of them are good, then it gets to personal preference and feel. Hope you find what you're looking for.
Quote Reply
Re: Shotgun recomendations In reply to
I have 2 Remington 870-s that have been handed down my grandsons . I am gunning with a Benelli SBE2 and it has similar feel and point as the 870. The Benelli Nova is same stock configuration for more reasonable price.
Quote Reply
Re: Shotgun recomendations In reply to
Neal~


My Model 12 was built in 1925. I fully expect to shoot ducks with it during its Centennial year. It is nickel steel so does not rust like most guns of its era.



My Dad shot a Winchester Model 50 on salt water; it was made in '54. He gave up trying to keep it blued and had me camouflage it (duckboat and decoy paints). My paint has developed its own patina since the early 70s. I still shoot it occasionally as a tribute to my Dad.







So, if your 870 still performs well, I'd be tempted to degrease it carefully and spray it will Rustoleum - no camo pattern, just a nice olive drab.


In any event, I hope you always have along a gun that becomes a part of you!


SJS


Steven Jay Sanford
Pencil Brook Farm
South Cambridge, NY
http://www.stevenjaysanford.com


Last edited by:

Steve Sanford: Feb 4, 2022, 4:40 PM
Quote Reply
Re: Shotgun recomendations In reply to
Kind of like asking what kind of oil you run?

I have had my Benelli M1 Super 90 (since replaced with the M2) for well so long I can't recall how long its been. I prefer the recoil system of the Benelli's to eject and load shells over the gas system other manufacturers use (personal preference, others may prefer gas). I can take it down in the field with no tools other than what is on the gun itself. No O-rings to worry about, no gas chambers to keep clean. Has frozen on me one time and it was my fault. Also had one other issue in the field that was readily fixed.

I hear the new Benelli Super Black Eagle has a new coating on it that prevents rusting. Metal deposition vapor coating or something. Only read about it, heard nothing about it personally.

Good luck in your decision.
Quote Reply
Re: Shotgun recomendations In reply to
Neal,

I could have written this post 2 years ago. I have shot Remington's my entire life. Owned an 870 Special Purpose that was worked hard and worn out. Two years ago I purchased a Remington Versa Max and absolutely love it. However, I have to admit, the vintage 1100 gets a lot of work as well. Good luck with your search.

RVZ
Quote Reply
Re: Shotgun recomendations In reply to
There are lots of good points in the comments above.

FWIW I shot a Browning Gold Hunter 3 1/2" until it turned into a single shot in freezing temperatures on a guided hunt on the Potomac. Guide recommended Benellis and I picked up a Super Vinci 3 1/2" a little later. I liked the synthetic receiver and simple takedown but after two episodes of the 'Benelli click' I lost confidence in the gun. (I understand this is no longer a risk with some of the newer Benelli designs). Decided to replace it with a Browning Cynergy Camo 3 1/2" so I would would have at least two shots I could count upon. Still have the Gold as a back-up gun to the Cynergy since it uses the same choke tube system, Invector Plus..
I am not trying to sway you towards an O/U, merely pointing out that there are some things to watch for on semis.

BTW I am happy to hear you and others mention the 870 SP. I hunted at few times at Remington Farms back in the 90's and while the guests were issued shiny 1100 autos as loaner guns, the guides all carried 870 SPs, with the flat black Parkerized finish and the 'Old School' brown camo slings. I thought they were the best looking waterfowl guns ever and would have bought one on the spot if it was allowed. Never came across any up here in Canada. If you really like your 870 you could have it Cerakoted in matte black to bring it back to its original stealth appearance......
Quote Reply
Re: Shotgun recomendations In reply to
Neil, I hunt the lower Columbia and a few places on the salt to the north and south of there, so many of the same areas. My go to guns there are a spray painted 870 sp and a Benelli M2. I shoot both just as well as the other. Both with factory modified chokes. Both have fired thousands of rounds and been through everything that Oregon and Washington has to offer in terms of rain, mud, sand, more rain and cold weather. Both are reliable workhorses. The only real difference is the action, if you can pump the 870 then I don't see any real reason to change. Mine has has spray paint and camo adhesive sheets on it. I carry it as a backup in case the M2 goes down. Some days it gets hunted just because it was in reach first. I know people have had to replace the recoil spring in their Benellis. With harsh conditions and less than every trip cleaning I would expect that the 870 would be more reliable. My $0.02.
Quote Reply
Re: Shotgun recomendations In reply to
Nothing beat Beretta A400 Extreme plus ... barely any recoil.
Quote Reply
Re: Shotgun recomendations In reply to
Lot of good advice here...

Have your 870 dipped or ceracoated and get a Benelli.

My original HK Benelli SBE is as old as your 870 and I've never considered an "upgrade" in all those years and it still looks pretty good with years of saltwater use, I guess I've been lucky that way.
Quote Reply
Re: Shotgun recomendations In reply to
In conditions you describe a good old pump gun is hard to beat especially from the low maint. perspective. I,d get that 870 ceracoated and keep right on with it. If you just want another option that doesn,t require quite as much maint. as others a Benelli M2 is hard to beat in my opinion. And the Benelli click you here about is usually caused by bumping buttstock on ground hard and knocking gun out of battery. Just don,t do that, its that simple. I,ve shot my M2 in and out of blinds since their introduction and never a click. Shot an SBE1 prior to that and never a click. Still take my old Wingmaster out occasionally that i,ve had since late 70,s and it still kills em just as dead as the others. Recoil operated shotguns are just a bit easier to maintain than gas guns but of course have a bit more recoil .
Quote Reply
Re: Shotgun recomendations In reply to
I have hunted around lots of Benellis in the last 30 years. In all kinds of conditions. I have seen the Benelli click one time in a layout blind. I consider the Benelli click and the Remington O rings to be non-issues. In my experience the people telling those tales have very limited knowledge of guns they are bad mouthing.


Why get a low profile boat and put a high profile blind on it?
Quote Reply
Re: Shotgun recomendations In reply to
One thing to note though about Benelli's black finished guns. In my experience that black finish they use has a tendency to rust rather quickly if not wiped down with some gun oil ( Breakfree or similar) after salt exposure. Dipped guns I haven,t seen that issue. Of course now they make those cerakoted also I believe.
Quote Reply
Re: Shotgun recomendations In reply to
 
"TRIED AND TRUE Remington's 870 pump first hit the market in 1949. This firearm has since become the best-selling shotgun of all time."

870 MAKE OVER story & photography By Ron Spomer. Page 66, DU Magazine March/April 2001.


This article goes into great detail about a total redo of a rusty old 870.

If ya like yer pump gun very much, stick with it, and add a auto to yer tool kit if ya so desire.

"Rust Never Sleeps" - Neil Young











"Art does not reproduce what is visible - but makes things visible." ~ Paul Klee, artist, 1920
Quote Reply
Re: Shotgun recomendations In reply to
I would look at RETAY. Really well built patterns well, and they have done away with the Benneli click.
Quote Reply
Re: Shotgun recomendations In reply to
 This year is my 1st year hunting with a Beretta A400 Xtreme Plus. Absolutely fantastic gun. I also bought a Wicked Wings edition of the Browning Cynergy. I only used it once in the field, but shot many rounds of skeet with it. I would highly recommend either gun. My previous gun was a DU edition of the Winchester SX4, which I only have good things to say about.
I must confess that I'm a gun nut, not in treatment. I'm not buying another waterfowl gun for a long time, I swear!





Oxford, CT
Quote Reply
Re: Shotgun recomendations In reply to
Thank you all for the suggestions. I was totally unaware of Cerakote as an option and think that is the route I am going to go. I just like my 870 to much to let it go. I have found several gunsmiths in the Vancouver/Portland area that do it. Now it's just a matter of choosing who to take it to. I have some friends who are "gun nuts" that know nothing of waterfowling but should be able to give some good advice on a local gunsmith. In my short search I did notice that some gunsmiths were certified for Cerakote and some were not so that should help to narrow the choices.
Quote Reply
Re: Shotgun recomendations In reply to
I have an older Benelli SBE which has served me well for over 20 years, of course it was half the price then compared todays market. Currently I am shooting older guns Smith & Wesson 1000 and 3000 Waterfowlers from the mid 80's I just love the way they look with the parkerized barrels, oil finished stocks etc. I purchased a Mossberg 930 for a bad weather muddy field fun and I must say it has been extremely reliable and shoots to the point of aim. The new 940 is even better and they are reasonably priced.
Quote Reply
Re: Shotgun recomendations In reply to
I bought a Mossberg 930 about 5 years ago and retired my 12 gauge Rem 1100 to be a Safe Queen (with occasional freshwater hunts). That Mossberg 930 performed flawlessly with minimal care and I don't feel bad (given its low cost) when it suffers abuse from mud and water (Fresh or Salt). And to my knowledge it is Made in America! Only problem I ever had (discovered when I first used it) is that SuperX Steel loads have an occasional Fail to Fire (Primer depth is different?) but I have no problem with Kent, Rio, Federal, Monarch, Remington and others.
Quote Reply
Re: Shotgun recomendations In reply to
Ducks Unlimited ran a story a few years back about rehabbing an 870. Replacing a few springs, a machined ejector, ceracote etc. I did all of the mods I was comfortable doing on my own on my 870 and did my own camo job over rustoleum primer. It's held up well, but is starting to chip some paint back to the primer. I'll probably blast it and spray it with brownells aluma-hyde this summer.

.........................................
Recovering Engineer, Standup Philosopher, Aspiring Pirate, Cooking Enthusiast
"Life is a garden.... Dig It!"
Quote Reply
Re: Shotgun recomendations In reply to
Charles,

I had to replace the ejector a few years ago which is why I am also thinking it may not be a bad idea to replace some other parts as well while I am at it. I am comfortable doing the mechanical work and considered Rustolium as an option but I think I am going to go with the Cerekote by a professional. I don't really have the meas or know how to prep the metal properly. Especially since it has been drenched in WD-40 for so many years. I did find the DU article which will help. Heck, I might even replace the original choke that has been in there for 25 years. One thing for sure, I have decided that I am going to keep the 870. not ready to give it up yet. I have until October so I am in no rush and have to do all the honey do's that I didn't do during duck season first!