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Predator Hunting

Mossberg 940 Pro Waterfowl – Comprehensive Field Test & Review

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Product Review, Field Test & Photos by Tony Martins

According to industry statistics, about 80% of all shotgun shell sales to consumers occur in the month of August. This may be hard to believe for some, as shotgun target shooting continues year-round. For hunters however, the reason is likely obvious – September 1st marks the traditional opening date for the first bird hunting seasons in North America. Starting with doves, hunters like to stock up for these birds that seemingly were born to make you miss! And, this is the best time to buy ammo for later upland, waterfowl, and turkey seasons, while retail shell stocks are at their annual peak. It’s also an excellent time to purchase a new shotgun.

Most shotgun reviews are written after a single range session or hunt, but the great folks at Mossberg allowed me to use their award winning 940 Pro Waterfowl shotgun for a full six months! After burning a considerable amount of powder from a wide variety of loadings earlier this year, I can make the following assessment: This is a waterfowl whacking, pheasant flattening, turkey thumping, predator pounding, clay crushing, do-it-all shotgun! And, the 940 Pro does it all at about half the cost of other autoloading models that have comparable features and performance. If a new shotgun purchase might be in your future, this all-weather masterpiece of versatility is one that should receive serious consideration.

Mossberg 940 pro

When I was first introduced to the Mossberg 940 Pro Waterfowl model – on a sea duck hunt in Maine in December, 2022 – it had been in production for just over a year. It was created as a line extension of the flagship 940 JM Pro competition model, introduced a year earlier. This all new, gas-operated semiauto shotgun was intended to improve on Mossberg’s highly successful 930 platform, with design input from two renowned competitive shooters: the legend Jerry Miculek, and his daughter Lena. To date, the line has expanded to include five specialized 12-gauge models in 11 variations. In essence, the Pro Waterfowl, Pro Field, and Pro Turkey 940 models bring all the speed and handling features of this ready-to-run, out-of-the-box, competition shotgun to hunters, with additional specialized features for hunting.

940 pro shotguns

Features & Functionality

The heart of a shotgun is its action, and the redesigned gas-operated system is probably the most important feature of the 940 platform. As might be expected when the man with the fastest trigger finger in competitive shooting gets involved with design, the 940’s action cycles fast – as fast as humanly possible to pull the trigger! In fact, even an amateur like myself can fire all three cartridges from the Waterfowl model (with “plugged” magazine, mandatory for waterfowl hunting) before the first empty hull hits the ground. And, those empties land at considerable distance from the shooter. Obviously, trigger reset is quick, and the stainless-steel system return spring is stout.

940 pro waterfowl

Fouling from shotshell residue can impact reliability, and this is the reason that many autoloader fans favor recoil-operated over gas-operated actions. Mossberg’s new Gas-vent system is comparatively clean-running, providing a major benefit. The redesigned, self-cleaning gas piston directs ignition gasses and debris away from the magazine tube, with the aid of an ingenious new perforated, anodized aluminum spacer (sleeve). Design engineers claim this system allows as many as 1,500 rounds to be fired between cleanings (more on this later)! Cleaning is further facilitated by a hard, smooth coating of boron nitride on many key components – gas piston, gas ring, hammer and sear, return spring plunger and tube, as well as the steel portion of the magazine tube connected to the receiver. This area is one of the most difficult to properly clean in autoloaders. A chrome-lined barrel and chamber, and Cerakote finish on all external metal, round out the cleanliness-friendly features.

mossberg semi auto

Fit of the shotgun to the shooter is arguably the most important factor for accuracy. [Note: You can argue this point with me, but you will lose!]  Proper stock fit adds comfort, lessens felt recoil, and helps to ensure that the shooter will be looking where the gun is pointing when shouldered properly. Born as a competition gun, the 940 platform boasts a high level of stock adjustability – both horizontal and vertical – not often found in hunting shotguns like the Mossberg 940 Pro Waterfowl model. Cast (horizontal) is one such adjustment, achieved using spacers supplied with the gun. Vertical rise or drop at the heel (DAH) can be adjusted from a 3/8-inch rise, to a 1/4-inch drop. And, length-of-pull (LOP) is also adjustable from 13 to 14-1/4 inches, using 1/4 and 1/2-inch spacers. Adjustments are relatively simple and outlined in the manual, which can eliminate the need to engage a professional gunsmith.

mossberg 940 stock

Features that facilitate loading speed are paramount for competitive shooters, and not unimportant to bird hunters that can find themselves in the middle of some fast and furious action. Mossberg engineers claim the 940 JM Pro competition model is “3-Gun ready,” and, “… the first shotgun that can be quad-loaded right out-of-the-box.” Central to these claims, and shared by all 940 Pro models, is an enlarged, beveled loading port. For the hunter, this facilitates loading with gloved hands, while the longish shell elevator minimizes the dreaded thumb pinch between elevator and magazine terminus when loading individual shells. A bright red anodized magazine follower helps to identify that the magazine is empty.

mossberg waterfowl

Control features that benefit hunters include an oversize bolt handle and large bolt release button, which also serves to release shells from the magazine tube. Depress the loading gate while lifting the front edge of the keyhole-shaped release button and voila, a shell backs out of the magazine. This is a great feature for quickly changing loads, as I often do while waterfowl hunting, without cycling every shell through the chamber. The trigger breaks crisply, at just under 5-pounds. Over-travel can be adjusted with a screw at the back of the trigger guard, which is oversized for clearance with a gloved trigger finger – although not quite large enough for heavy, Gore-Tex lined winter gloves. A silver button pops out at the front of the trigger guard to indicate the bolt is cocked. The push-pull safety is tang-mounted, and easy to operate through gloves.

mossberg 940 waterfowl

The Mossberg 940 Pro Waterfowl is delivered with a 28-inch, chrome-lined, ventilated-rib barrel, finished in “Patriot Brown” Cerakote. Threaded for choke tubes, 3 are provided. Mossberg’s X-Factor Extended tube is angle ported to produce better patterns and reduce muzzle lift, and the extended design makes it easy to remove in the absence of a choke tube wrench (also provided). Two flush-mount chokes (improved cylinder and full) are included with the gun. A HIVIZ Tri-Comp fiber optic sight, with interchangeable LitePipe beads, adorns the muzzle end of the barrel. Additional LitePipes – red, green, and white, in both round and triangular configuration – are included in a kit. Although I personally never see the front sight when shooting moving targets, these bright front beads are a great asset to those who do, particularly in low light conditions.

Rounding out the package is a hefty recoil pad, and the aluminum receiver is drilled and tapped for those wishing to add a reflex sight. Synthetic stock and forend sport True Timber Prairie camo finish, which blends remarkably well into typical brownish-yellow marshland cover.

mossberg 940 waterfowl

Performance

The first thing you should do with a new shotgun (after cleaning off preservative oil and assembly) is shoot some test patterns, right? Well, that didn’t exactly happen… My Mossberg 940 Pro Waterfowl test gun arrived early in January, near the end of the waterfowl season, but just at the beginning of the outdoors show season. Cutting attendance at the Dallas Safari Club convention short by a day, we made the 950-mile drive home arriving after midnight. The next morning, I grabbed a box of my favorite waterfowl loads, and was settled in a local duck marsh with the new 940 before daylight!

When ducks arrived, I found the gun shouldered and came into my line-of-sight naturally, just like an old friend. The result? That first pair of passing gadwall folded before my conscious mind registered that I was shooting a brand-new gun! Reloading the 3-inch Apex tungsten/steel Habitat Blend loads was “butter” – even with gloved hands. An unexpected goldeneye whizzed by, and I was on it so quick that I questioned the 7-3/4 lb. weight of this gun, which seems lighter. Frankly, the 940 just feels right – thanks in part to ergonomic design of the contoured forend with Mossberg’s somewhat aggressive, signature texturing, and the adjustable synthetic stock. With just a few shells spent, I was soon leaving the marsh with a limit of ducks… and a big smile on my face!

mossberg 940 pro waterfowl for sale

A couple of trips to the range to pattern a variety of loadings were revealing. First, I shot 40-yard patterns with several popular high-powered factory hunting loads, through the X-Factor modified choke. These included the 3” Apex blend mentioned above (1-1/16 oz. steel + 1/4 oz. tungsten @ 1400 fps), 2-3/4” Kent Fasteel 2.0 (1-1/16 oz. steel @ 1550 fps), Federal’s Premium 2-3/4” Hi-Bird upland loads (1-1/4 oz. lead @ 1330 fps), and Remington’s 2-3/4” Game Loads (1 oz. lead @ 1290 fps). Ideally, a hunting shotgun should print a 50/50 pattern – meaning half the pellets impact the target above the horizontal center line, and half below – and a 60/40 pattern with high-powered loads is preferred by many hunters. Each hunting load tested met this standard, printing uniform and tight patterns. The Apex blend placed a remarkable 90% of the pellets inside a 30-inch circle at 40-yards. No wonder those first ducks I shot folded dead!

940 mossberg

Additional patterning was done later with a variety of 2-3/4” lead factory target loads, and a couple of light lead handloads, fired through the flush-mount full and improved cylinder chokes. Factory loadings included 3 Winchester AA’s, Heavy Target (1-1/8 oz. @1200 fps), Super Sport Sporting Clays (1 oz. @ 1350 fps), and Xtra-Lite (1 oz. @ 1180 fps), and Remington Premier Nitro Sporting Clays (1-1/8 oz. @ 1300 fps). Handloads included two light target loadings – 1 oz. @ 1300 fps, and 7/8 oz. @ 1375 fps. Both chokes met pattern density benchmarks (full = 70% or greater at 40 yards, improved cylinder = 70% or greater at 30 yards). Patterns were all uniform, except for the light 7/8 oz. handloads fired through the IC choke, where clay target sized holes were sometimes evident in the pattern.

mossberg 940 shotgun

Performance on both the skeet field and the sporting clays range was excellent. Sporting Clays scores of 70+ were recorded on two separate 100-target shoots (one during a wind storm!), with all targets shot as doubles. Stopping the swing, especially on doubles, is a common fault that causes missed targets. The weight and balance of the 940 Pro, and it’s smooth shouldering characteristics, help to minimize this fault – also an advantage while hunting birds! And, my skeet scores were just one or two birds lower than typical scores with my competition skeet gun.

mossberg 940 waterfowl pro

A few words about versatility. While the Waterfowl model would likely not be a top choice for avid clay target shooters, it poses no handicap for hunters who also enjoy busting clays. Furthermore, this 940 Pro model is not just a fowling piece. After waterfowl seasons closed, we took it predator hunting with great success. Foxes and coyotes were called-in and taken with both Apex Predator Tungsten Super Shot (2 oz. #2, and BB shot), and Federal’s Hevi-Shot (1-1/2 oz. B shot) out to 70 yards. Turkey killer? No problem! Just look at those 40-yard patterns above. (Note: Two 940 Pro Turkey models have shorter barrels for handling in tight quarters like ground blinds, however.) And, I suspect that some deer hunters will be firing saboted slugs through this do-it-all shotgun this fall.

mossberg 940 pro waterfowl shotgun

So…what’s not to like? Not much. Mossberg 940 Pro Waterfowl is a wonderfully capable, versatile shotgun, especially considering the price. However, I would be remiss in not mentioning the fail-to-cycle issue that prompted a return of my test gun to Mossberg for evaluation/repair. On my second duck hunt, the gun failed to cycle a high-velocity factory shotshell… twice. On my first 100-target sporting clays round, firing high-quality factory loads, the gun failed to cycle twice. An exhaustive internet search yielded virtually no fail-to-cycle issues for 940 Pro models, available to consumers for more than two years at the time. My second Sporting Clays round was two months later, and I intentionally used my own 1 oz. handloads with Red Dot powder, a powder that is notoriously dirty, particularly with light payloads. The gun failed to cycle 4 or 5 times.

At this point I had run 350+ rounds without cleaning the gun. Mossberg said to return it without cleaning. Their evaluation stated the gun “did not require service” and that the “issue could be ammo related.” They test-fired with commercial 3” waterfowl and 2-3/4” field loads, and returned the gun. On arrival, inspection revealed they had also cleaned it thoroughly. Hmmm… Frankly, when I first saw the marketing claim that the 940 Pro could fire 1500 rounds between cleanings, I was skeptical. When I review a gun, I also test it as thoroughly as I can. I intended to fire many more shells prior to the first cleaning to assess the marketing claim. Here’s my assessment: 1500 rounds between cleanings is a stretch. In fact, the owner’s manual for 940 Autoloading Shotguns states on page 25: “Mossberg recommends thorough cleaning of your firearm after every 500 rounds. However, unusually dusty, dirty, or harsh weather conditions, or use of ammunition which leaves significant powder residue may require more frequent cleaning.” Is this issue a deal breaker? Not at all.

mossberg 940 pro waterfowl 12 gauge

Mossberg 940 Pro Waterfowl

  • Action Type: Gas Operated, Semi-Automatic
  • Gauge/Chamber Size: 12 ga. / 3 in.
  • Usage: Hunting / Sporting
  • Capacity: 4+1 rounds (12+1 in Snow Goose model)
  • Barrel: 28 in. Vent Rib, Cerakote finish in Patriot Brown
  • Chokes: X-Factor Extended Tube (M) + 2 flush mount tubes (IC, F)
  • Sight: HIVIZ TriComp, Fiber-Optic LitePipe bead insert
  • Overall Length: 48.75 in.
  • Weight: 7 lbs. 12 oz.
  • Stock: Synthetic, True Timber Prairie camo; adjustable length of pull (13” to 14.25”), drop at heel, cast & pitch
  • Receiver: Aluminum, Cerakote finish in Patriot Brown
  • Mfg. Stock Number: 85151
  • MSRP: $1,161.00

Accessories Supplied with Gun: Chokes (1 extended-Modified + 2 internal F/IC), choke tube wrench, drop adjustment shims (4), retention plates (4), retention plate holders (2), cast adjustment shims (2), length of pull spacers, recoil pad screws (2), LitePipe exchange kit with instructions, plastic barrel label, cable lock with instructions, owner’s manual, and warranty card.

Other Firearm Reviews by Tony Martins:

Source link: https://blog.gritrsports.com/mossberg-940-pro-waterfowl-comprehensive-field-test-review/ by Tony Martins at blog.gritrsports.com

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Predator Hunting

The Evolution of the Beretta 9mm Pistols: 92, APX, PX4

Modern Variants of the 92FS and M9

Since the 92FS was introduced, Beretta has rolled out tons of different models. Some were specifically made for law enforcement, like the 92G for the French police, which skips the manual safety and uses a decocker lever instead. Even though the original 92G was discontinued, its slide design lives on in models like the M9A4.

Then there’s the 92D, a model that gets rid of both the safety and decocker lever, relying solely on a double-action trigger. In the ’90s, Beretta also introduced the 96 series chambered in .40 S&W to keep up with law enforcement trends.

Brigadier slide

In 1993, the Brigadier-style slide came out with reinforced locking lugs for added durability and a unique “hump” in the slide’s contour. Although the extended lifespan due to this design is up for debate, many users have noted it reduces recoil and muzzle rise. Because of this, the Brigadier slide is popular in 92 variants used in action pistol competitions.

Come early 2000s, Beretta introduced the 92 Vertec. This model was designed for law enforcement and shooters with smaller hands, featuring a slim backstrap and a shorter reach trigger. It also had an accessory rail, beveled magazine well, and interchangeable front sights. Plus, it ditched the traditional barrel protrusion by shortening the barrel to 4.7 inches but kept the slide the same length.

Beretta-92FS-vertec
Beretta 92 Vertec

Many modern 92 series variants blend features from both the Brigadier and Vertec models. Examples include the 92FS Brigadier, 92X, M9A3, and M9A4.

The Beretta 92X, introduced in 2019, standardizes the Vertec platform and adds the “Xtreme-S” trigger system, which cuts trigger reset by 40% and offers adjustability for pre-travel (in SAO models) and overtravel. Other highlights include a 3-slot Picatinny rail, a slimmer vertical grip, removable wrap-around grips to switch between Vertec-style and the classic M9 feel, fully removable high-visibility sights, and a universal slide allowing conversion from decocker-safety to decocker-only mode.

The series also includes the 92X Centurion (18 rd), 92X RDO Compact (15 rd) pistols, 92X Performance Carry Optic featuring an optic cut for USPSA competitors, and the lightweight 92X Performance Defensive for IDPA competitions.

New additions to the 92 family are the 92XI and 92GTS pistols. The 92XI is an SAO pistol with a 1911-style frame-mounted safety and comes in a base model, a Tactical model with a threaded barrel and DLC-coated trigger components, and a flashy Squalo edition. Meanwhile, the 92GTS is DA/SA with a twin sear and a decocker-only configuration.

Now, let’s get back to the M9. Around the mid-2000s, the US military requested some tweaks to the original design. Beretta responded with the M9A1, which borrowed features from the 92G-SD like a railed frame, standard 92 grip contour, beveled mag well, and textured grip while keeping the original M9 slide mostly the same.

beretta-m9a3-m9a4

Almost a decade later, Beretta rolled out the M9A3, featuring a replaceable front sight, a railed frame, and a Vertec-style backstrap with an aggressive grip texture. It also includes a wraparound rubber grip to replicate the feel of the standard M9A1 backstrap. The standout feature of the M9A3 is a redesigned slide that allows the gun to switch between FS and G configurations using a conversion kit, something that previously required an expensive and permanent modification by a gunsmith.

The latest iteration, the Beretta M9A4, boasts a red-dot optic compatible slide, dovetailed tritium night sights, an enhanced short-reset Xtreme Trigger System, 18-round sand-resistant magazines, and textured Vertec-style thin grips.

Source link: https://blog.gritrsports.com/beretta-9mm-pistols-92-apx-px4/ by Gritr Sports at blog.gritrsports.com

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Predator Hunting

Our Top Picks for Home Defense

Buckshot, particularly 00 buck, is widely recommended for its effectiveness in stopping a threat. However, the choice of ammunition can also depend on your living situation. For instance, individuals in apartment buildings or homes with thin walls might consider lighter loads or specific defense rounds designed to reduce the risk of over-penetration.

Source link: https://blog.gritrsports.com/best-home-defense-shotguns/ by Gritr Sports at blog.gritrsports.com

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Predator Hunting

Beginner’s Arsenal: Best Guns for Novice Shooters

Stepping into the world of firearms is no small decision. You’re not just picking out a tool; you’re selecting a companion for your safety, your sport, and in some cases, your survival. We’re here to break down for you what makes a solid beginner gun as well as recommend the best starter models.Here’s a quick summary:
  • 9mm pistols are the best for EDC, vehicle security, and home protection. The best starter pistols are Glock 17 or Sig P320.
  • An AR-15 rifle chambered for 5.56 NATO/.223 Rem cartridge, like the S&W M&P15 Sport III, is a great option for home protection and target shooting. Rifles are generally easier to shoot accurately and generate less felt recoil.
  • Ruger 10/22 chambered for the .22LR low-power rimfire cartridge is a great way to start your shooting journey if you want a rifle that is soft-kicking and quiet and has more classic ergonomics.
  • Shotguns in the Mossberg 500 or 590 series are great for beginner shotgun hunters or those looking for a home defense gun that doesn’t require good marksmanship.

Ideal Beginner Gun – What Should It Be?

Pistols: If you’ve found yourself here, chances are you’re on the fence about which type of firearm fits your future needs best. Handguns, especially semi-auto pistols, are prime picks for everyday carry and situations requiring agility, like home defense, vehicle defense, and close-quarter battle (CQB). That said, handguns do have their limitations. Their shorter barrels limit the effective range and make accurate aiming a tad more challenging due to the short sight radius. Additionally, handguns designed for more powerful rounds like .45 ACP, .357 Mag, and 10mm can be challenging to manage because of their recoil.

Rifles: Rifles offer a significant step up in power and accuracy, with effective ranges extending to 300-600 yards and beyond, thanks to longer barrels that help with bullet stabilization and building up pressure. They’re generally easier to shoot accurately and manageably. For home defense, rifles with barrels around 16-18 inches are spot on. And if you’re thinking about hunting or precision shooting, you need to go longer.

AR-pistols and short-barreled rifles (SBR) offer a middle ground, mixing the maneuverability of handguns with the power of rifles, though legal hurdles can complicate ownership.

Shotguns: They are kings of versatility, useful in a range of activities from home defense to hunting various types of game. Planning on hunting? Make sure you’ve got your shot pattern right, so you don’t ruin your game. As for home protection and target shooting, accuracy isn’t as critical with shotguns, making them a solid choice for beginners.

Best Guns for Beginner Gun Owners

At this point, you might now have a better grasp of what suits your needs best. Next up, we’re going to provide recommendations for the best starter guns ideal for beginner shooters.

Best Beginner Pistols: Glock 17 or Sig P320

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There’s always a heated debate between two camps over which brand is truly the best. However, it’s clear that both Glock and Sig Sauer produce pistols that are reliable, durable, and highly customizable.

The Glock 17 (or G17) and the Sig Sauer P320 are full-size pistols, each offering significant advantages for beginners. Full-size pistols are easier to control because the mass of the pistol absorbs a good bit of the recoil. They are easier to be accurate with thanks to longer slides, not to mention both models offer 17 rounds of capacity with a standard magazine. A longer barrel means more power and better accuracy over greater distances. Plus, both the G17 and the SIG P320 are chambered in 9mm Luger – the most balanced and versatile cartridge out there.

Curious about choosing the right beginner handgun? Check out our guide on Choosing the Best Defense Handgun for a Beginner. It dives deeper into pistol frame sizes and other essential factors.

Now, comparing the G17 to the P320, you’ll find each has unique advantages and trade-offs. Glocks are the workhorses of the pistol world – rugged, reliable, and with rather simplistic aesthetics, all at an affordable price range. They’re known to handle thousands of rounds without a hiccup and can take a good amount of abuse. Another advantage is the vast aftermarket for parts, upgrades, and customizations. Here’s an example. Glocks are known for their mediocre trigger feel out of the box. So when you get the basics down and figure out what you’d like to improve, there are plenty of aftermarket options available to you.

If the Glock’s aesthetic and ergonomics don’t appeal to you, the Sig P320 might be more to your liking. Right out of the box, it’s a solid full-size pistol with an appealing design and reliable performance. Like the Glock, the P320 boasts strong aftermarket support. Plus, it offers a modular design that lets you easily switch frame sizes to suit your preference.

Both the G17 and P320 are DAO (Double Action Only) pistols, meaning they have internal safeties and no external safeties to fuss with. This design choice means there’s nothing to forget to disengage in a tense moment or slow you down. Still, if you’re set on having a manual safety, Sig Sauer also provides the M17, a military version of the P320 with that feature.

Why We Love the Glock 17:

  • Reliability and Durability: Known for being able to handle thousands of rounds without any issues, making it a reliable choice for both beginners and seasoned shooters.
  • Simplicity and Affordability: With its no-frills design and affordable price range, it’s an accessible firearm for those new to shooting.
  • Customization Options: A vast aftermarket allows for numerous upgrades and customizations, catering to the user’s preferences over time.
  • No External Safety: DAO design with internal safeties simplifies use.

Why We Love the Sig Sauer P320:

  • Modular Design: Allows for easy transition between frame sizes, making it versatile for different hand sizes and shooting preferences.
  • Out-of-the-Box Performance: Delivers reliable performance and an appealing design, providing a solid starting point for any beginner.
  • Aftermarket Support: Like the Glock, enjoys strong aftermarket support for parts and customizations, enhancing its longevity and adaptability.
  • No External Safety: DAO design with internal safeties simplifies use.

Other Options:

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SIG P320 Starter Pack

sig-p320

SIG SAUER P320

Specifications:

p320-holster

P320 OWB Holster

Holosun 507K

9mm Cleaning Kit

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Best Beginner AR-15: Smith & Wesson M&P Sport III

When you’re starting out in the gun world, you’re probably looking for something that won’t break the bank but still has all the right stuff to get you going. That’s where the third-gen M&P15 Sport from Smith & Wesson shines. Priced comfortably under $1,000 — actually, you can grab one for around $650 to $700 — it’s a solid pick without feeling like you’re cutting corners.

Sure, there are other rifles like the PSA M4 Carbine from Palmetto State Armory that come in even cheaper, under $500. But the M&P15 Sport III has a couple of tricks up its sleeve. For starters, it’s got a mid-length gas system. This is key for a 16-inch barrel since it not only makes the rifle last longer but also gives you a smoother shooting experience. Plus, the 1:8 twist rate is versatile enough to handle loads as light as 55gr M193 bullets and as heavy as 90gr, making it great for experimenting with different types of ammo.

This AR-15 rifle also boasts a 15” free-floating M-LOK handguard, which means you can attach all sorts of accessories. Plus, it’s got a full-length pic rail on top for when you want to add optics — especially handy since it doesn’t come with iron sights. And with a 6-position collapsible stock, you can adjust it to just the right fit. Sure, you might find cheaper models out there, but the M&P15 Sport III’s blend of softer recoil, versatility, and must-have features like the M-LOK handguard and adjustable stock makes it an awesome choice for anyone just getting into shooting.

Why We Love the S&W M&P15 Sport III

  • Affordably Priced: At under $1,000, often between $650 to $700, it’s a high-value option for beginners.
  • Mid-Length Gas System: Enhances durability and provides a smoother shooting experience.
  • Versatile 1:8 Twist Rate: Suitable for a wide range of ammunition, from light 55gr M193 bullets to heavier 90gr rounds.
  • Other Features: 15” free-floating M-LOK handguard, full-length Picatinnyicatinny rail, 6-position collapsible stock.

Other Options:

  • PSA 16″ M4 Carbine
  • Aero Precision Aero AC-15M
  • IWI Zion-15

AR-15 Starter Pack

S&W M&P15 sport 3

S&W M&P15 Sport III

Specifications:

SIG SAUER ROMEO5XDR Gen II Red Dot Sight with Juliet 5

Red Dot Combo

MAGPUL AR/M4 PMAG 30 GEN M3 5.56x45 Magazine With Window

30rd Magazine

UTG AR15 Cleaning Kit

AR Cleaning Kit

Best Beginner .22 Rifle: Ruger 10/22

ruger-10-22

If you’re looking for a classic semi-auto rifle that’s perfect for beginners, the Ruger 10/22 is hard to beat. This rifle is a legend, making it an awesome choice for teaching both kids and adults the ropes of shooting sports. The Ruger 10/22 fires the .22LR round, which is super cheap and has almost no kick, plus it’s really quiet. However, keep in mind, that the .22LR is a low-power cartridge, and its effective range tops out at about 150 yards. While it might not be your go-to for self-defense, especially compared to rounds like the .223 Rem or 9mm, it’s still not something you’d want to be on the receiving end of.

With the .22LR, you’re all set to join rimfire competitions, go after small game, or just have fun plinking in the backyard. Ruger offers a bunch of different 10/22 models so you can find one that’s just right for you. Whether it’s the 10/22 Carbine with its classic looks and versatility, the 10/22 Target for hitting bulls-eyes, or the 10/22 Tactical for competition use, Ruger’s got you covered.

All in all, the Ruger 10/22 is a solid, well-balanced rifle that packs reliable performance and up-to-date features into a classic design.

Why We Love the Ruger 10/22

  • Perfect for Beginners: With minimal recoil (.22LR round) and a quiet operation, it’s an ideal firearm for teaching new shooters the basics.
  • Versatility in Use: Whether you’re interested in rimfire competitions, small game hunting, or backyard plinking, the 10/22 serves all purposes well.
  • Affordability of Ammunition: The cost-effectiveness of .22LR rounds means you can shoot more for less, perfect for extensive practice sessions without breaking the bank.
  • Variety of Models Available: Ruger offers multiple versions of the 10/22 to fit every shooter’s need, from the classic Carbine to the precision-focused Target model, and the competition-ready Tactical version.
  • Unmatched Durability and Performance: Known for its reliability and solid construction, the Ruger 10/22 ensures a long-lasting shooting experience with consistent performance.

Other Options:

Ruger 10/22 .22 LR Rifle Starter Pack

RUGER 10/22 Takedown 22 LR

RUGER 10/22 Takedown

Specifications:

PROMAG Ruger 10/22 22 LR 55rd drum mag

55rd Drum Mag

VORTEX Crossfire II 2-7x32mm rimfire scope

Rimfire Scope

universal gun cleaning kit

Cleaning Kit

Best Beginner Shotgun: Mossberg 500/590

mossberg-590-shockwave

Talking about shotguns and not bringing up the Mossberg 500 and the Remington 870 series is nearly impossible. They’re both standout choices for newbies and honestly, picking between them often boils down to which brand you vibe with more rather than a clear winner in performance. Lately, though, a lot of shooters are leaning towards the Mossberg, saying it’s more consistent in quality. Plus, Mossberg 500/590 shotguns sport a couple of user-friendly features like the more convenient location of the safety and slide release as well as a skeletonized always-up shell lifter that allows you to load shells and clear malfunctions easier.

The Mossberg 500 and 590 shotgun series are loved for their straightforward, pump-action design. It means they’re easy to use thanks to fewer moving parts, weigh less compared to semi-autos, and are pretty darn durable. Both series come decked out with features that make life easier, like ambidextrous safeties and anti-jam elevators.

When it comes down to what you’ll use it for, the Mossberg 500 is your go-to for hunting. It comes in a bunch of camo options plus wood and black synthetic stocks, and its lightweight build and longer barrel make aiming and control easier.

If you’re gearing up for home defense or tactical purposes, the Mossberg 590 is where it’s at. It’s decked out for customization, built to take whatever comes its way, and boasts a higher shell capacity. And if a compact, easy-to-maneuver shotgun for tight spots is what you need, the Mossberg 590 Shockwave is legendary. Though it might take some getting used to, it’s surprisingly manageable once you get the hang of it.

Why We Love the Mossberg 500 and 590 Series

  • Consistent Quality: Many shooters express a preference for Mossberg over other brands for its consistent quality across models.
  • User-Friendly Features: The conveniently located safety and slide release, coupled with a skeletonized always-up shell lifter, make the Mossberg series exceptionally easy to load and clear.
  • Pump-Action Design: This design ensures fewer moving parts, lighter weight, and remarkable durability in both the 500 and 590 series.
  • Versatility for Hunting and Tactical Use: The Mossberg 500 is ideal for hunting, available in various camo, wood, and black synthetic stocks. In contrast, the Mossberg 590 suits home defense or tactical scenarios, boasting customization options and a higher shell capacity.

Other Options:

Considering a shotgun for home protection? Read our guide on the Best Home Defense Shotguns.

Mossberg 590 Shockwave Starter Pack

MOSSBERG 590 Shockwave 12Ga 14.3in

MOSSBERG 590 Shockwave

Specifications:

Mossberg 590 light mount

Forend Light

Side Saddle, 9 Shell

Side Saddle

Shotgun Sling

Shotgun Sling

FAQs

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The fit of a gun is determined by how well your hand can grip it, your ability to reach the trigger comfortably, and how natural it feels when aiming. The right gun should feel like an extension of your hand; it shouldn’t feel too heavy or awkward.

Yes, it is highly recommended to take a firearm safety course, even if it’s not legally required in your area. These courses provide essential information about safe handling, storing, and operating firearms. They also often cover local gun laws, which is crucial knowledge for any gun owner.

The 9mm Luger is a popular choice due to its balance of recoil, size, and power. It’s manageable for most new shooters, widely available, and is used in a variety of handgun sizes. This caliber allows beginners to practice effectively without being overwhelmed by recoil. 5.56/.223 as well as .22LR are good rifle calibers.

It’s advisable to clean your gun after every use to ensure it operates correctly and safely. If you’re not using your gun frequently, a thorough cleaning and inspection every few months is recommended. Regular maintenance prevents the buildup of residues and corrosion, prolonging the life of your firearm.

Yes, you can purchase a gun online, for example, on gritrsports.com, but it must be shipped to a Federal Firearms License (FFL) holder, usually a gun store, where you can pick it up. You’ll need to complete the necessary background checks and paperwork at the FFL, just as if you were buying a gun in a store.

This depends on your comfort level and the intended use of the firearm. Some people prefer the added precaution of the manual safety, especially if they are new to handling guns or if there are children in the home. Others prefer firearms without manual safeties for simpler operation.

Safe gun storage is essential for preventing accidents and unauthorized access. Options include gun safes, lockboxes, and safety locks that prevent the gun from being fired. It’s also advisable to store ammunition separately from the firearm.

The cost of a reliable beginner firearm varies widely, typically ranging from $400 to $800. While it might be tempting to go for a cheaper option, investing in a good-quality firearm from a reputable manufacturer ensures reliability, safety, and a better shooting experience.

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The fit of a gun is determined by how well your hand can grip it, your ability to reach the trigger comfortably, and how natural it feels when aiming. The right gun should feel like an extension of your hand; it shouldn’t feel too heavy or awkward.”}},{“@type”:”Question”,”name”:”Is it necessary to take a firearms safety course?”,”acceptedAnswer”:{“@type”:”Answer”,”text”:”

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The 9mm Luger is a popular choice due to its balance of recoil, size, and power. It’s manageable for most new shooters, widely available, and is used in a variety of handgun sizes. This caliber allows beginners to practice effectively without being overwhelmed by recoil. 5.56/.223 as well as .22LR are good rifle calibers.”}},{“@type”:”Question”,”name”:”How often should I clean my gun?”,”acceptedAnswer”:{“@type”:”Answer”,”text”:”

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The post Beginner’s Arsenal: Best Guns for Novice Shooters appeared first on Blog.GritrSports.com.

Source link: https://blog.gritrsports.com/best-gun-for-beginner/ by Maria Mamchits at blog.gritrsports.com

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