I have regarded shotguns as my primary alarm and emergency gun for many years. During the past fifty years I have broken an action pin is a Mossberg 500 and fired a Remington 870 until the trigger return spring broke. That is a lot of firing and a lot of training. No other type I have used and seen fired extensively in training as been as reliable as the pump shotgun save perhaps for the Glock 17 9mm handgun. I was slow to adopt self loading shotguns. One of the shotguns I now consider a front line defense piece is the Mossberg 930. I have investigated a number of 12 gauge buckshot shootings. The wound potential is unequaled. I have seen deer crumple from the impact of slugs as if hit by Thor’s hammer. The load combination is simply excellent for personal defense.
The Mossberg 930 and the newer 940 have some pretty well known proponents. . If you have see shooters like Jerry, Kay, and Lena Miculek perform the impossible with the Mossberg shotgun you will have great confidence in the design. Very few of us will reach their standard. Just the same if the 930 is good enough for the Miculeks it is good enough for us! I have used various models of the 930. The 940 is an even better gun with changes in the gas system. The 930 should be cleaned about every five hundred shells according to most. While this is a reasonable standard some loads are dirtier than others. The 940 also allows features an improved stock design with excellent length of pull and cant adjustment. The 930 is a good shotgun. The 940 is simply an improved version. 3 Gun competetion is the natural home of the competetion and tactical model. The 24 inch barrel handles quickly. The receiver is aluminum which saves weight. The safety is in the usual Mossberg position on the top tang making it accessible to right and left handled manipulation. The safety and bolt release as well as the cocking handle are extended for rapid manipulation. The magazine well is large enough for rapid replenishment of the ammunition supply. The extended magazine holds nine 2 ¾ inch shotgun shells. The chamber also accepts 3 inch shells. This makes for a formidable home defense shotgun. While a lighter and handy pump- they are also less expensive- will get the job done the automatic is clearly a desirable option for many of us.
The high end 940 competetion model features the magazine tube connector, bolt handle, bolt release button, safety lever and trigger in gold tone anodizing. The 940 also features a nickel boron action poarts finish for high lubricity. The gas system and coating on these Mossberg shotguns make them easily cleaned. There 930 and 940 cycle quickly. The interval between cleaning in the 940 may extend to 1,500 shells. This shotguns accommodates a heavy practice and competetion schedule. A new shotgun purchased for 3-Gun competetion it should be the 940. For most of us the 930 is a great choice. Occasionally a 930 comes up on the used market. If cast and length of pull adjustment are important- the 940 again as the stock offers good adjustment. So many choices! There are less expensive personal defense versions running less than eight hundred dollars at cheaperthandirt.com. The competetion model features a vented rib and ends with a Hi Viz TriComp fiber optic. While the 18.5 inch barrel defense gun swings quickly the 24 inch gun is fast, very fast, and balances very well. For what a shotgun is used for I don’t like pistol grips or box magazines. They are popular with those who don’t understand shotguns. The Mossberg shotguns handle like a shotgun should and offer excellent hit probability. A cohesive pattern is very important, The pattern should be centered. I wish to center the buckshot load in personal defense training. I don’t accept the ridiculous notion that birdshot works for home defense and I use cheap shells only for practice. I load the shotgun with reliable shells that provide a good pattern at maximum shotgun range. Most to the time these shells are the Hornady Critical Defense #00 buckshot. Remington Managed Recoil buckshot and Federal Flite Wad are other good choices.
When firing the Mossberg automatic shotgun quickly there are advantages in the design. The forend is generous offering good purchase. Even my personal shotgun with its non adjustable stock is practically ideal for most shooters. I am what most call average and the standard 930 fits me well. The rubber recoil pad is softer than most offering good shock absorbing function. Recoil is moderated somewhat by the gas operated action. I am no Miculek but I can really crank out shells and get hits with the Mossberg. Speed loads are excellent with this shotgun it isn’t difficult to keep the shotgun topped off and running.
Trigger action of a shotgun isn’t as critical as a rifle or handgun but should be crisp and feature a rapid reset. The Mossberg reset is sharp and the trigger break at a smooth 4.2 pounds. A loaded chamber indicator inside the triggerguard indicates when the action is cocked. My shotgun has been reliable through several thousand shells of all types including cheap foreign stuff. This is a great shotgun that offers pride of ownership and excellent protection. As for the 940 after firing several I am certain I will obtain one in due time. I am not blind to progress!
I recently checked Cheaperthandirt.com for 12 gauge shell availability. Low brass has not been hurt too bad but buckshot is finally available in a wide choice offering the shooter an opportunity to test, pattern, and choose his or her load with confidence. CTD also has the Mossberg line available at a good price. Don’t deploy the cheapest shotgun shells for defense. Some don’t even use a wad the buckshot simply lays in the shell! But then- if the shotgun is used only for home defense even these loads make a rat hole at 7 yards.
- Action Type: gas-operated, semi-automatic shotgun
- Chambering: 12-ga., 2 ¾” and 3” shells
- Receiver: hard-anodized aluminum, drilled-and-tapped for optics
- Barrel: 24″ vented rib, smooth bore
- Magazine: tubular, matte black,
- Front Sight: HIVIZ fiber-optic, interchangeable
- Trigger Guard: aluminum
- Safety: tang-mounted slider, metallic
- Fore–end: checkered black polymer
- Buttstock: checkered black polymer
- Recoil Pad: textured and vented black rubber
- Drop at Comb: 1.35″
- Drop at Heel: 2.15″
- Length of Pull: adjustable, 13″-14.25″ using provided spacers
- Choke: Accu Choke
- Overall Length: 44.75″
- Trigger Pull: 4.2
- Weight: 7 lbs., 12 ozs