Having carried a Mossberg 500 Persuader 12 gauge on duty for many years, I want to get something out of the way first so I can get on with better describing this versatile series of shotguns: The Model 500 Persuader kicks like a mule. Bottom line. End of story. Even with a pistol grip, the recoil on this tactical style shotgun is rough. Now that that’s done, let me tell you about a series of shotguns that can fit virtually any need whatsoever in the field.
The Mossberg 500
Mossberg hit a homerun with the 500 series in that they gained popularity for all the right reasons. What makes the Mossberg 500 so appealing is that every single one has a reliable, tried and true pump action only design—making it hard to choose which one I prefer most—and they’re affordable.
The company introduced the shotgun into the U.S. market in the early 1960s as a low maintenance shotgun that would work reliably in harsh weather conditions. Although the basic design has undergone aesthetic changes throughout the years, such as adding dual-action bars, it has always been the same at heart.
Types of 500
The basic Mossberg 500 has a rather straightforward design. Nothing too fancy. It’s typically seen with a vent ribbed barrel, bead front sight, a cushioned butt pad, and comes with either a walnut stock or synthetic stock and in a variety of finishes.