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4/10/13

Project 590A1: Stock Swap


The 590A1's factory stock has a very long length of pull - 14.5 inches, I believe. For a modern shooting/fighting stance, standing squared up towards the target, it just does not work unless you have very long arms. It's just too darn long. So, pretty quickly after purchase, I went out in search of a more useful stock.

Originally, I went with Hogue's 12 inch length of pull stock. Despite great reviews, I was unimpressed. The build quality was no better than the stock Mossberg, and, instead of being too long, the 12-inch length of pull was too short. Doh!

In working with these conventional style stocks and the 590A1, I also began to notice the shotgun's weight, especially during reloads and one-handed manipulations. The 590A1 is not a light gun, and when you add 8 shells to the tube, it only gets heavier.

So, I decided to stop screwing around with different fixed length stocks, and try out something with an adjustable/collapsible stock length. I was also curious to see if a pistol grip stock would help better control the 590A1's weight.

I contacted Choate Machine & Tool and asked to give one of their telescoping shotgun stocks a try. I've previously reviewed their AR-15 collapsible stock and knew their shotgun stock would be solid and sturdy, certainly what I'm going for with this build.

The Choate Mossberg Telescoping Stock and a Magpul K grip - a great combo.
The stock installed without much trouble - the provided castle nut didn't match up well with the wrench that I have used on my AR builds, but I was able to get it to work with minimal hassle. The stock tightens down and locks in quite well...no wiggle here, amigos.

The Choate stock finally provided a "just right" length of pull--awesome. However, the ergonomics made reaching the shotgun's pump release a challenge. The angle of the supplied AR-15 grip just made the pump release too far of a reach for my thumb to hit, and awkward for my middle finger to reach over and depress. There are ways around having to use the pump release, but I'm not a fan of using workarounds to compensate for shortcomings in your gear.

All hope was not lost, though. The Choate stock allows you to swap in pretty much any standard AR-15 grip - just remove the grip screw, attach the new grip and re-tighten. I picked up a Magpul K Grip, which has a less dramatic, more neutral grip angle, and presto--problem solved.

With the K grip installed, I can now reach the pump release with ease--either by reaching around and hitting it with my middle finger, or by rotating the shotgun on my shoulder and depressing it with my thumb. The shoulder rotation, for whatever reason, helps with the body mechanics and makes depressing the release much easier--it also has the nice side effect of giving you a clear view into the chamber.
Close up of the Magpul K grip - the more neutral angle improves access to 590A1s controls.
With the K grip added, I've become a huge fan of this set up and found it to offers greatly improved usability over the more conventional stocks that I'd tried previously. The length of pull is perfect. The pistol grip really helps control the weight of the hefty 590A1 during reloads and one handed manipluations - firing one handed, for example. It's a very comfortable, easy to use stock setup. The cheek weld is very natural and puts my eyes in the perfect position for aiming.

It's also got the rugged build quality that I've come to expect from Choate - very solid. In a pinch, hard use and smashing stuff would be no problem.

The stock also has two compartments, which will be used to store spare CR-123As for the to-be-added weapons light and a basic cleaning kit. Choate's telescoping stocks offer the best quality built-in storage compartments that I've come across. It also offers multiple sling attachment points, giving plenty of options for the end user.

The stock doesn't offer any kind of recoil mitigation--no springs or contraptions--but I've fired a plenty of bird shot, buck and even 1 ounce slugs through it with relative comfort. There's no doubt that you're shooting slugs, but it's not painful. TEOTWAWKI Wife shot a box worth of shells through the 590A1 this past weekend without troubles--her first time shooting a 12 gauge.

If you're looking for a pistol grip telescoping stock for your evil black shotgun, definitely check out the Choatte stock + Magpul K grip combo. Certainly zombie apocalypse ready.

Check out Choate's Mossberg Telescoping Stock >

For non-Mossberg folks, Choate offers the same stock for the Remington 870.

Pick up a Magpul K grip on Amazon >

8 comments :

  1. I generally hate putting M4 stocks on random guns but there are some upsides. First if you happen to fall between the length of pull on a standard stock and a short one the options are an adjustable stock or home gun smithing something in the middle. Second and where I think they really shine is for pool guns. 6'3" Hubby, 5'10" Son and 5 nothing Wifey can use the same shotgun comfortably with just a couple second adjustment.

    Glad you are happy with it.

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    1. Ryan -

      The body mechanics of a pistol grip are also superior over a conventional stock, especially for a fighting gun. There is a reason pretty much all modern fighting long guns have them!

      With a conventional stock, the guns weight is supported by your wrist; a pistol grip allows you to use the full strength of your arm.

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    2. Pistol grips I have no issues with.

      My personal beef is with the adjustable M4 stock, which only exists because of the receiver extension, being slapped onto every long gun known to man. Shotguns, AK's and for goodness sake Mossberg's new 30-30. However I realize this is somewhat a personal taste thing so if you like it then rock on.

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    3. Agree - it's over done and often makes no sense. The Mossberg 30-30 is an abomination.

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  2. I own a few Choate stock products, both folding and fixed models and have no complaints whatsoever about their quality or function. They make a great product. I own a telescoping shotgun stock (not Choate) which I have little confidence for long term durability. The grip feels very comfortable though and that was why I purchased it in 1st place. Live and learn.

    Do you have problems accessing the Mossberg tang safety with that stock ? I own a Mossberg Camper (pistol gripped 20 gauge pump), and the pistol grip and tang safety are not that compatible. The Remington 870 button safety behind the trigger is not a problem at all.

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    1. Depending on how you hold the stock, accessing the tang safety can require shifting your grip, but it is not overly difficult. You can also simply hold the shotgun like you would with a conventional stock, and access it normally.

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  3. Wow that thing is mean looking. Would you say the recoil feel is less or more than with a standard wood stock with the rubber recoil pad? It looks good!

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    1. I haven't shot this gun with a wood stock, but recoil is comparable to the other polymer stocked shotgun's I've fired, all of which have had some kind of hard rubber pad. Hard rubber is certainly easier on the shoulder than bare wood, but you still know you're shooting a 12 gauge.

      As far as recoil goes, your best bet is going to be a proper technique. Have fired 1 oz slugs and 00 buckshot - definitely a difference from birdshot, but not painful.

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