Stock Exchange “How a 20-Gauge Tactical Became a 20-Gauge Practical”

If you have had a chance to read my review of the Mossberg 20-gauge Tactical shotgun Mossberg 500 20-Gauge Tactical Shotgun (54300), one of my peeves with shotgun was the stock that was provided with the shotgun.

Standard Stock (Left) and Replacement Stock (Right)

Standard Stock (Left) and Replacement Stock (Right)

The LOP with the stock that came with the shotgun was 11-inches without the butt pad. Adding a one-inch spacer took the LOP out to twelve-inches. Mounting the butt pad extended the LOP to 12.75-inches, which was still too short for my comfort. A LimbSaver slip-on recoil pad was added to provide 3.75-inch of LOP. This was more like it, but still shorter than my desired 14.25-inch to 14.75-inch LOP. Why Mossberg decided to place a “youth” stock on a “tactical” shotgun with a 20-inch barrel is beyond me, but they did. I do admit to having a long reach and, with a total six-foot wingspan, most stocks feel too short.

Standard Stock (Bottom) and Replacement Stock (Top)

Standard Stock (Bottom) and Replacement Stock (Top)

I ordered a “normal” stock from Mossberg, a black polymer unit, to replace the erector set that Mossberg called a stock. With the new stock, according to Mossberg, I could expect a LOP of 13.75-inches. That was more to my liking.

The grip pattern of the new stock was not as textured as the original stock. The new stock did; however, provide a better match with subtle pattern of the forearm.

Changing out a Mossberg 500 stock is a pretty simple affair and is well worth the 10 minutes or so out of my life. A standard Phillips screwdriver tip provides for the removal of the butt-pad and spacer screws, and a long-shank, large, flat-tipped screwdriver (or a 3/8” socket) makes removal of the stock mounting bolt a quick effort.

New Stock with 13.75-inch LOP. The LimbSaver Slip-On Recoil Pad Extends the LOP to 15"

New Stock with 13.75-inch LOP. The LimbSaver Slip-On Recoil Pad Extends the LOP to 15″

Place the new stock in place and tighten the mounting bolt, but do not over-tighten. The receiver of the Mossberg shotgun is aluminum and so are the stock mounting threads. Snug is all that is needed. Attach the butt-pad (with the provided screws) with a Phillips screwdriver and, once again, I had an operational shotgun. Not only did I have an operational shotgun, but an operational shotgun with a LOP within my operational range. The new stock (with butt pad) gave me a 13.75-inch LOP. Add the LimbSaver clip-on recoil pad and the LOP moves out to an uncompressed 15-inches. For me, a 15-inch LOP is perfect when I am just wearing a shirt or light vest. With a medium to heavy coat, I simply pull off the LimbSaver and operate with the 13.75” LOP. The LOP does not matter if I am wearing, or not wearing, trousers.

Mossberg supplied a short stock with the long-barreled 20-gauge Tactical shotgun, yet they offer a standard stock with the shorter barreled shotguns like the 500 Tactical 6-shot. However, and in Mossberg’s defense, an adjustable stock version is available for the same shotgun that I have (500 Tactical – Adjustable Stock (#54301): and that provides a 10.75″ – 14.25″ LOP. While it is an adequate LOP range for most folks, I prefer full-size stocks with a fixed LOP. Besides, a hollow full-size stock allows me to stock the stock with survival supplies (fire making materials, spare flashlight batteries, and long Slim Jims) – just in case.

As with any firearm, you must make the firearm fits your requirements. Exchanging stocks on the Mossberg 500 8-shot Tactical 20-gauge was my way of making the shotgun fit me and my needs, and I don’t think that I need to go farther than that.

And in closing, if you need a short Mossberg 20-gauge stock with limited adjustment capabilities (11-inches to 12.75-inches), I just happen to have one.


About Taurian

Taurian is a U.S. Army veteran and former LEO and Defensive Tactics Instructor. Taurian also has over fifty years of experience as a Technical Writer and Training Program Developer. After leaving home at the age of ten without any shoes, Taurian continues on with many years devoted to the keeping and bearing of arms.

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