Why Do So Many People Like This Popular Shotgun?


Are you considering buying a shotgun? If so, then there is a model which has become almost a staple of shotgun owners in the U.S. for fifty years that you may want to consider: the Mossberg 500.

You may wonder why it’s been a popular weapon for fifty years. Great question. David Maccar explains:

Why have they been so popular? Several reasons: The 500 is a simple, no-frills shotgun. It’s affordable. It appeals to shooters who prefer a tough, functional gun rather than something prettier and more refined. But the biggest reason for its longevity is its balance of adaptability and consistency.

And how did Mossberg achieve that consistency? Maccar continues:


The gun was made with as few parts as possible, and could be produced easily with less machining than pump guns of the day. It required no hand-fitting, which saved on production time and costs. This translated into an extremely affordable shotgun that just about anyone could own. It also meant the shotgun was particularly robust and could take a beating in the field and still function.

To give you another idea of the simplicity of design, you can almost take a Mossberg 500 apart by hand, with the exception of pins that hold the trigger assembly in place. How many other guns can you take apart, clean, and put back together without precision tools?

Additionally, you can swap barrels by yourself in seconds so you can use the same shotgun for multiple uses (you only have to loosen one bolt), and the inside design of the gun allows for movement without wear due to components rubbing against each other. Another plus for longevity.

This dependability, versatility, and economic pricing go a long way in explaining why Mossberg has manufactured over nine million of this model over the years and why everyone from hunters to law enforcement to military personnel have used this shotgun.

In a nutshell, the Mossberg 500 is incredibly versatile while still being incredibly affordable. If you’re looking for a shotgun, this may be a weapon to consider.



  1. Finger on the trigger….??? Good idea to check photos before posting
    The 500 is a good shotgun. I have had 2 of these for over 40 years with no issues.

    • Unfortunately Bob I to have noticed more and more “stock” photos that show a finger on the trigger and it sends out the wrong message to “new/young” shooters and poor firearm handeling. Editors and photo editors need to be more diligent in this matter.

  2. I have owned a Mossberg 500 since the 1960’s, the first ones were good, but the weakest part was the link that
    connected the fore arm to the slide. later they made this part a double link/ rod and that gave it the strength
    it needed. It is a good gun for the money, I used it for hunting, but it is good for self defense if needed.

  3. This shotgun is a one gun does it all basicly weapon. There standard vent rib barrel take a varity of choke tubes. Then there is a rifled slug barrel with or without scope mount, It is also offered to take a .50 caliber inline muzzel loader barrel,and an 18 1/2 barrel for security use. There may be different guns that do each of these things better but not many that do it all very well. Limited space and tight budget this is the one to take a serious look at,I have had mine for 45+ years and it has never failed. Use it,clean it, store it, enough said.

  4. When I became a deputy in southern Arizona, if you had a shotgun in your car, it was your personal shotgun. I had a Mossberg 500 because I felt much more comfortable with it than with the Remington 870 I had trained with and used at the state prison. Then the county bought one shotgun for each district, and it was the first deputy to get to the substation. Finally, the department started issuing Winchester shotguns, and I stuck with my 500. For many reasons, I remain a dyed in the wool Mossberg shooter to this day, it is the only shotgun I will trust my life to.

  5. This is also why the Remington 870 is so popular. Both are dead simple and hammer reliable which along with a good price is why between them more than 20 million have been bought!

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