What Could Possibly Go Wrong: Mossberg 500 Chainsaw Edition

You know all those jokes about gun control meaning controlling your gun? True dat. Anything that improves accuracy is a good thing. Anything that doesn’t isn’t. That said, a firearm is what it is. It’s the shooter’s job to wield it safely and effectively. But some gun designs are safer than others. Wilson Combat marketing maven John May reckons a 1911 “isn’t a beginner’s gun.” So what, then, do we make of the Mossberg 500 chainsaw? Setting aside considerations of its unique utility (should there be any), is the Mossy any more dangerous than a “normal” shotgun? Does that matter? Yes and maybe. [h/t to everydaynodaysoff.com]

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About Robert Farago

Robert Farago is the Publisher of The Truth About Guns (TTAG). He started the site to explore the ethics, morality, business, politics, culture, technology, practice, strategy, dangers and fun of guns.

42 Responses to What Could Possibly Go Wrong: Mossberg 500 Chainsaw Edition

  1. avatar2Wheels says:

    I can see it being useful for SWAT teams needing a shotgun dedicated to door-breaching duty, but as a combat/defense/zombie-killing shotgun? Forget about it.

    I wonder if this stems from the mindset some people have that you don’t have to aim shotguns. Just pick it up and fire it from the hip, with the 10 feet wide spread of buckshot you’re bound to hit them zombies right?

    • avatarGossven says:

      +1

    • avatarRobert Farago says:

      I’m not sure about the advisability of using this design for door-breaching. Why not use a “normal” shotgun with a breaching muzzle attachment? That way you have a proper sighted weapon immediately afterwards—when you may bloody well need it.

      • avatar2Wheels says:

        I don’t know if it’s better than a normal shotgun, but it’s the only halfway sensible role I can think of for something like this.

      • avatarDBally says:

        Step one: Get into one of the bulkier EOD suits.
        Step two: Try to properly aim anything bigger than a pistol that has a buttstock.(Rifle, Carbine, Average Shotgun with a buttstock.)
        Step three: Get told to do a test breaching run with a standard rifle.
        Step four: Fail.
        Step five: Get handed a Mossberg 500 with the chainsaw grip.
        Strp six: Rerun.
        Step seven: Pass because you can now ‘aim’.

        That’s where I find this gun useful.

    • avatarRichard K says:

      Just an FYI you can learn to shoot a shotgun from the hip….i was on the breach team while training for Afghanistan and you learned to shoot acurately out to around 30 yards….thats pretty decent for at the hip…but i think this was made more for the “cool factor”

  2. avatarsdog says:

    how does one actually aim this weapon, neat looking fail Mberg

    • avatarGossven says:

      Its for the “You don’t need to aim a shotgun” crowd.

      • avatarsdog says:

        ah yes i’m forgetting the unstoppable death ray status of shotgun blasts,he looks like he is aiming with the knuckles on his left hand.

  3. avatarCUJO THE DOG OF WAR says:

    Ok, first of all, that is NOT my Dad in the video! I have seen this shotgun and just see it as a novelty, just like the other version they have with the Roadblocker muzzle break that is copied after the .50 brakes on the Barrets. I would go with their regular fore end with the strap, at most, and I use to teach riot gun use. Anything blocking the aiming is not good, and the ergonomics of the chainsaw handle makes instinctual point shooting pretty much hindered. It sure ain’t going to fit in a backpack shotgun scabbard either. I’m not a real fan of the new railed fore ends either. I can really see my hand getting eaten up during recoil, and sometimes you don’t have the time to put on gloves. I say keep it simple and use a universal barrel band to hang a light onto the barrel. Keep the chainsaw handle for the real chainsaw, and don’t hang a five pound brake on either. And when you have to shoot, shoot, don’t talk!

  4. avatarDavid says:

    From the pictures that I have seen of it, the “Chainsaw” does not have any kind of barrel shroud or heat shield. Fire more than 10 rounds from it and you run a serious risk of burning the palm of your hand on the barrel. The only use I could see as being practical for this weapon would be 1-3 shots for breaching a door.

    It could take its place in a totally useless, but super tacticool safe and make a zombie hunter feel better about surviving his chances. It would probably need a light, laser and grip pod for the rails, bayonet, I-Pod dock and an ACOG to make it though.

    • avatarBig C says:

      I love your sense of humor. It may have been lost on others, but I love it. Don’t forget the cup holder on the other side for the latte with a spill proof top… Some people just don’t know how to spend money.

      By the way, I totally agree that this is an irresponsible design. Someone is going to get hurt.

  5. avatarKen says:

    Looks like something that came out of “Sons of Guns”.

  6. avatarTCBA_Joe says:

    There is no legitimate use for this. Developed by irresponsible idiots FOR irresponsible idiots.

    I’m surprised I haven’t seen this in a movie yet.

  7. avatarSteve says:

    I am hoping that this is a clever marketing gimmick to cater to the Shoot-holding-your-gun-Sideways Gangsta Thug market. If Hollywood can convince these bright sparks to hold their guns sideways, (thus precluding the possibility of an accurately aimed shot) then maybe Mossberg can get them to buy a shotgun that negates the typical advantages of a shotgun.

    So maybe this is really just one way that Mossberg is making the streets safer for police officers and the General public. If so, then I say Bravo!

  8. avatarRalph says:

    This is Mossy’s well-intentioned way of getting aroud some of the ATF’s more dubious shotgun regulations. There’s a reason why ATF doesn’t like front and rear handgrips on shotguns: they work. So Mossy put the grip on top. Nice try, good thought, but I’ll pass.

  9. avatarGossven says:

    There is only one firearm I’ve ever wanted with a chainsaw grip on it, the hand held mini gun from Terminator 2.

    http://www.imfdb.org/wiki/File:T2JDHandheldMinigun-1.jpg

  10. avatarDavid says:

    I finally got to watch the video. Anyone else notice the lack of trigger discipline?

  11. avatarBrad Kozak says:

    Crap. After the lead, I was expecting to see a Poulan chainsaw mated to a Mossberg up top. Shoot ’til you’re empty, then chop, chop. For something like that, a top fore grip would be the only way to keep from chopping your own fingers off. Color me “disappointed.”

  12. avatarEric S says:

    Ridiculous. That looked so awkward since he was actually trying to aim it so the shot wouldn’t take 20 takes.

  13. avatarDon Curton says:

    For a moment, before I saw the video, I had visions of this beast:

    http://www.coderetard.com/2008/08/08/pre-order-gears-of-war-2-exclusive-lancer-13999/

  14. avatarGreg in Allston says:

    Beside the fact that I’ve rarely seen such a completely stupid gun design. ripping off Gunny Ermey is soooo uncool. Epic fail Mossberg.

  15. avatarSean says:

    Shooting at wood at close range without eye protection.

    He’s a braver man than me.

  16. avatarMike says:

    Sounds like a lot of guys who wish they could afford one. Sour grapes, yeah?

  17. This shotgun is actually more useful than many of you may think- for persons with motor neuron diseases or a left-sided muscle weakness or atrophy secondary to a stroke, ALS or similar medical condition. It would enable such an individual to effectively use a shotgun as a defensive weapon within the confines of their own home. As a military disability lawyer, I have had several clients impaired in this manner who have loved the fact that they were able to effectively use this 12GA Mossberg at close range despite their physical impairment. Before anyone chimes in by suggesting a 20GA to recuce recoil , that does not compensate for the upper extremity weakness inherent in the conditions described above. Thus, for the special application described above, it is a fine weapon. v/r Jack Gately (www.gatelylawfirm.com)

  18. avatarNew_Shooter says:

    I am new to shooting and find this a great first shotgun for me. I have no other habits from sholder firing a shotgun so from the hip works for me. It cam with a decent flashlight and red laser sight. Pretty good aim from 25ft in a home defense situation. My state requires imminent danger for deadly force. If they dont stop after the first three less than lethal rounds I have three 00 buck. Then the teeth on the end of the barrel will hurt if I missed. Plus it is pretty intimidating looking.

  19. avatarKen says:

    Say whatever you want but I fired The mossburg chainsaw yesterday!!!! I hit every thing I aimed at.It was fun to shoot!!!!! I didn’t hurt myself. I didn’t BURN MY HAND after shooting this shotgun and NO PAIN IN MY SHOULDER!!!!!!!!!

  20. avatarMike from NC says:

    I don’t quite understand why people hate on this gun. First of all, if you want a Mossberg 500 with tactical rails on the fore grip and an 18.5 breacher barrel this is your only/best option. If you don’t want the chainsaw grip, its optional, take it off. Sure, you could buy a standard Mossberg 500 cruiser or persuader and add this fore grip (not the chainsaw grip) for an extra $40-60 (or whatever they cost) and put it on but you still wouldn’t have the breacher barrel. Again, this is your best option; least amount of mods, most cost effective. If you wanna run your mouth about the chainsaw grip, save it because its optional. Its like bitching about a pistol coming with a speed loader. If you don’t need it, don’t use it. Simple. Also, this nonsense about the gun not having a practical purpose is just moronic. Pistol grip pumps are small and get the job done in close combat situations such as home defense. No one is suggesting you go bird hunting with this thing. Obviously pistol grip shotguns are preference as some people prefer a full stock however does that make it necessary to bitch and moan online about it (“Wahhhh you like a pistol grip and I dont!”). Grow up. This weapon is perfect for home defense with or without the “chainsaw” grip. Bottom line: Defend your home the way that fits you and keep your close minded opinions to yourself.

  21. i want one for home defense

  22. avatarSeano says:

    I bought one a week ago, I love it, I recently added a pistol grip underneath the chainsaw grip (thanks to the rails) so now I can aim by holding on the bottom, are in quick reaction situation, like home defense, wield it around with the chainsaw grip, LOVE IT!!!!!

  23. With my Chainsaw loaded with slugs and shooting from the hip at 30′ I managed to place 5 rounds into center of mass (B 27-B Target) with a spread of 15 inches for the 5 rounds. I hardly think that is a stupid or useless gun. Loaded with No. 4 buck (2 3/4 shells), 5 rounds obliterated the B 27-B target center, still hitting mostly in a center of mass kill zone. Of course I did practice to the extent of 60 rounds before I paid attention to just how effective this little gun really is and fired off the aforementioned 10 rounds. Just don’t knock it if you haven’t shot it.

  24. avatarTyson says:

    It has its uses, it’s easy getting around small areas, and if you have nerve or tendon damage like me, much easier to pump. People are so scared of anything different, sheesh

  25. avatarshawnblc says:

    What an awesome home defense weapon. I’m not to fond of the chainsaw grip, but my wife loves the chainsaw grip, which is fine by me, and is an excellent home defense shotgun! Remember this is a single purpose shotgun, which is home defense, not turkey hunting. Excellent gun, excellent price point. To your families safety!

  26. avatarpeter says:

    When shooting from the hip, the general idea is to be good enough to hit your target from the hip (assuming you’re the good guy who cares what the target is).

    It is not to bring your head down, aim, then stand back up to fire. Either aim and fire or shoot from the hip. Do not do both. They simply do not mix.

  27. avatarCory B says:

    Considering 95% of home defense situations are within 7 yards why wouldn’t this be a great HD gun? I’m 6’1″ 230lbs… Not a huge guy and recoil isn’t a problem. It’s gonna stomp a little but I already know that… It won’t be a surprise in a HD situation. Some folks are mentioning 25 yards… Must be nice living in a 15,000sqft home, lol. I can hardly find a 15 yard shot in my home. Don’t like it? Don’t buy the damn thing.

  28. avatarMike B says:

    I bought one for home defense and plinking. Racking a scattergun is usually warning enough for an intruder. If it were not, I upped the intimidation level with a Black Ops dual recoil spring adjustable stock, replaced the chainsaw handle with a Mako flash light/ pistol foregrip and a couple of Kabar 5 inch blades to either side. Zombies, home intruders or coke cans…..I am ready for them all. For the record, I have been shooting twelves my whole life. The sissy stock is for my wife and daughter who do not handle the kick as well as I do.

  29. avatarfunky says:

    I have one of these, and it’s really nice for what it is. FOR WHAT IT IS.
    I can tell you from shooting it that the chainsaw grip makes it nice for leverage, and it’s meant for close quarters shooting, not for sniping out. Come on, until you’ve shot one, and a 12 gauge isn’t for everyone obviously, don’t knock it. It’s a BLAST

  30. avatarKen says:

    Well I got it for the wife she loves the dam thing but I get to it first when theres a bump in the night I reload my own so I have some hairy crap coming out of the barrel, used primers first 2 rounds a slug next 00 filling the rest of the tube.And I can get to those in 3.7 seconds . Its all about how you train with it and I agree with those that say if you have not used it do not pass judgement you have no idea how this thing gets the JOB done.

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