Gun Review: Serbu SUPER-SHORTY Shotgun

 

Serbu_SS_lead-pmg

For nearly 20 years, Mark Serbu’s SUPER-SHORTY has been the standard-bearer among the super-compact shotgun set. Built from either a Mossberg 500 or a Remington 870 that started life with a pistol grip, the S-S is considered an “Any Other Weapon” (AOW) under NFA law, meaning a $5 tax stamp instead of $200 as with other NFA items. I’m really not sure if most people buy these just for screwing around and having fun or if it’s for more practical purposes, but I do know that the S-S is capable of filling both roles. . .

First, yet again I need to thank Sharp Shooting Indoor Range & Gun Shop in Spokane, WA for assisting me with a review. Last time it was use of their south bay (with lights out) for the flash hider shootout. This time, thanks to Sharp Shooting’s manufacturer’s license and SOT, Serbu was able to send the SUPER-SHORTY to them for testing and inspection. As long as I remained on Sharp Shooting’s premises under their watch, there was no need to transfer the S-S into my name and wait the ~8 months on the tax stamp. Once again, they were kind enough to give me a little alone time in their south bay for some shooting (gun) and shooting (camera). Thanks again.

SUPER-SHORTY

If there’s any doubt as to whether the SUPER-SHORTY uses a proprietary barrel or a cut-down factory barrel, the half-missing “2” in the “2 3/4 or 3″” roll mark should provide the answer. The machining here is smooth and clean and the radius on the OD is a nice touch. There is no front bead or other sight on the S-S.

Serbu_SS_barrel

My sample is built from a Remington 870 and, if you’re familiar with that shotgun (and you probably are), you’ll be right at home with the S-S. Same safety, same trigger, same action lock at the front of the trigger guard, same loading gate, etc. This 6.5″ barrel version holds just 2 shells in the tube — whether 2.75″ or 3″ — while the 13.75″ barrel flavor holds 4.

Serbu_SS_under

Where Serbu really comes in and makes functional changes is to the forend and action bars. Gone is the standard, horizontal grip and in its place is a vertical foregrip.

Serbu_SS_pivot

It locks firmly in vertical orientation, held in place by a stiff spring, and pulling down on it allows it to clear the locking notch and fold flat to get it out of the way.

Serbu_SS_right

It’s possible to run the S-S with the foregrip folded, but it isn’t the design intention and it’ll abrade the bottom of the receiver a bit.

Serbu_SS_right2

Flipping the grip from folded to vertical orientation is simple and rapid, requiring nothing more than rotating it downwards until it clicks. The checkering feels nice; grippy, precise, but comfortable[-ish] even when the recoil is slamming it into your hand.

Serbu_SS_vfg

What isn’t so comfortable is the included pistol grip. The plastic is hard and slick, and the shape manages to direct all of the recoil force into the web of your hand and the meaty part of your thumb there. Overall this gun is awesome and a ton of fun to shoot — oh…whoops…spoiler alert! — but the factory grip just sucks. Luckily, there’s no shortage of aftermarket options such as those from Hogue, Knoxx, and others.

Serbu_SS_grip

On The Range

There ain’t a lot of shotguns that’ll fit in a backpack, but the Serbu SUPER-SHORTY will perform the trick with room to spare. Overall length with 6.5″ barrel is only 16.5″. Small size lends to practical applications, as the S-S can bring 12-gauge thump just about anywhere and can easily maneuver inside of tight quarters.

A bit of bear defense in the woods? Sure. The short length and 4.5-lb weight won’t drag you down. Home, office, or vehicle defense? Definitely. The 6.5″ barrel makes for a great shot spread from almost point blank out to 7 yards.

Serbu_SS_target

At 7 yards, birdshot escaped the sides of the torso silhouette, but not by much. I’d guess 90% of the shot hit that sketchy looking, blocky character above. At 7 yards, max dram #4 buckshot was entirely in the silhouette but for one pellet. At 3 yards, a ~12″-diameter spread was still achieved and all pellets were comfortably inside the lines.

Serbu_SS_target-close

Sure, 2+1 rounds may be a little limiting if you’re on Yogi’s pic-a-nic menu, and shooting slugs out of this thing may just hurt more than being mauled by a bear, but overall I still think it’s a practical application for the S-S. And longer-barreled versions do hold more shells. But inside of a small room or hallway, the S-S would be as intimidating and devastating as it is maneuverable.

On the fun front, it’s fun. It’s a blast to shoot in every sense. While the S-S may be only 16.5″ in length, its occasional fireballs have no trouble exceeding that.

SUPER-SHORTY

With the torturous pistol grip, I found the recoil best tamed by my left hand. I locked my elbow and pulled forwards on that vertical foregrip as much as possible. During all of my shooting, my left hand — which is one of my favorites or at least in the top 2 — never really hurt like my right did, but as I write this a full week later it’s the left that’s still noticeably sore.

Birdshot was fine. Especially my reloads, which are pretty light since they’re usually just run through an over/under for sporting clays and introducing new shooters to shotguns. I put 75 rounds of this birdshot through the S-S in one sitting and my hands were still mostly functional.

Serbu_SS_logo

Much to my surprise, the max dram #4 buckshot from S-S wasn’t so bad, either. I’d actually practice with it. Magnum slugs, on the other hand (the right hand), left me feeling pretty much brutalized. In the immortal words of Yung Humma, they smanged it. Gloves wouldn’t be a bad idea, but a better idea would be reserving the slugs for when your friends ask to shoot the SUPER-SHORTY — and they will! — or generally reserving them for when whatever’s on the other end of the shotgun is worse than the punishment the grip delivers to your hand.

Again, much of this would be alleviated by an aftermarket grip. If you really wanted to you could probably order it with a stock instead, which would make it an SBS ($200 tax). As Sharp Shooting has its FFL-07 as well as SOT, they threw on a Knoxx SpecOps stock for R&D purposes and that definitely turned the S-S into a recoil pussy cat (seen in the video).

Conclusions

Overall the SUPER-SHORTY is a kick to shoot and I had a blast testing it out. It belches fire, bucks like a bronco, and devastates targets with a torso-width spread at close range like nothing else I’ve shot. Plus, as it’s likely the shortest pump shotgun on the market, it may just fit in your briefcase.

Serbu_SS_left

I put my weight into that foregrip and ran the action like a rented mule, but it looks like it’s there for the long haul. It even ran my reloads with only one shell getting a bit stuck in the chamber at the very end, and I rarely bother to resize the brass (it’s typically only run through the same O/U so it isn’t necessary). Basically, it works like a pump gun should.

Specifications: Serbu SUPER-SHORTY

Caliber: 12-Gauge
Capacity: 2+1 to 4+1, based on length
Barrel Length: 6.5″ to 13.75″
Overall Length: As short as 16.5″
Weight: 4.5 to 6 lbs
MSRP: $1,050 to $1,225 depending on gun (Mossy 500 or Rem 870) and options (such as breacher muzzle device)

Ratings (Out of Five Stars): 

Accuracy: * * * * * or zero stars
I have no idea how to rate the S-S for accuracy. On one hand, with its super rapid shot spread it supports what’s usually a myth that you can’t miss with a shotgun. At short distances, it’s Feinstein’s nightmare come true of a gun that can be shot from the hip and put lead on target. On the other hand, it’s going to be useless much past 10-15 yards other than with slugs, and without sights it’s going to be hard to hit with slugs at much range anyway.

Ergonomics: * * *
Not the SUPER-SHORTY’s strong point, thanks only to the pistol grip. Otherwise it’s a short, lightweight 870 with a vertical foregrip and that’s all good by me.

Reliability: * * * * 
It hung up only once at the end of the shooting session which I chalk up to non-resized brass on my reloads in addition to a new shooter pulling the trigger. There was an incident of it ejecting the empty shell and the live one on deck, which I think was due to me rolling the gun onto its side too much while cycling the action back. Worth noting, though, as it’s an easy thing to do with such a small, light, pistol-gripped shotgun.

Trigger: * * * * 
It’s nice. Better than average for a pump gun. Try not to flinch.

Customization: * * * *
Grips will be the popular replacement item, and there are plenty of options out there. A sling is an obvious choice as well. Many aftermarket parts like upgrades for trigger, safety selector, loading gate, extractor, side saddles, etc will work on the S-S. A side saddle that includes a top rail would allow for a laser, reflex sight, or other optic…just don’t let it recoil into your face.

Overall: * * * * 
More fun than a barrel of monkeys — even if they bite your hands a bit — and a real head-turner at the range. A fire-breathing, midget dragon that just might have some practical purpose as well.

comments

  1. avatar Rog Uinta says:

    I dunno…with only 2+1 capacity, I’ll rather just stick with a sawn-off double.

    1. avatar JWM says:

      With just a little practice a tube mag has unlimited capacity.

    2. avatar DickDanger says:

      Get the best of both worlds; A sawn off Chiappa triple threat. Three shots without having to work a pump.

    3. avatar int19h says:

      The catch is, a sawn-off double is an SBS. If you’re okay with paying the tax, I suppose it’s fine (and it’ll still end up being cheaper than this). But several states have blanket bans on SBS. This thing does not qualify as an SBS in at least some of them (Washington, for one), because it didn’t start its life with a stock, and hence is not considered a shotgun to begin with.

      Now if someone out there is making a double with a pistol grip, then it could be made into a similar gadget. But I’m not aware of such a thing.

      1. avatar lolinski says:

        Something similar to the COP derringer would be nice. 4 barrels in 12 gauge, would be heavier than the pump but would have double the capacity and be shorter.

        You could make it as an AOW and avoid the SBS tax stamp.

      2. avatar Mike says:

        While in Cabelas I saw a double short barrel shotgun with no stock.. It was black powder so was not a “firearm”. I think the only was to get a “Howdah” gun.
        Looks fun, but a toy with no practical use.

    4. avatar Tim Going says:

      Easy solution–Aguila Minishells. Then its a 3+1 and your still putting out 11 pellets of #4 and #1 buck. Not quite the power of a full size shell, but staying inside that 10 foot range….yowza…

    5. avatar dave hardan says:

      I can’t believe this has been around for so long, & I didn’t know about it. Imagine, ( for example ) a 30 year house painter who didn’t know about painting with air compressor !

  2. avatar Bill Kohnke says:

    You might try the Shockwave Raptor mare’s leg grip, or take a lower hold on the pistol grip in order to transfer more of the recoil into the palm of your hand. Low recoil buckshot is what I recommend to my customers.

    1. avatar Dryw says:

      The Pachmayr Vindicator Presentation grip helps absorb some of the brutality.

      I’ve personally found the Hogue OverMolded Tamer to be the best of the bunch in terms of “softening”. In reality… there’s no true soft with the Serbu… just gradations of discomfort. The Hogue has a more severe angle to it so eye-level aiming is more of a challenge.

      Suppose it depends on your own preference.

  3. avatar JWM says:

    Now that’s the gun to answer a knock at the door at 2 am with. Or to reach for when sleeping in a tent in the boonies and you hear something snuffling around outside. Headlight and super shorty. Win, win.

    1. avatar Geoff PR says:

      I’d LOVE to see Mark Serbu do on of these with that scattergun suppressor and use the extra space to make it a five or six shot.

      THAT would be AWESOME for home defense…

      1. avatar JWM says:

        I love a shotgun. Especially a pump. The stockless pistol grip shotgun, imho, is strictly limited to close, house or tent, range for self defense. It’s such a single purpose weapon that I’ve never bothered to buy one.

        1. avatar int19h says:

          It is, however, nearly perfect in this role. Just look at those spread patterns…

          If I had a task of making this perfect, I’d ditch the pump and just make it double barrel (or triple… or quadruple… when barrels are this short the extra weight is not that big), so that you can unload it as fast as semi-auto. It’d also make it shorter overall since there’s no need to make room for the action. Oh, and stick a cheap but very bright and narrowly focused LED underneath the barrel, as a kind of a crude laser pointer (with this kind of spread you don’t need a laser).

        2. avatar JWM says:

          The only real draw back to a break action shotgun is that once you’ve fired your 2-3 shots you have to break it to reload. A pump can be kept topped off so long as you don’t shoot dry. And in a pinch, if you do shoot dry it’s quicker to pop a round into the chamber and be ready to go.

          I have seen purpose built double barreled 12 and 20 bore pistols back in the 60’s. Must have been before 68.

        3. avatar Mike says:

          I bought one, after shooting it a few times I put a stock on it.

  4. avatar PeterW says:

    If one of these crosses the border into California we might fall into the sea

    1. avatar JWM says:

      I can swim.

    2. avatar Tex300BLK says:

      That’s a bad thing?

    3. avatar WedelJ says:

      Don’t tempt me.

    4. avatar FTA says:

      Pretty sure we can legally own these in CA. AOWs are allowed with a stamp.

      1. avatar PeterW says:

        A ‘concealable’ short barrel shotgun with a 2nd handgrip? I’ll believe it when I see it.

        1. avatar int19h says:

          In California, this is considered a short-barreled shotgun, because their state law uses its own definition of what is an SBS that goes beyond what the federal law says. Specifically:

          “short-barreled shotgun” means any of following: … a firearm that is designed or redesigned to fire a fixed shotgun shell and has a barrel or barrels of less than 18 inches in length.”

          In contrast, in federal law, a shotgun must have a stock (“designed to be fired from the shoulder”). So if it starts its life with a pistol grip, it’s not a shotgun. And therefore when you shorten the barrel, it’s still not a shotgun, short-barreled or otherwise. Some states have copied those definitions from NFA into their own state laws, and so they also do not consider Serbu an SBS, but California isn’t one of them.

      2. avatar Jack says:

        yes, it is a CA-defined SBS, but as a federally-registered AOW, it is exempt from CA’s SBS law.

        ATF has allowed the transfer of SSS’s to CA residents from CA SOTs on Form 4’s and has allowed the making of SSS-type AOWs by CA residents on Form 1’s.

        1. avatar int19h says:

          How does AOW classification on the federal level exempt it? Is there some CA law to that effect?

        2. avatar Jack says:

          yes, there is a CA-specific law that exempts federally-defined AOWs from CA’s SBS law.

          16590. As used in this part, “generally prohibited weapon” means
          any of the following:
          (t) A short-barreled rifle or short-barreled shotgun, as
          prohibited by Section 33215.
          (v) An unconventional pistol, as prohibited by Section 31500.

          A Super-Shorty is both an unconventional pistol and an SBS in CA.

          but the below section of PC exempts those that are AOWs that are properly registered.

          17710. (a) The provisions listed in Section 16590 do not apply to
          “any other weapon” as defined in subsection (e) of Section 5845 of
          Title 26 of the United States Code, which is in the possession of a
          person permitted to possess the weapons under the federal Gun Control
          Act of 1968 (Public Law 90-618), as amended, and the regulations
          issued pursuant thereto.

    5. avatar Bill Kohnke says:

      The last I heard, AOWs are legal in CA.

  5. avatar Bungameng says:

    “I’m really not sure if most people buy these just for screwing around and having fun or if it’s for more practical purposes, but I do know that the S-S is capable of filling both roles. . .”

    I actually learned about existence of this weapon from a guy who CCs it. He carries it when he expects trouble, like coming to a woods cabin after long time (with possibility of finding someone inside). Usually loaded with rubber, and lead being loaded as a back-up in pistol. Which makes sense in the Czech Republic where the bad guys are unlikely to pack heat.

  6. avatar DickDanger says:

    So let’s see if I understand this correctly: If it’s a shotgun that was produced with a pistol grip and a barrel under 18″, it’s considered an AOW? And does one have to go through the same ol’ red tape with an NFA item as an AOW, or can I go down to my LGS and after a 10 NICS check, walk out with it?

    1. avatar Jeremy S says:

      The SUPER-SHORTY is an NFA item. It isn’t classified as a Short Barreled Shotgun, but rather as an Any Other Weapon. All of the NFA regs and hoops apply, except an AOW is only a $5 tax stamp.

      1. avatar MeRp says:

        If I’m not mistaken the specific attributes that make this an AOW are the vertical foregrip and the fact that it is both a shotgun and has a “concealable” length (ie under 26″ overall). The firearms (they’re not “shotguns” according to the NFA) that are modified into these are longer than 26″ and do not have the vertical foregrip, and so are not NFA-regulated firearms.

        1. avatar Jeremy S says:

          Actually, these laws are really confusing and little of what you wrote is technically accurate haha. No worries. None of it makes any sense anyway. But here are just a couple notes…

          * a shotgun is defined in part as a gun that’s designed to be fired from the shoulder. As the S-S was created from a firearm with a pistol grip and no shoulder stock, it was never actually a “shotgun” and this is why it cannot be a “Short Barreled Shotgun” or count as a “Weapon made from a shotgun.”

          * even without the vertical foregrip, it would still be an Any Other Weapon due to its smooth bore and, as you said, size that makes it capable of being concealed on your person (under 26″ OAL). It isn’t a “pistol” or “revolver” because of the smooth bore, so even if it was “designed to be fired when held in one hand” it’s going to qualify as an AOW. …The vertical foregrip puts a normal pistol (any normal handgun w/ rifled barrel) into the AOW category because it makes it so it’s no longer designed to be fired with one hand, which means it’s no longer technically a pistol. In the case of the S-S, the foregrip doesn’t change its classification one way or the other. As for the “firearm” category into which those pistol-gripped, smooth-bore guns with OALs above 26″ fall, they would not be NFA-regulated even with a vertical forward grip since, again, that only applies to guns considered to be “pistols” or “revolvers” (handguns w/ rifled barrels). And FWIW the Taurus Judge and S&W Governor, btw, aren’t AOWs or SBSs because they both have rifled barrels and can fire normal, single-projectile cartridges.

          * if Serbu took a shotgun (a gun with a shoulder stock) and swapped the grip out and shortened the barrel, it would fall into the Short Barreled Shotgun category since it would be a weapon made from a shotgun. Because they use firearms that started life with a pistol grip and were never actually considered “shotguns” by the Federales in the first place, the SUPER-SHORTYs are AOWs.

        2. avatar int19h says:

          Jeremy has explained it in detail, but the TL;DR version is that the only thing that makes it an AOW is that the overall length is under 26″. If you keep the barrels long enough that this is not the case, then it is neither AOW nor a shotgun nor a pistol (nor, obviously, a rifle) – it’s classed simply as “weapon” by ATF, and doesn’t have any special regulations other than those applying to firearms in general.

          There’s another neat hack along these lines: you take a not-shotgun-according-to-ATF shotgun (the one that was manufactured with a pistol grip), put the Raptor bird’s head grip on it, and then trim the barrel down to 14″. The resulting firearm has an overall length of 26.5″, and hence it’s still not an AOW! Here’s what this looks like:

          http://shockwavetechnologies.com/site/?page_id=88

          Note that all this (as well as Jeremy’s detailed explanation) pertains to Federal law only. States can and do ban or otherwise regulate SBS separately, and they may have their own definition of what it is, which is not necessarily identical to ATF’s.

  7. avatar Vern says:

    Does anyone make anything like this in a 410, or anything for that matter for personal defense or ???

    1. avatar Former Water Walker says:

      Yeah Vern-a Judge or a Governor with a 6″ barrel…

    2. avatar Former Water Walker says:

      I see S&W governor does not have a 6″ barrel-so just the 6 and half inch Taurus…

      1. avatar Timmy! says:

        I have a 6″ barrel Judge which I intend to open carry on January 1, 2016… because I can (then).

    3. avatar Jim says:

      My father has a similar sized, single shot .410 that is well over 70 years old. I believe it is an H&R HandyGun. It was used as a snake gun. The family member who owned had it probably since at least WWII and was required to register it after the laws passed in the 1960’s.

      We had to go through a lengthy process to legalize ownership after the original owner passed away without transferring ownership through the $5 tax stamp.

  8. avatar Joe R. says:

    Good review. Nice to check in with something I wanted to check-out, and strangely the magazine capacity was a factor that was overlooked due to the drool factor.

    Thanks again.

  9. avatar actionphysicalman says:

    This gun has me pondering more than most. I don’t like it but I want one.

  10. avatar KingSarc48625 says:

    I’ve always wanted one of these for shits-n-giggles. Not enough to wait for the damn ATF paperwork though.

    1. avatar Stinkeye says:

      Yeah, if the NFA went away and I could pick one up and walk out the door with it, I’d probably buy one tomorrow. Looks like a tremendous amount of fun, and has some practical use as a home-defense gun. But I’m not really interested in getting involved in that whole NFA mess.

    2. avatar Jeremy S says:

      At least it’s only a $5 stamp. Wait times these days are as short as 3 months and up to like 8. Once Form 4s are available for 3-file, maybe it’ll get shorter.

  11. avatar Anon in CT says:

    I believe that in Canada that would be an Unrestricted Weapon, meaning it could be carried in the woods as a bear gun, or in an bush plane, etc. Unlike a pistol, which is a Restricted Weapon, and thus must be in a safe or at the range. Period.

    1. avatar WedelJ says:

      In Canadia, one could put a stock on it and not have to worry about legal issues.

  12. avatar Tom in Oregon says:

    That bottom pic with the fireball?
    Turn it 90 degrees and it looks like a nuke going off!

  13. avatar Former Water Walker says:

    Hickok has a video on this. I guess if you’re into robbing banks…

  14. avatar Capybara says:

    I own a slightly different AOW, also Rem 870-based with a 12″ barrel. Mine holds 4+1 so it is a bit more practical, albeit it is also slightly longer than the Serbu. I put a Speedfeed Birdshead grip on it, didn’t even shoot it once with the same wrist breaker grip that comes on the Serbu as I knew better. IMHO, these are a terrible HD gun as you really can’t aim them, you can only point them. The pattern on the Serbu probably opens up quicker than mine since it is a shorter barrel. The sound would be deafening and disorienting indoors, you only have a so-so chance of hitting your target. A pistol would be better or a regular 18″ barrel shotgun.

    It’s a fun range toy and yes, I do let friends and family shoot it. I start them off with some 7.5 or 8 light trap loads, them some 00 buck, then a couple of Magnum slugs. To me, the recoil is negligible as the birdshead lets the recoil slide it through your hand a bit.

    BTW Peter W, I live in California and my FFL07/SOT02 is right up the road, AOWs are one of the only California legal NFA items. Bet you also didn’t know that you can legally own an SBS or SBR in California, but the catch is they have to be C&R, which means that they were NFA registered at least 50 years ago. Good luck, finding those is almost impossible, but if you could, you could own an SBS or SBR as a Californian.

    I would only buy an AOW like this if your collection already has most of your other bases covered. I don’t regret mine but it is kind of a novelty gun.

  15. avatar Gunr says:

    This thing would be great for home defense, however I think the capacity is a little shy. The could have added another 3″ to the barrel and tube to get the capacity up to 4 rounds.
    Another thing to ponder, would you want to leave this thing laying around with the gun cocked, and a round in the chamber? If not, you only have 2 rounds available for instant use, something to think about!
    I wonder if anybody has ever converted something like this to use a removable box magazine, that would hold 5 rounds, or so? It’s probably not practical, you would need to weld some kind of magazine well on to the receiver.
    The price seems a bit excessive to me. Does it really take another five or six hundred bucks, added to the $500 price of the original gun, to make this into what we are seeing?

    1. avatar Jeremy S says:

      The could have added another 3″ to the barrel and tube to get the capacity up to 4 rounds.

      Yeah, that’s an option. This is the shortest shotgun on the market version, but they will make it longer at your request and the capacity goes up accordingly.

      They have used a receiver that accepts Saiga mags to run 5-, 10-, or even 12-round removable magazines, but it isn’t readily available for order on the Serbu website at this time.

      I’m not sure how much of the cost is related to NFA expenses and whether there are additional hoops, taxes, etc as a manufacturer in addition to the excise taxes and such that apply to normal firearms…

      1. avatar Stinkeye says:

        Wouldn’t that vertical foregrip and a long Saiga magazine interfere with each other when you tried to pump it? The 10-round Saiga mags have a pretty pronounced curve, and it seems like that front grip or your hand would whack the mag every time you racked it.

        1. avatar Jeremy S says:

          It’s close, but apparently it works:

        2. avatar Geoff PR says:

          Brownell’s has a Mossy magazine conversion kit that might work, perhaps Dyspeptic could comment…

          Mossberg 500 Shotgun Kit w/ Magazine, 10 Rds

          Mfr Part: AT05100

          http://www.brownells.com/shotgun-parts/magazine-tube-parts/magazine-tube-extensions/mossberg-500-magazine-conversion-kits-prod57376.aspx

    2. avatar Martin B says:

      Seems to me a hacksaw is a bit cheaper.

    3. avatar int19h says:

      Better yet, make it bullpup. That’s at least one more shell right there.

  16. avatar John S says:

    Why the repeated trope about the short barrel enlarging the pattern? That’s not true. Pattern size is due to barrel construction and choke– not length. Shotgun barrels are long for sighting moving targets, not for tightening patterns.

    1. avatar Jeremy S says:

      I understand what you’re saying here, and maybe the barrel ID is larger at 6.5″ than it is in a typical cylinder bore barrel, but I’ve shot a lot of shotguns and I’ve never seen shot spread this wide this fast before. So maybe it’s the short barrel and maybe it’s a larger ID (I didn’t measure), but it damn sure spreads out fast.

  17. avatar Maestro says:

    https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/06/f3/50/06f35021ef68b7e7f865e7c5452a00eb.jpg

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CwlasVFx7fo

    Thats the art i would prefer and an more ergonomic repeating grip on front + led light.

    And as an freak give me 3,5 inch magnum option

    http://i0.kym-cdn.com/photos/images/masonry/000/271/698/97e.gif

  18. avatar TruthTellers says:

    I’d like to see Serbu come out with a shorty model based on the Ithaca Model 37. The Ithaca is a bottom ejector and I’ve read that they feed and eject the 1.75″ Aguila mini shells fine. If Serbu makes an Ithaca shorty, it’d be able to hold five of those mini shells and that’s five shots of pretty formidable firepower when the whole package is taken into account.

    1. avatar Stinkeye says:

      Does anybody make a Model 37 action that comes as a pistol-grip only shotgun? I think that’s key to why these aren’t classified as short-barreled shotguns, but rather as AOWs. If it comes from the factory with a stock on it, you’d be stuck making it into an SBS (and adding the $200 tax stamp to the price).

    2. avatar Kentuckyshooter says:

      I am having a JC Higgins made into a super shorty,you can get away calling it a other gun if the pistol grip bolt is permanent made to the receiver(bolt welded in on the inside of receiver) as far as people talking about ,there are company’s that sell 21/4 shell in # 9-8-71/2 6-4 lead shot and i have some 21/4 that shoots 780 fps rubber ball at 6 per shell.A gun like this has one purpose =hom protection.Like in many of the responces ,the perso mentioned a max of 10 feet so there woulg br no reason to shoot slugs out of it,unless you reload your own as there is no reason to beat your self up,I have made 21/2 cast molded foster slugs with just enough powder to punch through 2 sheets of 3/4” drywall,now that is plenty,not much kick at all.

  19. avatar Kendahl says:

    I’ve read repeatedly that shotguns with just a pistol grip are hard to aim and recoil is vicious. For a combat shotgun, whether to carry in the woods or fight bad guys, I would want a semi-auto with an 18-1/2 inch barrel and a magazine that extends all the way to the muzzle. Forget the bird shot. You need pellets heavy enough to penetrate to vital organs or slugs.

    1. avatar Gunr says:

      In the video, the gun is also fired with a stock. Don’t know if it’s ridged, collapsible, or folding. Myself, I would like a folding stock that folds to the port side, so as not to interfere wit the ejection port etc. Still would want another 3″ added to the business end, giving you a true 3 round capacity. I believe it is risky business to keep one in the chamber, with the gun cocked, even if the safety is on.
      The only way I would want to have one in the pipe, is if it were like the old Win. 97, with an exposed hammer, that could be lowered.

      1. avatar int19h says:

        The moment you add any stock, folding or otherwise, it’s an SBS.

        I suppose you could add the SIG brace, though. Just don’t shoulder it while anyone’s looking (aside from the target, that is).

  20. avatar Anonymous says:

    Pass. Needs linked 12GA shot shells hanging down from underneath + buttstock. Needs to be at least… the very least… semi-automatic. Needs large durable slings for wrapping around the back/neck to support the weight of one in each hand.

  21. avatar Royal Tony says:

    I can attest to the shittiness of that pistol grip. I purchased a mossy 500 with the same one attached back when I didn’t know any better. I remember describing the feeling of 00 buck with that thing as “Dolph Lundgren karate chopping between your thumb and index finger”. Couldn’t imagine it getting any better with a tiny 870.

  22. avatar David P. says:

    I have one of these because it was as close as we could get to a SBS in Indiana until a month ago. I am sure it would work for self defense (there is even a company that makes a holster) but I have a couple other choices up that list, not a discredit to the platform just a personal choice. I don’t live in bear country so that is out.
    But the best thing I have found to do with it, BY FAR, is to offer to let a new shooter try it.(I have a private range on my property so I don’t worry about the gray area of what constitutes possession of letting someone else shoot it). I have not had a single person turn it down. I have even started a couple people with it because they were worried about recoil. I would let them shoot the s-s then tell them that the “standard” guns will be a pussy cat to it. (I do have them wear mechanix Impact gloves to take the sting out). The typical response when they get ready to leave after their first day is “can I come shoot again and can I bring a friend”.

    This is how transition people from new shooter to new gun owner to someone who will put gun rights as top priority in the next election

  23. avatar ValleyForge77 says:

    Serbu Shorty = $1,050 to $1,225

    Watching the S-man’s reaction when shooting magnum slug = Priceless

    1. avatar Jeremy S says:

      You should see the other guy.

  24. avatar Pro2Aguy says:

    If money were no object I would love to own a lot of guns that “for me” are just out of my reach and don’t make $$$ sense–this is just such a case…I would much rather spend a Grand on something else but can totally get the attraction here. Looks like a fair bit of gunsmithing (welding) and the like went into it to “stuff” so much in a small package to be sure.

  25. avatar Sean in Tampa says:

    Wait, these are made here in Tampa? I’ve never heard of them.

  26. avatar Youzernayme says:

    Greetings from Post Falls, Jeremy! I like that there’s a contributor from the Great Northwest
    on my favorite gun site.
    That looks like a good time. Maybe do some one handed personal clay throwing.
    I don’t like the Sharp Shooters too much. Prefer Center Target or to take a drive out of town.

    1. avatar Jeremy S says:

      Howdy 🙂 . Yeah, if you check out basically any of my other gun reviews you’ll see I’m almost always out in the woods, meaning various National Forest land NE of you. Sharp Shooting is my indoor range of choice around here because I’ve known the folks there for a long time and they’re top notch. I also enjoy the fun shoots, and often do pistol accuracy targets there. I’ll be visiting the Mica range more often for long-range work (was there a couple weeks ago hitting the 1/2 mile steel with my AR), since longer ranges like that can be a tricky to come by out in the woods.

  27. avatar Cameron b says:

    If one minted this to the underside of an AR how many stamps would they need?

    1. avatar Timmy! says:

      Ooh! Now that is the thing about which I am talking!

    2. avatar Jeremy S says:

      I believe in that case the AR becomes a shoulder stock for the S-S and you’d need to register the S-S as an SBS. It wouldn’t change the classification of the AR at all.

  28. avatar AUGrad06 says:

    Ok, pretty cool weapon, but here’s where I get hung up. It costs over $1,000. Yeah, the stamp is only $5, but still that means your into the gun for over $1,000. Why would I not buy an 870, for around $300 and then pay $200 tax stamp to turn it into an SBR? $500ish What am I missing?

    1. avatar int19h says:

      You’d do so if your state outright bans SBS, but doesn’t ban this kind of AOW.

      1. avatar Jeremy S says:

        Yeah, that’d be a good reason. I live in Washington and Shorted Barreled Shotguns (SBS) are not legal here, but AOWs are.

        Also, AUGrad, you may be overestimating just how short you can make the gun without modifying it like Serbu has. They’ve modified the action bars, magazine tube, and more…done some welding (bracket from barrel to support mag tube, action bar re-working and VFG)…etc to get it this sort. I think you’d be stuck with more like a 14″ barrel if you simply chopped it down to in front of the factory mag tube support.

        1. avatar JWM says:

          A full size 500 pump with the barrel shortened to 14 inches and either a youth model stock or one of those telescoping AR style stocks would be a dandy house gun. And if you could do that without xtra hoops to jump thru other than buying the gun, really cool.

        2. avatar Jeremy S says:

          Well, there would be hoops. You’d have to file a Form 1 to turn it into an SBS if you wanted to chop the barrel down under 18.5″…

  29. avatar Mike Senn says:

    I’ve got two of the Mossberg versions. One is the original and the second is a custom job by Mark Serbu and holds 3 in the magazine, one in the chamber. He built me that as a gator gun when I’m kayaking. It surely provides a piece of mind. Haven’t had to use it for anything but fun so far.

  30. avatar Tom in Georgia says:

    Feel free to correct me if I’m wrong, but part of Serbu’s price includes the $200 that THEY have to pay ATF for actually MAKING the gun an AOW, which is of course passed on to the consumer. The $5 AOW tax, is of course for the transfer. I’ve known about the Serbu for some time, and they seem pretty neat guns. The prices have gone up on them quite a bit over the years, though. But that’s inflation for you. Wish I’d bought one way back when they were around $600ish.

    Tom

    1. avatar Jack says:

      nope. Serbu does not pay $200 to make an AOW. they are a licensed 07 manufacturer with an SOT. they pay $1000/year for the SOT and therefore do not have to pay a tax to make each AOW on a Form 2.

      transfers from Serbu to the end-buyer incur a $5 tax on a Form 4.

  31. avatar Fred W. Smith says:

    Looking for information about holster for Serbu Super Shorty that “David P” mentioned on Aug 12, 2015.
    I’m aware of SKT Industries AOW holster but suspect that they are out of business as I have not been
    able to contact them via phone or email over past six months.

    TIA
    fred

    1. avatar Jeremy S says:

      I’d suggest emailing or calling Serbu. I bet they have a good idea of what holsters are available for the super shorty and where to find them…

  32. avatar Rem870 says:

    That Remington 870 super shorty looks awesome! I always wanted to have one.

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