No, Iíve always liked my 500 with the only real shortfall being that you canít extend the mag tube like you can on an 870. The 20Ē guns are just that bit too long so when I saw the 590A1 could have a +2 mag tube extension it was ďsoldĒ so the question was what to do with the 500? I had debated selling it but hell, with Obama President who really thinks selling anything is a good idea? I mean, pretty soon a Red Rider will be called an ďassaultĒ BB gun. Besides, I always liked the ATI stock being a quick pull away from a pistol grip.
Anyway, I had shot the 500 with just the pistol grip and it can be a jarring to the wrist with high brass loads. As much as everyone seems to love the Mossberg safety for a rifle stock and the Rem for a pistol grip, I just never liked the speed-feed stock so I planned to put the ATI from the 500 onto my 590 and Iíd keep the lighter 500 in pistol grip form and then I saw the Raptor Grip. Maybe thatíd be the answer?
The main goal is to make the lighter 500 as handy as possible but Iíve always struggled with the notion of hip shooting since even a shot gun needs to be eye level unless breaching. The site http://shockwavetechnologies.com
indicates that if your state law allows, a gun originally fitted with a pistol grip can be shortened to as little as 26Ē OAL. Not sure if Iíd do that but it is interesting.
Measurements were as follows:
With just ATI pistol grip = 27.5Ē
Extended ATI stock = 39Ē
Collapsed ATI stock = 35.25Ē
Raptor Grip = 31Ē
As you can see from the pictures, the raptor grip is even less sloped than the 590ís speed-feed stock so I was a bit worried that itíd be too much to handle while aiming under heavy loads. After testing the relaxed angle is less punishing on the wrist than just a pistol grip but you do need to be careful under hot loads to keep a firm hold. To get a decent sight picture I held the rear of the grip 2-3 inches away from my cheek and even a couple of 3Ē mag 00 buck loads were tolerable. With bird loads or reduced recoil buck, it was downright pleasant to shoot and an improvement over the pistol grip. The texture was good and had decent grip but Iím not sure how itíd be in the wet.
Overall, I like the angle and the shape of the birdís head, if I confirm the legality, Iíll probably have the barrel cut to match the mag tube and itíll be a nearly perfect truck gun. Thankfully, mine has the strap on the pump handle and I really think that is a plus for shooting either type of pistol grip since you can keep forward pressure to reduce recoil. If you plan to shoot and aim but without a stock, Iíd recommend it as a nice feature. Wearing gloves with good grip is smart too as a smack in the face wouldnít be too nice.
Is it staying on the gun? Yep, I like this setup and it does feel better to me than a basic pistol grip even if it requires a more deliberate hold under aim. It is 3.5Ē longer than a regular pistol grip. Iím not sure if it is the fact that my hand is behind the bore as opposed to below it but recoil is reduced. If you decide to go with the 14Ē barrel, the grip will just get you legal length and does bring the safety into easy reach.
As a side note, the company Shockwave Technologies has a special going on now where you get a second grip if you post a review so Iíll soon have another one. Maybe a 14Ē gun would be the best use for it? Made in the USA from Fiberglas reinforced Polymer it comes with the bolt and fit perfectly for $29.95 plus shipping. If you like a birdís head grip itís well worth a try and a hell of a lot easier than grinding down an older wooden stock to make one.