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Magazine Multiplier: Mossberg 590M

The debut of Mossberg’s new-for-2018 magazine-fed 590M shotgun at SHOT has been surprisingly low-key.

We practically stumbled across it at Industry Range Day and were intrigued enough to track it down on the show floor so that we could get hands-on with it and examine its features without having to shout to be heard over gunfire.

Externally, the gun differs in hardly any dimension from a regular 590. The most noticeable difference is the magazine release housing immediately in front of the trigger guard. Both ambidextrous magazine release buttons, as well as the housing itself, are constructed from steel and exude solidity.

There are scalloped cuts along both edges of the magazine opening, which replaces the loading port on the standard gun. These scallops mate with matching ridges on the body of the magazine and prevent it from wobbling around or being inserted incorrectly.

The magazine is inserted with the nose first and then rocks and locks into place with a reassuringly audible click.

The mags are on the large side.

The mags are on the large side.

The magazines are beefy, substantial things, made of dense plastic. They consist of a top and bottom half and the top is the same regardless of the capacity. The bottom half, with a sort of waffle pattern of reinforcing ribs, varies in size depending on capacity.

The initial offerings are five, ten, fifteen, and twenty rounds. Since the gun is limited to 2 ¾” shells, there isn’t a 3-round magazine for waterfowl hunting.

Ten round mag in the gun.

Ten round mag in the gun.

The gun handles surprisingly well, even with the larger magazines inserted, since the magwell is right at the gun’s balance point. The fifteen and twenty round magazines are large enough to make the gun a little awkward, and we can only imagine what a 20-round mag full of buckshot must weigh.

The 590M lineup will initially consist of two models, a plain 18.5” gun and a more upscale version with a heat shield, ghost ring sights, and a barrel threaded for choke tubes.

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