Like 2020’s top-selling semi-automatic shotgun, the pump-action sold in the highest volume on GunBroker.com last year is shorter than most others in the category. That nimble profile contributed to the Mossberg 590 Shockwave taking top honors, but when combined with the proven performance of the company’s time-honored 590 action, it’s a reliable home-defense option that’s hard to beat in troubling times.
Reduction in overall length is accomplished on both ends of the gun. First, the traditional stock is replaced by the company’s Raptor Grip. Then, most models come with a relatively short 14.374" barrel length, although two of the 13 currently produced versions wear a 15" or 18.5". As a result, the shortest 590 Shockwaves measure only 26.37", the longest comes in at 30.75".
Gil Horman reviewed one for American Rifleman and provided an excellent explanation as to precisely why 590 Shockwaves don’t fall under federal NFA guidelines or require the corresponding purchase of a tax stamp and long wait for approval. Obviously, there are more restrictive local and state regulations in some regions in the country, but the shotgun is legal in most of the nation. Consult with your FFL or local law enforcement, when in doubt.
Models are available in 12 and 20-gauge, as well as .410 Bore. Twelve of the 13 models are fed from a tubular magazine and 11 of those have a five shotshell capacity. The 590 Shockwave 7 Shot holds six under its 18.5-inch barrel. The 15" barreled 590M Shockwave Mag-Fed holds 10 in a detachable magazine. MSRP for the latter two are $500 and $599, respectively.
Prices for the others run from $500 to $613 for the Shock ‘N’ Saw or heat shielded SPX. Versions with a Crimson Trace Laser Saddle run $652. There’s even a pair of Cerakote versions, one in flat dark earth that will set you back only $553 and a stainless steel version at $708—the most expensive in the budget-friendly lineup.
All barrels are cylinder bore, chamber 3" shotshells and feature heavy-walled construction. Furniture, depending on the model, are polymer or wood. Fore-end on a dozen of the models come in matching material, with corncob texturing.
The Shock ‘N’ Saw’s fore-end is different, with rails for attaching accessories and a rather intimidating profile that lives up to its name. Straps are available in some for added security when pumping the action under the stress of a criminal attack. Each model comes with a bead up front for sighting.