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Old 02-11-2012, 01:29 AM   #1
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Default Having trouble unloading shells

Hey all.

So My new Mossberg 500 Thunder Ranch came in from bud's yesterday and I eagerly picked it up. Being my first firearm I have been reading the manual and practicing loading and unloading shells. I hit a snag almost immediately.

The style of unloading preferred in the manual (supposedly) is the this:
- Flip the gun upside down, depress the cartridge stop and the shell will pop out do this one at a time until unloaded.

This is demonstrated in this video:


However, my Thunder Ranch 500 will not unload like this. On the elevator there is a large "notch" of some sort that sticks out.



When I depress the cartridge stop the shell only pops out about an 1/8 of an inch, and the shell rim hits that notch on the elevator, preventing me from unloading the magazine.

It seems insane that on a "home defense" special model of the mossberg 500, they would use a part on purpose that prevents the safest way to unload the gun.

I'm really frustrated here. Is this notch thing normal? Please help me not be upset at my first gun purchase
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Old 02-11-2012, 01:58 AM   #2
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Well after playing with it a bit, I can pull forward on the shell to slide it "around" that notch to unload the shell, but it takes a bunch of pressure and sometimes it doesn't work still. In addition, just loading the shells into the magazine takes more pressure that it seems like it should, because that notch is so pronounced. The shell's rim is actually scraping that notch and then clicking down over it before it even goes fully into the tube. It scrapes the notch hard enough that after only loading about 10 shells total into the tube the black finish on the center of the notch is now silver because of the scraping of the shell's rim...

Is this something to be concerned about?

in the video above the shells just pop out with no problem whatsoever. I need to pull the shell out with a tug over the notch and that doesn't seem like it should be necessary. And will having to scrape past this notch while loading potentially damage the shell at all making it unsafe to fire? I just don't know, but I'm really upset that I might need to ship the gun to mossberg before even firing a shot. Putting a REALLY sour taste in my mouth.

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Old 02-11-2012, 03:42 AM   #3
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It may be related to the "newness" of the gun. Shoot a few boxes through it. Cycle it dry a few hundred times and it should smooth out. I am not a big Mossberg fan, but they do seem to work.

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Old 02-11-2012, 03:51 AM   #4
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Hmm... how would dry cycling change the pronounced-ness of that notch on the elevator? Like i said the shell rims are scraping that thing every time. And no matter how much force I put on the evlevator, it won't push down another millimeter to make to it work like it appears it should.

I appreciate the reply for sure, but I'm not sure how putting rounds or dry cycling will do anything to a metal piece that refuses to budge

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Old 02-11-2012, 03:59 AM   #5
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Hmm... how would dry cycling change the pronounced-ness of that notch on the elevator? Like i said the shell rims are scraping that thing every time. And no matter how much force I put on the evlevator, it won't push down another millimeter to make to it work like it appears it should.

I appreciate the reply for sure, but I'm not sure how putting rounds or dry cycling will do anything to a metal piece that refuses to budge
Do you have the slide in the "closed" position?
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Old 02-11-2012, 04:12 AM   #6
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Do you have the slide in the "closed" position?
Yes, or else I wouldn't be able to access the the magazine tube at all because the elevator would be down blocking the tube?

If you are referring to the picture, no I have it open so I could get a good picture of the notch I was referring to.
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Old 02-11-2012, 04:17 AM   #7
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Yes, or else I wouldn't be able to access the the magazine tube at all because the elevator would be down blocking the tube? Were you being sarcastic?
No, it was hard to tell from the photo what was hanging up the shell, with the bolt closed the elevator should rest against the top of the receiver. Did it lay flat when you installed the barrel?
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Old 02-11-2012, 04:37 AM   #8
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Here are two pictures that show exactly what I'm talking about.

The first shows the shell being fully in the tube and held in by the "cartridge stop":





The second shows what happens to the shell when I push in the cartridge stop bar. The shell ejects partially and gets stuck on the elevator arm. This picture also shows the scratching that this occurring in multiple places on the elevator because it is raised so high the shell rim scratches it hard on the way into the magazine tube (the white lines on the elevator):



Hopefully these pictures help explain what is happening.

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Old 02-11-2012, 05:13 AM   #9
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I would try taking off the barrel, giving everything a good oiling then reinstall the barrel, making sure all the cuts and notches line up. My Mossberg's action was "gritty" as hell out of the box. Check out the vid below, this gun appears to have the same type of elevator but the shell pops right out without a lot of force.

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Old 02-11-2012, 05:20 AM   #10
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Interesting. Yes his elevator looks similar, and his did catch ever so slightly one time. The next two shells he unloads in that fashion don't catch. The pictures I posted show that there is a considerable part of the shell that catches in the elevator.

This mossberg came fully assembled in the box when it arrived at my FFL. I'll have the read up on how to remove the barrel, what type of oil I'm supposed to buy, how to apply it and then how to reinstall the barrel.

I just didn't want to bother with all of that if the elevator is defective and will need to be returned to mossberg. If that needs to happen the sooner the better. I have read stories online of people waiting 2-3 months before receiving their gun back from mossberg service...

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