My girlfriend loves shooting my 870 Police Magnum (4901) with target loads, but the length of pull is far too long: her left arm needs to be fully extended to reach the slide forearm. She doesn't mind 12 gauge, and she even shot a Brenneke slug and didn't mind the recoil. But that fairly mild target load causes her to step back at each shot. I think, though, the fit of the gun is partly at fault. I've begun to think about a shotgun just for her. This is for defense and gun range fun for now. Later we may get longer barrels and try thrown clay targets. Farther yet in the future, we may go bird hunting together.
Because of the possible defensive use of these shotguns, I think that having an 870, with the same controls as my Police Magnum, is a good idea, rather than some other brand. But we're open to alternatives. I see that Remington has a Wingmaster Jr. with a 12" length of pull, shorter than even the 13" LOP on the youth 870 Express (it's 14" or 14 -1/4" on the non-youth models). But these are 20 gauge guns. My thinking is that if we can both use 12 gauge that's a better choice, costwise and tactically.
She would love a high gloss wood stock and forearm. Ideally, I'd find a short barrelled 12 gauge Wingmaster with a shorter LOP stock or an 870 Police with a short, plain wooden buttstock. I'm suprised Remington doesn't offer them. Winchester has the 1300 Sporting Field Compact, the 1300 Ranger Gloss Compact, both with 24" barrels, and the 1300 Ranger Compact, with a 22" barrel - all with 13" LOP. Browning offers the BPS micro, with a 22" barrel and a 13-1/4" LOP, but it's a 20 gauge, like the Wingmaster Jr. On the semiauto side, Browning offers the 12 gauge Gold Ladies Sporting Clays with 13-1/2" LOP and a long 28" barrel. Mossberg has the 13" LOP, 24" barrel, 500 Bantam, available in 12 gauge. So where is Remington in all of this? If nothing else, why don't they simply offer replacement wooden forearms and also buttstocks with a 13" LOP? I'd put those on a second 870P and be done with it.
Perhaps you can purchase the shotgun based on the qualities of the shotgun (not the stock the comes on it) and then add an after market short LOP stock.
SpeedFeed sells their IV-S stock which has a 13" LOP and if you substitute their SWAT but plate for the butt pad that comes on it you get a 12" LOP. Also, Hogue overmold stocks are available in a 12" LOP version.
I guess what I am trying to say is that you can probabl find a shot gun that meets her needs irrespective of the stock that comes from the factory and then customize it for her body by adding an aftermarket short LOP stock.
If she has her heart set on wood, just take the stock down to a gunsmith and have him shorten it up. We do that here in SoCal and it costs us $85. It looks factory when it's done.
There are a few options. My first stop would be to a stocking dealer that carries and has access to the Remington Police shotguns. The Remington websites do NOT show all of the different models that they offer. Reminton may very well offer a 12gauge set up with a shorter stock.
The other option is to get the gun you like, then buy the proper stocks. Make sure you get the full-length forend, not the short "tactical" one. Remington offers a "youth" (short stock) 16gauge so I know they make the stocks. The 12 and 16 gauge components are interchangeable. You might call Remington and see what stocks are available. I'm sure they will be more than happy to accomodate you.
I don't care much for Ebay, but they do have a ton of shotgun stocks listed. It wouldn't hurt to look around there.
I feel for you in your search. I discovered the same problem with the poor fit between gun and shooter with my wife and her shotgun. I had to remove 1 1/2" from the stock to get it to fit her. I also switched to a full-length forend, then reduced it slightly to accomodate the sidesaddle. I dumped the factory buttpad and replaced it with a LimbSaver pad (they reduce felt recoil by about 50%). After experiencing a "grind-to-fit" recoil pad, I'd gladly pay the $85 that Mesa_Tactical offered to have it done if that price includes the LS buttpad.
I'll probably dump that gun eventually since Mossberg has fallen from grace in my eyes. Since I already own several 20gauge guns, I may end up getting her a 20ga Remington 1100 or 870, and possibly a 20ga Winchester 1300 Compact. The proof is in the shooting.
454 Casull +
Had same quest as you, 5' 100 lb. girlfriend got into shooting IPSC three gun matches this year w/me... Recoil wasn't prob. It was physically holding weapon properly...
def. wanted 12 ga, def. wanted autoloader... but found there are tactical loads for 20 ga....
ended up buying Rem 11-87 youth model, 20 ga. black synth/park. 12.75" LOP, 21" barrel, 41.5" mag2stock
put a 8 shot mag. and a "3gungear" side saddle.
downside, she needs her own ammo, but she shoots .40 (me .45) and .223 (me .308) so WTF
but if I come across Benelli M4 w/adj stock--that would be way better