Last year I purchased a Mossberg Maverick 88 Security 8-Shot Shotgun. I wanted to get some type of pistol grip stock to turn the gun into a cruiser version of a shotgun. I selected the Maverick 88 shotgun because it was the economy line model from Mossberg which allowed me to afford buying some accessories which was cheaper than actually buying a Model 500 Cruiser. A buddy of mine told me about the Knoxx recoil reducing stocks, so I had to check them out.
Before I go any further, I want to say that I'm 6' 2", 220 pounds and wouldn't consider myself a wimp. My interest in recoil reducing is two fold. First, the recoil reduction allows a more pleasurable shooting experience for me while at the range and secondly, it allows my home defense shotgun to be something that my wife is actually willing to shoot more than once. Training is a key component for using any gun in a true defense situation, and the more you enjoy shooting, the more you are willing to train.
As I started looking at the Knoxx stocks, I found they had several styles to choose from; the Breachersgrip, the Folder, and the Adjustable. If you check out the links for each item, you will see they took you to the Blackhawk website. I'm not sure of the details, but some how Blackhawk is affiliated with Knoxx Industries because if you go to Knoxx.com, it takes you to Blackhawk.
Breachersgrip Folder Adjustable
My original thought was to make the shotgun a cruiser style, but I decided to go with the Folder instead because it wasn't that much more ($20) and gave you the option of shouldering the shotgun if desired. I ended up purchasing the Knox SpecOps Folder from CheapThanDirt.com for $88.46 plus S&H.
Since I purchased this stock before I started doing online reviews, I no longer have the original packaging. If you purchase one today, it will most likely come packaged as shown from the Blackhawk website in the photo below.
The following information in italics was taken directly from the Blackhawk website. Also, throughout this review, all information in italics represents the manufacturers advertised specifications and features. All of my review comments will always be in plain text.
Based on the highly acclaimed Knoxx SpecOps Stock™, this sleek folding pistol grip stock takes the pain out of shooting magnum buckshot and slug loads, even with the stock folded. The sturdy soft-rubber coated folding wire-frame stock with integral rubber butt pad is easily folded over the top of the receiver. This allows for compact storage and increased maneuverability in tight spaces, such as vehicles, motorcycles, hallways and entryways.
The SpecOps Folder™ pistol grip contains the unique Knoxx recoilreducing mechanism. The patented recoil-reducing mechanism reduces muzzle flip in addition to taming recoil. Shooters testing the SpecOps Folder™ with Magnum Buckshot loads have found that there is very little discernible recoil in either open or folded positions, with virtually no muzzle flip. The patented Knoxx SpecOps Folder™ shotgun stock cuts perceived felt recoil by over 65%.
Integrated recoil compensation system
- 65 % reduction in perceived felt recoil
- Eliminates painful recoil in the open or folded position
- Eliminates shooter fatigue & recoil related wrist or hand injuries
- Increased accuracy and faster follow-up shots
- Cuts muzzle rise to get back on target faster
- Increased confidence & effectiveness in shotgun utilization
- Maintain a better cheek weld compared to other folding stocks
Ergonomic Pistol Grip with Integrated Non-Slip Texturing for Improved shooter control and comfort
Single Bolt Installation (Pre-installed bolt & lock washer) for Quick and easy single bolt installation
You can find the Owner's Manual at this link.
The next set of photos show the details of the stock after it is removed from the packaging. Blackhawk/Knoxx states the following about the build of their stock.
- "Super Tough" Polymer and Alloy construction
- Well proven materials for years of rugged and reliable service
- Corrosion resistant materials for use in all weather conditions
- Built tough for law enforcement and military environment
- Integral rubber butt pad for improved comfort
- Does not inhibit site picture when folded
- Rubber coated wire frame for improved comfort in cold or hot environments
- Simple & Fast Folding Mechanism
- Easy one hand operation of folding mechanism
- Simple to fold open or closed even under stress or while wearing gloves
- Self-locking mechanism eliminates the need to operate or engage locking buttons or tabs
- Simply squeeze and fold…it’s that easy!
- Compact Design
- Reduced overall size for improved storage options/ ideal for quick use
- Ideal for tactical entry or home defense shotguns
- Length of Pull: 14”
Before I installed the stock, I wanted to get the weight of it. The Knoxx SpecOps Folder weighed in at 2.08 pounds. The weight of the stock on the Mossberb Maverick 88 was 0.96 pounds, so the net weight added to the shotgun was 1.12 pounds.
Installation is simple and again it is covered in the Owner's Manual. First you remove the butt pad by unscrewing the two bolts. Next you remove the stock to receiver attachment bolt.
When you remove the stock, the end of the receiver looks as follows.
You can see how the receiver will interface with the stock by looking at the photo above and below.
You line up the stock and receiver and thread the attachment bolt into the receiver with a long Allen wrench then tighten securely.
The two photos show my stock installed on my Mossberg Maverick 88 Security 8-Shot Shotgun. You can see are review of this shotgun bo going to this link. Installed on the magazine tube is a Laserlyte Shotgun Tri-Rail, with a PLA118 Flashlight Mount and an Inova T4 Flashlight installed.
The next two photos give you a good closeup of the pistol grip area.
One thing I want to point out is that the good ergonomic location of the bolt lock lever on the left side of the gun becomes a little cumbersome to release the bolt with the stock installed. You can no longer do it with your middle finger and you can not reach it with your thumb when you have a correct shooting position on the pistol grip. You have to rotate your hand around the grip until your thumb can reach the lever.
The next feature to evaluate is the recoil reducing feature. Just to be clear, when I talk about this recoil reducing feature, it is in terms of "felt recoil". Felt recoil is your perception of the recoil. The addition of springs helps spread the recoil over a longer period of time which gives the rifle a softer feel and thus less felt recoil. For more information on recoil, you can read this article from Wikipedia.
Knoxx has placed a spring inside the stock handle that attaches to the upper slide portion as shown in the photo below. As the upper portion slides back, it causes the spring to stretch.
You can see the spring inside the handle shown in the photo below.
The next photos show the stock in the normal position and in the fully compressed position. It appears to compress about 3/4".
Since I don't have any way to measure the actual reduction in recoil, I wanted to check and see how much the upper portion of the stock actually moves when shooting the shotgun. To do this I setup some simple tests with aluminum foil. In this photo I show tape placed on each side of the stock and foil bridging between the tape. If the upper moves back, it will bend the foil and the bent foil will keep it's shape and give an indication of how much it deflected.
After shooting the shotgun with Knobel Sports #4 Buckshot in 2 3/4" 12 gauge, you can see how much the upper portion deflected based on the change in the foil. Basically, the upper portion of the stock deflected most of the travel of the stock, which is a good thing.
Next I wanted to try to get a better idea of how far it deflected, so I set up the same test with a smaller piece of foil bridging over the stock.
Again, the upper portion deflected most of the range during the next shot. From my observations, I believe it utilized the entire travel of the stock.
From this, I can say the recoil reducing feature works. My impression of the felt recoil was that it is less than shooting a stock without this feature. I can not realistically give you a % reduction, but I can say I'm happy with this feature.
Now for the bad part. The wire frame is very uncomfortable to shoot if you are using standard sights on a shotgun. What I mean is that when you look down the sights of a normal shotgun, your cheek is directly against the wire frame of the stock. Since this wire frame has to be wide enough to fold over the receiver, it extends out much further than a normal stock would extend. When you fire the shotgun, you feel it against your cheek more than your shoulder. If your plan is to have a gun you can shoulder, I would not recommend this stock, but instead I recommend the SpecOps Adjustable model.
If your shotgun has some other type of elevated sight, the wire frame may not be an issue because your cheek would be higher above the wire. You can see about how much of a sight window you would have with the stock folded. There is about a 1" open area between the receiver and the stock.
The Knoxx SpecOps Folder Stock is a quality product and clearly reduces recoil. If you believe you will shoulder your shotgun most of the time, I would consider the Knoxx SpecOps Adjustable Stock since the wire frame of the SpecOps Folder is uncomfortable to shoot with normal sights. Now that I have owned this stock and taken it to the range several time, I think the other model may have actually been the one best for my needs. On the other hand, I really like folding the stock into the compact version and keeping it in a handy locaiton at home.
© 2010 Gunsumer Reports