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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
NOTE: I actually started this review in Sept. 2010. I just put it aside and forgot all about completing it. Anyway, I got bored today and found it on my system, so here it is.

A while back I received in the mail the ERGO Tri-rail forend. The version I have is intended for use on the Mossberg 500 or 590, and I am reviewing it from use on my 590. I was looking mainly for a platform for a vertical foregrip, but also possibly a reconfiguration of my mounted flashlight setup for better weight distribution as well as better management of a switch wire. Before installing this part, to hold my flashlight on the gun I was using one of those single rail adapters that bolt on to the magazine tube. I've found that a full forend rail system is a much more elegant solution, which by use of an additional rail sling adapter quite nicely keeps my flashlight's momentary switch wire in place and out of the way.

Here's the official Ad copy from the ERGO site.

http://ergogrips.net/products/rails/ergo-trirail-forend-mossberg-500-590-standard.html
This is the Mossberg 500/590 version but it is also available for the Rem 870.

Before getting to the details of the ergo offering, its worth mentioning the other options out there for comparisons sake. Looking up railed forends you basically come up with these main options. The only one I haven't ever had the chance to look over in person is the UTG/Leapers option.
Command arms - Picatinny Rail Systems for Mossberg 500
Mako Tactical - Tactical Forends
UTG/Leapers - Leapers, Inc. - Hunting/Shooting, Sporting Goods and Security Gear
And the clear winner on construction quality (and ridiculously high price), the Surefire - SureFire Mossberg 500 / 590 Shotgun Picatinny Rail System M70 FREE S&H M70. SureFire Flashlights, SureFire Flashlight Accessories, SureFire Batteries

NOTE: At the time of writing this review, these were the current options I had found. It seems Surefire has since ceased production of thier M70 Picatinny Rail System for Mossbergs, and no longer have an option for the platform in production.

The ERGO offering having full length rails and being all machined aluminum is a big plus. The only thing that could beat it would be the Surefire M70 rail forend, which costs more than twice as much (And has a bit more rail space, but also is larger and heavier overall) . Another plus to the ERGO rail system is that it comes in either the short or long version. Mind you though that doesn't refer to how much rail you want, but rather is supposed to fit different length forends. I actually have no idea what 500/590 shotguns have the "short" forends, but I think its worth mentioning as it might be an option for some shotguns for which the other rail options might not apply. The longer of the two is what fits my 590, but they have a size chart listed on the site that would help the prospective buyer choose the right one.

My initial feelings of the part itself were mixed. First of all the actual product doesn't look like the advertised pictured. It just doesn't have the 'lips' circling the slide tube as it does on the official pictures. I don't honestly see any serious disadvantage to this, but it concerns me when something doesn't appear as advertised. Quality of the machining isn't bad, but neither is it among the best I've seen. The rails seem to be well within spec, but don't seem quite as precise as most high quality rails (generally more expensive ones mind you) that I've used on other platforms. Not to complain too much however, as I'm certain they are of considerably better quality overall than the polymer rails on the similarly priced shotgun forend rail options. And though I've never personally seen the leapers option up close, I'm familiar with their products for use on other platforms, and they tend to be among the least precise, as well as often including inferior mounting hardware.

The package also includes enough ERGO lo-pro rubber rail covers to cover up whatever rails you aren't using. As a fan of lo-pro style covers, this is a plus for me.

The forend doesn't use any additional mounting hardware. This is a good thing when you consider that, as I mentioned above, a lot of rail mounting options tend to come with extremely inferior screws to bolt them on which are often prone to stripping. With the gun broken down and the slide assembly removed, the user just needs to unscrew the tube nut from the slide assembly, pull off the handguard, replace it with the railed forend, and tighten down the tube nut on it. The railed forend was extremely snug on the slide tube and took a bit of elbow grease. Pretty easy to install overall in just a few minutes, especially if you have a little oil and a rubber mallet on hand.

My initial hyper critical feelings aside, honestly I'm very happy with it. I actually like it just a little bit more than the surefire option, if simply because of it's lack of unnecessary bulk by comparison. It's a bit shorter, but has all the rail space I can ever think of needing on a shotgun forend. And I certainly like the enormous price difference. On a 'fighting' gun, looks will take a backseat to practicality every time in my book. Even if you aren't interested in a vertical foregrip and only use it for a light, laser, or something of that nature, the rails with the rubber rail covers installed offer a comfortable grip surface and probably a much more positive grip over standard hard plastic forends. All in all, I think this product is probably the best bang for the buck in it's category. I'd recommend it as my preference of the options I have come across to do the job at hand.



 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
This review is a bit dated now but since I referenced it in a thread I just now went back and tried to fix some of the outdated links and put the pictures back in which had since been deleted.
 
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