I just saw the original thread and I see you are thinking about buying a shotty for you dad. Depending on what he is going to use it for you can't beat the versitility of the Remmington 870. Its a pump so its more of a utility gun then a work of art over under. But at your price range the OU are going to be either very basic and durable, or very fancy looking and a POS. The 870 has been the classic design in pumps and there are so many options that can be purchased to change the use. You might buy a basic 12 gauge wingmaster that can take 3" shells and your dad could buy any number of different barrels with a variety of chokes to use it for any sort of hunting.
tagging on from the other thread, i will talk to the old man and see what his previous gun was and will report back. thanks for all the help thus far.
If he is looking for something for skeet, you need something that cycles itself or has 2 barrels so you can shoot doubles, its possible with a pump but you have to awfully good and really fast with the pump. The Remington 1100 is a nice gun, and the 1187 will give him some flexiability to shot heavier loads for ducks and geese.
Try to figure out what you want most (hunting ducks, deer, dove, pheasant..., targets, slug, trap, skeet,...) and let us know, I am sure we can narrow down some choices for you.
definitely only for skeet/trap etc.
thanks for the help, its much appreciated.
By skeet / trap do you mean at a club where they have the actual skeet and trap set up, or in the back 40 where you are going to throw your own? it may sound like splitting hairs but its not, the games of skeet and trap are different and require different things from the gun set up to do them well. While hand throwing or using a mechanical spring thrower is often called skeet, its really nothing like skeet. Skeet has double shots, basic trap only uses single shots...
Granted for many people if they are good at either skeet or trap, and do the other for fun you can use one gun. If its something to be serious about, then you need different things in your shotties to do both. If you are doing skeet, do not go with a pump. Its slow and frustrating. If you are going trap, or just hand tossing them for yourselves, go with the pump.
The more I think about it and the more I re-read your original posts. I say go with an autoloader, the Remington 1100 has been around for years and is known for its soft shooting and will cycle target loads all day, you can shoot singles and doubles with the same gun. If you think he might want to pick up hunting, then go with the 11-87 it allows you to shoot targets or use the 3" and even larger shells for duck and goose hunting. There are many, many choices in autoloaders. The B guns are all nice (Browning, Benilli, Berretta) but all cost more. The remingtons I mentioned have a ton of users so they do something right, but the other major gun makers are making nice guns. Be aware that there are a lot of guns on the market for less money then the remingtons. If a gun costs 25% less, you have to wonder why. Some of the cheaper gun look beautiful, they have engraving, and deep checkered grips. Gorgeous, so ask yourself, how is it cheaper yet nicer looking? If you find a gun you like at a price you like. go to http://www.shotgunworld.com/
look up reviews and any quality problems peole have before plunking down the cash. Like any purchase a little research will help you make a better choice.