Review: Dickinson Arms Marine Pump-Action Shotgun

Dickinson Marine Pump Shotgun

We all wish to be as well-armed as possible.

With obligations including housing, a vehicle and, perhaps, an education, a $1,000 firearm isn’t in our sights.

So, how much compromise are we willing to accept?

There is more compromise inherent in handguns, as the less-expensive versions usually offer less performance.

When it comes to shotguns, not so much. The pump-action shotgun is so simple and effective, a downright cheap version works fine.

Shotgun Loading Gate
An oversize loading port makes for fast reloads.

Benefits of Pump-Action Shotguns

A pump shotgun has a natural point. The action of loading the shotgun and stroking the action are natural. The pump-action shotgun is simple to load.

A 12-gauge shotgun offers proven wound ballistics.

I recently watched a video in which the DNR of the nation involved hunted down a crocodile — not an alligator, but a crocodile — that had killed a local woman near a fishing village.

The official at the helm of a small boat singled out the beast and took aim at about five yards.

A single shot to the head and 1,000 pounds or more of reptile rolled over and died. That is real power.

Of course, a proper load must be chosen. Buckshot or slugs are useful, depending on the problem to be solved.

Marine Shotgun Barrel
While inexpensive, the Dickinson shotgun features a heat shield and well-designed forend.

Dickinson Features and Specs

The Dickinson shotgun illustrated features a marine finish.

This means the shotgun is useful for keeping aboard a boat or in a dwelling in humid parts of the country.

They will withstand a lot of use with minimal maintenance.

With three points of contact, the long gun handles well and swings quickly to get on target.

There isn’t as great a difference between performance of an affordable and a very expensive shotgun as far as general defense use goes.

Either will get the job done if the user is skilled. We are not fighting a war, but a small-scale personal battle.

Dickinson Pump Shotgun
The knurled takedown knob is easy to use well.

9mm handguns and 5.56mm rifles seem in short supply, but the supply line for shotguns looks good.

The Dickinson pump-action shotgun is well-made, the action is smooth enough, and the trigger action crisp and clean.

The safety operates in a positive manner. The finish resembles chrome, but it is nickel, perhaps electroless nickel.

It is a bargain and has a pleasing appearance. The Dickinson line features a lifetime warranty.

The tubular, under-the-barrel magazine will accommodate five 12-gauge 2¾-inch shells.

Simply press 2¾-inch or three-inch shells into the loading port beneath the receiver.

The loading port is larger than early generation shotguns, making loading easy enough.

If the shotgun is cocked, press the bolt release and rack the pump action to the rear.

Leverage is good and a lot of effort isn’t needed. When you fire the shotgun, recoil causes the muzzle to rise.

Use this leverage to help rack the pump-action and slam it forward, bringing the muzzle back on target.

You may fire quickly with good control after a bit of practice.

Some shotgun forends are smooth, this one is properly serrated to offer both abrasion and adhesion in handling.

The forend is also longer than most shotguns. Both the bolt release and the safety lever are oversized for rapid manipulation.

Even the knurled knob holding the barrel to the magazine tube is specially designed for easy manipulation.

I find the Dickinson one of the best buys and a great all-around shotgun for home defense.

Federal 12-gauge ammo
We used a good number of Federal shells.

Load Testing

Leaning into the shotgun and controlling recoil, the shotgun is useful in rapid-fire.

I have tested the new Federal Force X2 buckshot load. This is a nine-ball buckshot load with copper-plated pellets.

The difference, is these balls are segmented so each will break in half, creating a total of 18 wound channels.

This is a purpose-designed personal-defense/home-defense load. The pattern is wider than Federal Flite Wad buckshot.

These buckshot balls will penetrate slightly less and should break up more readily on meeting resistance.

The key to limiting over-penetration is to not miss the target! The pattern at seven yards ran four to five inches, about what Federal Flite Wad loads do at 20 yards.

Buckshot travels in a string and average penetration of this load in gelatin is 9.5 inches, a little less than the standard load.

They begin to segment by five inches penetration. This is a good choice for home defense.

I fired three Federal TruBall slug loads at 15 yards. They grouped into three inches 1.5 inches above the point of aim.

These are useful if greater penetration is needed or defense against large animals is a concern.

Conclusion: Dickinson Arms Pump-Action Shotgun

The Dickinson shotgun is useful, reliable and affordable. In these harrowing times, it just may be at the top of the list to defend the homestead.

What do you think of the Dickinson Marine pump-action shotgun? Let us know in the comments section below!

About the Author:

Wilburn Roberts

When Wilburn Roberts was a young peace officer, he adopted his present pen name at the suggestion of his chief, as some of the brass was leery of what he might write. This was also adopted out of respect for families of both victims and criminals. The pen name is the same and the man remains an outspoken proponent of using enough gun for the job.

He has been on the hit list of a well-known hate group, traveled in a dozen countries and written on many subjects, including investigating hate crimes and adopting the patrol carbine. He graduated second in his class with a degree in Police Science. It took him 20 years to work himself from Lieutenant to Sergeant and he calls it as he sees it.
The Mission of Cheaper Than Dirt!'s blog, The Shooter's Log, is to provide information—not opinions—to our customers and the shooting community. We want you, our readers, to be able to make informed decisions. The information provided here does not represent the views of Cheaper Than Dirt!

Comments (17)

  1. It might work, might not.
    Spend the few extra $ for a Maverick 88 which cycles much much smoother without shells getting hung.
    I just bought a Dickinson xx whatever for $230 w bg check out the door. I couldve ordered the Mav88 which Ive owned. The mav recoil was worse , but at least it cycled flawlessly. As is my Dickenson jams every 2 or 3 rounds, although Ive found a way to clear them quickly, I would probably end up dead in self defense if the first shot didn’t totally do the job.

  2. Hello fellow enthusiasts,
    Just purchased my Dickinson 12 gauge pump from a pawn shop and not knowing much about this weapon I was wondering if anyone can tell me how well it shoots/distance/groups/ etc. with 3″ slugs. I bought this particular shotgun for a a hog hunting excursion I am trying to plan out for springtime here in Florida.
    Thank you for any info or advise ya’ll can give me.
    OT Weapons Enthusiast
    Daytona Beach

  3. Hi, recently purchased a Dickinson AK212TPS-M-HS marine tactical semi auto but cannot get it to cycle target loads, will not eject. Tried game loads 36gr and it did cycle but only two rounds. Is this just part of the breaking in process for things to loosen up or is there something else happening here. Rounds are 70mm or 2 and 3/4 inch Rio target load 28gr. Any suggestions?

  4. For a back up pistol I purchased a North American Arms .25 NAA but recently cant locate CorBon ammo. Any ideas or options. Thanks, Ron

  5. This shotgun is made in Turkey. I’ve owned this gun for about 3 years with no problems. Probably put through 500 rounds, all (makes and shots) with no issues. Also comes with a hard case. Fit and finish is excellent with no visible wear. Well worth the money!

  6. Hi I havehad one of these Dickinson Marine pump shotguns for approx two years now. They are made in TURKEY by a long time gun maker. I purchased it on sale for less than $175.00. It has proven to be very trouble free and accurate as shot guns go. It is very well made and I would compare it to any pump shot gun that costs 5 to 6 times more. The finish has held up very well. I have used 6 different ammo manufactures shells in it with no issues in all kinds of weather. I would by another. they do have several other models as well.

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