Elzetta ZSM – Shotgun Light Mount

Having had prior experience with Elzetta products, I was pretty sure that I’d like their new shotgun light mount, the ZSM. In fact, when I heard about it months ago, I shelved plans to buy a railed forend for my Mossberg 500.

As it turns out, I made the right decision. Like the ZFH-1500, which attaches to the front sight base of an AR-15, the ZSM requires nothing more than a flashlight – you don’t need any rails. Everything, including adapters for 20 and .410 gauge shotguns, as well as flashlights from .7″ to 1.05″ in diameter, is included, and the standard model retails for only $39.95. The railed forend I was looking at was $75 – and would have required another $30-40 for a flashlight mount. Beyond that, it was of dubious quality – whereas the ZSM is of the highest quality. Every component – even the raw materials and the supplied allen wrenches – is made in the United States.

Elzetta also sent me their ZFL-M60 light, which has an excellent flood lens – although they’re sold as a package for $194.90, I’ll be reviewing them separately. I will say, though, that the “flood” effect is phenomenal indoors.

The ZSM places the light just below the bore of my Mossberg, with approximately 1/2″ between the light and the barrel. It’s obvious that a lot of thought went into the exact placement of the light, for not only did I find it to be an easily accessible location, but so did several other people with varying hand sizes and thumb lengths. Because of the position of the light, as well as the flood lens, the gold bead front sight reflects enough to be very visible against all backgrounds without reflecting so much that it obstructs my view of the target. Frankly, it’s better than any night sight I could imagine.

As I mentioned before, the ZSM is of the highest quality – the polymer is identical to that of the ZFH-1500 mentioned above, which I used on a rifle that sometimes had half a dozen 30 round magazines dumped through it at a time, for several thousand rounds, resulting in barrel temperatures over 600 degrees. After that, I took the light mount off – there wasn’t a single mark, burn, line, anything that indicated heat had compromised the strength or form of the mount. Given that, I don’t think it would be possible to load and fire a shotgun fast enough to cause damage to a ZSM mount attached to said weapon.

I loaded up several Walmart “bulk packs” (100 shells) of 12 gauge birdshot, as well as a box of 00 buck, and headed to the range. The only damage done was to my shoulder – the mount and light stayed in place and maintained perfect function. Obviously, that was a limited test, and I will continue to beat on this device until it fails – which might be a while. In the meantime, Elzetta has definitely earned my admiration for a well-designed and well-executed product, made entirely in the USA, which sells for a very reasonable price.


  • Looks good. How would you compare this to a Surefire fore end?

    • Well, it requires no modification to the weapon, and the mount itself is cheaper, although the Surefire forend includes a light. I think I paid $250 for mine, the Elzetta light/mount combo is $194.

      The overall brightness, flood ability, battery life, etc of the Elzetta light is much better than the Surefire forend on my 870, although it’s the incandescent type, and Surefire has since upgraded some of their forends to LED “status”. That said, the LED bulbs have a harder time cutting through smoke and/or fog…

      The newer Surefire forends with comparable brightness/lumens (to the Elzetta) cost $375. Given the quality of the Elzetta, I’m not sure that I could justify spending twice as much, though I am happy with my purchase of the Surefire forend for the 870 all those years ago.

      I’ll go into more detail when I review the Elzetta light.

  • Looks like the light clamps to the barrel. So when you cycle the forend on a pump-gun, you remove your hand from the light.

    I prefer a switch where you have to keep pressing the button when you want it on, so you get instant dark when you remove the pressure on the switch. Looks like this arrangement would cause the light to go out every time I cycled the gun.

    Do you have it arranged with a light that stays on when you push the button?

    • Yes, the Elzetta light shown has both momentary and constant on features. You can use it either way. That would be the only drawback to the mount (that it is fixed), but with a constant-on light option, I do not think it would be a huge problem.

  • Great and timely post. I have been kicking several ideas around, not just for mounting a light to the mossberg, but still hadn’t made up my mind on an AR light setup yet. This just made my decision(s) easy and I will be ordering mounts for both. Thanks for another solid, no BS post.

  • Interesting idea, i just finished watching MagPul’s new Shotgun vid and was debating about a light for my 870, thanks!

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  • I’ve been looking or a light mount for my Benelli Mod- 90 M-3. From my search there aren’t any that are top quality, that work. Is this mount able to be moiunted on Benelli’s. I have heard that there is problem with Benelli magazines and the current crop of light mounts on the market. I just found this link and am hopeful that my search has ended. Can you comment?

  • I bought the ZSM kit based on the strength of your reviews on this and other Elzetta products, so I thought I’d say thanks.

    The flood lens they include works much better indoors than my Surefire G2LED, and it seems like a higher quality product to boot. I mounted it on a Benelli SuperNova with a Nordic extension, and while the contour for the barrel doesn’t quite match up, it works just fine and the light has survived a couple hundred rounds now, including some ridiculously powerful 3.5 inch magnum slugs.

    You can check out some pics of what I ended up with here.

  • Hello:

    Will the mount scratch the magazine tube? I am very picky about scratching my firearms.

    Thank you,


  • Hi,

    I have a Basic Remy 870, 18″ Barrel which after a few hundred rounds am modifying with a Blackhawk Tac. Stock, Tac Star 2 round mag extension, Surefire light, Elzetta Light Mount & Tac Star Barrel Shroud [13 3/4 Inch].
    I would like to know if the Elzetta Light Mount will have enough space to fit with the Barrel Shroud?

    Thanks in advance,


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