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Old November 29, 2007, 03:12 PM   #1
Tombstonejim
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870 vs 870 express

Is there any real difference between an regular 870 and an 870 express? I looked on the remington site and can not see any obvious difference.
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Old November 29, 2007, 03:19 PM   #2
john in jax
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IIRC the 870 Express is cheaper because they use several plastic, nylon and/or synthetic parts in place of the steel parts used in the 870 Wingmaster and other higher end 870's.

Nothing wrong with the express line, just realize they may not be as strong nor as durable as their more expensive cousins.
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Old November 29, 2007, 08:47 PM   #3
Dfariswheel
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Here's the actual differencees between the Wingmaster, the Express, and the Police guns:

The Express is Remington's "budget" gun, made to compete with the cheaper to make Winchester and Mossberg guns.

The Wingmaster is Remington’s "Cadillac" top-of-the-line sporting gun.

The Police is a Wingmaster with a dull finish and is a much more carefully inspected and built gun.

The new "Tactical" and Marine Magnum guns are based on the Express.

How Remington lowered the Express price was to reduce hand labor to a bare minimum, and to eliminate much of the polishing and de-burring the better quality Wingmaster and Police guns get.

The Express is basically the same forged and milled steel receiver and heavy-duty internals gun the better 870's are, just in a rougher, less well finished form with plastic and MIM parts.
The Express is just as strong and durable as the top of the line guns, and will last for about the same 250,000 rounds OR MORE the "better" guns will last just in a less well finished form.

The Express Model has:
A plastic trigger group.
The dimples in the mag tube and the new style plastic magazine retention system, EXCEPT on the extended magazine versions, which do NOT have the dimples.
A rougher finish inside and outside, with machine marks and some burrs left.
A rougher, bead blasted blue job.
A less polished bore.
A two piece sleeved barrel. (not 100% sure about this)
Hardwood or synthetic stock, with a sporting-length fore end and pressed-in checkering.
The Defense version has 18", Cylinder bore barrel, with a bead sight.
The Marine Magnum and Tactical models have plated or polymer finishes.
Some Metal Injection Molded (MIM) parts, like the extractor.

The Wingmaster has:
An aluminum trigger group.
The old style magazine retention system.
A much smoother finish inside and out, no machine marks or burrs.
The Wingmaster gun receives a higher level of inspection and finishing.
A fine, commercial polished blue finish.
A polished bore.
A chrome plated bolt.
A one piece barrel.
Walnut stocks with the famous "Bowling Pin" finish in gloss or satin, and better checkering.
Wide choices in barrel lengths and choke options.
No use of MIM parts, the extractor is milled.
The Wingmaster is the full top-of-the-line commercial Remington pump gun, and is priced accordingly.

The 870 Police has:
An aluminum trigger group.
The old style magazine retention system.
A much smoother finish inside and out, no machine marks or burrs.
The Police gun receives a higher level of inspection and finishing and is built in a special area of the plant from 100% inspected parts.
A military-grade parkerized finish.
A polished bore.
A one piece barrel.
Walnut or synthetic stock, with a short police-length fore end.
The Remington “R3” super recoil pad that reduces felt recoil by 30%.
Choices in different stocks, including Speed-feed, and others.
18" to 20" improved cylinder barrel, with a wide choice in sights, including rifle, ghost ring, and luminous.
Police options like magazine extenders, forearms with built-in lights, and sling swivels.
Heavy-duty magazine spring.
Heavy-duty trigger-sear spring.
Heavy-duty shell lifter spring.
Sling swivel mounts.
No use of MIM parts, the extractor is milled.

The Express is a "bottom of the line" budget gun, the Wingmaster is a "top of the line" sporting gun, the Police is the top-of-the-line in defense guns.
The 870's are generally considered to be the finest quality pump gun made.
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Old November 29, 2007, 09:23 PM   #4
robc
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Great explanation, Dfariswheel.

My Wingmaster is about 30 yrs old. It still functions flawlessly and looks like a million dollars. Never a single problem.

My Express is the only pump-gun I own that has needed a smith's attention (unless you count a mag tube I bent with a couple pairs of plier once). Some little doohicky was catching on a thingamajig, which prevented the gun from being racked after shot fired.
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Old November 30, 2007, 04:14 PM   #5
Tombstonejim
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Thank you Dfariswheel. I don't think I could have gotten a better answer. Just curious I have an 870 express magnum Security model with 18 in barrel. Is that the same as a police or is it just a regular express with the short barrel..
Thank you sir.
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Old November 30, 2007, 07:36 PM   #6
Dfariswheel
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It's nothing more than the Express with a short barrel.
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Old December 1, 2007, 06:46 PM   #7
remjeep75
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what about the special purpose models?
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Old December 1, 2007, 08:03 PM   #8
Dfariswheel
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Depends.
The older Special Purpose guns were usually top-of-the-line Wingmaster models with a parkerized finish.
They were intended for the sportsman who wants a top quality gun, but who uses it in harsh conditions that would quickly rust a polished blued model.

I'm not sure what the current Special Purpose models are based on.

Get on Remington's web site and go to their "Custom Support" area. They have a great online question system where you can ask questions.

Ask them what the Specials are based on.
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Old December 4, 2007, 10:50 AM   #9
island66
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Dfaris:

Great explanation...the only thing I would clear up is the one-piece/two-piece barrel deal. All 870's currently have one piece barrels. The only 2 piece barrels that Remington has ever put on the 870 was waaaaay back when they first came out. At that time, the barrel extension was actually threaded onto the barrel. Everything now is hammer forged and then the extension is machined on the forged blank. Good info, though. Thanks.

Jason
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Old December 4, 2007, 02:32 PM   #10
Crosshair
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So if I wanted to make a SBS I would be best to use a Wingmaster as the starting point?
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Old December 4, 2007, 05:01 PM   #11
Dfariswheel
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island66:

Good info.
The reason I was unsure is, I saw a few Express models a couple of years ago that appeared to have a joint on the outside just in front of the chamber.
This led me to believe that the barrel might be a two-piece, sleeved unit.

Crosshair:
If you're going to spend the money on a SBS, it'd just make more sense to go with a top of the line gun instead of the "budget" model.

In fact, I'd personally be looking at a Police model.
However, if you want to build on a used gun, you can always find Wingmaster's in great shape, fairly cheap.
You can't always find used Police guns, and when you do, the condition is usually well-used but mechanically perfect.
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