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Old July 26, 2011, 09:47 PM   #1
Drummer101
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Custom 870

I have a Remington 870 Express 18inch 7 shot (from factory)

I am planning on getting it threaded for chokes (for turkey and hoping better slug performance, not to mention making the trap shooters freak out ).
I already have a Beretta, should I go for the REM chokes or Beretta ones?

I would like to get it tapped for a low power scope/red dot for slug shooting, but I also want to be able to remove it for using the bead. Is there a rail with a low enough profile? Or just put in screws where it is tapped (if that is possible)?
If not possible I will just practice with the bead more.

I am also panning on making the length of pull a little longer, limb saver or kick-ez I think would do the trick.
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""I would say that we have to make up criteria."
OK, which is better for 2 Bantu, 5 Hottentots, and 3 pygmies playing a war march on a calliope at 3 a.m. during a monsoon?
Show your work and round to the nearest decimal."-Mike Irwin
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Old July 26, 2011, 11:17 PM   #2
lamarw
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I am kind of curious. I have a Mossberg 500 with a 20 inch barrel and 7 round mag, and the mag is only slightly shorter than the barrel (less than an inch). How long is your mag compared to the 18 inch barrel?

I also have a regular 870 express (meaning long barrel and standard magazine)and was buying additional choke tubes for it. It seemed to me there was a larger selection of chokes tubes for the Remington (from Remington and other manufacturers) than other brands of shotguns and the prices were slightly less. I am not sure whether this would be a consideraions for you or not.

If you already have a customizer in mind, you may want to quiz him with the options and his recommendations.

I kind of think a 20 inch barrel would be shorter enuff for turkey hunting, but it is your project. Good luck with it.
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Old July 27, 2011, 01:10 AM   #3
TheKlawMan
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lamarw, I have the same 870 as the OP and the factory 2 shot extension ends flush with the muzzle of the barrel.
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Old July 27, 2011, 01:48 AM   #4
lamarw
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Thanks Klawman, Here is a picture of my Mossberg with the seven round magazine and 20 inch barrel. There must be a sizeable difference in the two gun's dimensions for the 18 inch 870 barrel to clear the mag. I will have to lay my two guns side by side and see where the difference is at. Thanks
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File Type: jpg Mossy.jpg (70.1 KB, 37 views)
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Old July 27, 2011, 02:24 AM   #5
TheKlawMan
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lamar, I think I see the cause for confusion. The 870 model the OP and I have is a seven shot (6 in the mag and 1 in the chamber) whereas your Mossberg takes a full 7 in its mag plus 1 in the chamber. Counting that way your Mossberg is an 8 shot.
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Old July 27, 2011, 10:41 AM   #6
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This would explain it. Thanks~
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Old July 27, 2011, 12:41 PM   #7
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not to mention making the trap shooters freak out
Why go out of your way to be a jerk?
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Old July 27, 2011, 01:12 PM   #8
Drummer101
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I just want to try it once

I have a 28inch barrel for "real" clays.
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""I would say that we have to make up criteria."
OK, which is better for 2 Bantu, 5 Hottentots, and 3 pygmies playing a war march on a calliope at 3 a.m. during a monsoon?
Show your work and round to the nearest decimal."-Mike Irwin
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Old July 27, 2011, 01:20 PM   #9
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You might want to start with your long barrel -- you know what they say about first impressions.
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Old July 27, 2011, 01:59 PM   #10
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Putting screw in chokes into an 18" barrel ....with that short a sight plane ...is really a waste of money from my perspective. You're going to be way better off on Turkey - with the longer barrel ...as well as Trap.

If you really want to shoot the 18" barrel with an open cyclinder choke on clay targets --- I'd suggest a trip to a Skeet field ( and I'd recommend you ask the range master - and they other guys on the squad / if they mind, if you shoot an 18" barrel ...the muzzle blast on short barrels on a Trap squad, to the guys beside you, is way past rude ...) in my opinion / at least on a Skeet squad - the other shooters are behind you ...and the open Cyclinder choke isn't as big a handicap as it would be on Trap sinlgles from the 16 yd line.

If you do this - should you go with Rem chokes or the Beretta chokes ...I don't know as it matters ...but if you have the Beretta chokes / why not have the barrel cut for them vs the Rem chokes...
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Old July 27, 2011, 02:07 PM   #11
Drummer101
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I know the people at the club and there is no rule about barrel length. Now a 22" O/U would be about the same length Now a ported 26 inch on the of the guys uses is a little louder than my 28 inch.

But like I said I have a proper clay gun already.

Main reason for the chokes:
Be able to put in a turkey choke (why would a 18 inch barrel be a hinderence?)
And maybe in the improved would work slightly better for slugs.
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""I would say that we have to make up criteria."
OK, which is better for 2 Bantu, 5 Hottentots, and 3 pygmies playing a war march on a calliope at 3 a.m. during a monsoon?
Show your work and round to the nearest decimal."-Mike Irwin

Last edited by Drummer101; July 27, 2011 at 02:17 PM.
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Old July 27, 2011, 02:33 PM   #12
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Sight plane on a short barrel - is not optimal for hunting ...even stationary targets ( in my opinion ). The longer sight plane - gives your eyes a better platform to be sucessful. Same thing on handguns - most of us don't shoot 2 1/2" barrels as well as we shoot 4" - and we shoot 5" or 6" barrels a little better than 4" ...until at some point / they get too long.

A short barreled shotgun - balistically / will perform about the same as a longer barrel - because the powder burns within the first 18" or so anyway.

The receiver on a pump-gun or a semi-auto are longer than the receiver on an O/U ---and its about a 2" difference / so the overall length of a pump gun with a 28" barrel is about the same overall length as an O/U with 30" barrels.

Short shotgun barrels on moving targets - clays or birds - get real "whippy" with short barrels ...vs "smooth" swinging on longer barrels. Same issue on weight - light guns tend to be "whippy" - heavier guns tend to swing smoother. The question is - what is your optimal ...for me in Trap its a 10lb O/U with 32" barrels ...in bird hunting, skeet and sporting clays its an 8 1/2 lb O/U with 30" barrels... If I go to a light gun in a semi-auto that's lighter to carry in the field / like a Benelli Super Sport at 7.2 lbs ....I go to a 30" barrel on that gun ...because its so light / I tend to slap at targets - or yank it around vs swing it smoothly ...and if it had a 26" barrel it would be even worse..../ so with lighter guns, I go to even longer barrels...

But - can you shoot that gun sure / is it optimal, in my opinion, no. Its a "fighting gun" ...not a moving target or hunting gun ...so that's how I see it / my reasoning... So I say shoot it for fun at Skeet ...and use it for "Tactical shooting" ...vs having screw in chokes added for $ 300 or so .../ its not worth it, in my opinion.
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Old July 27, 2011, 02:48 PM   #13
Drummer101
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$30 to put in the chokes at the gun smith, plus 2 or 3 to have around (improved, full, and turkey).

But the sight radius should not matter if I get it tapped for a scope of some kind.
__________________
""I would say that we have to make up criteria."
OK, which is better for 2 Bantu, 5 Hottentots, and 3 pygmies playing a war march on a calliope at 3 a.m. during a monsoon?
Show your work and round to the nearest decimal."-Mike Irwin
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Old July 27, 2011, 03:04 PM   #14
BigJimP
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That's true if you tap it for a scope it won't matter.../but then its useless on moving targets ...unless you take the scope off...and I'll leave the pros and cons on defense with a scope to guys that know more about that stuff than I do.

at some point it seems like you're trying to turn it into a "swiss army knife"...and while it makes no sense to me / as long as it works for you - it comes down to what you want.

Be cautious on these local gunsmiths that do screw in chokes. Before you take it to him - check the point of impact / if he doesn't get those threads in just right ...it'll change the point of impact ....$ 30 is very cheap / the question is - can he do it well ?? Choke tubes themselves - are anywhere from $ 30 - $ 100 each --- depending on what you want ....
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Old July 27, 2011, 03:12 PM   #15
Drummer101
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You are right about the swiss army knife

As it sits right now here is what I would use it for (with a bead sight)

Dear (close close range)
very informal clays with friends on our own land
Hog if I get a chance

I want to expand that usage to slightly longer range slugs (scope, out to 90-100 yards ideal)
and turkey (the reason for not just getting a rifles barrel with scope mount)
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""I would say that we have to make up criteria."
OK, which is better for 2 Bantu, 5 Hottentots, and 3 pygmies playing a war march on a calliope at 3 a.m. during a monsoon?
Show your work and round to the nearest decimal."-Mike Irwin
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Old July 27, 2011, 03:12 PM   #16
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What Jim mentions is true - jack of all trades shotguns do nothing well and are a compromise in every aspect used. Typically, they then become jack handles of all trades and masters of nothing.

As cheap as pump guns are, you might want to consider having two - one set up with your short barrel, scope, etc. and the other set up for your other pursuits

Personally, I would much rather have several guns designed for specific purposes and fitted/outfitted accordingly than trying to make one do everything - but that's JMO
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Old July 27, 2011, 04:04 PM   #17
BigJimP
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I think you'll find that putting screw in chokes in that gun is a waste of money....and it won't do much of anything with slugs either. It would make it ok for Turkey - but you already have another Turkey gun anyway - so I wouldn't bother with it for that either.

Putting a scope on it ...I don't know ...maybe it'll work / and I don't know the kill range on a slug out of a shotgun ...but I doubt its over 50 yds. ( but I'm a rocky mountain guy - we hunt big game with rifles(deer, bear, elk, moose...) - not slugs...). I kind of think the scope is a poor idea too ..on a shotgun for slugs with an 18" barrel...

You might be finding out the same thing that some of my son's buddies have figured out ...a bunch of them in their 30's ....bought these tactical shotguns..with 18" barrels .../ and none of them have fired them in well over 3 yrs because they're not fun to shoot ...and like my buddy OneOunce says - they just aren't very good for birds or flying clays - so those guys are all investing in other shotguns now ...Over Unders or semi-autos they can hunt with /shoot clays with...and the tactical shotguns get left out / especially since I've clouded their mind on tactical shooting ...that handguns are the way to go...(and they're more fun to play with )...
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Old July 27, 2011, 05:02 PM   #18
LSnSC
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Express barrels are relatively cheap.
I'd buy additional barrels for different uses, rather than have chokes installed.
Keep your 18" for self defense, get a 26-28 VR for clays and hunting, and a barrel for slugs. With a decent scope and slugs your gun likes, its a very effective 100-150 yd deer gun.
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Old July 27, 2011, 05:22 PM   #19
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I have one of the 21" turkey barrels for my 870 that is threaded. My brother has one of the 20" rifle sighted barrels which is also threaded. I have found them to be the most useful overall barrels I own. Not the best choice for clay shooting or pass shooting at waterfowl by a long shot, but useable with the right tubes and some practice.

They are perfect for SD, turkey hunting, deer hunting, close range quail, bear defense, or as a general purpose survival gun. The longer barrels are MUCH better for overall hunting/clay shooting, but useless for many other tasks. The 18" barrel you have now is quite good as a SD weapon, but basically useless for anything else.

Overall I like the idea, but think something 2-3" longer would be a bit better. Since it is a Remington barrel, I'd stay with Remington tubes. I could see Beretta tubes in a Remington barrel causing serious confusion down the road.
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Old July 27, 2011, 06:39 PM   #20
zippy13
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barrels are relatively cheap.
MidwayUSA has M-500 18-inch barrels on sale for $75!
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Old July 27, 2011, 09:01 PM   #21
Rugerismisticness
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You could buy a new barrel??? Heck, even Mossberg makes 870 barrels. I dissagree, sight radius is irrelevant on a shotgun. Why? A; you shouldn't be admiring your wonderful long shiney serrated rib in the first place. B; there really isn't a rear sight to open or close "air" between front and rear sights (of which there are none on most shotguns).

There was a fellow who had just come from a gunshow with his first shotgun, a Beretta FP1201 with the 20" barrel and rifle sights. He shot suprisingly well with it, so he let me give it a go. I found that rifle sights, oddly enough, work just as well for skeet as a plain jane rib. This may be because I might not have been focused on the sight, rather the clay.
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Old July 28, 2011, 11:55 AM   #22
TheKlawMan
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Quote:
not to mention making the trap shooters freak out
Why go out of your way to be a jerk?
Zippy, my friend, some people don't have to go out of their way as it just comes natural to those with "the touch".
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Old July 28, 2011, 12:05 PM   #23
BigJimP
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Sight plane on a shotgun is indeed a factor - in terms of how well it swings and follows thru.

You should never look at a barrel after you mount the gun ...but any kind of rifle sights on a shotgun are a big time detriment. Your eye acts as the rear sight on a shotgun - that's why we talk about "Fit" so much - the gun needs to "Fit" so it hits where you look. Mid rib beads - front beads - are used only to check the mount ( to make sure the gun is not canted as you mount it ) ...then ignore the beads as well.

I have yet to see anyone with rifle sights ...or a barrel under 26" long on a shotgun shoot skeet or trap consistently with scores in the mid 90's out of 100. Mid 90's are not great scores / they're average scores ...but I have yet to see anyone do it - and if and when they can in fact shoot in the mid 90's to a 98 average with these 18" barrels .. I may start hacking off the ends of my barrels ...but until then I will continue to stick with guns in the 30" and 32" barrels....in the field - or in Skeet, Trap, Sporting Clays...

But if you like shooting 18" barrels for skeet go ahead ...or with ghost ring sights or whatever ...( and if you can shoot in the mid 90's with it / I'll congratulate you just like I would anyone ).
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