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Old May 18, 2012, 07:58 PM   #1
DaStray
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Cut down 870 vent rib?

Hi all,
I was given an 870 Express Super Magnum with a looong barrel and would like to convert it to a HD shotgun. I`ve looked at various web sites and barrels would run around 125 at the cheapest all the way up to 175 or so.
My question is this: I`m considering cutting down the barrel but am unsure exactly how to measure the barrel to make sure I don`t run afoul of the feds in doing so. Is it measured from the rear of the chamber, front of the chamber or from the bolt face? I know I`ll have to relocate the bead sight but have no problem with doing that. Last thing I want to do is wind up in some federal pokey! Any help will be greatly appreciated.
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Old May 18, 2012, 08:29 PM   #2
M4BGRINGO
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Closed bolt face.

I have seen 1000's of used barrels for sale on the internet, suprised you would have to pay more than $50 for one.
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Old May 19, 2012, 05:52 PM   #3
Dfariswheel
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Close the action and insert a rod or dowel down the bore.
Mark the rod even with the barrel, remove and measure. That's the actual barrel length.

Remember, the barrel MUST be NO LESS than 18 inches long. Note too that some states may have other standards.

"As far as I know" (note the qualifier) you can use any standard 870 barrel on the Super Mag but you can only shoot shells that the barrel is made for.
As example if you install an older 2 3/4" barrel on the Super you can only shoot 2 3/4" shells.
Since the 3 1/2" Super is WAY over powered for defense use, a standard 2 3/4" or 3" barrel would work well and you could either keep or sell the Super barrel to fund a 18" barrel.
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Old May 19, 2012, 06:09 PM   #4
oneounceload
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Why not sell yours for the same 125 to 175 your other one would cost you?
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Old May 20, 2012, 07:29 PM   #5
jmr40
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I've done several. On a vent rib barrel you need to cut right at one of the posts attaching the rib. On the Remingtons I've done that means 23", 21", 19" or 17". You don't want 17". I've always cut mine at the post that gave me 21". That way if I messed up i could get a 2nd chance. I've found 21" to be short enough.

Just use a hacksaw and make the cut as square as possible. Use a file and square to get the end of the barrel squared up and remove any burrs from the inside of the barrel. Use cold blue to touch up. This is a 10 minute job the 1st time you do it and under 5 minutes after doing it once. I use one of the fiber optic sights that clamp onto the rib for a sight. Mine have always worked great.
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Old May 20, 2012, 07:50 PM   #6
zippy13
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jmr40's right-on the mark for the trimming operation; but, he's omitted the most intimidating step for the ham handed home hacker: reinstalling the rib's front bead perfectly centered.
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Old May 20, 2012, 08:37 PM   #7
Superhouse 15
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An easy trick for getting the new bead centered is simple. Install it before you cut and you can use the existing front bead as a reference. You can verify it and you don't need a fancy drilling jig or anything.
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Old May 21, 2012, 06:44 PM   #8
jmr40
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Quote:
jmr40's right-on the mark for the trimming operation; but, he's omitted the most intimidating step for the ham handed home hacker: reinstalling the rib's front bead perfectly centered.
Actully I did.

Quote:
I use one of the fiber optic sights that clamp onto the rib for a sight. Mine have always worked great.
Might not make a purist happy, but neither would cutting down a barrel. I figure for the intended purpose a fiber optic bead is just fine.
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Old May 24, 2012, 03:19 AM   #9
bamaranger
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not me

I would not cut down a full length barrel for HD use. Commercially available short barrels are common and not that expensive.

Using your "sawed off" in an actual SD shoot might create legal toe holds in subsequent civil actions that could bring grief later. A "deer" or turkey barrel is much more defensible.
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Old May 24, 2012, 03:51 AM   #10
model18
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+1 bamaranger said.............sell yours and buy a deer/police barrel. don't cut it!!
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Old May 24, 2012, 06:47 AM   #11
jaguarxk120
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+1 as what bamaranger said.
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Old May 28, 2012, 07:37 PM   #12
DaStray
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Thanks for all the replies and sage advice. Upon reading all your replies, I think I`ll just order another barrel instead of cutting the existing vent rib down to size. I suspect I could do it but would, in all likelihood, bugger it up in some fashion like getting the bead sight off-center or muzzle unevenly cut.
Besides, I rather like the option of rifle sights (in case I want to shoot slugs)
which I wouldn`t have with the bead sight.
Thanks again...
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Old May 28, 2012, 08:36 PM   #13
LSnSC
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Remington makes a 21" Vent Rib Remchoke barrel for the 870 Supermag. It also fits the Express. I bought one for $175.
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Old June 2, 2012, 11:54 AM   #14
Acorn
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CDNN Investments has short 3" 870 barrels for $69. I'm too lazy to look but they were either 18" or 20".
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Old June 2, 2012, 12:08 PM   #15
TheKlawMan
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That's a deal, Acorn.

http://www.cdnninvestments.com/re87012cybod.html

it's a 20" barrel.

Brand New • Target Sports Tactical • Remington 870 12/20/3" Cylinder Bore Defense Barrel • Matte Black • Only fire 3" Shells when using 3" Magnum Receivers!
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Old June 3, 2012, 10:09 AM   #16
zippy13
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Quote:
Using your "sawed off" in an actual SD shoot might create legal toe holds in subsequent civil actions that could bring grief later.
Bamaranger makes an interesting point. Killer reloads or tacti-cool add-ons don't help if a litigator is trying to paint you as a trigger happy vigilante.
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