View Full Version : Defender or 870 ?

August 30, 2002, 12:35 AM
Would like some feedback on the Winchester Defender (or Camp Gun) and the Remington 870. Why is the 870 more popular? Also, which one is more reliable, faster, durable, ect. I want a multi-purpose shot gun, much like the Winchester Camp Gun. Thanks, JohnH

Dave McC
August 30, 2002, 05:39 AM
John,there's a few gigs of stuff in the Archives on these shotguns. A few high points.

Any of the Big Four will give good service for at least one generation of shotgunner. The 870 may be the most durable. It's the most popular for that reason and because it was the first GOOD pump that used stamped parts instead of machined ones like the Model 31 Remington or the Model 12 Winchester.

More aftermarket goodies are out there for the 870 than the rest combined.

All that said, the Winnie is a good shotgun.

Both are available with short or long barrels, choke tubes, rifled bores, etc.

The Winnie is a bit lighter(mixed blessing, kicks more all else equal) and costs a bit less.

With 8 million made, the 870 has more used ones floating around, and we can get a lot of value for a little cash buying used.

I'm gonna weasel out of which is better and invoke the McCRule....

"Get the one that FEELS Better"....

August 30, 2002, 06:18 AM
both fine shotguns

i bought the winnie because i'm left handed.

the slide release is much easier to manipulate for me.:)


August 30, 2002, 06:22 AM
There seems like there are a lot more 870 fans on this board than any other shotgun. I ended up chosing the 1300 Defender/Camp Model. The shotgun in my opinion is very versatile. It came with a 22" barrel with rifled sights. I bought this particular model for a camp/trail gun for up in the mountains. It makes for a good home defense weapon and if you chose you could use it to hunt upland game. The pump is super smooth upon operation and it comes with a 3" Chamber. Both the 870 and 1300 would/could serve your needs.


August 30, 2002, 01:51 PM
Dave McC, clown, and Cody; thank you gentlemen for your opinions. Sounds like they're both good guns. I'll have to put my hands on both and decide. Really am leaning toward the Camp Gun because of its versatility. Thanks again. JohnH

August 30, 2002, 04:39 PM

I'd go with the Winchester all the way. I was in the same predicament that you are two years ago.... I was after a defender, and couldn't find one... then found one... but the "camp" defender came out... I REALLY liked the idea of having a choked shorter barrel allowing use as a grouse/pheasant, deer, and HD gun. Then I sought the advice of the local gun shop guy (which by the way knows his $hi^)

I opted for a Win 1300 Black Shadow Turkey. it's got all that the camp defener has, but with a regular 1300 22" barrel (allowing a swap to a longer barrel if desired in the future) and with a mag tube extension reaches capacities of the regular defender. It also is choked and tapped for a scope mount. AND the kicker is that it ended up being cheaper.

I also see that they've added an 18" "turkey" model...

All in all it's functioned with out so much as a hickup. I'd look into this option as well...

Happy shopping

August 30, 2002, 10:00 PM

Why? They just plain work! Day after day, decade after decade.

Sort of the 1911 of shotguns.

August 31, 2002, 12:57 PM
I think they're both great guns and I've owned both.
IMHO, ergonomics are better on the Winchesters (very subjective)and I think 1300's come with the slickest/smoothest actions out of the box.

August 31, 2002, 01:17 PM
Get the Defender. There is nothing wrong with it. You also get an extra shot.

September 2, 2002, 10:42 PM
Get the 870. Defender is a rust magnet. A relative has one and over the years my 870 has shined in comparison to his defender. He wants an 870 now.

870!!! :D