View Full Version : Which model 870?

September 26, 2002, 01:59 AM
I plan on building one similar to Wilson's but hopefully save me a few bucks. Build it almost to specs actually but plan on saving a few pennies...

Which 870 should I get? There are so many models, express, express this express that, etc. etc. etc....do any of them (NOT the marine magnum) come with a factory extension? I thought I seen one but it could have been the Wilson....

I plan on sending it to Wilson to smoothen the action (after i compare stock and Wilson side to side) as I will be having them install their sites on it anyway.....will be getting the Surefire...in fact it'll probably be the same gun except for maybe the sling.

Or should I just buy an ST/Wilson?

Navy joe
September 26, 2002, 03:46 AM
The "Police" model comes with a full length tube, my 18" gun is 6+1, it has a good follower, mag extension is parkerized to match rest of gun, 2-3/4" & 3" capacity, no silly engraving on the receiver. I resisted the ghost ring urge, installed a do it yerself fiberoptic & a sidesaddle, usually wears an Eagle buttbag/ cheekpad too, improve the cheekweld, accuracy is fine without the exspensive sights.

Dave McC
September 26, 2002, 05:23 AM
You might get some good ideas from an old thread about a Kitchen Table 870. I started from parts, but it'd be simpler to use a beater police turnin for the base.BTW, many older turnins are WMs, not the various modern Express and "Police" versions.

Nice thing about this approach, one can take one step at a time and still have a good working 870.

And, both Frank and my two gotos have nice smooth actions from use and proper maintenance.No power hones, just work polishing and good lubes.

ST,Vang,etc,do very good work from what I hear. But 870s are not Space Shuttles, and it doesn't take a rocket scientist to upgrade one.

A smith should do trigger and bbl work like the cone, but someone with a bit of skill,a selection of basic tools and Kuhnhausen's manual can do quite a lot of tweaking for much less than ST and Vang will charge.

If I can do it, anyone capable of crossing the street on the green light can. I'm definitely no smith.

If I were making up a new "Serious" or GP shotgun, my choice would be one of the smoothbore slug bbls with choke tubes and rifle sights on a dimpleless mag chassis OR one of the shorter "Turkey" bbls on same.The Express Turkey pkg would be an excellent choice for someone who didn't mind de-dimpling.A 23" bbl is not noticably harder to manuever in close quarters than a 20".

And, I'd extend the mag just two shots worth.

After much consideration and handling, I've decided that for most folks, two more shots is the best compromise among weight,balance and capacity.

Any crisis that cannot be handled by a 6+1 870 will not likely be handled by 7-10+1 either.


Joe Mamma
September 26, 2002, 10:36 AM
I would think twice before sending anything to Wilson Combat/Scattergun Technologies or buying anything from them. See my thread:


I would recommend having the work done by any decent local gunsmith with shotgun experience.

Joe Mamma

September 26, 2002, 01:13 PM
Unless you are having the gun refinished, it looks to me like most of the Wilson/Scattergun stuff is bolt-on.
I happen to like the Express finish so I would get an Express Magnum (do they even sell non-magnums anymore?) and then buy and install the stuff you want as you can afford it.
All mine were bought used and now sport refinished wood furniture, 20" rifle-sighted barrels, +3 factory extensions, sling swivels and six-round side saddles. Two of them have AO sites. Two have hi-vis followers and I am testing one of Brownell's stainless followers in another one.
After saving my pennies, I sent a barrel to Vang after much consideration and I have not decided if it was worth it, yet (180.00 delivered). I must say that they were very pleasant and their service was swift. I just need to find some time to do some serious patterning.
I had another barrel done by a local SG outfit, long before I got the Vang-job. They lengthened the forcing cone (40.00) and then later back-bored it for me (100.00). That one is a nice shooter.
I used tips from TFL to smooth the action and thats about it.
In my opinion the money that I saved by doing things myself allowed me to get a couple extra barrels with which to experiment. For some reason it is also easier (financially) for me to do things a little bit at a time.

September 26, 2002, 11:38 PM
870P will do the job. Trying to post photo of one of two CHP turn-in’s I bought about 13 years ago. Dave