View Full Version : Win 1300 vs. Rem 870...

May 10, 2005, 06:21 PM
Forgive me if this has been brought up before - this is the first time I've accessed the shotgun room....I think the concensus is, given the choice, that the Rem 870 is the preferred (18 in, home defense weapon) but just how far off is the Win 1300 in terms of quality and reliability? I am in the market. Thanks guys.

May 10, 2005, 06:43 PM
Compared to the 870's, the Winchester's have a heavier reciever and action.

Other than that, the 870 is usually cheaper and will work just as good.

May 10, 2005, 07:07 PM
Jon, you sure you don't have that turned around? The 870 is usually more $ than the 1300 from what I've seen.

May 10, 2005, 07:11 PM
Well.. maybe in your area..

Around here a gently used 870 is in the $175-200 range, Winchesters are about 20-50 bucks more for some reason.

May 10, 2005, 07:15 PM
That's very interesting. Just the opposite in Virginia where I live. I was always under the impression the 870 was the better gun.

May 10, 2005, 07:15 PM
I wouldn't trade my 1300 for an 870 on a bet. FAST pump and every bit as reliable in my experience. matter of fact... I'd say the 1300 would convert auto loader guys to pump action guys if they gave it a chance...

May 10, 2005, 07:41 PM
I thought too the Win has an aluminum alloy receiver making it lighter then the Rem 870.

I guess to you have to make a distinction between the Rem 870 Express and the Rem 870 Police models which have upgraded parts.

May 10, 2005, 08:37 PM
Winchester 1300 8 shot Defender - 6lbs 8oz
Remington Express 7 shot HD - 7lbs 4 oz

From the Winchester and Remington web pages.

Little weight difference between comparable Remington Express, Police, and Wingmaster models.

May 10, 2005, 08:41 PM
Both the 870 and 1300 are good quality guns.

The 870 Police shotgun has "improved" parts added for heavy service or longer service life. The standard commercial 870, however, will last a lifetime for most people.

The 1300 does have an Aluminium receiver, however that's not a basis for complaint. Remember that a shotshell goes into the steel barrel and is locked in by the bolt's locking lugs when it goes bang. This allows Benelli to use a carbon-fiber receiver in their Nova line. The 1300 is lighter and, I think, has a slightly faster pump action. New ones are coming from the factory with the Hi-Viz fiber optic sight which is perfect for those low-light home defense situations.

Either gun with an 18" to 21" barrel, loaded with #4 shot and/or #4 buckshot is more than adequate for home defense. I favor the 1300 because of the larger magazine capacity and the controls are slightly easier for ME to work.

By the way, both guns are available in 20ga too.

May 10, 2005, 11:47 PM
Right to those who point out the Winchester's aluminum receiver. This makes this weapon lighter, yet given that the rotating locking lugs engage the barrel extension they give up nothing in durability. I own two of them, one an 18 inch bbl Defender with an 8 rnd mag, and the other a 22" bbl in their "turkey" config. Both have black plastic stocks, and I shoot 18s on the skeet field with the turkey gun and a skeet choke.
If you had to beat the snot out of the weapon in a police cruiser for the next twelve years, a steel receiver might give one added reassurance of durability. Most of us don't.

May 12, 2005, 10:50 AM
I have both the standard issue 870 and newer 1300s. Both are good guns but for HD give the nod to the 870 for 2 reasons. 1) faster cycling... though my 1300's have not seen the action my 870 has, they are very tight guns... too tight in my opinion; 2) I have never successfully dropped a shell into the ejection port of the 1300 and easily chamber it while the 870 just eats them up. I consider the 1300 a better gun for people of short stature or arm length as the forestock is set back further than the 870 and allows people with shorter arms to maintain some bend in the elbow to better control and cycle the gun. You can get either used for about $160 around here and another $50 for a used 18" smoothbore barrel.

Forgot something. The 1300 are supposed to handle the 2 1/2" MINI (aguila) shells without feeding problems, the 870 will not. This lets you stuff a few more rounds in the mag.

May 12, 2005, 11:15 AM
Thanks! Anyone using a Knoxx Comp Stock or Spec Ops?

May 14, 2005, 09:34 AM
I think we need to differentiate between the Remington 870 Express/Home Defender and the 870 Police - the latter being an upgraded model with stronger springs, sear, metal receiver, hand-fitting, etc. and a cost difference of about a hundred bucks.

Here's the question....would you say that the Win 1300 Defender and the Rem Express or Home Defender are equal in terms of quality and performance? Forget the 870 Police model for a moment.

Discuss among yourselves. :)

May 14, 2005, 02:25 PM
...stronger springs, sear, metal receiver, hand-fitting...
I have an 870 express and a Police Magnum...I see no difference in the aforementioned parts other than the finish on the exterior of the barrel and receiver. The 870 PM handfitted? I really find that hard to believe...

May 14, 2005, 03:46 PM
From research on the web (copy and pasted):

The Remington Police Magnum shotgun is built heavier to withstand the abuse and pounding that police departments inflict on their gear. It has a metal trigger assembly versus the Express's plastic assembly. The Police Magnum also has heavier springs (7 lb. sear disconnect spring versus's the Express's 5 lb. disconnect spring). The Police Magnum has a 22 inch magazine spring versus a 16 inch magazine spring in the Express.
The Police gun comes with a heavier lifter spring. Each Police Magnum comes with front and rear sling swivel studs.

From another site (copy and pasted)

The Police Magnum has a parkerized finish on all parts where the Express uses a bead-blasted blue finish. The Police Magnum does not have dimples in the magazine tube to "prevent" the owner from installing a magazine extension. The Police Magnum does not have a J-Lock on the safety. The Police Magnum has an aluminum trigger guard where the Express uses plastic.

The Police Magnum is final fitted by hand and the Express is machine fitted. The Police Magnum also has heavier springs (7 lb. sear disconnect spring versus the Express's 5 lb. disconnect spring). The Police Magnum has a 22 inch magazine spring versus a 16 inch magazine spring in the Express. The Police Magnum comes with a heavier lifter spring. The Police Magnum comes with front and rear sling swivel studs. The Police Magnum has a shorter, horizontally ribbed (not checkered) foregrip. The Police Magnum uses a bar-stock milled extractor where the Express uses an MIM extractor. The Police Magnum also uses a thicker barrel than the 18" Express or Home Defense.

A big plus to the 870 line compared to Mossberg and Winchester is that Remington uses a steel framed, forged and milled shotgun while Mossberg and Winchester's are cast aluminum.

I cannot attest to the accuracy of the above descriptions but this is what I learned.

May 14, 2005, 07:26 PM
I cant speak to the springs, but what I read doesn't square with my Police and my Express...my police magnum (three years old) is polished and blued, and came with no swivels. The trigger guard on my Express is aluminum (I guess it's because it's over ten years old) and not dimpled. I haven't tested spring tension but there is nary a difference in the feel of the triggers or on the other springs in the two TGs when I have them out side by side.

May 14, 2005, 09:47 PM
The most pertinent difference I've noted (besides the weight) is that there seem to be more accessories for the 870.

May 14, 2005, 09:55 PM
Speaking from the perspective of the repair shop, the 870 is five times the shotgun that a 1300 or a Mossy is


May 14, 2005, 10:08 PM
Romulus, you sure you didn't get a knock-off "Lemington 870 Porice" made in Taiwan? I mean it happens all the time with Rolex ("Lolex") watches and Yves Saint Laurent purses LOL. :D. I bought one of 'em myself in Korea (not the purse the watch). By golly, they look just like the real thing and my "Lolex" was quite a performer (for a few months anyway).

Seriously, I can't explain the discrepancies between your Rem 870 and what is noted in the copy and past posts I provided. You said that your gun is 3 years old so that could be one reason. But by every account the Rem 870P is a beefed-up version designed for hard use. Only the perspective buyer can decide whether it's worth the additional cost.

Alaska, I lost ya. What repair shop? Or am I just being slow tonight :)

May 20, 2005, 11:09 AM
Any of the "Big Four" USA-made shotguns will serve your needs well. And your kids needs, and maybe even the grandkids needs. In no particular order, the USA Big Four are Remington, Mossberg, Winchester, Ithaca.

The Remington 870 is arguably the most popular pump gun ever made. Go to your local shop/range and see what fits you the best....Handling, pointability, location of the controls, balance, check weld, etc.

That being said, I happen to be a Mossberg guy. As much as I like the looks of the Classsic 870 Wingmaster, the 'fit' just doesn't suit me. If the Winchester 'fits' you the best, there you are. Issue resolved.

May 20, 2005, 11:18 AM
That's really the nuts and bolts of it.

Pick a 870, 1300, 500/590, or a 37. Reality is that almost always the shooter is going to be the determining factor in whether or not it works as advertised. The shotgun is just a tool. So long as you choose a decent one the rest is up to you.

Painting with a very broad brush, almost all the issues related to shotgun quality occur when 1 gun or a group of guns are shared among multiple shooters in a work enviroment (LEO, military, security, etc).

May 20, 2005, 01:42 PM
Romulus, you sure you didn't get a knock-off "Lemington 870 Porice" made in Taiwan?...But by every account the Rem 870P is a beefed-up version designed for hard use. Only the perspective buyer can decide whether it's worth the additional cost.

hehe, nope, it's the genoo-ine article...and it has "Police Magnum" stamped on the receiver. Regarding the beefed-up Police magnum: If anything the receiver on the Express is beefier, as this is not ground and polished, and has no milled and serrated flat on the top like the Police receiver. Less metal removed in finishing operations makes for more metal, hence for a beefier product. From the looks of it, the receiver billet of the Express is internally machined only, while the exterior (you can still see the wrinkles from the trip hammer or whatever those marks are) is merely blasted with traffic bond (or black beauty on a good day.) The amount removed in finishing the Police receiver is marginal, I guess, but it ends up with less metal nonetheless.

I remember miking the two barrels after hearing about the Police "heavier" barrel and again the Express RS barrel miked in marginally bigger OD than the beaded polished and blued Police barrel.

Methinks a lot of myth surrounds the Police. It sure is purtier, though...

May 20, 2005, 04:29 PM
I've owned a Mossberg 500, a couple of 870s and a couple of Ithaca 37s in the past. I currently own a Win 1300 and a Benneli Nova. I've liked them all but each have their own "character" and plusses and minusses, depending on your individual preferences and needs. For instance, I prefer steel receivers for no better reason than I am kind of traditional minded (yes, I know I have a Nova! :) ) and I guess the bottom ejection feature offered by the Ithaca and the Bowning BPS ( as well as the long discontinued Marlin 120-which I also used to own ) is a good idea. The location of the saftey is important to me: the best spot IMO is on the tang (like on the Mossberg and the BPS) and the next best(though awfully easy to disengage inadvertently) is situated ON the rear of the trigger guard (as on the long discontinued Browning DoubleAuto). I do much prefer a safety located in the front area of the trigger guard (as on the 1300 and the Nova) as opposed to being mounted on the back area (like the Ithaca and the Remington) of the guard...One reason I decided on the 1300 over the 870 was the method of mounting a scope: the 1300 is drilled and tapped for conventional bases (which is included in the purchase) whereas the 870 relies on a cantelever system (which I personally don't care for). IMO, again, it really does come down to what features are most important for each individual.FWIW IMO without a doubt, the best American made pump shotgun FOR THE MONEY is the Mossberg 500-and that's been the case for a LONG time!

May 20, 2005, 05:04 PM
I think the cantilever is a brilliant idea...it minimizes, if not eliminates, the need to rezero the scope after the barrel is removed for cleaning or other service

May 20, 2005, 06:43 PM
A good point, Romulus, and I wouldn't argue it except to say in my experience in removing the barrel and replacing it more than a few times with a scope mounted on my Win 1300, I have not noticed any significant change in the point of impact at 75 yard distances. Other 1300s and certainly other makes might well fare differently. A cantilever mounting system would seem to mitigate a potential change of point of impact problem. IMO, they sure are UGLY though :barf: ...

May 20, 2005, 07:11 PM
IMO, they sure are UGLY though :barf: ...
I hear you there, brother