View Full Version : 870 Express or Win. Defender

December 9, 2006, 06:58 PM
Did Winchester stop making ALL firearms?

Choice between a Remington 870 Express 7 shot tube and Winchester Defender, which would you choose and why?

December 9, 2006, 07:18 PM
I believe they did stop. The 870, without question, is your best choice. It is a well made, quality gun with a proven record. Don't let anyone downplay the Express. Wingmaster is a prettier model, and finished better, but the quality is still there.

December 9, 2006, 08:12 PM
No, Winchester did not close shop all together, but all they're still making is their higher end stuff. 1300s are no more along with every other gun that made them famous. I snagged one of the last new-in-box Defenders I could find in my area last March (although I was still in Houston at the time). I was trying to decide between a Mossy 500, Remington 870, and the Defender when I suddenly found it was getting difficult to find the Defenders new. When I finally located two that were in back at a Gander Mountain, I made an impulse buy on it.

December 14, 2006, 08:19 AM
I have owned both of these. Currently I choose the 870. Both are great shotguns. For me it's personal preference. I like the 870's release lever and the overall fit works for me and my wife.

Dave McC
December 14, 2006, 09:43 AM
Both are good shotguns, but the 870 will still be around when we have colonized Mars.

I started trying to wear out 870s in the 50s. Haven't yet. Some of mine have 20K rounds behind them. No probs beyond a pair of firing pin springs.

December 14, 2006, 10:03 AM
870 hands down.

The fit and finish on a 870 are better than the Winny. Even the 870 Express will out last you and your kids. They are hard to destroy.

As I understand it Winchester has not made shotguns for a long time. Winchester is only a name. The Guns were produced by FN Herstal.

The Olin Corporation now has the rights to produce the guns but I am not sure they even have production yet.

December 14, 2006, 10:03 AM
Personal preference, I like the Defender. It is not as robust as a Remington but works just as well.

December 14, 2006, 10:16 AM
I agree you can't go wrong with an 870, and I would in fact buy one if the right deal ever came along. I won't be getting rid of the Defender, though. It's proven itself to me, and I don't think I'll be able to wear it out in my lifetime. The only real conceivable argument I've heard for the 870 is less felt recoil due to the slightly higher weight. Personally, between my 1300 and the 870 I shot (not sure what the exact model was, but it was comparable to my Defender) the difference was negligible. There are also more "goodies" for the 870 if that sort of thing tickles your fancy. I leave mine basically stock.

December 14, 2006, 10:47 AM
remington 870 express will last forever no problems either

December 14, 2006, 11:04 AM
870.I've had both a defender and an 870.I beat my shotguns around and am hard on them.The defender lost every bit of bluing/finish from the forearm after 1 week of use,I purchased it new.I dont know if it was me racking it too hard,too fast or the fit of the forearm vs the mag tube dimensions.I sold it for 125 bucks after 2 weeks of use.

The 870, my old standby, is an express magnum with a choate 8 shot extension on it for HD.its been many years and all the finish is still there except on the bolt, which has lost most of it.Im considering swapping out the bolt and trigger gr/mag latch for one out of an old police gun that is chromed for slicker action.Its taken many cottontails,varmits, and a few coyotes that were getting too close.I have a trap barrel for it and though I dont win much, it does well against my friends winchester semiauto at the bird stations,his remy 1100 is broken with yet another gas ring problem.I like its dual purpose, one thing a defender didnt have.

December 14, 2006, 12:33 PM
If you really want a 1300 you can get the FN police model, it's the same shotgun. I don't think it's worth the money frankly, but you can have that particular model if that's what you were angling for...

December 14, 2006, 01:53 PM
That's quite true about the finish on the mag tube wearing where the fore arm rides. The finish on the slide arms is also wearing on mine. It doesn't bother me, but it might bother others. I know other guns wear there, too, but it didn't take long at all for mine to start looking polished.

December 14, 2006, 04:01 PM
I'll take the 1300 (and I did x3). I prefer the location of the controls on the 1300 compared to the 870. They are easier for me to use. The 1300 is going to last as long as you will want to use it. Handle them both and get the one you like.

December 14, 2006, 05:28 PM
Rem 870 for me. I have used them on clays, doves, falling plates. I like the Remchokes, hte accessories that are available as plentiful as for a Ruger 10/22.

There is a reason why they are so popular.