View Full Version : Remington 870 - good or not?

November 17, 2000, 03:56 PM
Hello. I have had no experiences with shotguns before the last 18 months or so. During my tour of duty in the Army, one of the weapons I was trained with was the Remington 870 Police Magnum. The trainers did not speak too highly of them (nothing very specific though), and we often experienced failures to function with them. (Specifically, the weapon would lock up after being fired. Ejecting the fired shell involved striking the butt of the weapon against something hard while working the pump action. There were also other failures to feed/eject from time to time.) But then again, these were not individually issued weapons, so their mainentance was piss-poor at best. Anyway, all in all firing a shotgun turned out to be fun as hell. I'd be interested in getting one myself sometime in the future, once I can afford it. After my experiences, I'd be willing to forget the 870 in favor of some other brand. However, people on these forums seem to like theirs very much, if I have understood correctly? So was the poor performance of the Army's guns the result of their lousy mainentance? (Would some other weapon survived better, or are pump shotguns generally sensitive to mainentance?) Is the 870 a good gun?

(And no, I have not decided to exclude other types of shotguns. More questions to come later...)

November 17, 2000, 04:19 PM
Tony, I suggest you use the "search" feature to look at the massive number of threads covering the 870. You'll find the answers to jusy about any question in these archives.

If you don't, we'll be glad to help out.

And, yes, the 870 is a very good shotgun.


November 17, 2000, 04:23 PM
Uh, I get a "The search function has been disabled by the administrator." from the searcg link.

November 17, 2000, 04:23 PM
Ejecting the fired shell involved striking the butt of the weapon against something hard while working the pump action. There were also other failures to feed/eject from time to time. But then again, these were not individually issued weapons, so their mainentance was piss-poor at best.

You've hit the nail on the head here, tony. I've had my share of different weapons in the six years I've been in the Army and not a single one had ever been properly maintained. Another reason for such a high number of failures is that all of the military issued ammo is crap! Most of the casings are years, if not decades, old and have been reloaded over and over again until malfunctioning is just standard data at the range. Why do you think they drill you on slap, pull, observe, release, tap, shoot (SPORTS) so much! As for the 870, I've had very little personal experience with them but those who have seem to swear by them. I'm considering an 870 Marine Magnum actually. I've never heard a serious complaint about them before.

old hawk
November 17, 2000, 04:42 PM
read my page,most of those failure to ejects are from over tightening the barrel cap nut on the mag tube,remember finger tight then one click,thats it.ive seen the same one instance youve described happen to ithacas and mossys too from the same thing. enjoy my page,email me if need be.

Dave McC
November 17, 2000, 10:54 PM
Tons of old stuff, on why the 870 is Heaven's gift to shotgunners, but I'll hit a few high points....

Police and Correctional Agencies use 870s because they hold up under abuse and neglect better than any other shotgun. Reliability, durability and longevity are needed qualities, and the 870 fills the bill.

One 870 at my old agency was on the line as a training weapon from 1981 to 98, and still may be, I retired then. It received the most perfunctory maintenance, and fired many thousands of rounds.Total parts needed, new wood.To the best of my knowledge, no glitches.

My personal HD 870 was bought used in 1956 or so by my father. Between he and I, 3000-5000 rounds of everything fired, from slugs and 00 to goose loads to skeet. Hasn't jammed up yet, it's kept clean and lubed.And, it locks up tight as a bank vault. Last weekend at the range, it shot back to back cloverleafs with KO slugs at 50 yards.

November 19, 2000, 08:47 PM
Absolutely one of the best if not THE best pump shotgun available today. Thousands in federal, state and local law enforcement CANNOT be wrong!! :D

November 19, 2000, 10:22 PM
Just to let you know I would bet anything I own including my life on my 870 functioning flawlessly. It has never given me a problem in the years that I have owned it. In fact a true story, when out abusing clay pigeons with some friends, somehow my 870 got put down on its bag and somebody must have kicked up some rocks or something. I loaded the shotgun and took my shots and got every one. When I looked into the chamber when I was done to make sure the gun was empty I saw three pebble sized stones in the chamber. The whole time I was firing they were in there. The 870 never skipped a beat. and accuracy was excellent.
Now besides the several things I did wrong, and I learned from them I feel more than confident with my 870 Express magnum

I always take pretty decent care of it. I dont baby it but keep it clean. it gets knocked around enough for some to worry but I never do. Anybody who ever asks me what shotgun to get i always tell them the 870 is my first choice.

Bam Bam
November 19, 2000, 10:54 PM
I have Rem 870 in 20 ga. and it works fine. Don't forget, these are the best selling shotguns in the world. I also recommend the Win 1300. Actually, I think the Win is a more elegant design. You can't go wrong with either.

November 19, 2000, 10:59 PM
I love my 870,just got back from deer hunting.I droped a buck at 65 yards using 2 3/4"Brenneke K.O.s,with a 2 power simmons scope.It preformed without a hitch.One shot ,one kill.I highly recemend getting one.Good luck Sinjin.

November 20, 2000, 12:38 PM
I've got a 27 year old 870 and hve had no problems with it. I just bought a 18.5 inch barrel for the gun for HD. That tells you I would stake my life on it. Good luck.

November 20, 2000, 08:09 PM
Rem 870 is good. My friends have 870s and the only time it fails is when they reload cheap hulls.


Bennett Richards
November 21, 2000, 02:23 AM
Was watching a Discovery show on the SEALS last night and when they filmed a SEAK dynamic entry there was a good old 870 second or third through the door. Was equiped with a SureFire foregrip. If the SEALS use it, it can't be THAT bad a weapon.


Dave McC
November 21, 2000, 07:19 AM
Ben, a positive use of our tax money for once(G)....

Let's put it this way. If I were to be in harms' way, a close range scenario, and had my pick of weapons, I'd take an 870. No Uzis, MP-5s, AKs,Lazer beams, Light Sabers, tactical nukes, etc, just an 870,with proper ammo and a short list of mods and add ons.

November 23, 2000, 04:40 AM
I own 3 Remingtons and 1 Browning that I use to hunt with. All are good guns. I am getting ready to buy my first "Tactical " shotgun which will also be my first Mossberg. It has an 18" barrel is 8 shot and already comes with a heat shield. I will also add a few other things. Sure fire light, side saddle, etc...
Only reason I went with Mossberg is because I was told that Remington is now doing some things that makes it harder to find mag extensions, etc... May not be true but I think that Mossberg makes a fine shotgun as well.

Dave McC
November 23, 2000, 06:07 AM
1911, with the huge number of good used 870s out there, one can still get the finest pump gun in existence w/o the PC %^&*( that Remington is now offering.

Unless your eye hand co-ordination reaches superhuman levels, I'd suggest you get a Serious shotgun of the same make and model as your sporting arms. This means, that at a time when you need no fumbles, you won't be reaching for a slide release or safety in the wrong place...

Ala Dan
November 23, 2000, 07:31 AM
Take Redleg's advice and seek out a Remington 870 Marine Magnum.:) You won't be sorry!!!:D Absolutely, the finest
pump shotgun available; bar none.:rolleyes::eek:

Best Wishes,
Ala Dan, N.R.A. Life Member

November 26, 2000, 05:21 PM
In fairness to the Mossberg tactical shootguns, they are very good.

The 870s are also very good, and classic, to boot.

Which one, if one is all you want? Try 'em both, then decide.