View Full Version : Headspace on a shotgun - how important is it?

November 9, 2012, 02:06 PM
I know headspace on a rifle is important. How important is it on a shotgun?

A shotgun fires a lower pressure round. On a shotgun like a Remington 870, people swap barrels without testing for headspace all the time. No one seems to be concerned.

I just purchased a no-go gauge from Brownells. I could not close the gauge on every 870 I own, except one. One of my 870s closed on the gauge. This particular gun had the chamber recut by a gunsmith because of extraction problems.

Should I be concerned from a safety standpoint? The gun reliably functions and it doesn't look like it is making primers flat or bulging cases.

P.S. I took the Express barrel off the gun that failed the no-go. I put it on my Wingmaster and it would not close. Therefore, I think it is real close.