View Full Version : Converting safety on 870 to lefty?

July 22, 2001, 11:45 AM
I couldn't find any threads on this topic, so I'll have to ask again.
This question is in regard to an older Wingmaster. Can the safety button be reversed somehow, or will it require a new safety? I didn't see any lefthand safeties in the Brownells catalogue, so I'm assuming the former to be the case. If it is the case, can that oversized SGT (wilson) safety be used?

I fooled around with mine for an hour last night trying to reverse the current one and couldn't seem to make it work. Then that d*mn little spring shot across the room (still can't locate it) and I gave up. I plan on ordering that spring (or 3 or 4) from Brownells tomorrow, and possibly a new safety if that is what is required - if there is such an animal.

Once again -thanks in advance for your help. Atticus

dick w. holliday
July 22, 2001, 01:05 PM
somebody makes them cause i got one years ago from somewhere..its a big head job and no they are not reversible...they are out there somewhere -- i bet if you call Brownells they probably have them....Good luck....Dick

July 23, 2001, 07:14 AM
Reversing the safety requires a left-hand trigger plate. Jerry Kuhnhausen mentions a procedure for modifying the right-hand trigger plate in his manual on Remington Shotguns. That procedure is not something for the hobbyist to tackle. If you can find a left-hand trigger plate, it is a matter of moving the parts from one to the other. I think the "Trigger Plate Assembly" comes with the parts already provided and mounted. Brownells shows those for a retail price of $75.

July 23, 2001, 08:16 AM
Thanks Gents: I just got off the phone with Brownells tech support. I'm hosed! No one makes a LH safety, and that assembly will only work on the lefty models. Looks like the Jerry Kuhnhausen (sp?) alteration is my only option. Smithy time I guess. Oh well.... us lefties have to be adaptable.

Dave McC
July 23, 2001, 08:58 AM
ATTICUS maybe a software fix for a hardware prob(G)....

I'm not a southpaw at present. However, I've a fair amount of offside shooting, and I take off the safety by hitting it with my left thumb during the mount. This makes the shotgun torque around the grip area a bit but does not slow things up much if at all. I've big hands, so this may be more difficult for you, but give it a try before rejecting it out of hand. If nothing else, it's way cheaper....

July 23, 2001, 09:13 AM
Yes, a safety can be reversed for left hand. But it should be left to a gunsmith. It invovles plugging current hole and drilling new hole. Also if you do reverse it be careful letting anyone else use or handle your gun as they might think that the safe is on when in fact it is not.

July 23, 2001, 09:49 AM
Dave: I can usually use my left hand middle finger to move the switch, and will probably do that for the time being. I have two Ithicas which are converted to LH safeties and I would like to stay consistant to avoid confusion.

But on the other hand...Ive used righty shotguns all my life and that old middle finger habit cost me a deer last year. A white tail literally ran me over because I was was "double safeing" the SG with my middle finger from the wrong side. I don't want to experience that confusion at two am with a BG someday.

I have to admit that I don't practice nearly enough with the SG's and that needs to change. Probably a lot more important than the setup.

Thanks to all for the input! :)

Dave McC
July 23, 2001, 10:43 AM
You're quite welcome,Atticus. Agreed on both consistency and the need for practice....

July 23, 2001, 01:38 PM
I've converted my 870, 11-87, 7400 and 7600 to left hand safety. It's pretty straight forward if you have access to a mill or a good drill press with tight table and vise. The safety ball/spring is offset relative to trigger group centerline, this is what prevents you from simply turning the safety around and re-installing.

Mesure the offset and drill a new hole on the other side, this hole must be clocked (CW when viewed from left hand side of weapon)so that it does not collide with the original hole. Then a hole is drilled perpendicular to the new safety ball/spring hole for the cross pin.

With this mod I can switch trigger groups from RH safety to LH safety in a matter of minutes.