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Old February 17, 2020, 08:08 AM   #1
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870 Historians needed

I have an older Wingmaster and believe it to be all original (but who knows of course relative to the barrel). Assuming it is I am curious about two things.

1. What was Remington envisioning this particular configuration would be used for - Magnum (marked) receiver, 30 inch fixed full choke barrel which is also marked "for 3 inch shells?" Wouldn't be for trap and if just a general purpose magnum gun, why a full choke?

2. I would like to own another barrel with a different choke. Has there ever been a model made that came with a fixed modified choked barrel that was also with a three inch chamber? I would like a three inch chamber with mod choke and am trying to avoid having the current barrel threaded. I am also trying to avoid just buying a current production barrel with RemChokes.

Thanks guys.
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Old February 17, 2020, 08:44 AM   #2
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30" Fixed full choke with 3" chamber was intended for waterfowl hunters. Traditionally 30' barrels were full choke, 28" were modified and 26" were Improved Cylinder before the change to choke tubes. But there are exceptions. Some 28" barrels were full choke.

I don't know how easy it would be to find one but there are probably some fixed choke barrels out there for sale. Lots of guys converted to the newer barrels that are threaded. There are probably some fixed choke barrels sitting in closets unused that could be bought. Might try placing a "want to buy" ad in the classifieds here and on other gun related forums.
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Old February 17, 2020, 09:48 AM   #3
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Are any of those 28 inch mod barrels chambered for three inch shells? If not, there's no point in looking; I should just thread my barrel or buy a new Remchoke barrel. Right?
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Old February 17, 2020, 10:04 AM   #4
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ebay will be your friend for this...lots of barrels for 870 and 1100 remintions on there

if you want to keep you original barrel you could buy another and have it threaded ,,,,unless you want to shoot 3" shells you can use a 2 3/4 barrel on that receiver with no problems

i kinda doubt you find a modified choked 3" barrel but you might ,,,be worth a look,,,not sure if remington made them that way

and usually fixed choke barrels go kinda cheap

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Old February 17, 2020, 10:48 AM   #5
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No help with your quest, but, I have a 1975 870 Wingmaster in 20ga. 28" barrel, fixed mod, and it also came with a 26" barrel with fixed Imp Cyl. No vent rib on either.
Love that shotgun. Good luck in your search.
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Old February 18, 2020, 02:20 PM   #6
T. O'Heir
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"...why a full choke?..." Water fowl. 3" is more about geese, but also ducks at slightly longer ranges.
Have a Wingmaster I bought in about 1979/80. (Wingmasters were not always Remington's high end shotgun.) It came with a 30" full choke barrel. Several years ago(15 or more years after I bought the thing), I put a 20" slug barrel on it with no fuss of any kind. An 870 is an 870.
Brownell's lists Carlson 28", 3" fixed, Mod choke 870 barrels at $176.
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Old February 20, 2020, 05:31 PM   #7
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I've got an 870 so marked, and it is from 1980. When purchased, it came with a 30" , vent ribbed full choke barrel. I found that way to long, and tight for general use, and ended up with a pair of 26" tubes, full and IC.
the IC tube was 2-3/4", the full was 3". Both looked and swung the same.
With 2-3/4" short magnums, (1-1/2 of lead #5 or #6) it gave me saturation fire on decoyed ducks (no steel shot in my zones) to about to about 35 yds and was a good combo on the small water I hunted. Lighter game loads served for everything else. The full choke barrel was for pass shooting doves in orchards and for gobblers.

Fifty years ago ( and more) full choke was often touted as the "game gettin" choke and long barrels were also erroneously thought to add range as well. The popularity of full choke may have had something to do with the quality of the old shotshells and wads. But modern shells with their shotcups turned things around, and full was really too full for general small game hunting.

By 1980, beliefs were changing and the quality of shotshells had vastly improved. Remington likely saw that gun as a waterfowl and turkey gun. It might also have served for called predators. But it also catered to those folks who were not contemporary and still believing stuff passed down from years before. At home in a duck blind,the long barrel would have added a wee bit of velocity, and a good bit of sight plane for pass shooting. But I can tell you, that 30" tube was WAY to long to tote ridge to ridge after a wandering gobbler.
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