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Remington 870
Length Overall Barrel Length Weight  Gauge Action Type Magazine Capacity
46/36 Inches 28" 7 ½ Pounds 12ga Pump 9+1

        The Remington 870 shotgun, is THE classic pump gun, and one of the most dependable and respected shotguns around. This was originally offered in a fancy deep blue, with nice wood furniture, and called the Wingmaster. This is my favorite pump action shotgun, and is the most popular shotgun design ever produced. The bolt, and lock of this gun are actually based upon that of the Remington 1100 semi auto shotgun. What the pump sacrifices to the auto is a slight measure of speed, although as fast as a pump can be cycled, I must emphasize the word, slight. What it gains is absolute reliability. Pump guns do not stovepipe, and are not made useless by a dud round, though improper handling may cause them to short shuck. They do not concern themselves with the power of a load or the burning characteristics of it's powder. The Remington has dual action bars working the slide, which makes for smooth operation. My gun is equipped with a full choke insert on a 28" barrel. It also has a magazine extension which gives it 10 rounds if you park one in the chamber. It is the express model with what looks like a parkerized finish (it is actually a bead blasted blue), and a nice vent rib along the top.
     For decades, this has been the shotgun filling gun cabinets, rifle racks, and the mounts of police cruisers and pick up trucks. The 870 has been offered in a variety of finishes, and barrel lengths, over the years, as well as special trap versions, and the Deerslayer, with open sights and a slug friendly, cylinder barrel. The express version sells for around $200, as of this writing, and is the economy model. The gun has been produced in a variety of finishes, and is even offered in a stainless steel model. Because of it's popularity, aftermarket companies offer nearly every conceivable accessory. Chambering are offered in everything from the 410, to the 10 gauge. The first shotgun that I ever owned, and one of my first firearms purchases, back when I was 18, was a standard grade Wingmaster.
     In addition to the magazine extension, this gun has an ATI folding stock, with a pistol grip. With the stock extended, the 870 is 46" long, down a few inches from the 49" length of the factory gun. With the stock folded, the gun measures 36" in length. The folding stick is unlocked by depressing a small button, on the left hand side, just behind the sling stud. For those wondering how you fire a gun of this size, without using a shoulder stock, the answer is simple --- you don't. the stock is folded for storage, and transportation, and then extended for firing. I do have a Mossberg 500, without a shoulder stock; but it is quite a bit shorter than this 870, and is a bit less ungainly. The original stock was nice enough, and functional; but nothing fancy, as can be seen in the photo above, of the stock gun. One thing I should mention about the folding stock is its comfort level - there is none. Shooting a few rounds of trap with this gun so stocked tears up my right hand a bit, particularly around the first joint of the thumb. Still, for a cruiser or a defense gun, you will hopefully not be firing 50 - 100 rounds, and the comfort factor will not really be an issue. My trap guns are now my 1100, and a 20 gauge 870.
     This gun is large and the weight is likely a bit more then the 7 ½ pounds given in the catalogs; the extension must add at least another half a pound. Still, at close range there is nothing more devastating than a shotgun, and if 10 rounds of 12ga can't do the job, then you need a gun that has to be wheeled around rather then one fired from the shoulder.

Installing a folding stock

The ATI top folding stock kit. The kit is designed to fit a variety of shotguns, by using stock inserts between the grip unit, and the receiver of the shotgun. The stock inserts are shown to the right of the photo. Three different sizes of mounting screws are included, for different models of shotgun. The unit is entirely made of polymer.

The first step of the installation is to remove the recoil pad, in order to expose the mounting screw. These screws are removed through two tiny holes in the back of the pad. The screws themselves are phillips types.

With the recoil pad out of the way, a long, blade type screwdriver is inserted down into the stock, to remove the mounting screw.

With the shoulder stock removed, the mounting lug is exposed.

The stock adapter is put in place first, in this case it is the Remington unit.

The receiver with both units in place.

With both units in place, simply select the correct size of bolt, for the particular model of shotgun, and tighten it down with a hex wrench.