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Bought 870 Express Tactical Today ?s

Discussion in 'Tactical Shotguns' started by hsprincipal, Jan 27, 2013.

  1. glockman99

    glockman99 Millennium Member

    Jul 1, 1999
    Hoquiam, WA USA
    A +2 magazine extention works perfectly with an 18.5" barrel.
  2. 870's are good shotguns, but it is a low end product, and does have it's weaknesses. My first one had an issue caused by poor shell latch staking. In seeking the cure, I found there are a few things you can do to head off possible problems.

    I got a latch staker ($24 at Brownells) and stake the shell latches, even if they aren't loose. My first one had an issue caused by poor staking, and the latch ended up coming completely out, and seeing how easily that can occur, for a HD firearm, I proactively stake the latches.

    A couple tweaks I learned from

    Polish the chamber. If you have a Dremel (designed and marketed by gunsmiths to help their business) you can get a polishing wheel and some metal polish, and make it smooth as silk. You are using a soft polishing wheel, so you'll have to work really hard to hurt the gun.

    Another is to widen the ejection port. It helps ejection and "tactical reloading" from the sidesaddle. It's a simple operation, that might prove worthwhile.

    LOTS of fun stuff at

  3. Buffering

    Buffering The Cooler

    Aug 8, 2005
    Rocking the Casbah
    Having the hawtness for Katherine Hepburn with just one eye has made you think goofy thoughts.
  4. I'l have to remember that cause I'm probably be replacing my 21''+ for an 18.5.
  5. Not at all.

    As mentioned, my first 870 Express (bought second hand in the early 90's, sold to me probably because of the problems) had a shell latch problem that caused malfunctions. At first, it only happened occasionally, but then got to where it happened every time. Years ago, I took a HD Shotgun class and part of the discussion was an issue SOME 870 Express' had. I forget the specifics, but the slots in the shell carrier were a response to some problem. I think my shell latch issue was what he was referring to. If not, there is more than one issue.

    The double feed issue with an 870 must be fairly prevalent, as it and it's remedy are described on

    Fast forward a few years, and I bought an 870 Express Super Magnum, because I couldn't count on the first one for HD. I was reluctant to buy the S.M. because there WAS a known problem with ejection, but the clerk at the LGS acknowledged the problem, and said it had been addressed. There they go again....... He also said he had seen buttstocks split from people hitting the ground trying to eject the hull. The first shot, with my BRAND NEW, "improved" Remington 870 Express Super Magnum, the shell stuck in the chamber and wouldn't eject. I didn't slam it on the ground, but took it home and disassembled it and used a rod to get the hull out. Polished the chamber, same ammo, the problem didn't happen again. So far, it's functioned flawlessly with several different types of ammo, bird shot, slug, and buck shot.

    Oddly enough, when searching for an answer to my Super Magnum's problem, I found the shell latch problem. I staked the shell latches and have not replicated any issue in hundreds of tries. Now I have two exceptional HD shotguns, that I wouldn't have any problem taking to N. Dallas.

    If you look around the web, you'll see that there are a number of 870's that do have MINOR issues. But so does anything else mass produced.

    When you polish it up and stake the shell latches, you have a damn fine firearm.

    I am running at a 100% rate of issues with Remington 870 Express'. But I won't hesitate to buy another, now that I know what to do with them. Think about it, the first one was a dud, and I bought another. Yes, I love Remington products. Now I have two good 870 Express' that I can count on.

    I actually enjoy doing tweaks like polishing the chambers and staking the latches. Things like that are fun to do on a nasty winter Saturday after the hunting seasons close.

    And now, thanks to my Remington 870 Express Super Magnum, and the issues I had with it, I have a very good understanding of the inner workings of the firearm. Like how the action bars activate the left and right shell latch. Never really paid much attention to it before.
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2013
  6. MajorD


    Aug 16, 2010
    I bought the 870 express home defense ( came from the factory with the mag extension) and have a lot of rounds through it ( not an a avid Sg guy but were probably talking over a thousand rounds) with no issues at all