Remington 870

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I'm thinking about a Remington 870 that a local shop has on sale for $300. The plan is to use it for home defense. Can anyone tell me if it is MA legal to replace the stock and install pistol grips front and back? What are the advantages/disadvantages to this set-up assuming it is legal? Anything else I need to know about the defensive shotgun?

Regards,
Chris
 
You can add any AWB thing you want to an 870 because it is a pump gun, not semi. $300 seems way high though... I got mine for only 2 bills from collectors a couple years ago. I think the surefire forend cost more than it did... I have a speed feed pistol grip on the rear end, and it doesn't fit me very well... always gets caught up when I raise the gun.
 
"An ideal 12-gauge utility gun featuring an 18" fixed Cylinder choke barrel, single front bead sight, non-glare matte finish and 7-shot capacity. America's best selling shotgun for over 50 years, the Model 870's dependability is legendary. The receiver is milled from a solid billet of steel for strength and durability, and the twin action bars insure smooth, reliable non-binding action. $299.95 ea."

I'm Sgt. Schultz when it comes to shotguns. I just know that this is a popular model with many police/military/defense accessories available. Any help would be appreciated. I believe this model DOES have a 7 shot mag or a tube extension of some sort.

Regards,
Chris
 
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I'm not a big fan of pistol grips on shotguns. They just don't seem to work well for me. It's perfectly legal to do so in MA for a pump shotgun. I'd suggest, however, that first you try it with the conventional stocks and see if works for you.
 
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Something to keep in mind is how a jury will react to seeing your shotgun should you ever be brought into court as a result of your having to shoot someone in your home in self-defense.

The "scary" looks of a tricked-out black shotgun with pistol grip, extended amgazine, folding stock, tactical forend, laser, etc. will likely strike fear in the hearts of a jury (especially 'round these parts), and help prosecutors label you as some kind of Soldier of Fourtune nutjob who was "just looking to shoot someone".

Whereas my home-defense shotgun looks like one that a regular, run-of-the-mill "outdoorsperson" such as our esteemed junior senator might carry.

merrychristmas.JPG


Remington 870 Express Magnum (12 ga.). $225 at the Rockingham park gun show last December.

That, and I just like finding excuses to post pictures of it.
 
I thought about extending the magazine, but decided to leave it as-is.

I'd rather practice with it to the point where 4+1 rounds of 00 buck is sufficient for home defense purposes, than rely on more ammo and less skill behind the trigger.

If I need more than that, I'd be best served calling in air support.
 
mAss Backwards said:
Something to keep in mind is how a jury will react to seeing your shotgun should you ever be brought into court as a result of your having to shoot someone in your home in self-defense.

The "scary" looks of a tricked-out black shotgun with pistol grip, extended amgazine, folding stock, tactical forend, laser, etc. will likely strike fear in the hearts of a jury (especially 'round these parts), and help prosecutors label you as some kind of Soldier of Fourtune nutjob who was "just looking to shoot someone".

I never thought about this before. A Mass. jury will most likely be full of anti-gun liberals. My 870 home defense shotgun has the black synthetic stock and an 18 inch barrel. Nothing else. I use the Federal Tactical buckshot. It sends a tight pattern and plenty of power. It drove the plastic wad deep into a tree out behind my house last fall. The wad is still stuck in the tree.
 
A 12 gauge, particularly loaded with a slug or 00 buck, is hard enough to control anyway. For that reason alone, I'd leave the wood stock and fore end on it.
 
Shotgun is my weakest firearm but I have learned a few things in trying to gain some experience with it.

I tend to agree with those who counsel to keep it simple and close to stock. While a tricked-out shotgun may look cool it is probably more appropriate for more offensive use or shooting games than the average homeowner would need for self-defense. Dave McCracken, one of the SG gurus over at TheHighRoad.org has advised new shotgunners to buy a good, basic pump SG from one of the Big 3 and use the extra money on a case or three of ammo and maybe some instruction.

I am personally not a fan of vertical forend grips (can't get used to them) or a pistol grip on a SG without a full stock also being present. I tried to fire my pistol-gripped 870 from the hip using just the grip. For about five minutes I was afraid that my thumb was going to come off. Then for the next thirty minutes I was afraid that it wouldn't. You take all the recoil in the web of your thumb and it ain't as easy as it looks on TV or the movies.

A good basic pump shotgun, maybe some hi-visibility sights, a recoil pad if you like, and a lot of ammo for practise will probably be enough for 95% or so of what you would need for self-defense.
 
Just to clarify, the surefire forend I have is not vertical. It's basically a direct horizontal replacement with a built in flashlight and pressure switch. You'll probably find the jury a whole lot less forgiving of shooting an unidentified harmless individual in the dark (daughter, friend, etc... it's happened) than they are of your big bad "tricked out" flashlight.

Now a serrated bayonet might be a different story...

The picture you posted is exactly what I have (yes, it does include the 7 shot extension) In Lewis Awerbuck's book on shotgun for Home Defense, he states the extension is key not necessarily to have all those rounds loaded up front, but to have room to load a slug or other heavy round as your next shot or two (pushing back the rest of your rounds) if that's what ends up being needed in a nightmare home invasion situation.

Besides that (straight from a shotgun master's written word), I'll never understand the logic behind picking a defense gun that holds X rounds over the same gun that holds more than X rounds. It's not like it goes longer than the barrel or sticks out the bottom like a saiga. There was a home invasion last year where the story was 4 people showed up (I think I saw Darius's name in the paper as their lawyer). Air support isn't coming.
 
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Here's a question about holding the shotgun. In this article (written for people working for the DOE Atmospheric Radiation Measurement program , North Slope of Alaska), they recommend holding the thumb along the right side of the stock, not over the stock. (item #2 below). Have people here found this to be good advice?


Defensive Shotgun - Remington 870 Operator's Guide

U.S. Department of Energy
Safeguards and Security
Central Training Academy

http://www.arm.gov/sites/nsa/870.stm

MARKSMANSHIP FUNDAMENTALS

1. Aiming

During the aiming process, you are concerned with correctly pointing the shotgun so the slug will hit the target in the desired spot.
1. Sight Alignment

You achieve correct sight alignment when the opt of the front sight post is exactly in the center of the rear sight aperature. If an imaginary horizontal line is drawn through the center of the rear sight aperature, the top of the front sight post will appear to touch that line. If an imaginary vertical line is drawn through the center of the rear sight aperature, the line will appear to bisect the front sight post. To obtain perfect sight alignment, focus on the front sight post. The rear sight post will appear fuzzy.
2. Sight Picture

You obtain correct sight picture when the sights are correctly aligned and the front sight is placed in the center of the aiming area. This center is commonly called "center hold" or "center of mass".
3. Flash Sight Picture

In a close-range encounter, you get flash sight picture by quickly verifying that the front sight is on the target's center of mass.

2. Holding

Several factors affect your ability to hold the shotgun steady while firing. These factors are the same for all firing positions.
1. Grip of the weak hand

The weak hand and elbow should be under the shotgun as much as possible. The strong hand grasps the pistol grip so that the grip rests in the "V" formed by the thumb and the trigger finger.
2. Grip of the strong hand

The strong thumb is correctly placed when it lies along the stock, NOT if it is wrapped around the wrist of the stock. If the thumb is wrapped around the wrist, during recoil you may hit your nose with the thumb, especially in the lower positions. The trigger finger is placed alongside the receiver and does not touch the trigger until the sights are on the target. The last three fingers around the pistol grip are quite sufficient to hold the shotgun exerting a firm rearward pull to keep the buttstock in the "pocket" of the strong shoulder.
3. Buttstock in the pocket of the shoulder

Correct placement of the buttstock in the shoulder pocket lessens the effect of recoil and helps steady the weapon allowing faster follow-up shots. Here's how to find your shoulder pocket: raise the strong elbow above the shoulder, place the fingers of your other hand under your raised armpit, and feel for the pocket with the thumb.
4. Strong side elbow

Mounting the elbow when firing helps keep the buttstock in the "pocket" of the shoulder. Always mount the elbow when you mount the shotgun. If the elbow isn't kept high, the pocket disappears and the shotgun can slide out onto the shoulder or biceps.
5. Stockweld

By consistently placing your cheek against the stock in the same place each time, you maintain a consistent relationship between the sights and your eyes. This consistency leads to increased accuracy. When a shooter's cheek is placed firmly against the stock, the shotgun and the shooter recoil together. This reduces the amount of time neede to recover between shots and aim again.
6. Lean into the shotgun

The action of bending your forward knee and leaning into the shotgun helps you make faster follow-up shots. Keep your rear leg straight, allowing it to act as a shock absorber.

3. Squeezing (pressing)

This is the act of manipulating the trigger, causing the shotgun to fire. This can and should be done without disturbing the alignment of the shotgun to the target. During the firing process, increase pressure straight to the rear on the trigger while maintaining sight alignment and sight picture. When you compress the time required to squeeze the trigger, this is called a "compressed surprise break."
4. Follow through

Following through means continuing to apply the fundamentals of marksmanship after firing a shot. This helps ensure good shot placement and allows quicker follow-up shots if necessary.
 
hminsky said:
Here's a question about holding the shotgun. In this article (written for people working for the DOE Atmospheric Radiation Measurement program , North Slope of Alaska), they recommend holding the thumb along the right side of the stock, not over the stock. (item #2 below). Have people here found this to be good advice?

I tried shooting this way after reading Jim Crews' shotgun manual. It seemed to help my groups slightly; it certainly hasn't hurt them. I can't say that I had a problem with my thumb hitting my face even when I shot with my thumb over the stock so I may have just solved a non-existent problem.
 
OOOHHH!! Good thread. Lets hear about all things defensive shotgun (except loads, lest a fight break out!!).

How about barrel lengths? Stock SG's seem a little long for moving around the house.

Matt
 
they recommend holding the thumb along the right side of the stock, not over the stock. (item #2 below). Have people here found this to be good advice
That's what I do. It reduces the chance of punching yourself in the nose with your own thumb.
 
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