stronger lifter spring

General discussion about Remington 870 shotgun.
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stronger lifter spring

Post by rem870moron » Thu Sep 27, 2018 12:10 pm

I was contemplating installing a stronger lifter spring on the youngster's 870 for added reliability. my question is ,will this make the gun harder to pump?


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Re: stronger lifter spring

Post by Scorpion8 » Thu Sep 27, 2018 6:23 pm

Is there a problem with the reliability of their shotgun now? Not all upgrades "need" to be done, and some are more for peace of mind rather than true need. Is it truly a reliability issue or might they be short-cycling the pump?
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Re: stronger lifter spring

Post by efriedrich » Fri Sep 28, 2018 6:40 pm

I have either shot or been in the company of an 870 being fired for thousands (probably 10000) of rounds and have never seen a lifter failure.

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Re: stronger lifter spring

Post by Synchronizor » Sat Sep 29, 2018 2:05 am

The carrier dog follower spring isn't actually what lifts the carrier - that's done with a direct mechanical linkage through the carrier dog. The spring is responsible for holding the carrier dog against the slide assembly so that the two can engage each other, and then holding the carrier in the down or up positions once it moves. So, the stiffer spring can be of minor benefit in a gun that sees a lot of rough handling or harsh conditions on a regular basis, but it doesn't directly affect how well the carrier lifts shells. The stiffer spring can also provide a longer effective life in a heavily-used 870, but no matter what spring you're running it's still best to replace it periodically to maximize reliability.

To answer your question though, yes, a heavier carrier dog follower spring does make the action stiffer to cycle, since there's more friction between the carrier dog and the slide assembly. It's not a huge difference, but it is noticeable.

Also, with the heavy spring holding it down, the carrier takes a fair bit more force to depress when loading or unloading the gun's magazine (about an extra 50% if I recall correctly, I did actually take measurements at one point but that was years ago). If you're a cop or federal security agent who trains intensively with the 870 on a regular basis, it shouldn't trip you up. But if you're an average Joe who doesn't shoot very often and wants the best chance of being able to reload a HD or hunting gun in a hurry without fumbles, the stiffer spring may not be the best choice.

I tried the extra-heavy carrier dog follower spring for awhile, but ended up going back to the standard-weight for the above reasons. I have never had a feed problem that I could blame on the carrier dog follower spring, and my 870 has seen a ton of cycles. The spring I use now is actually the Marine Magnum version of the carrier dog follower spring, which is the same strength as the standard spring but with a nickel finish for a bit of extra corrosion resistance. Probably not enough of an improvement to be worth worrying about, but I had it lying around so I used it.

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