New to the 870 // Ammo & Choke

General discussion about Remington 870 shotgun.
JeffGaines
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New to the 870 // Ammo & Choke

Post by JeffGaines » Wed Jun 17, 2020 1:53 am

Hi All,

I recently purchased a 870 Express Super Mag from a local pawn shop for home defense. I am a total newbie when it comes to shotguns so you all will have to forgive my ignorance. I am trying to find out a little bit more about two things.

First, what is the best ammo I can stock pile for home defense and for duck hunting using the current configuration?

Second, the barrel has no choke and isn't threaded for one. So I want to be sure I'm purchasing the correct slugs for the set up I currently have. I'll attach pics of the barrel for reference.

The barrel length is exactly 18".

The gentlemen I purchased the gun from said I can run about anything through the gun, but before I do, I want to check to see if this statement is true.

Thanks in advance!

JG

PS - I was given some Federalist Game Load by a buddy - 12Guage, 2.75", 1oz Shot, 8 Shot // 3-1/4 Dram EQ, MUZ VEL 1290 FPS, H121 8
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Romulus
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Re: New to the 870 // Ammo & Choke

Post by Romulus » Wed Jun 17, 2020 5:27 am

As that barrel appears to have sawn down and the crown hand squared by file, it is almost certainly cylinder bore, unless it was a full choke 21" turkey gun, in which case some residual choke might be there, but minimal. You should be able to shoot anything from slugs to buckshot to bird and target loads. For home defense, it depends on the typical engagement distances inside your dwelling and how far your neighbors are. Apartment, I'd go #4 buck or even BB birdshot. Big house on a big suburban lot, then 00 buck and even slugs. Just don't miss.
Now, since I think that barrel was cut and crudely re-crowned, make sure you pattern your gun. If the patterns suck, take it to a reputable smith and have him square and recrown properly. Repattern again and you should be good to go.
Rom

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Scorpion8
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Re: New to the 870 // Ammo & Choke

Post by Scorpion8 » Wed Jun 17, 2020 3:04 pm

An 18" barrel is NOT optimal for duck hunting, especially if it's smoothbore and cylinder choked. I assume the barrel isn't rifled? If it's is not, make sure you use rifled slugs since the barrel has no rifling of it's own. And then find yourself a good, used 28" ventilated rib RemChoked barrel for duck hunting.
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JeffGaines
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Re: New to the 870 // Ammo & Choke

Post by JeffGaines » Wed Jun 17, 2020 4:52 pm

@Romulus
Thanks for the reply, appreciate it.

@Scorpion8
That is correct, it isn't rifled. All smooth.

Any recommendations on Rifle Slugs just for the home defense front? And I'll look into the barrel.

Thank much!

JG

Romulus
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Re: New to the 870 // Ammo & Choke

Post by Romulus » Wed Jun 17, 2020 5:17 pm

Foster-style slugs from any maker, Winchester, Remington, Sellier&Bellot, Fiocchi, you name it. If the box simply says "slug" or "rifled slug" you're good to go. Just make sure it's correct gauge for your shotty. If it says "sabot" or "sabot slug" anywhere, that's for rifled barrels, not smooth bore.

Rom

Romulus
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Re: New to the 870 // Ammo & Choke

Post by Romulus » Wed Jun 17, 2020 5:22 pm

ETA:. I missed where you said in your original post that the barrel is exactly 18". Forget what I said about proper recrowning, that procedure might bring it below 18" and make the barrel illegal. Shoot as is. For home defense purposes at home defense distances it will be fine as is.

Rom

JeffGaines
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Re: New to the 870 // Ammo & Choke

Post by JeffGaines » Wed Jun 17, 2020 5:31 pm

I remeasured the barrel this AM (after watching some youtube vids) and it comes out right at 18 3/4, so there is a little room to spare.

JeffGaines
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Re: New to the 870 // Ammo & Choke

Post by JeffGaines » Wed Jun 17, 2020 5:35 pm

Sorry, one last question. The ammo I posted in the original post, safe to shoot or shelf it?

Romulus
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Re: New to the 870 // Ammo & Choke

Post by Romulus » Wed Jun 17, 2020 6:16 pm

Not knowing the condition of the shotgun I can't really say. But the ammo described by you can be shot np through a sound 12 ga 870 super Magnum.

JeffGaines
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Re: New to the 870 // Ammo & Choke

Post by JeffGaines » Wed Jun 17, 2020 7:40 pm

Thank you guys, I really appreciate your help.

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