The Remington 870 is not only one of the most popular shotguns in the market today, it is also one of the most customizable. You can modify or upgrade most parts of the 870, and the barrel is no exception.
Upgrading your barrel is one of the best ways to improve the performance of your 870 shotgun.
In this article, we’ll dive into what makes the Remington 870 a good shotgun, and the reasons to upgrade its barrel. We’ll also cover the qualities to look for in a new shotgun barrel, and the top 3 Best Remington 870 Barrels for 2022.
|Carlson's Remington 870 Barrel|| ||$181 Shop NowClick to read my review|
|Mossberg Remington 870 Security Barrel|| ||$183 Shop NowClick to read my review|
|Remington Model 870 Replacement Barrel|| ||$188 Shop NowClick to read my review|
Quick Remington 870 History
The Remington 870 is one of the most well-known shotgun designs of all time. It has been the best-selling pump-action shotgun in the US since its debut. The Mossberg 500 is the only other shotgun that comes close in terms of sales, but the 870 is still the most customizable alternative.
The Remington 870 is the fourth generation in the Remington pump-action shotgun line. The Model 10, which was considered quite weak at the time of its release, was eventually transformed into the more robust Model 29. Following that, John Moses Browning built the Remington Model 17 and 31 shotguns, both of which were good guns but couldn’t compete with the Winchester Model 12, which dominated the pump-action shotgun market at the time.
In 1950, Remington released a new shotgun that they intended to be durable and affordable at the same time. The idea was that the shotgun could be affordable to the general public while being made to endure a lifetime to reach future generations. The Remington 870 was born.
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Why Go with the Remington 870 Shotgun?
Aren’t convinced why you should get this shotgun? Below are the reasons why.
First and foremost, the Remington 870 is the best-selling shotgun in American history. Over two million 870 shotguns were sold in twenty-five years. The number of shotguns sold has now surpassed ten million, which speaks something about the design’s quality.
Another thing, the Remington 870 has a side ejecting receiver, a tubular loaded magazine that runs underneath the barrel. It is also a bottom loading firearm. Sometimes the 870 will ship with a plug, which reduces the total capacity to three rounds so the weapon can be legal to hunt within states or jurisdictions. For in some places, there are limits on how many rounds a hunting firearm can hold.
There are also numerous different models of the Remington 870 available, including the budget-minded Express model, the hunting/clay pigeon shooting oriented Wingmaster model, and the combat/home defense oriented Tactical models.
Finally, many people have referred to the 870 as an all-purpose weapon, the all-around American classic shotgun. It’s incredibly adaptable and reliable, and it’s been catering to hunters’ changing demands and needs for almost half a century. The 870 is surely a shotgun that endures over time and is still very versatile up to this day. Any new or old hunters can use this gun with anything whether for deer hunting or even home defense.
Why Should You Upgrade Your Remington 870 Barrel?
The 870 is already a well-made shotgun, and it needs to be made clear that the barrel that comes with your shotgun will work well from the factory. Nonetheless, it can still be improved. In fact, the number of aftermarket parts and accessories for the 870 rivals the AR-15, Colt M1911A1, Beretta 92, Glock pistols, and the Ruger 10/22.
Below are the reasons why you should upgrade your shotgun’s barrel:
- To improve your weapon’s capabilities as a self-defense weapon: For example, standard 870 barrels come with a bead on the front sight. This bead works well enough, but by adding a barrel that comes with rifle sights, it will become much easier for you to line up your sights on target. Adding rifle sights to your barrel also makes it easier for many people to shoot their shotguns and improve accuracy at distances of twenty yards or even greater. Some barrels for the 870 have a modified design on the interior to help with accuracy.
- Upgrade your barrel if you want to get a barrel that is more rust and corrosion-resistant: A blued barrel, for instance, may look nice, but it also not be rust or corrosion-resistant against moisture at all. A parkerized, nitride, or stainless steel barrel, on the other hand, will be.
- Replace the barrel if you want to change the barrel length: For example, the 870 shotgun you purchased may have a long 24 or 28-inch barrel for hunting and clay pigeon shooting purposes. If you want to have a shotgun for home defense, a barrel of that length will simply be too long because it is not very maneuverable in tight conditions. But rather than buy an entirely new shotgun with a shorter barrel, you can instead just buy a shorter barrel of 18.5 inches or so for far less money, and then install it on your shotgun.
- Some barrels also come with fixed chokes which will impact the spread and accuracy of your shotgun: Some people may prefer different chokes for different purposes and would therefore prefer a barrel where the choke can be removed and swapped out if the user so desires.
All in all, there are several reasons why you may want to swap out the barrels on your 870. Next, we’ll talk about the top features you need to look for if you do indeed decide a barrel upgrade is in your future.
Buyer’s Guide For Choosing The Best Remington 870 Barrel
What to look for in a new barrel for your Remington 870? Below are the factors to consider:
- Choke: The term ‘choke’ is a word that you will hear thrown around a lot in discussions of shotgun barrels and in shotguns in general. It simply refers to a tapered construction located at the end of your barrel, with its purpose being to spread your shot to help gain better accuracy. Sometimes, the choke can be replaceable, and other times it will be fixed. A fixed choke means that it has been screwed into the barrel and it cannot be replaced, so if you want to get a new choke, you need to get an entirely new barrel along with it.
- Length: For home defense, you’ll want to go with a shorter 18.5 inch or 20-inch barrel length for your shotgun. Any longer than that will make the shotgun considerably less easy to maneuver in tight conditions, such as in home defense. A longer barrel, however, will be much preferable to use for hunting or clay pigeon shooting for fun.
- Sights: Most shotguns come with a simple bead located at the end of the barrel. This certainly works, but for home defense or self-defense, or tactical purposes, you may want to look at barrels that come with rifle sights instead. While it may seem odd for your shotgun barrel to have rifle sights, the truth is that rifle sights make it easier for you to line up on target than a bead, and they can also improve accuracy out to distances of twenty to thirty yards or so.
- Finishing: Make sure that your barrel comes with very rust and corrosion-resistant finish such as parkerizing. Most Remington 870 shotguns come blued or parkerized from the factory; parkerizing admittedly looks more crude than traditional bluing, but it is far more rust and corrosion-resistant. In bad weather conditions, in the rain, or in humid tropical areas, parkerized finishes will always be preferable to bluing because they will simply hold up far better.
Best Remington 870 Barrels For 2022
Carlson’s Remington 870 Barrel with Ramped Front Sight
The Carlson’s Remington 870 barrel with a ramped front sight provides you with a lot of value for the money. The Carlson’s barrel is very easy to install on your Remington 870 shotgun as if it were a factory component.
The biggest benefit to the Carlson’s barrel is that it can improve the accuracy of your 870 considerably. It is something that many users of this barrel have reported on. It is also chrome lined on the inside, which not only helps to ensure reliable feeding from the round into the chamber but also helps to extend the service life of the barrel considerably as well. As an added bonus, this barrel comes with a Carlson cylinder bore choke tube as well. It also has a threaded barrel for the standard Remington choke and can fit 3” chambers.
The only con is that it will not work with any Remington 870 Tactical model. But it should be fully compatible with other Remington 870 shotguns. The choke of this barrel can also be replaced if you so desire. In addition, the Carlson’s is available with either an adjustable front and rear sight set up or a ramped blade front sight. It also ships with a lifetime warranty from the manufacturer as well.
If you want a Remington 870 that is durable, comes chrome-lined, and has a lifetime warranty from the manufacturer, the Carlson’s 870 replacement shotgun barrel is exactly what you’re looking for.
- Comes with a lifetime warranty from the manufacturer
- Very robust build
- Chrome lining helps to extend service life
- Cannot fit Remington 870 Tactical models
Mossberg Remington 870 12GA 18.5″ Security Barrel
Another outstanding barrel for the money is the Mossberg 12 Gauge Standoff Bead Sight Security Barrel. Mossberg created a high-quality barrel that fits your Remington 870 pump-action shotgun better. Though it’s possible that this one won’t work with 870 12 Gauge 3.5″ Magnum models, this barrel is still a great inexpensive alternative to Remington.
The Mossberg Remington 870 Barrel features a matte blued finish. It is easy to install and includes a cylinder bore choke tube that can fit 3″ chambers/shells. The barrel is of the same high quality as any other Mossberg barrel I’ve seen. It should outlast you if you keep it maintained.
This Mossberg Remington 870 18.5 inches breacher barrel also comes with bead sight to easy point at a moving target. Though there isn’t a lot to say on Mossberg’s website, this barrel really works. In fact, Mossberg has been at the forefront of introducing key design advances to the weapons market, and creating a barrel for the Remington 870 is a great move.
If you’re looking for options that are a non-factory barrel, consider this Mossberg 12 Gauge 18.5” Barrel. It is reasonably priced and of comparable quality to other Remington 870 barrels on the market.
- Great quality and finish
- Installing is a breeze
- Includes a cylinder bore choke tube and bead sight
- Will not work with 870 12 Gauge 3.5” Magnum models
Remington Model 870 Replacement Barrel
Though Remington previously stopped manufacturing, it is anticipated that they might soon be back in production. On our top three list, I’ll keep this Remington OEM replacement barrel. There’s nothing quite like these barrels, which are produced to the exact same specs, tolerances, and materials as the original Remington parts.
Built by Remington, this factory replacement barrel is made of steel and has a parkerized finish to match the rest of your parkerized 870 in terms of appearance. It’s also resistant to rust and corrosion, which means it can endure any harsh weather. The rifle sights are well-made and easy to adjust, and the barrel is easily interchangeable. The barrel is also easy to take out of the woods because it is only 18.5″ long.
The Remington 870 barrel comes with the Rem Choke Tactical Tube, designed primarily for tactical firearm and home defense.
Overall, the Remington Model 870 Replacement Barrels are the best; the only disadvantage is that they are quite difficult to find. If you cannot wait and need the replacement barrel right now, you can always rely on the first two replacement barrels that we’ve discussed earlier.
- Durable barrel with parkerized finish
- Easily interchangeable
- Rifled sights are simple to adjust
- Hard to find; mostly out of stock
And that concludes our list of the best barrels for the Remington 870 for 2022.
The 870 is one of the most customizable firearms in existence, and it’s arguably the most customizable shotgun. While the 870 is already a shotgun choice out of the box, you can improve it even further by upgrading the barrel. Our top pick for this is the Carlson’s Remington 870 Barrel.
Any of the barrels that we have covered here will help to improve the self-defense capabilities of your Remington 870. Or alternatively, you can follow our buyer’s guide to help you select a solid barrel for your 870.
You might also like to read:
- Best Remington 870 Upgrades and Accessories
- 8 Best Home Defense Shotguns in 2021
- Best Mossberg 500 Heat Shields
Featured image by Matt E.