American Rifleman - July 2011 - 94

TECHNICAL

I HAVE THIS OLD GUN

...

Remington Model 870
3" Magnum Wingmaster
GUN: REMINGTON MODEL 870
3" MAGNUM WINGMASTER
SERIAL NO.: V127XXXM
GAUGE: 12, 3"
CONDITION: 90% (NRA EXCELLENT MODERN FIREARM STANDARD)
MANUFACTURED: 1978
VALUE: $495

S

ince its introduction in January
1950, the Remington 870 Wingmaster has become the most
popular and ubiquitous shotgun in
the world. To date, more than 10 million Model 870 pump-actions have
been made in a multitude of styles,
ranging from hunting and competition models to law enforcement and
military variations.
With a colorful name that left no
doubt as to its original intended
purpose, the Wingmaster, from its
inception, embodied classic 1950s
styling. It had a graceful, sweptback trigger guard, a fleur-de-lis
pattern checkered glossy walnut
stock on deluxe models, a fingergrooved fore-end, a polished bolt
and a richly blued, bottom-loading
receiver machined from a solid
block of steel.
But it was the mechanics of
the gun that set it apart from the
competition. Easily detachable
(and interchangeable) barrels,
a takedown action and "twin
action bars"-thin steel rails that
extended into the receiver from
both sides of the sliding foreend-gave the 870 a fast-shooting,
ball-bearing smoothness in operation. Its five-shot tubular magazine
came with a three-shot plug.
Initially offered with fixed
chokes and chambered for 12-ga.,
2¾" shells, the sleek Wingmaster
was priced at $69.95 for the AP

84 J

ULY

2011

WWW.AMERICANRIFLEMAN.ORG

Standard Grade, compared to its
nearest competitor, the field-grade
Winchester Model 12, which cost
$98.15. Needless to say, the 870
Wingmaster was an instant hit, and
Remington ended up introducing
no fewer than 15 different versions-in 12, 20, and 16 gauges-
the first year. Models included
Special, Deluxe, and Deluxe
Special Grades, in addition to a
variety of trap and skeet guns, plus
a 20"-barreled riot gun.
A 3" magnum, 12-ga. chambering was added in 1955, and in
1959 Remington introduced an
RSS Rifled Slug Special. The 20-ga.
Magnum came out in 1960, and in
1969 scaled-down 28-ga. and .410
versions debuted. Screw-in "Rem
Chokes" were added in 1986.
The 12-ga. Remington 870
Magnum Wingmaster shown here
is chambered for 3" shells and was
made in 1978. Like all earlier guns,
it features milled, not stamped,
parts. The gun sports a factory
recoil pad, and the bore of the
ventilated-rib, full-choke 30" barrel
is pristine. The fancy walnut stock
shows a few minor nicks from
field use, however, and there is the
requisite slide wear. Nonetheless,
at 90 percent condition, this gun
is valued at $495 and promises
many more tag-filling seasons in
marshes and fields.
-RICK HACKER
Photos by author


http://WWW.AMERICANRIFLEMAN.ORG

American Rifleman - July 2011

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of American Rifleman - July 2011

American Rifleman - July 2011 - 1
American Rifleman - July 2011 - 2
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