14'' 870 Owner's [Archive] - Glock Talk


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12-29-2010, 19:09
A couple question's for all of the 14'' 870 owner's, I have been seriously thinking about going the SBS route. First question, is it worth the hassle and expense? Second, are there any real advantages or disadvantages from shaving 4''? It seems like the shorter barrel, lighter weight would be positive's. As far as negative's maybe increased muzzle flash, noise, recoil? I am not looking into this for the coolness factor, my 18'' with factory plus two tube just seems fairly long and heavy for an H.D. scenario. Let me know what you think.

12-29-2010, 20:07
The 14" barrel makes it easier for me to get my shotgun out of my patrol car. The gun is a bit easier to search a home with, but I really prefer a handgun for that anyway. In short, I do not really think it is worth the trouble or expense.

12-29-2010, 20:28
I am thinking about getting a new barrel and going 14" for my 590A1 for a SBS. No tactical reason just because I want to. :)

12-29-2010, 20:31
We have a couple of 14" 870's at work. They are really handy inside a building and maneuvering corners and doorways, and of course getting out of the rack and exiting the car with them. They also swing really fast when you go to point them, not really a good thing when you're used to a 28-30" bird gun.

That being said my work shotgun is a 18" 870. I also have a 20" Mossberg that I like because of the capacity.

If you really want one, the "hassle" is not usually that much trouble so I say go for it.

12-29-2010, 23:14
I've had mine since '98.
It's handier in & out of tight places, and rides nicely in a scabbard up under my Yamaha Rhino's roof. Quicker to haul out of that & maneuver inside the roll cage than an 18-incher.
It's the one that rides the desert & hills with me, the 18-inchers are reserved for other purposes.

I kinda like the dimensions. For me, it was worth the effort & money.

12-30-2010, 06:29
Thanks for the replies so far, as I expected the advantages to having that smaller, lighter package seem to outweigh the disadvantages. Are there any disadvantages?

12-30-2010, 09:00
Thanks for the replies so far, as I expected the advantages to having that smaller, lighter package seem to outweigh the disadvantages. Are there any disadvantages?

Cost or the tax stamp and the fact you will have some restrictions / rules on inter-state travel with it. Nothing directly related to function in my opinion. All the powder should be burned in the first 10" or so so you not loosing any velocity and it should have no measurable effect on the pattern. This is based on research I don't have one yet.

David Armstrong
12-30-2010, 10:17
I tried a 14" 870 for about a month, then gladly went back to my 18". Loss of capacity, didn't handle quite so smoothly, couldn't shoot quite as fast, all were negatives for me. But to give you an idea of just how personal that is, a training partner of mine tried a 14" and promptly gave up his 18" for it because he felt it handled so much better. My advice would be find one and try it before committing.

12-30-2010, 11:03
Any time you reduce weight on a shotgun you increase recoil to at least some degree.
A GOOD recoil pad mitigates that somewhat.
I did have a mercury recoil reducer in the stock for that reason for several years, but removed it a while back because it just made the gun too heavy.

Mine now wears Speedfed digital camo furniture, a bit lighter than the old wood was, but recoil isn't a problem for me.

Has a one-round mag extension, which leaves it with a total 6-shot fully loaded capacity, only one less than an 18-incher with two-round mag extension, and one more than the factory four-shot mag the basic 870 came with for so many years.

My 18-inchers have both been "Vanged", the shorty is due in the spring. Once ported and backbored, I expect recoil to be tamed a bit and patterning to be improved, as on the other two 870s.

In my case, I don't need to take it out of state so that's not a problem, and the federal process was worth the hassle.
Mine handles better for me than the longer guns, but it can be a matter of individual preference.

Patterning is affected by the barrel's choke more than the barrel's length, although length can be a factor in shorter barrels.
Mine was a conversion done by the original Scattergun Tech. They cut the barrel back, and installed what I recall was termed a Modified choke sleeve to constrict the shot charge a little better than the Cylinder Bore "choke" left by the lopping.
The work was beautifully done, but this gun patterns much more widely than the two 18-inchers, even before they were Vanged.

If you go with a 14-incher, better to buy a factory 14-inch barrel from Remington that comes with a choke than to go the cutback route, in my opinion.
I didn't have that choice when I had my 870 rebuilt.


12-30-2010, 11:57
I run a 14" 590A1 rather than an 870, but I would happily do it again.
I have a shotgun that is 4" shorter at the barrel and with a Hogue ShortShot it is 2" shorter in the LOP, for a net loss of 6" but it has the exact same capacity as the 18.5" 6 shot model. With a good recoil pad and good form the recoil is not going to be that bad. I get a whole lot more maneuverability with the shotgun, and it is also much lighter even with a 6 round sidesaddle.
If you go with a purpose-built defensive/duty load like the Federal FC loads you have a round that was designed to reach max V in the shorter barrels, less flash, and lower recoil. All of that plus a tighter pattern to offset the cylinder bore.
If you go with the lengthened forcing cone and porting you may also cut down on the recoil from standard loads, but the flash will be up there still.
I've never done it, but I do know some people that have filled out the NFA forms for interstate travel with various periods for a whole year ahead of time if they expect to actually travel out of state.