870 barrel clamps


June 9, 2005, 05:05 PM

Looking at the 870 HD in the link above, the extended-mag version has a barrel clamp included. Some high-end models such as the Wilson Border Patrol model don't seem to come with this accessory.

To me, it would seem to be a desirable, if not necessary, attachment on an extended mag shotgun. Is this the case or is it just a "nice to have" accessory?

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Black Majik
June 9, 2005, 05:08 PM
The ext. magazine clamp is necessary. If the ext. magazine gets bumped it has a good chance of being deformed without the clamp.

Get the clamp, its cheap and good insurance.

June 9, 2005, 05:36 PM

Fred Fuller
June 9, 2005, 06:43 PM
IMHO a clamp is necessary on an extension that is longer than the one-shot versions. The extension mounts on the very thin walled magazine tube and can exercise a great deal of leverage on it.

Other folks say no clamp is necessary since some manufacturers don't offer them with the purchase of an extension. It's one of those things you have to make up your own mind about. All my guns with two round extensions or greater have clamps without exception.

BTW, not shown in the pic you linked is the fact that the Rem factory clamp also serves as the attachment point for the front sling swivel. So does its Uncle Mike's equivalent, as well as several other different offerings.

It has been my experience that a properly chosen and installed clamp causes no problems with maintaining zero on a shotgun with sights. Again, YMMV.



Dave McCracken
June 9, 2005, 06:46 PM
Learned at an instructor's school a couple decades back that an extension WITH a clamp properly tightened down in effect stiffens the barrel. Slug group sizes diminish,oft remarkably.

Use a clamp.

June 9, 2005, 07:39 PM
I've seen several cases of extensions without clamps being knocked off the gun by a bump.

The most serious was a small-town police chief answering what later proved to be a false robbery alarm at a local bank.

When he arrived at the bank, he grabbed the 870 shotgun from the car's rack and stepped out.
As he stepped out, he bumped the extension on the car's door frame and the extension was knocked off.

It was blown off the gun with such force, the windshield of the car was broken.

I'll never forget the Chief's face as he told me about how he felt when he found himself facing possible multiple armed holdup men with nothing but a 6 shot revolver.

How strong and sturdy an extension is doesn't matter.
The extension could be a solid steel bar.

It's the GUN's magazine tube that's the weak point.
The tube is fairly thin metal, which is further weakened by the deep, square threads.
Give the extension a bump, and it can either be bent out of line, or knocked completely off the gun.

Invariably, it isn't the extension that gets damaged, it's the gun's magazine tube.
In the case of the Remington, this means the gun has to be returned to the factory for an expensive magazine tube replacement.

In all cases, it's means your shotgun is out of service, then and there.

About the best barrel clamp ever made is the Remington factory.
Uncle Mike's make an excellent copy, which comes complete with sling swivels.
They make versions to fit several brands of guns.

Extensions knocked off guns is not as rare or unusual an occurrence as you might think.

Bottom line: There are NO good reasons not to use an extension, and several good reasons to use one.

June 9, 2005, 07:41 PM
I will second that the extension tightens slug groups noticably, at 100 yards at least. With remington reduced recoil slugs my groups are much tighter with the clamp and extension on.

June 9, 2005, 08:17 PM
Yikes - I guess I had it completely backwards. Sorry to confuse the issue.


June 9, 2005, 10:41 PM
OK, I will stir the pot to a boil:
IMHO the Wilson deletion of the clamp is rationalized like their glued on front sight (that WILL, under sustained fire, take off) , use of the Express model for their high end priced gun ect; more money for Wilson's name on a minimal product!
Scattergun Tech , could sure turn out nice guns and their Trac Lok sights (if the front is soldered on) are top notch. But like Gary Fisher bikes after being bought out by the Trek conglomerate it is all about the name on a ho hum product!
The front clamp has to be carefully placed and torqued to keep from affecting POI, but once set they sure as heck secure everything! Without one you will be tightening constantanly in a high round count training scenario, even with LOCtite (which makes field stripping BAD) the support to the tube and tieing the front of barrel to the thin tube is not addressed. I like a clamp on ONE SHOT extensions, and consider a Clark milled clamp on one of these to be the absolute bomb! :neener:

June 10, 2005, 03:50 AM
I have yet to see a compelling reason to NOT have a clamp on the gun.

June 10, 2005, 04:03 AM
Clark milled clamp
Gordon, would you kindly provide a link?

June 10, 2005, 11:32 AM
Just remember to loosen the clamp before trying to remove the extended magazine, or you can really tear up your hand. (Probably the dumbest thing I've done in a while, but as my dad said "if that's the dumbest thing you ever do with a gun you're doing just fine")

June 10, 2005, 03:08 PM
The solid, milled steel Clark clamp can be bought from Brownell's.

Hold on to your wallet, sticker shot is extreme.

June 11, 2005, 03:22 AM
The sight base (pedistal) on my Scattergun Tech./Wilson shotgun is silver soldered on like it should be. That's how their barrels come. Then they glue the post into the SILVER SOLDERED base and PIN IT. It can't go anywhere. Probably as stong a sight as there is. They make glue these days that is used to put steel buildings together, and the glued part is stronger than the steel! In fairness, I guess I should say that the sights used to be glued on, and 1 in 20 came loose. Not any more :D

One of the main purposes of the barrel clamp is to prevent the ext. tube from unscrewing. If you'll notice, the sling clamp supports the tube on the Scattergun Tech/Wilson extension, and the problem of the ext. unscrewing was solved by using a large thin collapsible washer that you simply slip over the spring.

Well, Pilgrims, I hope that cleared a couple things up. :neener:

June 11, 2005, 03:29 AM
Thanks for the link, Dfaris...nice looking piece, but would it work on a Remington factory extension? I believe you need the clamp screw to nestle in that there circumferential groove...

June 11, 2005, 11:32 AM
The only drawback I can see to having a magazine extention clamp is that it can complicate removing the barrel (for cleaning, etc.).

June 11, 2005, 01:17 PM
The Clark clamp WILL NOT work on the factory Rem ext. , only the (good) supplied clamp works properly! It WILL work on the little stubby +1 extension(or a Choate or Scattergun tech ect) and become super rigid then.
I have NOT seen the new Wilson pinned on sights, looks like they fixed that problem. The belleview washer is not a good answer though, IMHO. Also using the Express platform for a high end gun still seems like a huge profit margin for Wilson. I have not seen any signs of hand fitting or trigger work so why couldn't Joe Blow put $250 worth of add ons on a $300 Express? Unless the Wilson name is worth $300! :neener:

June 11, 2005, 05:54 PM
Well, I guess us old retired guys have to make sure we don't have too much money left over when we go. Besides, I can't put 5 rds. in a target in 2.8 seconds easily with my other 870's (hunting type). I can with the Wilson (consistently).

Just to make sure I don't have much money left over, I sent Wilson my Wingmaster to have them reconfigure it to the Border Patrol Model. They've shipped it, and now I'll have two expensive Combat Shotguns. I figure one for home, and one for travel. Now, where can I find a good 1187 that's reliable with LE low recoil ammo? Course I heard a rumor that Federal and Hornady both have standard Tactical ammo for semi-autos :D

June 12, 2005, 02:17 AM
I sent Wilson my Wingmaster to have them reconfigure it to the Border Patrol Model."
Now THAT will prolly be a true custom grade gun ! :)

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