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Need replacement front sight for an 870 slug barrel

Discussion in 'Shotguns' started by Rob62, Jun 9, 2005.

  1. Rob62

    Rob62 Well-Known Member

    I'd like to replace the standard front sight on my stock 20" smooth bore Remington 870 slug barrel. The iron sights that are on it are factory OEM.

    What I'm looking for is either a white bead or one of the "hi viz" sights that has a bright plastic insert that helps gather light.

    I've got a Brownell's catalog but after much reading and looking I'm somewheat confused over what would be the right replacement for the stock sight.

    Anyone here know which part number would work?

    On a related note - anyone know what one piece Weaver base would work as a scope base mounted to the top of the receiver of the 870? I know it would require drilling and tapping for the attachment screws? I just can't find the part number for that. All I keep finding is the side "bolt on" type scope mounts and I know I DO NOT want to use one of those.

  2. Fred Fuller

    Fred Fuller Moderator Emeritus

  3. Gordon

    Gordon Well-Known Member

    Lee: I probably rough handle my guns, but that williams sight A: first lost the fiber optic, which I replace with a Williams kit, B: being thrown around in a soft case in a Jeep, bent the whole shooting match and ruined the front sight completely. The Williams aluminum rear peeps DID NOT hold up on my 3 gun 1100s. I put them on in the mid-late 80s and was constantly haveing the tiny gib lock screws losen and eventually the peep insert take off. Crushed a few soft alum peep inserts too!
    I would silver solder a steel front sight blade from a Remington 600 or 660 commonly known as the "shark fin" on his 870 with OEM rear rifle sight. The height is correct and it gives you a nice square post sight picture that will not shift impact with diferrent angles of light like a bead does with slugs. :cool:
  4. Rob62

    Rob62 Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the input. I'm really only interested in changing out the front sight to something more visible than the factory one.

    I'm actually hoping to find some kind of a high visibility non plastic dot sight. Thinking that maybe Meprolight might sell their front night sight for the 870 - now that may be exactly what I need and I just don't know it yet :eek:

    I also may call Williams Gun Co. up and see if I can just order the front only. The price would probably be not much morethan if I get it from Brownells.

    The only thing for sure that I know is the stock isn't working to well for me. Its just to hard to pick up fast.

  5. Bix

    Bix Well-Known Member

    I found the stock sights very slow, myself, and replaced them with a set of "standard dot" express sights from XS:


    The "golf ball" front sight and shallow rear notch make a huge difference in how quickly I can grab a sight picture. If you are just swapping out the front, you might find the stock rear is too narrow for the "dot" style front sight. XS also offer a "stripe" front post that might work....
  6. Fred Fuller

    Fred Fuller Moderator Emeritus

    The Ashley Express sights Bix mentioned would be my next recommendation also, given the additional info you posted. They can be had plain or with tritium, and with the shallow vee notch rear sight it is VERY fast when you get accustomed to it (takes all of a few minutes to get used to). My wife loves her 870 with a set of 24/7 Big Dot express sights installed.

  7. Rob62

    Rob62 Well-Known Member

    I'm really looking hard at the Ashley Express sight, now I guess XS sights - 'cause Ashley Outdoors is no more. The idea of a low "V" notch rear and big bold dot in the front is exactly what I think will work the best for my needs and eyesight.

    After checking several sources I'm surprised that this sight combo seems to be well over $100. Being the cheap person that I am, I'm not too keen on spending that kind of $$ on a set of sights.

    I've checked my Brownells catalog for the best deal, and while they list these sights for all kinds of handguns non are listed for the 870.

    Anyone have a cheap source for these sights? A web search didn't get any decent results.

    Other options I'm still playing around with in my head.

    Get a set of Meprolight night sights - about $68 @ Brownells.

    Get only a replacement front sight blade made by Marbles that has a 3/32" white dot - about $8 at Brownells. This would seem to be the least expensive option. The entire sight blade is made of metal with th ewhite dot being some type of polymer. This sight also should be sturdy enough not to break in case of an unexpected bump.

    I think this is almost a moot point as I just called Brownells and tried to ordered one of these Marbles white dot front sights as well as a Scattergun Tech. jumbo head safety and a few other parts.

    Unfortunately they were out of the white dot front so I got the same size gold dot. I'll post the results to see if this sight gets me where I want to be.

    I'd still be interested in hearing of a cheap source for the Ashley Express (XS) sight.

  8. Fred Fuller

    Fred Fuller Moderator Emeritus


    If you get a front sight blade that works, you can open the U notch in the rear sight to a shallow V notch with a file, if you are careful. I've done it a couple of times. Remington used to use a wider rear sight than the present issue ones, those worked better for this.

  9. Bix

    Bix Well-Known Member

    I was thinking the same thing. Just buy the XS front and widen the rear out yourself. If you go with the non-tritium Big (or Standard) Dot front, you should be able to do the project for a very resonable cost.

    XS sells the sights separately (although, their online store is currently down). I'd give them a ring and see what the front will run you.
  10. Rob62

    Rob62 Well-Known Member

    Follow up.

    The Marble's gold dot front sight arrived and I put it on the gun. I've since been to the range and it did make quite a difference. While still not as "bright" as I'd like it to be, I can see the gold dot a lot better than the factory black one.

    At 25 yds I was able to keep 5 out of 5 slugs in a 6" paper plate while shooting offhand. That's good enough for my purposes right now. I want to see how this gun / sight combo do at longer ranges though - 50 to 75 yards max.

    I haven't done anything with the factory rear sight yet and plan on shooting the gun a lot more before I make any more changes.

    Thanks for all the comments and sugestions.


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