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870 Malfunctioning?

Discussion in 'Shotguns' started by GigaBuist, Jul 6, 2005.

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  1. GigaBuist

    GigaBuist Member

    Sep 27, 2003
    Grand Rapids, MI
    I didn't think this was possible...

    Went to do some clay busting with some friends and a buddy asked me to look at his 870 because it wasn't working right. I'm not a shotgun guy, but I'm the "gun guy" so he figured I'd know what to do.

    Nope, didn't have a clue. Here's the situation:

    I haul out his 870 Express, got one myself, dry-fire, rack slide, dry-fire, rack slide, repeat over and over. Then, it happened. I dry-fired and the slide wouldn't rack! He wasn't fibbing, something is wrong. That little tab doo-hickey wasn't any help either. It was just LOCKED UP.

    I pulled the thing apart, looked for anything weird like a large ROCK in it or something, and put it back together. It happened over and over again while out busting clays over the weekend and we just gave up on the thing.

    Any ideas what in the world could be wrong? It's fairly new, maybe 3-4 years old. I didn't see anything wrong with it, but I'm no 870 expert, so if anybody that knows them well, <cough>Dave McCraken</cough>, could give me something to poke at I'd appreciate it.
  2. Fred Fuller

    Fred Fuller Moderator Emeritus

    Mar 26, 2004
    AL, NC
    1) Field strip, clean thoroughly, and properly lubricate (pay particular attention to the trigger plate assembly, and make sure it is reinstalled correctly)

    If that doesn't do it- 2) Will the action release if you push FORWARD on the forearm before trying to pull back? If it is clean and properly lubed, and still sticking in the locked position after the hammer falls and the forearm is pushed forward (What recoil does when a shell is fired), something is wrong. Could be:

    Action bars bent or otherwise damaged
    Firing pin retaining pin dragging on/blocking slide block
    Action bar lock damaged/deformed or mispositioned (most likely mechanical problem IMO- the action bar lock rides under the left action bar at the front and the trigger connector at the rear and keeps the action locked when the hammer is cocked, is supposed to release when the hammer falls or the action release is pressed)

    Or perhaps something else that I can't tell about without the gun in hand (and might not be able to diagnose even then). But I think it likely that a good cleaning and proper lubing will free up whatever is not functioning correctly- will keep my fingers crossed that's the case. If not you can swap out the trigger plate assy from a functioning gun of the same model and see if that cures the problem, that will help diagnose where the issue lies...

  3. Dave McCracken

    Dave McCracken Moderator In Memoriam

    Dec 20, 2002
    Glad to help even if you mispell my name....

    Do what Lee said. It's hard to diagnose a prob without the thing in front of me. If that doesn't fix the problem, let me know. I'll dig through Kuhnhausen and give you the checklist of things to do for a fix.
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