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Capt. James H. Callahan

Remington 11-87. Experience, opinions?

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I've been getting the itch for a home defense shotgun my recoil sensitive wife can handle well. I'd like a Benelli or Beretta, but sure don't like the price. A local gun shop can order an 11-87 flat black synthetic youth model with a 21" VR that sounds like it might be just the ticket. From what I've read the 11-87 is more or less a re-named 1100 which I know. I prefer a 12 ga pump, but looking at a 20 that won't kick too badly.

JHC

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The 11-87 is suppossed to have a more “tolerant” gas sytem than the old 1100

that said i never had any issue with the older 1100

our HD shotgun is an 1100 youth in 20 g with an

extended tube. If your better half is recoil sensitive you might consider that setup

 as she is recoil sensitive don’t even think Benelli and ither  RECOIL operated shotguns!! 

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I use a 11-87 for trap & skeet. Love it, and less felt recoil than the 1100 I had.

OLG

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I have an 11-87 in 12 gauge. Virtual of course. A sweet gun to shoot. 

My Virtual gun has a 26 in barrel with choke  tubes. Would make a great

trap or even skeet gun, if I could it hit the dang bird. 

Only down thing I can think of is that if the sound pick up microphones at the trap 

range are too sensitive, it throws a second bird. But, can't blame the gun for that. 

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On pitfall of buying a 20 ga is there are few accessories for it and short barrels are expensive compared to the same gun in 12ga.

12 ga loads the same weight of shot as a 20 ga will have less recoil in 12 ga due to the slightly heavier gun.

 

You can buy reduced recoil buckshot loads for the 12 for defense and for practice just use  light 12 ga load of birdshot.

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2 hours ago, Sedalia Dave said:

On pitfall of buying a 20 ga is there are few accessories for it and short barrels are expensive compared to the same gun in 12ga.

12 ga loads the same weight of shot as a 20 ga will have less recoil in 12 ga due to the slightly heavier gun.

 

You can buy reduced recoil buckshot loads for the 12 for defense and for practice just use  light 12 ga load of birdshot.

The one I'm looking at is a 21" VR. Not worried about accessories. I know in most regular guns a 20 kicks at bad or worse than a 12. I've shot (owned one a while) 1100's, so I'm hoping a gas operated 20 will be pretty tame.

Thanks,

JHC

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The reduced recoil  12g buckshot loads will not function reliably in any of my Remingtons

as a matter of fact on the remington loads the box has a warning that it will not function reliably in gas operated auto loaders

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For home defense you don't need buckshot.  Number 7&1/2 will do just fine close up, and looses steam fast enough that you are less dangerous to  the neighbors.

 

Duffield

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Do NOT recommend birdshot for HD

As former LE I can rell you I’ve seen it

used and it isn’t the answer

 

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Since you mentioned Benelli anyway...

 

The Benelli M2s I have used have a very soft recoil impulse. Don't know how it would compare to the 11-87, but I doubt the 11-87 is any softer. 00 buck is very recoil manageable from a Benelli. 

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1 hour ago, Dantankerous said:

Since you mentioned Benelli anyway...

 

The Benelli M2s I have used have a very soft recoil impulse. Don't know how it would compare to the 11-87, but I doubt the 11-87 is any softer. 00 buck is very recoil manageable from a Benelli. 

My 11-87 is much 'softer' in recoil than my M-2 Benelli.

The 'benny' has a quick fast/sharp cycle compared to the 11-87.

FWIW: My stock 11-87 feeds/cycles everything I put in it, include'n my lite SASS loads.

If your 11-87 ain't cycling 'rite'. Check the condition of the 'O' ring. ;)

OLG

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4 hours ago, Dutch Nichols, SASS #6461 said:

Do NOT recommend birdshot for HD

As former LE I can rell you I’ve seen it

used and it isn’t the answer

 

What range was involved?

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I saw a lot of 1100s and 11-87s back when I shot trap, skeet, and sporting clays.  As far as I could tell the 11-87 was sort of the cheaper version of the 1100.  If kept clean and fed quality shells the 1100s and 87s seemed to do okay for shooting at clay birds, but they were nothing in terms of reliability when compared to the Berettas and Benellis. 

 

When I was 16 or 17 I was actually lucky enough to go on a dove hunt sponsored by Academy, they wanted to film a short hunting video to help promote youth hunting.  Academy supplied all the gear, clothing, ammo and several brand new Remington 11-87s in both 12ga and 20ga.  It was a fun experience, but those 11-87s even after a good cleaning had all sorts of reliability issues.  

 

If you really want a semi-auto 20ga for home defense I personally would look at something other than a Remington 11-87.  I've been out of the loop on semi-auto shotguns for a few years, but when I shot 4H I saw a lot of kids with the youth model Beretta 390 and 391s in 20ga.  Those Berettas could eat the cheap shells all day long without a single hiccup.    

 

If you do already have a suitable 12ga pump you might let your wife try some of the low recoil shells popular for SASS.  The low recoil 12ga ammo actually has less felt recoil than a lot standard 20ga loads.  You could simply let her practice with the low recoil stuff and keep it loaded with the real HD stuff on the slim chance it might be needed.

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I wouldn't sneeze at birdshot for a defense load.  I watched my dad set up a square of plywood, step back 7 steps and fired a trap load at the plywood.  The hole made in that piece of plywood was pretty impressive.

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On 4/8/2019 at 1:35 PM, The Original Lumpy Gritz said:

My 11-87 is much 'softer' in recoil than my M-2 Benelli.

The 'benny' has a quick fast/sharp cycle compared to the 11-87.

FWIW: My stock 11-87 feeds/cycles everything I put in it, include'n my lite SASS loads...

OLG

 

  Could the difference be contributed to your 11-87 having a wood stock and forearm? I'm guessing that extra weight helps absorb recoil. My Benelli M2 is outfitted with polymer stocks.

 

 I will say my Benelli will cycle any load I put through it. That includes mixing heavy recoiling buck and slugs with light cheap birdshot to no ill effects at all.

 

The Mossberg 930 SPX might also be a good chouce as well. I used one for a couple of classes and it also ran perfectly. Again, the semi automatic action absorbing most of the recoil, not the shooter's shoulder.

 

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1 minute ago, Dantankerous said:

 

  Could the difference be contributed to your 11-87 having a wood stock and forearm? I'm guessing that extra weight helps absorb recoil. My Benelli M2 is outfitted with polymer stocks.

 

 I will say my Benelli will cycle any load I put through it. That includes mixing heavy recoiling buck and slugs with light cheap birdshot to no ill effects at all.

 

The Mossberg 930 SPX might also be a good chouce as well. I used one for a couple of classes and it also ran perfectly. Again, the semi automatic action absorbing most of the recoil, not the shooter's shoulder.

 

IMHO--Stock material has nut'n to do with it. You are deal'n with 2 totally different systems.

OLG

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On 4/7/2019 at 9:16 AM, Dutch Nichols, SASS #6461 said:

The 11-87 is suppossed to have a more “tolerant” gas system than the old 1100

that said i never had any issue with the older 1100

our HD shotgun is an 1100 youth in 20 g with an

extended tube. If your better half is recoil sensitive you might consider that setup

 as she is recoil sensitive don’t even think Benelli and other  RECOIL operated shotguns!! 

The Browning A5 is recoil operated.  The Bennili SBE & Montefeltro & Franchi are Inertia operated.  To be recoil operated the barrel reciprocates like all pistols that aren't blow back or gas operated (Desert Eagle).  The inertia operating system requires that the gun move to the rear on firing.  If you place the butt of an inertia gun against an immovable object the action will not extract the spent hull.  There is a bolt and bolt carrier with a coil spring between the bolt and carrier.  The bolt has lugs that lock into the barrel extension (like an AR). The bolt has a pin that rides in a camming grove in the carrier.  As the gun moves rearward under recoil the bolt carrier wants not move due to Newton's 1st law.  The locked bolt moves rearward with the gun compressing the stout spring.  The bolt rotates as it compresses the spring, eventually unlocking the bolt from the barrel extension.  The gun's action from there on is the same as a gas or recoil operating systems.  The spring absorbs a lot of the recoil energy like recoil & gas guns significantly reduces the peak force transmitted to the shooters shoulder.

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My Benelli SBEII becomes a straight pull bolt action shotgun when loaded with 3/4 & 7/8 oz cowboy loads.  It is just too much to ask a auto-loading shotgun to digest the lightest 2 3/4" through 3 1/2" magnum loads. 

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1 hour ago, J.D. Daily said:

My Benelli SBEII becomes a straight pull bolt action shotgun when loaded with 3/4 & 7/8 oz cowboy loads.  It is just too much to ask a auto-loading shotgun to digest the lightest 2 3/4" through 3 1/2" magnum loads. 

I have no trouble cycling 'Featherlites' through my 11-87. 

My 'benny' won't cycle'em at all......

OLG

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2 hours ago, The Original Lumpy Gritz said:

I have no trouble cycling 'Featherlites' through my 11-87. 

My 'benny' won't cycle'em at all......

OLG

Does the benny chamber 3 1/2 magnums?  The Remington Versa Max with it's self regulating gas system probably will function with featherlites as well as 3 1/2" magnums.  Not that you'd want to fire more than a couple 3 1/2" shells.  3 1/2" magnums vs. 3" magnums is like shooting 460 S&W vs 45 Colt.

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I love the 1st firearm I ever owned. an 1100 that was a Christmas gift from the misses in the 1970's.  When my daughter's youngest got interested in Scholastic Clays he started with an 870.  His 2nd year I loaned the 1100 to him.  The softer recoiling 1100 suited his small stature better.  After he got  Franchi his mom appropriated the 1100.  She also has my 12 volt DC power pigeon throwing machine.  If I ever get the 1100 back I'll have to buy a new stock to fit me.

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Most shotguns chambered for 3 inch or 3 1/2 in magnum shells are not going to reliably cycle light target loads. If you want to shoot light loads you just about have to retune the gun. 

My 1100 with a 3 inch magnum barrel will not cycle light target loads reliably. However if I put a barrel chambered for 2 3/4 inch shells it works just fine.

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Picked up the new Remmy today, have not gotten to shoot it yet. Will report when I do.

JHC

Got this one in a compact 20 ga. with 21" barrel.

https://www.remington.com/shotguns/autoloading/model-11-87/model-11-87-sportsman-black-synthetic

Quote

 

 

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Just now, Capt. James H. Callahan said:

Picked up the new Remmy today, have not gotten to shoot it yet. Will report when I do.

JHC

Got this one in a compact 20 ga. with 21" barrel.

https://www.remington.com/shotguns/autoloading/model-11-87/model-11-87-sportsman-black-synthetic

 

 

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