While it’s been rumored for a while now, Remington has finally announced its magazine-fed variant of the company’s 870 pump-action shotgun. Shooting Illustrated got a sneak peak of the new Remington 870 DM shotgun at a writer’s event at Gunsite Academy earlier this year, and had a chance to run it through some of Gunsite’s shotgun drills.
Before we get into the performance of the Remington 870 DM shotgun, a few items are note-worthy. First, while the DM’s receiver looks like a standard 870 with a magazine well bolted on, it is a completely separate and new receiver—the two are not interchangeable. Second, don’t be fooled by the tubular-magazine-looking piece under the barrel. It’s a guide for the pump-action, nothing more. Obviously, some design elements were retained for simplicity of production. And, lastly, when assembling or disassembling the 870 (like, say, the first time you take it out of the box), there’s no need to put your hand over the tube to prevent the magazine spring from shooting out. Because there is no magazine spring (well, in the tube, that is).
Other than how it is fed, the Remington 870 DM behaves quite similarly to its tubular-magazine brethren. Fire a round, work the action smoothly to reload, lather, rinse, repeat as needed. We did not see a significant change in the handling of the 870 DM compared to a tube-fed 870 on the square range or in the shoothouse. Remember that the center of gravity (for lack of a better term) is going to be slightly different, as rather than the 870 Tactical’s 7-round tubular capacity, the 870 DM has 6 rounds protruding from the bottom of the receiver. There is a shift in how the shotgun’s weight is distributed, but it should not take much getting used to in order to function properly.
The biggest difference comes once the Remington 870 DM runs empty—rather than needing to grow a third arm to facilitate faster loading, one need simply drop the empty magazine to the deck and replenish with another loaded mag. Need to swap out slugs for buckshot? Drop the mag, eject the buckshot, then load a fresh magazine full of slugs. Easy-peasy. However, it may take some getting used to—you’re holding a pump-action Remington 870, after all; you’re certainly not going to be expecting to release a magazine when you’re done shooting.
Let’s discuss the magazine release. Remington has, in this author’s opinion, gotten it right. Rather than a magazine that needs to be rocked into (or out of) the magazine well, the 870 DM magazine inserts and is removed with a straight-pull action. Pull the release into the magazine well, strip the magazine from the receiver, and reverse the procedure to insert a fresh magazine. Practice (with dummy rounds if you can’t get to the range) this sequence a few times and you’ll quickly get the hang of it.
Four versions of the Remington 870 DM are available at present time. The entry-level variant is the 870 DM, with an MSRP of $599. This version has a standard stock, corn-cob fore-end and bead front sight. The variant shown above is the 870 DM Magpul, which in addition to the Magpul furniture also has a ghost ring rear sight and white-dot front sight, for $799 MSRP. The 870 DM Predator has the same sights and MSRP ($799) as the Magpul variant, but comes with a ShurShot thumbhole buttstock with camouflage pattern. Finally, Remington's short Tac-14 will also be available with a detachable magazine.
Remington 870 DM Caliber: 12-gauge Barrel Length: 18.5 inches Choke: Fixed IC Furniture: Black synthetic Super Cell recoil pad, "Corn Cob" fore-end Magazine Capacity: 6 rounds MSRP: $529