Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Chamber music

It looks like a fuzzy portal to the afterlife, but in reality it's the world's worst photograph of a lengthened forcing cone. Had I not been so lazy and used my regular SLR instead of the point-n-shoot, you'd be viewing the world's second-worst photograph of a lengthened forcing cone.

But I was (so lazy), so you get the worst. Lucky you. And please forgive the grime. I just got the barrel back and I haven't yet run a patch through it.

In the ongoing project to extend the duck-killing days of my old 870 (of which you can read, if you'd like, how I acquired it and subsequently what I'm doing to it ) I sent the barrel off to shotgun specialist Mike Orlen to have it threaded for choke tubes and cut back to the first rib post, as well as have the forcing cone lengthened.

So what started out life as a 30-inch full-choke barrel that patterned really well with one steel load but not so much with everything else was returned to me as a svelte, lively tube that I hope will pattern well with just about anything, or at least a few more loads than it did before.

And while the jury is still out among some as to the effectiveness of lengthened forcing cones on both patterns and recoil, I'm hoping it helps a little with both. I guess we'll see.

Remington, in apparently mistaking me for someone who mattered, recently sent me a few boxes of their new Hypersonic steel loads to try out. I'll shoot a few at the pattern board next week and see how they (and the barrel) does.

In the meantime, remember, don't walk toward the light...


  1. Man I love an 870. Gotta be the VW Bug of shotguns - low maintenance, will run forever, can get parts anywhere, an aftermarket the size of Texas, just keeps on keepin on.

  2. I look forward to reading how the project comes out. I agree with Mark that 870's are durable and ubiquitous. However, the hardest-kicking shotgun I've fired was a plastic-stocked 870 running 3" magnums. I hope that forcing cone job helps both patterns and recoil.

  3. I like to learn many things from the you.