Reliving the 80’s Witness Protection Shotgun

I just could not help myself.  A local shop had Remington Tac 14 Hardwoods in stock for a great price.  After the lessons learned in my first OIS with a dead stock Remington 870 Police, I had Hans Vang build me a couple Remington 870 Express Vent Rib barrels.  Ported with the full treatment from Hans.  I did a 19 inch for my personal gun and a 14 inch I would take to work along with a full Surefire forend.  I had a NFA legal gauge stashed at work and would put my 14” barrel and light on it and ran it that way working patrol and crime suppression until we eventually issued full House Vang guns.  I dug up the 14” barrel the other day.  Ran down and grabbed the Tac 14 and swapped the barrel.  It also now has a Vang Safety and an old Delrin follower from Hans. Added a Buffalo leather sling.  I am so happy with it.

Because of age and luck I had great experience with these.  A very early mentor and hero was a monster legend with the USMS and used a real Witness Protection shotgun extensively.  He was a very serious gun dude, and I got the solid information on what it will do and won’t do from him.  

When I took over training the SWAT team a couple years later they were running some top folder 870’s.  I trashed the stocks and reworked the guns.  I started testing and working with a similar gun to the Witness Protection Guns with a 12” barrel.  Played with different stocks in the field.  Eventually, we built a pair of 12” barreled heavily customized 870’s by Robar.  They utilized textured conventional wood stocks cut very short with small recoil pads.  They good be shot extended or shouldered on the huge armor we wore back then.  Our grenadiers were assigned them and they shot EVERYTHING out of them.  Buck for warrants, breaching rounds, less lethal, gas, flash bang, and slugs and sabots.  You couldn’t give these guys and MP5 or Benelli, they were absolute Maestros of the snubnose 870.  We learned a ton from actually using them a lot in numerous scenarios.  They will not do everything, but a large human who will manhandle it (our guys who ran them were both 6’4”) can do some serious work inside ten yards.  

I plan to really have some fun with this thing and actually use it.  Enjoy....I give you the War Hammer.  B88C56D2-623B-44AD-B0D4-2E4F458C10176F2E449A-BD70-41A9-A4A9-F5175A8381C4

"If I had a Grandpa, he would look like Delbert Belton"

Let those who love the LORD hate evil. The one who guards the lives of his godly ones will rescue them from the power of wicked people. Psalms 97:10 Trooper Troy Duncan-EOW 5-19-84 Deputy Erik Jon Telen-EOW 8-21-2001

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X-ray Dave posted:

Love the wood and leather sling ! What's the advantage of the vent rib ?

Dave

With bead sighted shotguns, the vent ribs tend to put the bead in much better alignment.  Obviously, with a stock it is better.  With this thing the rear ramp of the vent rib gets you to level the gun.  Without a stock and no rear sight reference people tend to shoot them high.  I can foresee sending the stock barrel to Vang Comp to get a sight assembly done that incorporates a front and rear like the DEA X/S Sight set up.

"If I had a Grandpa, he would look like Delbert Belton"

Let those who love the LORD hate evil. The one who guards the lives of his godly ones will rescue them from the power of wicked people. Psalms 97:10 Trooper Troy Duncan-EOW 5-19-84 Deputy Erik Jon Telen-EOW 8-21-2001

That is nice. As my big brother Dave mentioned the wood makes it look even better. 

Mojo/Mark
__________________________
Yo homey, is that my briefcase...?
Vincent from "Collateral"
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You want the good life, you break your back, you snap your fingers, you snap your neck... Prong/Demon Hunter
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Because...I Can. 


Joined: 9/30/09
Location: Northern Nevada (Reno/Sparks)

MOJONIXON posted:

That is nice. As my big brother Dave mentioned the wood makes it look even better. 

That barrel spent a lot of time in your old neighborhood....;-)

"If I had a Grandpa, he would look like Delbert Belton"

Let those who love the LORD hate evil. The one who guards the lives of his godly ones will rescue them from the power of wicked people. Psalms 97:10 Trooper Troy Duncan-EOW 5-19-84 Deputy Erik Jon Telen-EOW 8-21-2001

Dagga Boy posted:
MOJONIXON posted:

That is nice. As my big brother Dave mentioned the wood makes it look even better. 

That barrel spent a lot of time in your old neighborhood....;-)

I’ll bet it did. So glad I escaped in one piece. You, too, brother. You being there almost certainly contributed to me being essentially whole. Be looking for a PM here soon.  We haven’t talked in a while. 

Mojo/Mark
__________________________
Yo homey, is that my briefcase...?
Vincent from "Collateral"
__________________________
You want the good life, you break your back, you snap your fingers, you snap your neck... Prong/Demon Hunter
__________________________

Because...I Can. 


Joined: 9/30/09
Location: Northern Nevada (Reno/Sparks)

I cannot say regarding the Tac-14's specifically, but the other 870 model's quality has declined since the 80's-90's.  You can rack a new one next to an older one, and literally hear and more importantly-feel-the difference between the two.

Again, I haven't even held a Tac-14, but one would only think the majority of the parts (I guess everything EXCEPT the barrel and stock) come out of the same parts inventory.  Maybe not "bad", but not near as good as they once were. 

It’s Bagwan in custody.

Know thy enemies, but be aware of thy friends...

 

The average age of the world's great civilizations has been 200 years. These nations have progressed through this sequence:
from bondage to spiritual faith;
from spiritual faith to great courage;
from courage to liberty;
from liberty to abundance;
from abundance to selfishness;
from selfishness to complacency;
from complacency to apathy;
from apathy to dependency;
from dependency back again to bondage."

Bill, Idaho posted:

Is that the infamous Bhagwahn (of the Rahsneesh, Madras Oregon clan) with one of his bodyguards??

My best friend was his bodyguard.....that is a United States Marshal escorting him to prison.  There is a great documentary on Netflix about that whole debacle.  I have a lot of insight from several different connections.  He was pretty much a very spiritual guy without much attachment to reality who was like a magnet for scumbags that surrounded  him.

"If I had a Grandpa, he would look like Delbert Belton"

Let those who love the LORD hate evil. The one who guards the lives of his godly ones will rescue them from the power of wicked people. Psalms 97:10 Trooper Troy Duncan-EOW 5-19-84 Deputy Erik Jon Telen-EOW 8-21-2001

All double entendres  aside your wood is gorgeous . As cool as the WP shotguns look, {and they do look fucking cool] , I just can't envision them filling any niche I might have.Back woods bear gun perhaps ;but even then , I would be better served with a full stock. They must have their uses though.

Eat til you are tired sleep til you are hungry

So those things actually worked?  Found a few at  Mt. Weather that were rusted and they were replaced.  I have a 870 express that I would like to learn to work well.  Never really cared much for shotguns until I figured out, that is my limiting issue, I do not do much with shotguns and I should correct that. 

bestcounsel posted:

So, in this configuration it is shoot able vs regular pistol grip? Ala the new mossberg 590 shockwave?

i swear you posts are like Uncle Pats posts...I really get into them

Much more shootable than a regular pistol grip.

Thanks for the Uncle Pat comment, it made my day.

"If I had a Grandpa, he would look like Delbert Belton"

Let those who love the LORD hate evil. The one who guards the lives of his godly ones will rescue them from the power of wicked people. Psalms 97:10 Trooper Troy Duncan-EOW 5-19-84 Deputy Erik Jon Telen-EOW 8-21-2001

Spacetaco posted:

So those things actually worked?  Found a few at  Mt. Weather that were rusted and they were replaced.  I have a 870 express that I would like to learn to work well.  Never really cared much for shotguns until I figured out, that is my limiting issue, I do not do much with shotguns and I should correct that. 

They worked for a very limited role.  The two places in LE that were a good fit was as a “lap gun” for vehicle surveillance folks and escort stuff where you were moving people or prisoners in tight confines with a team.  A 14” full stocked gun is a much better all around gun (and I prefer a shotgun for just about every role inside of 25 yards), but these new ones let you were around a $200 tax stamp on a $400 gun and add a tool.  Also a great out of the box breaching gun without any extra paperwork.

"If I had a Grandpa, he would look like Delbert Belton"

Let those who love the LORD hate evil. The one who guards the lives of his godly ones will rescue them from the power of wicked people. Psalms 97:10 Trooper Troy Duncan-EOW 5-19-84 Deputy Erik Jon Telen-EOW 8-21-2001

Thanks, DB.  I like the run down.  I have been rethinking things a lot in the past 6 months and I really enjoy reading your posts.  I really do need to take a shotgun class and learn to run a stock 870 better.  I just remember seeing these shotguns and thinking why other than breaching but I never thought of the lap gun part and tight confines for prisoner transport.  Thanks again learning has occurred.

 

I guess I could finely have a 50BMG too... http://wolfhillammo.com/50bmgm...2gauge2-34sabot.aspx

I got a good deal on  a Tac14 from my gun club. I had recently "demil'd" an 870 full sized to shoot sporting clays. So had a SF light and Mesa Tac sidesaddle, Vang safety and follower laying around and mounted it all on the shorty.  Not a serious gun, but makes people smile when the see it. 

Just got a "brace" for it, can't believe it is not a SBS, but letters from ATF and the manufacture say it is not. Much more controllable. But overall, not the quality of. 90's Police model. 

 

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“Speak softly and carry a big stick;  you will go far. “

 Theodore Roosevelt

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Joined: 29 May 2008          Location: AZ

I have an 870P w Choate stock for travel. Mostly an AR guy, I'd prefer an AR pistol over one of these. But a properly run 12ga is a thing of beauty.

Our UC team has a 12 inch 870 w pistol grip for exactly what DB describes, a lap gun for surveillance and buys. These days they tend more toward a 10.5" suppressed AR but in our area yiu can go from tight subdivision to 30 acres of open field and a house just turning a corner.... and still be in the city. I don't have a lethal shotgun in the unit anymore, but with a mix of ammo, the times it came out i didn't feel undergunned. I just PREFER  a rifle..

 

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So low speed, i'm in Park.

"I could stand to hear a little more.." Jayne

Training is brief. Death is forever. PAY ATTENTION.

Joined: 6/14/03 1:02 PM

Spacetaco posted:

Thanks, DB.  I like the run down.  I have been rethinking things a lot in the past 6 months and I really enjoy reading your posts.  I really do need to take a shotgun class and learn to run a stock 870 better.  I just remember seeing these shotguns and thinking why other than breaching but I never thought of the lap gun part and tight confines for prisoner transport.  Thanks again learning has occurred.

 

I guess I could finely have a 50BMG too... http://wolfhillammo.com/50bmgm...2gauge2-34sabot.aspx

Almost like our revolver classes.  You need to take some training from folks who have actually spent a ton of time running the gauge in the the field.  They are a specialists gun, but for folks who know how to run them, they solve a ton of problems, particularly in domestic LE.  With slug, they are the best thing we have on cars which we deal with a lot.  For indoor and close quarters outdoor searches they are devastating at those ranges and put crooks down with minimal shots.  If you understand the specialty munitions, that is another factor.  I call it “offensive shotgun” training.  Home defense versus taking the gun to a fight are different and need to be trained different.  Most LE engagements are within the optimal range for where these guns are most effective.

"If I had a Grandpa, he would look like Delbert Belton"

Let those who love the LORD hate evil. The one who guards the lives of his godly ones will rescue them from the power of wicked people. Psalms 97:10 Trooper Troy Duncan-EOW 5-19-84 Deputy Erik Jon Telen-EOW 8-21-2001

MrMurphy posted:

I have an 870P w Choate stock for travel. Mostly an AR guy, I'd prefer an AR pistol over one of these. But a properly run 12ga is a thing of beauty.

Our UC team has a 12 inch 870 w pistol grip for exactly what DB describes, a lap gun for surveillance and buys. These days they tend more toward a 10.5" suppressed AR but in our area yiu can go from tight subdivision to 30 acres of open field and a house just turning a corner.... and still be in the city. I don't have a lethal shotgun in the unit anymore, but with a mix of ammo, the times it came out i didn't feel undergunned. I just PREFER  a rifle..

 

If you prefer a rifle, then run them.  The rifle is a solid multi use tool.  As far as the pistols and whole arm brace thing.....I don’t trust it, and I do not trust that it is staying.  For a 26” rifle, most know I am very much an AUG guy.  I think coming from  California and the blueprint for stupid firearms stuff they are the masters of working off “administrative decisions” and making things retro illegal.  I am not hating on folks running arm braces, I just won’t be one of them.  

The beauty of the gauge is I bring a lot of power with minimal rounds in a weapon that even the poster boy for stupid anti gun stuff Joe Biden finds acceptable.  In today’s world, a wood stocked firearm that shoots shotgun rounds is, to me, a fairly safe bet on a gun of this type.  I ordered a Ukulele case for it off Amazon.  Should be a good look with shorts, a Hawaiian shirt and flip flops.

"If I had a Grandpa, he would look like Delbert Belton"

Let those who love the LORD hate evil. The one who guards the lives of his godly ones will rescue them from the power of wicked people. Psalms 97:10 Trooper Troy Duncan-EOW 5-19-84 Deputy Erik Jon Telen-EOW 8-21-2001

FN posted:

+1 on the newer 870s being of poorer quality, however there are a lot of 870 “bird guns” sitting in pawnshops that can be had for a song.    

So far, I am not appalled.  The wood is good.....not like a high end Beretta good, but Remington cop gun good.  I will replace the plastic trigger housing, but I knew that going in.  I haven’t shot it yet, but so far I am happy.  It’s hard to screw up the 870 too bad.  The hardwood version comes with a magazine extension and hand guard/sling mount so the tube is not dimpled.  I am aware of issues with many newer guns, but this particular one seems okay so far.  

"If I had a Grandpa, he would look like Delbert Belton"

Let those who love the LORD hate evil. The one who guards the lives of his godly ones will rescue them from the power of wicked people. Psalms 97:10 Trooper Troy Duncan-EOW 5-19-84 Deputy Erik Jon Telen-EOW 8-21-2001

Dagga Boy posted:
X-ray Dave posted:

Love the wood and leather sling ! What's the advantage of the vent rib ?

Dave

With bead sighted shotguns, the vent ribs tend to put the bead in much better alignment.  Obviously, with a stock it is better.  With this thing the rear ramp of the vent rib gets you to level the gun.  Without a stock and no rear sight reference people tend to shoot them high.  I can foresee sending the stock barrel to Vang Comp to get a sight assembly done that incorporates a front and rear like the DEA X/S Sight set up.

People line things up when you give them a fighting chance. Peep/aperature/ghost ring sights work because we naturally center stuff, so look through a circle and set the front bit on the target, it'll work. 

Similar cognitive/physiological thingy for the rib. Held JUST below the eyeline (with bead or sights on top) it is a "roadway" tapering off with perspective into the distance. The eye finds and follows such things naturally (guessing: how we find trails in the woods) so you are a tiny bit quicker to pick up the front sight, and can use the rib alone as a snap shooting aid.

This was pretty robustly explored by industry (and the Army?) in the 80s, and was last seen seriously proposed with ACR candidates:

Colt ACR had a raised sight rib, at eye level, integral with some idea on cooling the barrel, as part of the handguard.

Yes, there is a front iron sight in there. 

When the ELCAN was removed there was a "Carry handle" which explicitly extended the sight rib line to encourage this behavior

The Steyr ACR had a shorter rib (but indeed, a sight rib) with backup sights, if the optic failed (I presume it could be quickly dismounted but do not recall how) as well. 

 

Since this program and their sensorized range was the start of many things, including taking optics as a weapon improvement seriously, it seems the data said: optics are the best, so you all get CCOs and ACOGs, and improvements in passive (iron) sights are not worth the size and weight penalties as even a backup method. 

 

But for old school, totally works. Worth having a rib, not just a bead on the barrel. 

The things that will destroy America are prosperity at any price, peace at any price, safety first instead of duty first, the love of soft living and the get rich quick theory of life. – Theodore Roosevelt

 

Joined: 19NOV2004   Location: Mission, Kansas

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bestcounsel posted:

i swear you posts are like Uncle Pats posts...I really get into them

Ditto

" I can foresee sending the stock barrel to Vang Comp to get a sight assembly done that incorporates a front and rear like the DEA X/S Sight set up." DB

I like that idea. 

I'd actually wondered about placing the sight on the rear of the receiver but don't know if it'd be worth the trouble.   I've seen pics of the standard Rem ramp adj. sight on the tac14  barrel but the location and sight radius doesn't   seem to be ideal.

 

FN posted:

+1 on the newer 870s being of poorer quality, however there are a lot of 870 “bird guns” sitting in pawnshops that can be had for a song.    

The problem is, if it ever had a buttstock, you can't turn it into one of these shorties without registering it as an SBS.

I built one from a pistol gripped 870 a couple of years before Mossberg and Remington joined the band wagon.  I wish I could find just the wood for a reasonable price.

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Mark

Swear allegiance to the flag Whatever flag they offer

Never hint at what you really feel

Teach the children quietly For some day sons and daughters

Will rise up and fight while we stood still

 

Joined:  2/24/2003                          Location:  Nevada, USA

Thanks for this post. I have been wanting to put together a pistol grip shotgun for travel or a camp gun but heard bad things about pistol grips. I actually have a pistol grip but never used it. I’m gonna pick up a cheap mossy and put one of these grips on it like a shockwave and try it on for size.

If you guys are going to do your own, there are two things about which you need to be careful.  First off, a donor gun can never have had a buttstock.  The ATF definition of a Shotgun is that it is meant to be fired from the shoulder, i.e. has a buttstock.  No buttstock ever means it is a firearm, not a shotgun.  Second, your overall length is 26" or longer.  The barrel length is not important unless it reduces the overall length below 26".  So a 12" barrel and a birds head grip is under 26", making it an AOW.  It pays to be familiar with those particulars.  An AOW is concealable, which is defined as less than 26" overall length, or ACTUALLY CONCEALED.  So if you slap on a single point sling and throw on a trench coat, even if the length is legal, the fact that you concealed it turns it into an AOW.   No vertical foregrips!

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Mark

Swear allegiance to the flag Whatever flag they offer

Never hint at what you really feel

Teach the children quietly For some day sons and daughters

Will rise up and fight while we stood still

 

Joined:  2/24/2003                          Location:  Nevada, USA

Mark, I know the 26" rule but I am not aware of the it came oem with a shoulder stock now "i" have reworked it by adding a pistol grip. 

I am sure I've seen Mossys sold here in Cali with a shoulder stock and an extra pistol grip included to make the change over. 

Thanks for the heads up.

You can put a pistol grip on a shotgun so long as the barrel is not less than 18".  What they market as the "Cruiser".  But because it has a buttstock, it is sold as a shotgun.  Remington sells PGO firearms (shotguns) with 18" barrels, but because they aren't sold with a buttstock, they aren't shotguns.  This shit is like Indiana Jones in The Last Crusade when he's walking on the floor, stepping on the right letters in the right order or the floor collapses.

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Mark

Swear allegiance to the flag Whatever flag they offer

Never hint at what you really feel

Teach the children quietly For some day sons and daughters

Will rise up and fight while we stood still

 

Joined:  2/24/2003                          Location:  Nevada, USA

Something like this would benefit from a Surefire foreend with integrated laser... it would remove my major issue, effective aiming. 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

So low speed, i'm in Park.

"I could stand to hear a little more.." Jayne

Training is brief. Death is forever. PAY ATTENTION.

Joined: 6/14/03 1:02 PM

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