Turn Remington 1100 Into Tactical Home Defense Shotgun
The Remington 1100 semi automatic shotgun in 12 GA or 20 GA makes an excellent tactical shotgun or home defense shotgun.
Buy the Remington 1100 Tactical shotgun for $700 or go the low buck route and build your own. The best 1100 model for home defense is the smooth bore deer gun with rifle sights. These smooth bore slug barrels usually come in 20″ or 21″ lengths and make excellent home defense shotguns with no modifications at all.
The first and most important thing to do is make sure the shotgun cycles when using all types of slugs, buckshot, and birdshot. If it is a new shotgun that cycles reliably then no parts replacement may be required. The Remington 1100 can be a reliable home defense weapon provided it is in tip top shape. The biggest problem the 1100 has is failure to feed, or failure to eject caused by old or worn parts. After a few years of service the action spring starts to lose strength and the piston and seals wear.
Before you go further get a copy of “The Remington M870 and M1100/M11-87 Shotguns A Shop Manual” by Jerry Kuhnhausen. This is a great book that has everything you need to know to tune up your shotgun, troubleshoot, make repairs, and keep it cycling like new.
Replace the action spring on a used shotgun every four to five years. It is located in the long tube that extends from the receiver into the stock. Remove the stock butt plate to remove the stock and gain access to the action spring inside the tube. Use caution and wear eye protection. The action spring is under pressure and will shoot out across the room if not careful
Next remove the fore end to replace the piston assembly and barrel seal. Take care to install the piston assembly in the proper direction, and replace the barrel seal “O” ring. These two easy to replace items will make a world of difference in how your 1100 cycles. Once the shotgun cycles reliably every time firing slugs, buckshot, and birdshot then it is ready to be your home defense shotgun.
If the shotgun you want is more than just a stock shotgun then the first mod to make is to increase magazine capacity by adding a magazine extension. The 20 inch barrel lends itself to a 3 round magazine extension. I used the Choate 3 round extension to increase magazine capacity to 7 rounds of 2 3/4″ shells. Seven shells in the magazine and one in the chamber. The Choate extension is a quality product that is easy to install and comes with a new spring, a barrel clamp, and a bright orange follower.
The next improvement is to make the shotgun easy to load by installing a Dave’s Metal Works Easy Loader. The Remington 1100 requires a release button be pushed to release the carrier for each shell pushed into the magazine. The shells have to be pushed in just right to depress the button or they won’t go in. The Dave’s Easy Loader makes loading fast and easy by adding a ramp carrier that automatically pushes the release while guiding the shells right into the magazine opening. Just as fast as you can push the shells, they slide easily into the magazine. Now you have a 7 + 1 round capacity shotgun that is quick and easy to load. The Easy Loader requires removal of the trigger group and some filing and fitting is required. The results are well worth the hour it takes to install. An excellent step by step slide series that details just how to install the Easy Loader can be found here.
A modification that I like but is a matter of personal preference is the addition of the SpeedFeed III stock and fore end. I like the full length stock with pistol grip. The pistol grip seems to relieve some of the felt recoil of the 12GA plus it looks cool. The SpeedFeed stock comes in a 13″ or 14″ LOP. The other feature I like about the SpeedFeed III stock is the shotgun shell storage. The stock holds 2 shells in each side providing a convenient way to keep 4 additional rounds easily accessible. Two shells are pushed into the spring loaded recess in each side of the stock. The fore end is a matching tactical black color. SpeedFeed also makes the same style stock without the shell holding magazine feature and also a plain black stock without the pistol grip.
There are other stocks available such as the collapsible stock, and the pistol grip. I have no use for the pistol grip on a 12GA shotgun but some people do like them.
Another improvement I made was to add a TruGlow green fiber optic front sight. It makes a huge difference in quickly picking up the front sight. The original rear rifle sight seems to work fine for me. The TruGlow fiber optic rear sight I got didn’t fit. It was held on by screws and my shotgun requires a dovetail.
That’s all I did to my Remington 1100 semi automatic shot gun to make it a reliable addition to my home defense arsenal.
Other good accessories that could be added include a flashlight, a laser, an additional shell holder or saddle, and to parkerize or Duo Coat the gun to make it look more finished.
I have heard of people shortening the barrel to 18.5 inches. Only have this done by a professional. The 1100 is gas operated and the shorter the barrel the less gas pressure is available at the gas ports to cycle the piston. If you want an 18.5 inch barrel make sure the person shortening the barrel knows how to match the gas port size to the barrel length otherwise the gas operated shotgun may not cycle with lighter loads.
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