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Old February 19, 2019, 17:03   #1
ByronF
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Old Wingmaster Weakness

I seem to be inventing reasons to grab up old Wingmasters. My kids, 8 and 9, are now equipped. 1951, 1973, 1976, 1983...

Keep thinking to buy a cheap beater to blast and park but every time I get one they clean up too nice.
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Old February 19, 2019, 17:27   #2
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I have a fondness for old wingmasters, Winchester 97's and old Ithaca 37's. Out of the three the old wingmasters seem to handle the best and have the smoothest action, at least to me they do.
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Old February 19, 2019, 17:50   #3
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Quote:
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grab up old Wingmasters
Maybe we should start a support group for those afflicted with 870 fever? You are not alone brother!
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Old February 19, 2019, 18:09   #4
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Ithaca 37 are another classic. Every one I've seen has the screws in receiver all chewed up. I like the bottom eject amd slam-fire ability. But I'm so accustomed to 870 controls I figure to dance with what brung me.
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Old February 19, 2019, 18:14   #5
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Id post photos but it's more work than its worth to get some praise and invite you all to stroke my ego. Lets book some productivity! You can all compliment my Wingmasters, detailing your favorite feature of each, and I'll skip the part where I actually host amd post photos.

Imagine three old 12 ga and an old heavy frame 20. Proceed with your praise. GO.
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Old February 19, 2019, 18:20   #6
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But I'm so accustomed to 870 controls I figure to dance with what brung me.
This is me

A Wingmaster was the first shotty (maybe the first gun) I bought with own hard earned money about age 14 or so. After 40 years I believe I could grab one asleep in the dark, in any physical or mental condition, and operate it if needed intuitively.

A few years ago I thought I needed to be "one of the cool kids" with fancy O/Us for dove hunting. That lasted about a season and a half of me shooting over the top of 90% of the birds before I "woke up" and went back to my trusted 870s, and was immediately "back on my game" of being a fair decent wing shot
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Old February 19, 2019, 19:57   #7
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I like getting them and cleaning them up too, but so do a lot of other people now, so they are not a bargain any more.

My favorite pump shotgun to stand there and shoot is a Maverick 88.
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Old February 19, 2019, 20:24   #8
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I allow myself just one

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Old February 19, 2019, 21:37   #9
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That looks painful.
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Old February 19, 2019, 21:40   #10
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I bought my first Wingmaster in 1970 for I think, $105.00 NIB with several boxes of birdshot and a case of clay pigeons from Beikircks in Rochester, NY. It has a 20" slug barrel and has put lots of meat in the freezer and friends now refer to it as the canoe paddle that shoots. Sometime along the way I bought a bird barrel for it too and then a barrel that somebody had fubared trying to install a choke tube. That one got cut down and a red dot mounted to the rib which has helped to add to the freezer stock. I have another that is sort of outfitted as "tactical" thing for HD. I've had several more pass through my hands over the years as I keep leaving low bids on them at the local gun auctions and get one every now and then. Mostly the older ones with the plain barrels and corn cob type forends. The older ones are very smooth in operation and don't have any plastic parts. If anybody asks me what kind of shotgun they should get, it is at the top of my list.
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Old February 19, 2019, 22:46   #11
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I was out of state and wanting to hunt some ducks for a Christmas morning duck and gravy that my grandma wanted to make. Went to the local newly opened Walmart or was it Woolco and bought me a 870 for $125 out the door.

I had just turned 18 at the time....still have the shotgun and the memories!!
Picked up a 870 in 20 gauge when a co-worker needed to cash out in a divorce, still have it as well....he never came to buy it back for the same money...dummy

Thanks to another member here, I added another 870 to the corral...the pics made it look like a battered "has been" as well as the price. When it arrived a wipe down/cleaning and it started to show some shine!! Needless to say, I am happy!
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Old February 19, 2019, 23:07   #12
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Those shuckers are smooth. The old ones,I mean. The new ones are gritty.
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Old February 20, 2019, 06:48   #13
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Quote:
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I allow myself just one

You allowed yourself a dandy. Recommend labeling barrel end "LETHAL" and buttstock "LESS THAN LETHAL". Is the folder as uncomfortable as it looks? I still want one.
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Old February 20, 2019, 07:31   #14
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You allowed yourself a dandy. Recommend labeling barrel end "LETHAL" and buttstock "LESS THAN LETHAL". Is the folder as uncomfortable as it looks? I still want one.
It's just for looks, you don't actually have to shoot it. As "everybody knows" all you have to do is rack a shell in the chamber and the bad guys lay down and cry.
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Old February 20, 2019, 09:19   #15
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You allowed yourself a dandy. Recommend labeling barrel end "LETHAL" and buttstock "LESS THAN LETHAL". Is the folder as uncomfortable as it looks? I still want one.
Yes, yes they are. I put one on one of my 870s... yes, I have an 870 “problem” as well. Ran about ten rounds of high base 00 through it, holy smokes. The folder is a great addition to an 18” bbl, but jeez it’s not “comfortable”.
When I think smooth shotgun my ‘73 wingmaster is it.
When I think comfortable shotgun, my Belgian a5 fits the bill.
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Old February 20, 2019, 10:12   #16
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You allowed yourself a dandy. Recommend labeling barrel end "LETHAL" and buttstock "LESS THAN LETHAL". Is the folder as uncomfortable as it looks? I still want one.
Last time I fired one was 1984.
Used to fold it up, and stand around on rooftops looking out at the big city.
Got that the folder Wingmaster "for nostalgia." Aint gotta take no punishment to be nostalgie.

If I wanna hand out punishment with a 12 gauge, I've got this upgraded "Wingmaster" knock-off.



Somebody was shooting .30 cal on this target before me. When I was testing, I stuck it out there at 50 yards, and laid the knockoff over an ammo can. Kicks pretty good with slugs, but seems to group OK. I was aiming 6 o'clock on the black. That low shot was me flinching on the 5th shot.

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Old February 20, 2019, 10:40   #17
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Nice shooting, WEG. I suspect most folks underestimate just how well a shotgun can serve as a lead delivery system. Surprised more than a few people shooting slugs from a smooth bore as opposed to the rifled barreled variety. Most notably from a Benelli M4. Brother owns a Tar Hunt that shoots rifled slugs like a rifle.

Now the Benelli is gone. The 870 got sold along with it's 1100 cousin. Never could love that 1100, but the 870 was a great shotgun. All I have left now is a CZ exposed hammer coach gun and an old Ithaca M37. The CZ has way too much nostalgic look and feel to part with. The 37 has way too much real nostalgia and history to ever let go. Started out as a parked 8 shot riot gun. Then done with a 5 round tube and aftermarket barrel with chokes. Fastest shooting and best handling pump shotty ever owned. It was one of my first shotguns and probably the one I'll be buried with.
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Old February 20, 2019, 12:22   #18
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870 fan for decades and have several around the homestead, all Wingmasters except one. I'm never more then a few feet from an 870 while at home.

Just an FYI, the weak point on a 870 is the firing pin. If you own 870's, keep a few firing pins around. Especially if your 870's are for SHTF scenarios.
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Old February 20, 2019, 21:14   #19
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I was looking at one of my Wingmasters today, and tried to look up the date of manufacturer by serial number but all I could find were numbers that started with a letter.

The serial number I'm trying to find is 407839V.

Letters on the left side of the barrel are K B T.

Letters on the right side of the barrel are R E D.

Any ideas??
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Old February 21, 2019, 06:18   #20
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You can also call remington with your receiver serial number. Interweb says their response is not always accurate but within a year I'd hope.

They say my 24XXX serial was first year 870. Five digits so could be true.
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Old February 22, 2019, 01:28   #21
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Between wingmasters and police magnums I must have over 20 if I have 1.
3 of those top folding stocks too.


But Winchester model 12's are my real weakness.

Sad thing is after my spinal surgery I really need to switch to 20's.

...you seen how much people want for a model 12 in 20!?!
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Old February 22, 2019, 06:04   #22
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Originally Posted by Nomad, 2nd View Post
Between wingmasters and police magnums I must have over 20 if I have 1.
3 of those top folding stocks too.


But Winchester model 12's are my real weakness.

Sad thing is after my spinal surgery I really need to switch to 20's.

...you seen how much people want for a model 12 in 20!?!
You have any early 50's rem 870? Are they blued inside the receiver?
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Old March 02, 2019, 18:18   #23
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Intervention time? An 870 TX came home with me from gun show. Cant say no to a not-rusty Wingmaster for $180. And while a fairly rare Trap Special, its no longer in collectible condition. And who actually "collects" 870? I pile them up. Its different.
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Old March 02, 2019, 21:24   #24
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Last Sunday. 25 yards with an old police 2&3/4" only 870 I picked up. Slugs.

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Old March 03, 2019, 20:06   #25
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Ever notice some, but not all, vent rib barrels ring like a tuning fork when you rack the shotgun? I can swap barrels and get not a hint of a ring. Ribs do not seem loose on the barrels that do not ring. I wonder if its differences in the steel.
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Old March 06, 2019, 18:38   #26
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The Wingmaster is a great SG, IMO, still have the one I bought at Target (nice wood too!), around ~1981 <$200.
Also, really like my dads SG he bought after returning from WWII, the Winchester Model 12.
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