I've been getting a lot of hits on the posting Remington 870 Express and just this morning I realized that I had first talked about that shotgun in September 2005. When I bought the shotgun it had some kind of weird camo pattern on the stock, so I took it apart, stripped the paint, and finished it with hand-rubbed linseed oil. Then, I put a Choates extension on the magazine tube, then I decided I didn't like it with the extension and went back to a standard length tube. The shotgun has remained in pretty much that configuration ever since. I did add a carry strap.
When I was younger, growing up, we very seldom saw a carry strap on a shotgun. That wasn't the fashion. As times have changed, I've come to appreciate some sort of strap on every long gun. It really helps when you've in the woods and this shotgun is a woods gun.
It's got a smooth bore slug barrel with rifle sights. Surprisingly, it's got choke tubes. Originally, I bought this gun for law-enforcement work, and it's seen its share of that. It still rides with me on the occasions where I think it might be useful, but nowadays it's primarily a sporting shotgun. There have been several cases of target ammo run through it on the various clays courses. It shoots to point-of-aim with slugs and the sights center the pattern nicely at normal shotgun ranges. This shotgun would make a really nice deer gun for those places where the range is short and for those places where rifles aren't allowed.
This is a pawn-shop shotgun. I'm a big fan of pawn-shop shotguns and I feel that very soon (between Christmas and Easter) there will be some great deals on used shotguns in the pawn shop racks. Last Autumn I bought a nice 870 Express for $200 (vent rib, choke tube barrel) for a gift. I'm always looking for a nice example of a pump shotgun, and if you know your counter guy and can dicker with him, you can generally have your pick of the litter for under $250.00. Sometimes considerably less than $250.00. In either Winchester, Mossberg, or Remington brand, it's hard to beat a good shotgun for dependable value.