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I would like to put these two fine shotguns into a head to head battle!! Remington 870 wingmaster is a classic of course, and the Browning BPS Hunter with the same walnut stock is also a gorgeous gun!! When it comes down to it, which one of these two is going to be more reliable?? I know the BPS has the bottom loading and ejection and it would be harder to strip to clean. But how often do you have to do an overhaul of your gun anyways?? I hear soo many guys stating that the Ithaca 37 was one of the finest guns ever made if not the best. Isn't the BPS based on that exact same platform?? I also hear some statements that the new wingmasters are not nearly the quality of the ones of old. That being said has the BPS taken over as far as quality and standards go?? If you needed one of these two shotguns for the rest of your life, which one would it be?? Cheers
 

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both are high quality,

ive read bad reviews of both.

like the BPS is so complicated that when something breaks your really in trouble.
 

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savageman said:
If you needed one of these two shotguns for the rest of your life, which one would it be??
Here's my answer, the year is year of manufacture, I have bought all of these, new, in the year they were produced;

1976 - 870TB Trap, has fired 75,000+ shells, still use it for trap

1980 - 870SA Skeet

1989 - 870 Wingmaster 20g Ltwt (my "go to" upland gun)

1994 - 870TC Trap, my 2nd 870 trap gun

1995 - 870 Wingmaster LC 12g

savageman said:
I know the BPS has the bottom loading and ejection and it would be harder to strip to clean.
You are correct, this is true.

savageman said:
But how often do you have to do an overhaul of your gun anyways??
Several times a year if you are shooting 5,000+ shells on trap. Powder debris from this volume of shooting gets into the action of any gun and needs to be cleaned out periodically.

I have had to strip the 20g 870 down by kerosene light in a remote camp in northern Ontario after being caught in a sleet storm, I appreciate the easy of stripping them down.

The other important thing is that all of the guns, I have listed, fit me for their intended purpose better than anything else I have tried.

savageman said:
I hear soo many guys stating that the Ithaca 37 was one of the finest guns ever made if not the best.
I used to shoot them too in the early 1970's, they were generally well made though there were some rough ones made in the late 70's/early80's as I recall.

The butt stock must be removed on the Ithaca to remove the bolt, the BPS doesn't require this to be done.

savageman said:
Isn't the BPS based on that exact same platform??
Yes, it is similar. However, like the 870, it has an aluminum alloy trigger assembly and stamped internal trigger parts, though none of these items are a problem. The Ithaca 37 was an all steel gun, though they will break parts and malfunction, as will ANY design.

savageman said:
I also hear some statements that the new wingmasters are not nearly the quality of the ones of old.
I "hear" this too.

It has not been my experience, the newer guns I have seen in shops and those brought out to the club where I am the trapchairman are fine and function well. As a long term user, I have observed that the newer Wingmasters I have examined are better fit together than my 1976 870TB and I have "heard" some refer to the 70's and earlier as the "better" time of production.

My most recent purchase was a Sept 2005 manufacture 1100 Classic Trap, it has been excellent in all regards.
 

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I have owned 2 BPS and 3 Wingmasters. Both models are excellent in functioning, reliability and asthetics. I prefer the 870 because I shoot better with it. It is lighter, has a thinner pistol grip and the forearm reach is shorter. It just fits me better. If I had longer arms I'd call it a toss up......
 

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I've owned neither...but I do have a 20 ga BPS on lay-away. I can't wait to pick it up. There was also a used Wingmaster in 12 ga. Both fit me well as both brands tend to. However, I really wanted a 20 ga plus the Brn seemed a little nicer to me so I went with that gun. Also, a new Wingmaster was almost 100$ more if I remeber correctly! I can't see that... .

After much thought, I did go back to buy the Wingmaster too. It was in too good of condition to pass on plus it was less than 1/2 the $$$ of a new one. ...And I'm gonna be in enough trouble with the Brn purchase so I figured how much worse can it be/get. I was saved though - someone else bought it. Oh well... :?
 

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Really don't like guns that feed/eject from the bottom, a real mess if you have to deep clean one or if anything major happens to it, it's gunsmith time.
A Wingmaster is a different story, easy to service and work on, you can bust the gun down to the last widget and not worry about getting it back together right.
When I was a young spud allot of folks (mostly M12 owners) said a 870 was nothing more then a bunch of stamped parts...which is basically true but considering the 870 has been around for 56 years and there's about nine million of them floating around out there?
I'd say Remington got something done right! :lol:
:arrow: My 12 gauge wingmaster has lasted for over thirty-plus years without a glitch.
 

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The Wingmaster. It in my opinion handles better and has a better design. I personally would not own a gun that I could not field strip. Most BPS owners don't field strip them because it takes a gunsmith to put it back together again. The 870 is simple to maintain and clean. I am also not a fan of bottom ejection guns on the target range. Again that is just my opinion.

There is a reason that the 870 is the number one selling shotgun in the world. This gun has a cult following of devoted owners.
 

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If you have not shot a lot or are not mechanically inclined, by all means 870. However, the bps is not that hard to tear down. The problem is the (pardon the tech term but Im having a memory block) the two rails that hold the shells in the mag tube are loose and come out when you strip it. What I found is a wine cork holds them in nicely and the whole thing goes back together fairly easily BUT nowhere near as easy as an 870.

Bottom feed is fine, it just takes some trigger time to get set.

870 is much easier to make run right with the least effort.

However, BPS is its equal in all things.
 

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In my opinion, an older Wingmaster and a BPS are about a toss up. New Remington guns of any kind are questionable at best. They have lost their quality control and you never know what you will get. Again,JMHO.
 

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I will vote for the BPS but I have a very specific reason why. I'm Left-Handed. I much prefer the tang safety on the BPS vs. one mounted in front of the trigger. Eject is less of an issue for me as all left hand shooters of pump or semi-autos are used to stuff flying to the right.

If I was a right handed shooter I think I would go with the Wingmaster.

I've taken down both, and to be honest, if I was sitting in a duck blind with birds coming in, and my gun needed work, I would rather work on the Remington.

Being an upland snob and carrying the gun more than shooting, I prefer the BPS.
 

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I would recommend the 870 for its feel, simple design, and wide availability of parts and accessories.

The current production BPS can only be loaded through the magazine, which is a pain (at best) for clay target use. I've heard they're a bear to disassemble, as well.

If you search these forums, you will find gripes (both with and without foundation) about recent quality control of BOTH the 870 and the BPS. Some folks may simply prefer older guns, but I have purchased 5 brand new Remington firearms over the past two years and I feel Remington's quality control is excellent.

Please be aware that current Remingtons, like many of today's guns, use light contour barrels that give a very "between the hands" balance. Older guns will likely have a heavier standard contour barrel that may provide a slight forward weight distribution, depending upon barrel length.
 

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The current production BPS can only be loaded through the magazine, which is a pain (at best) for clay target use.
Is there something new in their design. :?: My late eighties BPS can be easily single loaded. I never load through the magazine while target shooting.
 

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Shotgun T is correct. The PBS can easily be single loaded. You just have to know how.
 

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You can single load a BPS but you have to flip it upside down, drop the shell in and close the bolt while holding it upside down or perform some other kind of majorette stunt to keep the shell from falling out while you chamber the round. I've had a BPS, a Model 37 and a Wingmaster (several). The one that I still use is the Wingmaster. I recall not being able to shoot the BPS very well but its a well made gun. I recall that the Model 37 is prone to jambing. Although there is a benefit to bottom loading guns, they stay cleaner and dryer, I still prefer the Wingmaster for its pointability and shootability. Remingtons seem to fit everybody well for field shooting. Its a marvel really that Remington developed the perfect stock dimensions to fit the average man so long ago. Many manufacturers are still making production guns that don't fit the average man and the Italian guns, forget it. Most people can pick-up a Wingmaster or 1100 and shoot it well.
 

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"Italian guns,forget it" ?? Some of the best fitting guns are Italian. Many of the newer autos have stock shims that allow the owner to custom fit thir guns. Perazzi will fit the gun to you,exactly. Where can you get Remington to do that?

I find that the Remington M870 standard deminsions do not fit me and the grip is much too narrow. That is just my opinion.

Now about single loading a BPS.... I don't know what all the "flipping" is about. If you really have tried to single load the PBS it becomes quite easy and there is no "flipping" involved.
 

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A5guy said:
Shotgun T is correct. The BPS can easily be single loaded. You just have to know how.
I don't own any Brownings, so I don't want to start an argument over loading a BPS. However, every BPS owner I have shot with over the past 2 years have loaded their guns through the magazine. On new BPS's, it appears that the carrier is in the way, unless the slide is fully forward.

I find that odd, and would like to know if there's a "shortcut" these Browning owners don't know about.

Here's the Browning BPS Owner's Manual:

http://www.browning.com/products/manual ... bps_om.pdf

These are the only instructions Browning gives on how to load a current production BPS:

With the slide fully forward, insert a shell, nose first, through the bottom ejection port into the rear of the magazine tube against the magazine spring follower until the rim of the shell slips in front of the cartridge stop (Figure 8 ). Load additional shells in the same manner until the magazine is full.

To load a shell from the magazine to the chamber, depress the slide release and cycle the slide. Another shell can then be loaded into the magazine. Test locking of the breechblock
by attempting to retract the slide. The slide should not retract.
 

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WinM12 said:
I find that odd, and would like to know if there's a "shortcut" these Browning owners don't know about.
Yes, there is.

I shot an Ithaca M37 Supreme Trap from 1972 to 1976 steadily and became quite proficient at it. The same system works for the BPS.

With the gun empty and open, hold the gun right side up, muzzle slightly down, as you do with any repeating trap gun when on station.

"Bump" the fore end forward about 1/4", this will cam the carrier up to the upper part of its cycle, clearing a path to the chamber.

Insert a shell into the ejector port and "thumb" it directly into the chamber. This is the part that takes just a bit of practice.

Pull the for end back, the carrier will "drop" and now the shell cannot fall out even if the gun is tipped back.

When it is your turn to shot, close the gun and shoulder it in one motion.

With a bit of practice, this can be done easily, quickly and you keep pace with the trap squad. There is no loading one in the mag or cycling the action in this procedure.

Having said this, even though I was proficient at this and can still do it all these years later, I FAR prefer just tossing a shell in the side ejecting port of my 870TB or 870TC on trap.
 

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I just shot Trap two days ago for the first time with a BPS. I found it ackward to go through the motions just for one shell. To compound my dilemma, the lanes were activated audibly.

So when I racked the chamber, it would send off the clay. It started launching clays when it was the guy's turn next to me, every time I shot and went to eject the round. I finally had to time my movements right after the next person shot so the sound wouldn't be picked up. What a pain.
 
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