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Old 08-01-2020, 03:20 PM   #1
.17fireball
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Default Remington 11-87 problems

I bought an 11-87 Premier from my aunt after my uncle passed away. I don’t think the shotgun was used very much as it is in great shape. Took it to a sporting clays event last year and after a couple of shots it wouldn’t cycle or fully eject the first shell. Tried several more pairs and finally just put it back in the case and borrowed a buddy’s spare to finish the round. I assumed the barrel seal was bad because I know the gun was stored away for some time. I recently replaced the 2 piece piston and barrel seal with a new one from Brownell’s and thoroughly cleaned everything. Went to another sporting clays event this morning and it wouldn’t even cycle the 2nd shell. Action never cycled. What gives???? I’m fairly certain that the piston and seal is installed correctly. As I was cleaning it I made sure the gas ports were clear. Why won’t this thing cycle?? I’m using the Winchester AA 1 1/8 oz. #8. I Did try other shells last year (Fiocci 1 1/8 oz.) and had the same issues. Not a fan of the semi auto right now. I miss my old Maverick 88!! If it didn’t cycle it was my fault!
Thanks for the help.
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Old 08-01-2020, 03:49 PM   #2
Artos
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Did you replace the O'ring & clear up any carbon build up??

Improper installation of pistons / o-ring is the #1 reason they jam as the 1100 & 11-87 are dang reliable shotty's...maybe youtube to confirm. I would pull the trigger assembly & clean it up & check recoil spring tension with the t-bar leaf spring. Also pull the magazine spring & clean the tube out while your at it.
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Old 08-01-2020, 04:00 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Artos View Post
Did you replace the O'ring & clear up any carbon build up??

Improper installation of pistons / o-ring is the #1 reason they jam as the 1100 & 11-87 are dang reliable shotty's...maybe youtube to confirm. I would pull the trigger assembly & clean it up & check recoil spring tension with the t-bar leaf spring. Also pull the magazine spring & clean the tube out while your at it.
Yes sir I replaced the o-ring and installed the new version piston which is two pieces that snap together. Watched the install video several times but I’m about to watch it again just to be sure. Pulled the trigger assembly last night and cleaned it up with compressed air. Not sure how to do the recoil spring test but I’ll give it a google and see what I find. I pulled all parts out last night and gave them a good cleaning but I did not do the magazine spring. Just figured it’s something with the gas because it didn’t even try to cycle 4 out of the 5 times I shot this morning.
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Old 08-01-2020, 04:45 PM   #4
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Pulled it apart again and everything seems right. In the picture the piston on the left is the old 2 piece and the one on the right is the new piston from Brownell’s that snaps together. Mag tube is clean. I can work the recoil spring with the T spring? and it moves freely. Seems stiff but not really sure what it’s supposed to feel like. There is a groove on the mag tube. Maybe you can see it in the pic. The o-ring tends to sit in this groove when everything is together. See anything out of the ordinary??
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Old 08-01-2020, 05:06 PM   #5
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Looks good to me & grew up with them & darn near wore out the 11-87 in mexico. I've never seen the two piece piston assembly and have since moved to the Benelli M1 for my auto's. Been a while & I recall you put the flat piston on first and then the seal with the curve side that mates up to the piston's curved side & finish up with the o-ring into that groove. Every time I had problems I put it on backwards / wrong...if you can see air through your gas ports, I'm at a loss. When it's assembled back up does it feel smooth hand cycling & does the magazine eject / feed correctly by hand?? Only other thing I would try is some high brass to see if somethings out of balance but that is rare with gas autos. If it functions with hotter loads & hasn't been shot much it may just need a little break in??

The action spring should be firm & mostly just don't want to feel any snags.
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Old 08-01-2020, 06:00 PM   #6
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Quote:
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Looks good to me & grew up with them & darn near wore out the 11-87 in mexico. I've never seen the two piece piston assembly and have since moved to the Benelli M1 for my auto's. Been a while & I recall you put the flat piston on first and then the seal with the curve side that mates up to the piston's curved side & finish up with the o-ring into that groove. Every time I had problems I put it on backwards / wrong...if you can see air through your gas ports, I'm at a loss. When it's assembled back up does it feel smooth hand cycling & does the magazine eject / feed correctly by hand?? Only other thing I would try is some high brass to see if somethings out of balance but that is rare with gas autos. If it functions with hotter loads & hasn't been shot much it may just need a little break in??

The action spring should be firm & mostly just don't want to feel any snags.
Thanks for help Artos. I just loaded two shells in the tube and hand cycled it. It loads the first one fine but when I cycle it again it ejects the first shell but doesn’t close on the second one. Bolt stays open. It seems very stiff to me. It “hurts” my finger when I cycle it hard and fast for the hand cycle test but it doesn’t seem to be binding up. Just very stiff. I’ll have to try some heavy loads next time I’m out. Unfortunately I’m a city dweller now. I definitely miss the old days when I lived in the country.
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Old 08-01-2020, 06:32 PM   #7
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Again, this is all old school recollection, but I think you need to let go of the handle on the end of the back cycle quickly to get the follow up shell to ping the release to go forward, just like you were loading an AR. If you hold it back with a delay it can hang up & then it allows you to clear the released shell.

Also, with the action locked back toss in a shell or pull w/ one released from the mag, hold it back & push the mag / feed button & let it fall slowly while holding to see how it hangs up vs going full speed. I remember my old 11-87 would only feed at full force on her own when new but could close slowly into battery while holding lever as she got older / more tired.

I would make sure the chamber is clean, lube that sucker up and & if it runs with hotter loads, let her rip & break it in...I have to do that with my benelli's when new, but they are recoil operated but can usually go back to 1oz loads after only a few boxes of hot. Usually not something needed w/ gassers but worth a shot if she likes eating the hot ones.
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Old 08-02-2020, 09:30 AM   #8
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Fireball, I don't own one but my brother bought one 8 or 10 years ago. When he bought it it would not cycle lighter loads. We cleaned it, called Remington and tried everything we could think of, we were at a loss. He had to shoot a hi brass shell in it to get it to eject and cycle. He ran about a case of hi brass through it and it now cycles anything he puts in it. I think like Argos said, run some hi brass Or 3” through it and see what that does.

Nothing scientific here just remember my brothers issue.

Best of luck with it.
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Old 08-02-2020, 10:18 AM   #9
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Agree with what Artos said.
Which AA’s were you using?

They are great shells, and what I prefer, but the 1145’s (light target) can be a little light for an 11-87. Generally fine in an 1100. I typically like at least the 1250’s for dove hunting, and you might be able to break it in with 1250’s or 1300’s.


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Old 08-02-2020, 02:45 PM   #10
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Agree with what Artos said.
Which AA’s were you using?

They are great shells, and what I prefer, but the 1145’s (light target) can be a little light for an 11-87. Generally fine in an 1100. I typically like at least the 1250’s for dove hunting, and you might be able to break it in with 1250’s or 1300’s.


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Well I would have sworn I used the 1250’s but I checked the empty box and they were the 1145. Artos said it too and so did Junkmanhunter. I’m gonna run some high brass 3” through this thing and see if I can get it broke in. I knew it hadn’t been used much at all but I figured it would eat about anything I put in it. My buddy’s CZ I took with me as a backup ate those AA’s without so much as a hiccup! Not much experience with the semi autos but I think y’all have me headed in the right direction. Thanks for everyone’s input
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Old 08-02-2020, 03:02 PM   #11
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I wouldn’t spend the $$$ on expensive 3” shells...any 2 3/4” pheasant loads with lead moderately priced will work...repeated proper cycling breaks them in & 3” won’t speed it up.
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Old 08-02-2020, 10:20 PM   #12
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Quote:
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Well I would have sworn I used the 1250’s but I checked the empty box and they were the 1145. Artos said it too and so did Junkmanhunter. I’m gonna run some high brass 3” through this thing and see if I can get it broke in. I knew it hadn’t been used much at all but I figured it would eat about anything I put in it. My buddy’s CZ I took with me as a backup ate those AA’s without so much as a hiccup! Not much experience with the semi autos but I think y’all have me headed in the right direction. Thanks for everyone’s input


I bet it runs w 1250’s
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Old 08-02-2020, 10:41 PM   #13
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My 870 never did this to me. Or my mossberg 500.
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Old 08-02-2020, 11:17 PM   #14
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I bought an 11-87 Supermag 7 or 8 years ago and it would never cycle reliably, even brand new. I ended up trading it to a guy for a pistol, he said he could get it running. He never did either.
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Old 08-02-2020, 11:41 PM   #15
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I bought an 11-87 Supermag 7 or 8 years ago and it would never cycle reliably, even brand new. I ended up trading it to a guy for a pistol, he said he could get it running. He never did either.
Challenge accepted!
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Old 08-03-2020, 02:20 AM   #16
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Challenge accepted!
LOL, but I have one that the charging handle is so loose the it is only good for 1 or 2 shots then it is gone...
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Old 08-03-2020, 09:45 AM   #17
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Did you clean the recoil spring assembly that is in the stock?
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Old 08-03-2020, 09:54 AM   #18
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Did you clean the recoil spring assembly that is in the stock?
No sir I did not. I’ll pull it apart again this evening if I get time. Are they easy to remove?
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Old 08-03-2020, 09:58 AM   #19
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I wouldn't remove the recoil spring until you try shooting hotter loads...you will need to remove the butt pad & take a big screw driver to it. Since you say it hasn't been shot much those really don't need attn until there has been a ton of rounds through the gun. If it felt smooth pushing on the T then it's likely fine.
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Old 08-03-2020, 10:32 AM   #20
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It's not hard to do. It can get really, really nasty in there. I have an older Premier too(I want to say it was somewhere around a 96-97 model?) I've found that the o-ring being fresh is critical and the gun doesn't like much lube left on it. I've had it jam once or twice before when it was left fairly wet. I've only cleaned that recoil spring once that I can remember even though it's a fairly low round count for it's age, but it was filthy in there. Made a big difference for me in reliability for me.
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Old 08-03-2020, 10:35 AM   #21
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I'd also try what Artos mentioned and run some hotter shells through it first and see what happens. It's definitely worth a try.
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Old 08-03-2020, 03:01 PM   #22
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hi brass is the ticket
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