58 / 878/ 1100 / 11-87 Semi-Auto Shotguns





Model 58 :   The model 58, sometimes referred to as the Sportsman 58, was the first gas operated Remington shotgun.  It was introduced in 1956, discontinued in 1963.  It used basically the receiver section of the 870, a modified 870 barrel, and somewhat the marriage of the action slide/forend system of a 11-48 recoil operated gun, converted to make it gas operation.  This gun was made in 12, 16 and 20ga 2 3/4" chambering plus a separate 12 ga 3" magnum version.   The barrel sported a ventilated rib, with no plain barrels supplied.  This model only holds 2 rounds in the magazine as the recoil spring is inside the forward end of this tube.

The gas system was not self regulating but required the shooter to adjust the regulator to match the loads used.   This regulator also acts as a magazine cap has a Hi and a Low setting.  This is regulated by twisting the end cap to where the marks line up for Hi or Low. This means that if you are using a "trap load", your should use a Low setting, where a heavy duck load is used the Hi setting would be more appropriate.   If you allow the cap to get stuck between settings AND fire the gun, the cap will blow off the regulator base.   If this happens the gun will probably not function properly with any load, as it is trying to utilize both the Hi and the Low port holes.  The internal holes are different in size and quantity of numbers for each of the gauges.

Remington  Sportsman 58 Gas regulator

 Since the complete rear section and receiver were 870 origin, therefore firing pins, extractors, extractor spring and plungers and many of the trigger group parts are the same as for the current model 870.

Operating handles are the same as the model 1100 or the newer 11-87.  Much of the trigger group will be the same as the 1100.

The action bar assembly is different and only for the 58.   And there were 2 different types of these depending on the date of mfg.

Buttstocks off an 870 will fit as well as the stock bolt and washer.   Forearms will be a problem to find, as any of the newer models do not interchange.  And used 58 forearms come at a premium price.

Barrels are obsolete, but new barrel can be made by utilizing a new 870 barrel and drilling a gas orifice hole to accommodate the gas.  If no existing barrel is available, take a look at a 1100 barrel to judge the angle of the hole.   Determine the size of the hole by the chart listed below.   The conversion of a 870 barrel to a 58 is usually not within the scope of the average home gunsmith, as the hole has to be the EXACT location AND angle, or the barrel is ruined.


The 1100 barrel will fit, but NOT function properly because the gas system is different, using different gas port hole sizes.

Gas Port Hole Sizes :   On gas operated guns the gas port hole size is critical for the gauge and the load of shot. Listed below are normal specifications.

The sizes listed below are for lead shot, for steel shot the hole size may have to be opened up a drill size or two.

 Model  58

   12 / 20ga-30” (Magnum)

.0935” / #42 drill   1 ea Barrel
   “         “    12 / 20ga-28”/30” .1285” / #30   “      1  “       “
   “         “    2 / 20ga-26”

.136”  / #29   “

  1  “       “
   “         “    12 / 16ga Compensated .144”  / #27   “   1  “       “
   “         “    20ga -Compensated .1495”/ #25   “   1  “       “

Remington 58 factory exploded views


 Model 878 :   This model was a transition between the 58 and the later 1100.  It came into being in 1959 , discontinued in 1962.  Anything mentioned above for the 58 butt-stock, applies to this model.

The sizes listed below are for lead shot, for steel shot the hole size may have to be opened up a drill size or two.

 Model  878    12ga- (Magnum) .0935” / #42 drill

  1 ea Barrel  

   “          “    12ga-30”

.110”   / #35   “   

  1  “       “
   “          “


.116”  / #32   “     

  1  “       “
   “          “    12ga-26”

.120”  / #31   “

  1  “       “
   “          “    12ga- Compensated .125”  / 1/8"   1  “       “


IIf you have either of the above two models it would be advisable to not use them much as parts that can break are obsolete.  If it has sentimental value, hang it on the wall.  If you insist, what few rounds a average hunter would fire each year may not be bad, BUT do not even think about using them to shoot trap, where MANY thousands of rounds can be fired.  Or find a used model 1100.


Remington 58 factory exploded views


Model 1100 :   This model apparently became available in 1963.  The standard frame model was designed for 2 3/4" ammo, came with a plastic buttplate.  Chambering was for 12, 16 and 20ga on the standard frame.   The 28ga and 410 used a narrower frame and many times the wood was Mahogany which was lighter.  There was a 20ga Light Weight which used the same receiver as the 28ga.  The 3" magnum 12 and 20ga versions came with a rubber recoil pad.   It could have been had with either a plain barrel or a ventilated rib.

Remington 1100


It was different in the gas system in that it used 2 inverted taper gas pistons, initially used a steel ring as a seal around the magazine tube in the barrel hanger bracket.  This steel ring was later replaced by a neoprene O-ring.  There was a floating gas piston and bleed-off slots in the hanger bracket.  The barrel had gas ports drilled so it aligned with the front of the piston which aligned with the front of the piston behind the seal.  This piston pushed the action bars rearward which was attached to the breech bolt carrier, which was in turn attached to links like the previous 11-48 model used.  This then was driven against a recoil spring housed inside a tube inside the buttstock again like the 11-48.

This system function pretty well as a self-compensating unit.

The stocks were walnut which incorporated pressed in checkering.   There were a few Left Hand versions made.

Suffix Serial Number letters designate a gauge, & or a frame size for both the 870 / 1100 & 11-87

     12 ga.  2 ¾”     V      20 ga.  LW (small frame) K

     12 ga.  3” Magnum

M      LT-20 K
     12 ga.  3 ½” Magnum A      LT-20 Magnum U
     16 ga. W      28 ga. J
     20 ga.  (full size frame) X      410 H
     20 ga.  Magnum N      11-87  12ga.   PC

Remington 1100 factory exploded views


Gunsmithing the 1100 :     The guns need to be kept clean to function properly.  Trap shooters would purposely buy 3" guns, then shoot 2 3/4" trap loads in them so that the guns would not eject the fired cases on the firing line so they could recover the fired cases for reloading.  Many times IF the gun was recently cleaned it may occasionally eject even the fired trap load.   But let it fire a box of ammo, then it would function (or function like they wanted), not ejecting.

One thing to check if it malfunctions is to check the gas O-Ring seal.  These need to be cleaned and/or replaced if much gas is flowing by.  At this time be sure that the piston and the piston seal are in the correct relationship, otherwise the barrel will not seat against the receiver properly, the gun will malfunction.   So when you take it apart, be very observant, replace it the same as you took it apart.     The older guns had a picture decal on the inside of the forearm showing the proper sequence of assembly.   If you get in a bind and can not locate one of these O-Rings, go to a local automotive store, purchase a distributor shaft O-Ring for a older Dodge slant 6 engine.

For better service in wet weather, replace the gas piston and seal with the newer 11-87 stainless steel version.


The firing pin coil spring was replaced about midstream with one that looked like 2 it was 2 springs tied together that someone forgot to cut into.  This was for a reason, in that the original one long coil had a tendency to break in the middle and then one tail would bind inside the other, possibly binding the firing pin from retracting.  This new spring has better support.

At the time when steel shot came into use, Remington had a few barrels burst.  They did some tests and discovered that the barrels at that time were roll marked with the name, model, caliber right over the front part of the chamber.  This apparently set up some stress in that area.   So, they moved this roll marking farther forward thereby eliminating this potential problem.  Therefore the factory recommended that no steel shot be used in the older barrels with this rear roll-marking. 


Also the guns may not eject reliably with steel shot even with the newer barrels, depending on the ammo make and load.   If this is the case, then a gunsmith could open up the gas port hole a drill size, check for function, do it again if needed.

On gas operated guns the gas port hole size is critical for the gauge and the shot load.  Listed below are normal specifications.

Gas Port Hole Sizes :   On gas operated guns the gas port hole size is critical for the gauge and the load of shot. Listed below are normal specifications.

The sizes listed below are for lead shot, for steel shot the hole size may have to be opened up a drill size or two.

 Model 1100    12ga-34” Trap

.079”/ #47 drill

  2 ea. Barrel

    “         “


.079”/ #47    “   2  “       “  
    “         “

   12ga-26” Skeet

.086”/ #44    “      

  2  “       “  
    “         “    12ga-26”(Compensator)

.086”/ #44    “

  2  “       “  
    “         “


.073”/ #49    “   1  “       “  
    “         “

   12ga-34” (Duck-Goose)

.073”/ #49    “

  1  “       “


    “         “    16ga-28/26”

.076”/ #48    “

  2  “       “  
    “         “    20ga-28/26/22” .076”/ #48    “   2  “       “  
    “         “    20ga-28” (Magnum) .076”/ #48    “   1  “       “  
    “         “    20ga-26” (Compensator)

.086”/ #44    “

  2  “       “  
    “         “    20ga-28/26” (Light weight).

.067”/ #51    “

  2  “       “  
    “         “    20ga-28/26” (LT) .067”/ #51    “   2  “       “  
    “         “

   20ga-26” Skeet(LT)

.067”/ #51    “

  2  “       “  
    “         “    20ga-28” Magnum (LT)

.064”/ #52    “     

  1  “       “  
    “         “    20ga-28” (LW Magnum) .064”/ #52    “   1  “       “  
    “         “    28ga-Reg/Skeet .067”/ #51    “   2  “       “  
    “         “

   410- Reg.

.067”/ #51    “

  1  “      “

    “         “


.060”/ #53    “   2   “      “  

he model 1100 uses a “C” clip called the Intercepter latch retainer, std size #15398, with a thicker #15661 to be used if when fitting the standard  retainer, the latch is to loose. This should be installed with the sharp side toward the shoulder of the stud, otherwise the clip may not stay for long as it is stamped out of sheet steel, the top side of all stampings is sharp, while the bottom side will be slightly radiused before it is pushed thru the stamping die.

The early guns used a intercepter latch that sometimes the spring's tail would pop out of position behind the latch, bind things up inside the receiver.  The cure for this was to replace this latch with a newer style that had a lip that the spring was retained behind.

The intercepter latch stud in the receiver becomes battered or broken, the gun needs to be sent back to the factory for repair.

The action spring follower was originally made of steel.   This could rust, bind inside the tube.  Replace it with a new aluminum follower.  Also the action spring could get rusty, (especially if the shooter was a duck hunter and sat in a blind with the buttstock in the water),  figure on replacing these springs often for hunters who get the gun wet.

Check the barrel magazine bracket occasionally for the spring loaded detent still there and functioning.  The magazine tube cap has detent grooves all the way around on the underside.  These mate to the plunger, hold the forearm cap from unscrewing.  If the cap comes loose, the barrel then becomes loose, then weird things begin to happen.

If you get erratic feeding, you might consider checking the magazine spring.   This spring has to force the live round rearward with enough force to trip the lifter latch.  Replace the spring if any doubt exists.

And last but not least, the gun has to be "backed up".  This means the shooter has to hold the stock tight against their shoulder.  The gun needs a strong resistance since when firing, the internal parts are trying to move, but if the gun is also moving the same direction because you are holding it loosely or even if you are wearing a goose down vest will soften the recoil enough that the gun may not function reliably.   Visualize the gun tied to a couple of ropes from a tree, loaded and the trigger pulled.   The gun will move rearward under recoil, the system will not eject because all the energy is being exerted rearward, with nothing to resist.


Again in the heyday of Remington 1100s being used fro trap shooting, many shooters would purchase 3" magnum guns, but fire low base trap loads through them so that the guns would not eject the fired cases.  Some would even still eject the trap loads until a few boxes of ammo was fired to dirty up the gas system.

The fire control unit, (trigger guard assembly to most of us) is pretty well designed and usually only needs to be cleaned occasionally.  The one thing that will break more than most other parts here may be the lifter dog, which is a small spring loaded metal piece that is attached to the rear of the lifter that stops, holds the action open on the last shot.

Model 1187 :   This model was introduced in 1987 as a improvement to the 1100 in 12ga only and toted by the factory at that time as the Premier.  Most all the common parts still interchange except the extractor which was thickend.  The 1100 is still made in other chamberings.  Rem-Choke screw in choke system was introduced in with this model in 1987.  This Rem Choke is basically an insert that is a Win Choke threaded unit but the with the choke tube longer by about 3/8".    When Remington finally did come out with a threaded choke insert, it seemed that why they drug their feet so long was because of NIH, (Not Invented Here) as everyone of the other manufacturers were using the existing Win Choke unit, but named it something different (same interchangeable unit).

The extractor was widened, apparently for improved extraction.   The gas piston and seal was made in stainless steel .

The sizes listed below are for lead shot, for steel shot the hole size may have to be opened up a drill size or two.

Model  11-87    12ga

30” Premier/Field        

.101” /   # 38    2 ea.  Barrel 
    “         “    12ga 28”  “          “  

.101” /   # 35       

   2   “      “
    “         “    12ga

26”      “          “

.116” /  # 32    2   “      “
    “         “    12ga 30” Special Purpose   .101” /  # 38       2   “      “
    “         “    12ga 26”      “          “     .116” /  # 32     2   “      “
    “         “    12ga 30” Trap .116” / # 32    2   “      “
    “         “    12ga 28”    “ .120” / # 31       2   “      “
    “         “    12ga 26” Skeet .125” /  1/8"    2   “      “
    “         “    12ga 21” Spl Purpose Deer .083” / # 25 span    2   “      “

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Originated 05-17-06  Last updated 01-02-2017
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