11-87 Care And Feeding


I have a Rem 11/87 which has fired aprox 5000 rounds. About 1000 rounds ago I noticed that the Action Bar Sleeve (that’s what it’s called in the parts list – it’s that big black round piece that goes right around the mag tube and it has a flat machined on to the top of it) had a split about 2mm wide running along the top of it. It ran the same way as the mag tube.

I thought that perhaps it had been there all along, and was in fact meant to be there. But on looking closer I could see that the edge of the split was jagged, like it had been wearing and bits of metal had been flaking off the edges. I went to see the shop where I’d bought it. These guys didn’t know a lot about it, but they arranged a replacement bit from the Remington importer at no charge, so I didn’t complain. The replacement bit had no apparent split along the top.

I was shooting skeet with a mate last weekend, and his 11/87 jammed. We pulled it to bits, and it looked like the action bar sleeve was sticking. Once we got it off and wiped it out it came right. His action bar sleeve had the same looking jagged split along the top. We guessed that perhaps a bit of metal had flaked off and acted as a bit of a wedge between it and the mag tube to temporarily jam things up.

When I got home I had a careful look at my gun, and I could see that my new action bar sleeve seemed to have developed the same split as my old one. My basic question is this normal, and does it cause any problems (apart from the occasional jam if a bit of metal flakes off and gets stuck in the works).

Your outpourings are, as usual, eagerly awaited.


Mike New Zealand

Dear Mike,

I don’t have any Remington autos on hand at the moment, so I am doing this from memory- a risky thing with me.

I recall all the action bar sleeves that I had were sort of shaved on the top to clear the barrel. This produced a thin spot in the part. It looked nasty, but it never caused any problems in any of my six 1100s. I believe that this part has remained unchanged in the 11-87, but I could be wrong. Remington has changed parts and production methods on the fly in the past, but they don’t do it often.

If you are concerned about the part, just dress the jagged area with a file and then glance at it every time you clean the gun to see if any cracks develop. My guess is that they won’t. If trouble does develop, in a part that size it will probably develop slowly and give you plenty of chance to change the part out. Though I have never owned an 11-87, over the years I probably broke every part it was possible to break in an 1100. I never broke an action bar sleeve.

One piece of advice with the Remington autos (and with all autos)- keep a fresh mainspring in the gun. That’s the big spring that goes in the tube in the stock. I recommend that you change it every 10,000 rounds. It’s easy enough to do and the spring is inexpensive. When you do it, make sure to wear glasses. That spring is under pressure and can pop out with surprising force.

The mainspring is the only thing that keeps the gun from beating itself to death. As the spring ages the bolt will come back faster and faster. It will start to throw the ejected hulls farther and farther. The bolt will also start to strike the rear of the receiver harder and harder. One of two things will then happen- the receiver will develop a crack or the rear of the action bar sleeve will start to pound the front of the receiver and will separate the magazine tube. I’ve had both happen to 1100s before I realized that my mainspring was worn out. Change that mainspring like you change the oil in your car. Trust the Technoid on that one- and on all else, of course.

Best regards,

Bruce Buck

The Technoid writing for Shotgun Report, LLC

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