How to Mount a Red Dot Scope to a Remington 870
There are many ways to go about mounting a red dot scope onto a Remington 870 shotgun. Some of these ways are expensive, while others require more time and energy at a cheaper price. The most common way is to use saddle mounts by replacing the trigger pins with bolts for the mounts. However, the most reliable method of mounting a red dot scope is drilling and tapping the receiver first and then installing the rail. You will need a drill and skills in gunsmithing in order to do this properly. That is why it may be better for beginners or average users to just use saddle mounts with bolts that replace the trigger pins. This method is much simpler and faster to install. Once the mount is placed on top, you just screw the red dot scope into it or snap it in depending on the model.
So, if you want to attach a red dot or scope to a Remington 870 there are several way to do it. Some of them expensive, some of them will require time and skills.
The most difficult but the most reliable solution to install a red dot scope on Remington 870 is to drill and tap the receiver and install rail. Do this only if you have required skills, tools and know what you are doing.
Read more: Drilling and Tapping Remington 870 Receiver to Install Rail (or Ghost Ring Sights)
But there are easier ways to attach red dot scope to a Remington 870. Saddle rails or saddle mounts installed like sidesaddles, using bolts which replace trigger pins:
There are many variants of saddle mounts for Remington 870. They have different features and different prices. Let’s start with simple ones:
No-Gunsmithing Optic Mount for Remington 870
It is important to understand that there are different saddle mounts available that have different features and costs. For example, the No-Gunsmithing Optic Mount is a cheap mount made of polymer. These are not as reliable as the metal mounts, but they are great to practice with and they are affordable to most gun owners. Because the mounting rail is polymer composite, there is no metal-to-metal contact and less chance of scratching the shotgun’s finish. Additionally, the mount will not rust, which could cause further damage to the shotgun’s finish. The mount according to the manufacturer is operational between -40F and 150F. Some composite materials can become brittle at very cold temperature and may soften somewhat when exposed to high heat.
No-Gunsmith Shotgun Mount is durable, lightweight and snug fit. It takes less than three minutes to install the mount. The design and color fits cosmetically with a weapon and actually enhances the looks. Some have concerns about stripping out the nuts that are used to replace the pressed pins on the shotgun. You should tighten the screws down snug, and make sure they have been started correctly so there is no chance of cross threading.
This is the most affordable saddle mount for scope for Remington 870. It has the low price but made of polymer which is not suitable for some shooters which prefer metal accessories.
Polymer rails will never be as reliable as metal ones. Good choice if you are not sure about saddle rail and only want to try it.
Fits Remington 870, 1100, 11-87; 12 and even 20 gauge; right or left handed models.
|No-Gunsmithing Optic Mount for Remington 870|
Aimtech Shotgun Scope Mount for Remington 870
Now if you want to go with a little more durability by getting a mount made out of aluminum then try the Aimtech Shotgun Scope Mount. It will be a bit more reliable as well.
Aimtech Shotgun Scope Mount for Remington 870 is little more expensive but made of aluminum which makes it more reliable.
|Aimtech Shotgun Scope Mount for Remington 870|
Remington 870/1100/11-87 Shotgun Scope Mount
But you can go a step further than this and purchase a mount made directly by Remington called the Remington 870 Shotgun Scope Mount. It is also made of aluminum, but the construction is simple and made just for the Remington 870. This will make the installation process a breeze because the instructions that are included will apply to your exact shotgun model.
870/1100/11-87 Shotgun Scope Mount from Remington. Made of aluminum, simple and reliable construction. Good choice for installation of scope or red dot sight.
|Remington 870/1100/11-87 Shotgun Scope Mount|
B Square Shotgun Saddle Mount
Made of aluminum. Nice and simple saddle mount. Two 1″ Weaver-Style Rings included.
|B Square Shotgun Saddle Mount|
Mesa Tactical Remington 870 Saddle Rail
Saddle rail from Mesa Tactical. This company is well know for its high-quality products. Mesa Tactical Remington 870 Saddle Rai is made of aluminum with cutouts that reduce weight.
|Mesa Tactical Remington 870 Saddle Rail|
Mesa Tactical Remington 870 Sidesaddle with Picatinny Rail
One of the best variants if you are looking for saddle rail. This is not only a saddle rail, it’s also a sidesaddle which enables you to have additional ammunition on your shotgun.
Lightweight and reliable, made of aluminum.
Mesa Tactical Remington 870 Sidesaddle with Picatinny Rail is a high-quality product which is highly recommended.
|Mesa Tactical Remington 870 Sidesaddle with Picatinny Rail|
Mesa Tactical Shotgun Sureshell Carrier with 20 Inch Rail
The coolest and the most expensive rail for your Remington 870. Mesa Tactical Shotgun Sureshell Carrier with 20 Inch Rail enables you to have different accessories such as backups sights, red dot sight or scope.
Enables you to have additional ammo on shotgun. Also works as a heatshield.
Made of aluminum.
|Mesa Tactical Shotgun Sureshell Carrier with 20 Inch Rail|
A lot of people will tell you that installing a red dot scope on a Remington 870 shotgun is not necessary, but it all depends on what type of ammunition you use. The best ammunition to use with a red dot scope is slugs because they can more accurately hit the target you’re aiming at. If you were to use birdshot or buckshot then you’d have small pellets spreading wide all over the area where you’re aiming. This would make it pointless to have a red dot scope for this reason. But a slug will go more in the general direction of where you’re aiming because it is like a bullet and not just a bunch of pellets in a shell.
Mesa Tactical Shotgun Receiver Mount Picatinny Rail
Installed rail on my Remington 870 Police. The Mesa Tactical Shotgun Receiver Mount Picatinny Rail is a 1-piece component which gives you the ability to mount red dot or optic sight on your shotgun. Also, there ghost ring sights that can be installed to help with your aim and accuracy as a shooter. The model number of this Picatinny rail is MIL-STD 1913 and it is recommended for use with three major shotgun brands: Mossberg, Benelli, and Remington.
The design of this Mesa Picatinny rail can be described as “low-profile.” It will require some time and tools to install the rail on the top of the receiver. You will need to drill and tap the receiver of your shotgun.
There is no need to be a master gunsmith to install the Mesa Picatinny rail onto the receiver of your shotgun. But basic gunsmithing knowledge required. There are 4 slotted / flathead screws which you must use to securely attach the rail to the shotgun’s receiver. These screws provide maximum holding strength.
The Mesa Picatinny rail is made from 6061-T6 aluminum, using a precision machined process. To give the rail extra strength, it is hard coat Type III anodized. This ensures the rail will withstand even tough environmental conditions or impact. If you need the rail for hunting or any kind of tactical purpose, you will appreciate this added strength given to the rail.
There are three versions of the Mesa Picatinny rail available. Each version accommodates one of the three main shotgun brands. The Mossberg 500 Receiver Rail is $35,99 and comes in all black. The Remington 870 Receiver Rail is $31.99 and comes in a Matte Black finish. The Benelli M2 Receiver Rail is $39.99 and comes in a Matte Black finish.
If you purchase any of these rails on the Brownells website, you get a “Guaranteed Forever” warranty. This allows you to return the product if you change your mind and decide you don’t like the rail after you receive it.
|Get Mesa Tactical Rail on Brownells|
Mounting an Aimpoint on a Remington 870 Shotgun
Red dot sight enables quicker sight acquisition and enable you to shoot faster. They are especially useful when shooting slugs on long distances. Aimpoint Micro can be installed on a Remington 870 shotgun, it will withstand heavy 12 gauge recoil. Aimpoint sight enables you to be quicker and more accurate.
Aimpoint is one of the best sights but it is also pretty expensive. It is used by Military and Law Enforcement and it is one of the best and the most reliable sights you can find.
It can be mounted using Mesa Tactical saddle rail.
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You did not cover how to mount the saddle rail. You just covered the different types of mounts.
Emily, you remove the 2 trigger pins. The side saddle slips down over the top of the reciever. Then you install the trigger pins with the supplied replacement pins. The replacement pins that came with your side saddle will be longer than your factory pins to accommodate for the added width id the side saddle. .
Do these also fit the 870dm model?
Yes, they should fit.
Great write up, If i can offer my .02€ :P
I would much prefer the receiver frilled and tapped because it is much more rigid when done correctly.
Under recoil some of those aluminium clamp on picatinny rails flex (the 20″ rail would be the exception because it mounts to the barrel but that’s 20″ of DNA scraper added to your gun) They are a pain in the a$$ to have to take off and on any time you want to strip the gun for cleaning so Ive seen guys epoxy them to the receiver.
Im not sure if it happens to all models of the clamp on type but from flexing during recoil ive seen the mounting screw holes elongate requiring ever more torque to get them to hold on tight. Eventually it makes scrap of the clamp !
Have you tried any experiments with the side saddles where you remove it and then replace it to see which ones loose zero? (say you want a bead sight for bird hunting and red dot for deer while using the same barrel)
Will they work on 870 express ?