I am a huge Remington 870 fan/fanatic. I will not apologize for that. Most of my shotguns are 870 Tacticals in some form or another. It’s a weapon that goes from concept to finished product execution, very well. No, it’s not perfect. But it’s very good. Almost excellent in fact.
Yet take that same gun and simply make it Semi-Auto… as in the 1100… and the gun somehow loses something. The 1187 is a bit better… but still. It’s just not right. When we have other Automatics out on the market, the Self-Loading Remingtons just fall short. I don’t know anyone who actually has a Benelli Super Black Eagle II and says “Naw, I like my 1100 better.” That guy is just not there… or he is being dishonest with himself.
Now let’s look at Remington’s latest and greatest… the Versa Max. It’s a good shotgun. It’s gas system is fairly clever. At if it had come out 10 years ago, it would have been crowned Best in Class. Unfortunately Benelli came out with their Vinci and Super Vinci, and Browning has their Maxus. Compared to the Maxus, the Versa Max is like a 73 year old Jane Fonda. Appealing to a few, but well past it’s prime for someone who just isn’t that popular or worthy of praise. Okay, that’s harsh. But true. The Versa Max feels too heavy. It also feels slow. And the stock? I tell you what, I’d rather have an 1187 than a Versa Max just because of the stock. It looks and feels cheap. Yet the Versa Max isn’t a cheap gun. It’s priced in league with the Maxus, which cycles fast, handles fast, and feels good in the hand. You would have to be a complete nutter, or an ex-pro-footballer with a sponsorship to handle a Browning Maxus and say “No, I’d rather have that brand new 10 year old Remington gun.” Seriously, unless you are Remington Freak… and every gun company has their bevets… just buy the 1100 and you’ll not miss a thing and pay only half the price for an overweight semi-auto 12 gauge.