THe M870 is a pump-action, 12-gauge shotgun in use throughout the US military. It is the military version of the Remington 870 shotgun and comes in a wide range of configurations of different barrel lengths, stocks and manufacturing materials.
M870 shotguns have been used by US Special Operations Forces (SOF) for decades. M870s have been by SEAL boarding teams. Division Recon Marines took them with them when they spearheaded the invasion of Iraq in 2003. When SOF teams fight in urban environments, shotguns, such as the M870, are ideal when used for close quarters battle (CQB). Counter-terrorism teams such as Delta Force assaulters use the M870 as a breaching shotgun. In this configuration, the M870, typically with a 10 inch barrel and with stock removed, is loaded with special breaching rounds which are used to shoot away door hinges and locks.
M870 MCS Specifications
M870 - Images and Further Info
The most recent variant of the M870 in use in the US military is the M870 Modular Combat Shotgun (MCS). The MCS kit features a receiver and magazine tube, with several attachable components such as barrels (10", 14", 18"), stocks and pistol grips. The MCS features a rail system for mounting optics, fore grips and lights.
US DoD photo
The KAC M870p 'Masterkey' system is a cut-down Remington 870 fitted below a M16 or M4, in the manner of a M203 grenade launcher. The Masterkey has a 3+1 shell capacity and a barrel length of 9.5 inches.
photo : Knight's Armament
A US Navy SEAL (early 1990s) armed with a Remington 870 during training.
US DoD photo
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