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  #1  
Old 09-07-2003, 11:28 AM
Tomac Tomac is offline
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Range Report: Norinco's 870 Clone, the Model 982




First Impressions: When I first saw the Norinco 982 from a short distance I thought it was a version of the 870 I hadn't seen before (and an ugly one at that!). I handled it a bit and it certainly looked/felt like an 18.5" bbl 870 (if a bit crude). The black composite stocks felt and fit well and the ghost ring sights lined up nicely. I don't know what kind of finish it has but it's a durable-looking flat black. A few tool marks are evident but for my purposes that's inconsequential compared to reliability/durability. I was looking for a "beater" budget home defense shotgun anyway and this looked to fit the bill, especially since the 982 is supposedly 95%+ interchangeable with factory 870 parts/accessories.

Shotgun: Norinco 982 w/18.5"bbl & ghost ring sights
Mods: None except to remove the mag tube block so I could use the full 5+1 capacity.
Ammo: 50rds of heavy 7-1/2 field loads (I'd originally planned on 100rds of field loads plus some 00buck & slugs but I forgot the 00 & slugs and a crowded range this morning limited me to 50rds fired).

Initial complaints: The supplied manual is pretty much worthless for disassembly/cleaning/maintenance. The factory 870 manual downloaded from Remington's website works just fine. The factory follower & mag tube spring seem a little light & fragile and the mag tube has the 2 dimples that prevent simple use of mag tube extensions (why in the world they decided to copy that feature I'll never know).

Testing: I shot the 982 right from the box with no cleaning/lubing except for what it came with. I fired the first 25 rds fairly slowly to acquaint myself with the handling characteristics and the last 25rds rapid fire, as fast as I could load and work the action. Targets were bowling pins at 10m-15m plus a dirt berm for crude accuracy/pattern testing.

Reliability: All 50rds fed, loaded, fired & extracted with no problems whatsoever. The action (while not slick) was surprisingly smooth for new and just out of the box.

Accuracy: At 15m the ghost ring sights appear to be dead on, I had no trouble downing bowling pins as quick as I could work the action. While a standard bead is a bit faster for me for fast close-in work the ghost ring sights allow for much better precision. My next range trip I'll shoot slugs at 50m from a rest to more accurately test accuracy/sights and pattern test 00 as well.

Handling: The 982 presented & aimed well, coming up naturally and on target. I find the lighter/shorter 982 is faster on target than the Mossy 590.

Recoil: I shot with only a t-shirt between myself and the 982 so as to more accurately judge perceived recoil. Recoil seemed unusually stout with field loads, especially when compared to the 20" Mossberg 590. I didn't think the slightly lighter weight of the 982 fully accounted for the perceived increase so I examined the 982's factory recoil pad. Examination revealed a recoil pad that's extremely hard, thus not soaking up as much recoil as it might.

Current complaints: Except for the too-hard recoil pad & mag tube dimples I have no complaints so far.

Future mods: Since the 982 already has a capacity of 5+1 (1 more than the standard 870) there's only enough room for a single rd extension ($45 from Wilson) so I don't think I'll be going to all the work (removing the mag tube dimples) and expense to add a single rd. Instead I'm adding a 4rd Sidesaddle (the 6rd Sidesaddle would require modifying the forend), a dab of International Orange on the front sight post for contrast, a Wilson heavy-duty mag tube spring & follower and maybe an inexpensive buttstock ammo holder. Total cost is still less than $200.
Possible mods: A better recoil pad (I'm not looking forward to heavy 00 & slugs through this gun!) & sling swivels. However, neither are required for a basic no-frill budget home defense shotgun. A Surefire tactical forend light would be great but costs as much as the 982 w/mods!

Conclusion: This was an extremely limited test and is by no means conclusive as to the long-term durability/reliability of the 982. However, so far the results are very promising and most parts/spring issues can probably be solved w/factory 870 replacements. If you don't mind "ugly-but-gets-the-job-done" functionality at a real budget price then check out a 982 while they're still available (remember GWB's import ban on Norinco products).
Tomac
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Old 09-07-2003, 12:06 PM
JRJ JRJ is offline
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Would a magazine extension work on the Norinco? I am a capacity junkie when it comes to shotguns, and I NEED 7+1 at the minimum. Thanks for the report, I would like to shoot one and see if it would be a viable replacement for my 500.
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Old 09-07-2003, 12:14 PM
Tomac Tomac is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by JRJ
Would a magazine extension work on the Norinco? I am a capacity junkie when it comes to shotguns, and I NEED 7+1 at the minimum. Thanks for the report, I would like to shoot one and see if it would be a viable replacement for my 500.
I've been told a number of times that standard 870 mag tube extensions will fit the Norinco w/o problems *except* that since the Norinco is 5+1 out of the box instead of the 870's 4+1 you'll need a mag tube spring that's 1 greater than the tube extension (ex: the 870 7-shot mag tube extension is really an 8-shot on the Norinco so you'd need the 8-shot spring for the 7-shot extension on the Norinco). Any extension on the Norinco that's greater than +1 will extend past the bbl. Finally, you have to get rid of those stupid mag tube dimples! HTH...
Tomac
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Old 09-07-2003, 12:19 PM
JRJ JRJ is offline
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That shouldn't be a problem a dremel or a file........
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  #5  
Old 09-07-2003, 12:23 PM
Tomac Tomac is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2003
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Quote:
Originally posted by JRJ
That shouldn't be a problem a dremel or a file........
If you go that route with a 982 then please post your efforts/results for the rest of us? Thx!...
Tomac
PS- With an internet price of $155 how can you go wrong?: http://www.azweapons.com/Special2MAIN.html
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