Ye Olde Tactical: A Vintage Riot Shotgun w/ Nydar 47 Optic By: Ian McCollum


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All that is tactical is not necessarily new…and this shotgun is a perfect example. It was put together by a Tucson police officer in the late 1940s or early 1950s, and has all the elements of a very modern “tactical” combat shotgun. It is a Remington Model 11 semiauto shotgun (a licensed copy of the Browning Auto-5). It is fitted with a Parsons 2-round magazine extension (for a total of 7+1 capacity), a barrel from a Remington 11R (20″ cylinder choke) and a Nydar Model 47 reflex sight.

That Nydar sight is a really cool example of an early optical sight, developed form aircraft gunnery sights used during World War Two. It uses no batteries, and reflects an aiming circle into a large front lens. By modern standards it is a pretty dim reticle, but it was absolutely state of the art in the late 1940s, and allowed the same sort of rapid both-eyes-open shooting that modern red dot sights do.

Thanks to Bear Arms in Scottsdale AZ for access to this very cool shotgun!