The historic Ilion, NY, plant that produced Remington firearms for decades is running again and freshly minted Remington 870 Express shotguns are arriving at FFLs this week. Many of the same experienced craftsman who helped build that legendary quality are back at their stations assembling, tuning, polishing and—more than ever before—inspecting.
Adam Ballard, RemArms director of product management, told American Rifleman on Aug. 11 there’s a heightened focus on quality control at the factory, a deliberate effort to renew brand loyalty. “I think it’s important for people to understand that we are a new company, committed to rebuilding a 200-plus-year-old brand,” he said. “We intend to set right what the old company did poorly in order to live up to the customer’s expectations of the Remington brand from 30 to 40 years ago. We have a big task ahead of us, but everyone here is committed to the brand and passionate about our products.”
That heightened focus already shows. “We address quality improvements daily,” he said. “I think it’s fair to say the first products out the door are being scrutinized more than they were before, and as time goes on, you can expect to see better and better product.”
The earliest models out the door were 870 Express versions. He admitted that, “As our component and raw material costs increase, so, too, must the price. Current 870 MSRP is $480.”
It’s not the only firearm in the works, either. “We have quite a few different configurations of 870, 1100, 700 and V3 in our production plan at the moment, with more being added as we increase capacity,” Ballard said. “The 1911 is one of the products we intend to bring back, but due to capacity and other priorities, I’m unable to say exactly when at this time.”
Remington Outdoor filed for bankruptcy in 2020 for the second time in two years. This one was different, though. The court found the corporation was insolvent and its divisions went to high bidders. The development was an unsettling one for enthusiasts of America’s oldest gunmaker and its future.
When asked if there was any financial exposure on the horizon of concern, Ballard explained in an e-mail, “When Roundhill Group acquired the ASSETS [his emphasis] of Remington Outdoor Firearms ONLY, during the Chapter 11 sale, Remington Outdoor—the old Remington—retained all liabilities, including legal claims…These liabilities remained in the estate of Remington Outdoor. The estate made a settlement with the insurance companies and now it appears the insurance companies are controlling the claims.”