By: Friedrich Seiltgen
Copyright © 2022
During the mid-1960s, the war in Vietnam continued to escalate and the U.S. military was continuously looking for weapons to make U.S. soldiers more effective killing machines.
At the request of the U.S. Navy, work began on a fully automatic shotgun for use by their SEAL teams. The finished creation was the Model 7188. The gun is based on the Remington 1100 semi-automatic shotgun
The Remington 7188 was developed by the Frankford arsenal and Remington in the mid-60s under a project called unconventional war devices and techniques that project provided special weapons and devices for Special Forces and SEAL units.
The Remington model 7188 made its debut in 1967. Only a handful were produced. It was equipped with a perforated barrel shroud, bayonet lug, and a full auto selector switch behind the trigger. In full-automatic mode, the 7188 had a cyclic rate of fire at 420 rounds per minute.
While the 7188 was certainly a devastating weapon it had one big flaw that made it unsuitable for service in Vietnam. It was very susceptible to dirt and fouling. Not something you need in that environment. Another issue was, while it was certainly a devastating weapon, at 420 rounds a minute, 7 rounds go pretty fast, and then you have an empty magazine.
Legend has it that 7188 was chosen as the model number simply due to the fact that the 1100 model number was already roll marked onto the solid billet receiver before any machining was done. Because any attempt to change the roll mark on the hollowed-out, machined receiver using the same process would result in damage, the model number 1100 had to be altered to read 7188 by hand engraving to avoid damage.
Type: Gas Operated, Select Fire Shotgun
Caliber: 12 Gauge
Magazine capacity: 7 Rounds
Cyclic Rate: 480 Rounds per minute
Sights: Front Sight – Blade, Rear Sight – Adjustable with V-Notch
Barrel Length: 24.24 Inches
Overall Length:40.94 Inches
Weight: 8 pounds 8 Ounces
After a short period of use, the 7188s were converted back to semi-automatic but still had the selector switch. But as with almost all special projects like this, designs were used for other future weapon designs.
That’s all for now folks! Please keep sending in your questions, tips, and article ideas. And as always – “Let’s Be Careful Out There.”
Friedrich Seiltgen is a retired Master Police Officer with 20 years of service with the Orlando Police Department. He conducts training in Lone Wolf Terrorism, Firearms, and Active Shooter Response. His writing has appeared in RECOIL, FloridaJolt.com, Soldier of Fortune, The Counter Terrorist Magazine, American Thinker, Homeland Security Today, and The Journal of Counterterrorism & Homeland Security International. Contact him at [email protected].