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Regular readers will recall the Remington R51 debacle. TTAG was well up for the Pederson action pistol when it made its debut. We were excited by its size, shape beauty and caliber. And then we got ahold of one. Nick’s one-star review told the tale: “It’s a great concept, but there are serious design flaws that shouldn’t be acceptable in a modern firearm.” So serious, in fact, Remington recalled the pistol.

Big Green gave R51 owners the option to wait for replacement, getting an R1 1911 instead, or a full refund. Those who chose to return their R51’s and wait for the reworked version are getting additional magazines and a Pelican case with their replacement pistol (which are being shipped before dealers and wholesalers get them). We have one on the way and will review it ASAP

Meanwhile, here’s the letter to owners of the previous model, forced to surrender their guns for a replacement.

Dear Valued Remington Customer,

We sincerely thank you for your patience as we finalized the development and testing of the Remington R51 pistol. The steps taken within our quality and manufacturing processes have given us the confidence to reintroduce the R51 to the market. We have prioritized our launch to give you the opportunity to receive your replacement firearm prior to a full commercial reintroduction. As a token of our appreciation, we are including a custom Pelican hard pistol case and two extra magazines with your new R51 subcompact pistol. We will also reimburse you for the transfer fee charged by your FFL dealer. Your new Remington R51 subcompact pistol is ready for delivery and can be shipped to a licensed firearms dealer of your choice.

In order for you to receive your new R51, please call us at 800-243-9700 (M-F 9m-5pm EST) with your dealer’s name and phone number. If you prefer, you may send us your name, contact information, dealer name, and dealer contact information via fax (336-548-7801), email ([email protected]) or mail (P.O Box 700, Madison NC 27025). In addition, we have assigned a consumer service representative to follow up with you throughout this process. All replacement firearms need to be sent to a licensed dealer with a valid FFL (Federal Firearms License) on file with us. To assist in speeding up the turnaround time, if you have your dealer’s FFL available, please include it, if not, we will contact your dealer to obtain a copy of the FFL on your behalf.

We have gone to great lengths to return the R51 to the marketplace, and we deeply appreciate your patience and support as we reintroduce this iconic firearm.

Remington Arms Company, LLC

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  1. Valued Remington Customer My Fat Ass. If they’d valued their customers this dreck would have never made it out of the factory.

    • Fine, don’t buy it and go away. Your negativity is of no value to anyone. I think it’s really a nice looking pistol. A thorough and complete review will tell the true tale without emotional commentary.

        • Jwm is anything it negative. It’s a valid point. Remington has gone downhill. I bought an 870 recently that wouldn’t even feed 2 rounds before malfunctioning.

          Who cares how it looks, what matters is function.

        • In recent memory every person I know, every one of them, that has bought a new Remington product has regretted it.

        • “jwm says:
          June 25, 2016 at 23:37

          In recent memory every person I know, every one of them, that has bought a new Remington product has regretted it.”

          To be fair JWM I have purchased two Remington products – a 750 Woodsmaster in 30-06 and an R1.

          The 750 worked ok for a while, maybe 40 or 50 rounds in total were fired. It had problems feeding and ejecting but the action did function. Then when my daughter was firing it one day it malfunctioned and when we took off the handguard to have a look there was a gas block (this is basically a semi version of the 700) that had just plain fallen off of the barrel where is was spot welded in place – two tiny little spot welds.

          I was not happy with this in the least and called Remington about it and their customer service people were actually very good to deal with and they went ahead and refunded my money with little argument.

          So, not happy with the gun – but have to be honest, the company handled this very well.

          The R1 1911 is a completely different story. Cannot say anything bad about this gun. I love it, looks great, functions great, workmanship is great. I would buy another one in a second. Of course, I don’t need another one.

          So I don’t think I will buy another Rem product given my experience with the 750, but nothing is ever simple you know, I have to give credit where credit is due.

        • you haven’t seen or touched or used this firearm yet not only have you drawn your own conclusion but feel so strongly about it that you MUST push it upon others. That’s what the anti-gunners do, speak as if all of the fact align with them and everyone else they know. Is it so unreasonable to at least wait for some semblance of a real evaluation or review has been done? At least couch your statement in possibility or probability, otherwise your just another bloviator.

        • Mr. 308. You’re batting .500 on new Remington products. Which is better than the folks I know are doing. Shame, really. The Remington of my youth was something to brag on.

          Ned. Check out the thread below. I seem to be not the only one here. I am speaking from experience with recent Remington products.

  2. They at least seem to be making an effort to treat the customer right after a couple years of being down a couple hundred bucks by giving them the pelican case, extra magazines, and even paying for the transfer fee. However I don’t understand how these got off the assembly line so bad and what to so long to fix it. If I owned a gun manufacturer I would personally test the first batch of a brand new gun off the assembly line to make sure it worked. At least someone should have instead of just assuming it went right. It shows a lot for how bad their QC was that at least a couple of these guns weren’t tested before being sent out.

    • I was in the market for a small single-stack 9mm when these were first introduced and am certainly glad that I waited for reviews of production models (I bought a Shield instead).

      Fast forward a couple of years to when I was shopping for a small .380 pocket stuffer to replace my ancient P3AT. I liked the RM380 but given the R51 debacle and other Remington Outdoors quality issues I had plenty of doubts. By then Remington had ‘fessed up to their problems and pledged to thoroughly test production spec guns before even announcing them. The reviews confirmed that the RMs were good to go, and I bought one. So far I have about 400 trouble free rounds through it.

      Did R51 owners get hosed? Yes. But I am cautiously optimistic that Remington has seen the error of their ways, and I want them to succeed. We need a strong industry making quality products. I really hope they continue to introduce glitch free new models and fix the wreckage of their legacy products; otherwise, they won’t survive.

      • “Did R51 owners get hosed? Yes. But I am cautiously optimistic that Remington has seen the error of their ways,”


        I’ll believe it when a reviewer I trust (TTAG-approved will be fine…) deems it to be so.

        Manufacturing and selling a gun that can be assembled from a field-stripped condition WRONG with *zero* indication it was assembled wrong until the poor bastard that tries to fire it THEN discovers it was assembled wrong is beyond egregious malpractice in my non-humble opinion.

        Whoever in that company that gave the go-ahead to ship that gun ought to be forced to CRUDE SLUR DELETED with Rosie O’Donald until they expire…

        • The ‘CRUDE SLUR DELETED with Rosie o donnel ‘ is funnier than what was initially written there initially. My imagination is killing me with laughter.

    • From what I’ve read elsewhere, it took so long because they moved their entire manufacturing of their pistol from their Charlotte facility to the Huntsville one. Guess it was an issue of ego combined with poor QC at that plant?

      • QC was just half of what was wrong with that… ‘thing’. But it was a solid 50 percent of it.

        The design *itself* was crap. The gun could be field-stripped and then re-assembled INCORRECTLY with no indication it was done wrong after it was re-assembled.

        The poor SOB would only find out it was done wrong when he pulled the trigger and heard ‘click’ instead of *BOOM*.

        That is making and selling a product that can get someone KILLED, full-stop.

        Do you seriously consider that acceptable from a gunmaker?

        (Edit – I no way whatsoever would I be interested in reviewing the R51. I could not possibly be un-biased in the review. I DESPISE Remington for knowingly selling that… thing.)

    • They had testing/production failure that allowed a flawed product to move forward with a major defect. Fixing the problem with production versions turned out to be difficult and probably very expensive.

    • To whom it may concern. I have had no experience yet with my newly purchased R51, However, my mod 700,
      my mod 7400, and my 1911 R1 are great. I gave the R1 to my grandson for his work pistol. Would not have done\
      that with a piece of trash. Oh, I forgot my 64 year old Mod 121 .22 cal fieldmaster, still goes bang every time.

  3. Would’ve been better just canning the R51 project, cutting any losses, and moving on.
    The pistol market has moved on, especially after the Glock 43 was released last year.

      • Ditto, we are interested in it and the f it proves worthy, will be in the market.

        My wife finds it pretty which, in girl-talk means she’d buy it.

      • Still interested in it? Be sure to check for the side-to-side play in the trigger. I was astonished to see the reviews discussing the looseness of the trigger, as if it was dangling.

    • Glock should have moved on after Springfield introduced the XD/s. You don’t have to go out and get new sights and new trigger to replace the crap they put on it. FIFY.

      • Own both Glocks and XDs. Never had to call the factory on a Glock problem, but have had to on an XD. My XD now resides in the safe while I still carry the same Glock every day that I have carried since 2003 and put several thousand rounds through.

        Do I still like XD’s . . . of course! They’re great guns, but Glocks . . . well, they work. Every time. Under any conditions.

        • Tdiinva basically has two posts. Whenever there is a 1911 article, he posts about how it sucks and isn’t as great a gun and value as his Springfield 1911. Whenever there is a Glock article or reference, he posts how they suck and aren’t as good a gun or value as his XD.
          I’m starting to think he’s a shill for Springfield. You’ve made your point a thousand times, you can stop now.

          • Ahh, thanks. Makes sense now.

            Each to his own and i won’t dis anyone fro their preferences.

        • Jason, if there wasn’t a reference to a late to the party Glock 43 I would have remained silent.

      • Further thoughts for Jason. So someone who makes the point that the handgun world begins and ends with Glock is just speaking truth but someone who points out that Springfield makes a better product and was first to the market with a single stack carry gun is a shill for Springfield? You need to look in the mirror to see someone who exhibits shill-like behavior. I have pointed out on many occasions that there are a lot products that do Glock better than Glock that aren’t named Springfield. I even made a favorable reference to a Glock product while actually offering and opinion on why the R51 doesn’t have a niche. I even think the G43 is superior to an R51. We all have our standards of comparison. Mine happens to be happens to be Springfield products because I have that they best fit my modern pistols needs. Someone else might use FN, Ruger, Walters or S&W. Not everyone worships Gaston Glock..

    • Count me in the “still interested” category too. I really wanted the R51 to be a success and as long as they’ve worked the bugs out and TTAG gives it their stamp of approval, there may be one in my Christmas stocking…

  4. The 51 serves no real purpose. It is bigger than a double stacked G26. If I remember correctly, it is as big as XD/M compact.

    • Some people conceal carry Glock 19s and Full-size 1911s. The only measure of the worth of a concealed carry firearm isn’t its size-to-caliber ratio,

      I love the lines of the R51, and if it were reliable, I’d like to have one. But … given the terrible debacle the original release was, I’m going to be a very slow adopter, as I imagine many others will, which could kill the project.

      • I am one of those people who carries a full sized pistol. The R51 offers nothing for its size, it is not competing with 1911 or a G19. It is competing with small concealable pistols like the XD/s or LC9.

        • It’s actually very slightly narrower than a G43 (1″ width vs. 1.02), so it’s right in there with other single stack 9 widths, it’s about .3″ longer (which isn’t a huge issue if you carry IWB — the width is the main thing) and it has a full-size grip. Some people like full-size grips. It has an alloy frame, and, ditto, some people like alloy frames.

          If it works right, it’s supposed to be very shootable.

          It’s actually nowhere near the bulk of real full-size pistols or even double-stack compacts, but might be as shootable as a full-size.

        • It is slightly smaller than an XD/m compact and by smaller we are talking about a little more than .1 of an inch in height and length. It is 6 oz lighter empty. But once again that is pocket change and the extra weight soaks up recoil. The XD/s is smaller all the way around.

        • Because the design doesn’t use a guide rod, the bore axis is very, very low. Look at the positioning of the trigger relative to the barrel compared to LC9s, XDs and Glocks. That could make a big difference in how the recoil feels and how much the muzzle flips.

          I also think that the lines are much sleeker and more rounded, which might make it more comfortable to carry.

          I’d just like to try one out if they end up being reliable, is all I’m saying.

  5. @RF — are we going to have a R51 Review 2.0 or are you guys still persona non grata with Remington?

    • +1. Despite all the crap Big Green threw at Nick et al., it turned out that Leghorn and other truly independent reviewers were right all along. Any apology or recognition that Remmy and their flacks were out of line in their responses to those negative, but utterly accurate, reviews? Not that I’ve heard of.

      The R51 debacle should be Exhibit A on why gun mags are the last place you should go for an accurate review.

    • RF did write “we’ll review it asap” in the post. My guess is it won’t come from Big Green even if they offer, but will be borrowed or purchased through normal market channels.

      • …And that’s the way mass-market guns should be reviewed.

        I can understand big-money bespoke-type guns being hand picked for review, like *cough* Cabot, and because it was bespoke, alarmed me even more when it got indigestion on off-the-shelf SAAMI-spec gun munchies.

        This mass-market Remington damn sure had better be immune from malfunction after re-assembly from standard field-strip condition.

        Unlike the abortion they shipped last time…

  6. My dad bought one of these and when it worked it was a nice little gun. but it didnt work very often he sent it back, fast forward a year and still nothing. they FINALLY offerd to refund it after 18 months, he has an LCS9 pro and likes it even better.

  7. Id like to regain my trust in Remington. I hope this pistol will get some of it back to those who stuck out the recall.
    Glocks……..aint for everyone. Me included. Never owned one never will.
    I passed up on a few of Remingtons newer 1911 offerings in general not having much faith in their current products.
    I again hope for Remingtons sake. This reissue rebuilds some of the lost trust in others and maybe in me too.

  8. I like the look of the R51, and I guarantee I would have bought one if the frame was alloy or steel.

  9. Dear Remington Customer:

    We are so very sorry that we sold you that old piece of crap. Please accept this new piece of crap with our thanks. We’ve upgraded it with our famous X-Mark Pro® trigger, the one that you don’t even need to press!


    Dan Quayle
    Chairman, Global Investments
    Cerberus Capital Management.

      • Yeah, great, because for whatever flaws they had (and yes I admit fully that they had them), old Mr. Bush and Dan Quayle still would have done a better job than Billy Cigar Saxaphone and his harpie wife who continue to plague us today.

  10. Maybe they’re trying to save a sinking ship. It’s not like there isn’t a ton of small 9’s that actually WORK. No-this will be bought by the gullible. Have fun…

  11. The one selling point for this pistol is probably the ease with which the slide can be opened compared to other 9mm subcompacts. Other than that the Shield, XDs, LC9s seem to have it covered. Not a big selling point once you learn how to properly lock a slide back.

  12. If the fixed version becomes a success and an instant classic, I’ll be impressed and maybe buy one!

    But let’s be real, that isn’t going to happen.

  13. —bought a low priced sub compact 9mm—sccy–no safety, 2 mags–black Friday price of $200—–cleaned it, read the forums, polished it good—feeds most everything, don’t use steel case—but alum. works—–only problem is the short 95 grain—guess I was lucky after reading a lot of bad reviews—-shoot it well, but I like DA only—-for the price a great xmas present—–fired over 1200 rounds still no real problem—–how does it compare to the original Remington?—price wise, etc——

  14. Yeah, no. Remington knowingly entered full production on a borderline broken gun for the concealed carry market. They KNEW it didn’t work, and yet they were still happy to sell it to folks who would ostensibly be entrusting their lives to it. FUCK Remington. They have no integrity and should be ostracized entirely from the gun community. Anyone who buys a gun from them after the R51 debacle is a fool, ESPECIALLY if it’s a gun for personal protection.

  15. “We have gone to great lengths to return the R51 to the marketplace…””

    They went trough all this trouble trying to see if they could without ever stopping to ask if they even should.

  16. We bought one right when they came out. Sent it back to Remington before we actually fired a round through it when they were claiming they would get it fixed and send the pistol back within a couple months. Then a couple months turned into a couple more months. Then it was first quarter of 2015. When at the end of March of 2015 Remington offered to simply give us an R1 and never get the R51 back we jumped at the chance. At that point we had already bought an LC9 for the wife anyway.

    The site on the R1 needed work as it point of impact was consistently 5 inches low at 15 yards, so it’s gone now as well. The bad experience with the R51 recall gave me ZERO confidence in Remington so when it was time to send my Model 700 in for the recall on it, I sold that too. The fact that Remington was working on bringing a .380 pistol to market while they should have been fixing R51s was the last straw and I’m done with those idiots.

    Or was, they sent us that letter a couple days ago saying they would send us an R51 if we gave them our dealer info, which we did. So maybe we’ll finally get the pistol we wanted two years ago after all?

  17. Well, I’m actually interested to see if it will work. I have a recalled LTR 700 that has a new Timney trigger. I believe my Marlin .45-70 XLR is post freedom group as well, and it works fine. There are some rough spots and a bit of wood to metal mismatch, but Remington and Freedom Group aren’t the only companies out there that are putting cheap feeling and performing guns out there.

    The Henry lever design is built better, but I want the Marlin side loading gate.

    Part of the problem is market-driven. Americans want cheep guns instead of good ones. I’m not defending Remington’s gross mistakes, just making observations. I’m glad TTAG had the integrity to diagnose the problem, and the gun mags clearly didn’t.

  18. I like Remington. They make excellent rifles and shotguns. But they tried to jump into a market they are not ready for. They are not noted as major handgun manufacturers; they make long guns.

    You should always go with your strengths. Some companies like Glock and S&W focus on handguns and don’t really do rifles. Other companies like Springfield, Ruger and Colt (yeah I know, bankruptcy and high costs but great guns) are good at both. But companies like Remington and Winchester should stick with their strong suite and not try to go for the golden ring in areas where they just do not have the experience or capacity to push into markets where they are outclassed by other manufacturers. Now, after this debacle, Remington is going to be known for a great failure not a great success . . . and that’s too bad because in their field of long guns, they are among the top manufacturers.

  19. Why not bring back the original U.S. Navy contract version?
    It was a .45 ACP with the Pedersen lock.

  20. I’d be interested to note if the grip is big enough to get all three fingers on. I noticed a Makarov is the same size as many of these “subcompacts” but you can get all the fingers on the grip, because a finger’s width of the height of the pistol is NOT taken up by the guide rod and dust cover. Maybe the R51 would be similar.

    That’s assuming it’s not still a complete piece of crap.

  21. If you felt your Taurus, Caracal, KelTec and SCCY was not enough of a POS, Remington has something for you.

  22. Remington definitely stepped on their dick with this one. However, I REALLY like the esthetics of this pistol…it is like the exact opposite of my Walther PPS M1 (sweet shooter, but ugly as sin), and why I wish Bersa would have made their 9mm Thunder look like the .380 version.
    So, if the post-recall version is a flawlessly functioning reincarnation, I may add one to my collection…just because. But it will NOT be my primary defense / conceal carry weapon.

  23. . I help run a game fansite as a side job, and while there are plenty of typical CS kiddies, we also have a number of serious gun nuts and military guys. From time to time we even manage to educate and convert gamers into real gun owners.As for preparing anyone for the zombie apocalypse, playing through Left4Dead 2 on realism + expert mode can't hurt. :p

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