ArmscorRock Island Armory has introduced the modernized version of the VR60 with the new VR80.  The new VR80 is an AR-styled 12 gauge.

A  magazine fed beast that looks beautiful right out of the box but was made to be customizable – just like your favorite AR15, the VR80 is sure to please you.

The Armscor  RIA VR80 weighs in at 8.27 pounds (or 9.03lbs loaded with the 5-round magazine) and has an overall length of 40 inches (20” barrel).  The VR80 has a black anodized finish.


The customizable controls on the VR80 make it easy to run for both lefties and righties. The real beauty of this beast is the buffer bolt system that allows you to tame the recoil.

The upper and lower receivers are 7075 T6 aluminum and features a 12 o’clock picatinny rail along with a threaded and fluted barrel shroud.  The design of the shroud helped tame the heat generated when I pumped over a 150-rounds through it in a short time frame.

The VR80: A modern AR-Patterned Box-Fed Shotgun

Box Magazines

The VR80 comes standard with two 5-round box magazines.  The 5-round magazines worked flawlessly.  I also had a 9 round after-market magazine and the VR80 ran from that just as well.

While the magazines weren’t a drop-free like I’m used to on my AR’s, they easily inserted and latched without effort.  I preferred the 9-round magazine. The 19-round magazine wasn’t tested by us.  The 19-rounder looks fun but not very maneuverable or aesthetically appealing to me.

The magazines for the VR80 are backward compatible with magazines for the VR60.  I bet there will be more options on the market soon as popularity for this shotgun increases.

Looking at the VR80 you’ll see the obvious use of the modern AR-15 structure and ergonomics.  The stock and grip that the VR80 comes with works well.  I’m anxious to install an aftermarket stock and pistol grip on it to see how the looks and comfort changes.  The equipped stock is a patent-pending thumb-hole buffer tube buttstock.  OEM works great but I like adjustable stocks and to personalize my firearms.

The VR80: A modern AR-Patterned Box-Fed Shotgun

Not Your Grandfather’s Shotgun

The VR80 is not a traditional shotgun.  The VR80 is a gas operated 12 gauge with an easy to operate reciprocating charging handle.  One of my favorite features of the charging handle design is the ability to quickly and without tools change the charging handle from one side to the other.

New in the box the VR80 comes with two separate gas rings; one for heavy and one for lighter loads. The VR80 is chambered for 2 ¾” and 3” shells and has no problems pumping them out.

Three different choke systems that are easily changed out using the including wrench are included with the VR80.   Researching online I found many forums saying that the chokes from a Benelli will fit the VR80 as well.

The VR80: A modern AR-Patterned Box-Fed Shotgun

The VR80 Semi-Automatic Shotgun is, “A lean, mean customizable machine.”

I was able to connect with Crimson Trace and they provided me a CMR-201 Rail Master for test and evaluation.  I installed the CMR-201 on the VR80 and ran it during my testing of the shotgun.  I was impressed that the little laser could handle the shotgun.  The CMR-201 blended in with the VR80 flawlessly and added an additional layer of functionality and cool.

The VR80: A modern AR-Patterned Box-Fed Shotgun

The CMR-201 laser sight from Crimson Trace is a great option for those looking for a Universal Red Laser Sight.  It is a powerful little laser solution for rail-equipped firearms.  You can find the CMR-201 directly through Crimson Trace or through one of their many online retailers or Local Authorized Dealers.

Crimson Trace is currently offering a free CMR-201 Rail Master when you purchase a Crimson Trace laser sight, electronic sight, or riflescope from them, (good through February 28, 2019.) The CMR-201 Rail Master MSRP is $159.00.

A new take on the shotgun using the AR modularity


After putting the VR80 through the paces on the range, I brought it inside and outfitted it with an aftermarket stock from Adaptive Tactical  and a grip I had from MagPul.

The VR80: A modern AR-Patterned Box-Fed Shotgun

Adaptive Tactical is known for performance shooting gear and their EX Performance Adjustable Stock is great quality.

The VR80: A modern AR-Patterned Box-Fed Shotgun

With very little effort I was able to remove the existing grip and stock as one piece.  I slid the Adaptive Tactical stock on and it looked great.  With a single screw, I threaded the MagPul grip on and I was in business.

The VR80: A modern AR-Patterned Box-Fed Shotgun

The stock from Adaptive Tactical provided an increased level of padding when shooting the 12 gauge round and improved my ability to fit the gun to the shooter’s arm length.  I can’t wait to get my hands on more Adaptive Tactical products and see how they can transform other firearms I have.

The VR80: A modern AR-Patterned Box-Fed Shotgun

The Adaptive Tactical stock MSRP’s at $49.99

I also put a Nikon red dot sight on the VR80.  The stock, grip, and red dot sight turned the VR80 into an amazing machine that I can’t wait to spend more time on!

MSRP for the VR80 is $699.00.  The VR80 is now available!