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View Full Version : 870 rifled barrel for HD


doctori
March 26, 2010, 10:11 AM
I have a Remington 870 with a rifled barrel that I use for deer hunting. Can I shoot 00 buckshot through it for HD or would I be better off buying a tactical shotgun? or trying to find a smooth bore barrel? :confused:

Uncle Ben
March 26, 2010, 10:34 AM
From what I have heard (no personal experience) the pattern will "donut" pretty badly when you shoot buck out of a rifled shotgun barrel....meaning that it will spread out in a circular patter with the center of the pattern being empty, which means no shot hits the center of the target/aimed area.

You can just buy a smooth bore (18" long) barrel for it and have that barrel on the shotgun while it is loaded for self defense at home, then put your rifled barrel on it when you go out hunting. If you do buy a new barrel I'd recommend getting one with rifled sights on it.

Changing barrels on the 870 is very quick and easy to do, so the option is well worth it. Of course if you are looking for a reason to buy a whole new shotgun, then by all means have at it :D

zippy13
March 26, 2010, 10:36 AM
You'd be better off with a smooth bore barrel. Rifled shotgun barrels are designed to shoot sabot slugs, not shot.

Willie Lowman
March 26, 2010, 10:52 AM
Yes you can shoot buckshot from your rifled barrel. Is a smooth bore better? Yes.

For most HD distances you probably won't see to many negative effects from the rifled barrel. Get a few boxes of 00 and go try it at 10 yards or so before you drop the $ for another barrel.

Edward429451
March 26, 2010, 11:04 AM
How could it throw a bad pattern at in the house distances?

greyson97
March 26, 2010, 12:18 PM
870 smooth bore barrels are, very very easy to find. and cheap

did I mention how easy they are to find and how cheap they are?

cause they are

jmr40
March 26, 2010, 01:18 PM
Shoot it and see how it works.

rantingredneck
March 26, 2010, 01:25 PM
Shoot it and see how it works.

This ^.

The patterns will eventually donut, when they get out far enough. The question is, at distances found in your home will they be acceptible. Take some measurements of your home, take some cardboard and 00 to the range and do some testing.

Lavid2002
March 26, 2010, 01:28 PM
go pattern it

Lee Lapin
March 26, 2010, 01:42 PM
...and please report your results on this thread.

lpl

Vt.birdhunter
March 26, 2010, 01:55 PM
How could it throw a bad pattern at in the house distances?

Yes, its fine, inside 30 feet, you wont see significant differences between your barrel and a smoothbore.

Keep in mind, your rifled barrel is probably slightly longer than most 18.5" HD Tac barrels you find, making it less wieldy. Its also waaaaaay heavier than a HD specific barrel. If these are significant issues to you, pick up the extra barrel; besides, just think of the intimidation factor with a door breaching, crenelated strike muzzled 18" barrel;)

http://www.cheaperthandirt.com/SHT600-1.html

Lavid2002
March 26, 2010, 01:56 PM
with pix!

doctori
March 26, 2010, 02:17 PM
Thank you all for the great advice! We all know that times are tough but I would really hate ruining my favorite 870. I did look at a few gun shops and they told me that the barrel would cost almost as much as a new 870 (although they did not want to trade). That seemed hard to believe :eek:

I'll do some more looking around and let you know how it turns out :)

Uncle Ben
March 26, 2010, 04:35 PM
Do some internet searches for 870 barrels only that are smooth bore. I can't imagine them being as much as the whole gun, new or used...but I have a Mossberg so I have not done any research on 870 barrels.

azsixshooter
March 26, 2010, 05:08 PM
I normally steer clear of exotic ammo in my scatterguns...00 or 000 buck or regular old pumpkin balls work great for me. HOWEVER, in this particular instance a certain type of ammo popped in my head.

If you pattern your gun with normal 00 buck or whatever you select and find that it throws a donut pattern at a range where you'd like to keep the pattern tighter you _might_ want to check out this stuff:

http://www.ammunitiontogo.com/catalog1/product_info.php/pName/9rds-12-gauge-pit-bull-buckshot-slug-dual-load-ammo/cName/12-gauge-specialtyexotic

"This is 12 Gauge Pit Bull Ammo. This ammo is loaded with a dual load. It has six 00 Buck pellets and a 3/4 Oz. slug. The buckshot shoots out first followed by the slug. This is a great choice for home protection. If the buckshot don't get them, the slug will. This is a really powerful load. It is a 2 3/4" shell and is loaded to the max load. It is safe to shoot in all 12 Gauge shotguns."

I am thinking the buckshot might donut, but when you got a slug coming hard up the middle who cares? :D

Sure it is expensive and some guys might advise against specialty ammo for a variety of reasons. But it might be just what the doctor ordered until you can afford a dedicated HD barrel. Or you might want to someday have your slug barrel pinned to the receiver and not want to swap barrels.

rantingredneck
March 26, 2010, 06:05 PM
If you search the for sale forums on the various gun boards you'll find a surplus of 870 barrels for sale for around 100.00 and some slightly less. Many of these will be 26 or 28" VR barrels, but with a little work they can be cut down to 18.5" length if you choose. Or they can be used just fine as is.

I wouldn't necessarily shop for new when it comes to replacement barrels when used can be found inexpensively.

Superhouse 15
March 26, 2010, 07:05 PM
Tried and tested here:
http://www.theboxotruth.com/docs/bot43.htm

With the easy availability and cheap price of a proper barrel, I'd pick one up. I don't really have a problem with "hunting" barrels on an HD gun, but we charge like $30 or $40 to cut one down, depending on the sight. Less pellets on target is never a good idea.

Willie Lowman
March 26, 2010, 07:34 PM
I would really hate ruining my favorite 870. Buckshot is not going to damage your slug barrel. I used to shoot buckshot, birdshot, and slugs out of a rifled barrel 20ga (because it was all I had) and there were no ill effects to the gun.

Vt.birdhunter
March 26, 2010, 07:34 PM
The 8" difference in barrel length seems like a significant factor interpreting those patterns.

RGR3/75
March 30, 2010, 03:48 AM
i don't believe your shotgun should be used for HD in my opinion. if you want to use 00buck in your house then go ahead. shoot 5 rounds into your wall and see the damage. compare that to a pistol. plus in a worse case scenario, magazines are easier to reload than a choke.

azsixshooter
March 30, 2010, 06:24 AM
The shotgun is pretty universally accepted as the ultimate home defense tool. And who fires 5 rounds of double aught buck into their wall to protect their home??? More likely you put one or two shots into a home invader's face or chest (then get the mop bucket).

There are plenty of techniques for tactical loading of a shotgun, check out a book like "The Home Defense Shotgun" by Louis Awerbuck or "Stressfire II: Advanced Shotgun Techniques" by Masaad Ayoob (I might be slightly wrong about those titles, but they are close enough to find the books I'm talking about). Or better still take a class at Gunsite Ranch or someplace similar.

Not trying to bash another member here, but anyone considering a shotgun for home defense isn't just on the right path, you are in the right camp! Don't hesitate for a heartbeat, stick with the street howitzer!

rantingredneck
March 30, 2010, 07:36 AM
The 8" difference in barrel length seems like a significant factor interpreting those patterns.

Not according to the tech guys at Remington. Nor my own indpendent pattern testing, for that matter.

Barrel length has no affect on pattern.

dabigguns357
March 30, 2010, 08:17 AM
Until recently i had nothing but a rifled slug barrel on my Mossberg and yes it was also my h/d gun.I never used buck shot,only low recoil 2 3/4 winchester slugs.I now have a 18 1/2 inch smoth bore and use buck shot,i never felt comfortable shooting anything through my rifled slug barrel.

h/d is about layers not about shotgun vs handgun.I keep a shotgun as primary and my handgun as back up.

RGR3/75
March 30, 2010, 01:16 PM
i don't care how good you are at reloading a shotgun, it will never be faster than a mag change. just think about it this way. if you're going to assault a building, what gun would you use? probably a rifle, secondary being a pistol. accurate, easy to reload, more maneuverability. you have other people to consider besides the bad guy. the shotgun is an area weapon. any family members in the immediate area? besides, even 2 rounds of whatever shotgun load you want will destroy your wall, as opposed to 2 rounds of any given pistol caliber. believe me i'm all about making shotgun soup, but i'd rather not remodel my house while i'm at it. shotguns: great weapons, i love them and you should definitely keep them in a fallback position if you wanna get crazy. but i just don't think they're very practical in a situation like that

Gunplummer
March 30, 2010, 02:23 PM
The barrel length thing was tested by the NRA years ago. They took a long barreled "goose" gun and kept cutting it off and moving the choke back. It didn't change anything. If you take a full choke barrel and cut it off to the point where it is open choke it will change. Even bird shot will have a hole in the pattern at certain ranges, but varies from barrel to barrel. You have to experiment.

rantingredneck
March 30, 2010, 05:22 PM
i don't care how good you are at reloading a shotgun, it will never be faster than a mag change.

The probability of having to reload either in defending your home is miniscule. 00 buckshot, properly applied, trumps anything fired from a handgun in terms of probability of hitting your target* under stress and in terminal effectiveness.

* note that I'm not talking about pattern here as much as the ability of most people to score hits better with a shoulder fired weapon vs. a handgun.


just think about it this way. if you're going to assault a building, what gun would you use? probably a rifle, secondary being a pistol. accurate, easy to reload, more maneuverability.

Most of us here have no intentions on doing so.


you have other people to consider besides the bad guy. the shotgun is an area weapon. any family members in the immediate area? besides, even 2 rounds of whatever shotgun load you want will destroy your wall, as opposed to 2 rounds of any given pistol caliber.

Quite frankly, statements like this lead me to believe you've never taken a shotgun and a piece of cardboard to the range to test your thesis. Just got back from there myself with a new to me police trade in wingmaster. It hadn't been patterned yet. Did that today at 10 and 25 yds. with Federal LE12700 flite control wad shells. At 10 yds the pattern looked like a slug hit. At 25 I could cover it with my hand. Reading your statement above makes me wish I hadn't tossed the paper plates I use as targets as I was leaving the gun club.

At 50-100yds, yes buckshot is an area weapon. At HD ranges, not so much......

RGR3/75
March 30, 2010, 06:39 PM
agree to disagree

rantingredneck
March 30, 2010, 07:06 PM
fair enough....

RGR3/75
March 30, 2010, 10:23 PM
what do you think about 410?

rantingredneck
March 31, 2010, 07:37 AM
Wouldn't be my first choice to defend myself, but I also wouldn't want to stand in front of it.

Buckshot loads are 3 to 5 pellets of 00 or 000 typically. Muzzle velocity in the 1100-1250 range IIRC. Kinda like getting caught with 1/2 a 12 ga pattern.

Slugs are 1/4 to 1/5 oz. So you're talking between 87.5 and 110 or so grains of lead. Velocity ranging in the 1800 fps-1900 fps range. Now that translates into somewhere in the 700 ft/lbs range of energy at point blank range.

That's all assuming a shotgun barrel and not a handgun like the Taurus Judge. That all being said, Federal has some new .410 handgun ammo out that a buddy of mine tested for pattern and penetration and I was impressed.

WW2
April 1, 2010, 03:38 PM
As a previous poster said, this patterning has been done on the "Box O' Truth". Here is the link again: http://www.theboxotruth.com/docs/bot43.htm

Of particular interest is the last picture on the first page. The pattern is 18" and basically a circle at 5 YARDS! That is only 15 feet, the distance across my living room. If I fired that pattern COM on an intruder at 5 yards in my house, I would likely have wounded an arm, shoulder, and abdomin but not hit any vitals, so the threat would still be there. With a smooth bore, the pattern is tight and would have hit vitals, stopping the threat. Also, the difference ammo makes is amazing.

I strongly recommend reading that article. You will see that at 30 feet you will likely miss completely if you fire 00 buck from a rifled barrel.

Remington barrels are under $200 and can be swapped quickly. I use a 28" Vented Rib barrel for sporting clays, and when I get home I take if off as part of my cleaning and I put the 18.5" tactical barrel in its place. The pictures below are of the same gun with only a barrel change:

28" barrel:
http://mysite.verizon.net/res8o1o8/guns/SPORT28.jpg

18.5" Barrel:
http://mysite.verizon.net/res8o1o8/guns/SPORT18.jpg

Then, a change of stock and:
http://mysite.verizon.net/res8o1o8/guns/HDSD18S.jpg

The HD shotgun ($350, bought as seen in the last picture), 28" Remington barrel with Mod Choke ($199), and standard Remington Synthetic stock ($30) cost a total of $589.