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this_is_nascar
March 22, 2011, 09:15 AM
I just picked up my 1st ever shotgun, a new Remington Model 870 Express Tactical. Its primary duty will be home-defense in a small, rancher style, home. Secondarily, I'll take it to the range (25' maximum distance in length) to shoot at some targets and get the feel of the gun.

What type of ammo do you recommend for each usage? I know the indoor range doesn't allow all types of ammo. I forget what's allowed/not allowed, so I have to give them a call today when they open.

zippy13
March 22, 2011, 10:03 AM
Greetings this is nascar, and welcome aboard.

You're in NJ, it's a gun un-friendly state like my CA. For purely political reasons, should you ever have to use your gun for HD, may I suggest you use ammo that's labeled home defense as opposed to stuff that's marked as tactical or for law enforcement.

For your range work, be sure to follow their ammo restrictions/recommendations. Hopefully you'll have some training with the same ammo that you'll use for HD.

ATW525
March 22, 2011, 10:07 AM
25' maximum distance in length

Do you mean 25 yards? 25' is rather short.

Anyways, I personally find that shooting at paper with anything but slugs gets really boring really fast, but that's just me. A lot will depend on the range rules.

For home defense there are various sizes of buckshot along with Foster type slugs. I'd stay away from birdshot, Brenneke style slugs and sabot slugs. Birdshot doesn't penetrate enough, and Brenneke and sabot slugs penetrate too much.

kx592
March 22, 2011, 10:24 AM
Run some 00bk through her, get use to the recoil, and keep some on hand for HD. Other than that the run the gun every chance you get and be very comfortable with it.

NJ resident as well, you said tactical 870? Do you have an adjustable stock and pistol grip type of deal? Re read title 13, chapter 54 if your not sure whats allowed. Better safe than sorry.

MLeake
March 22, 2011, 10:45 AM
... generally will not want you to use anything but slugs.

Friend who owned a range told me that in his experience, lighter shot had a nasty tendency to ricochet. They'd had a couple instances, luckily with no injuries, before his range put a general ban on shotguns.

Not sure if heavier buckshot would ricochet. As noted, I've only been allowed to use slugs at indoor ranges, in the few I've found that allowed shotguns (many do not).

this_is_nascar
March 22, 2011, 08:02 PM
The answer from the indoor range is that I can use only "BUCK or SLUG".

this_is_nascar
March 22, 2011, 08:05 PM
Yes, 25-yards at the indoor range. Sorry, but I can't seem to find the 'QUOTE' button.

this_is_nascar
March 22, 2011, 08:10 PM
No adjustable stock and no pistol grip. You can see it here.


http://www.remington.com/products/firearms/shotguns/model-870/model-870-express-tactical.aspx

this_is_nascar
March 22, 2011, 08:13 PM
It definately seems that SLUGS are the way to go at the range. One could argue their usefullness for home-defense over BUCK, but that's another thread.

That being said, is there any slug ammo (keeping in mind that I'm in NJ) that would not be acceptable for use? What do you folks recommend along the lines of 2 3/4" slug for the range?

Bamashooter
March 22, 2011, 10:53 PM
I have some 3.5'' 00 buck for home defense in my 870. Thats why my go to home defense gun is my .45. :D

popeyespappy
March 22, 2011, 11:17 PM
I have some 3.5'' 00 buck for home defense in my 870. Thats why my go to home defense gun is my .45. That's why I I like 2-3/4" low recoil for my HD 870. Just in case the .45 runs empty. ;)

this_is_nascar
March 23, 2011, 09:48 AM
What brand you using popeye?

ATW525
March 23, 2011, 10:11 AM
What do you folks recommend along the lines of 2 3/4" slug for the range?

I always liked Remington Slugger. I can usually find it relatively inexpensively and it's not too bad on the shoulder.

For buckshot you might want to look at Federal's Flight Control loads, as they have a reputation for extremely tight patterns.

VUPDblue
March 27, 2011, 11:09 PM
I'll second the recommendation of Federal's 00buck with Flitecontrol. Their PD132 loading (low recoil, 8 pellet) is VERY tight patterning and a very effective load.

this_is_nascar
March 29, 2011, 11:19 AM
The more I'm reading about varios ammo, the more I'm getting confused. For example, I just read this in the description of some ammo.

Designed specifically for smooth bore barrels but can also be used in rifled choke tube barrels or fully rifled barrels.


Is this something I need to be concerned over? I've read the specs that I could find about my Remington 870 Express Tactical and didn't see anything specific about the barrel.

rantingredneck
March 29, 2011, 11:30 AM
Your shotgun is a smoothbore barrel. You'll want to focus primarily on buckshot loads and if you want to shoot slugs, the cheaper "rifled" slugs of either Foster or Brenneke design will be the cheapest option and will work well from your smooth (non-rifled) barrel). Sabot slugs are meant for rifled barrels and are quite spendy. Some as much as 2 to 3 dollars per shell.

For buckshot, I'll chime in as a proponent of the Federal Flite Control or Hornady Versatite shells.

This target was shot with a Hornady TAP FPD Versatite shell (8 pellets at 1600 fps):

http://i386.photobucket.com/albums/oo306/rantingredneck/buckshot%20day%20at%20the%20range/941a9006-a309-420f-9c99-a8827b82a293.jpg

At 15 yards.......from a Remington 870 with an 18" cylinder bore barrel much like yours.

This target was shot with a Federal Tactical LE12700 Flite Control shell (9 pellets at 1345 FPS):

http://i386.photobucket.com/albums/oo306/rantingredneck/buckshot%20day%20at%20the%20range/8d03eb9e-b684-4835-b7ba-7df492c64184.jpg

At 15 yards from the same 870.

Now at across the bedroom distances the above shells throw one ragged hole patterns. At across the bedroom distances, traditional wad technology shells (Remington Express, Federal Powershok, etc.) do very well.

Example patterns of Remington and Federal traditional 9 pellet 00 buck loads at 7 yds:

Federal:
http://i386.photobucket.com/albums/oo306/rantingredneck/buckshot%20day%20at%20the%20range/002dc51e-827e-4560-9c7f-3bfd99d49f2a.jpg

Remington:
http://i386.photobucket.com/albums/oo306/rantingredneck/buckshot%20day%20at%20the%20range/cce85054-045e-4dd9-8c16-c466b18fea36.jpg

These patterns put the lie to the statement that "You can't miss with a shotgun".

rantingredneck
March 29, 2011, 11:32 AM
Zippy's advice of using ammo with "defense" in the name is also something to consider.

Hornady TAP FPD (For Personal Defense)
Hornady Critical Defense (basically the same load as the TAP FPD and includes the VersaTite wad).

myshoulderissore
March 29, 2011, 11:32 AM
Your shotgun has a cylinder bore, meaning no choke. You'd be hard pressed to find anything it won't eat with ease. I have about the same gun, and I love it.

Also, to note, it will NOT hold 6 3" rounds in the tube, as far as I can tell... 4x3" and 2x2 3/4", yes, but not 6x3". But the 3" loads can get pretty punishing, so don't sweat it. Just use 2 3/4" and keep in mind how many shots you actually "need" anyway.

TheKlawMan
March 29, 2011, 11:37 AM
Your tactical choke is an extended cylinder bore and your barrel is smooth. You can shoot those slugs.

this_is_nascar
March 29, 2011, 06:23 PM
Thanks for all the responses folks. I really appreciate it. It took me forever to decide on this gun. I didn't realize I'd spend at least as much time, if not more, deciding on which ammo to use in it. :D

10P8TRIOT
March 30, 2011, 02:55 AM
Took my Winchester 1300 Defender to the range last weekend and killed some cardboard with Federal Tactical LE132 00 Buck. I made some crude targets from a cardboard box and shot at 5, 10 and 15 yards. At 5 yards, all 9 pellets punched a 1" hole. At 10 yards, all 9 pellets were within 2.5". At 15 yards, 7 pellets were within 2", 8 pellets were within 3.25", and all 9 pellets were within 5.5". I am very impressed with the LE132 ... very tight patterns out of an 18.5" barrel, and very easy on the shoulder.

http://i613.photobucket.com/albums/tt211/mwhitney53/Winchester%201300%20Defender/LE132.jpg

http://le.atk.com/general/federalproducts/shotshell/tacticalbuckshot.aspx

this_is_nascar
March 30, 2011, 06:43 AM
From what I understand the PD132 is similiar to that LE132 that you're using there, isn't it? I'm definately looking for the "low-recoil" type shells to start with, just to get the feel of a gun for awhile. As time goes on, I can progress up to the higher-impact shells that have more kick.

From what I've been reading, the Federal PD132 is tightly patterned like the LE132 and is a "lower-recoil" style shell.

Bernie Lomax
March 30, 2011, 07:28 AM
Most here will probably recommend 00 buck for HD, but some say that finer shot is better for home defense because it's less likely to penetrate interior walls and kill or injure innocent bystanders on the other side. And, actually, according to the International Ballistic Wound Association, #1 buck is actually a better stopper than 00 buck. Whatever you choose, though, I wouldn't go any smaller that #4 buck. Anything smaller than that won't penetrate interior walls, but it also won't penetrate bad guys enough to reliably stop them.

JKump
March 30, 2011, 09:06 AM
I use Winchester Supreme #1 Buck on duty, so I can fully recommend this. Also #4 Buck is not bad and should fit the bill nicely for home defense. :rolleyes:

rantingredneck
March 30, 2011, 09:13 AM
I use Winchester Supreme #1 Buck on duty, so I can fully recommend this. Also #4 Buck is not bad and should fit the bill nicely for home defense.

Part of it comes down to availability. You don't see many #4 buck loads around here and very rarely a #1 buck load appears on store shelves.

I'd have no problem using either if they patterned well from my shotguns. The only #4 load I've ever patterned did not do so well. I'd like to get my hands on more of a variety for testing, but have not cared enough to order any personally.

My home layout is such that I have no qualms about using 00. Others' situations may vary though and as with anything........test, test, test, train, train, train.

Bernie Lomax
March 30, 2011, 09:31 AM
Part of it comes down to availability. You don't see many #4 buck loads around here and very rarely a #1 buck load appears on store shelves.

Midway often has them in stock.

Also #4 Buck is not bad and should fit the bill nicely for home defense.:rolleyes:

:rolleyes: backatcha. :)

rantingredneck
March 30, 2011, 10:20 AM
I'm sure Midway and other online retailers do often stock them, but as I said:

I'd like to get my hands on more of a variety for testing, but have not cared enough to order any personally.



Given my personal circumstances it hasn't been a high priority on my list of things to buy and try. Where I live I have no qualms about using 00 given the distance between myself and neighbors and the floorplan of my home which keeps loved ones out of any potential field of fire.

10P8TRIOT
March 30, 2011, 11:46 PM
From what I understand the PD132 is similiar to that LE132 that you're using there, isn't it? I'm definately looking for the "low-recoil" type shells to start with, just to get the feel of a gun for awhile. As time goes on, I can progress up to the higher-impact shells that have more kick.

From what I've been reading, the Federal PD132 is tightly patterned like the LE132 and is a "lower-recoil" style shell.
The specs for the PD132 and LE132 are identical ... 9 pellets @ 1145 fps with the FliteControl wad. I suspect the only difference is the market; civilian vs. law enforcement. Pricing is different also, with the LE132 being significantly less expensive. I recently purchased 10 boxes at Kyle's Gunshop for $3.80/box. M.A.H. Supplies is selling LE132 for $3.60/box. The PD132 is more readily available (Bud's, Hinterland, Midway, etc) but sells for $5.60-$7.00/box.

You might want to stay with the low-recoil shells. Pick up a couple boxes of LE132 and LE127 and compare for yourself. Increasing the velocity from 1145 to 1325 fps will also increase the free recoil energy by ~30%. You will definitely feel the difference and it may be the difference between getting off a good followup shot or not.

TheKlawMan
March 31, 2011, 06:13 PM
Zippy, What 12 gauge ammo is labled as "Home Defense" of which you are aware? I can only a think of Federal Premier Personal Defense Low Recoil, Winchester Supreme Elite PDX1, (okay not home defense but personal defense is close) and Remington Ultra Home Defense.

Federal Personal Defense:
http://www.midwayusa.com/viewproduct/?productnumber=121561

Winchester Personal Defense:
http://palmettostatearmory.com/1554.php

Remington Home Defense
http://www.basspro.com/Remington-reg-HD-Ultimate-Home-Defense-Shotshells-12-Gauge/product/10215215/-1624460

And then there is some Federal Personal Defense with flilght control, I think:
http://www.freegunstuff.com/AskProductQuestion.aspx?PID=187058

The four are really quite different. The Federal is pretty traditional buckshot with the twist being that it is low recoil and then there is the Federal with filight control that appears to have lower recoil (velocity). The Winchester PDX1 incorporatres a minislug with three pieces of 00 buck, and the Remington gives you the option of BBs or a mixed load of #2 and #4 buck.

rantingredneck
March 31, 2011, 08:43 PM
KlawMan,

There's also:

Hornady TAP FPD (FPD = for personal defense)
http://www.hornady.com/store/12-Ga.-Mag-00-Buckshot-FPD/

and

Hornady Critical Defense
http://www.hornady.com/store/12-ga-00-Buckshot-Critical-Defense

They are essentially the same load. Both using the Versatite Wad Technology.

myshoulderissore
April 1, 2011, 12:04 PM
Those Hornady loads are awesome, although something to consider is the recoil levels... They kick harder than most any other loads mentioned. I love the stuff.

I personally use Wolf 00 for my "standard" home load. No real reason other than it is good stuff, cheap, and I own lots of it!