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1Hobie
January 21, 2012, 12:01 PM
I've been following the thread about the best 12 guage HD load because I'm going to add a shotgun to my collection with the intent of using it for home defense. It's been interesting to say the least.:rolleyes:

I'm going to buy a pump gun and would I be able to cycle the gun fast enough to make the following approach feasible? I would practice with it as much as time and money would allow.

I was wondering if using a stepped approach to loading the gun would be wise. By this, I mean starting with birdshot for the first round or two and escalating the loads such as #4 buck next, and finally 00 buck if the BG hasn't got the hint yet. There is only my wife and I here and our house was built in 1901 so the walls are sturdier(plaster and lath) than drywall. Our bedroom is situated on the second floor so that my wife would be behind me so over-penetration would be less of a problem.


Hobie

Willie Lowman
January 21, 2012, 12:25 PM
When I lived further out, I kept my shotgun loaded with birdshot first followed by buckshot. This wasn't to "give a bad guy a hint." It was because I was commonly dealing with raccoons, opossums, and stray dogs. I could fire birdshot at something on or near my porch with little worry of property damage. If the birdshot didn't work I had plenty of 00 buck behind it.

As for home defense, I'd stick with just buck. I'll bet most folks here will tell you the same thing.

1Hobie
January 21, 2012, 12:29 PM
Thanks. I figured I'd throw the question out here. All of my experience is with handguns and rifles. Zippo with shotguns. BTW, I'm going to get some professional training in HD before I gear up for real.

Hobie

irish52084
January 21, 2012, 12:37 PM
Skip the bird shot all together. 00 buck and slugs on stand by are the probably your best choice for versatility. I don't know where the idea of using bird shot came from, but it's a bit ridiculous. Mass is more important to penetration than speed and bird shot pellets are very small and do not penetrate well. Bird shot is unlikely to cause a determined attacker to be incapacitated as quickly as the heavier shot from 00 buck.

If you do not need to worry about over penetration, then just load up with 00 buck and keep a side saddle loaded with slugs and a speed reload if needed.

There are a lot of people that automatically suggest a shotgun for home defense based on some misconceptions. Watch the magpul dynamics shotgun dvd for a very good tutorial on how to use a shotgun in a defensive role and the ups and downs of it as a home defense weapon.

C0untZer0
January 21, 2012, 12:56 PM
I'm scared of the BG shooting me. I fear shooting him once and then he gets off a shot and maybe puts a round into my chest or femoral artery.

I definately don't believe in a shoot & wait & see approach.


Using a step up approach is like saying "I'm going to hurt the intruder a little, and then if he shoots me I'll hurt him a little more, if he shoots me a second time, then I'm get serious and put him down with buck shot"

I think the quality auto-loaders are as reliable as pumps now, and they are have a higher rate of fire for the average person using them.

If you can practice doing double taps with your SG then by all means do it.

BLAM BLAM - a single event, quickly with no decision making in between.

And I would use #1 Buck if possible, #0 would be my second choice.

1Hobie
January 21, 2012, 02:40 PM
This is the kind of input I'm looking to obtain. Thanks for your time folks!:)

nate45
January 21, 2012, 06:22 PM
I don't think having your first shot, or two being birdshot is wise.

Your first shot may be the only one you get.

Common sense dictates that the worst should be planned for. Its true that an HD shotgun will most likely never be needed. Its also true that most home intruders would flee at the sight of a firearm. Furthermore, most would likely quit or try to flee after being shot with any firearm.

Now we come to the worst case. There is hardly a day, or certainly a week that goes by that we don't here of home invasions by a gang of multiple intruders, or someone mentally ill, or high on drugs assaulting someone. These statistically rare, yet at the same time common types of criminals may require more than just intimidation, or a sever flesh wound to stop them.

Look at it this way, would you want a fire extinguisher filled with chemicals that didn't work as well as another type? Or in the event of a fire would you want the best available?

Now while a shotgun actually isn't as reliable at stopping aggressors as a fire extinguishers are at putting out fires. I think that most people agree that having it loaded with the most effective ammunition is the wise thing to do.

1Hobie
January 21, 2012, 06:54 PM
All right! My defensive load out will be buck shot. No playing around. I'm going to get a shotgun in the near future. Just what yet I've not decided.

I'm going to get some training and work with the gun at the range to get a feel for it with the ammo that'll be in it at home.

Hobie

C0untZer0
January 21, 2012, 07:59 PM
I think the Mossberg 930 SPX has to be one of the best - if not the best value for a home defense shotgun.

Almost everyone who has one says that they are reliable and they run like champs.

Depending on how you feel about ghost loading a round - they are either 8 or 9 rounds in a fairly compact package - 39" OAL.

irish52084
January 21, 2012, 08:37 PM
I have to agree, the 930 spx is a great deal on an semi auto defensive shotgun. I've handled the 590A1 SPX which is a pump and it's very nice. I especially like the ghost ring fiber optic sights, nicer than just a bead front.

I really think a semi-auto is better in a defensive role as most people can fire it more quickly than a pump. The extra little bit of recoil that a semi auto eats up cycling the action can make long training days much nicer as well. Put 100 rounds through your shotgun in a short time frame and it can get uncomfortable.

highvel
January 21, 2012, 09:03 PM
Training means a lot, you will be more aware of the plus and minuses of using a shotgun in close quarters, and learn some really vital information for use in HD.
I still think one of the scariest sounds on earth is the slide of a 870 in the dark! It reminds me of the commercial where he say's "tell them you mean business"

skoro
January 22, 2012, 07:57 PM
My 12ga is a side by side double barrel. I use 00 buck in both chambers.

Tabor
January 22, 2012, 08:07 PM
I think a great defense shotgun would be one of the slam fires. Now thats a home defense shotgun!!

lefteye
January 22, 2012, 09:15 PM
Remington 870 with the extended magazine (or another brand with a similar design, e.g., Mossberg), loaded with #1 buckshot. IMHO the home defense shotgun must be loaded for any situation rather than a pattern of different loads implicitly (or explicitly) assuming a particular pattern of events in the use of the shotgun. I will not know, nor will I assume, the impact on the bad guy of his use of drugs or alcohol; his prior arrests, convictions, or incarcerations; the number of his cohorts in the current situation; etc.

LockedBreech
January 22, 2012, 09:50 PM
My 870 has 3 00 Buckshot Hornady TAP followed by 3 1oz slugs. No warnings if I legitimately fear for my life.

Buzzcook
January 23, 2012, 01:06 AM
I wouldn't use #6 bird shot.
But that's your call, if you buy the argument that pheasant shot is ok for home defense, then use it.

I don't see the point in moving to larger shot sizes if you think #6 is adequate.
And if you have buck shot as a back up to #6 because you think #6 might not be adequate then it's kinda silly using a suspect load in the first place.

1Hobie
January 23, 2012, 01:55 AM
Buzzcook wrote: "I wouldn't use #6 bird shot.
But that's your call, if you buy the argument that pheasant shot is ok for home defense, then use it.

I don't see the point in moving to larger shot sizes if you think #6 is adequate.
And if you have buck shot as a back up to #6 because you think #6 might not be adequate then it's kinda silly using a suspect load in the first place."

I decided you're right about 8 posts ago.;)


"All right! My defensive load out will be buck shot. No playing around. I'm going to get a shotgun in the near future. Just what yet I've not decided.

I'm going to get some training and work with the gun at the range to get a feel for it with the ammo that'll be in it at home."


Hobie

hangglider
January 23, 2012, 12:39 PM
The ICBM of shotshells: http://www.hornady.com/store/Slugs/

spacecoast
January 23, 2012, 12:52 PM
The ICBM of shotshells: http://www.hornady.com/store/Slugs/


Note that a rifled barrel is recommended. Probably wouldn't make much difference for HD. I use 00 buck in my 870.

hangglider
January 23, 2012, 01:26 PM
Yup it's a sabot slug meant for rifled barrels--I'm no expert but have used and immensely enjoyed my 870 for several years now--the folks at Remington told me the occasional rifled slug probably wouldn't hurt the smooth bore--just don't make a habit of it. I may be wrong--but the "use rifled barrel only" has more to do with accuracy/stability of the slug in flight than a potential catastrophic failure of the barrel itself. Interestingly, from what I've read it, sounds like it's actually worse to send conventional shot through a twist barrel than it is a slug through smooth bore. interesting reading http://theboxotruth.com/docs/bot46.htm

PS I put the ATI scorpion stock/buttpad on my 870--and I found it's great for reducing the shock loads--something to think about when firing loads with the force of an elephant gun or more.

LockedBreech
January 23, 2012, 01:52 PM
The ICBM of shotshells: http://www.hornady.com/store/Slugs/

That sucker is mean looking. I wish I didn't have a smooth bore,

lefteye
January 23, 2012, 02:05 PM
The Hornady SST is not a rifled slug; it is a sabot bullet similar to the Remington and is designed to be shot with a rifled barrel. As shown in the article, the sabot & bullet spin in the rifled barrel and the sabot separates from the bullet after exiting the muzzle. The spin stabilizes the bullet just like rifling in a center fire rifle stabilizes the bullet, thus making the bullet more accurate.

hangglider
January 23, 2012, 03:05 PM
Yup--my bad--it is a slug meant for rifled barrels--but not a rifled slug. :o

Buzzcook
January 23, 2012, 03:41 PM
1Hobie, glad you made a decision. Now go to the shotgun forum and get advise on a good shotgun.

My only input would be that shotgun shooting sports are real fun, so getting a shotgun that you can use in the field as well as at home is a good idea.

Stevie-Ray
January 23, 2012, 07:51 PM
If you decide on an auto, I can personally recommend the Mossberg 930 SPX as has been mentioned. It's my personal HD shotgun, when I'm at the north house. I keep it loaded with 00 buck, as I can't seem to find #1 buck anywhere. 00 buck in Rem/Win flavor is everywhere for 5 bucks or less, and they're great accurate loads in the SPX. It's action tames the recoil quite a bit, so quick follow-up shots are the norm. The stock is also adjustable for fit. You can also get longer 930 barrels for it, in case you want to play, and they are cheaper than other makes. It's quite a bargain.

In pumps, I would recommend the Remington 870 or the Mossberg 500. I don't have either, but their reputation is stellar.

Sport45
January 23, 2012, 08:16 PM
A Remington 870 with a standard size magazine loaded with 00, 1, or 4 buckshot will do an excellent job of covering the stairs. The idea (in my case anyway) is to protect my family. I'll do that by ensuring that anyone who breaks in downstairs doesn't make their way up to us. I'm not about to go down there if I think someone may be waiting.

We have cell phones and are willing to wait for the Sheriff's dept to come and root out anybody that needs rooting out.

chadstrickland
January 25, 2012, 01:33 PM
I have seen high brass number six kill plenty of deer.

I have heard alot of people say they prefer a shotgun over rifle for HD because of the wide spread of the shot gives you greater hit probability.

Every time I have shot buckshot or birds hot within ten yards it looks like one big hole with maybe a couple stray pellets a inch or so away.

shurshot
January 25, 2012, 08:11 PM
Easy ChadStrikland. Mention #6 Birdshot and folks start swinging around here...LOL!!!!

lefteye
January 25, 2012, 08:57 PM
Yes, you better duck Chad. I am curious about these two statements in your post:

"the wide spread of the shot gives you greater hit probability."

and

"Every time I have shot buckshot or birds hot within ten yards it looks like one big hole with maybe a couple stray pellets a inch or so away."

Pick a shot distance - any shot distance - only one of those statements can be correct at any specific distance, be it 5 feet, 5 yards, 30 yards, or whatever.

So, which of your two statements is true?

If #6 birdshot is a good deer load, why do hunters find #6 shot still inside small targets such as squirrels, rabbits, pheasants, ducks, etc? How can I expect a #6 shot pellet to go through both lungs of a deer if that same pellet won't go through a squirrel, rabbit, pheasant or duck?

C0untZer0
January 25, 2012, 10:10 PM
Does anyone know if the barrel for the 930 Field model is interchangeable with the 930 SPX - 8 Shot ?

9ballbilly
January 26, 2012, 01:47 AM
my personal HD shotgun is an 870 w/standard magazine. Loaded with either #1 buckshot or 00. I definately agree with the no warning shot policy. If I was in a situation that escalated to "condition red" I feel the threat needs to be neutralized immediately to protect myself and family.

While I've got nothing against autoloaders, I like the pump action as I believe
the sound of a round being chambered to be psychologically crippling to many would-be BG's, it would also serve as a first and only warning.

BillCA
January 26, 2012, 04:55 AM
In a 12-gauge, I'd go with #1 buckshot indoors. Slightly more pellets per round (.30 vs. .33 cal). This helps increase your ability to make hits. #00 buck will obviously work.

For a 20-gauge, your choices are more limited. I've found some #2 and #3 buckshot - Winchester - and that is what my 20-ga 870. In both, the last round is a slug. The extra recoil lets me know it's time to reload.

I wouldn't place too much faith in the concept that the sound of a pump shotgun will cause an intruder to get religious. It can also serve as a warning that someone is awake and give him time to prepare.

Also, think about your bedroom door (and possibly the doorways of your children). Do all of them allow you to fire from a strong-hand position (i.e. right handed shooters stand to the left of the door frame). If not, how good will you be shooting with your weak hand?

Training and practice are essential to success.

hangglider
January 26, 2012, 05:48 AM
I too seriously doubt that on the balance the racking of a shell has any benefit intimidation-wise--might even be a negative in terms of giving you away.

Which to me raises an HD readiness question. Do you keep a shell chambered and safety on, or unchambered but safety off, or unchambered and safety on? My understanding is that most shotguns can AD/ND with a simple "falling over" or jarring since the safety engages nothing more than the trigger.

Sport45
January 26, 2012, 07:51 AM
While I've got nothing against autoloaders, I like the pump action as I believe the sound of a round being chambered to be psychologically crippling to many would-be BG's, it would also serve as a first and only warning.

The only warning someone in my house might hear before I fire is me pushing the safety off.

Long before that they will hear me declare that the law is being notified and they'd best be making their exit.

Frank Ettin
January 26, 2012, 12:22 PM
...I have heard alot of people say they prefer a shotgun over rifle for HD because of the wide spread of the shot gives you greater hit probability.

Every time I have shot buckshot or birds hot within ten yards it looks like one big hole with maybe a couple stray pellets a inch or so away. Chad is correct. His point is that at "across the room" distances a shotgun pattern is still very small. You still need to be able to shoot it accurately and not rely on a shot patter to guarantee you a hit.

lefteye
January 26, 2012, 01:00 PM
Of course shot patterns start at bore diameter and increase in diameter (and length) down range. I may have misunderstood his intent in his statement that many people prefer a shotgun for HD because the wide spread of the shot gives you greater hit probability. Nevertheless, I do believe #6 shot is a poor choice for a self defense load even in an apartment.

chadstrickland
January 26, 2012, 02:37 PM
What post :D

And all I will say is that you reaaally need to find a new place to conduct your research bud :).

C0untZer0
January 26, 2012, 03:15 PM
I don't think a human skull or throat would react any differently than what you've described happening to the deer.

It's more how #6 - even high brass loads, are going to react when hitting a leather jacket, a sweater, a few inches of fat and an inch or so of muscle...

Is it going to get all the way back to vital tissue?



It might, against some people it might. But probably #6 is not going to reach the vital tissue consistently, and not against a large percentage of the population.

If I knew that the only people who were going to break into my house were scrawny characters 10" from front to back, and that they were only going to be wearing T-shirts, and I absolutely could accurately put my shot right where their heart was...

I'd still use #1 Buck :D

hangglider
January 26, 2012, 03:18 PM
All in favor of moving on past the load--say "aye"

"aye"

C0untZer0
January 26, 2012, 03:28 PM
What else is there to talk about on this thread? I think we covered the phased approach already...

hangglider
January 26, 2012, 03:42 PM
Call me stupid--but maybe it makes sense to talk about barrel types and chokes used and their relative impact. Improved...Modified etc.

lefteye
January 26, 2012, 03:48 PM
Iowa law requires slugs if you are hunting deer with a shotgun, as well as single projectiles for any other firearm that is allowed for deer hunting, e.g., muzzle loaders, specified handgun cartridges and center fire rifles .24 caliber or larger.

It is my understanding that Iowa deer are much larger than Alabama deer.

I never shoot for the head or neck unless I am standing over a live deer that has already been shot.

nate45
January 26, 2012, 03:51 PM
Hunting deer with birdshot is illegal and unethical.

If however, someone decides to load their shotgun with birdshot for defense, thats their business.

C0untZer0
January 26, 2012, 03:55 PM
I see the allure of having a 6-8" shot pattern on an intruder, theoretically you can puncture both lungs, puncture the heart and maybe one or two major blood vessels.

But it all is kind of predicated on getting that perfet shot at the perfect distance. If you're not getting the perfect shot at the perfect distance you're missing your target and sending one or two or more pellets out of the room (I'm sure this resurects the birdshot argument).

So anyway, I think it's probably better to try to have a tight shot group, I think the advantages outweigh the disadvantages.

I think Fedral's FLITECONTROL design has more of an impact on shot pattern size than choke.

Stevie-Ray
January 26, 2012, 04:07 PM
Call me stupid--but maybe it makes sense to talk about barrel types and chokes used and their relative impact. Improved...Modified etc. Not stupid at all, but it is 1Hobie's thread. If he doesn't mind, it's a good question. My SPX is cylinder bore, of course, so chokes don't mean anything to me, but what about the guys that might be using their field guns for double duty? IC perhaps, for HD, or what?

C0untZer0
January 26, 2012, 04:44 PM
Stevie-Ray how do you like your SPX ??

I thought the SPXs were past their initial bugs, but a guy on the Mossberg owners forum bought a new from factory one in July of last year and it had a burr in the feed tube like some of the earlier models.

I hope Mossberg isn't experiencing problems with these again...

1Hobie
January 26, 2012, 05:25 PM
:)My question was answered many moons ago. I certainly didn't mean to
re-fire up the debate that has ensued. I've learned a great deal however that has and will influence my future purchases.

Now it's pump or semi-auto....;):D

Carry on.

Hobie

Stevie-Ray
January 26, 2012, 07:25 PM
Stevie-Ray how do you like your SPX ??

I hope Mossberg isn't experiencing problems with these again... I've had mine for a little over a year and love it. It hasn't hiccupped once, including crappy target loads. What I shoot most out of it is 00 buck from Win/Rem, since it's widely available around here, and it is generally considered the #2 load for HD, so I like to have it around. I make certain I stay current with it, but the SPX seems to shoot everything I put in it rather splendidly. Soft-shooting due to the action, even with all kinds of buck. And BTW, don't let anybody tell you you can't get a proper cheek-weld due to the sights being too high, because the stock is adjustable. I've noticed they never seem to include that little factoid when they're complaining about a gun they don't own.

I suppose that if it ever craps out on me, I'll be PO'd at Mossberg, but for now the love-affair continues, and I simply can't think of a better HD shotgun at the price I got mine for.

eaglehd00
January 27, 2012, 12:10 PM
I have loaded my HD with Hornady zombie max 00 buck, just in case that day approaches.