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Old March 20, 2010, 08:12 AM   #1
corvairkid64
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.410 for HD?

I'm still researching which gun to buy for HD.
Leaning towards a 20 GA Mossberg 500 because I feel that a 12 GA will be too heavy and have too much recoil for my wife to handle.
A number of people have suggested a .410. Reasons I've heard... much less recoil.... less chance of killing an intruder, but still capable of stopping him... there is .410 ammo available for HD.
What do you think?
Thanks in advance for your advice.
Ken
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Old March 20, 2010, 08:32 AM   #2
Beretta686
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It's not the best, but it'll work. Even with birdshot, you'd be so close that it would cause serious injury (much more than a handgun could ever do).
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Old March 20, 2010, 08:38 AM   #3
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Get a handgun and practice.

There's just as much chance for an intruder to break in when you're away...and unless you have a good gun safe, you'll walk into an intruder with your gun. Keeping your home defense shotgun in a safe restricts your access to it.

Do as you please, and I hope it never happens, but if confronted by a intruder I will shoot to kill.
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Old March 20, 2010, 08:45 AM   #4
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I would hesitate to abandon the 12-gauge idea prematurely. Get that Mossberg 500 and take your wife out to practice with some reduced-recoil loads. Once she feels comfortable with it, equip it with 00 buck for HD readiness. Nothing compares.
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Old March 20, 2010, 08:47 AM   #5
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Birdshot isn't appropriate for defense unless you are using #2 or larger (these are generally considered duck or geese loads) and have only very short ranges. I haven't seen 410 birdshot in anything larger than #6, a load that I find to be ineffective versus squirrels.

However, 410 3" is available in a 5 pellet OOO buck load. That's a serious HD load that will get the job done.

I'd still choose 20g over the 410.

12g reduced recoil loads are available w OO buck (and slug) which is easily handled by even small-statured people. I've seen very light women with minimal training handle the load with no problem.

The reason to consider a 20g or 410 IMO is the smaller guns that are available. Mossberg makes a 505 and now a 510 that are greatly scaled down. Shorter reach on the pump and less weight means it's more easily handled by the wife or smaller kids.
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Old March 20, 2010, 09:16 AM   #6
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I'd say get a pistol caliber carbine instead of a handgun. Rifles are just so much easier to shoot accurately and under stress than handguns, especially for new shooters.
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Old March 20, 2010, 11:15 AM   #7
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I'd go with a 20 ga. practice ammo will cost a fraction of what 410's will.
$5.50 for 20's vs $10.50 for 410's.Inside a house bird shot should be effective but I prefer buckshot since I don't have to worry about over penetration as someone in an appartment would.
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Old March 20, 2010, 02:35 PM   #8
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corvairkid64

I am of the opinion that 20 gauge inside your home with the right load is a excellent choice for defensive scattergun work. I would recommend this setup without reservation. MAKE SURE that you take your wife with you to select the correct fitting shotgun for HER. This will help reduce the recoil issue.

Charles Ellis has a very good point. No matter what the gun, correct practice and understanding of how it works are the keys to success. With that in mind, 20 gauge will cost a lot less than .410 for practice.


I am not a fan of .410 for fighting scatterguns, even with the new whiz-bang defensive loads being marketed. Please spend some time studying the difference in loads between 12 / 20 / and .410 defensive ammo before you make your informed decision.

Good Luck & Be Safe
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Old March 20, 2010, 04:47 PM   #9
mas12990
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easy choice

i would have to take scattergun's advice the .410 is not a self defence weapon ; although the .410 slug will stop a bad guy in his tracks, there is the accuracy problem...... i'm still thinking you should re think the 12g. . An autoloader will reduce the recoil .
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Old March 20, 2010, 10:42 PM   #10
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The modern 3" loads have 5 pellets of OOO buck. That's right, FIVE .36 caliber pellets. And traveling at 1100 fps. Even the old three pellet 2 1/2 inch version would probably smart a bit, but that isn't much of a pattern I agree.

410 isn't my first choice either, Bob. The patterns get pretty thin in just a few yards. I wouldn't recommend that load for deer. I wouldn't really recommend the 410 for any hunting. The 20g is still a light kicker and has a real shot load, big enough to make useable patterns in the field. 20g is much cheaper, it's true. But for around the house only, the 410 is good enough.

For across the room, 3" OOO buck would be pretty darn effective. It's not whizbang. Not like there's deplete uranium in there. Just .36 lead medicine and four more friends.

Quote:
less chance of killing an intruder, but still capable of stopping him.
Ummmm, no. Unless you mean using birdshot and hoping he runs away. And that really isn't stopping them, it's just relying on the fact that the criminal may well not be committed to the crime. Captain Kirk ordered Spock to put his phaser on stun, but it doesn't work that way with firearms. Killing them is stopping them.

Last edited by Kmar40; March 20, 2010 at 10:52 PM.
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Old March 22, 2010, 03:06 PM   #11
corvairkid64
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.410 costs more?

Charles and Bob mention that 20 Ga. ammo is cheaper than .410, and I am seeing that in my research. My question is why? Less is more? I suspect it's a supply/demand thing?

Still haven't made up my mind 100% yet... took the wife shooting a couple of days ago and she was very comfortable with the 20 Ga. So unless I hear some really good ideas on why to use a .410, I'm leaning in the direction of the 20.

Thanks again for all of your advice!
Ken
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Old March 22, 2010, 03:15 PM   #12
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My preference is a 20ga over a .410, but I would also (and did) pick a 12ga over a 20ga. To 2nd a suggestion above, get a 12ga Mossberg 500 and start with birdshot loads for your wife until she is comfortable and is not scared away from wanting to shoot a shotgun. Then let her try some reduced recoil #4 or 00 buck and she may be just fine with it. If you teach her proper technique, such as leaning forward into the shot (rather than leaning back, as most new shooters seem to do), it will go a long way in helping her comfort and sense of control.

The reason I suggest to stick with 12ga is because you have a MUCH wider range of ammo selection for any use you can think of with a shotgun, and at a cheaper cost compared to either 12 or 20 gauge. Yet, you can still go with reduced recoil rounds for her to shoot and practice with, and keep those same rounds loaded at home.

If you decide on using a .410, then I would strongly suggest to only shoot slugs or 00 buckshot out of it, and no less, which would be effective in self defense, but would lack in shot spread that you could acheive with a 12 gauge and nine 00 buck pellets out of a 2 3/4" shell. (dependent on the shot distance, of course)
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Old March 22, 2010, 04:51 PM   #13
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There's only a few reasons to shoot a .410-bore shotgun: You're shooting in a .410 event; an experienced shooter may wish to down-gun to minimize damaging game; it provides more exacting practice; they are cheap to re-load, or you're nostalgic about an heirloom gun. Selecting a .410-bore as a HD shotgun makes about as much sense as selecting a .25 ACP for your HD pistol.
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Old March 22, 2010, 06:03 PM   #14
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Something that a lot of you don't realize is that a 12 ga. is just too big for many women (and men.) The action is longer, wider, heavier. I'm 5" 6" and I don't like the way most 12 gauges handle.
It's not how big your gun is, but how you handle it.
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Old March 22, 2010, 07:47 PM   #15
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Gun fit - whether for clays, birds or HD - is paramount. If you don't like the way a gun feels, odds are the gun doesn't fit you properly. Plenty of women are very capable of handling a 12 gauge - maybe not the 3 or 3-1/2" uber-loads, but there's no slouch in a 2-3/4" load designed for the application.

Either the 12 or 20 will suffice for HD purposes where distances are short
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Old March 23, 2010, 04:10 PM   #16
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Winchester is bringing out a NEW .410 self defense load. Check it out on their website. Looks pretty interesting. It was originally designed for the Taurus Judge pistol.
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Old March 23, 2010, 04:24 PM   #17
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Stay away from the .410, Expensive to shoot.
#2s from a 20 gauge is perfect inside 10 yards, less likely to kill the neighbors kids than a blast of buckshot through Sheetrock and siding.

If 20 gauge is a bit much for the wife, consider a heavier pump than the mossberg 500 like the rem 870. A recoil absorbing stock like the Knoxx double spring design would be perfect.

http://www.midwayusa.com/viewproduct...tnumber=420928
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Old March 23, 2010, 04:41 PM   #18
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Since you haven't bought anything yet I'd say go 12 or 20ga. The 410 will probably get the job done but why not get something better if you can?
Anyway I sure wouldn't want to get shot with a 410
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Old March 23, 2010, 05:59 PM   #19
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410's probably not the best choice for a lot of folks, but may be the best option for others.

Think of an arthritic senior of limited strength and how well they'd use my 9 lb plus HD 870.OTOH, operating that little Mossberg with defensive loads may come easier.

Matching the gun to the gunner is a good idea.
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Old March 23, 2010, 06:20 PM   #20
Lee Lapin
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kid,

A while back my oldest niece decided she wanted a long gun at home, and that long gun was going to be a shotgun. She traveled most of the length of the state of NC (from Black Mountain to Pembroke) so her dear old uncle could put on a session of Defensive Shotgun 101 for her. We watched most of Louis Awerbuck's shotgun video after she got here, and set up a range session next day. First thing was to lay out a table full of various shotguns for her to try.

She settled on a Remington 870 Express Youth model in 20 gauge. There was by coincidence a 12 gauge duplicate of that gun on the table, an Express Turkey with a 21" VR barrel and a stock shortened to a 13" LOP. I asked her why she liked the 20 better, and she said it was just easier for her to handle than the 12. She had shot most of what was on the table, so it wasn't an issue of recoil as much as overall lighter weight and handiness that attracted her to the 20 gauge.

So she finished out the class with it, and next day she took it home with her.

I'd suggest getting one of the youth model 20 gauge pumps right off the bat if she's average size, so you don't have to do extra stuff to get the gun to fit her. But whatever it takes, the gun needs to fit her well, first thing.

Good luck and happy shopping,

lpl
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Old March 23, 2010, 06:26 PM   #21
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Quote:
Selecting a .410-bore as a HD shotgun makes about as much sense as selecting a .25 ACP for your HD pistol.
You need to look at your ballistic tables again. You're couldn't be more wrong if you were kissing your brother.
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Old March 23, 2010, 06:32 PM   #22
corvairkid64
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Thank you Kmar40.
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Old March 23, 2010, 06:40 PM   #23
corvairkid64
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Thank you all....
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Old March 23, 2010, 07:15 PM   #24
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Kmar40

Quote:
You need to look at your ballistic tables again. You're couldn't be more wrong if you were kissing your brother.
Your comments are a form of Puffery.

I can find actual evidence of defensive shootings with both 20 gauge and 12 gauge, to include autopsy and forensic data. I can not find any for .410.

So, either provide some data or I will continue to consider your comments puffery. Puff·ery Pronunciation: \ˈpə-f(ə-)rē\ Function: noun Date: 1782 : exaggerated commendation especially for promotional purposes or a opinion expressed as fact with no supporting data.
good Luck & Be Safe
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Old March 23, 2010, 08:08 PM   #25
corvairkid64
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Didn't intend to start an argument.... I was just asking questions as a beginner.
Again thanks to all who gave advice without put-down.
Regards,
Ken
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