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View Poll Results: 2 3/4 or 3" shell
2 3/4" 27 87.10%
3" 4 12.90%
Voters: 31. You may not vote on this poll

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Old October 24, 2001, 05:37 AM   #1
exilefromhell
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Shell size 2 3/4 or 3"

For home defense. Most likely 00buck-870REM-18" barrel.

Thanks
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Old October 24, 2001, 06:22 AM   #2
Dave McC
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2 3/4".

More important than case length is pattern, and the shorter ones oft have better patterns. ALL 12 ga loads have sufficient energy to do the job, but energy doesn't mean squat when pellets miss thew target.

Go with whatever works best in your shotgun....
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Old October 24, 2001, 06:29 AM   #3
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Check your pattern with several different loads at what you think would be defensive ranges for your house.

Likely one of the best will be with a 2 3/4" load. Often it will also be a cheap load. That be good. The lighter the recoil and the cheaper the ammo, the more likely you are to shoot enough to become proficient. Inside the house your shotgun is kinda like a big fuzzy .73 caliber rifle. Can't stop em lessen you hit em right.

Dave speaks from experience, listen up boyah.

Sam
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Old October 24, 2001, 06:49 AM   #4
exilefromhell
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makes sense!
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Old October 24, 2001, 03:03 PM   #5
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On the other hand, how far would the longest shot in your house be? In my place (less than 10yds max), there's no room for any sort of pattern to develop.
That said, I use 2-3/4
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Old October 24, 2001, 06:56 PM   #6
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I voted 2 3/4 but guess what I have in my ammo locker. 3" 000buck. I have to order some more buckshot and it will be 2 3/4. Probably will never use the 3" stuff, got it real cheap several years ago.

Will give it to my neighbors if TSHTF and they come crying to me for a gun.

Anybody tried the Federal Light Tactical loads?


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Old October 24, 2001, 08:46 PM   #7
Jody Hudson
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We built several model walls to duplicate each of the different walls in our home, interior and exterior and tested several rounds at all different possible inside the house distances.

After several days of testing we both changed totally and only to highest velocity #7, to #9 heavy trap and skeet loads in 2 3/4" with the plastic shot cup and velocity in the 1500 fps range. We found that they acted like slugs up to the longest inside distances we had, as the shot was still in the shot cup. But, once the load hit a wall, the shot cup was stripped away and the shot penetrated only a little ways and not usually with much danger past the second side of any of the walls we made.

We further tested the trap and skeet loads as per above on large pumkins "clothed" in all manner of different shirts, sweaters, jackets and layers of such which we got from the Salvation Army. We found that the loads acted like slugs -- through the clothing and into the pumkins and then all sorts of shot and fabrics were blown all through the pumkin making a really big mess. We figured maximum range on a pumkin with several layers of clothing under a leather jacket was about 25-30 feet with the trap and skeet loads. But, we didn't have any ranges inside our homes over about 20 feet from end of gun to point of impact as even a 30 foot room uses up 10 feet of the distance for me and my gun and the distance to the leather coat on the Bad pumkin.

I no longer consider the buck shot due to over penetrations and because I liked what I saw inside the pumkins better with the trap and skeet load.
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Old October 24, 2001, 09:07 PM   #8
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I would think that #7 shot wouldn't penetrate enough...especially after layers of clothing. Are you saying it does?

Also, the results you refer to as "You liked" are referring to ....???? Destruction or a more humane load?

Thanks
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Old October 24, 2001, 09:45 PM   #9
Jody Hudson
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What happens is that the shot penetrates like a slug for about 8-12 inches but it quickly smoooooshes out with the plastic cup and lots of clothing (loaded with unhealthy and germy stuff) and then many hundreds of little pellets smooooshed all around in about a foot diameter mush bowl that looks like it would be very difficult to "repair" in anything.... ever.

What I liked was the large area of mush mixed with stuff with a complete dump of energy within about a foot of penetration or a little less with the clothing. However when we held up a denim shirt behind a wall made of two layers of sheet rock, one on each side of a wooden stud and with fiberglass insulation in between... the pellets just barely penetrated the shirt and some of them did not. In a wall with sheet rock on one side and sheet rock covered with wood panelling on the other side the pellets nearly all fell to the ground after hitting the denim shirt on the other side. A small section about dime size did penetrate the shirt but we found them and the shirt material they carrried with them, did not penetrate a T-shirt a foot behind the denim shirt.

However the penetration of even two layers of sheet rock covered by a wood panel was just like a slug on the first side of the wall -- once that shot cup is shed on the first barrier however the small shot really just spreads fast and does not penetrate walls well at all, it does continue to move on through soft pumkins though.
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Old October 24, 2001, 09:52 PM   #10
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NOTE: Humane was not an issue regarding the punkins... We wanted to mangle those Bad punkins but we were trying to find what was safer for in-the-house shooting in a family house in case something were to ever get that bad. We found the buck shot, slugs, pistol bullets (even Glasers etc.) were still penetrating through the entire set of walls which was set up in line like the walls of the house.

The Glasers penetrated the entire set of walls like an FMJ and we tried .380, 9mm and .45. I like the Glasers for what they do to punkins also but NOT for any safety features according to our tests. And, the buckshot of different sizes penetrated similar to a pistol bullet from a .25 or .32

My choice at home, in my Mossburg pump is #9 at 1540 fps in a plastic shot cup with a 2 3/4 shell. If I lived in a log home with interior log walls I'd feel better about some sort of buckshot in that case perhaps. But, after what I saw inside the punkins... I'd rather go for the smallest, fastest, shot in the deepest shot cup possible and if I was reloading, I'd test load some shot cups wrapped in a strand of dental floss to keep them from spreadin out as quickly.
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Old October 24, 2001, 11:40 PM   #11
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I forget the URL, but I read an interesting article about home-defense rounds that concluded #4 buckshot was the best choice overall.

I use two federal "home defense" followed by two federal tactical #00 followed by three tactical slugs.
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Old October 25, 2001, 06:19 AM   #12
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So take #8 shot for instance (seems to be widely available downtown in walmart (haven't heard of or seen #9 b4)..you recommend that bird shot or whatever it is (might be skeet..dunno) over the other stuff (00buck)...but, are we talking ammo straight off the shelf? I ask, because you refer to "plastic shot cup" and later mention of "reloading....load wraped in dental floss".... I'm not very familiar w/shotgun rounds or reloading...so I thought I'd ask.

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Old October 25, 2001, 06:39 AM   #13
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Yes, off the shelf. 7 1/2, and 8 is more common but #9 shot is still off the shelf available. I don't reload myself but others do. I've not tried the dental floss trick and it might not work of course, but I like to experiment as much as possible rather than guess and take gun writers' word for things.

www.CheaperThanDirt.com has #9 Estate Shot for $3.95 a box listed. They also have #8 and #7 1/2 listed in Estate -- the least expensive ammo they have.

There is also Magnum 2 3/4" #9 in Heavy Load for lots more money.

They also have PMC ammo in all the above shot sizes in 2 3/4" AND they have a Remington Heavy Dove Load which is a fast and heavy load of #8.

Lots of Off The Shelf choices.
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Old October 25, 2001, 06:53 AM   #14
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Jdy, thanks for the real world tests, which happen to back up my opinions, prejudices, and reasoned, informed choices. Inside a house, all loads act like a giant Glaser Safety Slug.

I'd skip the dental floss tho. Adding stuff to reloads might give someone else an edge in court.
They also might boost pressures past red line.

If a perp is still a threat after being center massed with any shotgun load at typical HD ranges, it's not the load that failed to stop....
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Old October 25, 2001, 06:57 AM   #15
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I agree on reloads for self defense -- dental floss or not. It's best to have store bought ammo in the tube if one ever has to go to court. By the same token it seems like the better acting trap, skeet and dove loads will look better in court than buck shot, etc.
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Old October 25, 2001, 03:54 PM   #16
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Hey! I really appreciate you taking the time with my questions. And of course that field test

But just so I fully understand:

The buck shot will penetrate more if not excessively and is less "messy"/more humane...

and

Say #8 shot works just as well if not better, is cheaper, is safer because of less penetration but causes a mess/'not the most humane'

Is that right?

Last question promise

Sounds sympathetic, but should one be concerned with being humane or not? I've seen some pictures that made me second guess having to shot someone instantly...the feeling leaves soon after though..for I know if it must be done, it must be done.

Thanks again for all the help!
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Old October 25, 2001, 09:01 PM   #17
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Old October 25, 2001, 09:29 PM   #18
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Jody, you mention Trap and Skeet loads at 1500fps. Are you sure it is not 1200 fps. Most T & S commercial loads are around 1200 fps or less. 1500 FPS seems a little fast.

Lead or Steel?


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Old October 25, 2001, 10:01 PM   #19
Jody Hudson
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Usual is 1300 fps

Some are 1390 to 1450 fps and a few 1500 fps My PMCs are 1500 fps with #9

Remington also has a very cheap and fast load, just got some for $2.99 a box here at Walmart, 12 ga, 2 3/4 7/8 oz of 7 1/2 shot at 1390 fps

All are lead. I don't have any steel shot due to higher price and that I don't hunt anymore. However the steel is usually faster as it is lighter -- or at least it used to be.
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Old October 25, 2001, 11:33 PM   #20
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Hey! I really appreciate you taking the time with my questions. And of course that field test

But just so I fully understand:

The buck shot will penetrate more if not excessively and is less "messy"/more humane...

and

Say #8 shot works just as well if not better, is cheaper, is safer because of less penetration but causes a mess/'not the most humane'

Is that right?

Last question promise

Sounds sympathetic, but should one be concerned with being humane or not? I've seen some pictures that made me second guess having to shot someone instantly...the feeling leaves soon after though..for I know if it must be done, it must be done.

Thanks again for all the help!
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Old October 26, 2001, 12:14 AM   #21
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Quote:
Sounds sympathetic, but should one be concerned with being humane or not? I've seen some pictures that made me second guess having to shot someone instantly...the feeling leaves soon after though..for I know if it must be done, it must be done.
If you have any doubts at all as to whether or not to shoot, you shouldn't be shooting. Sorry, that's just my first reaction. The only time that I'll ever shoot another person is when that person poses an immediate, serious threat to the lives and safety of myself or my family.

I am not concerned about being humane to someone trying to kill me - I am chiefly concerned about stopping the attack RFN
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Old October 26, 2001, 11:50 AM   #22
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I have no doubt that I would save myself and my family! I feel the same way. What I should have asked, is would you pick the load that would be slightly more humane since both would probably get the job done. Just a thought. Sepsis is no way to go!

Thanks
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Old October 26, 2001, 04:45 PM   #23
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My opinon: when tenths of second count -- when one is trying to stop someone trying to kill one of my family... MORE is better! My advice is go get a few large pumkins, dress them in some Salvation Army clothing and do some testing. The tests are not perfect but I don't have any other advice that can be any more relevant unless you happen to have some sick, large, livestock that needs to be taken down.
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