View Full Version : Home Defense Shells

April 6, 2007, 08:17 AM
I just bought a cowboy style coach gun and for now will be using it as a home defense weapon. Should I just use regular shot or is there a home defense/personal protection shell that anyone knows of? Thanks in advance.


April 6, 2007, 03:01 PM
if its a new gun, like the coach guns from stoger, i'd load up some 2 3/4" 00 buck, reduced recoil if you can find it. 2 3/4" #1 buck is apparently ideal for stopping people but hard to find. another option is 2 3/4" regular 00 buck.

dont go with 3" or magnum loads, coach guns kick enoguh as it is, and in the house distances 2 3/4" is more than plently for the job. i do not beleive a 3" shell is going to do any more damage but slow down your recovery for the second shot.

this gun is okay for the time being, but you might want to think of a 18-20" barreled 870 or mossy 500 w/ like a 7-9 shot magazine on it. More than likely two shots will be enough out of the coach gun, but it is limiting you especially when its your life or anothers you plan on protecting. people will w/o a doubt mention all sorts of bird size shot claiming it will act as a slug at close range, will kill just as good, limits wall to wall penetration ect. IMO its a bunch of crap. Make your own conclusions.

April 7, 2007, 07:15 AM
Buckshot has the tendency to over penetrate as well. If there are other people in your home you run the risk of shooting them as well do to the fact that any 00 buckshot not on target will easily penetrate drywall and travel into other rooms.

I would keep no larger than 7-1/2 shot in the gun for interior home defence. Keep in mind that a typical interior home defence shot would be less than 20' unless you live in a mansion. Even with a cylinder choke in the gun the pattern would only be the size of a softball at this range.

Para Bellum
April 7, 2007, 07:38 AM
1 or 00 buckshot. If you worry about overpenetration get a .223 HD rifle with good ammo.

April 7, 2007, 05:39 PM
Beside penetration, not all buckshot patterns are equal. I just did some pattern testing today using my Benelli M4.
I compared:
Wolf Power Buckshot 2-3/4, 9 pellet 00 buck ($.60 ea in qty 75) to
Federal Premium Tactical Low recoil 2-3/4, 9 pellet 00 buck ($.70 ea in qty 500).

At 5 yds., the Wolf pattern was 4.5" x 3.25", the Federal 1.5" x 2.5".
At 10 yds., the Wolf pattern was 8.5" x 8", the Federal 4.5" x 2.25".
At 15 yds., (not HD distance) the Federal still was only 4.5" x 5.5" and
At 20 yds., (definitely not HD distance) the Federal was 7" x 6"

I like the tighter pattern to minimize possible collateral damage. At HD distance both would do the job. With the Federal Low Recoil shells tho', I was back on target in 1/2 the time of the Wolf.

April 7, 2007, 08:03 PM
I believe Agulia (sp) makes short home defense rounds.

April 8, 2007, 12:37 AM
I use slugs personally...

I would suggest getting a 5 pack of some loads easy to get locally and shoot a pattern board.

April 8, 2007, 02:17 AM
Oh boy, you're going to get a bazillion opinions here, including mine:

2-3/4" #4 buckshot. Not too much over-penetration worries and for HD needs, it will take out a BG easily.

April 8, 2007, 02:31 AM
I agree with banditt007. You might check this out -


Make sure you go to the second page and read the Lessons learned.

April 8, 2007, 09:41 AM
This gets covered every few weeks. I used to think that larger birdshot would leave a rat-hole in the BG at HD distances. After reviewing the opinions here, real-life shootout after action reports and box-of-truth, I am now of the opinion that #2 buckshot offers the best compromise between over penetration and stopping power.

That being said, I'm about to buy/build a dedicated HD shotgun and it will be stoked with low recoil 00 Buck. There really isn't any load that will guarantee against over penetration while still giving you the stopping power that you need. The lesson being that you must consider what is behind/beyond your target, even in a RL shootout.

In the latest issue of Guns and Weapons for LE, there is an article on combat shotgun use. The real lesson is to practice, practice, practice with your load/gun combination so that you will KNOW where it will hit.

April 10, 2007, 07:49 AM
I use #1 buck. Known for its severe wound trauma causing effect er something. It blows stuff up real good. :)

April 10, 2007, 08:05 PM
I'm with Skeeter1 here. Mossberg 500A is loaded with 2 3/4" #4 Buck - has 27 pellets, enough to ruin any bad guys evening. For inside the house use, (i.e., less than 15 yards) the pattern won't open up enough to significantly reduce the effectiveness of the load as it reaches "the target".