View Full Version : Shotgun for home defense. Help!

February 7, 2008, 04:36 PM
Im going to purchase one next week. I know nothing about them at all. Lots of research and I've come up with Mossberg or remington express pump actions. Can I please get some advice on, what gauge and barrel length would be best. Something my girl friend can handle as well. Im planning on keeping it under the bed. Any input would be great.

February 7, 2008, 04:46 PM
I am 100% confident in my Mossberg 500 to do the required job (whatever that may be) I prefer the 20 gauge as it is adequate without overkill to suppress any threat. I also prefer the 20 for 2nd shot target acquisition due to more manageable recoil. Since I tore up my left arm/hand I am even happier I have the 20... I prefer the top of receiver safety and action release locations.

February 7, 2008, 04:55 PM
easy choice:

Mine is shown here with a Speedfeed synthetic and wood factory forend.

Most K-Marts, Dick's, Sport's Authority, etc. have these for sale in the combo deal for under $400 if you're into hunting and clay targets as well

*IIRC Mossberg also offers a combo set*

February 7, 2008, 05:28 PM
I prefer a compact semi-auto... racking the slide can give your position away, eliminating the element
of surprise and give the BG a target area to shoot at first. Mine is an old HK/Benelli M1 Super 90 :cool:

February 7, 2008, 06:02 PM
Compact semi auto? No slide to rack on one of them huh? When my gun is in HD ready mode it has one in the pipe and 5 in the tube... I don't much care for the "poop their pants when you rack the slide" theory...

February 7, 2008, 06:12 PM
Compact semi auto? ;) I know, but an 18.0" barrel is compact for a semi-auto.
You can go shorter with a tax stamp.

February 7, 2008, 07:24 PM
Mine is the 18/18.5 500 (I can't find that 1/2 inch no where?) But auto or pump will make noise to ready to fire... I know when I tried to "let down" the slide on a B.A.R. and a winny shotty I did not get the action latched thus NO BOOM! Here at my house you better have FAST hearing as the only sound other than BOOM is the subtle tick of the trigger:D Right now I got bird shot in, now that I think about it, as juniors BOA was gettin' hungry and them ring neck doves found the spilled corn from a broken bag:rolleyes:... Gotta remedy the shell inventory situation...

February 7, 2008, 08:00 PM
Thank you guys for the qiuck responses. Hotdogs shoot a couple them birds for me. Now, should I go for the for the one that looks like Rampant_colt's or the pistol grip? Remember, home defense only. .

February 7, 2008, 08:06 PM
I MEAN "HOGDOGS"!! Sorry, my friend....

February 7, 2008, 08:07 PM
If you don't mind the "black rifle" looks, I would suggest a Saiga 12ga or 20ga. I had a Saiga 12 for about 7-8 years, and it was a great gun. Only time it ever gave me any hesitation was when it was -20 outside, then the lubrication got a little stiff, and it was hard to cycle (my fault though). 5-10 rounds as fast as you can pull the trigger, and fairly accurate with slugs too.

February 7, 2008, 08:33 PM
Any good pump will work for ya. I'd recomend Mossberg 500 or a Remington 870 because they're affordable, common, and very reliable. If you plan on using it inside your home, you'll want a shorter barrel.

Look at the used racks in your local gun stores. You may find something that you like at a lower price. Also, before you go out buying all the tacky-cool accesories for your gun, take it out and shoot it... ALOT! Its fun and the pratice is good for ya.

Here you can see my HD gun, a Remmy 870 magnum wingmaster, with 20 slug barrel and rifle-style sights.


I like my guns clean and simple. No tactical accessories for me.

February 7, 2008, 09:48 PM
Thank you redneckfur. I, like you dont plan to accesorize. Strictly plan on using (and hopefully never using) it for the house. I'll take it out to shoot a couple of times to get used to it. I'm pretty sure a 20g 18inch is what I'll get. Looking at used ones is a very good idea you've given me.

February 7, 2008, 09:57 PM
Just brought one home today...a police model trade-in, Mossberg 500 with extended magazine, 20-inch barrell & rifle sights. This thing was barely used. Haven't shot it yet, but it's a pretty simple gun. Got some 00 buck to go with it. For HD purposes, I think I'm I'm covered.

February 7, 2008, 10:11 PM
Mine sports a standard shaped rear stock allowing me full access to controls. Factory wood (likely poplar etc.) front wood. I bet 6 rapid fire rounds in the no moon dark will result in a 16 inch square being fully destroyed under fast fire conditions... did I say rapid fire? I mean fire all 6 as fast as I can from 15-18 feet.... I will close the gap while walking and firing I love my 20 gauge!

February 8, 2008, 12:26 AM
My #1 "things that go bump in the night" gun is my beautiful mid-80's Rossi Coach Gun side-by-side in 12 G (18" barrels, modified and cylinder) with exposed "ears". Fool proof loading and unloading, trigger locks on the hammers to prevent any chance of discharge due to striking the hammer, takes 3" shells and the hammers can be dropped with the barrels open to avoid AD's while unloading in APAR.

I have it fitted out with a 5-shell holder on the stock, sling and tritium front blade.

For more serious social work I have my S&W 3000, 18", 10-round magazine with Choate folder and a low profile Aim-Point.


February 8, 2008, 01:07 AM
Get the Remington 870 Wingmaster not the express. You'll be able to use it for birds and skeet too.

February 8, 2008, 05:43 AM
Just took home a 7-shot HD Express the other day---$340 from Cabela's---nice gun and pretty much what you're looking for---you can make a CYL barrel work for hunting---just use more shell than you normally would.

Not sure about the 20ga for less recoil---also have a 20ga Youth Express that will pretty much pound you like a 12ga due to its lighter weight. Also there is a greater variety and versitility found in 12ga shells.

My HD Express is also about 2inches shorter than the Youth model due to the shorter barrel-----it will be even smaller once I get the $60 or so saved for a 13" 12ga Youth stock for it----shortening the overall length by an inch and making it even more handy----this gun also came with sling studs and I put a sling on it in case I have to bug out for SHTF.

February 8, 2008, 07:48 AM
in all honesty, i think the $200 tax stamp is worth the added maneuverability for HD. i plan on getting an 870 express and throwing a 12" barrel on it.

February 8, 2008, 03:53 PM
Get the Remington 870 Wingmaster not the express.

A great shotgun, but the original post is asking for advice on home defense. An 870 Express or Mossberg 500 is easily sufficient without going the extra expense of the Wingmaster...especially since the less expensive guns each come in home defense models.

February 8, 2008, 04:02 PM
in all honesty, i think the $200 tax stamp is worth the added maneuverability for HD. i plan on getting an 870 express and throwing a 12" barrel on it.

You'll end up cutting down another barrel. Remington makes a 14" barrel, but won't sell to the public. Occasionally you can find 14" factory barrels for sale online. I'm currently in the process of doing the same thing with an 870, just waiting for the form1 to come back. It will compliment the 14" 1100 and 14" 590 quite nicely IMO.

February 8, 2008, 11:47 PM
Keep your eyes open for a good used Remington 1100 in 20 gauge youth model. The one I have has a 24 inch barrel, stock is a bit shorter so it fits many gals, soft recoil. Use size 4 buckshot and it will serve you or your sweetie well. Keep it stock, if you ever were to find yourself in court because you used it it is simply your rabbit or dove gun you grabbed and not something you purchased to kill people. You can not trust prosecutors in my state sorry to say, ya have to think of these things just in case.

February 9, 2008, 03:09 AM

Mossberg 500A 12 ga., 18.5", w/Knoxx grip.

February 9, 2008, 08:57 AM
Thank you all for the great advice! I learn so much off threads I start from you guys than I ever do when I research it my self. I'm getting the Remmington 870 Express 20g w/ 20inch. Even though I love the Mossberg right above this post, I think that the pistol grip would look kinda funny IF I decide to ever take it out skeet (even though I said that it would be kept indoors). If there are any objections.....

February 9, 2008, 12:08 PM
I bought a Remington Marine Magnum A few years back now ...

Last night , My oldest son bought a STOEGER P350 DEFENSE ...

I have to say ... it looks like it will more than get the job done just fine. Cycles very reliably , is very comfortable to hold , has a VERY good recoil absorbing buttstock which will handle the 3 1/2 shells it can fire and best of all .... he got it for $240 BRAND NEW.


February 13, 2008, 10:16 AM
If it is mainly just going to be used for home defense, I would suggest a youth model 20 gauge. Also, my girlfriend actually loves to shoot clays and hunt with it. So can be multipurpose and is very reliable.

February 13, 2008, 04:32 PM
Wow, that Stoeger looks nice for that price!

I will suggest a second Turkish offering. The Hatsan Escort. They sell for less than $200 and are made in 20 and 12 gauge. Good quality and reliable. Chrome chamber and bore. You get a good, new gun that you won't have to spend much on since it will be just sitting there 99.99% of it's life.

February 13, 2008, 04:44 PM
Hey, I don't know if our friend from Austin has already made his purchase or not, but I have 2 cents more to throw in here. I already posted what I have, a Mossberg 500. This was a police model, 7 + 1. Since the 500 is so simple to disassemble, I also purchased a used 28-inch barrel & a used stock-size magazine (5 rounds). The gun stays set up as a HD weapon, but is easily transformed into a hunting shotgun if desired. I've got less than $300 invested in this package...not hard to duplicate by anyone...

February 13, 2008, 05:35 PM
I like my Mossberg 500. I keep the 18.5" barrel on it for HD and when a buddy wants to go hunting or shoot some trap but doesn't have a shotgun (I've got a couple that need to buy one...lol) I just slap the 28" barrel on it and let them use it....fills all roles just fine.

It looks under dressed for HD duty compared to most I've seen on here but I like it nice and simple.
http://img441.imageshack.us/img441/426/mossberg500vk5.jpg (http://imageshack.us)

February 13, 2008, 10:26 PM
Hoyt, yers is "world class" compared to my ol' apple picker...