View Full Version : One slug, one buck, one slug one buck, etc..

August 11, 2009, 09:46 PM
I talked to a shop owner in a coastal town that told me he recommends to people planning on sailing around the caribean or elsewhere that want a gun to keep on the boat, a shotgun loaded with alternating buck shot and slug to fire at approaching pirates or bad guys. Fire the slug at the waterline of the approaching vessal and the buck shot to clear the deck.

Interesting? What are your thoughts? Makes good sense, but I dont think a boat will sink fast enough to make a difference.

August 11, 2009, 10:16 PM
I would say as long as you are defending yourself it would be all fine and good but keep these two things in mind:

1. legally you are responsible for every bit of lead you put down range, every pellet matters.

2. It will be difficult to remember which one is in the chamber at what time under stress.

August 11, 2009, 10:22 PM
Nope...I just do one buck and that's it...and what I mean is #1 Buck. It's supposed to be the best according to the 'experts.'

If you need more than buckshot out of shotgun, then you need a rifle.

I think people need to remember that it is called a SHOTgun for a reason.

August 11, 2009, 10:32 PM
Tatsumi also has a good point, I can barley remember how many rounds I've put downrange unless I make it a special effort to count. I would not rely on myself to remember which was in the chamber under stress, YMMV.

My thoughts are more in line with mathman. I would keep the magazine loaded one down with buckshot, and keep a sidesaddle or buttstock holder with some slugs in it. That way you can always pop a slug in when you need it, but have buckshot at the ready for immediate threats. Chances are, if you know you need slugs, the target is probably still a ways off.

Lee Lapin
August 12, 2009, 08:12 AM
AKA 'candy cane' loading.

I've never heard a reputable instructor recommend doing it, because under pressure almost no one can keep up with how many rounds they have fired. And I've seen it tried in class, if people on a flat range can't keep up with how many times they have fired in a drill, how many will be able to do it in a firefight?

You need to know what will be coming out of the muzzle every time you press the trigger. My favorite instructor says he can't keep up with more than one kind of ammo in a shotgun, and so he just uses slugs. I'm still learning, and prefer to load buckshot in the magazine and slugs in the sidesaddle. That way I have slugs handy for a select slug drill, or for reloads.

YMMV of course.


Scattergun Bob
August 12, 2009, 10:24 AM
I agree with Mr. Lapins post in total. In a firefight there is more to think about than the magazine load-out stagger!

My points are;

With some experience at engaging from a pitching deck, I can assure you that accuracy is at best POOR. best to rely on shot.

Before you sail into another's national waters, be sure to do the appropriate homework, and follow all regulations precisely! Some nations consider foreign nationals with guns within their home waters GOOD candidates for a extended stay at the gray bar hotel no reservations necessary, we always have room.

Good Luck & Be Safe

August 12, 2009, 10:49 AM
Personally, I would save the shotgun for folks trying to board and would therefore use 00 buckshot. To repel boats, it would be an AR-10 with AP, FMJ and tracer to be used to disable their boat from a distance


August 12, 2009, 11:07 AM
my .02 cents on the subject.

Don't waste ammo shooting into the water.

Also if your staggering its not for the purpose of aiming at certain targets with certain rounds its so you can unload on one target. The purpose of staggering is that if the first round doesnt put the threat down hopefully the next kind will. in home defense people stagger for that reason. I have staggered rounds in my 870 because if the first round of 00 buck doesn't keep the threat down then the second round being the slug better do its job if not I'm in a world of shiot!

On the open see if your getting boarded by pirates I would just unload the staggered rounds into the pirates and boats. In that situation I think its more of keeping them at bay than really stopping the threat. I say that because you might be out gunned or out manned.

you might want to pick up a rifle for higher magazine capacity (less reloading) (AR Variant or M1) and like I said if it was me I would just unload into the boat and people. At that point I could careless of that pirate boat sinks.

Then if you gotta fall back into your cabin I would have a shotty set up with buckshot. Hell even some birdshot will disorient/kill someone at close range.

(I guess I should of read all the post. Basically explained in last post lol)

August 12, 2009, 11:33 AM
ive heard this before, but not for boat defense....

August 12, 2009, 03:00 PM
You might be better served by asking this question at some sort of "Sailing around the Caribbean" boating forum. For all you may know, it's less a concern than you might imagine.

Now the Somali coast... that might be a whole other kettle of fish. :eek:


August 12, 2009, 03:34 PM
At the end of the big cocaine years of the late eighties, theft of recreational vessels sailing in the caribe were quite common. The smugglers would leave a port, pirate a boat, transfer the load and come in with a boat that was legit as the owners were now shark poop and vessel not reported stolen.

Approx 2004-5
A smuggler brought a stolen sportfish into Daytona Beach. He ported it and left in the night. The marina owners boarded it to try to find contact info as they needed to setup to collect dockage. I went aboard with them snoopin' and it was obvious that the last voyage was not recreational in nature. The boat had lots of visible blood but no fishing gear and hatches that would normally hold voyage supplies were completely empty yet personal affects were every where. I was on the property when the boat came in and when we returned in the AM it was done... For 6 months they tracked and got the CG involved... Final outcome was an older couple had departed for the Bahamas but never made port of call or customs. The relatives said they never heard from them as planned and had reported the vessel to Bahamian officials as well as CG. The relatives suspected a sinking, not piracy. The boat in Daytona had a blacked out transom which obscured the original name.

I, nor anyone I know will do so much as an over night trip with out substantial arms with the 12 GA being a minimum with a .45 and a mini 14 being sought as well.

August 12, 2009, 04:24 PM
You might be better served by asking this question at some sort of "Sailing around the Caribbean" boating forum. For all you may know, it's less a concern than you might imagine.

ACTUALLY, it is a LOT more concern than most folks realize. The Florida "square grouper" trade is very much alive and well and drug runners are a very real threat, as are pirates or anyone else thinking they can get an expansive boat or smuggle something easily.......

August 12, 2009, 04:37 PM
... Well I would hope the drug runners or pirates you run into dont have their AKs pointed at you already... dont forget they fire back. Thats why I would say yes to a shotgun with buckshot for maybe mostly close to american shore, but if you are worried about more than a little breaking and entering with some theft, like a hostage thing or just taking of your boat by force a rifle is better... Problems on aiming and corrosion should be taken into account so reliability and practice on the boat is a good idea... thats my take

And yeah I read those other posts just reiterating and adding my $0.02

August 12, 2009, 04:51 PM
reliability and practice on the boat is a good idea...
Good points...
500 mossberg stored in the cabin with full time A/C helps the reliability...
And it is fun trying to shoot skeet in 2-3 foot seas:D

August 12, 2009, 04:59 PM
BTW, When I was consulting with a friend about his security questions (he is not a daily gun junkie but knew them enuff to ask advise) he was warm the shotgun as first line defensive weapon. He asked what I would suggest for ammo... I told him 00 buck in the gun and 15 rounds of buck and slugs in boxes. He was also armed with a borrowed .45 Glock for ease of use and a borrowed Mini 14 for longer range use as final layer in gun defense weaponry.