View Full Version : My thoughts on the Combat Shotgun

tire iron
July 26, 2001, 11:10 AM
Be warned this is a long post.

I will endeavor to point out when I am stating fact, observation and/or opinion, so hopefully, at the end, the reader will be able to “make up their own mind”.

And, by so doing, I am in no way insinuating that I am the “know all, end all” with regards to shotguns and their use in combat. In fact, the more I study and the more I experience, the more I realize that I have not even scratched the surface of this important and often emotionally charged subject.

First off, this test was an “informal” test; in other words, it WAS NOT an “official” USMC test. The tests were conducted by a number of Reconnaissance Marines.

The tests came about as a result of one of our team-members having recently returned from a training engagement at Gunsite (of the mid 1980’s). It was a handgun course, but his “bunk mate” was a shooting school “junkie”. A civilian, he went to Gunsite, Massad Ayoob LFI, Chuck Taylor’s ASAA, etc. (Remember that this is before Thunder Ranch, Blackwater and a few of the “newer” schools).

This civilian knew that my friend was from the military, so discussion ensued regarding weapons and tactics.

The subject of shotguns came up, and my friend espoused his opinion about the matter. My friend basically stated what all of us “believed”. That the shotgun was the “king” of combat, especially when used in a “jungle” environment.

This civy had apparently just trained with Chuck Taylor (a definite BTDT – has “seen the elephant” around the globe) – and Chuck was just finishing up a long term T&E of the shotgun as a combat weapon.

The things this guy told my friend seemed to go contrary to what we “believed” about the shotgun.

So, we attempted to find out for ourselves where the bear really craps.

All of us were dead sure that this guy was full of baloney. We all “knew” the shotgun was GREAT for Military type operations.

Funny thing though, when we closely examine the rational behind our collective thoughts on the shotgun, we realized that our “opinions” were based on birdhunting, rabbit hunting, deer hunting, stories we had read and heard, pictures of soldiers carrying shotguns, etc.

And, the more we discussed our “opinions”, the more we realized that maybe we DIDN’T really know what a shotgun was and was not capable of. (For instance, there is virtually NO comparison with hunting birds and rabbits with a shotgun – and combat. Stories are usually opinion buried in fancy words. And, we knew from personal experience that pictures meant nothing. Case in point – you can find pictures of soldiers taping two mags together, but anyone that has done that, and then “hit the dirt” – realizes very quickly that the second mag gets filled up with dirt. You definitely don’t want to stuff THAT mag in the well, making that a “unwise idea”. Hence pictures cannot be trusted to be “gospel”.)

Through these discussions we recognized the effect EMOTION had on our opinions. But since we were professionals, we recognized (usually after it was pointed out to us) when emotion was rearing its ugly head.

Emotions are not based on facts, rather on feelings. The whole gun issue is “emotionally charged”. If the anti’s would look at the FACTS – they would have no basis to stand on. We recognized that we were doing the same thing. We were allowing emotion to “cloud” the issue.

So we pledged to be as objective as possible, and to carry out the tests with as little emotional bias as possible. (That obviously did not mean that we would not have fun while conducting said tests!)

We then planned what those tests would be, and the various criteria regarding those tests.

We tested a wide variety of shotguns from that era, with the Remington 870 18” barreled riot gun the most prevalent (that is what we had in the armory! The other shotguns were personnel guns of the some of the testers). We used government issue 00 buck, as well as “store bought” #4, 000, 00 and 0 buck. However, it must be stated that “buckshot” technology has come light-years since that time period. These were the days before “buffered shot”, “plated shot”, “tactical shot” and a plethora or other modern innovations to increase the effectiveness of buckshot. SO – the results that we got almost 20 years ago could be VASTLY different now. And it begs the question of – when to do the next test?

Our targets were “brown paper sacks” (yep, the exact same ones you bring your groceries home in). We chose these, because they very accurately display the average thoracic cavity size of an adult male, and they are “3-D”, and CHEAP.

We then came to a consensus as what we would qualify as “acceptable” with regards to rounds on target. We agreed that to qualify as a “stop”, 80% of the pellets would have to hit the target. In other words, if only one or two pellets hit the target, it was a “non-aggression stopping hit”. We were only interested in stopping further hostilities; we did not care if the person died three weeks later as a result of gangrene. We certainly recognized that “one pellet could get lucky” – and hit a vital that would “stop the fight” – but we did not want to depend upon “one lucky pellet”. We wanted to have confidence in what would work “most” of the time, not hope for that which rarely happened.

We would test targets in the open, targets directly behind concealment, and targets 7 and 15 yards behind concealment, respectively. (The latter in case there was some bushes in-between us and the “bad guys” – as it typically would be in a jungle or wooded environment.)

When patterning, we noticed how horribly some shotguns patterned. Even with the exact same brand and barrel length the patterns were different. And the same shotgun would pattern different with different loads. And as the barrels heated up, they patterned different with the SAME load. And these were not minute changes like what can be experienced with handguns and rifles. At least with handguns and rifles you would be “close enough for government work”. Not so with the shotguns we had. Clint Smith of TR fame is quoted as saying “if you don’t like the way your shotgun patterns, shoot it again – it will change.” We found that to be true! Some of the shotgun/load combinations were not effective at 25 yards in the open! Two sometimes three pellets on target, and nearly all of those were peripheral shots. ALL shotgun/load combinations “passed” at 15 yds.

When the target was DIRECTLY behind concealment and the shooter was 7 yards from the target, all loads “passed”. (Cover consisted of thick North Carolina lowland brush.) When the target was 7 yards behind concealment, and the shooter seven yards from the concealment, about half the time the target was “neutralized”.

When the targets were 15 yards behind cover, and the shooter was 5 yards in front of cover, less than 25% of the targets were neutralized.

I have purposefully NOT gone into great detail of the loads used, because the loads manufacturers put out today are clearly superior. HOWEVER, I think it would be VERY interesting to use “modern loads” with a “modern shotgun” to include the highly rated Vang Comp system to see how well shotguns and shotgun ammo performs today.

Needless to say, we came away with an altogether different opinion of the shotgun after performing those tests.

For the past two weeks I have been researching this topic quit studiously and here is what I have found.

Nearly all the “big” schools advocate the shotgun’s range at 25 meters or LESS (with buckshot). Slugs are rated at 75 to 100 yrds.

The spec op community (at least the guys I know that are “still in”) uses shotguns for breaching only. (Blowing doors hinges off for door kicking stuff) I have “read” that some SF units carry shotguns in Central and South America, but I have been unable to substantiate that as fact. So for now, to me, it is merely rumor.

After reading this far, you are probably wondering what the “bottom line is”.

I don’t know.

I think that before anyone trusts their life to a shotgun in combat, that some SERIOUS testing take place.

Tests like what we conducted above, but also to include penetration tests also. Over the past few weeks I have wondered – since most of the worlds armies are gravitating toward “body armor” – how effective is buckshot on body armor? My opinion is that it would perform poorly against body armor.

And what about LBVs? Will buckshot penetrate AK magazines that are basically covering the guy’s torso in his LBV? Will it penetrate 2 AK mags?

How thick of winter clothing will modern buckshot penetrate, and at what range?

For now, there are TOO many unknowns for me to recommend a shotgun for general purpose use.

For “un-obstructed” shots out to 25 meters, the shotgun IS king. (Like home defense or for "riot abatement".)

But other than that, I have my reservations.

I have no emotional tie to this issue, I really would like to know how modern guns/loads work.

There you go.

I've got my head down - ready for incoming!


tire iron

PS I just bought a Mossberg 9200 - the first shotgun I have had for over 10 years. Sold my "Bennelli" ten years ago - it was not the "ultra-reliable" shotgun that I had "read about". YMMV.

July 26, 2001, 01:13 PM
Good post. I have a Mossberg 500 for home defense but I have never really given combat outside the home with it a thought. I keep #7 in mine to help minimize penetration indoors but it would be interesting to see what the load I am using would do in the test you describe. I am guessing poorly but again I will not be shooting at distances over 10yds indoors with it. How do sabot slugs do against body armor? Does anyone know? I guess it would be smart for me to keep my normal load backed up by some heavy duty loads on a stock shell holder? Again good post.

tire iron
July 26, 2001, 01:58 PM
Thanks Keeper!


tire iron

Dave McC
July 26, 2001, 02:29 PM
Wow, a great post w/ many points to think and argue about. Kudoes and thanks,Tire Iron. A coupla things I'd like to talk about are....

For military style war, give me an M-14. Dealing with smaller probs,like civil disturbances, home invasions,etc, that will occur within 25 yards or so, hand me that 870. Within 25 yards, in trained hands, a shotgun is a threat neutralization apparatus of great merit. But the limits of the shotgun show up quick out there past 25. Different mission, different tool.

But being a civilian, and way too old and fat to be a combat infantryman, means most threats will occur inside that 25 yd line. The more common scenarios happen way closer,and here the shotgun really shines in trained hands.

This being the real world, cost comes into play here also. We all have mortgages, car payments, bills of every stripe and oft less money than we'd like. A good battle rifle runs well over into 4 figures, has little utility outside combat, and is oft under more regs and laws in these ill informed and repressive times than shotguns.

A good, reliable "Serious" shotgun can run well under $400,and many can be used in the clay games, CAS or hunting. A riot bbled 870 is one great quail gun, tho it's not the esthetic equal of a Fox SXS.

A dedicated shotgun fan like myself can arrange a battery of 870s, set up for everything from trap to Crisis Management,shoot them extensively, and still get his kids through college w/o major trauma or skipping lunch for a few thousand workdays..

And, by buying used, taking time and using my head, I could duplicate my shotgun battery down to the least, last gizmo(Sorry, Mr Moderator) for much less than $2000, maybe $1500. That's an 870 for every member of the family and a spare.

How far would that $2000 go in the world of top line battle rifles?

OTOH, weigh your shotgun round of choice and weigh a round of 5.56 or 7.62X39.During my thankfully brief(but not brief enough) service in SEA long ago, 200 rounds was about standard. Howja like to have to run/fight/evade/survive/win while carrying 200 rounds of 00? 8 boxes of trap loads is a lot.

If the Revolution starts without me here in Howard County, I might leave the 870s for something like my Model 94 and a couple of those bandito bandoliers, and save me 15 lbs of penalty weight. And the increase in effective range might be a deciding factor in whether we make it through.

In a discussion like this, there's few absolutes, just options. Maybe discussion of all the options can aid some of us to rethink. That includes me, if I'm wrong, I'd kinda like to know so it can be fixed.


Al Thompson
July 26, 2001, 06:17 PM
Dave - :D

I went through a similar "education" with a couple of SGs - military issue and home owned. Never tried the brush test, looks interesting.


Oleg Volk
July 27, 2001, 02:12 AM
Personally, I find that shotguns kick hard enough to present a training problem for most people. Magazine capacity is also pretty low. Choosing between a 7+1 20ga pump and a 30+1 Mak90 I'd pick the latter.

July 27, 2001, 08:38 AM
I've had the (dubious) priviledge of seeing the riot gun employed in combat. Under the right parameters it's a kick*ss weapon.

I've also seen it used extensively in three gun matches, on courses set by a really sadistic Match Director, pretty much real life encounters.

With modified guns the results are way above what one would normally expect out of a scattergun. My personal pump gun patterns 12 gauge #0 12 pellet buck into 15 inches at 35 yards. Center mass, point of aim. Slugs going out to 140 are no big issues, and I carry four in the spped feed stock just for those cases.

Now having said all that, I've prioritized my weaponry, since I live in a rural (VERY rural) in Texas, and LE response times for a shots fired call have run well into an hour.
It goes like this;

Pistol......in the house
Shotgun.....in the yard
AR15 with 90 rounds on board........out to the gate 500 yards distant.
Very custom Rem700...........everything else.

The AR is by far more versital than the scattergun.
Learn your weapons, and understnad that you always use what you have to fight your way to something bigger!

tire iron
July 27, 2001, 10:16 AM
Thanks for the posts guys! Looks like we are all on the same page so to speak.

Erick - I must apologize, I do not know what "(another reader of the short Irishman)" means. If this comment was directed towards me, then I really have no clue on how to respond. Thanks for the info regarding body armor.


tire iron

Dave McC
July 27, 2001, 11:14 AM
A great thread, Tire Iron, and we seem to be on the same page indeed.

Those grocery bags make great targets, and they're biodegradeable.

Knowing Erick, that wasn't any kind of insult, but I admit I'm puzzled also. Must be a literary reference.

As to fighting one's way to a better weapon, amen. Life's taught me to always have Plan B in place....

Al Thompson
July 27, 2001, 12:32 PM
I won't answer for Erick - but the short Irishman probably refers to a Gunsite instructor. Erick knows him, I read his writings.. :D


tire iron
July 27, 2001, 02:52 PM
Yeah, I did not take it as an insult, however if he was looking for a response.....he will have to wait along time cause I am "clueless".


tire iron

July 27, 2001, 05:23 PM
Erik, have you tried saboted slugs against vests?

Dave McC
July 28, 2001, 07:10 AM
A coupla items....

Years ago, one of the more technically minded gun writers took two bolt action rifles with consecutive serial numbers in 243 off the assembly line, set them up identically down to the same torque on the action screws, and tested them at the bench. A load that worked well in one worked well in the other. Both had similiar accuracy with any given load.

Try that with shotguns and you'll reach new heights of frustration.Even when tweaked, coddled and pampered, each shotgun acts as a law unto itself. In fact, take two 870s, pattern any load, swap the bbls and see if the results match either original setup.Everything in those bbls affect pattern, from headspace to muzzle crown.

This doesn't mean good results are impossible to get, it means we have to do a bit of work to get them, rather than get decent performance off the shelf and w/o testing.

And Oleg's point about kick and so on is viable. Many folks start off wrong and get turned off right then with bad or no training, an illfitting stock, poor form and heavy loads. Combine them with the myths and war stories and it's a miracle anyone achieves proficiency with shotguns. Back when I was in uniform and instructed,the only trooops that moved past bare minimum proficiency were those that LIKED shotguns and shot them recreationally. As it is, many folks with shotguns would be better off with a different weapon. Wife and Daughter here do not like shotguns, and there's alternatives available for crises.In fact, Plans B and C are in place...

A shotgun's neither a panacea for problems nor an Amulet that wards off evil by its presence. It takes committment and training to make anyone effective and dangerous only to the right people with any weapon. Shotguns are excellent weapons when used by SOME people under SOME conditions.

All folks need to make informed decisions about what to use for defense. That certainly includes shotguns...

tire iron
July 30, 2001, 09:27 AM
Thanks for the follow up posts guys.

It is kinda sad that we really don't "know" what various weapon/weapon systems actually "do".

However, if we keep asking the right questions, then maybe we will get the right answers.

Keep up the good work!


tire iron

Dave McC
July 30, 2001, 11:55 AM
Thank you, Tire Iron. I hope we see you around this BB more, you certainly have something to contribute!

Weapons need to be used to be understood. No theorizing, just hands-on training. We need to know their capabilities, their fragility, their awesome responsibility of wise use....

July 30, 2001, 02:45 PM
This is a good topic. One area the shotgun will do well in is night fighting in CQB. Moving targets at night will be much easier to hit with a shotgun than with an iron sighted M1A for example. If the fact that it is night has limited your range, then you are giving up little to go with a shotgun.

More importantly, In urban scenarios, I hear everyone spewing the "urban rifle" myth. If you think a .223 is a good choice for any neighborhood situation (riot, home defense, ect..), test the penetration of .223 in household materials. I did. Even .223 SAILS though a typical home. I know that some claim .223 will penetrate less than 9mm blah, blah, blah.... Try it yourself. Don't trust anyone elses test. Using a rifle in an urban situation will get your neighbors six year old little girl killed. It is a dumb idea.


July 31, 2001, 10:32 AM
Interesting thread.
On the discovery channel last night they showed some scientists in the Arctic. It was gratifying to see that the producers did not edit out the scientists heartfelt endorsement of carrying a shotgun; in fact several said that no one should be up there without one. It looked like they carrying pumps, mostly with folding rear stocks.

tire iron
July 31, 2001, 10:40 AM

Why did they carry shotguns in the artic? For Polar Bears? SHEESH! I would not want to wait until a Polar Bear got in range for a shotgun. I would rather have FN with a spare mag or two in my parka.

Of course a shotgun would be better than throwing snowballs, but the range is not that much different.


tire iron

PS - a guide in Alaska told my dad and I what to do in case a bear chases you. He said you throw crap (he used the other word) in his face. Being young and dumb, I asked him "where am I going to get the crap to throw in his face?" His reply was - "just reach for it, it will be there!"

He also told me that when faced by a bear to "stand up and spread your legs and hold your arms out wide." I asked "why, to make yourself look bigger?" His reply - "no, you do that so the bear cannot eat all of you in just one bite!"

Lame, lame, lame!:D

Dave McC
July 31, 2001, 11:53 AM
Shotguns, usually short bbbled pumps, are standard equipment for many Artic folks, either permanent or transient.While a heavy stopping rifle like a 458 Winchester might be a better choice, the shotgun maintains an edge by its versatility.

Many Park Rangers in bear country use pumps. Oft these are mix loaded, slug,00,slug,00,etc.

My ideal Bear gun for stopping charges would be belt fed(G)....

tire iron
July 31, 2001, 12:04 PM
Yeah, a M-2 .50 cal! LOL

That would be some serious "bear" medicine!


tire iron

Jeff #111
July 31, 2001, 09:13 PM
I am not a shotgunner. I own a couple of shotguns that I inherited, but I've never hunted with a shotgun and I don't shoot skeet. In the 14 years I served in the Army (1986-200)I carried the M16A2, the M16A1, the M3 greasegun ( I was a tanker for awhile )the 1911, the M249 SAW and of course the Beretta - no shotguns.I never saw any combat either.

Now I'm a new police officer of ten whole months. Approximately three weeks ago I pulled out my Remington 870 with a fourteen inch barrel while on an emergency call.

Now I know there is alot of controversy about barrel length and rounds. Okay I accept that, but when I pulled out my shotgun, racked a round, and ordered the two men throwing beer bottles at their fellow party goers to drop the bottles - they did. We took five people to the hospital that night. There was broken glass and blood all over the place. Nobody was seriously injured, but beer bottles do alot of damage when they hit. I wasn't about ready to go hands on with those guys. I followed the Use of Force model.I wrote my report and was told that in that case I displayed good judgement. So hooray for me.

Later on one of the two men stated to another officer that a handgun isn't as impressive as having a "goddamm" shotgun pointed at them.So I am a firm believer in the psychological impact of the shotgun if nothing else. Believe me I was happy to have it that night. Initally there were three of us and probably a couple hundred guests. It was a Quinceneria (I hope I spelled that right) that got out of control when some guests who were already drunk showed up.

tire iron
July 31, 2001, 11:59 PM
Jeff #111,

The circumstances that you so aptly illustrated were PERFECT for the shotgun!!

Glad the "intimidation factor" worked for you. That (as you know) is a legitimate and proven quality the shotgun has in this country.

Thanks for the post, and glad you followed the first rule of law enforcement: (add in Sean Connery accent from the movie "The Untouchables) "You make sure your alive to go home at the end of your shift. Thus endeth the lesson."


tire iron

Denny Hansen
August 1, 2001, 01:05 AM
Just my 2 cents worth.
I'm happy for anyone who has had the "intimidation factor" of a shotgun work for them. Really. However during my 15 years as a cop I found that intimidation only worked well on the proverbial "Reasonable Person." Rarely in a deadly force situation is the bad guy reasonable. If he were, there would not be a deadly force situation to begin with.

Train hard, know your weapons's limitation and may Lady Luck be with you. I would, however, caution against putting too much faith in the possible psychological effect a shotgun may have. It may end up biting you where the monkey puts his peanuts.

Dave McC
August 1, 2001, 05:32 AM
Denny has a good point, Jeff. While I stopped an escape attempt at the Md House of Correction by racking a round, it's not something to depend on.

At the same time, the late Gary Klein had a point about few people "Bucking" when a shotgun was pointed at them,which is why his nickname (earned during armed robberies) was Buckshot.

Unfortunately for him, he ran across an exception to the rule when he stuck up a convenience store here and met a Korean store owner that carried. Final score was 1-0, the store owner's favor.

People are irrational, and felons are usually not wrapped tight. Ever deal with a PCP freak? Drunks are a piece of cake by comparison.

Stupidity plays a large part, natural selection is an imperfect and lengthy process(G)...

Jeff #111
August 1, 2001, 10:55 AM
Some good point about shotguns. But I didn't grab it just for the intimidation factor. I was more then ready to use it. Both those guys that I found myself confronting are well known local hoods and they are known to carry. One of them once knocked another guys teeth out with a rock and then had his familiy and friends scare the victim and witness into not testifying.

The fact of the matter is there were two things running through my head that night. The first one was, " jeez we're outnumbered and this is bad." The second one is I once read an article by Ayoob. In it he said consider a shotgun to be a bigger handgun with similar limitations - just a little stronger. I decided that the situation called for firearms and the shotgun seemed like a good choice in the heat of the moment.

Believe me I know how lucky I was. All three of us do because once I had those two proned out on the ground the other couple hundred or so people did what we told them to. Amazing. We really breathed a sigh of relief when the county and a couple of stste troopers showed up to help. I've never taken on a "duster" but I did help arrest a cranker on a felony warrant a couple of nights ago. There were two of us and that little 120lb female did not go easily.That situation was strictly hands on. We won, but I did get a boot up the side of my face. This job is amazing if sometimes a little painful.

Dave McC
August 1, 2001, 01:19 PM
Jeff, part of my uniform for years the state didn't issue was a cup, if you catch my drift. Wore Kevlar also. Great stuff....

Crackheads get goodncrazy. Even a 120 lb female can be a threat, glad that boot didn't get a better shot at you.

And to all good cops and COs, may G*d Bless and Watch over you....

Pat Rogers
August 1, 2001, 10:53 PM

I applaud your attitude in not taking anyone (nor their tests) at face value. However, i will respectfully disgaree with you on several issues.

CQB is often defined at being from 0-10m. Clint Smith has stated (and i'll have to paraphrase here) that at close range shotguns remove meat and bone, but must be aimed to be effective.
This of course is due to pattern dispersion, or lack thereof at CQB distance. You can miss with a shotgun, up close or at distance.
CQB is rarely fought in the dark- weapon mounted white lights are usually used, though there may be some exceptions, primarily in infantry combat, which is usually described as Close Range Engagement- CRE.
Yes, human opponents do move in a fight. Gunfights are dynamic affairs. However, as the average size room in a residential occupancy may be somewhere (depending on geographical location and price range) around 10'x13', movement may, or may not be constrained by design.
Shotguns are no easier to utilize then carbines or smg's, and may in fact be much worse due to muzzle blast, recoil, overpenetration and inability to rapidly reload (though the last may be a non issue).
I know of no team that uses 7.62x51mm weapons for CQB, and probably for cause- they also exhibit extensive muzzle blast, and recoil may prevent rapid follow up shots- and overpenetrartion is horrific with certain ammunition.

I'm not sure of the protocol used for your testing of 5.56x45mm, but i have witnessed numerous tests, and have of course seen others published (notably the Albuquerque PD test done by Neal Terry) that indicate 5.56 is a safer round to use in CQB- though not by any means perfect.
The major issue in CQB is rapidly defeating your opponent. Missed shots may in fact hit someone unintended- as may shots that perforate your opponent. 5.56 will usually fragment and tumble within several inches of striking anything. 9x19mm will react significantly differently, and perforation of an opponent may occur more often.
Also, 5.56x45 will perforate soft body armor, where pistol caliber cartridges and most shotgun ammunition will not.
If you have the opportunity, attend a class by Giles Stock hosted by Hornady. Giles is a real deal guy, and knows more about the black art of ballistics then most.
Read the writings of Dr. Gary Roberts, specifically as related to effectiveness of 5.56x45 in the CQB environment. Gary is another SME on ballistics, and is methodical in his research.
Special Operations Teams have transitioned from sub caliber machine guns to 5.55x45 for many reasons- ballistically superior, safer to use indoors, ability to provide rapid follow up shots on demand, ergonomics, terminal ballistic effect, ammunition capacity ands ability to reload rapidly, and ability to utilize out to 200 yds or so.

On the related note of intimidation, my good friend and NYPD cop Steve Green has stated " The only time someone should ever hear me rack the slide is when i am preparing to shoot him again".
I have some serious issues with going into a gunfight with a Condition 3 gun (though i understand completely the "cruiser ready" condition may make that necessary).

Gunfights within the confines of structures are violent and exciting affairs. The ability to deliver rapid, accurate shots into a threat will determine whether you will have a war story or a Memorial Softball Field named after you.
Nothing- absolutely nothing that you can realistically hold in your hand can be counted on to stop an adversary.

Stay in the fight.

August 2, 2001, 11:19 AM
Thanks Pat. I never meant to say that a shotgun doesn't need to be pointed. I just think think it will be easier to hit with due to the spread of the buckshot on moving targets. As far as penetration is concerned, a .223 may penetrate less than a 9mm. However, that is not the point. They both penetrate typical home materials far too much in an urban environment and run the risk of killing a neighbor. 00 buck minimizes that risk. Regarding stopping power, a .223 is a good immediate stopper if you have a class III weapon. It is less effective in a mini-14 for example. For civilians, the shotgun will put the bad guy down faster. As a matter of fact, THIS is the overriding key issue for CQB above all other things after safety of innocent people. You will be literally face to face with your opponent. If he can stay in the fight only 1-2 seconds after you shoot him, he still lives long enough to take you out. The shotgun is not perfect. But, it is the best non-class III weapon.

My comments are mainly directed to civilians (BTW, cops are civilians!) I would expect to be more likely to use my Benelli at night during a riot or home break-in.

Long Path
August 2, 2001, 02:50 PM
Having shot a couple of tactical shotgun matches and having done a little personal training on my own, I can tell you that Erick's mention of being able to effectively do a lot of practicing unloaded is very true. If you can, get yourself several dummy rounds or snap caps. I've learned that what wins these things is gunhandling. If you're fast to mount the shotgun to your shoulder (which you need to do; let's dispell the myth of clearing a room with a shotgun fired from the hip, right now.), you'll be that much quicker to fire. Practice fast reloads. Practice making sure that the gun comes to your shoulder in allignment with your target, for a true "snap shot."

Then get out to the range and set up 5 reactive targets like steel plates, or some chest-sized cardboard targets a little distance from each other at 7 yds distance, and practice killing them rapid fire. All of you with pump guns who really believe you can fire them as rapidly as autos-- take them out and try this. I'm not talking about simply function-firing the gun as rapidly as one can cycle it, but firing aimed fire, changing targets while cycling, and doing it again. It can be done mighty quick with a pump, but it's a perishible skill that takes practice to keep one sharp.

It's a good point to remember that shotguns have their limitations. While load changes can overcome some, have you practiced your load change for speed? How many shells are with you or are on board the shotgun when you pick it up?


August 2, 2001, 02:59 PM
Good point about speed. In all of the shotgun classes I have taken, the semi-auto's are about twice as fast. Not to mention all the shortshucking pump gunners do when they get excited.

I personally do not see capacity as a limitation for a civilian. I doubt that a person could find even one documented situation where a civilian had to tactically reload a shotgun or even a handgun to remain alive. Sometimes the things we learn in the shooting schools just don't happen in real life.

August 2, 2001, 06:19 PM
Jeff and Pat,

Welcome to TFL! Glad to have you both.

I have been a small game (mostly rabbits and squirrel) hunter for most of my life. I killed my first deer with a shotgun. I have three shotguns, and I love them.

I believe a shotgun is best employed by the citizen who uses them often as hunting arms, and so is intimately familiar with them.
I do not believe in intimidation factor to stop a potential threat to my life, and I do not believe in giving away any clues to my strength to those who already pose a threat to me. I feel similarly when some have bragged about the "intimidation factor" of their knives. (I feel that I have gravely erred if I am forced to employ a knife, and my attacker even knows I have a knife in play.)
I tested an old Second Chance Level II vest against a 2 3/4 Foster slug a year ago. Vest was not penetrated, but was knocked about 2" into the creosote-soaked wood on which the vest was mounted.
At some point in the future, I plan on getting one of the Saiga-12 shotguns, with their rugged action system and detachable mags. This is less a priority than a FN-FAL, or setting up my PSS. :)


Pat Rogers
August 2, 2001, 10:24 PM
Erick, Spectre, thanks!

Dave 3006,
Each one of us has a frame of reference that is unique, and so it is that we see things differently.
You say that by pointing a shotgun at a moving target you will increase the potential for a hit due to the pattern spreading.
OK, if you are far enough away for the pattern to spread, what happens to those pellets that miss? We are of course responsible foe everything we launch down range, and those pellets can, and will hit something- perhaps that neighbors 6 yr old?
At close range- within the "A"" zone, the charge will be almost exactly the diameter of the bore, so there is no advantage to the shotgun there- it will hit only what you aim at, just like any other firearm.
You also mention "Class 3" weapons, and i am mystified here. Where are you going with this?? Are you advocating full auto fire in CQB?
If so, then you are pretty unique- i know of no team that utilizes full auto with 5.56 during the surgical shooting required in CQB. We did it with the MP5's, but we had to in order to ensure incapacitation. There is a fair amount of info related to the use of 5.56mm during IHR and CQB, and it is fairly positive. Keeping in mind that nothing can be guarenteed to work all of the time, the 5.56 works a lot more then it doesn't, and this is why we use it and not a shotgun.
While i am not a big fan of the Mini's, it is an 18" bbl carbine that launches a projectile down range exactly like any other carbine. It is therefore as efficient (or unefficient in your view) as any other firestick.
Dave, you are absolutely entitled to your opinions as am I and all others. I'm not sure of your particular frame of reference, but i feel pretty confident of mine.

Art Eatman
August 3, 2001, 09:55 AM
Pat, it could be that Dave3006 is referring to the stopping power of rapid, multiple hits. Abstract sense, not necesarily specific to his preferred usage.

While I wouldn't choose any full-auto critter for my home defense, I note that my nearest neighbor in line-of-sight is a half-mile away. My use of full-auto would be determined by how much of my furniture (and hearing) I'd care to damage. :)

And, welcome aboard!


August 3, 2001, 10:11 AM
At 5-10 yards, you certainly have a bigger spread than a .223! Every little bit helps. Have you ever tried to hit a moving target with a carbine? It is not that easy. And, if I do miss, my ballistically challenged 00 pellets will be far less deadly as they leave my house than a .223 rifle round. My neighbor is 25 feet away. I think he would appreciate my attitude. And yes, multiple (9) simultaneous hits are better than one .223 round for stopping a very close adversary.

I cringe thinking about all the people who buy into the urban carbine fad that have never, never bothered to think about overpenetration. They read an article at take it as fact. Kind of like the Straussburg tests. Geesh.

Jeff #111
August 3, 2001, 12:49 PM
Boy this thread is really showing some serious legs. I think everyone is making some excellent points about the smoothbore. I carry one because it comes with my cruiser. I carry a mixed load of OO buck and slugs because my departmetn says I have to. I practice with my 870 because I have to qualify with it.

Personally I think the shotgun will do the job. You still have to use some skills and common sense, but that goes for all firearms. While the shotgun may not be as good as a weapon as say an M4 carbine or the MP - 5 if it's all you got then it beats the heck out of a rock.

By the way with all this debate about the combat shotgun I seem to remember the Marine FAST teams use shotguns as well as the MArine security teams that guard all the nuclear vessels etc. Is this correct? I was in the Army, but I respect the Marines and if they believe in the shotgun then it must still have a place in combat units as well as the suburbs. Any former Marines out there? If you have any input it would be welcomed.

Oh, and before I leave, did the Strassborg test really take place? Or is it some kind of "urban legend?"

August 3, 2001, 04:38 PM
Jeff, many of us have our doubts about the goat test.

Here's (http://www.thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=75373&perpage=25&pagenumber=1) a very recent thread on them. Some folks seem to have some type of emotional attachment; I don't really care much, one way or the other. I figure, if I do any fighting, it will probably be somebody real mean, and too stupid to just stop after I shoot 'em once, no matter what I'm using.

Saw a deer like that, last year. I "reminded" that 'ole buck with a .40 a half-hour or more after he took that .35 Remington slug. Didn't have that problem with the little buck I took a few days later, but then, I was using a .45-70. I do reckon you tend to get a little "luckier" when you use more gun.

tire iron
August 3, 2001, 07:28 PM
Pat Rogers

Good to see you here.

Jeff #111

I (tire iron) am a former Marine. The Marines DO NOT issue a "shotgun" for "combat". Shotguns are used in the Marine Corps for LE type activities, of which FAST is part of. In an LE typer scenario, the shotgun has SOME merit. However, in a "combat" type scenario, the shotgun is TOO limited in its capabilities compared to other weapon systems out there.

FR (Force Recon) USED to have shotguns for "breaching", as I mentioned in the opening (albeit long) post to this thread. However, since FR no longer has the IHR mission, maybe this is no longer valid.

Pat Rogers can speak about current USMC policy on the shotgun.



tire iron

Jeff #111
August 3, 2001, 08:14 PM
Okay now I see. Thanks for the update. I see what you mean about LE vs combat. But..... I do have a short exerpt from one of my books here at home. The book is about the history of the Winchester company. In the section about the Model 1897 the author puts in a recounting by a former Marine Lt.,Paul Jenkins, in WW1,5th Marine Regt, 2nd Inf Division. The 2nd Inf Div in WW1 was made up of two Army Inf regiment and two Marine Regiments.

...and when those shotguns got going-with nine.34 caliber buck shot per load,6 loads in a gun, 200-odd men firing-the front ranks of the assualt simply piled up on top of one another in one awful heap of buckshot-drilled men.

I found this and thought it would make a nice addition to the thread. I don't know what it really proves, but it's fun throwing stuff like this into the fire.

Pat Rogers
August 3, 2001, 10:49 PM
Hi Guys, and thanks for the welcome.
OK- some facts. Force no longer has the IHR mission (some CO's thought that doing greenside and blackside concurrently strained their resources. This is not the case at 1st Force, but IHR is no longer a mission.
However, the training has not changed one bit (with the exception of the term IHR). VBSS, GOPLAT's etc are still a part of the MSPF mission profile. and breaching is the first step to entry. Force uses all breaching methods available, including shotgun. !st Force has Rem 870's, some Mossbergs (which are shunned when possible) and believe it or not, 2 Win 1200's.
That is the only reason that they have shotguns in the Company.

Now- FAST does not have a law Enforcement mission. They generally are used to deter, or respond after an incident to secure a location (the US Embassy's in Africa, or the USS COLE for example- actually, so did the embarked Force plt.)
While they may have some shotguns available, those i have recently worked with used M4's, M16A2's and M9 pistols.
Security Force Bn are also armed similarly, though shotguns may be used for protection of Special Weapons and such. I believe that they have shotguns available, but can't comment further because i don't know.
The reality is that in the Marine Corps, shotguns are not a major player in combat, but may be present for security or support functions.

Dave- as i said before, we all have different frames of reference.

"Have you ever tried to hit a moving target with a carbine?"?
Yes Dave, I have shot people at close range. It is not easy with any gun, and that is why we train to a higher standard, not a statistical certainty. My frame of reference is that the carbine is currently the best tool available across the spectrum.
Yopu have your opinions based on your frame of reference, and while i strongly disagree, i also respect it. There is no sense in either of us wasting each others time here. Do what you need to do, and i'm sure you will do fine.

Daniel Watters
August 4, 2001, 04:04 AM
I wonder how much of the continued LE dominance of shotguns over rifles/carbines is simply due to the relative price tags. New in box, a basic pump shotgun is pretty cheap compared to an AR15-clone or even a Mini14. It is one thing for the holders of the purse strings to release enough cash to buy a few M4 or MP5 for the tac team, and quite another to outfit every cruiser in the department with one.

November 23, 2006, 01:40 PM
I came across this thread while doing a search and I wanted to bring it back from the dead because I think a lot of people who were not on here 5 years ago could benefit from reading it. Good stuff here.

Lee Lapin
November 23, 2006, 02:16 PM
Good stuff indeed. Talk about a blast from the past...

Shotguns have had a role in combat since they were frontstuffers- Confederate cavalry had a yen for multiple pairs of cap and ball sixshooters and sawed-off double barrel shotguns loaded with buckshot, for example. And most anyone who has read some military histoy is familiar with the role of the Winchester 1897 Trench Gun in WWI and the Philippines. If you need details on the long history of fighting scatterguns, the book has long been written- it's Thomas F. Swearengen's The World's Fighting Shotguns.

I agree with the majority of posters here, many of whom are more experienced than I. Shotguns have limited utility as a purely combat weapon. But for household defense in the nonmilitary world, or for breaching, guarding fixed sites or prisoners in military operations, they sure do shine.


Death from Afar
November 24, 2006, 03:51 PM
I enjoyed this thread and there are some interesting thoughts about the Shotgun.

GUnsite notes that the shot gun has:

-devestating terminal ballistics
-versitile ammo types
socially acceptable

The cons are
-extensive muzzle blast
Stiff recoil
limited range
limited ammo capacity
slow to reload

Interestingly, no comment is made on "easier to hit with". And I most certainly dont think a shotgun is an easier weapon to hit with than a carbine. I very strongly belive that at any range aside from spitting distance a shotgun must be aimed as a rifle is. Anything else is a recipe for disaster. Dave raised the point how hard it is to hit a moving target with a carbine, I agree, but a shotgun at close range is just as hard, and once the buckhot pattern opens, then you can get such gaps in your pattern a bad guy can walk through it.

I do not accept that the limited ammo capacity of a shotgun is real handicap with a good operator with a proper ammo carriage system. I belive that as you can "shoot one, load one" it is a very rare situation in deed that a shotgun will go dry in a fight, and with proper training it shouldnt.

Once a person is properly trained, there is no better weapon system on earth at close range than a shotgun. BUt the person must be trained. As gunsite says, it is a thinking mans weapon.

November 26, 2006, 03:31 PM
"Some good point about shotguns. But I didn't grab it just for the intimidation factor. I was more then ready to use it. Both those guys that I found myself confronting are well known local hoods and they are known to carry. One of them once knocked another guys teeth out with a rock and then had his familiy and friends scare the victim and witness into not testifying." Ok. This seems to be the most informed group of folks i have scene on this forum, and if i can pick up anything from you guys i will most definitely try. But i do think punks like these that bash rocks over one another or innocent people for that matter and THEN threaten people not to testify and have done god knows what else in their criminal career, well quite frankly i think they forfeit the opportunity we like to call life, and should spend the rest of their time in jail or better yet on death row not wasting our tax payers money which has been stretched out time and time again on these people, when i don't see reform in sight. I do like all of the arguements on here, and since i'm not nearly as smart or qualified as anybody here, i will keep my mouth shut about hd shotguns or anything of that nature. Thanx again guys for the information and stories but while being a civilian, and not knowing many cops i still do hope that all of you make it home safe every night.

November 26, 2006, 06:02 PM
Very interesting discussion,

I have to agree with the sentiment that a shotgun is the best weapon at short range (sub 25 yards) for the shotgunner, espically those with limited experence with carbines. There are allot of people who are intimently familar with their shotguns through hunting, trapshooting, sporting clays, etc. A shotgun is clearly superior untill they learn how to run a carbine well.

November 26, 2006, 09:32 PM
This is an awesome thread!
I have a "two cents worth" to toss into the fray if no one objects.
I did 22 years in the mean streets as a municipal copper.
10 years worth as a detective and 3 of that as Chief of Criminal Investigations.
I retired, (disabled) as Lt. of SWAT, firearms instructor, wrote deadly force policy, yadda, yadda, yawn.
I guess that was a bit of an introduction and a way of laying a bit of background.
As a cop I saw plenty of s.g. wounds. Trust me when I explain that terminal balistics of even birdshot at close range is nasty. And usually fatal.
I got into a discussion of the s.g. and it's role in police work with Massad Ayoob several years ago.
It seems the s.g. got it's start as a law enforcement tool a long time ago in the days of front loaders and highway robbers.
In fact the blunderbuss, the trumpet barreled front loader was the prefered gun for discouraging robbers on the stage routes in Europian countries.
The funnel tube didn't scatter any more than any non choked s.g but it was very easy to pour powder and shot down that thing while making a hasty run from bad guys.
Faster reloading you see, even in those days.
The double barrel s.g. was the fastest repeater of any kind until Col. Colt came along.
Add to the fact that the double gave two very fast shots it was also extremely lethal at close range.
So we have a repeater that is also very powerful up close.
Combat in law enforcement has aways been a close range propostion.
As law enforcement became more organized and a little more sophisticated the s.g. changed little.
There were leaps and bounds of development in handguns but s.gs. remained pretty much the same.
The s.g. in police work became traditional in this country, accepted both by cops and the public.
When the Win 97 came along it proved to be a reliable repeater that held more than two shots and remained every bit as lethal as a double.
Hence the pump s.g. became a traditional police weapon accepted by the rank and file copper and the public.
There are many reason why s.gs. are still the 'go to' weapon for law enforcement.
One is tradition.
Another is the fact that pump s.gs. like the 870 and Mossy 500, don't break the budget and they remain servicable for decades of use and abuse.
Buckshot as the ammo of choice is also a throw back to days gone by.
It was available, it was, and remains devestating at close range and most important of all....to the managers of police departments, buckshot won't drill through two houses and kill grandma in her living room.
Try to get a Police Chief to trade in his departments 870 pumps for a Styre AUG and watch him sweat at the thought of liability suits.
Frankly I think buckshot loads flat stink.
Using an 870 'riot gun' with the then standard issue 9 pellet of soft lead 00 buck we demonstrated that you could miss a man sized target at 25 yards.
It was not unusual for any hits at that range to be clearly non serious hits in the extremeties.
It was also common to get a few hits in the torso but frankly at that distance with that load it was a crap shoot.
At 25 feet, against a bad guy not wearing armor the s.g. is phenominal.
At very close ranges the shotgun still must be aimed to be effective.
They don't scatter that much.
The police riot gun is not a very good combat weapon.
I don't hink it's worth a hoot as a home defense weapon for the average citizen either.
It is very hard to train an inexperienced person interested in self defense to shoot the hard kicking s.g. with it's attendant ear splitting muzzle blast that will flat temporarily blind you in low or no light.
Frankly the full powered buck/slug loads scare hell out of rookie shooters.
I would rather see the home defender with a carbine of effective caliber than a s.g. or pistol.
For those that can handle the recoil and blast as you and I can the s.g. makes a pretty good close range weapon with devestating lethality.
But as a combat weapon in todays age, it sucks.
There are much better tools available for the task.
If anyone would like to hear a few real stories of shotgun shootings let me know and I'll dug up a couple from the archives.

November 27, 2006, 01:18 AM
hmm very good stuff jeager. I am always interested in factual data, and idk if anybody else would like to hear but i would like to hear a story or 2 if you have the time, and what loads you would consider "optimal" for a shotgun. I believe federal to be the #1, atleast in my shotgun but like a woman, all are "unique". In a short barreled riot-type gun would you want something that disperses more lead? like say a magnum 1 buck? thats kind of my thinking with what ive heard of the poor patterning quality of riot guns but i cant make heads or tails of what to do with a stubby pump.

November 27, 2006, 06:03 AM
The greatest issue with the 12 bore 'riot' gun is control of the weapon.
I'll define riot gun as a short barreled pump with no choke (cyl. bore) or imp. cyl.
The very best thing a person can do is pattern the thing at the ranges one exepcts to bring it into action.
If defending life, limb, and property is your goal (watch your laws on property) then your practical ranges might be 3 to 25 feet.
You know your home and situation, I don't.
I live in the country with no close nieghbors so over penetration is not an issue for me.
My h.d. s.g. is an 870 Express loaded with 3" mag #4 buck.
00 buck or #1 would do just as well I think. This particular weapon sports a 20" smooth bore, rifled sights, and has been smithed by a s.g. smith.
It has the forcing cone relieved, bore polished, and threaded for tubes, it wears a mod.
You need not have your barrel worked on. I'm just a goof ball that wanted to invest more money on the two barrels that came with the gun to determine if the work done was worth investing more money in the two barrels than the gun cost new!:eek: :confused:
I get 10 or better % tighter patterns. That is not a significant issue for h.d. but this one doubles as a hunting firearm.
The short barrel with sights and extra full choke tube patterns well with turkey loads at 40 yards.
Pattern your gun at the ranges you think you might have to use it.
That is paramount.
A story:
A really bad gobblin was married to a woman with a teen aged daughter, not a product of this union.
This gobblin had an impressive criminal record.
I knew the man well, in fact knew his whole family of really bad people.
It was my job to "get involved" with the criminal element. As a detective I could not learn my turf from the country club don'cha'know?
Wife of gobblin learns from her 15 year old daughter than Mr. Gobblin had been having sex with her but she said nothing out of extreme fear of him.
She had good reason to be afraid.
He was that bad a man.
I was respectufully afraid of the guy myself, quite frankly, but careful to never show fear around those kind of animals. His whole family were animals that would kill ya in a heartbeat.
Daughter finally breaks down to mommie when Mr. Gobblin isn't home and tells of years of sexual abuse.
Mommie of course is livid with anger but has better sense than to call the cops because one or more of the 'family' will get them if Mr. Gobblin doesn't.
She sends the vilolated daughter away for the night telling her to keep her mouth shut!
She confronts Mr. Gobblin when he comes home quite drunk as usual.
Mr. Gobblin admits his msideeds, then proceeds to beat the living -CENSORED--CENSORED--CENSORED--CENSORED--CENSORED- out of mommie saying if she calls the cops he'll kill them both.
He would.
He then goes to bed with his 14" single shot 12 bore, loaded with 1 1/4 oz of #5 shot. I forget the brand of ammo now.
This is normal for the pig, I mean Mr. Gobblin, to sleep with the loaded gun.
Mommie decides to run off, gather up the violated daughter and leave town and disappear.
First she decides to take the s.g. away from the passed out drunk Mr. Gobblin for fear if he wakes up he would shoot her in the back as she tries to leave.
Wise move, 'cause he would.
She quietly takes the gun by the stock and begins to pull it away from the sleeping animal, I mean Mr. gobblin, and lo and behold he wakes up, grabs the barrel and pulls it toward him and out of mommies grasp.
Fine and dandy except the gun was cocked and it went off!
Fortunately the barrel was pointed in a safe direction, right at the center of Mr. Gobblins chest!
Gobblin took the entire charge at near contact distance. We figured a mere inch or flat out contact.
Anyway the charge hit him just left of center of the sternum, angled to the right so that the charge hit to the left of the sternum, and angled to the right into the heart.
Mr. Gobblin was really, really, pissed!
He got out of bed and chased mommie across the bedroom swinging the discharged s.g. in an attempt to brain her.
Then he realized he was dead and appropriately acted as such.
I got called in from home to investigate.
I did the autopsie (yes police can do them if a coroner or pathologist is in the room in my State).
The heart and both lungs were shredded as you might imagine. The wads were lodged in what was left of the Gobblins heart. No shot passed through.
Trace metal tests on his hands indicated he did grab the s.g. barrel.
I wrote it up as an 'accidental' shooting.
The coroner and grand jury agreed.
Well you must understand the only story being told was told by the only living witness.
Case closed.
Mommie moved to another state to be with her family and got her daughter into counseling.

I went to the funeral.
After all they were friends of mine.:rolleyes: :rolleyes:

November 27, 2006, 10:19 AM
Jeager, great story, please keep them coming as you have time (plus it will help keep this great thread alive).

November 28, 2006, 08:54 PM
O.K. shappy.
This one was a hunting accident that happened just outside the city I policed.
I only became involved by assisting the game warden that investigated the incident.
The truth can really be stranger than fiction.
Two 15 year olds boys walked to a woods that bordered one edge of our town.
Both lived in the city and often walked to the woods lot to hunt squirrels after school.
One boy walked just ahead of his friend down a narrow path.
The boy in the lead was built rather small, about 5'6" and 120 pounds.
The boy in the lead spotted a squirrel, stopped, and turned to tell his buddy what he saw.
The buddy was looking down at the path, had his 12 gauge single shot pointed in front of him, pretty much parallel with the ground and right about level with the 1st boys navel.
The freakin' thing was cocked!
When the boy in the lead stopped and turned the gun carried by the 2nd boy pressed into his friends belly and discharged.
The boy in the lead took a contact wound to the belly. The load was 1 1/4 oz. #5 shot.
There was no cell phones in those days, no house or people nearby.
The boys walked almost 200 yards to the nearest road and flagged down a motorist for help.
The victim never lost consciousness.
He was examined and x-rayed, taken straight to o.r. where most of his bowel was removed. And a lot of other things one can evidently live without.
He lived.
Amazing, what?
Here's why. No major arteries were ruined. The gut was instantly turned into jelly. Anyone ever gut a deer or other animal and see the jellied innerds?
Same thing. The gore plugged the hole preventing blood loss to a degree.
Now understand the victim was near death, did loose a lot of blood and will poop in a bag for the rest of his life.
Go figure. That wound should have been fatal.
Wanna here more?
I understand that these things are pretty gross so if it's offensive to anyone, please say so.
Some of these things bother me to this day.

gordo b.
November 29, 2006, 11:51 AM
Well I've gone to all slugs for antipersonal purposes. Reduced recoil Remington slugs are plenty for the purpose and allow faster "splits" . I can hit a torso to 100 meters, and if you are not armored you are going down!I hit faces very well to 25 meters, which IS the limit of buckshot in the open so it is 'iffy'. Shotguns are very effective in and around buildings, if the barrel is short.Buck shot works well in rooms, but not for hostage shots, which is why I use slugs:cool:
I carried an Ithaca 37 LAPD riot gun, sent to me by my dad, in Vietnam in 1968-69 and with US Gubbamint brass 00 rounds, was the envy of many and it worked for me;)

November 29, 2006, 06:31 PM
I agree completely about the range for buck.
The thread is about the "combat" s.g.
If I were in an urban 'combat' situation I would opt for a proper rifle for many reasons.
However the s.g. can be used to good effect by a well trained and committed individual.
But it is a specialized, not a general purpose, weapon.

November 29, 2006, 10:57 PM
Jager --

Somewhere I have some x-rays of one of the nicest yellow labs you ever met that took a load of fine bird shot to the chest at muzzle contact range, dog lived, was adopted by the investigator who taged the sob who did it (he just did not want the dog anymore or was ticked off at it... like a lab is ever hard to find a home for) anyway it's a fantastic set of films because on the latteral it looks like oh my god who could survive that but on the v-d (front to back view) you can see 98% of the pelletts lodged in the chest wall muscles.

Dog did great with little treatment until kept getting an abcess at the site of the primary wound, finally poked around in there and pulled out the plastic shot wad

November 30, 2006, 06:46 PM
rsqvet, that is sick that somebody would do that to a non malicous dog, and its how some people are i guess. I think its interesting that those cases, jeager that both incidents had similar shotguns and ammunition. Makes me think twice about a single shot shotgun for a kid, but it is all about carelessness, and in the bgs case just how things turned out. Its a good thing to hear closure on his case though, people like that make me sick and it might sound offcentered but i believe he deserved to die for raping that teenage girl for all that time, and i guess it is a case where karma got the better of him