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Old February 22, 2012, 09:14 AM   #77
Bartholomew Roberts
Senior Member
Join Date: June 12, 2000
Location: Texas and Oklahoma area
Posts: 6,782
Originally Posted by orthosopy
It will certainly do the job through an interior hollow core door. I think any argument about the ballistic capabilities of a shotshell that isn't buckshot are pretty pointless at HD ranges. Walk your GF's place...I'd be surprised if there is longer than a 10 yard uninterrupted run.
They aren't pointless at all and #6 shot is a poor choice for a variety of reasons. It seems to me that you are measuring your weapon's effectiveness based on what it can do to a hollow core dore. I'm willing to bet a grown man could probably put his fist through a hollow core dore. Never seen a grown man put his fist through another man's sternum.

As we've discussed here numerous times, there are three ways a firearm stops somebody from continuing an attack:

1. It stops the upper central nervous system from functioning through direct damage.

2. It causes unconscious by reducing the blood flow to the upper central nervous system via massive blood loss which can only be achieved by poklng holes in large, blood bearing organs.

3. Through pain or fear, it causes the attacker to choose to discontinue the attack.

The first two are physiological - no matter what choice your attacker makes, he will stop attacking because his body is not physically capable of functioning. The third is psychological - it relies on the attacker's mental state to be effective.

If you are seeking to stop an attacker via #1 or #2 above, the targets you are trying to reach are usually surrounded by bone, muscle, fat and ligament that can be significantly tougher than a hollow-core door in an apartment or a piece of drywall. Light birdshot will often be inadequate to reach these structures - this is one reason why less-lethal ammunitions like beanbags are basically #9-#7.5 shot encased in a cloth pouch - because this size shot has very poor penetration and you don't want less lethal ammo to penetrate.

Moving up to #6 shot and cloth casing increases penetration; but you are still looking at around 5" of penetration in BARE JELLO on average. Put a hollow core door, piece of drywall, appliance or even a jacket in front of that and your margin for error is gone.

Originally Posted by Bill DeShivs
Your comments are irresponsible.
I disagree, probably because he is making the same point I am - #6 birdshot doesn't have enough penetration to be reliably achieve stops via #1 or #2 above unless you get a perfect profile:

1. Average sized male
2. Unobstructed chest shot from front or back only
3. Light clothing or no clothing at all
4. Range less than 15'

And as IrishB's anecdote indicates, even then birdshot will still occasionally fail to do the job. So I don't see how that comment is irresponsible.

Most 20 gauge shotgun blasts to the chest within 10 feet would prove fatal.
IrishB's anecdote is by no means the only one out there where shotgun blasts to the chest or head at 10 feet were not only not fatal; but failed to stop the person shot from running, fighting back, or continuing to function. Can it immediately stop people? You bet. Can it kill people, even through walls? Again, it sure can. Will any heavier shot have a better chance of stopping someone immediately? Yes, it will. How muich margin for error does #6 shot have before it stops being effective? Not a whole hell of a lot.
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