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Old November 20, 1999, 08:57 PM   #26
Douglas in CT
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And now, a short summation...(zzz)

It is apparant that we agree that each tool has a specific function and utilty:
that in close quarters (such as Home Defense) the shotgun is king, and at greater distances the rifle (Ar-15 et al.) becomes the weapon of choice.

The flame-thrower just would not be my weapon of choice inside most light wood frame constructed homes (can you say house fire?).

~Douglas in CT

[This message has been edited by Douglas in CT (edited November 20, 1999).]
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Old November 22, 1999, 10:12 PM   #27
Edmund Rowe
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My point about Agent Mireles and the shotgun (I think he propped it across the corner of a car bumper) is that a shotgun does not magically end the fight. That gunfight brought one-handed gunfighting to the attention of the professional firearm instruction community.

If you read Jim Cirillo's experiences of NYCPD stakeout unit gunfights, he also stresses that sometimes perps are shot with 12 gauge slugs and remain unimpressed for a very disturbing length of time.

My point being that it's the man, not the gun that wins the fight, and what's between your ears is what saves your butt.


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Old November 23, 1999, 12:41 AM   #28
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For an detailed description of gunshot wounds in the Miami shootout see


Anyone worth shooting, is worth shooting twice...
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Old November 23, 1999, 04:57 AM   #29
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Ed I agree, and have read Ayoob saying simialar thing about some people "hangin around for a while" after being shot by slug.
In these situ's
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Old April 30, 2005, 05:33 AM   #30
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I've been in the military for a few years now, I've had a lot of range time with 9mms, A2s, M4s, mp5s, 249s and a lot of other fun stuff, and at three hundred yards I cant hit a sihloet with iron sights. Your first step should always be to assess what you are possibly up against and your environment, then determine the range of apropriate weapons and which one you are best suited to. If you might need to shoot past say 30 - 40 yards especially in the dark, a shotgun might not be your best choice, maybe an ar carbine with a night scope, if you live in an apartment lean towards a handgun (something like a 45 with soft ammo that doesn't penetrate much but decimates flesh) or shotgun. Personally I keep an off the shelf 870 shortbarrel with 6 #4 2 3/4 in the tube and one in on the button, and a good supply of (an assortment [slugs, buckshot, birdshot]) ammo nearby, and training,training, training.
Oh, and don't go out and get a 12 gauge if you can't handle it. If your thinking about it, go down to the local gun club and ask if you can try somebody's I'm sure they would be more than happy to accomidate you. pick something that you are comfortable with, but also pick something that fits your needs.
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Old April 30, 2005, 08:24 AM   #31
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All I have to say in this matter is that should you, after being rudely awakened by a career criminal trying to burgle your castle, shoot said perp in the arse with a load of #7.5 birdshot the local constabulary will have a hard time suppressing their amusement as they haul him away in pain.

I doubt all but the most slimy lipped DA's will probably decline to prosecute you for your act.

An AR will not have the same effect.
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Old April 30, 2005, 03:37 PM   #32
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Why not both? A good 12ga for the hallway. But if you need more range or need to penetrate something pull the AR off your back. I guess only in a pefect world.
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Old April 30, 2005, 08:47 PM   #33
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Not at all, benzo1355...

And herein lies the rub: Originally Bennett Richard's post was:
Residents of the Tactic-l list have been involed in a heated discussion as to whether the AR carbine and it's variations are FAR superior to the Shotgun in MOST home defense situations. Many of the contributors agree ( many of these guys are professional instructors...)
I note that these "Professionals" chose the AR and most of our own (who preface thier posts with things like "I am not a professional" or "my two cents" etc) do not have the real life experience that they folks do. (may) I also believe our folks to be very knowledgeable when it comes to firearms and happen to think in this case they are right, but for specific reasons.

I fall into the professional category and prefer to take my AR with me whenever conducting a raid or building search. Why? Nothing to do with caliber, as I consider the .223 to be a viable alternative to the 12 ga, but my choice is based on the fluidity of the situation. It may spill over into the street beyond and the ranges increase. Inside some of the buildings I enter may pose ranges at well over 35-50 feet. There is also the slight chance that covering fire may need to be applied in a bad situation and since there will be friends with me. And my AR is set up with better sights and light capabilities to handle targeting problems. I am very confident and comfortable with the gun. I will have hearing protection and body armor in such instances.

On the other hand, my 11-87 Remington is what I have at hand at home. For ranges inside MY house, it is adecuate and there is little chance of me taking the situation to the street if I ever have to use it. Additionally I do recognize the courtroom appearance of the scatter gun being more benign. I will likely be alone or with the wife, who will have a handgun, but remain in a defended position. I am very comfortable with the gun and getting more confident with it as time goes by. (Fairly new - only bought it a couple of months ago) Is it a better weapon for defensive purposes because of these things? No, but it fits the situation of home defense a little better in my opinion... But just a little.

So the original opinion of all those "professionals?" Valid - they use what they are most comfortable and familiar with. It will work.

TFL's consensus? Valid - we will use what we are most comfortable and familiar with. It will work too.

I'll use both, but not at the same time - to much chance of my slings fouling each other!!
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Old May 1, 2005, 12:58 AM   #34
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For general home defense(that meaning a situation where I'd have to act fastest, the shotgun is prefered(at least for me) for the following reasons:

1) BG is less likly to survive(Bad people don't need to live, and they definatly don't need to be sueing)

2) Its pretty fool proof, and less prone to the dumb mistakes

Though, for all other situations and for situations where I could think on it, I would go for a rifle as its what I am most comfortable with.
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Old May 1, 2005, 01:47 AM   #35
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Box Of Truth
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Old May 1, 2005, 05:36 AM   #36
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excellent link Lycanthrope

for real 5.56 performance there's also the ammo oracle at:

and an article on 5.56 for urban use at:

lots of good information out there to make intelligent choices.
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Old May 1, 2005, 09:32 AM   #37
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AR carbine vs. 12 Gauge

Let's see....

AR-15 (any type) - 30 round magazine = 30 projectiles downrange.

12ga Shotgun - 6 rds 00 buck @9 pellets ea = 54 projectiles downrange.

Nuff said?
BillCA in CA (Unfortunately)
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Old May 1, 2005, 11:47 AM   #38
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i've heard pros say they think a shotgun is the absolute best thing at close range. i don't know how big all your houses are, but i doubt you've got a hallway longer than 20 yards. shots longer than that and i'd assume you live on a farm and the guy is running the hell away into the corn while you're shooting. shooting him at that point is only going to get your own butt thrown into jail. even if you live in a state with fair gun laws that lets you shoot at people after they have ceased to pose a threat, you're still likely looking at a pretty bothersome civil suit from the criminal's survivors. the only situation where i'd pick an AR for home defense is if that team of ninjas breaks in. one or two guys i'd feel safest with my 12ga in hand and .40 on hip.
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Old May 1, 2005, 12:32 PM   #39
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The longest straight shot in the house is 24'. The longest back yard shot is 45'. The longest overall shot is from the driveway to the sidewalk/street and frankly if I shoot someone that far, things must have really gone EOTW wrong.

At the 7 ~ 16 yards I will be shooting, keeping 8 pellets of 00 inside 6" patterns is not an issue. A 12 guage just makes sense.

It I was in a more rural setting and property protection was an issue, I would keep a carbine handy. I live in urban Los Angeles. Form and function means my 870 is the one handy and my carbines and rifles are in the safe.

On the other hand, a slicked Marlin lever action carbine in .44 or .45LC makes for a decent house gun too. Just need to get a light mount for it....

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Old May 2, 2005, 01:40 PM   #40
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Hostage situation

Don't forget that a familiy member can easily be used as a BG's shield in a homde defese situation. If so, even a pistol is better for a precise shot than a shotgun...
I have a 12ga and 00 ready but I do believe that it is only a good choice for very few situations...
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If you want peace - prepare for war
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