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Old October 6, 2011, 07:35 AM   #1
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If I were to consider purchasing a shotgun strictly for home defense, what would be a good one to get? I have no experience whatsoever with a shotgun. Also, how would you conceal it somewhere close by where you can get to it quickly and yet it's in a safe spot otherwise? Any input would be appreciated.
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Old October 6, 2011, 08:51 AM   #2
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There is many considerations for you...
First off... I do not promote the use of chinese knockoffs for anything but a toy.

Mossberg has the safety located atop the frame... remington has a crossbolt safety. Both are very proven and qualified for HD...

Price goes up fast with Benelli, Beretta etc... I suggest a pump for your first HD shotgun.

As for hiding it... I have home made gun rack hooks made of 1X6 pine on my closet wall. I also set a gun against the inside of closet so I can reach in and grab it.

I don't always have it hid either... There are times it/they may be beside the bed.

There is also a nice little gem...

Bed side rack hidden by made bed blanket/spread

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Old October 6, 2011, 09:12 AM   #3
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Mossberg 930 - I like the plain Jane models but the 930 SPX is all "pimped-out." Reliable and the best deal for the $$$. With the semi-auto you will shoot faster and have less recoil.
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Old October 6, 2011, 11:19 AM   #4
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Before you buy anything, you may want to take a shotgun HD course and try what they have there to see what will work best for you - it might be a SxS, a pump, or an auto - personal preference plays a big part in selection
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Old October 6, 2011, 12:44 PM   #5
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I have wondered about that bed rack that hogdogs mentions. I don't know if I like it or not, but I do not agree with one thing said on its web site.

The shotgun provides a wide spray. With a handgun you need to be a great shot, in the dark, laying in your bed. And, if you miss the bullet penetrates walls and could hurt parties in other rooms or houses. That is why many experts will tell you the best weapon is a Shotgun.
This has been discussed time and time agoain and all agree that a shotgun does not provide a wide spray. You also have to be concerned that any pellets that miss the target will indeed penetrate walls and hurt persons in other rooms and houses, the risk of which is greater with some loads than others.
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Old October 6, 2011, 01:56 PM   #6
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Do not buy anything yet.

Head for your local ranges. A polite new shooter will get lots of advice and some shotguns to try. Some ranges also rent guns.

After you've shot a little, you'll have a better idea of what will work for you.

Caveat, shotguns are incredibly effective defensive tools, when used by shotgunners. If you want to be effective with a shotgun, that means paying some dues.....
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Old October 6, 2011, 03:17 PM   #7
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The shotgun provides a wide spray
At HD distances, that "spray" can be as small as a baseball - plenty easy to miss
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Old October 6, 2011, 03:28 PM   #8
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Take some general defensive classes - handguns and shotguns....and see where you want to take this whole idea.

There isn't anything wrong with a good tactical pump gun - if that's what you want ( personally, I have no use for such a gun ...) not to say, that I wouldn't keep a shotgun around if I thought I needed one / I have plenty of pump guns with 28" barrels - that could be "defensive" if I wanted them to be ....but they're not "fighting shotguns" either ...but then I rely on my 1911 handguns for defense ...

A lot of my son's buddies ( all in their 30's ) went thru the same issue you're dealing with in the last 5 yrs or so ...and most of them bought pump guns ( remington, mossbergs, etc with short barrels - and all of them shot them a little - maybe 100 shells thru them / all have fixed choke barrels on them). And just by way of conversation - in the last 3 yrs - not one of those guys has fired that "tactical shotgun" ...and they're all investing in better "clays" shotguns ...and turning more to handguns, that they carry, for defense - and while they all thought they "had to have a tactical shotgun" - they all regret the purchase. So if you want one - shop the used gun stores ---there are buckets full of them for sale all over ...
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Old October 6, 2011, 03:45 PM   #9
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Take the courses

Test different models

Then buy the 930 SPX
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Old October 6, 2011, 03:46 PM   #10
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What's your budget?

It's all the difference between a new semiautomatic Benelli or a used single shot.

There is a neat safe just big enough for a long gun and a pistol. I'm trying to remember what it's called .
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Old October 7, 2011, 03:52 PM   #11
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Mossberg Bullpup 500

Here's one of the best 12 gauge HD shotguns I've ever owned. It's very accurate on your shoulder, has combat sights, and is easy to reach around corners with. If you ever find one, grab it!

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Old October 7, 2011, 05:01 PM   #12
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oh, that's just peachy...
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Old October 7, 2011, 05:27 PM   #13
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As a LH, I suspect the BP design would result in my getting a sore cheek from the empties

A regular, wood-stocked shotgun will do everything you need from a shotgun just fine
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Old October 7, 2011, 06:07 PM   #14
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"A regular, wood-stocked shotgun will do everything you need from a shotgun just fineā€¦." And, IMHO will look a lot better if you are unfortunate enough to have to go before a Grand Jury for shooting a BG.
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Old October 7, 2011, 08:12 PM   #15
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If you are on a limited budget you might consider a NEF Pardner Pump. It's essentially a Chinces clone of an 870 only with a better finish and heavier parts. I have an 870 Express too and both have been excellent shotguns. The Remington is more refined but the NEF is more robust. I have an extension on the NEF allowing to hold 7 in the tube. You can buy a 870 that will hold that many straight from the factory. Both make for excellent HD weapons. I actually like being able to take the mag extension off so I can put a plug in the tube so I can hunt with my NEF. But the 870 allows me to swap barrels easily while the NEF doesn't. They could be swapped easily if I could find them. Finding barrels for the 870 is incredibly easy. Remington had to hold back something on the NEF models. They did buy out that company because they were building 870 clones cheaper than the original in Express form.

People might try to tell you an Express will rust easily. Might sure hasn't. I've had it 4 years and it doesn't have a speck of rust on it. I've seen people from another board swear up and down that an 870 Express was junk but every word they said about them turned out to be wrong. Mine still works perfect and it hasn't rusted a bit.

BTW Mossberg also makes excellent shotguns in the same price range. The NEF models have been the cheapest I've seen though. I've seen them for under $180 at Walmart but they only get them in at certain times of the year.
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Old October 9, 2011, 08:15 AM   #16
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I would go with a Pump-Action 12GA. Remington 870's and Mossberg 500's are one of the more common choices for people. I have both, I dislike the Mossberg for 2 reasons, the forend rattles like two skeletons having sex in a metal trashcan and the receiver is aluminum (Lots-O-Dings), but I love the tang safety on the mossberg. My Remington 870 has tighter tolerances regarding the forend, and I don't mind the crossbolt safety. Also, keep in mind that your shotgun doesn't "need" to be tacticool. I have the regular ol' bead sight, and carry 3" OO buckshot, 2 3/4 shells are "recommended" for HD in apartments or houses are closer together, but the choice is obviously yours. If it doesn't make you more proficient then don' get it (mag extension, side saddle,
flashlight/ laser, shell bandoleers, sling and anything of that nature) slings get caught in the dark, under stress you will probably fumble with a flashlight/ laser, too many extra rounds will weigh you down. Just keep it simple. Also, grab a few different loads: buckshot, #4, Low recoil and rounds made for HD, and run them through your shotgun to get a feel for whats comfortable for you.

Good luck.
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Old October 9, 2011, 07:15 PM   #17
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I will stay with a field grade pump or auto instead of a modified shotgun because if you have to use it and go in frount of a jury I want them to see it as the same gun that dad or a uncle had when they were kids not a dreaded assault weapon Just my opinion Randy
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Old October 13, 2011, 07:36 PM   #18
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Mossberg 500. Most reliable, ergonomic, least expensive and higher capacity common shotgun. Just change the safety button to steel.

"The Backup" is a fine product IF you use it on the side of the bed by a wall or where someone probably won't lift the cover to see what's under the bed when robbing the house. That, and proped up in the corner of the closet, is where EVERYONE puts their shotguns. I'll share one of two other ideas with you. Hang it in the closet from a good hanger, you can i.d. easily, in some long clothes.
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Old October 13, 2011, 07:54 PM   #19
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The plastic safety tab of the M-500 moss is noting to scoff at! Tell me when you last saw a steel football helmet...

My current M-500 is 20+ years old.. spent 11 years in an evidence room... But before and after... no charmed life... Much of the use could even be considered SEVERE DUTY and that plastic tab just refuses to give up the ghost for me to be required to buy a metal replacement...

It was once so dirty I used a tree trunk as a "thumb" to move it fore and aft...

If'n it ain't broke... don't fix it...

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Old October 13, 2011, 08:06 PM   #20
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Here's a thread that Dave asked me to write after a fine defensive shotgun course:

Has some of Tom's advice and how to train to use it effectively. Take to heart those who posted above about getting a touch of training. Don't buy the no-aim superweapon stories.
NRA, TSRA, IDPA, NTI, Polite Soc. - Aux Armes, Citoyens
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Being an Active Shooter
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Old October 14, 2011, 09:43 AM   #21
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Take a look at and consider buying the DVD that this is a sampler for - IMHO it's a good basic introduction to the use of a shotgun for self defense. It won't replace hands-on training from a good instructor but it will give you some insight into the things you're getting into for the first time.

The shotgun itself (brand, action type etc.) doesn't really matter as much as the ability of person who is using it. No firearm is a magic talisman that will ward off evil by its very presence - and there are lots of myths surrounding the shotgun as a defensive firearm. Shotguns still have to be operated properly and the shooter has to be able to hit what they shoot at, if worst comes to worst.


Mindset - Skillset - Toolset. In that order!

Attitude and skill will get you through times of no gear, better than gear will get you through times of no attitude and no skill.
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Old October 14, 2011, 02:36 PM   #22
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I like clint smith videos and he is an excellent person to learn from.
I would also take into consideration about safety of family members in other rooms as someone mentioned. I would take classes as well.
Safety is huge in my house.
I have also had a home invader and it is scary. I am a woman and was home alone with my daughter. The guy walked right by her and I am thinking he didn't even see her sleeping on couch.
He took my purse and went out front door. I was sleeping and he actually came up to the top of the stairs. I thought I was having a nightmare, actually I closed my eyes and rolled over counting to 10, praying to God that I was dreaming somehow thinking it was real!!. I rolled back over and opened my eyes slowly. I thought it was a dream.
But, it was not.
Not after arising early at 7 am stumbling to the refrigerator, then jumping with eyes buldged out looking at the back door wide open and turning to find my purse gone! scariest part of story is my daughter was sleeping so soundly that I called her several times and my heart dropped. I thought she was dead. I shook the geebies out her and she awoke. I remembering saying OMG are you alright and did you move my purse"!? Once, she fully awaken I remember her saying," OMG, so some stranger walked right by me as I was sleeping?!"
Terrible went on after calling the police and not thinking clearly that also the police never showed up, so I call state police, they yelled get out of the house immediately. ugh,,,, never had it happen so wasn't really thinking he could of still been inside!
I am very luckily. I don't think I could of even fought him off if he had done anything I had surgery 2 wks previous and was so sick.
I had always wanted a gun but decided to buy sensor lights instead and a cheapy loud as sin alarm that simply goes on the back door and when the magnet is seperated on the door jam an ear piercing sound goes off.
I also double check doors nightly the last 4yrs now.
I presently I have inquired my mother's shotgun. I have squirrel shot for target shooting, going out to have a guy coach me how to shoot it correctly (only shot a shotgun once in my life). I feel right in knowing that I will be able to shoot it correctly.
But have a lock installed on the bedroom and even though my dog is trained to attack I would most likely huddle with her in the closet ( the night this happened, dog actually was under window air conditioner never heard the guy going up the stairs ). I take my phone to bed every night and put it on the night stand.
I live in a good neighborhood but that's the ones that get burgularized too.
I don't even think I could shoot a person really.
I visited a local gunshop yesterday , they had nice priced shotguns.
And for home defense a guy showed me a Taurus, called "The Judge" that was an awesome handgun. And you will have to check the shot out that's used in it. I thought it was over kill though.
But for me, really, safety first. You can make a gun holder for the wall beside the bed if you feel that you are unsafe.
good luck
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Old October 14, 2011, 02:37 PM   #23
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Old October 14, 2011, 02:49 PM   #24
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buckshot at 25yds
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Old October 14, 2011, 08:07 PM   #25
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Guns are an important part of the safety equasion, but for a single mom with a daughter you might want to talk with someone from a local police agency about lights such as exterior floods, trimming bushes by window, locks and things. Perhpas a better alarm system and one with a panic button. Locking the door (with sound locks) and hiding in the closet while waiting for the police, with a gun, is good. I think the Taurus Judge is a mistake, but will let the experienced guys advise you on that.

What I am curious about is how did the guy get in. During heat waves folk all too often make the mistake of leaving doors open, with nothing but a flimsy screen door secured with a hook latch.
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