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Best Ammo for Shotgun?

Discussion in 'General Firearm Discussion' started by markmouFF, Jul 16, 2010.

  1. markmouFF

    markmouFF Wilsonville, Oregon New Member

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    Just bought my first Shotgun, a Mossberg 500 persuader. I would appreciate any thoughts on the best shell's for home defense?

    Total nubie to firearms. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks
     
  2. itgoesboom

    itgoesboom Hillsboro Member

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    Each shotgun will have it's own preference when it comes to patterning, so you will just have to try a few brands, and see how they do.

    For defensive purposes, any 00 Buck would be good, plated would be better. Odds are Federal Premium with the flight control wad will pattern the best, but, you will just have to try it out yourself.
     
  3. markmouFF

    markmouFF Wilsonville, Oregon New Member

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    Is the Federal Premium with flight control wad the one they call V something Shok? I heard something about that.
     
  4. The Quiet Man

    The Quiet Man rural Washington County, Oregon Active Member

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    You are asking more than you realize. What is your housing situation? Apartment/condo? Single family in the city? Rural? How close are your neighbors? What's correct in one situation may be incorrect in others. Share a little more about your situation and you'll have more "help" than you need :)
    Congrats on your new purchase. I have the same shotgun in 20 guage and like it a lot. You need to get it out and practice with it so you know how to run it without thinking, and know what it is going to do when you need it.
     
  5. HalfNutz

    HalfNutz Kirkland (Juanita) Member

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    I prefer #4 shot... deadly at 30 yards, but won't kill a neighbor through walls like .30 shot can in the same situation. If you put half your #4 shot load on target at 30 yards (90 ft) you will immediately stop any aggressive action. You want to stop the threat, not kill innocents.
     
  6. markmouFF

    markmouFF Wilsonville, Oregon New Member

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    Quiet man, I have no doubt I am asking more than I realize :) Right now I am not even sure what I should be asking.

    I live in an upstairs 4 unit condo right now. 1158sf. Nearest condo (from our 4 unit) is about 30 feet. It is a suburban golf community with 2000 homes and Condo's.

    Our County Sheriff's have an indoor range with a multitude of reasonably priced courses from beginner to advanced I will be attending as soon as I get the barrel broken in on the shotgun and the Ruger Blackhawk 41 Mag I purchased today..

    Thanks so much all for contributing.
     
  7. itgoesboom

    itgoesboom Hillsboro Member

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  8. Riot

    Riot Benton County, Washington Well-Known Member

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    My Mossy 590 loved Brenneke KO Slugs...I'll have to get some more when I can. The 2 3/4" kicked more than the 3" mags! I Also was able to hit a siloutte 100M target out of a smoothbore during a 3-gun match. Fun times...

    Currently I'm going to try out some of these Centurions specifically for home defense...almost like a buckshot/slug combo.
     
  9. The Quiet Man

    The Quiet Man rural Washington County, Oregon Active Member

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    Good information with a place to start. Obviously, you want to stop an attacker but not put projectiles into your neighbors condo or house. Do you have shared walls with another condo in your building? What are they made from. Shotguns can blow right through standard drywall interior walls without much trouble but have more difficulty as the amount and strength of barriers within the walls increase. Exterior walls vary considerably based on material. Windows don't offer much resistance. Larger, heavier shot (those with lower numbers) increase penetration while the lighter (higher numbered) shot doesn't penetrate as effectively. The small shot doesn't penetrate people as well either so there is a trade off. The link "itgoesboom" provided is an excellent place to start. Spend some time considering that information and then ask away.

    Buy some inexpensive, light birdshot rounds and get some trigger time in to get the feel for your new purchase. I'm glad to hear you're willing to attend some classes as you will undoubtedly benefit from the experience. I live in a rural environment with no close neighbors to worry about so my loads would not be as good a choice for you due to penetration concerns.
     
  10. markmouFF

    markmouFF Wilsonville, Oregon New Member

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    Thanks itgoesboom. Good info on the web site. I am definitely re-thinking those "SHOK" rounds as the penetration seems to be quite good.

    Quiet man, I am quite sure an errant shot would be disastrous for my neighbors. If it ever came to that I would hope the incredibly loud sound of a round being chambered would be a sufficient deterrent.

    I hope I am not crossing any lines by saying this but my wife is very upset and more than worried about recently ending up on the Black Panthers web site just because she re-posted a video of one of them talking about killing crackers and cracker babies.

    For some reason she didn't feel quite as safe having only my bow and black powder rifle here...hmmm

    Thanks again all :)
     
  11. madcratebuilder

    madcratebuilder Ardenwald, OR Well-Known Member

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    Buy a few boxes of cheap bird shoot to get the feel of your gun. I would recommend #4 for your living situation, anything larger could penetrate into other living areas. save the slugs and 00 buck for range fun.
     
  12. The Quiet Man

    The Quiet Man rural Washington County, Oregon Active Member

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    Shooting your neighbors by mistake is still considered unsportsmanlike conduct in most circles, so birdshot is your best bet at mitigating that possibility. 4 or 6 shot would be good bets with me leaning toward the #6 for your circumstances as I understand them. I lived in suburbia when I bought my little 20 guage Mossy, and now you understand why. As to the sound of a round being chambered, yes it may stop someone who is in a normal state of mind and thinking clearly. However, how many home invasions are conducted by people in a normal state of mind? If you rack the slide, you had better be ready to and justified in shooting. A huge social responsiblity comes with arming yourself, and there is an old saying regarding the attorney that is attached to every bullet you fire. It applies to fired birdshot also.

    As to your wife's activity, deliberately poking any hate group in the eye is generally not a good idea. However, if that is what it takes for her to realize that there are very bad people living right among us who would not think twice about killing for very little gain... well it should be a lesson well learned. Drawing the attention of violent/intimidating types, or provoking them for that matter, is something I avoid. There is no safe place once you paint a target on your own back.
     
  13. Boris Bush

    Boris Bush Tacoma Member

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    No matter the situation safety is always the number one concern. Period.

    Do a dry run and learn where you could do harm to others through walls by walking your house and learn what areas of the house are safe to shoot down or through.

    #4 birdshot or OOO buck, it will all go through walls, and if and when it does, it can injure or kill anyone or anything on the other side. Once you learn where it is safe to shoot make a mental note and make a physical record of it by drawing it. Once a week do a dry run. You dont even need the street howitzer for the dry run.

    After you figured out what lanes are safe, get the most effective ammo you can get and go shoot at the range the exact distances you would be shooting in your house so YOU know what load does what at the exact distance YOU will be shooting at.

    Even then the shotgun is best used as a defensive weapon. You will most likely be static and behind cover. Dresser or bed. Best bet is to be kneeling, your shots will be angled towards the cieling and go into the atic. There is no need to compromise on ammo if you preplan your shots and stick to them and use the home defense shotgun in a true defensive roll, a static roll.

    For me I settled on Remington 16 pellet #1 buck. Dense perfect size pattern at the ranges I will be shooting at.

    Learn your house and shooting lanes, do NOT settle on compromise ammo like vermin shot. I have seen teeny tiny rabbits take more than one load of #4 shot and keep running. No effing way my defense shotgun will be loaded with ammo that might not stop a rabbit that weighs 2 pounds.

    If you need reduced effectiveness rounds to improve your safety of others, you will also put a compromise on your own. Learn when where and how to shoot, then get ammo that will get the job done....
     
  14. The Quiet Man

    The Quiet Man rural Washington County, Oregon Active Member

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    As with rifle and handgun caliber opinions, many folks have strongly held beliefs pertaining to shot size, guage, barrel length, etc. My experience with many hundreds of shot rabbits differs rather substantially from Boris' but I'm not arguing about it. I suspect there is a lot of shotgun penetration info on the internet regarding shooting within a home. If not, you might consider reading a book by Tony Lesce entitled "The Shotgun in Combat" which was published in 1979. It's surely out of print but I know copies are available on EBay, and likely other sources. He explores and tests the subject in detail along with lots of pictures. It is a good read for anyone with plans to use a shotgun for self-defense. I have also recently seen a show on TV (Best Defense?) where they did the same thing. Watch the "Outdoor Channel" on Wednesday and you might catch an episode. Shotgun efficiency has not changed much over the years as long as you are using lead shot. Better yet, go shoot some drywall and get a feel for what different size shot does at close range. It is an eye-opening experience.
     
  15. Murphy

    Murphy Oregon Member

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    Excellent point.

    ANY shotgun load will penetrate multiple walls in your home and will injure/kill anything on the other side.

    Be sure of your backstop so you can minimize the injury to those innocents downrange.

    As The Quiet Man stated above, go test different loads on drywall and see what you are comfortable with. You will be absolutely stunned to see how much penetration will occur with a 12 gauge. The firearms academy of seattle has a video that is incorporated into one of their shotgun courses and it deals with this exact issue.
     
  16. Wenis

    Wenis Tri-Cities, WA Member

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    :bluelaugh:

    You could load your mossberg with increasingly more penetration shells
     
  17. Cameron.44

    Cameron.44 Eugene Member

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    12 GAUGE Ammo : Ammunition To Go
    I'm surprised no one had mentioned this stuff earlier.
    If I was in an apartment/condo situation, this is defiantly what I would run. But have that .41mag at the ready once they are incapacitated in case you unfortunately needed something more lethal.
     
  18. itgoesboom

    itgoesboom Hillsboro Member

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    First, by using less than lethal you are opening yourself up legally to bad things. Because you are in essence saying that you didn't feel justified in using lethal force, but at the same time, by using a firearm, you are using lethal force.

    Second, once they are incapacitated they are no longer a threat, and therefore there isn't justification for lethal force.
     
  19. BillyDa59

    BillyDa59 King County, WA Member

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    I have very little (no) experience with what ammo works best in a home defense situation. I believe the military and police use 00 buckshot though. Seems like a good choice.
     
  20. Cameron.44

    Cameron.44 Eugene Member

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    Read it again, APARTMENT/CONDO situation, as in you don't feel justified using lethal force on the guy through the 6in wall. I don't know about you but I sure wouldn't. I personally use 00 Buck in my home defense weapon. But I have no neighbors cept 50+yrds out, and just because they are down dose NOT mean they are out. And anyway you look at it you are going to have a legal trail 5 miles long, especially if you hit someone that was not intended with lethal force, you would be legally responsible.