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Better over all protection 870 or ar-15

Discussion in 'General Firearm Discussion' started by manakiah, Feb 5, 2010.

  1. manakiah

    manakiah Issaquah Wa Member

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    Just trying to get some other opions. What is better for overall protection Remington 870 Express or Ar-15 doesn't matter the make. Thanks Jason
     
  2. ZachS

    ZachS Eugene/PDX Active Member

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    I think it really depends on your situation. I live in the middle of a city in a small apartment. I have an AR, but I've come to realize that it wouldn't be as useful as a shotgun (or even a pistol) in most SHTF/self defense situations I might face.

    If I lived in the country or the suburbs, my needs would be different.
     
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  3. itgoesboom

    itgoesboom Hillsboro Member

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    Here's the first issue: The make does matter, as does the configuration. A varmint AR is a poor HD rifle, as is a sub-par build from a low-end manufacturer.

    The second issue is that you are comparing two firearms that are in vastly different cost brackets, with probably close to $500 difference in cost, and $500 buys a lot of ammo and other gear.

    Down to the basic question, which is better? Both can be quite capable.

    The AR-15 has the advantage of being more accurate, faster to shoot, faster to reload, more capacity, less recoil, and the terminal ballistics of quality ammo is very impressive.

    The shotgun is simple to use, inexpensive, and the terminal ballistics of buckshot is something that can't be argued against.

    The AR-15, assuming a quality build, and an appropriate configuration, is probably the better of the two.
     
  4. hondakilla98

    hondakilla98 beaverton, or Active Member

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    870 and ak would be a more fair comparison cost wise.
     
  5. huntpotter

    huntpotter SW WA Negotiator Bronze Supporter

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    I voted 870 only because you can pole axe a giant with 12 balls of 00 buck, from a 3-1/2 magnum. Or 9 balls of 00 buck from a 3".

    AR, you can carry much more ammo, with the same weight. But for purely defence, it's 12ga.

    If the engagement range is moving out beyond 30 yds, then AR would be better.
     
  6. Spitpatch

    Spitpatch Forest Grove, Oregon Well-Known Member

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    No question in my mind: the 870. For this very important reason (too often forgotten by those choosing a home defense weapon):

    Fired inside your home, the 870 probably won't kill a neighbor.
     
  7. Ding

    Ding Lighter Side of Oz Active Member

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    Scattergun,can't beat the hole or mess it leaves in close quarters.
     
  8. Boats

    Boats Flicking A Switch To Open My Third Eye Well-Known Member

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    The real answer to the question is this: Mossberg 590.:D

    Why take a bird gun or a varmint rifle to a gun fight? From its non pinching shell lifter to its ambidextrous tang safety, the Mossberg was built as a fighting shotgun, not cobbled together out of a modified wing shooter.:winkkiss:
     
  9. Friskyou

    Friskyou Forest grove New Member

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    Kinda open ended question... Depends on under what circumstances your defending your self.
    If you mean home security for the burgler/bad guy, the 870 is a better bet. Low light sight picture, less over-penatration, better close quarters weapon, plus the 870 makes that awsome sound when loaded that will send 95% (or more) intruders running the other direction.

    If SHTF and your on the run, again I say the 870 because of the same reasons I had above. Your likley not going to be offensive (if your smart) and your contacts will be accidental at close range.

    Now Zombies are another matter, you want that AR while your sitting on Bi-marts roof drinkin warm beer and rackin up the score :)
     
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  10. Gunner3456

    Gunner3456 Salem Well-Known Member

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    The OP didn't ask about home defense. He never mentioned "home." He asked about "overall protection." I'll take the AR.

    If the SHTF I have about a 300 yard sweep to protect. A bullet fired anywhere within my house couldn't hit a neighbors house no matter how well it penetrated walls. Our terrain and distance prevents it.

    For "overall protection" a shotgun simply has too limited of a range.

    That said, I have a Winchester Defender with 00 buck close at hand for indoor social work. I do appreciate its value at close range, but if I have to look outside or go outside in a SHTF time, it will be with the AR.

    Don't underestimate the terminal ballistics or tumbling devastation of the 5.56.

    $.02
     
  11. Trlsmn

    Trlsmn In Utero (Portland) Well-Known Member

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    It depends on whether I'm shooting within the house or out the window.
     
  12. saltydog73

    saltydog73 NW Oregon New Member

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    When talking about protection, first are you talking about inhome protection ?? I'm in the process of reading "The truth about self protection" by Massad Ayoob..granted it is somewhat dated but he says,

    The usual situation is that self defence is a close quarters situations. The rifle is not well suited for close quarters, on the battlefield yes but for civilian combat no way.

    Using the shotgun. While not As easily handled in close quarter situations shotguns are more easily owned then in states that have restrictions on handgun ownership.

    Shotgun types. Double barrell shotguns are sometimes recommended because of their ease of manipulations and the fact that a felon (bad guy) will be facing 2 large bore barrels. He recommends the Stevens model 311. keep in mind the material is dated and there is most likely another model similar. Apparently this one is a tried and true.

    For those interested in a pump, the Mossberg model 500 is recommended.
    Both types should be shortened to a legal 18" (cut to 18 1/2" to be safe) with buckshot or birdshot ( #6 to #12)the best loads for close in defense.

    He also says, one falicy that people have is that a shotgun throws such a wide pattern you don't need to aim...He says that's not right and you should make sure you attach a front sight on the shotgun after being cut down as the pattern at close quarters is not as wide as you might think.

    One type of shotgun to avoid for this use is one where the hammers are out in the open and can catch or clothes or ? hammerless is the best.

    Of course his first line of home defense is a handgun, with the shotgun being the backup, especially for the wife who doesn't like handguns.

    I got this book through the library and it is chocked full of stuff...if you can, read it...Hope this is useful infor...
     
  13. manakiah

    manakiah Issaquah Wa Member

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    I will narrow it down to a Survival issue, Not so much home defense but possible depending if you are "bugging out" or " bugging in"
     
  14. Gunner3456

    Gunner3456 Salem Well-Known Member

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    It now depends on where you live and what you think the worst case scenario might be. I still contend that a shotgun is useful only for short range, and if I can have just one gun, it will be the AR.
     
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  15. ORBrit

    ORBrit Eugene Member

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    my SHTF gun is my Mossberg 590.
    00 buck will do the job out to 30 yards or so. Rifled slugs beyond that.
     
  16. manakiah

    manakiah Issaquah Wa Member

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    The shotgun seems like the better choice but the amount of ammo would be hard to carry on the move!
     
  17. Gunner3456

    Gunner3456 Salem Well-Known Member

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    Five 2 3/4" 00 buck shells weigh about 8 oz and are bulky. You get about 10 rounds to the pound. You get about 32 XM193 rounds per pound and they actually take up less space than the ten 00 buck.

    The AR has no comparison about effective distance to the shotgun.

    Just something to consider if you're bugging out.
     
  18. manakiah

    manakiah Issaquah Wa Member

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    Reliability also plays a roll in this aswell?
     
  19. Gunner3456

    Gunner3456 Salem Well-Known Member

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    I have about 3k rounds through an AR without a single issue. I've never put that many 00 buck or slugs through a defensive shotgun so I can't say. :)
     
  20. Bruce

    Bruce Jefferson County, Wa Member

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    I do have neighbors and I dont think they would want 00.00 buck pellets flying through their house. Also, I have multiple family members around the house. If you are going to use a shotgun indoors and neighbors are a concern, lighter loads are still devastating at "inside the house" ranges. If I had to choose between a shotgun and an AR I would choose an AR with 55 grain hollow points that will fragment appart as they go through walls

    Bruce.