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Shotgun for home defense?

Old 02-14-2010, 09:29 PM
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Default Shotgun for home defense?

Well, I've narrowed down my choices - both are Remington "870" Express "Compact" models (pumps).

I will NOT use the gun for hunting or skeet - ONLY in a home defense mode.

I'm looking at 20ga., as it should do the job with the proper loads. "Kick" is also a factor in the intended use - don't want to be concerned with it when needed.

Questions:

1. Having a little shorter arms than some folks, I like the "feel" of the "Jr./Youth" model, as it has a little bit shorter stock, but an 18-3/4" barrel (37-1/4" overall length) vs. 21" barrel (40-1/2" overall length) on the other "Compact" models. The "length of pull" on the "Jr./Youth" is 12" vs. 13" on the others, BUT the gun comes with a "length of pull" KIT that can be used to add up to 1" LOP using 2 - 1/4" LOP spacers, and/or 1 - 1/2" LOP spacer, and the appropriate screws. Sound reasonable?

2. Is the 18-3/4" barrel "long" eNOUGH for the intended use?

3. Is 20ga. eNOUGH?

4. Gun also comes with "Super Cell" recoil pad, and, I think, a Rem choke?

5. Gun is "full" choke (Jr./Youth model) - other "Compacts" are "modified" choke.

6. Any "advantage" to a "ribbed" barrel vs. non-ribbed?

Is this a good choice, IYO? About $277 at Wal-Mart (if "apples-to-apples"?), $309 @ Bass Pro and local gun shop.

Thanks for your comments!

Here's a pic of the 18-3/4" barrel model and the 21" model ("ribbed").



Regards,
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Old 02-14-2010, 09:46 PM
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It almost doesn't matter what ga. it is, nor the length, or even if its not loaded. When an intruder hears that pump action, he's usually going to get scarce real quick. I would keep it loaded tho, just in case.
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Old 02-14-2010, 09:56 PM
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Yep - I've heard from a lot of folks that the sound of that pump action is NORMALLY enough to "change" someone's mind, but some folks are STUPID enough to ignore it.

It WILL stay loaded - and with no plug!

I've seen some Remington "self/home defense" loads that have BOTH #4 AND #6 in the same shell. Not sure if that load is available in 20ga.?

I honestly hope I never have to use it, but ...

Regards,
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Old 02-14-2010, 10:01 PM
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If your buying one for "home defense" I would say go with the 12ga for the little bit more it will cost you. The law enforcement models have a slightly shorter stock which may be your best bet. Like Libra said your really buying the sound with a shot gun and more times then not thats all it will take to scare off some knucklehead. I have a remington 870 12ga with a 18" barrel and extended mag tube that holds 8+1 rounds. Gun also has a side saddle shell holder that holds 5 shells and a speed feed shortened stock that holds 4 shells in that. If you cant hit what your aiming for or at least scare them out of your house with 18 rounds then the bad guy deserves to get cha. used to be my duty weapon but has turned into a dust collector in the closet. would consider letting it go if it sounds like something your interested in??? may be a bit overkill but thought I would throw it out there
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Old 02-14-2010, 11:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Bruce W View Post
Yep - I've heard from a lot of folks that the sound of that pump action is NORMALLY enough to "change" someone's mind, but some folks are STUPID enough to ignore it.

It WILL stay loaded - and with no plug!

I've seen some Remington "self/home defense" loads that have BOTH #4 AND #6 in the same shell. Not sure if that load is available in 20ga.?

I honestly hope I never have to use it, but ...

Regards,

I would not use bird shot for self defense. You need buckshot.
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Old 02-15-2010, 03:50 AM
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There have been lots of threads

I remember a few things

#4 buckshot if you can find it is supposedly best for a number of reasons but at close range probably anything that size or smaller down to 4 birdshot would go through the intruder and not the next room. The 12 guage may also have more options for load sizes. Other than that guage size probably doesnt matter much.


And yes the pump is great choice also for a number of safety and sound reasons. The shotguns to me seems just tons safer than pistols especially with other prople in the house. Hard for a kid to shoot himself with a shotgun.
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Old 02-15-2010, 04:15 AM
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870 Is a great choice, have hunted with the same one since the 60's (won in a trap shoot contest in high school). I promise you at close range the 20ga will do all the damage you need! It is still fresh in my mind back when I was 10 years old and a bit disappointed that dad had chosen a .410 bolt action for me as my first gun (he was big into rabbit hunting with a couple beagles). He laid an old piece of 2x4 against a tree and had me shoot it, I was sold.
BTW; As I grew older, I went through a bunch of shotguns and my final gun of choice for rabbit hunting is a double barrel .410 with #6 shot... Nice'n'light, with enough juice to do the job without blowing the thing to simitherines.

Oh, for your use, I'd want the shortest barrel available

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Old 02-15-2010, 04:25 AM
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An 870 is the tried and try favorite by most. It has ridden in many of a cruiser for years. I have said it before and I will again, if you pull a gun be prepared to use it. This notion that the sound will drive them off is not always true. Bruce the 20 ga is fine for your intended use. If it is just you and your wife in the house I would stick with 00 or maybe #1 buckshot as a shotgun is not near as bad as a rifle. If you are concerned about recoil get some of the new Federal Law Enforcement shotgun ammo, it is low brass and designed to have alot less recoil. That is what rides in my 870 at work. As far as ribbed or un that is apersonal preference, many women like the ribbed, oh I digress... Anyway good luck
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Old 02-15-2010, 04:49 AM
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Bruce W, we have a 20 ga under the bed at home loaded with 00. It's a Remington SF 1100 short barrel (bird gun). A pistol is on the bedstand (either Glock 26 9MM, Sigpro 2022 9MM or Detonics Combat Master .45 ACP depending on mood).

Cracker, we finally had a break-in at our house in JAX (Springfield). Stupid alarm company had the siren set to expire after 5 minutes. Police response time was about 40 minutes. They went through every drawer and closet. Other than the broken out back window no damage but they got the flat screen, DVD player, assorted booze, about 5 bottles of red wine (they left the white) and some other odds and enz. They hit us a 5:23 PM. Pretty brazen huh? I was hoping they'd come back the night we were there. I had a surprise for them! But no show.

Hal
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Old 02-15-2010, 05:09 AM
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mines a 12 gauge
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Old 02-15-2010, 05:14 AM
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I wouldn't worry about recoil to much, If you need to use it chances are you will never feel it. Which ever gun you choose, buy a few different rounds, go out and shoot targets at aboout the same distance that you would have to shoot in your home, each gun will pattern differntly. Sure OO buck is bigger than #1 buck, but 8 pellets in a target are better than 1.

Hope you never need it tho
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Old 02-15-2010, 05:21 AM
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Originally Posted by Bruce W View Post
Well, I've narrowed down my choices - both are Remington "870" Express "Compact" models (pumps).

I will NOT use the gun for hunting or skeet - ONLY in a home defense mode.

I'm looking at 20ga., as it should do the job with the proper loads. "Kick" is also a factor in the intended use - don't want to be concerned with it when needed.

Questions:

1. Having a little shorter arms than some folks, I like the "feel" of the "Jr./Youth" model, as it has a little bit shorter stock, but an 18-3/4" barrel (37-1/4" overall length) vs. 21" barrel (40-1/2" overall length) on the other "Compact" models. The "length of pull" on the "Jr./Youth" is 12" vs. 13" on the others, BUT the gun comes with a "length of pull" KIT that can be used to add up to 1" LOP using 2 - 1/4" LOP spacers, and/or 1 - 1/2" LOP spacer, and the appropriate screws. Sound reasonable?

2. Is the 18-3/4" barrel "long" eNOUGH for the intended use?

3. Is 20ga. eNOUGH?

4. Gun also comes with "Super Cell" recoil pad, and, I think, a Rem choke?

5. Gun is "full" choke (Jr./Youth model) - other "Compacts" are "modified" choke.

6. Any "advantage" to a "ribbed" barrel vs. non-ribbed?

Is this a good choice, IYO? About $277 at Wal-Mart (if "apples-to-apples"?), $309 @ Bass Pro and local gun shop.

Thanks for your comments!

Here's a pic of the 18-3/4" barrel model and the 21" model ("ribbed").



Regards,

I have nothing against people owning firearms but you need nto ask what weapon for self defence??? Just ask yourself what gun you would really be happy shooting a family memebr with... would you rather take a body out of your home missing a head or maybe just half the head missing?
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Old 02-15-2010, 05:34 AM
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Thats kinda the same thing I tell people when they ask "what hand gun should I buy to keep under the bed or in the night stand?" The upside to a shot gun in my personal opinion is it takes a few more steps to actually pull the trigger. If you want that "shotgun" sound which is hopefully all you need then you don't want one in the barrel anyway. You have to rack one, point and then pull the trigger giving you a little extra time to decide what your gonna do next where a hand gun is normally a pick up and shoot deal. In stressful situations it is amazing what happens to the human body and that extra second or two may be the difference in making a decision you will second guess for the rest of your life.
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Old 02-15-2010, 08:19 AM
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Don't count on any sound having an effect on an intruder. Be prepared to defend yourself and your family. In other words, do not delay waiting for a reaction to the sound of racking the slide, you give up the element of surprise

Look at an autoloader for reduced recoil. Check out the Mossberg 930 SPX or Benelli M4 (expensive and requires some mods)
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Old 02-15-2010, 10:28 AM
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The 870 is a very tried and true shot gun that will not let you down. I use an 870 express super mag for hunting and I have never even heard of one being abuse quite like mine and it is still ticking after 6 years of very heavy abuse in the nastiest swamps and woods I can find. It will last forever for what you are doing with it. I don't care what language you speak, the racking of a pump gun sounds the same to everyone. I also disagree with the added time when using a pump. I have been using mine long enough that I can keep up with the automatics any day. Once you become proficient with a pump, it is like second nature.
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Old 02-15-2010, 10:36 AM
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870 express 12 ga with 00 buck in a 2 3/4" shell
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Old 02-15-2010, 10:45 AM
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I love my 870 and it never let me down over my years hunting with it. however, if I was only looking for a shotgun for home defense i think I would consider something cheaper, plastic stock, etc.. Perhaps a Mossberg pump. just a thought. Perhaps the price diff is not all that much. I also like the standard dear slayer barrel if you can get that standard WO a premium.
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Old 02-15-2010, 10:49 AM
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Originally Posted by boatmanalso View Post
I have nothing against people owning firearms but you need nto ask what weapon for self defence??? Just ask yourself what gun you would really be happy shooting a family memebr with... would you rather take a body out of your home missing a head or maybe just half the head missing?
WTF? So you think the only thing that will come out of a person having a defense gun is a family member getting shot?
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Old 02-15-2010, 10:56 AM
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Originally Posted by debugger View Post
WTF? So you think the only thing that will come out of a person having a defense gun is a family member getting shot?
Pretty much so. The only intruders in my house ended up being my kids or their friends... OOOOPS Mr and Mrs XXX. I blew your daughter head off. I didn't know she was sneaking in to fool around with my son in bed.....How many intruders do you get in a lifetime? 1 in 10,000 is undesireable????? Thats a awefull lot of kids in the wrong place!

Are you people really anti gun protesters trytng to make gun owners look like idiots? No real gun owner would be so stupid!
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Old 02-15-2010, 11:08 AM
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Originally Posted by boatmanalso View Post
Pretty much so. The only intruders in my house ended up being my kids or their friends... OOOOPS Mr and Mrs XXX. I blew your daughter head off. I didn't know she was sneaking in to fool around with my son in bed.....How many intruders do you get in a lifetime? 1 in 10,000 is undesireable????? Thats a awefull lot of kids in the wrong place!

Are you people really anti gun protesters trytng to make gun owners look like idiots? No real gun owner would be so stupid!
Everyone's entitled to their opinion. I wouldn't want to watch my wife getting raped, or worse, because I didn't have a weapon or was never trained to use one. Guns for me are a sport, a hobby, and a recreational passtime. It just so happens that they make a wonderful device for defending oneself as well.

Not quite sure what you mean with your last statement.

"Are you people really anti gun protesters trytng to make gun owners look like idiots? No real gun owner would be so stupid!"
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