Home defense is obviously a big topic here. One issue that comes up frequently is penetration.
Came across this recent web page testing handgun and shotgun penetration of drywall and interior walls. Interesting stuff. Especially when you look at how the walls of your home are actually constructed.
The first page is primarily handguns and an AR15. Page two has 12 guage tests. Makes me wonder about the guys who choose .223 for HD use because it won't penetrate walls.
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December 30, 2004, 08:10 AM
I live in an old (170+ yrs) stone home so unless it goes out the window nothing will exit my walls. That said if I lived in a typical suburban home and were to use a shotgun for home defense the load of choice would be plain old "Promotional" bird shot loads of 7.5 or 8 shot. At across the room distances with unchoked barrels you have a fist sized ball of lead shot which imo would be pretty rough on anyone who happened to stop it. If you miss your target I doubt that it would be very leathal after passing thru 2 layers of drywall and certainly would not endanger anyone in a home next door. My 2 cents. Nick
December 30, 2004, 11:47 PM
That was a very good site. We need more tests like this. I was in hope he would have done some tests on birdshot and steelshot.
December 31, 2004, 02:22 AM
That's pretty good info.
I wonder what the penetration would have been if there was insulation inside the experimental walls.
Also, projectiles lose energy in the distance between house walls so I doubt that the projectiles would penetrate that many real walls.
It is still a good baseline comparison between guns/cartridges.
December 31, 2004, 01:44 PM
"over penetration" ranks right up there with "don't carry handloads for CCW" as being WAY over emphasized.
Frankly, I don't plan to miss..............
December 31, 2004, 07:55 PM
I am mulling over doing some similar experiments. I will need to get approval from the gun range Board of Directors first. I am thinking of buying some sheetrock and cutting it up into 1 or 2 foot squares. Then creating a simulated interior wall of two sheets spaced with 2X4s.
I would then tests the penetration that various shotgun rounds would have on the wall from various distances. Maybe on the other side of the simulated wall a few feet away, I could place an old T-shirt and some wet phone books.
I think it would be interesting and worthy to do.
What effect does an interior wall have on different sizes of birdshot?
I simply do not know. I suspect that if the wall is hit with birdshot when the birdshot is still in one big mass that the wall will do little to restrict the lethality of the shotgun blast.
December 31, 2004, 08:18 PM
I used to have a book (borrowed and never returned) about combat shotgunning.
The author did a test on a wider variety of house walls.
He tested interior walls made of wallboard, old fashioned plaster and lathe, and several others, and exterior walls including standard walls with and without siding, and cinder block and brick.
His experiments pretty well proved that NO interior wall would stop ANY shotgun pellets of any size from #9 bird shot to 00 buck.
The only exterior walls that would stop shot was cinder block and brick.
His test indicated that nothing inside the average home would stop shot, including most furniture and appliances.
The authors advice for "trouble" was to slide off your bed onto the floor, and just shoot your shotgun right through the walls.
Most walls are "transparent" to shotguns.
January 1, 2005, 02:17 PM
I have no doubt that a shot from a shotgun with bird shot would penetrate 1 interior wall ( 2 layers of sheetrock and hollow). The leathality or effectiveness of it after passing thru the wall I think would greatly depend on how far from the wall a person was. At any rate seeing as I have opened my yap on this subject I will try and test it out in the comming week and try and put this to rest. I have some exterior sheathing, vinyl siding and 2x4's and will need to scrounge up some drywall. I think I'll shoot thru a wall at 10' with some birdshot out of a cyl choke gun and see what comes out the other side and what it can do after passing thru the wall. I will post my results when finished. Nick
January 2, 2005, 11:30 AM
The rules at my gun club prevents me from doing the same. I am interested in what results you get.
January 2, 2005, 12:20 PM
Page is no longer there - showing as 404 not found
January 2, 2005, 12:29 PM
Bummer. I thought it was pretty interesting. Even if you don't plan to miss. ;)