12 Guage - 2 3/4" or 3" shells


March 8, 2006, 01:10 AM
I have a Remington 870 that I've owned for about 25 years. It is chambered only for 2 3/4" shells but it has been suggested that I should have one that will handle 3" shells for protection against grizzly. I'm planning a trip to Alaska and read that the larger shell is highly recommended.

I'd like to know the opinions of fellow members regarding this issue. Should I sell the 2 3/4 and buy the 3 or will my current one do?

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March 8, 2006, 01:13 AM
Check the ballistics of various slugs at remington.com. See how different they are.

Buckshot is no good.

New 870's are cheap. I'd be reluctant to sell the old one, because the amount you get for it wouldn't be the difference between a new one and not. What is it?

Taurus 66
March 8, 2006, 01:34 AM
12 Gauge 3 inch "one ought" or "1" with choke is good for bears "only" if you aim for the head and intend to take out the eyes. Then the rest is just a kill matter for you, since the bear could be blinded and cannot see to attack you any longer. YOU MUST KILL THE ANIMAL AT THIS POINT!

You would stand a better chance of stopping an attacking bear with slugs. If your barrel is smooth bore, change it out for a rifled barrel, and carry a sidearm for backup, preferably something in the .40+ caliber range.

March 8, 2006, 09:57 AM
A 2" chamber is all you need - just load the right ammo. For bears, look at the Rottweil Brenneke (http://www.dnrws.com/rottweil.html) slugs. These out-penetrate typical US Foster-style slugs by a significant margin, and are excellent performers at close range - in Africa, they've even been used to take Cape buffalo, which are a darn sight tougher than bears!

BTW, Rottweil isn't the only ammo manufacturer loading Brenneke slugs - I think KO loads them as well in the USA. Check around.

Blue Jays
March 8, 2006, 10:31 AM
Hi All-

My favorite Vangcomp Remington 870 Police Magnum has been loaded exclusively with 2.75" shells since I've owned it. The barrel is marked that it can digest either size shell, but I consider the larger one to be overkill. Eventually, someone is going to offer a 5.25" shell and that will become all the rage amongst shotgunners! :D

~ Blue Jays ~

March 8, 2006, 11:26 AM
They might be limited in size to the 4" shells made from .50BMG... :what: They say that turned brass is limited in pressure.

March 8, 2006, 01:30 PM
Preacherman; Two thumbs up on the Rottweil Brenneke slugs!

I shoot the originals with the felt wads, knock on wood every whitetail I've taken with them has been with one shot. And for a smoothbore they group well. I could be wrong but the Rott's are the only ones they market with felt, and the others use plastic.

March 8, 2006, 04:38 PM

As I stated in my original post it is a Remington 870 chambered in 2 3/4".


March 8, 2006, 05:21 PM
Go with the 2-3/4" Brenneke.
There is negligible difference between a 3" ane 2-3/4" slug.
Depends on how you shoot one vs. another.

March 8, 2006, 05:37 PM
+1 for Brenneke's (sp??)

Devastating on soft tissue. Don't ask me how I know.

March 8, 2006, 05:50 PM
I would say 2 3/4" is sufficient. If you are using it for self defense, I would say smoothbore is okay, also, since you really aren't looking to extend your range. Any bear close enough to be shot in self defense is close enough to be shot with slugs out of a smoothbore.

March 8, 2006, 05:58 PM

You make a good point. I'll probably be using my Ruger Redhawk .44 with Garrett Cartridges .330 gr hardcast or Buffalo Bore's .340 gr hardcast as primary since I'll be carrying a 50+ pound camera pack on my back. I figured the shotgun will be for camp or something my wife will carry along side me.

March 10, 2006, 06:59 PM
After much research I found a couple of slugs that might be just the ticket for grizzly defense. One is Remington's Express BuckHammer 23/4" 11/4 oz. 1550 fps slug. The other is Dynamit Nobel's Brenneke Magnum 23/4" 11/8 oz. 1590 fps slug. Anyone familiar with these?

March 10, 2006, 07:02 PM
See my post above...

March 10, 2006, 07:38 PM
<hands behind back - crosses fingers>

Brenneke's are really terrible - especially the 12 ga 2 3/4" and 20 ga 2 3/4 ones.

In fact...if one should happen to have a line on 20 ga ones in 2 3/4" , please PM me or Preacherman. Err...On a mission to rid inventories of these really bad shells...

Preacherman , crossing fingers counts - right?



March 10, 2006, 10:23 PM
Yours will do the job. But, a .22 will also do the job if you shoot the bear in the eye and the bullet hits the brain. If it were me, I would use 3.5" against grizzly. Don't play around. If you have to ask "is this enough power" for a situation like that, then it probably isn't enough.

March 10, 2006, 10:53 PM
After reading all three of James Gary Shelton's books and spending about 45 minutes on the phone with him (he lives in Canada and I live in New Mexico) I've taken his suggestion regarding firearms and grizzlies. For those of you that haven't heard of him I'd suggest you Google his name. He is considered by many to be the foremost expert on grizzly attacks. He has done probably more ballistic and firearm testing on the subject than anyone in North America.

He suggested the type of slugs I mentioned. Not those exact slugs but ones similar. I ordered 4 boxes of each and plan on testing them. He said that if I can consistently keep them within 6" at 25m they will do the job.

March 10, 2006, 10:59 PM

If you do get any of the Brenneke's let me know, I have a great location to dispose of them.;)

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