AR15 vs. 12 gauge shotgun for home defense


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Alex45ACP
June 20, 2006, 01:40 PM
I have a 12 gauge Mossberg 590A1 and an AR15 with 16" barrel. The only reason I have the shotgun is for home defense. Which is superior for home defense? If the AR can do the shotgun's job, I'll just sell it and use that money towards my next purchase - a Colt 1911 :cool:

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RaetherEnt
June 20, 2006, 01:45 PM
Just my opinion, however, for close quarters, in the dark, and with the pulse racing, I would much rather trust the ability of a shotgun to take down a BG before my AR.

RNB65
June 20, 2006, 01:52 PM
Nothing beats buckshot for home defense.

the naked prophet
June 20, 2006, 02:15 PM
I also believe a .223 will be much louder in the house than the shotgun will.

Keep them both loaded, but personally I'd go for the shotgun first.

Karbon
June 20, 2006, 02:16 PM
Nice, cheap, 870 12ga pump is my suggestion.

Ironballs
June 20, 2006, 02:28 PM
------------------------------------ AR15--------------- Shotgun
Capacity:--------------------------- +1 (30)------------- -1 (7)
Reliability----------------------------- -1 ------------ +1
1 shot kill.---------------------------- -1 ------------- +1
use under adversity (1/2 asleep)------- 0 -------------- +1

Total: -1 ---------------- +2



The other thing about racking the slide making bad folks run i rank as neutral, as sometimes silence is golden, and sometimes it will lead to flight...


Personally, AR in the Safe, 870 at arms length-

JesseJames
June 20, 2006, 02:38 PM
You could get a .50 caliber Beowolf upper for your AR and keep the 5.56mm upper in the closet.
Keep the shotgun as insurance and get the handgun for later.
That Beowolf is absolutely DEVASTATING at close range. :D

backlash
June 20, 2006, 02:50 PM
I've got both, I keep the shotty by the bed and the AR in the next room

The graph Ironballs put up, pretty much sums it up. Over penetration would not be as big of an issue with a shotgun as it would be with an AR either.

ArmedBear
June 20, 2006, 02:54 PM
I'm not sure I'd give "capacity" a -1 for 7 rounds of 9 pellets each, for home defense. It's also easy to top off a shotgun by shoving rounds in the magazine, but more than 7 rounds of buckshot is a military engagement, not home defense.:)

0 maybe, but not -1.

Roadwild17
June 20, 2006, 03:24 PM
Its dark and your heart is pounding, do you want to have to worry about "aiming" your ar, or just pointing your shotgun.

JesseJames
June 20, 2006, 03:30 PM
Get a SureFire flashlight on the end of that shotgun.

SomeKid
June 20, 2006, 03:30 PM
One thing not otherwise mentioned, is misses.

Do you live in an apartment, home in the suburbs, or rural? If either of the first two, I would choose a shotgun. If rural, give me an AR.

While keeping yourself alive is vital, you do not want to injure/kill an innocent neighbor by mistake.

ArmedBear
June 20, 2006, 03:31 PM
In all fairness, there are those who can point an AR as fast as a shotgun, and who would feel most comfortable with it. Generally, they're US Marines.

But shotguns are made to be pointed quickly. From old "coach guns" and fowling pieces to modern weapons, they've always been.

Alex45ACP
June 20, 2006, 03:31 PM
At indoor ranges does that actually make any difference?

Alex45ACP
June 20, 2006, 03:32 PM
One thing not otherwise mentioned, is misses.

Do you live in an apartment, home in the suburbs, or rural? If either of the first two, I would choose a shotgun. If rural, give me an AR.

While keeping yourself alive is vital, you do not want to injure/kill an innocent neighbor by mistake.

Large house (6 bedrooms) in urban/suburban area.

Alex45ACP
June 20, 2006, 03:33 PM
Get a SureFire flashlight on the end of that shotgun.

Yup, I plan to do that on either the AR or the shotgun.

ArmedBear
June 20, 2006, 03:38 PM
Try it, Alex.

Set up some targets. Watermelons are fun, if they're cheap. Set up a course with watermelons about 4 feet off the ground.

Don't keep the gun shouldered. For real fun, put it on the ground.

See how long it takes to pick up the gun and destroy the watermelon from 20 feet or so.

Then try jogging the course and see about hitting all of them. Make SURE no one is anywhere you could accidentally shoot, ricochet, etc.

Personally, I wouldn't want anything but a bead on the shotgun. I don't know how yours it set up.

(If you don't know how to point and shoot a shotgun correctly, it may offer no advantage. However, it's not hard to learn if someone shows you. Also, any gun has to fit you, rifle or shotgun.)

MisterPX
June 20, 2006, 03:39 PM
"Nothing beats buckshot for home defense."

Unless they've got armor. 5.56 is great for HD.

'Card
June 20, 2006, 03:47 PM
If I was worried about a group of ninjas, the henchmen of some evil genius, or a horde of zombies, I'd probably go with the AR.

Since a realistic threat assesment points to solitary drug addicts, thieves, or rapists (in my part of the world anyway - ninjas and crime lords being rare in rural NC) I roll out with a shotgun for HD.

SomeKid
June 20, 2006, 03:47 PM
Alex, you are right there in that lovely grey area. That said, you sound rich. Adopt me, and pay for my Masters or Med School?

Joking aside, I would ask myself where I am likely to confront a BG. Would it be as they were rising the steps, around a corner, up close, or at a distance? Decide where you are likely to find yourself fighting, and that can determine your gun.

I did the same thing in my current residence, and because of the way things are, I think a shotgun would be better. (That said, I simply haven't gotten one yet, which is why an AR is my current go-to longarm.)

Kestryll
June 20, 2006, 03:48 PM
If you don't know how to point and shoot a shotgun correctly, it may offer no advantage. However, it's not hard to learn if someone shows you.

This is probably fodder for another post but...

I am intrigued by this statement. I have a fair understanding of shotguns based on dove and pheasent hunting but the 'defensive' end of it has all been personal interpretation.

What do you consider the correct method of pointing and shooting a shotgun and is it a defensive only concept or all around 'hunting/target/defense' method?

If it works and makes sense I'm always willing to add something new to the repertoire! ;)

ArmedBear
June 20, 2006, 03:54 PM
Since a realistic threat assesment points to solitary drug addicts, thieves, or rapists

LOL

That reminds me of something else. If there are two home invaders (probably the other realistic threat), I'd rather have a shotgun, too.

If you have shotgun practice, it's relatively easy to acquire and hit two targets very quickly. And it's fun to practice. Fundamentally, you just have to learn to move your whole upper body rather than only the gun. With buckshot, you can hit one assailant and move on to the other one. A "doubletap" can easily mean both guys are down.

Now, using shotgun body-movement techniques, I've hit hand-thrown clays with a .223 carbine. But with a shotgun, I wouldn't even have to hesitate to see if I'd hit the first guy before I could move on to the next one.

If I'm dealing with two big, armed men who are trying to hurt/kill my family, I want them both down, fast, permanently. If I ever have to shoot, that will be the situation: an immediate, deadly threat.

ArmedBear
June 20, 2006, 03:59 PM
I am intrigued by this statement. I have a fair understanding of shotguns based on dove and pheasent hunting but the 'defensive' end of it has all been personal interpretation.

That's what I meant.

If you can shoulder, point and shoot a flushing pheasant, you can do the same to a rapist, unless you have some silly tactical-tommy shotgun that doesn't fit.

I understand that there is a lot of good stuff out there like training for defensive shooting, but in EVERY single news report I've ever read, say, in American Rifleman's Armed Citizen section, the shooter has not been some specops wannabe, it's just been a person who could acquire and hit a target before being killed. Sure, ninja training would have helped them, but it didn't seem to be a prerequisite.:)

I've also seen people who couldn't hit a thing with a shotgun; they'd need to learn before expecting to defend their homes.

mljdeckard
June 20, 2006, 04:11 PM
There are very few loads for the AR which aren't guaranteed to over-penetrate. In a situation where you would actually have to fire it in the house, you may not be able to make sure your backstop isn't your neighbor's house or your kid's bed. Bad times.

My primary is a remington pump, loaded with #4 buck. Devastating in close, but not as likely to rip through your whole house like 00.

The backup is my M-1 carbine, mostly for my wife. Smaller, not intimidating, and the round is really a pistol round. Assualt rifle rounds by definition will likely over-penetrate a human target.

Alex45ACP
June 20, 2006, 04:14 PM
Joking aside, I would ask myself where I am likely to confront a BG. Would it be as they were rising the steps, around a corner, up close, or at a distance? Decide where you are likely to find yourself fighting, and that can determine your gun.

Well I keep my long guns upstairs, but when I am around the house I usually keep either a BHP or a S&W 642 on my person. If someone breaks in while I'm sleeping at night I'm not going to run around the house looking for them, I plan to just stand at the top of the steps and shoot them if they try to come upstairs.

ArmedBear
June 20, 2006, 04:14 PM
The backup is my M-1 carbine, mostly for my wife.

I'm not that afraid of my wife. Maybe you two should seek counseling.:p

Alex45ACP
June 20, 2006, 04:17 PM
There are very few loads for the AR which aren't guaranteed to over-penetrate. In a situation where you would actually have to fire it in the house, you may not be able to make sure your backstop isn't your neighbor's house or your kid's bed. Bad times.

This isn't really a concern since only 1 other person lives here regularly, no kids. I'm more worried about hitting a neighbor's house, but chances are I'd just be firing down the steps and into the backyard/kitchen floor.

Lou629
June 20, 2006, 04:33 PM
Inside the house, or anything inside 20 yards for that matter, you will 'own' the bad guy(s) with the scatter-gun. It's the right tool for the job under just about any conditions. However, if there is ever a real NOLA/SHTF situation in your area, you may want the AR to cover the outside of your property a little more efficiently at longer ranges. I don't know how far the longest shot you might possibly have to take would be under extreme conditions, but if the possibility exists, better to have the right tool for that job.

ArmedBear
June 20, 2006, 04:35 PM
That's true.

But if I had to choose only one gun for defense, it would be the shotgun. Add a barrel to it, and it would be the survival hunting gun, as well.

'Card
June 20, 2006, 04:44 PM
The backup is my M-1 carbine, mostly for my wife.
I'm not that afraid of my wife.
My wife is a redhead, so naturally I live with the fear that my S&W .500Mag may be inadequate.

In all honesty, if it's that time of the month, I'll probably need grenades.

JohnLINY
June 20, 2006, 04:46 PM
Another aspect of the 12g vs AR debate is in the event you do have to shoot a bad guy. It maybe more PC to have used a shotgun vs an 'evil' assult rifle. The press and the DA's office might play up the assult rifle angle. Then again I am in the People's Republic of NY!

Freddymac
June 20, 2006, 05:00 PM
At in-house distances I can rip off 5-10 somewhat well placed shots from my CAR15 in the time that it would take the average person to fire 2 shots from a pump action shotgun. Now, I don’t know if I could do that half asleep at 4 o’clock in the morning. There is an article on June issue of Combat Arms about the misconception surrounding the shotgun in combat and home defense. The author talks about how people blindly believe in the “just point” technique that is thrown around gun shops, hunting camps, and the local watering hole. I personally use my CAR15 for HD and do not feel as though I am giving up anything. But that being said, I’m a rifleman, and my main experience with a shottie is busting clays.

MechAg94
June 20, 2006, 05:07 PM
I guess I would ask 5-10 shots at how many targets? I wouldn't plan on being able to clearly see what I am shooting at. My goto rifle for HD is a levergun in .357 right now though an AR and an AK are readily available.

ArmedBear
June 20, 2006, 05:14 PM
The author talks about how people blindly believe in the “just point” technique that is thrown around gun shops, hunting camps, and the local watering hole.

There's no "just" about pointing. It's a hard-learned skill, and it doesn't mean "point in the general direction." It's a technique used for acquiring and hitting targets, often moving targets, quickly. It involves your whole body, and focusing on the target rather than the sights. Aiming is far easier, just a lot slower.

Those who practice the skill of pointing can hit things quickly and accurately. Those who pooh-pooh the notion of pointing don't even know what it means.

It sure doesn't take me as long to pump a shotgun once as to shoot 10 well-placed rounds from a semiauto. And the two shots from the shotgun will go where I want them to, so that 18 00 pellets hit the target in two devastating volleys.

Does that mean I wouldn't use a .223 for self-defense? No. I can point my .223 carbine, too. But I can point my shotgun better, though, because I have more practice, the geometry is better, and I don't need much if any light to confirm where it's pointed.

Lou629
June 20, 2006, 05:16 PM
Somehow i don't think you'll have to worry about being half-asleep if it comes down to it, the adrenaline rush will probably have you wired :what: to the max, 'yaknow?

If that's the case, and your hands are shaking a little from it, I don't think it's a stretch to say that most of us would not be exibiting our best imitation of Daniel Boone or Davy Crockett shooting skills right about then. Would you still rather have the 5-10 individual projectiles, shot hastily and only marginally aimed, or maybe up to thirty-two .30 cal. projectiles from the 'two shots' of 16 pellet-count #1 buck expanding 1" every 3 feet?

Just food for thought here, there's no one weapon that will be right for everyone in every circumstance.

lawson
June 20, 2006, 05:24 PM
busting clays is pretty good experience in quick shots from a pump gun, as well as bird hunting. when you can down three quail in rapid succession, you've pretty much got the concept of rapid target acquisition and neutralization.

a few weeks back, some buddies and i set up a home defense shotgun course on a buddy's private "range". the shooter started the course laying on a cot, and at start time, had to retrieve their gun of choice, and hit three one-gallon water jugs at various distances.

Freddymac
June 20, 2006, 05:35 PM
marginally aimed, or maybe up to thirty-two .30 cal. projectiles from the 'two shots' of 16 pellet-count #1 buck expanding 1" every 3 feet?
I’ve never fired a shotgun in a house, but 1” every 3 ft I think that more than a few of those 16 pellets are going to go into the walls of a 3 foot wide hallway. Which brings me to another point. I personally feel that my CAR15 would be easier to return fire from behind cover with, and that the .223 would be able to defeat cover better than all but the stoutest buckshot loads or slugs.

When I said, “just point”, I was not talking about those of you who practice regularly with you scatter guns. I was speaking of those who don’t shoot or rarely fire a gun. You know the type, the guys who play too many video games, of seen one too many zombie movies and think that the shotgun is a magic wand that you point in the general direction of a BG and the pellets will just their to him.

Mech, before I jot my CAR, my HD gun (well, my only gun) was a Win 94. I think that lever guns are great for HD. They are light, accurate, fast handling, and you can reload in between shots.

Dr.Rob
June 20, 2006, 05:35 PM
That 2 inch difference in sights and bore makes a difference at short range on an AR... you see a LOT of torn up barriers from this.

A shotgun with a bead front sight and a spare rifle sight barrel for hunting is far more flexible than an AR. A short 18-21 inch 'deer' barrel wth sights can still throw buckshot (I do it all the time).

Trading away the shotgun will net you a couple hundred bucks? Just save up for the 1911. Keep the shotgun handy.

B Easy
June 20, 2006, 06:09 PM
Personally I'd take the AR but that's just me.

More convenient light mounting, and I know that if someone grabs a family member hostage style, I'm not going to take out a chunk of their shoulder when I attempt the headshot on the badguy, g-d forbid.

ArmedBear
June 20, 2006, 06:51 PM
I know that if someone grabs a family member hostage style, I'm not going to take out a chunk of their shoulder when I attempt the headshot on the badguy, g-d forbid.

You missed Dr.Rob's point. You probably WOULD take out a chunk of their shoulder, instead of hitting the bad guy. The bad guy would then shoot you, and the hostage. I have an acquaintance who took out a chunk of the furniture, shooting varmints in the chicken coop from inside his living room -- that was funny, not deadly. That difference between the sights and the barrel can be the difference between life and death.

True enough, a shotgun isn't a good weapon for a hostage situation. Neither is an AR. A lever gun with low sights would be a LOT better.

WRT shots on target, consider this:

Set up two sets of two humanoid targets, 4 feet apart, at 5-7 yards range. The object is to see how many holes you can make in each one, in the time it takes to shoot twice with a pump shotgun. To make it realistic, you must hit BOTH assailants (essentially, the shotgunner has to shoot one round at each target; the AR shooter can choose whatever sequence will get shots on target).

One of us gets an 18" 870 with two rounds of 9-pellet 00 Buck. The other gets an AR. Both shooters are familiar with the guns. Both guns are clean and oiled. Both guns are on Safe. To make it more interesting, you could say no round chambered, but that would give the shotgun too much of an advantage.

A referee calls 1, 2, 3, GO! and both of us raise our guns and fire. The ref calls STOP! after the second round from the shotgun is fired, and the AR guy has to stop firing. Which target will have more holes near center mass?

Would you bet $100 on the AR?

Lou629
June 20, 2006, 07:02 PM
Man, your hallway must be as long as one of the runways up @ JFK airport! :) I hear what you're saying, but c'mon now, if your hallway is 20-25 feet long then the spread will be in the neighborhood of 7-8".

Put in another light, think of a group of pistol or rifle shots at a distance of X.
While i am much better with a rifle at 100 yards than i am with a pistol at 10, even i can manage to keep an entire 15-shot magazine grouping from my beretta 92 or BHP inside 7-8" at 25 feet.

Point being, just a single shot from the 16-pellet 12 Ga. round i mentioned earlier would be like throwing a whole 8" wide group at the bad guy @ the other end of the hall, with one shot! I probably wouldn't need the second one. :evil:

I would really like to have your AR for covering the 40 yards or so from my back porch to the tree line behind my house though!

DMK
June 20, 2006, 07:52 PM
Plusses for the 12 gauge:


12 gauge birdshot makes a devistating wound at close range and 5.56 can't compare.

12 gauge buckshot makes a devistating wound at longer ranges and 5.56 can't compare.

A pump shotgun is uber reliable.

Negatives for the 12 gauge:


You can short shuck it under stress. You need to practice with it.

Shotguns require longer barrels under the NFA so may be more difficult to handle in tight quarters.

You do have to aim with a shotgun, contrary to popular belief. (not really a negative, but worth stating).

A wide pattern with buckshot will send pellets past the target and may cause great collateral damage to persons and property. You need to pattern your shotgun with your desired ammo.

Your pattern gets wider at longer ranges.

Not the best choice for recoil sensitive shooters, although low recoil ammo helps.

Plusses for the AR:


Lightweight.

Shorter and easier to handle in tight quarters.

Low recoil.

More accurate and less chance of missing the target at longer ranges (+75 yards). You need to practice with it.


Negatives for the AR:


Since it's semi-automatic, jams are more likely.

The round does not produce as devistating damage as a 12 gauge with buckshot or birdshot at close range.


Both need practice. Both can be fumbled under stress. A miss with either can be very bad. Both can over penetrate.

Either can be very effective in the right circumstances with practice and skill.

Ala Dan
June 20, 2006, 07:54 PM
I've got both, but I use the Remington 12 gague 870 Marine Magnum
for home D'~!:D

Double Naught Spy
June 20, 2006, 08:38 PM
Its dark and your heart is pounding, do you want to have to worry about "aiming" your ar, or just pointing your shotgun.

Inside the house, or anything inside 20 yards for that matter, you will 'own' the bad guy(s) with the scatter-gun. It's the right tool for the job under just about any conditions.

With either gun, YOU MUST AIM. The shotgun gives you more room for error and more room to kill bystanders and punch through walls you didn't intend to shoot. You don't own anybody of you don't aim.

Somehow i don't think you'll have to worry about being half-asleep if it comes down to it, the adrenaline rush will probably have you wired to the max, 'yaknow?

I have never awakened pumped full of adrenaline. While potentially startled, the adrenaline never pumps until there is some sort of follow-up or confirmational event of a problem within the house.

Well I keep my long guns upstairs, but when I am around the house I usually keep either a BHP or a S&W 642 on my person. If someone breaks in while I'm sleeping at night I'm not going to run around the house looking for them, I plan to just stand at the top of the steps and shoot them if they try to come upstairs.

What makes you think they will be coming up the stairs? Dumb burglars will, but not smart ones. Smart ones will realize that the chances of the windows being alarmed on the second floor, or locked, are much less than on the first floor. Your intruder may be starting on the same floor as you.

U.S.SFC_RET
June 20, 2006, 08:48 PM
I agree with Doublenaughtspy on this one the public perception is a shotgun is a scattergun but in reality inside a house it's not. You are not scattering any kind of a shot spread in relatively close quarters likened to shooting in a room, hallway or in the home stairway. If you don't want to aim a shotgun might I suggest that you may get a laser sight so you can point very reliably. 00 buck will go through the BG and the wall behind him and very possibly into a family mamber.

Chris Rhines
June 20, 2006, 09:11 PM
I'd rather have the AR. Easier to shoot, easier to hit with.

- Chris

beerslurpy
June 20, 2006, 09:15 PM
If the cops confiscate my HD gun after a shooting I would rather it be a crappy 200 dollar mossberg than my 1000 dollar AR. I would use my saiga12 for HD, but out of concern for the legal situation after the shooting, I use my 40 S&W pistol due to the fact that I could stand to risk parting with it for a while.

I have recently thought about getting a cheapie AK or shottie for HD. Would hate to part with my tromix saiga-12 or arsenal AK.

If law and order ever breaks down I would break out the EBR without hesitation.

Alex45ACP
June 20, 2006, 09:28 PM
What makes you think they will be coming up the stairs? Dumb burglars will, but not smart ones. Smart ones will realize that the chances of the windows being alarmed on the second floor, or locked, are much less than on the first floor. Your intruder may be starting on the same floor as you.

Very good point. Not very likely, but still something to think about.

Bartholomew Roberts
June 20, 2006, 09:40 PM
I would go with whatever weapon you are better trained with. Good arguments can be made for either; but the key to successful use is training, not equipment.

I see a few popular myths though:

1) Shotguns don't require aiming
A rough rule of thumb is that the pattern will spread about 1" for every yard of distance. So, you'll need to aim a shotgun.

2) ARs overpenetrate and shotguns do not.
It all depends on the ammo. Regardless of whether you choose an AR or a shotgun, you will have the same problem - loads that break up quick may not penetrate deeply enough to stop the attack. Loads that penetrate deeply enough to stop the attack may not break up quickly in walls if they miss.

Either long gun is a big advantage over a pistol...

Gary G23
June 20, 2006, 10:20 PM
I'll stick with the AR. Use whatever you're most comfortable with.

dmckean44
June 20, 2006, 10:45 PM
Firing an AR or any high powered rifle inside your house in a urban/suburban area is just plain stupid. I'd go for a the shotgun loaded alternating 00 buck and slugs. If I had to choose a rifle it'd probably be something pistol caliber that won't go through walls and straight into your neighbors while they're sleeping.

blackhawk2000
June 20, 2006, 11:06 PM
I'd rather use the AR.

It's shorter. It holds more ammo. It's quick to reload. 5.56 is a devastating round. Especially at close ranges. You could probably put 4-5 rounds of 5.56 center mass, in the amount of time it takes to do 2 with the shotgun. Even the crappiest vest will stop .12 gauge. You fire anything off inside, and your ears will pay for it. And dropping the bolt on an AR, is every bit as intimidating as pumping a shotgun. And shotguns are not guided missiles. They need to be aimed. The spread on any # shot at 7 yds, with any choke is going to be minimal.

Still 2 Many Choices!?
June 20, 2006, 11:16 PM
I prefer the AR, but I don't own a shotgun(yet:)). Both have to be aimed at HD ranges. Both could over penetrate. The shotgun is more of a liablility in my mind at these ranges, as it will be a,"ball of lead", as opposed to a single projectile to be accounted for. Drywall or sheetrock will not stop either round very well if you miss the intended target(depending on the load used). Both will do the job if you do. I really don't care, I have a brick exterior, and plan to do MY DAMNDEST NOT TO MISS:neener: :evil: ! (again it seems) Still 2 Many Choices!?

Bartholomew Roberts
June 21, 2006, 07:50 AM
Firing an AR or any high powered rifle inside your house in a urban/suburban area is just plain stupid.

Actually, an AR15 is less likely to be lethal than pistol calibers or buckshot after penetrating an interior wall when loaded with the correct ammo (http://www.theboxotruth.com/docs/theboxotruth.htm). Even with military FMJ ammo it often penetrates less than either pistol ammo or buckshot due to its tendency to fragment on interior walls from yawing at high velocity.

I'd go for a the shotgun loaded alternating 00 buck and slugs. If I had to choose a rifle it'd probably be something pistol caliber that won't go through walls and straight into your neighbors while they're sleeping.

If you are worried about penetrating multiple walls, shotgun slugs are probably not going to help you solve that problem.

dfaugh
June 21, 2006, 09:26 AM
Shotgun all the way. THE most versitile firearm. Depending on your situation you can load heavy birdshot (which WILL make a mess of the BG at shot range) buck or slugs. Or a mix. This is my FIRST choice for HD...If I need more firepower (in case there's a platoon invading!) it'll give me a chance to get keep the bad guys busy while I get to my hi-cap rifle.

1911 guy
June 21, 2006, 09:31 AM
Actually, GJJ, this discussion is more like someone discussing the topic after reading several text books on human anatomy and reproduction. This is balistics, weapon handling and wound statistics being discussed. Hang around and learn something. There is also a great amount of military, law enforcement and bad luck experience on this board. To say that "Nobody here..." is both innacurate and wishfull thinking.

Now for my take on the debate. I prefer a shotgun, but have an AR locked and unloaded. The shotgun pattern is enough at in house distances if placed on target, while the 5.56 doesn't produce maximum wound eficiency inside 50 yards. It'll work, for sure, but it's not optimal. As far as overpenetration, handgun bullets have a greater danger of overpenetration of drywall and studs than a high velocity, light for caliber, thinly jacketed bullet from an AR. That's not to say it's not a danger, we all know it is. But don't think your pistol caliber is going to be harmless on the other side of the wall.

Still 2 Many Choices!?
June 21, 2006, 11:42 AM
Making ANY correlation between shooting a person, and sex kinda bothers me for some reason:scrutiny:... Besides, shooting the B/G and coming out of a near death experience still alive, is probably better than sex:evil::D (irony intended)....
Still 2 Many Choices!?

PaladinX13
June 21, 2006, 12:31 PM
Well who knows until one knows right? That's basically his point.

On one hand we can have empirical data such as times innocents have been harmed by overpenetration (overblown fear or something that happens frequently in armed defenses?) or short-stroking (any documented cases of failures to defend due to this?) or statistically preferred size, frequency, and position... but ultimately your situation will be uniquely your situation when/if it happens.

Mannlicher
June 21, 2006, 12:49 PM
I am sticking with my Bushmaster XM15-E2S with EOTech. Despite the internet myth of 'shotgun invincibility', there are better platforms.

444
June 21, 2006, 01:19 PM
I think one of the big factors in this decison is which gun you are most comfortable with.

I own two shotguns equipped with Surefire dedicated foreend lights. I own a Surefire 900 series light for the ARs. I consider a dedicated weapon light on a long gun to be essential, but for me it is a wash: I have lights for both.

I have seen a number of people (up close and personal/hands on) that have been shot with shotguns as well as a number of people shot with medium bore rifles including AR15s. I have seen people shot with birdshot as well as buckshot (never saw anyone shot with a slug). I consider the wounding capabilities to be a wash: both provide horrific wounds at inside the house ranges. The rifle might be worse, but I wouldn't get hung up on it.

I have some experience with shotguns. I have hunted with a pump shotgun since childhood. I have shot a little trap and have shot 25 straight. I have taken Gunsite's shotgun class as well as Frontsight's shotgun class.

But, as someone else mentioned earlier, I consider myself a rifleman. I have FAR more trigger time with an AR. I have FAR more formal training with the carbine. I know I can manipulate my AR faster than a shotgun. I can put two rounds COM far faster than I can with a shotgun. I can take out multiple targets much faster with the AR.
Obviously, the answer for me would be the carbine. YMMV

As with most topics like this discussed on-line, people focus on the gun. They discuss the pros and cons of the mechanical hardware.
In reality, this isn't the issue at all.
You are the weapon, the shotgun/rifle is just a tool. Your training and your mindset are the issue, not what blaster you choose. Someone with good training and the right mindset will win the day. The person without either can have any weapon he wants and he will only get out alive due to luck.

GunFixer
June 21, 2006, 01:40 PM
"If I was worried about a group of ninjas, the henchmen of some evil genius, or a horde of zombies, I'd probably go with the AR."

Ha ha ha....I'm with him.

I don't think that it matters what load you have in a shotgun at close range. If you are 5 feet from a home invader all the pellets are going to hit the individual. 3" 6 shot or 2 3/4" 00 buck will still put a damper on the individual's day at that range. I am always going to opt for a scatter gun in close quarter situations. Plus, you have LESS of a chance that "shot" will penetrate the walls and go into your childs room or other room in the house.

chopinbloc
June 21, 2006, 06:31 PM
mr. roberts linked to the box o' truth and frankly, alot of the folks posting in this thread really need to read it before blindly repeating stuff they've heard.

personally, i keep my rifle and handgun close at hand and my shotgun locked up. i don't do this because the shotgun is no good for home defense but because:
1. i have a light on my rifle and no light on my shotgun.
2. i, personally, feel more confident with a rifle.

decide what you prefer and then get out and train.

it was mentioned earlier that the sight offset of an ar-15 negates the advantage of precision shots. i disagree. if you train at close range you will know how much to elevate your sights to put the shot within a few short millimeters of where you want it. now whether there is any real likelihood of having to take a headshot because a crook is holding a family member hostage is another matter. that said, the tool that i am most comfortable with also happens to be extremely versatile and that gives me a warm fuzzy feeling.

Zak Smith
June 21, 2006, 07:11 PM
Here are some of my thoughts about shotguns, which I wrote in response to a different thread over on AR15.com--

1. loading, loading, loading. Loading a shotgun is excrutiatingly SLOW, even if you have a 3Gun-gamer style setup with a bandoleer (like I run) or the belt Choate holders (like many other 3Gunners use). The best 3Gunners can reload at a rate of barely faster than 1 shell per second, when they are loading 3-4 at a time. EVERY round you fire and need to reload incurs a 1-4 second penalty for reloading. And that's if you carry extra rounds in an easily accessible carrier. Most people don't.

2. Capacity. Related to "loading", shotguns have less capacity than most defensive pistols.

When you contrast the above two points to a handgun or carbine:

The shotgun incurs a 1-4 second loading penalty PER SHOT FIRED.
The AR-15 incurs a 1-2 second loading pently PER MAGAZINE, amortized over the magazine that comes out to 33-66 thousandths of a second per round.

3. The manual of arms is significantly different from a pistol or AR-15. Pistols and AR-15 have BASICALLY the same manual of arms-- safety on thumb, mag release, mag goes in hole, rack slide, etc. Shotguns are entirely different from our primarily weapons platform (rifle) and secondary/CCW (pistol). Even shotgun A vs shotgun B can be vastly different. Hand a Remington shooter a Benelli and see him fumble with the alien manual of arms.

There are some applications where a shotgun is a better choice, some I can think of off the top of my head:

1. shooting flying things like birds (you know, hunting), or repelling attacking vampire/were-bats

2. shooting slugs at large things that want to eat you. A battle rifle would be a better choice in this case anyway.


Another issue is training. A lot of people think that a pump shotgun is a "load and forget" home-defense weapon. This conclusion is fatally flawed because shotguns require TRAINING and you have to AIM them. The most common malfunctions I see 3Gun shooters fall victim to are shooter-induced, and I see MORE pump shotgunners short-stroke the action than I see semi-autos malfunction on their own.

An AR-15 carbine is much shorter than a non-NFA shotgun, which makes it more maneuverable indoors (ie, home defense). The LOP on most shotguns is too long for short-statured people.


Just MHO...

B Easy
June 21, 2006, 09:15 PM
Personally I'd go with the AR too but not because of penetration issues.

Anyone who thinks that 5.56 fragments on dry wall should read this. 5.56 does NOT magically fragment when it hits drywall. Please, stop saying this, it's going to get someone killed one day.

http://www.theboxotruth.com/docs/bot14.htm

swingset
June 21, 2006, 09:18 PM
AR is better, the end.

dmckean44
June 21, 2006, 09:35 PM
Actually, an AR15 is less likely to be lethal than pistol calibers or buckshot after penetrating an interior wall when loaded with the correct ammo. Even with military FMJ ammo it often penetrates less than either pistol ammo or buckshot due to its tendency to fragment on interior walls from yawing at high velocity.

I've had some fun in the desert with drywall panels and cement blocks and I haven't found this to be true. Even .30 carbine would go though 6 consecutive panels of drywall. I live in a rural area so I'm not worried but I would never give people advice to fire rifles inside their urban houses no matter what the situation. Especially to those that live in an apartment.

Bartholomew Roberts
June 21, 2006, 10:00 PM
I've had some fun in the desert with drywall panels and cement blocks and I haven't found this to be true. Even .30 carbine would go though 6 consecutive panels of drywall.

Take a look at the link I provided. There isn't much that won't go through six layers of drywall that you would want to use on 200lb mammals.

Having said that...

1. How did you determine what the lethality was after the round had penetrated drywall?

2. What types of ammunition did you use and in what calibers?

beerslurpy
June 21, 2006, 10:48 PM
Zak, they make EBR based shotguns now.

http://tinypic.com/k0kmtw.jpg

My main argument against even a shotgun without the reloading speed penalty is that one 8 or 10 rd mag of 12 ga buck is teh same size and weight as a 40 rd RPK magazine. I can engage far more targets with a rifle than with a shotgun. A select fire rifle combines the best of both worlds, but I cant afford one of those.

Zak Smith
June 21, 2006, 11:21 PM
Good point on the "EBR" shotguns. It will be interesting to see how these pan out. They are still at a length disadvantage to a 16" CAR-15, I think.

sixth award expert
June 21, 2006, 11:57 PM
New at this site,but spent 8 years in the Marine Corps. We used to make entries with shotguns and MP-5's, M-16s would be for cover. I'm was an instructor of the shotgun. I own both but keep my 870 ready for somthing bad to happen, my AR-15 is in my gun safe, I also sleep with a Para Ordinece
1445. Maybe I'm a little paranoid?:confused: :confused: The shotgun is a better choice in my humble opinion!

Balddragn
June 22, 2006, 12:10 AM
My common sence - what's left of it - says shotgun. Distain of the BGs and the teenager inside wants to whip out the AR and 30 rnds of 223 Glasers.

cz75bdneos22
June 22, 2006, 04:04 PM
i live in a 2 story house in a cul de sac. neighbors/families to my left, right, front and back...most homes, the upstairs is only sheetrock/hardiplank. bottm is sheetrock and a thin, brick veneer on the outside...as i see it, entry would be from first level rear, at large rear sliding door, or side-entry through a 6x8 doubl;e window. my PD weapon choice would be first, my bed-side handgun, followed by shotgun and i would not use my rifle. ymmv i say personal defense, because if someone were to break into my home, HD is a failure. now, it's PD and i don't feel a handgun is not enough to stop an attack. if it comes to that at all. i'm not looking for a reason to kill. YMMV.

ArmedBear
June 22, 2006, 05:02 PM
Okay, let's clarify something about "pointing" vs. "aiming."

If you aim a weapon at a person who is advancing towards you, you won't have time to shoot. Aiming is what you do when you have a faraway target and want a very precise shot. It's slow, and it diminishes your peripheral vision.

When you aim, your eye is focused on the front sight (or on the image through a scope). Many people use only one eye, and close the other. With most scopes, you are only using one eye, even if the other eye is open. Sights made for aiming tend to be very easy to line up with great precision, e.g. square-notch target sights on a pistol.

When you point, your eyes are focused on the target. You generally can and do use both eyes, and you're still aware of what's going on in the greater area around the target. The sights are used peripherally, so you can tell if your eye is lined up with the gun; you also use your whole upper body (with training) as an additional means of doing this. This can be done with a standard M16. Ghost rings are okay, as are buckhorn sights like on a lever gun. Sights made for pointing tend to be less precise, but quicker to line up.

The three sighting systems actually MADE for pointing are ribs, "scout scopes" and red dots. Ribs are most often seen on shotguns, but dangerous game rifles (Express or Guide) rifles have them, too, for the same reason: quick acquisition of a moving target at close range. A "scout mount" scope also allows shooting with both eyes open and focused at a distance, but makes it really easy to see what you're going to hit. A red dot is probably the most sophisticated "pointing" sight, since it allows you to focus on the target while the dot shows you where you'll hit. Some holographic red dots even make the dot appear to be on the target, thus making it even more comfortable for your eyes to focus at distance.

Pointing works best with guns that have good geometry, so that when you raise them while looking at the target, the gun will already be pointed at the target. Guns known for this are the 1911, the Colt 1851 Navy and 1873 Single Action Army, nearly all traditionally-stocked shotguns as long as they fit the shooter, African express rifles, and traditional lever guns. AR's point pretty well, too. Guns that people complain about most include Glocks, because the grip angle isn't natural for many people, so the gun is pointing down when they raise it natually -- though the geometry must work well for lots of others. The point is that overall gun design matters, and the way it fits the shooter matters. If you have to fiddle around to line up the sights, you're aiming, not pointing.

I just want to dispel the misunderstanding that people have about "pointing". It does not mean "guessing and pulling the trigger." It's a skill that must be practiced.

High-scoring clay, 3-gun, Cowboy Action, and other high-speed competitors learn, by practice, to point. They don't aim at close and/or moving targets and win any matches. They become one with the gun, as silly as that may sound.

Pointing is HARDER than aiming, not easier. It's also a helluva lot faster. It's no good at legitimate rifle distances, but we WERE talking about home defense, not warfare. Pointing is worth learning. And you don't know how to shoot defensively is you can't point your gun. You just don't, end of story. The last thing you need to worry about if you can't point your gun is how many rounds you can carry in it! If you aim, you'd better score a perfect hit the first time.

Now as far as the per-shot "penalty" of using a shotgun, again, it depends if you think the scenario will require more than 72 projectiles to handle. There's no penalty unless you HAVE to reload. Chances are, you'll need one, maybe two trigger pulls with a shotgun, if any. And you can "top off" a shotgun, so I think the "penalty" is overstated for home defense. It's something to consider in case of a riot, though.

Do not, however, think a shotgun spreads enough to allow sloppy shooting. The purpose of the 9 pellets of 00 is devastating one-shot stop power because the spread is not at all big at close range. The spread is definitely not enough that you will squarely hit something with a shotgun that you'd miss with a rifle. Either way, the barrel has to be pointing directly at the target, so you need to be skilled in getting it that way, fast.

Zak Smith
June 22, 2006, 05:09 PM
ArmedBear,

Good post. We have covered "point shooting" aiming vs. "sighted aiming" (vs. the continuum of aiming methods) in other threads, and we could probably do without debating P.S. vs. anything else in this thread.

-z

ArmedBear
June 22, 2006, 05:11 PM
I'm not meaning to debate, at all; I just think people really do misunderstand what the words mean. I hope that was clear.

ctdonath
June 22, 2006, 10:52 PM
After much consideration, I'm switching my HD gun to an AR-15 SBR with silencer. Reasoning?

Shotgun:
- Large for indoor manuverability. Needs to be around 20" barrel plus action & stock for adequate capacity, which is kinda big.
- Capacity is limited. Few shotguns have enough, with (IMHO) 6 in mag being minimum. Higher capacity (8 for Mossberg 590) demands longer barrel.
- Reload time is slow. Reloading may not really be an option due to fumbling & inserting individual rounds.
- The "spread" is irrelevant indoors. Yes it spreads 1" per yard. We're talking indoor distances of 3-5 yards max, not outdoor winged game at a dozen or more yards. With a max indoor spread of 1-5", you don't get much spread.
- Shot spread, if any, diminishes effect. You're trying to stop a 6' healthy drugged/psyched hardbody male, not a duck. Any appreciable spread will degrade effectiveness dramatically.
- Loud. Very loud. While a secondary concern, I'd rather not damage/lose my hearing if possible.
- Penetration is limited. Walls and what may be beyond is of course a concern, but is much less so than making sure the target gets penetrated. Kevlar-hide perps may not be stopped.

Suppressed SBR:
- Compact. A short barreled rifle is about the same size as a comparable subgun. You're not going to get much more power in a room-friendly size.
- Capacity is considerable. A 20, 30, or even 40-round mag is compact & light - and right there. More rounds does not demand more length, and only slightly more height.
- Reloading is fast. Shove 1-2 mags in your pocket and you can reload dozens of rounds in a couple seconds.
- No spread. All that energy gets dumped where you put it. Hostage-type shots are viable. Distance is irrelevant.
- Silence (so to speak) is an option. While not cheap and not available everywhere, sticking a silencer on the end reduces the flash-bang problem. I'd rather not blow out my own ears and blind my eyes in the process, if possible.
- Penetration is assured. Penetration is one key to stopping power. Perps with Kevlar hides can still be stopped. Shooting thru cover, while strongly not recommended, is an option.

Tack on a red-dot co-witnessed sight, add a flashlight, and a short AR becomes a preferred home-defense gun.

Most of the pro-shotgun views I see tout the "scare 'em" noise and "general direction" aiming. While a shotgun is surely a formidible HD weapon, I prefer quiet precision that will penetrate and will not likely run dry.

444
June 22, 2006, 11:59 PM
One point though:
"short barreled rifle is about the same size as a comparable subgun".

Very true until you add the suppressor. Then a 11.5" AR becomes a little longer than a 16" AR w/o suppressor.
No big deal, just a minor point.
This would make an excellent indoors weapon.

taliv
June 23, 2006, 12:21 AM
since we're nitpicking :)

Shooting thru cover, while strongly not recommended, is an option.

you mean "concealment"



seriously though, i agree with several of those points and was using the ar15 for HD instead of a shotgun, until i bought a PS90.

B Easy
June 23, 2006, 01:07 AM
I'm no lawyer, but I'm pretty sure that if you nail a guy with a suppressed SBR, they're gonna say that you're the type of guy who looks for trouble.

To be quite honest, I think that the suppressor is a bad idea. Even if you don't get nailed for the suppressor itself, it still just isn't as effective.

To make it useful, you're gonna want to go subsonic, which means decreased velocity (22 lr velocities) and sketchy cycling.

Versus...11.5" barrel with a nasty Noveske flash suppressor on it. It's significantly shorter, you can use full velocity ammo with it, and it'll cycle just fine.

swingset
June 23, 2006, 01:53 AM
I'm no lawyer, but I'm pretty sure that if you nail a guy with a suppressed SBR, they're gonna say that you're the type of guy who looks for trouble.

To be quite honest, I think that the suppressor is a bad idea. Even if you don't get nailed for the suppressor itself, it still just isn't as effective.

To make it useful, you're gonna want to go subsonic, which means decreased velocity (22 lr velocities) and sketchy cycling.

Versus...11.5" barrel with a nasty Noveske flash suppressor on it. It's significantly shorter, you can use full velocity ammo with it, and it'll cycle just fine.

You know of a single case where a gun owner was convicted or charged in an otherwise good shoot for using an SBR or suppressed gun to defend himself?

And, the suppressor isn't about remaining silent...it's about reducing the shock of a rifle indoors, where having the muzzle next to your head is very very bad. Wonder why entry teams use suppressors? It's not about going stealth. Going subsonic with a rifle caliber, especially a .223 that needs to hit high vel. to properly fragment is retarded.

carpettbaggerr
June 23, 2006, 04:08 AM
You know of a single case where a gun owner was convicted or charged in an otherwise good shoot for using an SBR or suppressed gun to defend himself?

Gary Fadden comes to mind:

Every self-defense shooting I've run across with a Class III weapon, however justified, has at the very least ended with the shooter facing a grand jury. Asked what he thinks would have happened if he'd shot Hamilton with a Remington 870 Wingmaster instead, Fadden replies with certainty, "I would have gone home that night. I've told dozens of people since, 'Do not use a Class III weapon for personal defense."

http://www.subguns.com/boards/mgmsgarchive.cgi?noframes;read=468242

ctdonath
June 23, 2006, 07:39 AM
Then a 11.5" AR becomes a little longer than a 16" AR w/o suppressor. Still shorter than a suitable shotgun, and I'll be able to discuss the incident afterwards (vs. "huh? what?")
you mean "concealment"Yes, I did.
if you nail a guy with a suppressed SBR, they're gonna say that you're the type of guy who looks for trouble.1. No, obviously trouble found me, and it's a darn good thing I prepared. Happened IN MY HOME.
2. If they object to the suppressor, then I'll happily demo unsuppressed to the jury. Indoors. No hearing protection. 11.5" barrel. Full-power military-grade ammo. Oh, judge won't allow it for obvious reasons (severe hearing damage)? well that's exactly why I got & used it - at significant personal cost.
3. SBR probably won't bother anyone; not exactly portrayed as EEEEEVIL in society.
4. Police increasingly use such setups. Good enough for cops, good enough for me. Cops weren't there when I needed 'em, so good thing I had comparable tools.
5. Having to not once, but TWICE (2 NFA items) get a thorough fingerprints-included background check, federal permission, sheriff permission, and pay hundreds of dollars in taxes should assure anyone that I'm a proven good guy.
This issue has been kicked around a lot on NFA boards. Usual conclusion is NFA won't be a problem so long as it isn't a machinegun.
with a nasty Noveske flash suppressor on itYou tell me how bad a silencer will be, then use the term "nasty" to describe your solution?
<Fadden case>Fadden wasn't home, and IIRC he used a machinegun.
I don't mind a grand jury, as their job is to say whether the case comes merely close to being worth a trial.

Lou629
June 23, 2006, 08:04 AM
The "spread" is irrelevant indoors. Yes it spreads 1" per yard. We're talking indoor distances of 3-5 yards max, not outdoor winged game at a dozen or more yards. With a max indoor spread of 1-5", you don't get much spread.

Sounds like more than enough to me, as opposed to a spread of what, .223? :neener: If i could only have one shot, then i think i'd rather take the one that's 1-5" wide.

swingset
June 23, 2006, 08:37 AM
Carpetbagger, Fadden's case was extraordinary, not in his home, and he remained a free man. Poorer? Yes, but he's a free man.

A good shoot is a good shoot, and if you're a Class III owner defending your home, the choice of your weapon is irrelevant. Even a zealous DA won't be able to shut the door on you for a suppressor or SBR if you're defending your life in your own home. Hasn't happened, not likely to happen any time soon.

B Easy
June 23, 2006, 04:21 PM
ctdonath, in criminal court it won't affect you.

In civil court, if you've got a scratch that *looks* like a bodycount strike, they're going to bring it up.

Civil court is a circus. Whether or not it'd weigh heavily is one thing, but the prosecution would DEFINATELY bring it up in a civil case.


Edited for non-THR comment. See Rule #2 (http://www.thehighroad.org/code-of-conduct.html)
You can disagree with other members, even vehemently, but it must be done in a well-mannered form. Attack the argument, not the arguer. - BR

ctdonath
June 23, 2006, 08:01 PM
They go to civil court, _I_ go to civil court. I'd have no problem suing the pants off the estate of some guy who bashes his way into my home at oh-dark-thirty and behaves in so dangerously reckless a manner that I actually have to do something horrible to him out of fear for my life - wasn't my choice, it was his. 10x whatever he (or his estate) sues me for should be enough to cover damages, emotional lifelong trauma, expenses suffered, and punative.

ctdonath
June 23, 2006, 08:02 PM
If i could only have one shot, then i think i'd rather use the one that's 1-5" wide.Awright, let's consider HD single-shot-only scenarios.

The first that leaps to mind is: hostage. If a home invader is holding my wife as a shield, I do NOT want a variable-width load. An AR may shoot 2" below the sights, but at least I know that and can compensate to deliver a precise shot. I can't narrow the damage radius on a shotgun ("'scuze me while I swap chambered buckshot for a slug...").

Next is penetration: an invader with a Kevlar hide is presumably seriously prepared to do me extreme harm. That first shot had better penetrate - not just wind him, not just nick him, not just cause compression injury, I want high-velocity thru-and-thru. Birdshot & buckshot & fat slugs won't. Pistol rounds won't. Rifle rounds will, and one shot will likely be enough (with more to follow fast from a semi-auto).

Penetration redux: should he duck behind a wall in a still-a-threat manner, and firing thru cover is reasonable & responsible (rare), shots fired thru the cover medium should penetrate enough to do the job if he's in the line of fire. Two layers of drywall will likely render buck/birdshot ineffective, but .223 or better will probably do enough to discourage him. The odds of hitting the right location is low (and I hate blind "spray-and-pray" so it pains me to write this), so the one ball coincidentally heading in the right direction had better work.

Should the conflict move outside for some reason, buckshot effectiveness rapidly drops off with distance, birdshot even faster (with the initial premise involving shot spread, slugs aren't really an option here). For a rifle, even from a relatively anemic 11.5" barrel, effectiveness reaches well out beyond he's-not-a-threat-anymore ranges while retaining MOA accuracy.

If my lethal adversary is a clear and un-armored target in the same room, then buckshot would be preferred ... but rifle ammo will also do well.

Finally, pulling the trigger at oh-dark-thirty means enough noise & light to possibly induce discombobulation (as if going to Condition Red then wasn't enough). I can put a suppressor on a rifle, but not a shotgun; without it, you may not get much of a second shot - and when discussing one-shot HD scenarios, I want a second-shot option.

I don't mean to completely belittle the shotgun. A big messy hole will do a fine job of stopping most nocturnal invaders. 81 9mm projectiles launched in just 9 trigger pulls will discourage most rather rapidly; heck, 9 on the first shot should be enough, even if some miss. It's certainly a respectable HD tool. I'm just concerned about instant precision, adequate penetration, and going deaf/blind on the first pop.

1911 guy
June 24, 2006, 08:28 AM
I'm kinda sorta alright with either one. I'm not too concerned about the spread of shot pellets because our house isn't all that big. Longest shot would be fron the front door, down the hall, to the back door. About 50 feet. Not a pinpoint weapon, but not a barn door sized pattern, either.

As far as muzzle blast indoors, I'd call it a draw. Either one will make your ears ring. I was in a situation where several .223's were going off at the same time in an enclosed space. Lot's of rounds in a few seconds and the sound actually made me feel ill. Went away about 5 or 10 mins. later.

wixedmords
June 24, 2006, 07:03 PM
It would be a little closer with an AR pistol, but not by much. The .223 or 5.56 also has pretty heavy penetration, likely unusable in a home defense scenerio. It would somewhat depend on if you lived alone or had family. Only you would know how your place is layed out.

The 12 guage is a great defensive weapon.

jason10mm
June 26, 2006, 09:48 AM
That box o truth test was interesting. Certianly seems to contradict the FBI tests. But even so, all it shows is that 5.56 and buckshot BOTH penetrate 4 sheets of drywall. So what would you rather have, ONE round of 5.56 go through a wall, or NINE pellets? Seems like the shotgun gives a MUCH greater chance of injuring folks since there are more projectile to account for. Obvioulsy if the bad guy is in close the pellets won't have time to spread, but if you miss those things are going to go everywhere.

And birdshot WILL penetrate the torso and go clear through to the spine, ricochet and end up all over the chest and abdominal cavities. Granted, it was a near contact shot and the pellets were still clumped, but to say that birdshot will just leave a flesh wound with no qualifiers is distracting. At a few meters it will still work well. Cheney's buddy is living proof that at distance birdshot looses its oomph, but from 6 feet away it can still kill.

Bartholomew Roberts
June 26, 2006, 11:02 AM
But even so, all it shows is that 5.56 and buckshot BOTH penetrate 4 sheets of drywall.

But what it doesn't show is which round is more lethal after penetrating the four walls. Usually that will be the round with the most momentmum

So what would you rather have, ONE round of 5.56 go through a wall, or NINE pellets?

Also important to note that both .223 and the shotgun pellets deviated from their original point of aim considerably after passing through the drywall.

And birdshot WILL penetrate the torso and go clear through to the spine, ricochet and end up all over the chest and abdominal cavities. Granted, it was a near contact shot and the pellets were still clumped, but to say that birdshot will just leave a flesh wound with no qualifiers is distracting.

We had a good discussion on this not too long ago.
http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=181618&highlight=birdshot

Personally, I don't like birdshot because at the distances where I feel confident it will retain its effectiveness, you are already way too close to the intruder. I've talked with a person who was shot at a distance of 15' in the upper torso with birdshot. He made his own 911 call.

greg700
June 26, 2006, 02:34 PM
Up until recently I kept a shotgun ready as my primary home defense weapon. Then I started thinking about how bulky and awkward it was, as well as how much more familiar I am with ar-15's/M-4's and I decided to keep my ar next to be bed instead because it is what I have trained on. I figure my familiarity with my ar-15 will make up for any performance gap.

chopinbloc
June 26, 2006, 03:18 PM
The .223 or 5.56 also has pretty heavy penetration

okay, seriously. read box o' truth and ammo oracle before you go and say stuff like that. there is no effective round that won't penetrate multiple layers of drywall. the 5.56mm like buckshot, may or may not exit the target but neither is likely to have much energy left over if they do.

birdshot tends to make very ugly, very shallow wounds at any reasonable defensive distance.

even though this sort of topic is oft revisited i love reading and debating the subject. if we're going to do so, however, can't we at least debate the real advantages and disadvantages of the particular platforms?

ArmedBear
June 26, 2006, 03:42 PM
I figure my familiarity with my ar-15 will make up for any performance gap.

That's probably the bottom line, whichever gun you choose. If you hunt and practice with an 870, that's probably your best choice because you can use it in your sleep. If you shoot matches and plink with an AR, then it is for the same reason.

clange
June 27, 2006, 02:46 AM
Awright, let's consider HD single-shot-only scenarios.

The first that leaps to mind is: hostage. If a home invader is holding my wife as a shield, I do NOT want a variable-width load. An AR may shoot 2" below the sights, but at least I know that and can compensate to deliver a precise shot. I can't narrow the damage radius on a shotgun ("'scuze me while I swap chambered buckshot for a slug...").
Valid point, although that would be a pretty risky shot to pull off. I'd take it if no other options, but if it isnt perfect and you dont shut them down right away the hostage could get a bullet, knife, etc.

Next is penetration: an invader with a Kevlar hide is presumably seriously prepared to do me extreme harm. That first shot had better penetrate - not just wind him, not just nick him, not just cause compression injury, I want high-velocity thru-and-thru. Birdshot & buckshot & fat slugs won't. Pistol rounds won't. Rifle rounds will, and one shot will likely be enough (with more to follow fast from a semi-auto).
If the first load or two of 00 buck isnt doing anything the next one is going at their head. (semi-auto saiga-12 for what its worth, so rate of fire isnt a concern)

Penetration redux: should he duck behind a wall in a still-a-threat manner, and firing thru cover is reasonable & responsible (rare), shots fired thru the cover medium should penetrate enough to do the job if he's in the line of fire. Two layers of drywall will likely render buck/birdshot ineffective, but .223 or better will probably do enough to discourage him. The odds of hitting the right location is low (and I hate blind "spray-and-pray" so it pains me to write this), so the one ball coincidentally heading in the right direction had better work.
The 5.56 does not have a penetration advantage through drywall. If thats what you're looking for you'd actually be better off with a pistol caliber carbine or higher power rifle.

Should the conflict move outside for some reason, buckshot effectiveness rapidly drops off with distance, birdshot even faster (with the initial premise involving shot spread, slugs aren't really an option here). For a rifle, even from a relatively anemic 11.5" barrel, effectiveness reaches well out beyond he's-not-a-threat-anymore ranges while retaining MOA accuracy.
Why arent slugs an option? Have some slugs ready to go on a side saddle, or in my case with a saiga-12 have a mag with slugs ready to go, or have the bottom half of the mag be slugs, etc.

If my lethal adversary is a clear and un-armored target in the same room, then buckshot would be preferred ... but rifle ammo will also do well.

Finally, pulling the trigger at oh-dark-thirty means enough noise & light to possibly induce discombobulation (as if going to Condition Red then wasn't enough). I can put a suppressor on a rifle, but not a shotgun; without it, you may not get much of a second shot - and when discussing one-shot HD scenarios, I want a second-shot option.
Moot point for me and many others. I cannot legally own a suppressor in MO.

I don't mean to completely belittle the shotgun. A big messy hole will do a fine job of stopping most nocturnal invaders. 81 9mm projectiles launched in just 9 trigger pulls will discourage most rather rapidly; heck, 9 on the first shot should be enough, even if some miss. It's certainly a respectable HD tool. I'm just concerned about instant precision, adequate penetration, and going deaf/blind on the first pop.
I understand, but IMO the first is the only time the rifle has an advantage, and it gives things up in other areas (like 9 shells of 00 buck ready to go as fast as I can pull the trigger). There is simply no way a semi-auto rifle can do as much damage in as little time as a semi-auto 12ga. In half a second or less I could have 18 ~.30cal sized pellets going toward someone.

CCWMAN
June 27, 2006, 04:03 AM
The 12 guage is way to big/heavy for indoors, has too much recoil and too much blast for me. I'd use an AR-15, an Uzi Carbine, or a pistol.

XavierBreath
June 27, 2006, 06:55 AM
Either weapon can make an effective home defense tool.

What must be remembered, however, is the tool does not do the job at hand. The man's skill with the tool and his willingness to use that skill to preserve his life and family is what allows for survival in a lethal encounter.

If I were a home invader, I would rather face a man with both an AR and a shotgun but no training in their use rather than enter the home of a man with a knife and the skill and willingness to kill with it. It is the person using the tool, and their level of training that makes the difference, not the tool itself.

FWIW I chose the 18 inch pump shotgun with standard wood furniture, as much for it's reliability and stopping power as it's innocuous appearance in front of a jury. The encounter is not over until you walk out of the courtroom.

Correia
June 27, 2006, 11:56 AM
B Easy, have you ever shot a suppressed .223? Despite what you hear on the internet, the "sonic crack" isn't really that loud. It is more of a chuff noise to the shooter. Even indoors, the suppessed .223 is much-much-much quieter.

I love taking suppresors to the range, because it really blows most shooters minds. There is just such a misconception out there about the sonic boom. The only reason to ever use subsonic ammo is when you want it to be really quiet.

My next AR build is going to be an 11.5 inch gun with a Tac 65 can. :)

Zak Smith
June 27, 2006, 12:09 PM
A suppressed 223 fired inside an enclosed space is quite a bit louder than shooting one outside, and for me it is well above the threshold of pain and causes some ringing. Of course a non-suppressed 223 fired in an enclosed space is going to be EXTREMELY loud.

-z

ArmedBear
June 27, 2006, 12:17 PM
BTW, there's a lot to be said for a handgun.

It's small, fits conveniently in a drawer or a quick-access safe, and it can be fired effectively with one hand. If you're actually defending yourself and your family from, say, a knife-wielding thug, you might end up with a hurt hand. It's nice to be able to just use the other hand to shoot.

Just a thought...

Correia
June 27, 2006, 12:20 PM
Zak, agreed.

I still wear plugs when I shoot suppressed, mostly because your head is right over the action. People standing ten feet away can carry on a normal conversation. I can shoot outdoors with out plugs, with no discomfort, but I wouldn't recommend it.

Indoors you want plugs, but having shot a .223 indoors, without hearing protection, the suppresor is a whole lot nicer. I once cranked off a magazine of .223 in a tiny concrete basement with no hearing protection, and it really was debilitating. (and stupid. One of the stupider things I've ever done. Yes, I know.) :p

davek
June 27, 2006, 12:36 PM
I have a multi-layered approach. I will use my 1911 to fight to my shotgun, then I'll use the shotgun to fight to my AR. I will then clear the house hollaring "clear" when ever I leave a room. The old plan also included a shoulder roll in the living room 'cause it's the only room with a large enough open space, but we just put hardwood floors in and think it would hurt too much now. :(

I dunno. Maybe a low crawl?

Correia
June 27, 2006, 12:45 PM
daveK, get some elbow pads. They are tactical, and you can still roll on hardwood. :)

petr
June 27, 2006, 12:59 PM
shotgun hands down.

Has anyone posted this link? Wow, enlightening to say the least.

http://smith-wessonforum.com/eve/forums/a/tpc/f/550103904/m/5471026821/p/8

trbon8r
June 27, 2006, 01:10 PM
I'll stick with my 870P Max with Surefire light.

The fact that a shotgun is slow to reload is irrelevant in a home defense situation. We are talking about at most a pair of scumbags breaking in to rob the place. Seven rounds is plenty for that situation.

When you hear a noise and jump out of bed buck naked and half asleep in the middle of the night, are you going to throw on your web gear for your AR complete with spare magazines? I doubt it. You will use what you have in the gun and that's it.

AndyC
June 27, 2006, 01:26 PM
Funny - when I was a kid growing up in South Africa, I used to read US gun magazines and wonder why the writers seemed to be so concerned about a bullet penetrating a wall (our houses are made typically of a few layers of brick).

Of course, now that I'm here and living in an apartment (and having to put up with the elephants playing above me), I can understand the problem.

Shotgun for me.

444
June 27, 2006, 01:41 PM
"There is simply no way a semi-auto rifle can do as much damage in as little time as a semi-auto 12ga. "

Not to belabor this point, but what are you basing this on ?
Other similar posts have been made, not trying to single you out.


This has already been addressed but the idea that a suppressed AR15 using supersonic ammo is too loud but an 11.5" unsuppressed AR15 isn't is kind of a reach ?

Marshall
June 27, 2006, 01:44 PM
Heck, might as well weigh in too. Shotgun, hands down! :)

chopinbloc
June 27, 2006, 04:20 PM
444, i think correia meant he was going to attach a suppressor to the sbr.


The fact that a shotgun is slow to reload is irrelevant in a home defense situation. We are talking about at most a pair of scumbags breaking in to rob the place.

sorry, must have missed that line in the rules and regulations of home invasion. hope the crooks know they can only use two guys. hate to see 'em break the rules. 'course even two people can give you (singular, as in ONE PERSON) problems if they decide to break the bell curve and actually stick it out and fight.

how 'bout this one: they have it on good authority that you have alot of guns in your house and they decide that since they are badder than you and have gained experience by pistol whipping crack heads and stealing old ladies' medication, they think that they should have no problem knocking you off for your guns and they come in with the intention of shooting it out. further, maybe one has an old, beat up gun show ballistic vest and the other has a fresh, point blank level IIIA stolen from a cop.

oh, you're right - the above scenario is unlikely. is it impossible? if you're only concerned about what is likely, why keep ANY firearm nearby and readily accesible? it is unlikely that your home will be invaded.


i'd prefer to be prepared for everything that i can without putting myself in prison or going bankrupt.

WeedWhacker
June 27, 2006, 04:36 PM
"There is simply no way a semi-auto rifle can do as much damage in as little time as a semi-auto 12ga. "

Not to belabor this point, but what are you basing this on ?
Other similar posts have been made, not trying to single you out.

Each trigger pull of the semi-auto rifle gets you a .223-.308-ish ball of lead. Each trigger pull of the semi-auto shotgun gets you NINE-ish .30 cal. balls of lead (with 00 buck, I think).

I'm switching to a shotgun for home. :)

lurkersince03
June 27, 2006, 05:15 PM
How about a Tromix converted Saiga 12?

http://www.tromix.com/Images/12plus6duo_wb.jpg

chopinbloc
June 27, 2006, 06:40 PM
though they definitely score cool points and i wouldn't feel too poorly armed with one, they are still rather big and bulky for home defense. they also suffer the magazine capacity issue that most every other shotgun suffers, though they don't take nearly as long to reload. now a registered short barreled shotgun version would really start to take up alot of ground on the rifle but i would still prefer the rifle for capacity, compactness (is that a word?), lightweight and fast, precise shots.

444
June 27, 2006, 06:49 PM
"Each trigger pull of the semi-auto rifle gets you a .223-.308-ish ball of lead. Each trigger pull of the semi-auto shotgun gets you NINE-ish .30 cal. balls of lead (with 00 buck, I think). "

The point I am trying to make here is: Have you ever actually seen what a gunshot wound from a rifle at close range looks like ?
Or are you basing this on something you read on the internet ?
Those .223-.308 balls of lead blow GREAT BIG HOLES through people at close range.

I was talking about this:
"To make it useful, you're gonna want to go subsonic, which means decreased velocity (22 lr velocities) and sketchy cycling. Versus...11.5" barrel with a nasty Noveske flash suppressor on it. It's significantly shorter, you can use full velocity ammo with it, and it'll cycle just fine."
A suppressor is only useful if you are using subsonic ammo, but an 11.5" barreled AR15 is Ok ? If you are having cycling problems when using a suppressor, you got major problems.

Tsonda
June 27, 2006, 07:19 PM
I actually keep an AR for the go to gun, but have an 870 close at hand and a 1911. Dang it sounds like I am expecting a 3 gun match to break out in the living room.:)

To the poster that stated the AR being semi auto and more likely to malfuntion. I have short stroked and 870 more than any of my AR have "jammed". My newest Bushy have had one problem that being a spring break in the bolt hold open. A couple of mags have not feed the last round after a break in period they are now good to go.

As for aiming, while I am far from the most experienced person on this board I have had more trouble with the shotgun during matches than any other weapon. I have shot to low on every steel, due to not aiming enough. I once watched a friend shoot the target in either shoulder before busting balloon in the center. No novice Ed has two tours in Iraq and has seen the elephant. After the run he stated "you do have to aim the shotgun and some always has to prove it.

Shotguns are fun don't get me wrong but in a serious social situation give me an AR or FAL.

Just my two pesos worth, and probably not worth that.

Regards,

James

lurkersince03
June 27, 2006, 08:00 PM
Okay, then how about this?

http://www.tromix.com/Images/SAR-1.jpg

Or an even shorter barrel.

http://www.tromix.com/Images/slotted-handle.jpg

They're no bigger or bulkier than an AR. These are lightweight and compact and can also deliver fast, precise shots. Magazine capacity can be as many as 8-rounds. That's Mossberg 590 length-territory, without the hassle of round-by-round reloads, as well as with the added advantage of having quick, magazine-fed capability.

I think most firearm platforms have their own niche, and the AR-15 is very multi-versatile, but if you ask me, something like the 12-gauge Tromix conversions above are simply better at filling that CQB/short-range niche than an AR-15's .223/5.56. The only problem then, would be going through the legal processes to register and obtain the SBS [Short Barreled Shotgun(s)] in the first place.

By the way, chopinbloc, based on that scenario, all regard for overpenetration and ballistics go out the window. So do all concern for potential legal impacts, since if it were revealed in court/to a grand-jury that they were armed, armored, and determined, you could use a legally owned, fully automatic M2 .50 Cal turret bolted onto the carpet of your bedroom and still be justified (provided you didn't hit/kill an innocent bystander 5 miles away in another neighborhood...... okay, so that was a little over the top). Also, even someone getting hit with 12 gauge low recoil buckshot while wearing Level IIIA armor is going to feel it regardless. More importantly, once you get into the situational what-ifs concerning gun fighting, all bets are off. There are an innumerable amount of factors that go into play, making gun fights entirely impossible to predict. Just as unlikely as your scenario is, it is equally unlikely, however entirely possible, that a man with a .22LR S&W revolver could take out/disable three professional, armored and armed intruders (let's pretend they're crooks, not SWAT, please) with some well-placed face/head shots all with a single cylinder. Unlikely? Yeah. Impossible? Nope. But will it make people want to start arming themselves with .22LR's for HD? That, I'll bet, is unlikely.

Correia
June 28, 2006, 02:45 PM
Lurker, I've got a couple 8 and 12 inch Saiga conversions in stock right now. Actually they are much smaller than a 16" AR. The 8 inch gun is about the same size as an MP5. :)

chopinbloc
June 28, 2006, 04:16 PM
lurker, not only do i clearly see your side of this issue, you are starting to give me impure thoughts.:rolleyes:

once you get into the situational what-ifs concerning gun fighting, all bets are off

i strongly agree and that's why i hesitated to post the idea. i merely meant to counter the idea that armored individuals NEVER break into people's houses and present the notion that i prefer to be prepared for the widest range of possibilities. of the tools i have at hand, the ar is what i will keep handy. that said, i have a new lust that i simply must fulfill at the expense of driving myself into poverty. DOH! :cuss:

oh, and correia, any chance you could post some gun porn of those saiga conversions to give me something to drool over while i save my pennies?

Soybomb
June 29, 2006, 01:25 AM
Here's my take on it:
(disclaimer - I have a 870P with a surefire foreend and want an ar15 with a surefire)


You're already preparing for the unexpected and unlikely. Its unlikely someone breaking into your home will have armor, but its unlikely someone will break into your home. Where do you draw the line?
Pump are reliable, unless you short stroke it under pressure that you're not used to having. Unless you have an unusually sandy bedroom it seems unlikely that something will gum up the ar15's works.
If I have to shoot multiple targets, I can do it faster with an ar15 than 870.
Any round that is sufficient to go through a bad guy is going to go through plenty of drywall. If you're lucky the .223 will tumble and be far off the central mass height area you were aiming at. The buckshot won't. I wouldn't want to stand 2 rooms over from either, but if I had to it'd be from the .223.
I can miss my target 29 times with the ar15 and still get a chance to hit before I have to reload. Only 6 chances with the 870. No one ever says how easy it is to hit moving targets in self defense or how they had too much ammo.


One of my friends was the victim of a home invasion by 3 armed men who kicked down his door and were on him very quickly. I feel more confident I could have 3 central mass shots places more quickly with an ar15 than my 870. And if they were wearing armor, more effective shots too. Thats unlikely and a worst case scenario, but if it can handle that, I trust it to handle less drastic scenarios with ease. Ymmv. Shotguns are fun and I won't be selling mine, but I think a ar15 carbine might just be the best indoor use weapon yet.

ctdonath
July 2, 2006, 06:42 PM
(Re: Kevlar) If the first load or two of 00 buck isnt doing anything the next one is going at their head.With a rifle round, Kevlar likely won't be a problem. I'd rather not have to cycle thru 2-3 rounds for the same effect given time & urgency.
Why arent slugs an option? Have some slugs ready to go on a side saddleAs I said, the initial premise involved shot spread (the "you don't have to aim precisely" theory). If you have slugs on the side, then they're not instantly there. Handy, yes, but I want to put that threat down NOW without fumbling with anything more than inserting rounds 31-60.
IMO the first is the only time the rifle has an advantageFirst shot is most important, as hopefully it will be the last.

pcf
July 2, 2006, 06:57 PM
It's certainly not a stretch of the imagination, to need to prepare for badguys that wear body soft armor. It's not a stretch for badguys to obtain hard armor (Level III and up).

What if your six rounds from your rifle doesn't do squat?

Defeating armor has a alot more to do with mindset, training, and tactics, than having a rifle. A rifle is better against soft armor, but hard armor more or less puts the rifle and shotgun on a level playing field.

If you're preparing to encounter the guy that is prepared to have an all out gunfight with you. I wouldn't stake my survival on the bad guy's lack of preparedness.

ctdonath
July 3, 2006, 12:40 AM
It's not a stretch for badguys to obtain hard armor (Level III and up). What if your six rounds from your rifle doesn't do squat? Lowest level hard armor (IIRC, past midnight & I'm tired) involves ceramic plates which will stop the FIRST hit, but not subsequent ones. It also covers only a small body area, not general coverage.

If six rounds don't work, I'll still have 24 more in the mag. Maybe I'll just make 'em green-tip penetrator rounds.

Buckshot sure won't be helping in this case.

Part of this exercise is to determine what common/reasonable steps can be taken to cover "diminishing returns" scenarios. Choose a rifle or a shotgun - reasonable choice. Stick in a 30-round mag - ok. Load it with green-tip whatever-the-designation-is - not bizzare. Slap on a silencer - not unusual in most states.

Anything else to throw at the scenario?

I do realize there comes a point where the dragon wins. I accept that.

TooTaxed
July 3, 2006, 01:34 AM
Shotgun!..the AR15 over-penetrates, and the .224 bullet doesn't have the shock power of a single .30-cal #1 buckshot pellet. You are shooting at short range...20 or 30 foot max? A 12-ga #1 buck shell contains 16 ea .30 balls, which is superb for street or house-to-house fighting. (I prefer #1 buck loads to 00 buck, which only has nine balls and spreads more at distance.) One shot will blanket an entire door or window across the street and is the practical equivalent of an entire clip from a submachinegun. One shot from a shotgun will definitely take out your perpetrator...not so with an AR-15.:evil:

444
July 3, 2006, 02:10 AM
:rolleyes:

Yeager
July 3, 2006, 07:45 AM
Your all missing the fact that one cannot be a real man without a shotgun! :neener:

Ranger J
July 3, 2006, 10:49 AM
My old Mossberg 12g 500 with the old cylinder bore smooth bore, short ‘deer’ barrel on it, loaded with a ‘light’ load of birdshot. I think with the plug out the gun will hold 7 or 8 shots. I can’t imagine anyone still being around if I had to empty the gun. Modern shells loaded with birdshot are devastating at close range. I once removed an ‘illegal’ deer stand with a 20g loaded with birdshot and it was blowing great hunks off 2x4s. The shot cup itself will do a lot of damage at close range. Sorry to say that the birdshot will probably damage your paneling or drywall just as much as buckshot at the range you would probably shoot a BG.
RJ

Marshall
July 3, 2006, 12:42 PM
7 or 9 semi-automatic shots from a sleek and trim shotgun is tough to beat for home defense. The ability to shoot buck, bird shot, slugs or a combination of them is a great benefit. I like the Saiga but I don't like the bulk associated with it as the one has in the previously posted pic. If we could have full auto and the ability to shoot short bursts, an AR type weapon would be nice. I would still be apprehensive though because of over penetration. I don't want a rifle bullet exiting my home and entering my neighbors home.


http://www.fnhusa.com/contents/guns_525px/fn_sg_selfloading.gif


http://www.fnhusa.com/contents/guns_525px/fn_sg_slpmk1.gif

Still 2 Many Choices!?
July 3, 2006, 12:50 PM
I'll change my answer to the AR-15 with the,"Key to the City", option hanging underneath...Using a shortened 870, and some of those really short(and cool), shotgun shells I will have 60 rounds for the AR-15(two coupled 30 round mags), and 6 for the shottie:evil: ! Best of both worlds:neener: ...
Now I just gotta go SBR my AR15, and buy an SBS 870; then bring on the,"Goblins":uhoh: :scrutiny: !

Really guys, either firearm(or a pair of scissors) will do the job if you will prepare enough, but some internet disscusions are a good stress relief. Sorta like:banghead:!

Still 2 Many Choices!?

Heavy Metal Hero
September 17, 2006, 03:37 PM
I am not sure if this has been brought up yet...I only read til page 5.

Wouldn't .223 JHP solve the over penetration problem?

I would also think a 9mm upper for your AR-15 would be a great HD weapon. Think about...9mm JHP output great energy and with sten mags you can load up to 32 rounds.

I may be wrong about these things but I would think these would work well and solve many problems.

Also I appologize for rezzing a dead post on my first post. I thought it was worth it.

B yond
September 17, 2006, 04:58 PM
IMHO, using an AR as a homedefense weapon is irresponsible unless you live alone in the middle of the woods. Overpenetration is a major concern, as well as the fact that at close range (not point-blank) an AR will poke holes in a BG who may still be able to get to you before he bleeds to death.

Personally I use a Mossberg 500 12 gauge and aim for the pelvis. At close range it could take off their legs and at longer ranges it only takes one pellet hitting the pelvic bone to stop them from coming at you.

Besides, aiming for the goodies will stop the BG from reproducing and therefore make the world a safer place for future generations.:D

Heavy Metal Hero
September 17, 2006, 05:11 PM
Well .223 JHPs don't just "poke holes."

Besides I would never aim for their jewels. If someone entered my house with my harm in mind, I wouldn't let them live if I had the choice.

ctdonath
September 17, 2006, 05:27 PM
Overpenetration is a major concernThose who actually do real-world comparisons find that it isn't. Once a wall is hit, .223 loses velocity fast compared to other options.

As for "poking holes", that the military primarily uses 'em and SWAT is switching to them is indicative that .223 does more than "poke holes".

Spencer
September 27, 2006, 09:10 PM
You could sell the shotgun and get a .357 S&W magnum revolver.

TexasRifleman
September 27, 2006, 09:13 PM
IMHO, using an AR as a homedefense weapon is irresponsible unless you live alone in the middle of the woods.

No offense but your humble opinion could use some education.

erict
September 27, 2006, 11:44 PM
I personally use a Mossy 500 persuader with a flashlight.

I wouldn't hesitate using my AR with a flashlight either. I chose the shotgun because I have a 5 year old daughter and overpenetration is a concern.

Notice the word "flashlight" in both gun descriptions. If you use a light it takes alot of the aiming out of the equation.

I took a pic of each with the light on for you. Notice that the shotgun light is within inches of where the bead is aimed at. This would make it easy to fire from an awkward position. The AR flashlight is "dead on" to where the sights line up and it could also be fired awkwardly if needed.

I think these flashlights are almost as important as the guns themselves. Make sure and get pressure switches for easy on/off operation. I wouldn't want to be "quietly" walking through the house with a noticeable flashlight beaming through the place. :eek:

Shifty
September 28, 2006, 05:15 AM
its probably been comented on somewhere in this thread, but after reading a few pages i just had to add my own 2 cents.

1. shotguns still need to be aimed
2. most people on the intarweb seem to live in hollywoodland regarding shotgun damage to the human body and........
3. the amount of pattern spread you get off a cylinder bore HD gun inside a dwelling. unless you live in a damn castle/mansion, its a whole hell of alot smaller that most people make it seem
4. HD without some kind of light setup, be it on the weapon or in the dwelling is physically and legally dangerous.
5. the body armored invader vs shotgun scenario is a non issue. one hit at HD ranges will put them down for a follow up. unless you mistook the intruder for a pheasant, and selected your load to reflect such. also if you cant execute a headshot at these ranges....you should probably hit the range.
6. shotguns vs zombies are overkill. read the guide people :rolleyes:

JShirley
September 28, 2006, 07:24 AM
You know, I only made to mostway through the 2nd page, but let me address something.

I hear this utter malarky mantra all the time: There's nothing more devastating at close range than buckshot!

Baloney. I hunted with a gentleman my father met from church years ago. Derrell was waiting for trial. For a murder-suicide.

Derrell didn't remember what had happened, having been loaded on prescription drugs and booze. He always claimed that his wife had shot herself, and then he had shot himself after her death. In the face. With a 12-gauge at contact distance. Loaded with buckshot.

Derrell was missing a big chunk of his face, like someone had used a hot ice cream scoop to just lop off about tangerine-sized section of his face and jaw.

He was very much alive.

I stopped using buckshot because I like the ability to shoot things at range- and I lost faith in the ability of buck to stop even game at reasonable ranges. (It does excell on armadillo at 4 meters.)

I am not saying a shotgun, especially loaded with slugs, is useless. Far from it. I do fervently believe a good carbine is FAR superior for close-range use against threats who may be shooting back.

As someone else suggested- get another barrel for that shotgun. It'll make a fine hunting arm- I like using my ghost-ring Mossy and slugs for stalking deer through thick woods.

Oh, yeah- at almost contact distance, you look over your rear sight on the M4 or similar AR platform. You swing the weapon up until your front sight covers the target, and squeeze the trigger. Twice. 'Cause no weapon or bullet is magic, and we believe in Murphy's first law. And you have no practical need, and little use, for automatic fire to defend yourself with a rifle. We don't use it even in the military, unless shooting a squad automatic (which only fires the 5.56mm, but is twice as heavy, and is used from the prone or a mount whenever possible) or larger weapon.

'Nuther addendum- I tested various rounds against Level II body armor. I wouldn't have wanted to be wearing that vest, but even slugs didn't penetrate. .223 did.

John

weregunner
September 29, 2006, 12:56 AM
There are several ways to look at this. For those who like the shotgun and want it short within legal limits and can use it in small areas the double barrel backed up with a handgun can make sense. Since quick follow up shots can be made with the double compared to the other types of shotgun one can fire the 2 quick shots if needed and then transfer over to the sidearm. Carbines in rifle or pistol calibers can be used in tight courters more easily than most shotguns. Some jurisdictions ban handguns. So the carbine makes sense. Since one is liable for each shot fired one does not have to worry about as many stray projectiles with each pull of the trigger compared to shotguns. People may not be able to take the muzzle blast of the shotguns or rifle . Recoil for some could also be a detriment. Pistol cartridge carbines would then come into their own. For those who want the shotgun, it is your choice. For all who chose the weapon system that works best for them I will not criticise the choice. Common sense and research need to be done before one commits wholly to ones defense package. TV, movies, and video games are not real life. Have talked to a few people old and young who went with or are going to go with a choice of firearm on hearsay and what the game or movie showed them was "cool". Oh well. Darwin Award winners they will be. There was no plan what to do if the domicle was invaded rather than to blast away at the intruder.

JShirley
September 29, 2006, 10:37 AM
(and by "research"- let me put words in your mouth- he means "go out and shoot stuff".) Get a few gallon milk jugs, fill them with water, and place a phone book after the last jug. Try your magic super round of choice, and then try "the other thing", whatever that is.

Having actually done this, I can tell you, for instance, that some .223 will expand/fragment violently, and penetrate less than 9mm!

Soybomb
September 29, 2006, 04:53 PM
5. the body armored invader vs shotgun scenario is a non issue. one hit at HD ranges will put them down for a follow up. unless you mistook the intruder for a pheasant, and selected your load to reflect such. also if you cant execute a headshot at these ranges....you should probably hit the range.
You know I liked everything about your post except this. You point out some people's "hollywood" expectations of wounding but then go hollywood yourself with "the shotgun is so powerful they'll be knocked clean off their feet even wearing armor" kind of talk. Lets be honest, the person is going down if they decide to go down, the physics of the situation aren't going to make them do so though.

Matt G
September 29, 2006, 05:05 PM
Having actually done this, I can tell you, for instance, that some .223 will expand/fragment violently, and penetrate less than 9mm!
That's a fact.

...though the guy from The Box Of Truth found that .223/5.56 barely out-penetrates textbooks over 9mm: http://www.theboxotruth.com/docs/bot31.htm

Spencer
September 29, 2006, 05:12 PM
the body armored invader vs shotgun scenario is a non issue. one hit at HD ranges will put them down for a follow up. unless you mistook the intruder for a pheasant, and selected your load to reflect such. also if you cant execute a headshot at these ranges....you should probably hit the range.

Body armor can stop slugs. The target's chest would probably be shattered, but nonetheless. I would say the best bet on ammo for the self home defense shotgun is 00 Buck.

MrAcheson
September 29, 2006, 05:21 PM
6. shotguns vs zombies are overkill. read the guide peopleYup, everyone knows zombies require headshots which isn't a shotgun's forte. :D

As for AR vs. Shotgun against people, I have both. I'll probably use the AR for a couple reasons.

(1) I'm a firm believer in using what you regularly shoot, which is the AR-15 and handguns for me. If I shot clays or skeet or hunted regularly, I'd probably go the other way. But I don't so I won't.

(2) I don't happen to have buckshot in the house for whatever stupid reason, just varing sizes of bird shot and some slugs. Despite what people say, birdshot can only be counted on to make a nasty surface wound. It might scare the guy off, but it probably won't permanently incapacitate him or penetrate to any vital organs. Slugs will overpenetrate far worse than any AR. 55 grain 5.56 milsurp (which I have hundreds of rounds of) is a much better choice for stopping people permanently than my current stock of shotgun ammo.

(3) The AR might not be as reliable as my mossberg, but neither has ever malfunctioned on me. I don't expect malfs to be an issue unless I start storing the AR in my cat's litterbox. I think I can keep my guns clean in my own home. Honestly, because of (1) I have more trouble with the pump shotgun because everything I shoot regularly is semi-auto.

Shifty
September 29, 2006, 06:29 PM
in all likelyhood, a target wearing body armor will lose their footing following a close range fully absorbed shotgun blast because the armor acts as a kinetic focal point with almost no elasticity. in that kind of a situation, all that ft-lbs sillyness that people always quote for stopping power really does come into effect.

having said that, i didnt really mean knock down, rather stop whatever immediate action they were undertaking, thereby buying a few precious seconds for you to reevaluate the threat. knock some sense into them maybe.

having seen lightweight, slow moving less-than lethal impacts in action and the resulting trauma they cause, i am pretty sure that a full power load when denied penetration will produce at least equivalent results.

now i've seen hundreds of shotgun wounds, and i've shot thousands of rounds through my HD gun at the range, but i will admit that i have not actually shot, nor had any first hand accounts from people that have shot (with a shotgun) an individual in body armor, so i'm going off of physics here.

but from speaking to my LEO buddies , some of which have taken handgun rounds to the vest, it can stagger your footing pretty severely if you arent properly balanced. and then of course the "whole holy **** i've been shot" factor

Fred Fuller
September 30, 2006, 09:36 AM
"Derrell was missing a big chunk of his face, like someone had used a hot ice cream scoop to just lop off about tangerine-sized section of his face and jaw."
========================================================

John,

Not to appear argumentative, but...

Human critters are three dimensional, and vital areas are not everywhere in the corpus. It is necessary to know some basic anatomy in order to direct projectiles of any size/type/origin to vital areas. Peripheral hits are peripheral hits no matter what small arms projectile inflicts them. Would the results in Derrell's case have been different with any other projectile, given the trajectory at which said projectile was fired?

It's no secret that I favor shotguns and 00 buckshot for close range defensive use, because I have confidence in its ability to stop an assailant. I have seen the results of shotguns fired at humans at close range, and understand its limitations- and there are limitations, as with anything else. A miss with any small arm is still a miss, a peripheral hit is a peripheral hit. I have posted a forensics report from Australia on a couple of self- defense related threads here on THR as an object lesson in the efficacy of peripheral hits with shotguns- take a look at http://www.mja.com.au/public/issues/173_11_041200/herdson/herdson.html . Shotguns are not magic wands, any more than any other personal weapon- you have to hit vital areas to produce stops.

Shotguns aren't necessarily the best choice for every person and every situation, and I am not about to say they are. But they are my choice and I stand by it.

Regards,

lpl/nc

JShirley
September 30, 2006, 10:07 AM
Hm. Interesting (if gruesome) link.

Lee, I do believe almost any 12 gauge slug would have had the penetration to blow through the face and take out CNS.

Now, I have no doubt that you- as many here probably- can fill your defensive needs with a shotgun. Hell, I think I can fulfill my likely defensive needs with a shotgun. I just think I can do even better with a carbine (and interestingly enough, I see the most advantage at what most people believe is the defensive shotgun's forte, very close-range use against multiple threats), except in certain, specialized situations, as I mentioned earlier.

Now, if someone has no carbine, and already owns a decent shotgun, then I suggest they test various loads from it into media, instead of accepting "common knowledge", know where their load of choice groups or patterns, practice and be happy. :)
---
some of those really short(and cool), shotgun shells

If you're referencing Aguila minishells, my experience has been that they will malfunction (sometimes to the point of an actual jam- in other words, requiring tools to clear) when cycled through most shotguns. Even Aguila (http://www.aguilaammo.com/minishells_shotgun_mods.htm) has this to say: We would like to state once more that minishells will not cycle flawlessly in regular pump action shotguns, no matter how well some customers are able to cycle them.
John

Soybomb
September 30, 2006, 03:03 PM
in all likelyhood, a target wearing body armor will lose their footing following a close range fully absorbed shotgun blast because the armor acts as a kinetic focal point with almost no elasticity. in that kind of a situation, all that ft-lbs sillyness that people always quote for stopping power really does come into effect.
kinetic focal point? What does that even mean? ;) Seriously if anything body armor helps spread an impact over a wider area. That is the very basic way it functions to prevent penetration by a bullet. Thats why it lessens the damage from blunt force trauma (say making you safer if you hit the steering column in a car accident) as well. I just don't see the "losing footing" thing. If there isn't enough energy to knock the shooter down, there isn't energy to knock the receipient down. I can't think of the number of hunters I know who have put a slug through a deer and had the deer keep running for quite a distance even with decent shot placement. Your theory would suggest that the deer should topple over backwards like a cardboard cutout, especially since its getting a big hole put in it, not just an impact.

10-Ring
September 30, 2006, 03:20 PM
I've got a handgun in night stand & my Defender 12' away in the safe. IMO, you can't beat a shotgun for HD

usmccpl
September 30, 2006, 04:27 PM
From a military stand point I would have to say the 12 gauge. When engaging the enemy using a shotgun with slugs or buckshot you shoot once then shoot again if needed.With an M16A2 you shoot two or three rounds then asess the situation and see if you need to shoot more.So that is why I say that.




one shot one kill

Shifty
September 30, 2006, 08:02 PM
we need to test this. lets get some hams or other large slabs of meat, some vests, lots of ammo and go shooting. afterwards big BBQ and beer.

even if we still cant agree, we will have some good eatin.

but seriously, i forget the exact velocity, but these also "spread the impact over a larger area" http://www.securityandsafetysupply.com/product-firearms/Gauge1.html

i suck at the intarweb

JShirley
October 1, 2006, 02:26 PM
From a military stand point I would have to say the 12 gauge. When engaging the enemy using a shotgun with slugs or buckshot you shoot once then shoot again if needed.With an M16A2 you shoot two or three rounds then asess the situation and see if you need to shoot more.So that is why I say that.


You're misunderstanding. The ONLY reason you might just fire one round as SOP from a shotgun, instead of the controlled pair we're taught to fire from a carbine, is limited ammunition capacity and increased recovery time, NOT increased effectiveness. Good private school courses often teach a "hammer" of two rounds from shotgun to threat.

John

Deer Hunter
October 1, 2006, 04:12 PM
I'm sure this has been stated before, but is cost a factor? The cheapest AR-15s are built guns and go for around $550. The cheapest 12 gauge shotgun I've seen is a mossburg 500 for $145. No matter how much you try to rationalize it, many people who are thinking about buying a firearm for home defense tend to first make their choices based on how much each firearm costs.

Blacklabman
October 1, 2006, 04:29 PM
Large house (6 bedrooms) in urban/suburban area.


I live in much the same. But in a very rural setting.
I prefer a M4 with Black Hills 68gr HP's, backed by a P220.
The 12ga is left for the geese.

s&w 24
November 5, 2006, 07:01 AM
223 loaded properly penitrates less than pistol or shotgun ammo according to both FBI tests and US border patrol tests. If over penitration is the issue fedral 40 gr hp ammo is the cure.

Now that I live in an apartment I may suck it up and get a itty bitty 223. All the testing I have seen has said that you can put more hits on target quicker with a 223 VS 12 ga and bucksot is not comparible to 223 expanding ammo. Buckshot is a round ball of lead, a 223 vermin bullet turns into multiple projectiles on fluid contact.

GRIZ22
November 5, 2006, 07:43 AM
I'd say shotgun loaded with #2 or BB to minimize penetration inside. You may want to have the first 2 rounds #2 or BB followed by #4 Buck. At the ranges you'd be shooting just about any size shot would do the job. The spread of shot with no choke is about an inch a yard so inside the house you still have to aim. I wouldn't be concerned with the typical criminal wearing body and if need be I'd follow up with a second shot to an unarmored part of the body.

Rural or urban I would go with the shotgun as range would not be an issue. If the guy is running away you'd better be ready to explain why you shot him 100 yards from your house.

Nickodemus
November 5, 2006, 11:04 AM
Without a doubt a shotgun at close range has more energy then the .223 from an AR. If I had to defend myself against 1 or 2 intruders I would use the shotgun with 00 Buck and slugs if necessary. If I was defending myself against multiple intruders then I would go with the AR since that would be better suited for a sustained gun fight.

Both offer the home defense advantage in that if you use the right ammo they will not overpenetrate and kill your neighboors, hopefully.

Personally, for home defense I decided to train with a good full size pistol that is always close, and if it really hit the fan to put me in a more offensive stance, I could grab one of two battle rifles shooting .30 ammo.

I might start a fight saying this, but an AK has more close range stopping power then an AR, do to the size of the projectile. This turns in favor of the AR when your target is couple hundred yards away though, because then the higher velocity of the AR projectile compensates.

The Real Hawkeye
November 5, 2006, 11:43 AM
Which is superior for home defense? If the AR can do the shotgun's job, I'll just sell it and use that money towards my next purchase - a Colt 1911I guess you should sell the shotgun, then. My view is that since bad guys can purchase soft body armor like anyone else, the shotgun is not the best bet for home defense. I use either an AK 47 with steel core 7.62 or an M4 with steel core 5.56. Both are always loaded and within reach. I also have a .45 with me at all times, but if the rifle is within reach, that's my pick for home defense. Just be careful about shot placement. Those rounds can penetrate a couple of houses if you miss the COM. If that's an over riding concern of yours, go with the shotgun. There is specialty shotgun ammo that will penetrate a vest easy, if that's the way you want to go. It is essentially a normal shotgun round, but instead of lead balls it contains steel nails facing forward. The payload is surrounded by plastic to protect the bore. The plastic seperates on exit from the barrel.

The Real Hawkeye
November 5, 2006, 11:57 AM
Assualt rifle rounds by definition will likely over-penetrate a human target.I guess the military should switch to shotguns with No. 4 shot then. Most modern day military operations don't happen in a vast open plane, but house to house, amongst civilians, mothers and children.

The Real Hawkeye
November 5, 2006, 12:17 PM
An AR-15 carbine is much shorter than a non-NFA shotgunNot necessarily.

Shifty
November 5, 2006, 01:01 PM
who doesnt have a shotgun?? i mean seriously, thats almost un-american.

they are so cheap, so useful, and so much fun that it just doesnt make sense not to own one. or two, or ten.

ec-10
November 5, 2006, 01:02 PM
Some empirical data on what a level IIIA vest will stop can be found here (http://www.theboxotruth.com/docs/bot16.htm). Due to the fact that I live in an apartment and have at a minimum eight souls separated from myself by four sheets of drywall my preferred defense weapon is the shotgun. Although during my waking hours I would go to my glock 17 for more accurate shot placement.

Thankfully to this date I have only had to go to the ready once in the apartment. I had come into the living room to investigate a disturbance in the courtyard in back at about 01:30. I heard the door to the main hallway open with force and heard what sounded like someone dry-firing a revolver in the hall. :scrutiny: I took up a defensive position (such as it was) and trained the G17 on my front door. I heard the individual leave. I waited at the ready for a few minutes and went back to bed. I didn't get much sleep that night.

Before anyone asks, I did not call the police. The last time I called them (neighbor was bouncing his GF off the walls) they came out and found no evidence of a disturbance (neighbor's GF had left, he bluffed the police). They did not seem happy with me as though I was lying. I have conceded that I will not call them again unless there is something major happening. :uhoh:

Bigfoot
November 5, 2006, 03:04 PM
I might start a fight saying this, but an AK has more close range stopping power then an AR, do to the size of the projectile. This turns in favor of the AR when your target is couple hundred yards away though, because then the higher velocity of the AR projectile compensates.

No fight here, especially since it's off topic, but what gives a cartridge stopping power is how much damage the bullet does to the body not the bullets diameter. The fragmenting 5.56 wins at close range. A center of mass double tap with a laser sighted 5.56 will shut down any BG real fast.

Individual shotgun pellets cause almost as much damage as a handgun bullet but the body absorbing so many at the same time shocks it and tends to shut it down. Plus it increases the chance of hitting something vital. And yes because the close range pattern is small you have to aim it also.

Pick whatever you're more comfortable shooting well in stressfull situations. I prefer the carbine because meth freak home invaders like guns too and I want a full high cap mag in my gun. But the shottie sits right next to it, loaded with #1.

dispatch55126
November 5, 2006, 03:40 PM
Don't know if it was ever mentioned as I'm not going to read through 7 pages, but having two babies in the house I'm also concerned about bachground. A 12 guage would probably go through less sheetrock than a 5.56 FMJ. In either case I would think frangibles would be the way to go.

crunker
November 5, 2006, 08:04 PM
.223 fired in a house, unsuppressed, may well make you lose your hearing. 12ga. is a bit better from what I understand.

Also, .223 rounds are more prone to overpenetrating your target, and in the case of home defense the backstop might be you 6 year old sleeping in his bedroom.

Dmack_901
November 5, 2006, 08:08 PM
.223 fired in a house, unsuppressed, may well make you lose your hearing. 12ga. is a bit better from what I understand.I know this is supported by those here to have had AD/NDs in the house. However I heard adrelinine heavily dampens hearing ability, and I wonder if an ar-15 would still be deafening under a real-life situation.

SpookyPistolero
November 5, 2006, 08:25 PM
Just a small point, but it's not that your nerve endings are shutting down in your ears when you're in that 'fight or flight' situation. It's only your mind's focus moving to different things. Your hearing is still able to be harmed by the percussion waves of a gunshot, that's a physical property. It's just that your mind isn't 'hearing' that much because it's not giving as much energy to the process.

Selecting a longarm as an indoor defensive weapon seems like a good excuse to get a suppressor.

clange
November 5, 2006, 08:43 PM
Most modern day military operations don't happen in a vast open plane, but house to house, amongst civilians, mothers and children.
And if a round goes into a house and kills some kid..oh well, tough ****. If it happens to me in the US my life is ruined.

I agree with you, because .223 does not penetrate more than buckshot or 9mm, but the military example is pretty bad.

Chilean
November 6, 2006, 08:01 AM
12 gauge shotgun...we can't have ARs here in Chile :neener:

High Planes Drifter
November 6, 2006, 12:39 PM
quote:

Its dark and your heart is pounding, do you want to have to worry about "aiming" your ar, or just pointing your shotgun.
---------------------------------

How big is you're house? At 12 to 15 feet (average room size) Im pretty sure you're going to have to aim whatever it is you're holding. 00 isnt going to spread much, if at all, in 15' whether its out of a full choke or modified brl. Also, its easier to manipulate an AR carbine than a shottie when cornering.

In any case, there is no right or wrong answer here. The knight is more important than the sword with which he fights . Use what you're comfortable with, and train.

MrAcheson
November 7, 2006, 09:30 AM
And if a round goes into a house and kills some kid..oh well, tough ****. If it happens to me in the US my life is ruined.

I agree with you, because .223 does not penetrate more than buckshot or 9mm, but the military example is pretty bad.Have you studied much MOUT operations? It isn't "oh well" if the guy in the next room that gets shot is in your unit, which is a likely scenario in house clearing.

JShirley
November 7, 2006, 10:38 AM
Here (http://www.theboxotruth.com/docs/bot14.htm) is a test of shots into drywall. Everything- pistol, rifle, shotgun rounds- everything penetrated all 4 drywalls, except for #8 birdshot, which had such shallow penetration, it was deemed useless for SD.

The thing is, the rifle rounds, even when they broke apart, didn't have much spread.

It would really be a shame if someone used a shotgun with the intent to reduce liability, and increased potential harm to innocents in the vicinity, because- look at the pictures- if you miss, the buckshot will tend to go everywhere, if it doesn't hit something hard enough to stop it.

John

Manedwolf
November 7, 2006, 11:29 AM
Possibly mentioned before, but also keep in mind that whatever weapon you shoot an intruder with will be held up in civil court by their deadbeat family's lawyer.

If it's an iconic "eeeevil black rifle", you'll be taken to the cleaners. After all it must have been UNNECESSARY to kill the poor "he was a Good Boy" if you were able to use an "Assault Weapon", right? :barf:

clange
November 7, 2006, 12:12 PM
Have you studied much MOUT operations? It isn't "oh well" if the guy in the next room that gets shot is in your unit, which is a likely scenario in house clearing.
He said urban setting 'amongst civilians, mothers, children', which is what I commented on.

.45 AUTO
November 9, 2006, 10:23 AM
The Shotgun was created as an effective, close range, versatile firearm. the inside of a house is close range, unless you have hallways in your home the length of a Football Field, I would certainly use the shotgun. Bigger bore, reliability, simplicity, a lot of margin for error, certain 100% knockdown power. For the AR-15 to do what a 12 Gauge shotgun can do at close range it would take about 1/3 of that clip to equal in firepower.

Grayrider
November 9, 2006, 11:01 AM
JShirley beat me to what I was going to point out on penetration. I also find it disturbing that many posters plan to point and shoot at the intruder without aiming. I NEVER shoot at anything without aiming. In MY house, with MY wife, and MY kids around I won't turn loose ANY round of ANY caliber without being absolutely sure what I am aiming at.

I do not use a shotgun for home defense as I cannot be certain where all of the projectiles will end up, and they certainly will penetrate sheet rock. Anyone who says the noise level is much different between the two guns is ignoring the fact that both are way too loud to be fired without hearing protection inside and hope to hear anything for a while afterwards. If you have fired a weapon indoors without hearing protection you know this.

Personally I use a handgun inside as it goes around corners better and can be kept close to me as I work around doorways, etc. I use a 45 caliber Glock 21. I have kept an AR available before for various reasons in preference to a shotgun as it is shorter with the stock partially collapsed, and I can aim each shot. However, I do not routinely. Lately I have been considering setting up my PS90 for this purpose as it is even handier in close spaces. I like the idea of a carbine over a handgun because I can aim it more precisely in a hurry. Again, I have family out there in the dark and I need to know exactly where my shots will go. It is also possible the Mrs. might need to use it, and she sure cannot effectively use a shotgun. In fact I have not met many men who can without quite a bit of training.

John

JShirley
November 9, 2006, 11:14 AM
The Shotgun was created as an effective, close range, versatile firearm

Rubbish. The shotgun- fowling piece or trade gun, originally- was an inexpensive firearm that could be used with a solid slug or shot. It was more affordable and versatile than rifled pieces. The main positive attribute of the shotgun for defense today is its low cost.

If the shotgun was as good as you'd like to believe, 1/3 of our infantry soldiers would be armed with them. Instead, squad leaders in SOME units are armed with them, and they're most often ONLY used for special circumstances, like breaching doors.

As respectfully as I can say, this:certain 100% knockdown power just means that you're inexperienced. There is NO shoulder-fired traditional firearm that has "certain 100% knockdown power".

A Buckhammer 1 1/4 oz slug traveling 1550 fps has 2935 ft-lbs of energy.
A 62-grain HPM at 3025 fps has 1260 ft-lbs of energy.

I think you meant to say "what a single round of 12 GA can do"; otherwise, you're only talking about a few rounds difference. And, of course, you're wrong, partially because of the different wounding mechanisms. Round balls are just not as effective as pointed rounds, especially if the pointed rounds expand and/or fragment. Against a human foe, I'd take a carbine with expanding rounds over a 12 GA ANY day.

John

Still 2 Many Choices!?
November 9, 2006, 03:17 PM
I have a relative that was shot in the hand and face as a young adult, while he and some friends were playing with a loaded shotgun. He grabbed the barrel with one hand, while covering one side of his face with the other. Eye patch and some massive trauma to the arm but he is alive and well today. I don't want to think about what a .223 or 5.56X45 would have done:uhoh: ! I don't know what the load was exactly, but it was not birdshot, or slug and less than a meter and a half from his face... Draw your own conclusions.

Still 2 Many Chocies!?

nemoaz
December 15, 2006, 08:07 PM
The point vs. aiming thing has already been addressed. But I have to say, if you are not aware of how narrow the pattern is at typical household distances, you need to pattern your shotgun. You MUST AIM a shotgun (or be very very good at pointing) at househould distances because the pattern will only be a inch to a few inches. The tiny pattern is not really an advantage over a rifle.

>>Firing an AR or any high powered rifle inside your house in a urban/suburban area is just plain stupid. I'd go for a the shotgun loaded alternating 00 buck and slugs. If I had to choose a rifle it'd probably be something pistol caliber that won't go through walls and straight into your neighbors while they're sleeping.

Only if they are using FMJ in the AR. The "boxotruth" link concerns m193 ball ammo. Not HP. I assume no one--except those that are required by Uncle Sam-- would do that. 223 hollowpoints are among the best rounds in avoiding overpenetration. That's why most of the tactical units have abandoned pistol caliber smg's The overpenetration of pistol caliber bullets are exascerbated by the big and slow bullets that seem to be in vogue.

>>They're no bigger or bulkier than an AR. These are lightweight and compact and can also deliver fast, precise shots. Magazine capacity can be as many as 8-rounds. That's Mossberg 590 length-territory, without the hassle of round-by-round reloads, as well as with the added advantage of having quick, magazine-fed capability.

A CAR is handier than a short barrelled shotgun (18", folding or pistol grip) and an AR is handier than a 20" shotgun. The weight difference (shotgun far heavier) does affect the speed at which you can properly present the weapon to the target. Yes, some shotties have 9 round mags, but most have 6. All AR types weapons can hold 30 and have 30 as quickly as one put one more round in a shottie.

>>Also, even someone getting hit with 12 gauge low recoil buckshot while wearing Level IIIA armor is going to feel it regardless.

I respectfully disagree and have heard of people without armor who didn't even know they had been shot for many minutes.

>>You're already preparing for the unexpected and unlikely. Its unlikely someone breaking into your home will have armor, but its unlikely someone will break into your home. Where do you draw the line?

I have witnessed quite a few mis-strokes during "panic firing" shotgun qualifications. (Basically, empty the shotgun into the silhouette, then hot chamber, then load the tube until a whistle blows, then empty the shotgun again and repeat.) This from guys who shoot fairly often and qualify many times a year. You better practice a little in order to know how temperatmental a pump can sometimes be. We always say, "Try to break it."

>>One shot will blanket an entire door or window across the street and is the practical equivalent of an entire clip from a submachinegun.

One shot from a shotgun is more devastating than a single shot from a smg, but it isn't equivalent to short burst from a smg or AR. I've seen both a few times. Your forgetting how small and slow those little .24-.33 pellets are. The shotgun pellets don't expand at all. It's more like multiple shots from a .22.

>>IMHO, using an AR as a homedefense weapon is irresponsible unless you live alone in the middle of the woods. Overpenetration is a major concern, as well as the fact that at close range (not point-blank) an AR will poke holes in a BG who may still be able to get to you before he bleeds to death.

ONLY IF YOU ARE STUCK WITH FMJ. A .223 hp wound is devastating.

>>The target's chest would probably be shattered, but nonetheless.

False. Basic physics, the amount of energy of the slug is exactly the same as the amount that's expended into your hand or shoulder when you fire the weapon. For every action there is an equal reaction. Would placing a shotgun on your sternum and pulling the trigger shattter your chest? Of course not. A bad guy struck in a vest with a shotgun pattern won't have a crushed chest either.

>>Lee, I do believe almost any 12 gauge slug would have had the penetration to blow through the face and take out CNS.

I too have seen two different people who swallowed the barrell of a 12g shotgun and did nothing more than blow their face, nose and eyes off. Not exactly "nothing" and perhaps the bad guy would have been incapacitated, but we don't stick our barrels in the mouth of the bad guy. The pellets did not penetrate the skull or penetrate enough to cause fatal injuries (spinal cord, jugular oe carotid, etc). If your shot isn't head on, you may not incapacitate a bad guy with buckshot to the head.

The old guys or gun mag commandos like their 12g's and .45 and believe that any one shot = instant knockdown and certain death but it is simply a fairy tale spread by people who have never really been there.

Some one made the point about the sound of the pump action. Yes, people respond to racking a shotgun round, but they respond to racking an AR also.

THAT BEING SAID, my house gun is a 12g because I don't have an AR at home. Even if I did, I might leave it with the wife and keep the 12g. At work, I always choose the AR over the shotgun, but either is way better than a handgun.

Harold Mayo
December 15, 2006, 08:26 PM
AR, hands down.

TooTaxed
December 15, 2006, 08:35 PM
The penetration test link provided in Post#170 (different weapons tested on four 10' spaced pieces of drywall) was quite interesting...but was rather incomplete on shotgun. Only 00 buck and #8 shot were tested...the buck went through all four walls, while the #8 birdshot didn't penetrate one. Two or three sizes in between should have also been tested. Somewhat similar tests by my Special Foces unit resulted in our choice of shotguns with #1 buck as first choice for house-to-house fighting.

marty1
December 15, 2006, 08:49 PM
I keep an 870 with 00 buck-once the guy hears me chamber a round I'm sure he's not staying around for the big blast.

RockyMtnTactical
December 15, 2006, 08:57 PM
There's a good reason to have both IMO.

benEzra
June 21, 2007, 02:57 PM
Firing an AR or any high powered rifle inside your house in a urban/suburban area is just plain stupid. I'd go for a the shotgun loaded alternating 00 buck and slugs.
A .729 caliber shotgun slug vastly out-penetrates any .223 loading.

Extreme case--here's a piece of "bulletproof" polycast acrylic, from the Box o'Truth:

http://www.theboxotruth.com/docs/bot6.htm


Stopped a .223 FMJ at close range:
http://www.theboxotruth.com/images/6-9.jpg


Stopped a .308 FMJ at close range:
http://www.theboxotruth.com/images/6-11.jpg


Couldn't stop a 12-gauge slug:
http://www.theboxotruth.com/images/6-13.jpg



See also:

Roberts, GK: "Law Enforcement General Purpose Shoulder Fired Weapons -- The Wounding Effects of 5.56mm/.223 Carbines Compared With 12 Ga. Shotguns and Pistol Caliber Weapons using 10% Ordnance Gelatin as a Tissue Simulant." Police Marksman, July/August 1998.

Roberts did a bit of penetration testing there as well.

Again, .223 with JHP's penetrates no more than pistol caliber JHP's. Some from the Fackler school of thought may criticize .223 JHP's as offering insufficient gelatin penetration (often no more than 10", less for the lightest loads), but overpenetration of building materials isn't a valid criticism of them.

Boats
June 21, 2007, 06:08 PM
I'm in the shotgun camp. I don't care which one is longer, handier, quieter, or has more capacity.

Shooting ARs bores me to death. Pop, pop, pop, etcetera. They can't hold my interest.

Shotguns are way more fun for me to practice with. Whether shouldering up to fire slugs, swinging the barrel for some clays, or just blasting 8 rounds of reduced recoil buck into a target as fast as I can manage it, the shotties are just more fun for me to practice with and they make me go to the range, which in turn, means the BG are in bigger trouble for it at my house should they come calling.

Shoot what you like. There is no "better" in this argument, unless it is which one is better suited to one's prejudices. I like shooting shotguns so that is what I choose, and I'd still choose them if quality ARs were >$500.00 brand new.

ifuseekpeaceprepare4war
January 11, 2008, 02:47 PM
I use black hills soft piont so as not to harm the neigbors, and cuz my son's in the house but yeah shotty are nice. the thing is i went through Basic and we learned how to bash peoples brians out if you get low on ammo and them4 is a nast martil arts weapon too don't discount that.

Prophet19
March 13, 2008, 11:26 PM
Okay, new here, so maybe this was covered.

There are good points to both, most notably: The shotgun has ease of use and multiple contact ammunition on its side; the AR has penetration and higher capacity. (As stated before: it is important to train.)

It basically comes down to a person's own choice, the logistics of the house, and the location of the house.

There are variuous accessories that can be added to either weapon, and for home defense, I would suggest using both a lasersight and a tactical light.

Now, for the original poster, I would suggest you run drills through not only your home, but the surrounding property using both weapons. Which one is more feasible for your defensive uses? (I would look most closly at the space of your home, what obstacles exist, and which would allow you to lay down the most defensive fire in the safest way.)

On a side note, at our home we use both a long barrelled 12G Mossberg pump and a Chinese SKS carbine. (The shotgun is for clearing the house, and the SKS is to provide cover for the 'scout.')

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