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Real Stories of the Serbu Super Shorty

Discussion in 'Shotguns' started by .455_Hunter, Sep 1, 2021.

  1. .455_Hunter

    .455_Hunter Member

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    Does anybody have any accounts, reports, or anecdotes that indicate a successful or unsuccessful actual deployment for a Serbu Super Shorty?

    Something you heard at a training session about use by a VIP protection team in Mexico City- who knows?

    Just looking for any meat...
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2021
  2. 12Bravo20

    12Bravo20 Member

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    In for information.

    I saw the US Marshals and military security detachments all use the "Shockwave" type weapons instead of the Serbu Shorty. The US Marshal/military versions of the "Shockwave" have shorter barrels and are under 26" OAL. I carried one but mine was used mostly for breeching operations.
     
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  3. SOAB

    SOAB Member

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    About 8 years ago there was an old teacher that really went to town on some cowboys and rogue 2 liters.

    I feel like they are more fun than practical on the civilian side of things.

    Great for when you lock yourself out of the house and you needed a reason to change your front door design anyways.
     
  4. a_canadian

    a_canadian Member

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    I'm puzzled by comments which largely dismiss the short shotgun.

    - Great little bear/cougar defense gun for hiking. Mine is 19" OAL so it fits into any reasonable day pack.
    - 3 x 1oz low recoil slugs is probably being optimistic for what I'd be able to fire at a charging bear anyway, so capacity doesn't concern me. If the first 2 haven't stopped the bear, chances are I'm on the ground, under the bear, and won't be racking the action anyway. Rare circumstances might mean more become relevant, and for such occasions it's not difficult to keep a couple more in a pocket.
    - For HD a few low recoil wax slugs using #8 birdshot maximizes initial penetration, which instantly dissipates (I've tested in a few media) resulting in little concern about penetration of walls after initial impact. My neighbours can feel a bit safer for that, compared to my 9mm which can go through several walls before settling down.
    - For navigating narrow spaces and stairways and reacting quickly to someone surprising me from behind, in the case of a home invasion, it seems a shorty and a pistol rank almost equal in agility.

    The biggest drawback I can see is noise. So I'll go to my suppressed carbine first. But if one leaves out the deafness problem I don't really see a downside to having what amounts to a potent 'blunderbuss' type weapon in hand as a problem solver. And if one keeps a pair of earmuffs handy beside the shorty that problem largely goes away.
     
    Gordon likes this.
  5. DustyGmt

    DustyGmt Member

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    Forgive me, I tried to look this up on my own so I wouldn't have to ask but what are these "wax slugs" in conjunction with the use of #8 shot for HD?
     
  6. a_canadian

    a_canadian Member

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    I'm using Remington 'Gun Club' 2-3/4" birdshot for the purpose, and it has tested out well in a couple of media. I use a small gouge to cut through the front face of the crimp inside the lip, to the shot, enabling lifting out the little donut of plastic and pouring out the shot. I then melt 2 grams of beeswax with the shot in a small tin and pour it back into the opened shell, using a popsicle stick to feed the shot in at the same rate as I pour the wax for even distribution. Don't want the wax hardening before getting all the shot into the cup. Takes a bit of time, but for the small numbers I'd want for HD that doesn't worry me.

    I tried a Federal #8 shot but found the plastic a bit soft, tending to distort slightly. Don't want any risk of feeding issues for an HD round.

    Look on Youtube. Lots of guys doing the same with various approaches, including a couple who market cutting tools to remove the plastic, for those who don't want to bother doing it with a sharp tool directly. A block with a little cutter embedded at the bottom of a hole makes the process more 'automatic' though you still have to turn the shell by hand. People use paraffin or other wax. Doesn't matter. I happen to like beeswax as it's stickier, less likely to fly apart on firing. Some seem to feel that pouring the shot in first and following it with wax is okay, but I think you end up freezing the wax before it gets to the back of the shot cup, making more of a hybrid projectile with loose shot and a partial slug. Some like to throw all the wax and all the shot from a batch of shells together then spoon them in, metering shot by eye. But this would make for inconsistent weights. I want exactly the same weight of projectile every time, so I use just the right amount of wax with no excess and all the shot from each shell before moving to the next.

    In my testing these rounds perform like a 1oz slug until they penetrate about 2 or 3 inches inside a suitable target. Rotted stumps seem a good test medium. Neat slug-sized hole for a couple of inches, then as the heat melts/shatters all the wax, the slug comes apart and makes a much larger exit hole, typically 8" diameter after 8" of thoroughly rotted spruce stump. Foliage behind the target shows almost no sign of shot holes. The energy is basically gone inside the target. What does this mean for HD? Hard hit on the target. Minimal risk of getting through a wall after hitting the intended target. And a clean miss, the wax slug then hitting a wall, is likely to break up and deliver considerably less impact energy to whatever/whoever is behind that wall. With family and neighbours around and the potential for rapidly changing target positions with little opportunity to choose my backstop, that's very important. Buckshot will go right through a whole house and into the next house in many tests I've seen online. A wax slug can't do that, making it ideal for HD where you want all the force dumped into the intended target with minimal over-penetration.
     
    Gordon likes this.
  7. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Member

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    I have read of the wax slug but not seen an account of man or beast being shot with one.
    There are many folk tales of the effectiveness of the Cut Shell, too, but these days it is just a novelty trick.

    I 'spect either would work better than the stack of dimes as seen on film in News of the World.
     
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  8. twofewscrews

    twofewscrews Member

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    IMO wax slugs are a good way to ruin a firearm or yourself. Sure, a round or two, maybe even three through a cold barrel should be ok. A wax slug or multiple wax slugs being fired through a hot barrel sounds like it would create a barrel obstruction/catastrophic failure.
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2021
  9. a_canadian

    a_canadian Member

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    a) With 3 in the tube of my 9.5" barrel'd shorty I don't anticipate heating things up too much.
    b) If a home defense situation went beyond those 3 wax slugs, I'd be going for the suppressed 9mm PCC with 33 rounds of 147gr JHP in the magazine, rather than scrambling for more 12ga shells of whatever kind.
    c) I've seen at least one demo of a whole bunch of wax slugs being fired in a row, specifically done on video by somebody on Youtube (can't recall who) to demonstrate that they don't do anything negative to the gun in rapid fire.

    I find it a bit difficult to fathom how catastrophic failure could be even a remote risk, considering that any wax which happened to get wiped onto the heated barrel would be in liquid form and very small quanity, easily wiped away by the next shot. There may be some possibility of building up a tiny amount of wax with the tightest threaded choke, but who puts a choke on a shorty barrel? I remember in the demo mentioned above that the guy showed a view down the bore after firing off a bunch of wax-filled birdshot rounds and it looked absolutely clean. Wish I could find that video again... sorry, my Youtube skills seem to be lacking.
     
  10. JCooperfan1911

    JCooperfan1911 Member

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    Two shells is just not enough and since these designs aren’t drop safe, it is risky to store them loaded.
     
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  11. a_canadian

    a_canadian Member

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    I'm guessing this wasn't addressed towards me? I said 3 in the tube. 2 is not enough, 3 seems to me to be barely enough, but sufficient to probably get me to the rest of my guns in an HD situation - 2 initial shots and a third to keep chambered as I navigate to the carbine or a full-size shotgun. For bears/cougars a few shells in a pocket extend the potential, though from what I've heard of bear attacks it's unlikely I'd be doing much reloading if the first 3 slugs (always loaded with 1oz lead for hiking) failed to deal with the threat. More likely wouldn't have time to shoot more than twice. Bears are fast. And no, I certainly don't keep my HD shorty with one in the chamber and safety on. Far too dangerous, and not just for drop safety reasons.
     
  12. twofewscrews

    twofewscrews Member

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    My terminology was incorrect but I believe my point still stands. Your right insofar as the melted wax wouldn't create a traditional obstruction inside the barrel, however, if the wax slug gets heated and the shotgun is pointed down the wax slug can slide out of the shell and slide down the barrel/slide far enough out of the shell to create what TAOFLEDERMOUS refers to as a "short start."



    That being said, if you make em right and aren't shooting them in hot weather/out of a hot shotgun you should be fine. I still wouldn't rely on them or risk injury using them but to each his own.
     
  13. a_canadian

    a_canadian Member

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    I see. Right, I'd forgotten taofledermous' video, thanks for reminding me.

    For what it's worth, the hottest weather I've had the shorty exposed to was about 46 degrees celsius, or about 115 degrees Farenheit. That was a record where I live. My wax slugs showed no trace of melting in that temperature, so I don't think storage out of direct sunlight in this region will become a concern unless there's a dramatic temperature rise due to climate change. ;-)

    As for firing in an HD situation, again being very specific to my setup and my concept of what an HD shooting is likely to involve, I doubt I'd be firing a second or third shot, but if I did they would likely be in fairly rapid succession. Chamber heat is unlikely to be significant enough within those three shots to become a safety concern, in terms of a partially melted wax slug slipping forward out of the shell and causing an explosion via short start. It's certainly a scary prospect should that happen.

    I do carry the shorty in my day pack muzzle-down for hikes, but I don't load it with wax slugs for that, so even if my pack got very heated by sunlight there's no concern.

    Like so many firearms practice related questions this one can be complex. If I were favouring my old Wingmaster for HD, with 5 in the tube + 1 in the extension, mounted in a Magpul stock and forend, I would not put in more than the first two or maybe 3 shells as wax slugs, following those with 00 buckshot and maybe a single slug at the end of the line. Firstly because after 3 shots if wax slugs were used up I'd probably want to go with buck for sheer dramatic effect, and second for the melting slug risk as the barrel would be plenty warm after 3 shots in quick succession.

    This stuff is rather personal. For many, it seems 9mm is just weak as a defensive round. I'm puzzled by this, but then again I tend to hit exactly what I aim at. Perhaps if I were a spray and pray type shooter I'd want a Taurus in .410"? No idea, and certainly not pretending to be in a position to offer advice on such decisions, just saying how I've arrived at my own conclusions.
     
  14. DustyGmt

    DustyGmt Member

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    I don't know why but I just don't have alot of confidence in what he (taofledermous) has to say about shotguns and projectiles in terms of what is appropriate and safe for use. For one, he called a fixed choke a "kind of a built in choke" and he wasn't able to identify that the 28" Mossberg bbl on his buddy's shotgun definitely had a "built in" modified choke. I'm sure he shoots all kinds of crap out of all kinds of crap and has a good bit of experimenting under his belt but I would defer to the actual experts in this case.

    Is there anybody in youtube land or on this forum who could expand more on these wax shotshell jobbies? I'm more than confident with #4 buck for HD it's just a topic that interests me, is this an established thing that anybody has used with good effect or is it just kind of silly?
     
  15. JCooperfan1911

    JCooperfan1911 Member

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    No not towards you.

    The SSS carries just two in the tube, and based on 870 and 500 designs, is therefore, not, drop safe.
     
  16. a_canadian

    a_canadian Member

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    Ah, thanks for clarifying. I considered doing a Serbu clone, but the upright grip bothered me. Just don't like the look nor the feel of such grips at all. And the tube capacity of just 2 seemed a bit silly. I wanted to be able to fire 1 or 2 shots without worrying too much about running out of ammunition. 4 was a consideration, but then I'd need a full-size backpack to keep it from sticking out and alarming other hikers, and a full-size backpack would be excessive and frankly silly for day hikes. So I settled on 3, with cutting down the magazine tube and re-threading it, to exactly match the MCS forend.

    Seems to me that Paul does a fairly effective job of covering the merits of #4 buckshot with this video from 2018:



    A possible summary: #4 has enough power, but not a lot of range before pattern entropy means you're likely to miss or wound beyond maybe 25 yards. And for HD use, 25 yards ought to be plenty. If you're needing to take a defensive shot further than that you probably ought to be running for the safe and grabbing a carbine or hunting rifle, or loading a slug in a known-accurate shotgun. Overall he seems to favour 00 buckshot over #4 for increasing effective range slightly.

    Adding into this the notion of using a short barrel - anything between 8" and 14" - and it seems likely you lose another 30% of effective range with buckshot owing to slightly greater spread. This will vary from gun to gun and shell to shell, but I'm making what seems a safe generalization.

    In this video from 3 years earlier, Paul goes into a demonstration of wall penetration.



    In this one he compares .223" to 12ga with 00 buckshot. The .223" will hit your kids in their beds or maybe even your neighbours, even though the bullets start tumbling right away. Buckshot does about the same level of damage after going through a couple of walls including exterior siding. The 9 pellets of buckshot will hit your kids or your neighbours in more places at one time.

    Then he gets into #4 buckshot, low recoil loads. And presto, after 2 interior walls the pellets were stopped by the external wall. So it seems his question is somewhat resolved, at least with lower recoil type #4.

    If a bad guy were to show up in my bedroom doorway, my kid is asleep about 6 to 8 feet behind him. There's a book case covering his lower legs, but most of my son is covered by 2 layers of 5/8" drywall. I would of course, after grabbing the shorty, be trying to move to the left such that there was nothing but open air behind the bad guy, but considering he's already in the bedroom doorway while I'm blinking away sleep and fumbling to rack the slide, doubt that I'd have time to move a few feet across my wife to get a safe backstop. In my particular HD circumstance I am most concerned about that element of the equation. If (more likely) I awaken while a bad guy is still downstairs, as I tend to be wide awake if there's any unusual sound (been up and out of bed with a suppressed .22lr in my hand many times, running down the stairs, only to find a raccoon has come into the kitchen through the cat door - and not shooting them of course, just chasing them back outside), I'm a lot less concerned about backstop as there's nobody anywhere near our home. Still, less damage to plumbing and electrical wires is better for me. So wax slugs make sense, at least until I get to the carbine. And if I haven't managed to lay the bad guy out it's probably going to be because he (they) are running down the street while thanking whatever god they believe in for their luck in evading certain death.

    The shorty 12ga is for short indoor or short outdoor range use, with projectiles tailored for indoor use in that application, and projectiles manufactured for use on big critters for outdoors. I'm not seeing the argument for splitting the difference for HD use. The risk of over-penetration can not be overstated. But if I lived alone, sure, I'd have 00 buckshot loaded every time. And probably use the longer Wingmaster as my bedside gun.
     
  17. Carl N. Brown

    Carl N. Brown Member

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    I have heard tales of the Cut Shell used by the WWII British Home Guard who had to make do with double barrel shotguns.
    I might be persuaded to try Cut Shell in a single or double barrel hinge action shotgun.
    But not in any box or tube fed repeater.
     
  18. JCooperfan1911

    JCooperfan1911 Member

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    Gosh... duck guns and cut shells against MG42s and Sturgewehrs.

    Glad it didn’t come to that!
     
  19. Dirtybob

    Dirtybob Member

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    I've made & shot hundreds of wax slugs. After a short learning curve I ended up buying an inside crimp cutting tool (speedier). Use paraffin wax + w/e shot and only refill to the bottom of the rolled hull then cap with hot glue. Also made a 'rack' out of high density foam to ease cleanup and to keep them round until they cool a bit.
    crimp tool.finished round.jpg
    IMG_20210914_175734802.jpg

    Had one with a bad primer recently so I dismembered it and took a pic. Lost some pellets removing the hot glue...
    IMG_20210822_083601039.jpg

    Also: Paul Harrell on wax slugs
     
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  20. LoonWulf
    • Contributing Member

    LoonWulf Contributing Member

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    As a note I literally bounced a cut slug off the front of a pig's head without killing it, And my experience the shot cup usually pushes the crimp aways out so you don't hit it with full on solid....

    If you left a 16th of an inch of shell connecting the top and bottoms together my Maverick 88 would actually feed one or two from the magazine...... Though again when they broke apart and You're trying to shake shot out of your action, It loses its appeal real quick.
     
  21. a_canadian

    a_canadian Member

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    Indeed there is something of a learning curve, but it didn't take me long to find a favourite little tool to cut out the plastic inside the crimp safely. I did make a tool somewhat like the one you're showing there for a friend and he's used it for custom cast slugs he's reloading into birdshot shells - and that has worked out VERY nicely for him and a friend, who are shooting a lot of 10z slugs at about 1/3 cost.

    Thanks for the Harrell video, somehow I missed that one. In his closing summary he misses mentioning the point he almost made during the meat target portion; lack of over-penetration. Though he did mention it in terms of the penetration being comparable to #7.5 birdshot in the same target, I think the point is central and needs more focus. It is this lack of potential for over-penetration which makes a wax slug using birdshot, whether #7.5 or #8, much safer for HD than any other shotgun shell type except birdshot used as-is. And I'd not want to use plain vanilla birdshot for HD precisely because beyond a few yards it starts losing potential impact fast, and at 10 yards is likely to just leave a bunch of nasty scars. There are loads of photos of career felons with huge patterns of such scar tissue all over their bodies. Not pretty, but obviously not fatal, and some of those guys wear the scars with pride. Makes for better street cred I guess. A wax slug, as Paul demonstrated, will do tremendous damage inside the target without going much beyond it, if at all. Chances are good that all the shot will stay inside the back of a jacket on a bad guy.
     
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  22. The Glockodile

    The Glockodile Member

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    We need a separate thread for these "Wax Slugs!"

    I'm innerested!
     
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  23. danez71

    danez71 Member

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    @bikerdoc @ugaarguy @kudu

    I agree with post 22.

    Is it possible to migrate all the wax shells and cut shell posts into a new thread and leave this thread to the original topic of the OP?

    I'm obviously missing something because your post didn't mention any injury.

    It seems the cut she'll idea could create an over pressure issue with that the OD of the shell being larger than the ID of the barrel.... also being more likely / worse if a choked barrel.

    Why isnt a cut shell dangerous?
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2021
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  24. LoonWulf
    • Contributing Member

    LoonWulf Contributing Member

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    Cut shells are squishy, tho they might damage a tight choke.

    The pig i shot stumbled and ran off, i watched the cut off part of the shell bounce up off his head. Im assuming the shell popped open and most if not all of the shot went somewhere else.
     
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