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1/25/2018 7:38:29 AM
Posted: 11/17/2001 6:37:40 PM EST
[Last Edit: 11/17/2001 6:33:37 PM EST by Corey]
I'm considering purchasing a Rem. 870 that I'd turn into something very much like the Scattergun Technologies Border Patrol model. I'd eventually add a light.

But, I think of the possiblity of precision shots at 25 yards (or greater) and would realistically grab my AR15 over a shotgun any day.

I have a fixed CH preban AR15 that I'd like to add an Aimpoint to. Eventually it'll get some type of fixed light. Until then I'll have a Surefire combat light.

I guess I'm just looking for someone to talk me out of the shotgun for home defense use. I realistically want an 18" shotgun because of the cool factor as the only shotgun that I have is a 32" bbl Win M12.

An AR15 (especially a preban with an Aimpoint) is better than an 18" 870 pump for general CQB, right?

I figure by the time the Aimpoint, mounts and accessories is paid for, I have >$400 invested.

For that I could have an 18" NIB Rem 870 Express with a ST extended mag tube/follower/spring and probably also a side shell carrier.

My intellectual side says finish the AR15 carbine project. But my emotional side has me dropping 00 at IDPA targets at 20 yards. But I could just use my .45 for that....

Talk me out of this shotgun dimensia, please!!

EDITED for spelling. Hope I caught it all....
Link Posted: 11/17/2001 6:43:08 PM EST
According to Massad Ayoob, he says that for self-defense you should use most politically correct gun, i.e. shotgun & 45 because it will be easiier to survive in a court of law. Using a politically incorrect gun will count against you.
Link Posted: 11/17/2001 7:00:33 PM EST
At close range(such as inside the home) the shotgun is a deadlier weapon. Also, if you live in a densely populated area, the shotgun is a safer weapon. I love AR's. I shot mine today!! Past 10 yards or so, give me my AR. However; my primary home defense weapon is a Remington 870 police model with an 18 inch barrel, M3 light and 7 shot magazine tube extension.

When I carry concealed it is a HK P7M8. I can't find a good concealment holster for either the AR or the 870!!!


Link Posted: 11/17/2001 7:08:54 PM EST
Pick whatever you're most comfortable of the two. In the wee hours when my brain has been jolted away by the adrenalin dump the racking of a 12 gauge is a comforting thing to hear from my side of the barrel.

The other issue is that you're more likely to have the weapon stolen or burnt in a house fire than to use it to protect yourself. I would rather burn up a $200 Mossberg than a $1400 pre-ban and Aimpoint.

The politics of it all are important too but not as much to me. I'd rather survive to face that damn jury than to be buried. I don't think you'll go far wrong with either weapon with the right ammo.
Link Posted: 11/17/2001 7:14:39 PM EST
Call me old school but I like iron sights.

Get the hardware. Purchase the 870. Practice more with the AR. Shoot 3 gun matches - have fun.

You may also want to see if Vang has any holiday specials coming up - usually does around X-mas.

Link Posted: 11/17/2001 7:30:22 PM EST
I gotta side with Six on this one, shoot the gun as issued, know what it,and you, can do all the way out to as far as you can shoot.
As good as the Aimpoint is ya gotta remember Murphy's Law of Unintended Consequences; that is; the only time a system will go down is when you need it the most.
as far as what to use in the house, the basic black shotgun of course
Link Posted: 11/17/2001 8:04:21 PM EST
First, competing in the 3 gun matches or taking good instruction in pistol, shotgun, and defensive carbine ( as opposed to a precision rifle type course) will answer alot of your own questions.

Second, really consider the self-defense aspect of your choice. I do believe that a shotgun in a defensive scenario would play out better in a court of law and with a jury than an AR-15. People have been taught by what they hear and see on TV and what they read in the papers and a shotgun has a different image than "Assault Weapons" (read "friendlier")

Practically, for true in-home defense, the SG makes more sense because at near contact ranges the SG makes devestating wounds while the .223 certainly does create awesome close range devestation, but it does not lose the energy over distance or intervening materials like the SG. This is important since misses with the .223 may travel for miles and buck shot or even slugs will shed velocity and power within safer ranges. I don't see where the AR is not a good choice for HD, I just see an opportunity for the SG to perform well in this role.
Link Posted: 11/17/2001 8:12:13 PM EST
[Last Edit: 11/17/2001 8:08:10 PM EST by 8200rpm]
Shooting an AR in the confines of your home is a good way of losing your hearing. Also, Aimpoints rely on batteries; 870's rely on your arm, take your pick.

Whether it's the AR or the 870, forget the doodads and go for the ammo and training.

I paid $289 for a black 18" 870 with a factory 2-shot extension. It's loads of fun for skeet shooting. Those who use their shotguns for ONLY defense are missing out, big time!
Link Posted: 11/18/2001 2:31:28 AM EST
8200rpm has a good point. I vote you buy a set of pro-ers or Peltors. I love my tac 7's.
Link Posted: 11/18/2001 9:45:24 AM EST
Yeah, like you have time in a defensive scenario to put on hearing protection.

It takes me several moments time to check and double check what hearing protection is in my range bag before I leave on a planned shooting outing, I don't think I could do that if a bad guy's breaking down the door in my house. Can you?

What's a little hearing loss compared to the alternative of getting killed?
Link Posted: 11/18/2001 11:10:29 AM EST
what kind of house do you live in apartment,trailer,codo,duplex,are you the only person in the house their are alot of things to consider befor one makes a chocie on a home defence gun.With a AR-15 type fire arm you have a weapon with vast amounts of aftermarket product you could use to fit your needs.But if your not going to use a prefragmented type bullet,you have to consider over penetration;and the high possibility of the bullet even exiting your house,and still being able to kill or injure someone.The 12ga.is a good chocie also can also be outfitted as you see fit.With a side shell carrier speedfed stock you can have at hand w/you'r 870 10 rds in spare ammo not counting whats in the tube.Slugs for the long shots,buck,#4 shot,and even bean bag rouds,all giving you pretty much a sheel for what ever could come up.The sound of the rack alone is 90o/o of the time going to trigger the flight responce from any one with half a brain.Its hard for D.A. to covert a jury of 12 thats grown up with Dads 12 in the closet in to beliving that some how you'r gun that pulls double duty as you'r house gun and lets say squirrel gun,is the reason for the demise of society.Its best you make you'r pick after looking at all the ins and outs,and not let others steer you in the direction of there picking.
Link Posted: 11/18/2001 11:18:55 AM EST
Here's another take on it:

Close contact distance (hand to hand,or arms radius and extending beyond within house) = pistol

Beyond arms length to room distance = shotgun

Outside or perimeter of house, in the street, rural conditions (harder to justify self-defense)= defensive rifle/carbine (AR-15)
Link Posted: 11/18/2001 12:02:37 PM EST
Alot of factors to consider here,huh?{A} The only reason for using a handgun is to fight your way back to your long gun,which you were stupid enough to leave behind in the first place.I personally really beleive this,and I can shoot a handgun pretty well.{B} I'd hate to have to make a headshot on the bad guy past one of my daughters heads with a load of bird or buckshot,but an AR at 10yards?Routine.My thoughts are that a dependable short AR combined with a good plan would be tough to beat.Ever think about where you'd shoot from,what the backstop would be,how you go about checking out the house,use of cover,etc.?Knowing the "terrain"{its your house,right?} gives one a decided edge.Hey,use whatever you shoot best I guess.I mean a .22 beats a thrown rock,right?
Link Posted: 11/18/2001 12:42:37 PM EST
[Last Edit: 11/18/2001 12:37:44 PM EST by Derek45]
Get an 870, short barrel.and extended mag.
Link Posted: 11/18/2001 1:37:02 PM EST

How's that barrel/mag clamp hold? Or, is it a real loc-tite kind of deal?

I like how you've got the side saddle set up for buck and Brenekes.
Link Posted: 11/18/2001 3:33:04 PM EST
Dont use AR-15, not because it sucks for self defense but cops/courts/jury hates the "evil rifle" and you want to use something that is more "sporty", like that shotgun you skeet shoot with... Dont even think about using that 80% lower guns for self defense, its legal but cops and etc. will see that as you being "street gang" or whatever, not good either ways...
Link Posted: 11/18/2001 3:52:12 PM EST

Originally Posted By punkatomic:

How's that barrel/mag clamp hold? Or, is it a real loc-tite kind of deal?

I like how you've got the side saddle set up for buck and Brenekes.

The mag extension is a CHOATE, I got it from www.brownells.com it's a nut on one side, a sling swivel on the other.
I don't have loc-tite on it because, it never comes loose, untill I take it off every deer season.
Link Posted: 11/18/2001 5:18:50 PM EST
Aimpoints SUCK at night! Yes, the dot is more visible in "low-light" conditions, but when there is less light on your target than the dot is putting out you effectively are looking into a mirror with a red dot on it! I tried an Aimpoint on a shot gun and it really helped target acquisition at dusk. But not long after that, visiblity becomes Zero because of the mirror effect.
Link Posted: 11/18/2001 6:05:50 PM EST

The only reason I'm really shying away from the 870 is what Downzero said: There's no way I'd even attempt a 10-15 yard head shot past a hostage (i.e., your kid or wife) with a shotgun. But that's routine with AR15's. Heck, it's routine with 1911's, but you're only shooting at cardboard. If it even came down to that ONE SHOT, I'd want an AR15 with a dot sight.

Good thoughts by all.

BTW, I always thought that OO buck had great energy after penetrating walls than M193.
Link Posted: 11/18/2001 6:54:12 PM EST
[Last Edit: 11/18/2001 6:47:27 PM EST by punkatomic]
Choosing the AR over the SG because of the highly unlikely hostage scenario involving the wife or kid is truly interesting.

Such a shot is a real rarity, just ask any real LEO. There's more going on than simply a marksmanship issue when a bad guy is holding a loved one such as imagined here.

One cannot anticipate all possibilities and any weapon is better than none when faced with hostile actions. The question would have to be asked, Why did you allow the wife or kid to get grabbed by the BG instead of shooting him before that happened? And, If you could not control that, why didn't you gain some advantage at a critical moment during the grab to ensure an almost contact shot to BG's central nervous system?

Best solution: Have a pistol, AR, and a SG and whatever ends up in your hands you go with.
Link Posted: 11/18/2001 7:07:25 PM EST
I have an AR and a tacticle 870. I would choose my 870 over any gun that I have for home defence. It is my thought that 000 buck shot will not go through as many wall of a house as a 223 bullet. That way you don't have to worry about shooting people that you don't want to shoot.
Link Posted: 11/18/2001 8:34:12 PM EST
Definitely the shotgun.

Somebody else briefly touched on this point but: Fire 'one' round from your AR in confined spaces and your pretty much out of it. The noise, flash, muzzle blast bounce of walls and ceilings and do quite an effective job of disorienting, if not incapacitating, everybody.

I forget which magazine I read this report in, it was a long time ago, but I am almost positive it was Masaad Ayoob. The report cited instances of unsuppressed AR's being fired in confined spaces such as bedrooms and hallways that produced things like temporary hearing loss, temporary vision loss, complete disorientation, even nose bleeds. I would definitely NOT want to be so vulnerable in a situation like that...
Link Posted: 11/19/2001 5:10:11 AM EST
It is absolutely false that a .223 bullet is more penetrating than a load of buckshot or slug. Pistol ammunition is more penetrating than a .223 for that matter.

That is why in general SWAT teams are switching away from the MP5's and toward the CAR-15.

The .223 bullet is extremely light compared to a pistol round, shot ball, or a slug for God sakes. Sure, proceding unabated, the .223 is a flatter shooting cartridge, but a double plaster wall will kill a .223 bullet far more effectively than any slug's. At 500 yds, an errant slug will hit far harder than a .223.

I have read this pretty recently and will try to dig up a link.
Link Posted: 11/19/2001 5:27:59 AM EST
Here is some interesting reading about the effectiveness and relative safety of using .223 in a defensive role.

Link Posted: 11/19/2001 6:53:10 AM EST
I use a Remington 870 Express for my HD weapon and I bought it used for $150. She isn't anything special with a 8-rd mag extender and she sports my 21-inch Turkey Barrel with an IC choke....

I use the 870 with Fereral #4 shot Personal defence load. Inside a house this is more than adequate!

I use the shotgun as this allows me to keep the 870 stored in the bedroom with my significantly more valuable weapons secured in the safe where they can not be stollen and used for a ill purpose. If the shit hits tha fan I can use the shotgun to defend my position until the safe is opened... but the shotgun is my choice for inside the house!
Link Posted: 11/19/2001 7:06:27 AM EST

Originally Posted By punkatomic:
Yeah, like you have time in a defensive scenario to put on hearing protection.

It takes me several moments time to check and double check what hearing protection is in my range bag before I leave on a planned shooting outing, I don't think I could do that if a bad guy's breaking down the door in my house. Can you?

What's a little hearing loss compared to the alternative of getting killed?

Put your electronic hearing protection, and only your electronic hearing protection, with your home defense weapon. If you have time, put it on (less than one second). If you don't have time, don't, no loss. If you have time and did not put it on, consider the following possibilities:
1) You shoot the bad guy, lose your hearing temporarily, and fail to hear bad guy # 2, who kills you.
2) You shoot the bad guy, lose your hearing temporarily, and a little later fail to hear the police officer behind you telling tou to drop the weapon because he doesn't know who is who when he responds.

I personally have the Glock 35 in a keypad safe at bedside. If there is a no-time sitaution, that's what I'm going for. If I have time to get the AR or Moss 500, I have time to get the hearing protection.
Link Posted: 11/19/2001 7:51:01 AM EST
Consider this:

Two world wars and several armed conflicts were fought by modern American soldiers without hearing protection. Everyday tens of thousands of Police men and women go about their duties, armed and without hearing protection. Civilians who have fired shots in self defense have done so in most cases, again, without hearing protection.

In many cases, Police and others have stated that they don't remember hearing loud gunshots. Apparently adrenaline masks the pain and loud report of the blasts.

I have never heard a firearms instructor advocate a plan to include putting on hearing protection when faced with deadly force. Ever!
Link Posted: 11/19/2001 8:12:42 AM EST
What about active electronic muffs? They actually can enhance your hearing if you turn them up. I've never tried them, but they're on my shopping list.
Link Posted: 11/19/2001 8:28:42 AM EST
I'd go for the 870 shotgun. And you won't need to worry about '25 yard' shots, almost all home defensive encounters are 7 yards OR LESS!
Link Posted: 11/19/2001 8:45:46 AM EST

Originally Posted By Corey:
What about active electronic muffs? They actually can enhance your hearing if you turn them up. I've never tried them, but they're on my shopping list.

Both the Peltors and Pro ears I referenced are active. From personal experience i can tell you the Peltors do increase your ability to hear quiet sounds when turned up all the way.
Link Posted: 11/19/2001 8:53:51 AM EST
Link Posted: 11/19/2001 9:13:31 AM EST
Took the Gunsite 260 (shotgun) course 3 months ago and can tell you that an 860 w/ VangComp will handle your concerns in regards to head shots on a BG in a hostage type setting. Also agree with previous posts on a pistol for bad breath range as it will probably be the first thing obtainable, followed by the 870 for anything else in the house. Spend the money on quality trainiing and use a borrowed/rented firearm first to see what you really need & want. People @ my course were swapping guns for hands on with different mfg. and systems exposure. Just my .02 worth
Link Posted: 11/19/2001 2:22:55 PM EST
Ummmm I never used the word "hostage".My kids are more likely to be swinging on the perp with a louisville slugger than being held hostage anyway.As far as going for a "contact shot to the nervous system", its the contact part I cant get past.The best part of a firearm is that its a remote control weapon.Why on earth would you get within contact range when you can shoot em from across the room? Just my opinion,and my wife will be glad to tell you what thats worth.
Link Posted: 11/19/2001 3:00:30 PM EST
I love these stories about indoor gunfire giving nosebleeds and concussions. I fired a M82A1 .50 SASR out of a firing port in a concrete tower. You can feel the building shake, but there are no physiological effects that are noticable. I find it hard to believe that a 5.56mm NATO round would be worse.
Link Posted: 11/19/2001 3:18:03 PM EST
Go with the shotgun. I wouldn't want my aimpoint on my defensive AR for three reasons:

1. I don't want to take the time to turn it on and find the correct brightness setting.

2. I don't want to take the time to figure out where the dot is when the batteries are dead.

3. You can see the dot in the dark, but it is harder to see the target in low light through the glass. You lose light transmission with any glass.

My aimpoint will be going on a hunting rifle. I think I'll be putting Trijicon's tritium iron sights on my AR for low light, close range stuff. I'm really not thrilled with their Reflexes, either. I don't want to fiddle with controls when someone is about to kill me.

But think about a shorter barrel on that shotgun:


or even better:


Oh yeah....

Link Posted: 11/20/2001 6:09:51 PM EST
Not being one to let a tired thread die easily I'll add one more sorta mundane thought for the nine hundred and ninety nine thousand other mornings when you didn't spend the night running the gun dry on a band of drug crazed thugs...to clear the AR and lock it up before heading to the salt mine for the day you merely drop the mag and jack out one round.To clear the 12 ga. you must run all 5,8 or ten rounds thru the action,increasing the chances for a slam fire and the resulting hole in your wife's new wallpaper by a factor of 5,8 or ten.
Link Posted: 11/21/2001 12:58:48 AM EST

There is a way to administratively unload a SG without running the rounds through the action.

It's difficult for me to describe here, but basically for a Rem. 870 you bring back the slide forend to nearly the stop, then roll the receiver to the right and allow the round exiting the chamber to eject guiding with your hand. Then you push up on the shell latch and finish pulling the slide forend back. The next round will pop out of the mag tube so catch it with your hand. Then press the little tab on the inside right receiver with your index finger and rounds will come out the tube one by one. Other SG's have methods which are different, but rounds do not have to go through the action.
Link Posted: 11/21/2001 2:00:48 AM EST
My advise is the Rem 870 12 ga. is best choice for home defense. The sound of racking a shotgun would put most intruders on notice they are about to "have a bad day." They may turn and leave avoiding your use of deadly force. Wall penetration with shotgun would be minimal vs. .223 round, this would be consideration for other family members in household, neighbors or innocent by standers. Depending on household situation ie. apartment, mobilehome or trailer home, the wall penetration issue likely with .223 could be very harmful to innocent persons far outside the immediate area of intruder.........I also think you need an Aimpoint!! get both but use 12ga. for intruder protection.
Link Posted: 11/21/2001 4:04:16 AM EST

Originally Posted By 11BravoE5:
I love these stories about indoor gunfire giving nosebleeds and concussions. I fired a M82A1 .50 SASR out of a firing port in a concrete tower. You can feel the building shake, but there are no physiological effects that are noticable. I find it hard to believe that a 5.56mm NATO round would be worse.

Since I have never done that, I can't disagree with you. My post was, however, quoting a highly reputable source in a widely read magazine.

I just don't know what the real deal is on this but I can say that I have fired an M16 on full auto from a very well made covered fighting position and I remember feeling the concussion hitting me in the face (not to mention lots of brass that bounced back off the wall). I would guess that firing out of a window with the barrell outside or at least the muzzle blast escaping out through it is different than firing in an enclosed room.

Maybe someday I will win the lottery and buy a house just to try this out! I will invite everyone over and we can have a "see who gets a concussion" party!
Link Posted: 11/24/2001 7:03:49 PM EST
I would go with a shot gun for home defense ,I've seen mosseburgs with 10 round detachable drums for $450 .not that would make for good home defense even had pistol grip fore end.
Link Posted: 11/25/2001 1:00:22 AM EST
Rem 870 12 gauge is next to my bed. And being in an apartment, I have to consider 5.56 rounds flying thru walls into other apartments. If you have a house, there could also be your wife / kids in the next room, etc. I think shotgun with a light shot is best for home defense.
Link Posted: 11/25/2001 4:16:33 AM EST
I would go with the shotgun personally, my second choice would be my Sig. AR would be next in line, followed by any of my .30 cal or 8mm rifles. lastly, would be my .75 cal Brown bess. It would be interesting to see what the bess would do to a perp, but I won't take the chance, when my family's life is on the line.

All this talk of AR's indoors is BS. I've fired them indoors. Yes it's loud, but it won't give you nosebleeds, concussions, etc. I ETS'd with mild hearing loss, but that was probably more from being a .60 gunner, and being near incoming artillery.
Link Posted: 11/25/2001 4:20:00 AM EST
Shotgun rules all

Anyway you shot a damn AR in your house and .........EVERBODY WILL HAVE TO TALK TO YOU LIKE THIS!
Link Posted: 11/25/2001 6:03:41 AM EST
Okay, how about this? I hear just fine. In fact I hear just as well as I did as a kid when they'd give us constant hearing tests in elementary school.

I've fired an AR indoors. Really, really indoors. Not your long, carpeted hallway to reduce the sound. Not your wide ass master bedroom.

I fired an AR inside of a pitch black, concrete, 6x6 foot outdoor bathroom. We set up a shot barrel with water and sand in the bottom, closed the door, turned out the lights, and let her rip. One shot.

Set my ears to ringing like a bitch, and gave me a nice photo-flash effect. The instant I turned on the lights, I could see again just fine, albeit for that little bit of flash-haze you get in your eyes. Within a couple minutes, I could hear well enough to not need anyone yelling at me.

I did this. I don't know about anyone else's situation, but we wanted to see what would happen. Maybe stupid, maybe not. I was betting against nosebleeds and deafness. I won.

Anyway. YMMV.
Link Posted: 11/25/2001 8:52:39 AM EST
Stick with the 870 & a surefire light....if penetration is a concern move down to the larger game loads...or stagger your rounds...first one birdshot next #4 buck 00 buck slugs ..for example...practice cycle the action ..and spend time shooting ...cleaning trouble shooting...make some mods...skeletonized shell lifter..larger safety head..
Scattergun Tech makes some nice mods...remember in any encounter..the adrenaline will be flowing..you will do as you practice...
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