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Old 01-25-2009, 05:56 PM
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Default Penetration of different 12 gauge slugs?

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I have a 12 gauge 870 Express with an 18 inch barrel that is my HD long gun, and right now, I keep it loaded with Winchester 2 3/4" copper plated 00 Buck. The thing is, I'd like to keep it loaded it with either 2 3/4" Brenneke 1 ounce KO slugs, or 2 3/4" Remington 1 ounce Slugger slugs. Does anybody know anything about the penetration characteristics of these two loads on the human body? I know they'll penetrate plenty deep enough, but what I'm concerned about is over-penetration. Considering that they're all lead, I would think that over-penetration wouldn't be too much of a concern (they'll flatten out), but I'd like to know for sure. I've heard some people say that they usually exit the body and then drop to the ground a few meters later. Can anyone confirm that, or is it BS? Thanks in advance for the help.
Old 01-25-2009, 07:09 PM
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Well I have not shot a person with a slug but I have shot through the metal tubing part of the target stands were I do my three gun shooting. The slug past thru the both side of the metal tube and wood stake and proceed in to the dirt berm.

I would think that a slug would easily over penatrate and could still do damage to anybody behind the person that was shot.

Another reason not to use slug would be that they would easily go through walls which means you could hit innocent people if you missed your target.

Last edited by cavegeo; 01-25-2009 at 07:14 PM..
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Old 01-26-2009, 01:31 PM
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I agree with the above post about a warning of overpenetraion for in house use.

However, I will tell you this, the Brenneke will penetrate much farther in my personal experience than a regular rifled slug from Remmington, Federal, or Winchester. They are designed with a slug that is much less soft and with deeper penetration ability. Still, sometimes the Remmington, ect are better for expansion because of the softer lead.

I've personally seen a Brenneke go through the hind end of a 8 point buck and come out the neck (length wise through a grown deer). Brenneke's are brutal.

One thing EVERYONE should keep in mind, is that with a slug, yes, it will penetrate great distances and possibly cause harm to someone or somehting behind the intended target, but you are only responsible for one projectile. With Buckshot you are responisble for 9 to 41 projectiles (depending on buckshot pellet size)...just somehting to think about. (besides the fact buck severly limits range and does not penetrate well at all)

The whole just falling out a few meters beyond the body? Sounds like a urban myth.
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Old 01-28-2009, 01:19 AM
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Thanks to both of you. I don't think I'll be using slugs in my shotgun for HD, unless I'm out at my Grandparent's place in the country, and even then, I've got an SKS handy for a long arm. Good point about "what if I miss." I'll also keep in mind that Brennekes penetrate much deeper than Sluggers. I did take a large doe in 2002 on Pearl Harbor day with my 20 gauge 870 using 2 3/4" Federal foster-style slugs, but I can't remember whether the slug exited the body or not. Either way, I think that would be an apples and oranges comparison.
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Old 03-27-2009, 09:31 PM
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I've hit half inch steel plates at 25 yards with 12 ga. Remington 3 inch 1 ounce Sluggers and made perfect holes through them. I hate to think how easily they would penetrate a person! Waaaaay too much over-penetration for home defense!!! I'd go with something like: Hornady TAP 2 3/4 in. 00 Buck FPD (For Personal Denfense) shell for home defense!!!
Old 03-28-2009, 02:07 AM
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Any 12 gauge slug can be expected to cause a perforating wound (all the way through) in the human body. Even larger buckshot sizes (OOO and OO) may exit the body from a front-to-back angle. The Brenneke slug will penetrate more than the Foster type slugs due to their being usually made from harder lead alloy and being solid rather than hollow based.
Old 03-28-2009, 02:59 AM
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Brenneke's have greater sectional density causing them to penetrate deeper.

here's a visual aid:

For HD, buckshot will penetrate less in building materials.
Smaller sizes like #4 buck may be better suited for these close distances.
00 and 000 reduced recoil buckshot have 8 and 9 pellets, penetrate deeper, and may be less of a liability due to having better patterns and lower pellet count, reducing the chance of a stray pellet.

If they pattern well, i may go with S&B 21-pellet #4 buckshot @ an advertised 1210 fps for my HD shotguns
Old 03-28-2009, 01:02 PM
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I had slugs in my 870 but changed to buckshot because of penetration concerns.

As I understand it, the buckshot will flatten much quicker than a slug. So, if you miss the buckshot will not keep on truckin' as much.

As was rightly said, there are more of them. However, they are smaller and don't have the composition to do as much damage individually.
Old 01-09-2015, 08:43 PM
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for home defense12 gauge 3 inch # 4 birdshot is plenty. U can cut a man about in half with it at 15 yards. He isn't going to fair very well at 25 yards.
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Old 01-12-2015, 12:03 AM
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Originally Posted by Earlthepearl1955 View Post
U can cut a man about in half with it at 15 yards.
Ummmm source?
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Old 01-12-2015, 03:34 AM
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Originally Posted by Earlthepearl1955 View Post
for home defense12 gauge 3 inch # 4 birdshot is plenty. U can cut a man about in half with it at 15 yards. He isn't going to fair very well at 25 yards.

Birdshots for,uhhh,birds...not 200# humans.
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Old 01-12-2015, 03:47 AM
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#4 birdshot is one of my favorite rounds for night hunting coyotes, and while I've never shot a person with it, I do know it will make a real mess out of a coyote at 15 to 20 yards-including(once) leaving it in 2 pieces.
Old 01-12-2015, 08:28 AM
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I realize this is a 5 year old thread, but I will chime in to add that there are frangible slugs if someone needs to be concerned about over penetration.
Old 01-12-2015, 08:49 AM
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the big rule, especialy in urban housing, is know whats behind your target. nearly every solid projectile is going to have the potential to "pass through and through."@ through the target, through the wall.
the home defense scenerio is typicaly measured in feet, not yards, so slugs seem a bit odd for that useage. slugs were brought into hunting, to extend the range, past the typical 40 yards that buck shot preformed well at. they effectivle extend the range out to and past 100 yards.
early in my shotgun hunting years, we were taken out on a range, with #8 bird shot. a 4X4 post was the target, at 15 feet. that fine bird shot nearly cut that post in half. at point blank, it did. nothing but a gaping hole and spliters at impact point.
seems to me, a simple load of #4 buck with say 21 pellets, at the indoor home defense distances, would more then suffice in a one shot take down. that load would also virtualy eliminate the through and through threat for your neighbors.
do your own test, using #4 buck, and you should find at 10 or 15 feet, your holding a 3 inch pattern, with ample soft tissue penatration, but lacking the devastation of impact on secondary targets from pass through. i used 1 inch pine 4 feet behind a watermellon, and nothing passed through the pine.
Old 01-19-2015, 09:30 AM
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Default Birdshot

# 4 birdshot is plenty to kill a man inside a house....


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