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If one were to use 12 ga. 7 1/2 load (2 3/4 shell)....how effective would it be for home defense? Can anyone give me specifics... such as, will it penetrate drywall? If one were to miss...and it hit the window...will it over travel and present a danger to homes across the street?
 

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American fearmaker
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ANY projectile fired by ANY firearm has the potential "to over-penetrate" and strike something beyond the intended target. The odds of that happening are very, very small. Both the Police Training Institute @ the University of Illinois and the FBI Firearms Training Unit tell us that out of 4 rounds fired by agents and police officers in combat only 1 round will strike anything at all. The other 3 rounds go out into the world, lose their movement and fall harmlessly to the ground. The fourth round generally strikes something like a tree, side of a building, a car and so on. Only very rarely does a round that strikes its target go through the target to strike something else. Is over-penetration a factor? Yes, it is but not to the degree some people worry about it. Now is light weight shot from a 12 gauge deadly? Yes, it is. I know of one police officer who investigated about 2 dozen suicides and murders where people used shotguns for their killings. A good number of those people used birdshot to kill themselves or other people. Probably about 50% used birdshot. So, a 12 gauge loaded with birdshot is, at close range, as deadly as a 12 gauge loaded with other ammunition types. Like the officer is known to say, "Once that shotgun goes off, there is no appeal in the matter. The results are generally fatal and final." Out of the 24 or so cases the officer investigated, only 2 people survived. One survivor was a girl who still walks with a limp from her shotgun injury. The other was a male who ended up with an artificial foot, from the ankle down, from his shotgun injury. If you feel comfortable using light buckshot out of a 12 gauge for HD or personal protection that is your choice. My personal favorite is 00 buck for me at close range in a one-on-one situation or else use of a slug round. I like the saying of, "Go big or go home." That seems to fit well in most shooting incidents.
 

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Indoors...birdshot will work just fine. While it will in some instances over penitrate. All shot disperses with distance and as such birdshot would be less likely to be fatal to innocent bystanders outise the walls of the home.
 

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Which brand where they? The Winchester 100 packs from wallmrt are pure junk, don't cycle nicely and have a tendancy to bulge...Junk.


The federal 100 packs are nice, cycle well and burn cleanly.

All of them are soft lead that will spread out wider than more expensive shells.
 

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Birdshot is a very poor HD round.
I don't know what HerdSnipers cop friend calls research but my uncle was the head of emergency surgery in two different hospitals, one many years ago in Fresno California and another not too many years ago in Houston.
He told me he has seen many shotgun blast wounds especially in Fresno and the only two fatalities were an infant shot in the head at point blank by his deranged father who also shot his mother repeatedly(she lived and testified) and a diabetic who shot himself in the upper thigh who died not of the actual wound but of infection later....weeks later.
He had seen buck shot wounds too. Most were either debilitating or fatal if in the upper torso or head.
The extremity wounds caused all manner of issues.
He said birdshot was good for causing all kinds of infections and they never got all the shot out of many victims.
He said the same thing about shallow very ugly wounds you will see here.
Unless you are afraid your home will be invaded by sparrows use buckshot and be sure of your target.
Might even go so far as to get some actual training.
Ask **** Cheney how effective birdshot is as a man stopper.
His 70+ year old buddy walked a half mile to his vehicle after a head shot from uncle Dicky about 30 feet away.....some friend.
 

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I'm the boogey man.......
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Birdshot is a very poor HD round.
WHAT?!?!?!?! :rolleyes:

I've been a medic for over a decade and I'll tell you, close range birdshot wounds are DEVASTATING to human tissue, at under 30 feet, which is well within the distance of self defense shooting inside a structure, birdshot is akin to a high speed Cuisinart moving through flesh. Birdshot is also a surgeons nightmare, 100's of tiny little pellets as opposed to 9 or so big ones. Birdshot also has the advantage of lower penetration therefore preventing you from shooting out the wall behind a perp and possible hitting another family member on unintentionally opening a window in a permanent manner during the winter....

Now pay attention to the permanent wound channels.....Ballistic gel is MUCH more accurate at simulating wound channels than drywall ever will be...

Birdshot #8

Large wound channel, minimal risk of over penetration. Do you really need more than 5inches of penetration into flesh for a self defense round ? Think of how many critical organs are less than 5 inches deep within the body..

00 Buckshot

Large wound channel, possible over penetration.


Birdshot if devastatingly effective home defense round, 7 or 8 works great, but I'd go with #4 or #6 for max effect if using birdshot, or even better, BB or T shot duck loads that are closer to being a compromise between the two...Bottom line, birdshot is highly effective and a individual with a 3inch diameter 5 inch deep hole in his chest is no longer a threat.

Oh yea, avoid Winchester Universal at all costs, especially in a semi auto shotgun...
 

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I ain't worried about ballistic gel.
Ballistic gel never shoots back.
If someone is in your house and maybe armed you want them to drop and not get up.
Birdshot makes a shallow nasty wound.
Look at the gel in those pix....see shallow. Shallow = not good in HD.
No bones in that gel either.
Buckshot makes dead people.
I'm repeating what a surgeon who was head of surgery for about 20 years and got his start as a Corpsman in Korea told me.
 

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I have said it before

birdshot inside the distance of most homes will put anyone down. Your shot charge will not have enough distance to spread far and you will more then likely hit the invader with an almost solid shot charge. people who hunt with shotguns know this as fact.

That being said if you had to take the fight outdoors and use the same load at any sort of distance you will be much better off with a larger shot size such as 00B or any of the other defensive buck loads.

if you doubt the effectiveness of bird shot then take your left over halloween pumpkin to the range step back the distance across your living room and blast away and see what happens :thumb:
 

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Michigan Gun Nut
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my suggestion- first shell in the chamber- #7.5., 8 or #9 birdshot. Close enough, it will kill. next shell- either larger birdshot or #4 Buck. if that doesn't work, next shell or shells 00Buck. one of my worries is spray going thru a drywall wall or a window- and kid or something or someone who is innocent getting hit with it. #8 is pretty safe- unless it hits an eye, its minor. Buck is another story.
 

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I'm the boogey man.......
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Ummmm, sorry but bottom line whoever told you that birdshot is ineffective is full of crap to the point of they're eyes are brown. At self defense distances within a structure, the shot really doesn't even really have time to separate from the shot cup, so it might as well just be a frangible slug being fired into a perp.
 

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Yeah a frangible that breaks up into a thousand tiny pieces and stops about 4 inches deep.
How many shot shell victims you treat that were walking and talking?
Buckshot?
You are going to rely on a 3 inch deep woound when the other guy might be armed?
Good luck with that.
And no his eyes were quite blue.
 

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I'm the boogey man.......
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Yeah a frangible that breaks up into a thousand tiny pieces and stops about 4 inches deep.
How many shot shell victims you treat that were walking and talking?
Chest / abdomen shots?
ZERO
Buckshot?
Chest Shots / abdomen?
ZERO

You are going to rely on a 3 inch deep woound when the other guy might be armed?
Good luck with that.
And no his eyes were quite blue.
Sure, in sheer energy transfer the birdshot will have more than most handguns and do more damage.

Also, Kids / family members / neighbors injured by stray buckshot from inside a residence?
3 injured, 2 of the 3 critical and 1 child dead.

Like I stated a 3 inch diameter hole that's 4 inches deep in either the abdomen or chest is gonna stop anyone in their tracks and you have much lower chance of harming someone unintentionally.
 
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I'm the boogey man.......
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I would post some pictures of close range birdshot wounds, but I'll refrain due to the gore level, you can find them on your own...
 

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So why do cops carry buck.
In todays litigious society I would think since birdshot is suck a great HD round it would be ideal for law enforcement.

I won't even go into what Massad Ayoob says about birdshot.

A bit on patterning(important even at close range) those gel pictures were from very short range.
Birdshot spread about a foot in every ten of linear travel IIRC.
Smaller shot, faster pattern spread at shorter range.
a bit on patterns.

Now I will agree that birdshot makes a big nasty scary looking wound and I definitely don't wanna load of it in my chest at room distance.
I will not however agree it is a man stopper.
Neither does the law enforcement community or the military.
 

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American fearmaker
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A shotgun is deadly at close range no matter what you load in it. Don't kid yourself. Across a room you do NOT want to get tagged with ANYTHING from a 12 gauge. My personal favorite is 00 buckshot like I said. BUT birdshot, at close range, is still deadly.

Gunsite produces a number of videos on using firearms. One of these videos involves using a 12 gauge shotgun. I would suggest that anybody interested in tactical use of any firearm get some of these videos and watch them. Their video explains what they suggest that people use and why that ammo should be used.
 

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dum dum
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So, if I were to sit in this chair, or stand in my bedroom doorway...and someone was to kick in my front door...and I started spraying birdshot at this intruder from even my 20 gauge (Remington 1100)...that's, what, 5 blasts in succession...at someone that is (hang on...tape measure time..)19' feet from my chair or 21' from my bedroom door...that I should be worried that this person wouldn't either retreat or fall to the ground holding their gut or even better their face? Do I need to ditch my birdshot? I couldn't imagine, even if I wanted to KILL SOMEONE, and busted into their house...if two then three shotgun blasts were followed my a 4th and a fifth, ya know?
I ALSO know that a shot shell refilled with pillsbury cookie dough fired from a break action 12 gauge "pistol" with a 7 inch barrel WILL leave a person on the ground trying to catch their breath, and a giant freaking strawberry welt under their ribcage...Pillsbury...LTL ammunition, since 1988!:taped::D:

SO back to original post...at 7 yards my birdshot isn't effective? I think I'll stick with it for now...and if the BG keeps coming, I'll move on to a couple of 9mm clips...then the bow and arrows, and if that doesn't stop him, I'll tell him Sarah Connor is hiding in the closet then run.:thumb:
 

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I'm the boogey man.......
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At indoor ranges even "less than lethal" ammo is pretty lethal due to the blunt force trauma factor...
 
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