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  #1  
Old 07-28-2008, 08:01 PM
squeegee squeegee is offline
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Shotgun -- lethal range?

What is approximately the lethal range of a shotgun? Say, a twelve guage, or whatever it is that crazy people shoot church goers with (shudder). I realize that the answer depends on the round, but in general what's the common measure? How safe were the people in the back of that church from gunfire? Or was anyone?

Thank god that that asshole walked past those kids in the hall. Jesus.
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  #2  
Old 07-28-2008, 08:25 PM
DrDeth DrDeth is offline
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A slug 200yards+. Buckshot 100 yards, birdshot= very close, maybe 25 yards.

But I wouldn't want to be even 200 yards away from a charge of buckshot, one shot could get me at that range if I was really unlucky.

I have been hit by bird shot from some 100 yards and it just stung.
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  #3  
Old 07-28-2008, 08:46 PM
silenus silenus is offline
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75 yards is about the best "lethal range" for a shotgun, but depending on the load, choke, barrel config and the like, it varies. At 100 yards, the odds of getting hit by a pellet of 00 buckshot aimed at you is minute. Inside 50 yards, just about anything bigger than #6 shot can be dangerous, although the likelihood of anything lighter than buckshot killing you is also minute. The problem isn't with the pellets aimed at you, it's with the ones marked "To Whom It May Concern."
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  #4  
Old 07-28-2008, 09:00 PM
adirondack_mike adirondack_mike is offline
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I am looking at my handy dandy "Ammunition & Ballistics Info" playing cards (purchased BTW at Wal*Mart in Bedford, PA) and the nine of diamonds has the following info on the range of shotgun ammunition:

Is the same as in this table.

The formula used is discussed here.

Of course that is the maximum range.

There is really no safe down range distance unless you are auditioning for the Darwin Club.
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  #5  
Old 07-28-2008, 09:26 PM
Fubaya Fubaya is offline
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That's my home town and a few months ago I was a member of a group that held meetings there, but I never went to any of them so I don't know how large the church is, but I suspect no one was safe. They said today he used a 12 gauge
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  #6  
Old 07-28-2008, 09:28 PM
squeegee squeegee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adirondack_mike
There is really no safe down range distance unless you are auditioning for the Darwin Club.
I was more interested in "didn't die", or at least unlikely to die, which isn't the same as "safe".

Quote:
Originally Posted by DrDeth
A slug 200yards+
By slug, do you mean "bullet"? Or is this a shotgun load I'm unfamiliar with (and I'm pretty vague on shotguns, I admit). I thought you could only load a shotgun, with uh... "shot" ?
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  #7  
Old 07-28-2008, 09:32 PM
FoieGrasIsEvil FoieGrasIsEvil is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by squeegee
I was more interested in "didn't die", or at least unlikely to die, which isn't the same as "safe".

By slug, do you mean "bullet"? Or is this a shotgun load I'm unfamiliar with (and I'm pretty vague on shotguns, I admit). I thought you could only load a shotgun, with uh... "shot" ?
A slug is generally used by hunters in a shotgun for deer, and it has quite an impact within 100-200 yards, and after that, not so much. Slugs are really lethal at close range obviously, because you are basically trading away a pattern for a single slug. Whether or not the shotgun barrel you're using is rifled or not makes a huge difference too. Rifled slug shots can carry an impact pretty far and with a lot of force.
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  #8  
Old 07-28-2008, 09:42 PM
Apex Rogers Apex Rogers is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by squeegee
I was more interested in "didn't die", or at least unlikely to die, which isn't the same as "safe".

By slug, do you mean "bullet"? Or is this a shotgun load I'm unfamiliar with (and I'm pretty vague on shotguns, I admit). I thought you could only load a shotgun, with uh... "shot" ?
Both types come in the familiar-looking shells that I'm sure you're well aware of. What differs is what is located inside the shell. For shot, you're looking at a number of round piece of metal, which is itself conveniently known as shot. For slugs, there will only be one of these inside a shell, and it is a hunk of metal that is roughly "bullet-shaped" (close enough for a hand-waving definition). That's about as much as I know from a layman's perspective.
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  #9  
Old 07-28-2008, 10:48 PM
Stealth Potato Stealth Potato is offline
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Yeah, a rifled slug is pretty much like one huge bullet fired from a shotgun. Shotgun bores are smooth, so to improve accuracy, the slug itself has angled ribs on it, like in this picture. The ribs engage the bore and impart a spin to the projectile, similarly to how a rifle bullet engages the grooves in a rifled bore. They're definitely powerful stoppers at considerable range compared to other shotgun loads, considering their tremendous size.

Birdshot, on the other hand, consists of a whole lot of really tiny pellets, that are often made of steel instead of lead. They disperse quickly and lose their velocity fairly rapidly too. At very close ranges (say, less than 10 yards) a load of birdshot would cause devastating injuries. Get much farther than that, though, and I could see a person surviving even a direct hit to the trunk. At long range, as DrDeth has already related, birdshot can barely injure you at all.
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  #10  
Old 07-28-2008, 11:18 PM
squeegee squeegee is offline
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Okay, thanks to the posters above for the info on slugs in shotguns -- ignorance fought. I have fired a shotgun before, but didn't know there was anything but "shot" shells. I don't own a shotgun, or I'd probably know more about the topic.

Wow, 50-75 yards is lethal! -- I always pictured shotguns as more for close encounters -- home protection, police riot weapon, that sort of thing. As well as for shooting at birds with lighter ammo -- there was a quite a bit of commentary about smaller shotguns and bird loads after the whole Cheney thing that told me stuff I wasn't aware before, which was interesting (if topically a little weird).
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  #11  
Old 07-28-2008, 11:25 PM
squeegee squeegee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stealth Potato
Birdshot, on the other hand, consists of a whole lot of really tiny pellets, that are often made of steel instead of lead.
I'm guessing the steel-not-lead thing is because you'll probably be eating that bird, and lead would be Bad. ?
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  #12  
Old 07-28-2008, 11:33 PM
silenus silenus is offline
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Actually it's more of an "introducing lead into the Cirle of Life" issue. Lead shot gets eaten by fish, which get eaten by raptors, which poisons their eggs, etc. Steel shot is an effort to reduce the lead contamination of the wilderness food cycle.
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  #13  
Old 07-29-2008, 06:28 AM
GomiBoy GomiBoy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by squeegee
Okay, thanks to the posters above for the info on slugs in shotguns -- ignorance fought. I have fired a shotgun before, but didn't know there was anything but "shot" shells. I don't own a shotgun, or I'd probably know more about the topic.

Wow, 50-75 yards is lethal! -- I always pictured shotguns as more for close encounters -- home protection, police riot weapon, that sort of thing. As well as for shooting at birds with lighter ammo -- there was a quite a bit of commentary about smaller shotguns and bird loads after the whole Cheney thing that told me stuff I wasn't aware before, which was interesting (if topically a little weird).
You're right on about a shotgun being ideal for home defense. Higher caliber rifles, including the humble .22, have an ultimate range of a mile or more. A shotgun is an ideal home defense weapon because the shot dissipates quickly, as well as accuracy at short range - you only have to basically point in their general direction and the shot cone does the rest. Fire a shotgun (with other than slugs in it) at a normal solid-core door or wall, i.e. in a home defense situation where you're shooting at someone in your house, and it's unlikely for the shot you missed to go through the walls and especially unlikely to hurt someone next door, but will very handily mess up whoever has broken in. A pistol, or even more a high caliber rifle, will potentially go through the person, through the wall, into the next wall, and kill someone on the far side.

It's also why they are the weapon of choice for riot police. You can fire rubber-, sandbag-, or even rock salt-loaded 12 gauge rounds, but even if you load for bear, you'll knock down the first line of rioters but won't kill granny in her flat down the street, which is kinda what you want if you're a cop.

Think about this - Cheney shot his lawyer from about 30 yards away with light bird shot from a 12 gauge. Birdshot is designed to disperse in a 'cone' pattern and spread out to kill a bird in flight (or smash a clay pigeon) if you can catch the bird with part of that cone; the cone does mean that the shot is pretty far and wide apart, though. The Lawyer didn't die, in spite of being shot basically in the face - I think he only caught 5 or 10 pieces of shot out of about 150 fired. It's all about the type of shell as described above. I'd bet the nutjob in the church had buckshot in his gun, so his effective range for lethal damage was about 50 yards, which in a full medium-sized church is pretty much everybody but the choir and the minister.
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  #14  
Old 07-29-2008, 01:27 PM
kellner kellner is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GomiBoy
A shotgun is an ideal home defense weapon because the shot dissipates quickly, as well as accuracy at short range - you only have to basically point in their general direction and the shot cone does the rest.
There is one thing I often wondered. It seems to me that in home defense situations the distances involved are often pretty short. Does the shot cone make a noticeable difference at a distance of e.g. five or ten meters?
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  #15  
Old 07-29-2008, 04:35 PM
MrBelding MrBelding is offline
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No it doesn't because it doesn't move out that quickly. You'd have to be shooting something with a cone on the end for it to spread quickly. However, with a regular barrel (uniform length throughout) it would take a longer distance for the shot to dissipate.
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  #16  
Old 07-29-2008, 05:51 PM
Sinaijon Sinaijon is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stealth Potato
Shotgun bores are smooth.
Its also quite popular to use rifled or 'slug' barrels for shotguns, basically converting it to a rifle. Strangely, hunting regulations usually allow for it, even if rifles are explicitly not allowed.

You can also use saboted slugs in a rifle barrel, which uses a smaller projectile, and increases range even more.
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  #17  
Old 07-29-2008, 07:51 PM
DrDeth DrDeth is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrBelding
No it doesn't because it doesn't move out that quickly. You'd have to be shooting something with a cone on the end for it to spread quickly. However, with a regular barrel (uniform length throughout) it would take a longer distance for the shot to dissipate.
Yes, it does give you a couple extra inches of fudge factor, mind you- which could be helpful.

At "across the room range" the spread is a few inches, maybe a coffee-cup, maybe a saucer.
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  #18  
Old 07-29-2008, 08:19 PM
ExTank ExTank is offline
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Don't underestimate the penetration of buckshot at short range; I've unloaded 00 at thin steel plate (~<1/16") at about 7 yards and had a few penetrations.

If you're expecting some drywall and sheet wood to stop buckshot, your neighbor's in for a rude surprise.
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  #19  
Old 07-29-2008, 08:24 PM
carnivorousplant carnivorousplant is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by silenus
Lead shot gets eaten by fish, which get eaten by raptors, which poisons their eggs, etc.
I had heard that here in the "Duck Capitol of the World" is was ducks eating lead shot.
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  #20  
Old 07-29-2008, 08:35 PM
silenus silenus is offline
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It's kinda everything eating lead shot. Steel shot rusts away and doesn't poison the food chain.

As for the "Cone of Death" some people think a shotgun gives you, let it just be noted that as far as home defense distances go, you can regard the shotgun as being a rifle. In less than 10 feet, the shot is going to spread not at all. "Point in the general direction" is not an option. ID your target, aim for center of mass, and put it down.
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  #21  
Old 07-29-2008, 08:50 PM
Fubaya Fubaya is offline
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One of the local papers today said he used No. 4 shot. He fired three times and hit 8 people. The first shot was apparently fired into the crowd from behind, hitting random people, then 2 died from close range shots.
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  #22  
Old 07-29-2008, 08:51 PM
carnivorousplant carnivorousplant is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by silenus
As for the "Cone of Death" some people think a shotgun gives you,
It's the hit it gives you, is it not? I shot myself with a .32 ACP when I was a kid, and the only thing that hurt was the stitches. I could empty the clip into the bad guy, and he could beat me to death with a chair while he bled to death.
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  #23  
Old 07-29-2008, 09:06 PM
silenus silenus is offline
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Yep. Getting a torso hit from a 12 gauge loaded with 00 buckshot can ruin your whole day. That's like getting hit with 8 .32 cal bullets, all at the same time, and within 2 inches of each other. Massive trauma and failure of any organ that happened to be in the way. Pretty much the same from any shot at that distance. That's why my shotgun has a #4 buckshot round loaded first. Then 00 buck, then a saboted slug, in case I want to kill their car.
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  #24  
Old 07-30-2008, 12:16 AM
DesertDog DesertDog is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by silenus
That's why my shotgun has a #4 buckshot round loaded first. Then 00 buck, then a saboted slug, in case I want to kill their car.
A home defense book I read ages ago recommended a no-choke, short barreled pump shotgun with 7Ĺ shot for the first round or two, followed by the heavier rounds in case of escalation. The reasoning was the birdshot will do nicely at in-house ranges, say seven yards, yet not penetrate walls so much.
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  #25  
Old 07-30-2008, 03:31 AM
slaphead slaphead is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carnivorousplant
I had heard that here in the "Duck Capitol of the World" is was ducks eating lead shot.
Many birds will eat gravel etc. to fill their gizzards with nice food-grinding stuff. If they eat lead shot they may die from lead poisoning. I believe this is a huge problem with fishing weights, presumably it is also an issue with shotguns.
e.g. from here
Quote:
Ingestion of fishing-weights causes lead toxicosis in waterbirds. An estimated average of 125 to 187 million lead sinkers are deposited in Canadian waters annually, with about half in Ontario. Of 215 dead common loons (Gavia immer) collected in Canadian waters, 23% died of lead poisoning; most specimens were from Ontario.
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  #26  
Old 07-30-2008, 06:17 AM
GomiBoy GomiBoy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by silenus
As for the "Cone of Death" some people think a shotgun gives you, let it just be noted that as far as home defense distances go, you can regard the shotgun as being a rifle. In less than 10 feet, the shot is going to spread not at all. "Point in the general direction" is not an option. ID your target, aim for center of mass, and put it down.
not a 'cone of death' but considerably larger area of impact at ranges of 5-10 feet than the size of the barrel. As stated above, somewhere between cup and saucer-size cone at that range. Doesn't mean you don't have to aim, just that you've got more wiggle room than a rifle barrel or a slug, which is exactly the size of the barrel it's fired from.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ExTank
Don't underestimate the penetration of buckshot at short range; I've unloaded 00 at thin steel plate (~<1/16") at about 7 yards and had a few penetrations.

If you're expecting some drywall and sheet wood to stop buckshot, your neighbor's in for a rude surprise.
Yes, buckshot would penetrate an average civilian internal wall fairly nicely, but nearly any birdshot would not, which was kinda my point. You load slugs or buck for home defense in an urban area, you're gonna more likely get some collateral damage. #4 like Senior Whackjob in the church in Tennessee and it's quite a bit less likely.
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  #27  
Old 07-30-2008, 08:34 AM
Sinaijon Sinaijon is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by silenus
That's why my shotgun has a #4 buckshot round loaded first. Then 00 buck, then a saboted slug, in case I want to kill their car.
Just an FYI, a saboted slug is basically worthless without a rifled barrel. Without rifling on either the slug or the barrel, there isn't an stability, and the slug will almost always start tumbling end over end. At that point, it's basically a knuckle ball and you never know which way its gonna go. Accuracy at that point is basically luck.

And on the other hand, a rifled barrel is worthless for shot. So you might want to try just a regular old brenneke type slug rather than the saboted one.
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  #29  
Old 07-30-2008, 10:31 AM
GomiBoy GomiBoy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sinaijon
Just an FYI, a saboted slug is basically worthless without a rifled barrel. Without rifling on either the slug or the barrel, there isn't an stability, and the slug will almost always start tumbling end over end. At that point, it's basically a knuckle ball and you never know which way its gonna go. Accuracy at that point is basically luck.

And on the other hand, a rifled barrel is worthless for shot. So you might want to try just a regular old brenneke type slug rather than the saboted one.
105/120mm smoothbore cannons on the M1 Abrams uses a fin-stabilized sabot for just this reason. The sabot puts a HUGE amount of velocity into the smaller-than-bore round, but velocity is useless if it's horribly inaccurate as you pointed out. I think some shotgun flechettes, as well as some sabots, have tiny metal fins to help with this... but I can't imagine they're cheap or easy to get as I can't imagine any civilian usage...
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  #30  
Old 07-30-2008, 10:34 AM
GomiBoy GomiBoy is offline
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Those are wicked cool. I used to target shoot my hunting rifle in MT with milk jugs half filled with ice, just for the 'kaboom!' effect due to hydrostatic shock.

And it does prove my point - 5-10yards out, a shotgun is a good home defense weapon, unlikely to kill innocent bystanders next door, but very likely to make mince meat of the intruder and a bit easier to aim than a rifle or pistol...
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  #31  
Old 07-30-2008, 10:37 AM
GomiBoy GomiBoy is offline
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Brilliant quote:
Quote:
Originally Posted by http://www.theboxotruth.com/docs/bot1_2.htm
Lessons learned:
1. Sheetrock (drywall) doesn't slow any round down much. If you shoot in the house, walls will not stop any serious round.

2. Twelve pine boards will not stop a .223 round.

3. Shooting stuff is fun.
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  #32  
Old 07-30-2008, 07:00 PM
ExTank ExTank is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GomiBoy
105/120mm smoothbore cannons on the M1 Abrams uses a fin-stabilized sabot for just this reason. The sabot puts a HUGE amount of velocity into the smaller-than-bore round, but velocity is useless if it's horribly inaccurate as you pointed out. I think some shotgun flechettes, as well as some sabots, have tiny metal fins to help with this... but I can't imagine they're cheap or easy to get as I can't imagine any civilian usage...
[Pedantic Ass Mode:]

That's called a "sub-caliber munition."

[/Pedantic Ass Mode]
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  #33  
Old 07-30-2008, 09:25 PM
enipla enipla is offline
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Well this is why we are here.

IMHO.

A short barrel shotgun is a good home defense weapon, but donít count on it magically hitting the target.

I suspect it is a very good weapon for suppressive fire though at longer distances (perhaps 20-30 yards). Once the cone does spread a bit (doesnít really happen in the distances typically needed for home defense) That could be very useful for suppressive fire.

Or if you know you have a lot of enemies crowded in one position.

WWI was one of the first common uses of a shotgun in warfare. The trench sweeper.
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  #34  
Old 07-30-2008, 09:40 PM
Harry1945 Harry1945 is offline
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Back during the Anti-Vietnam War protests, we were taught to use #9 shot and fire at the street in front of the demonstrators to spread the pattern more effectively. That situation never actually occurred, as far as I know, so I'm happy to say I have no idea how effective it would be.
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  #35  
Old 07-30-2008, 10:12 PM
carnivorousplant carnivorousplant is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by enipla
A short barrel shotgun is a good home defense weapon, but donít count on it magically hitting the target.
I thought of putting a short barrel, pistol grip and folding stock on the 12 gauge I bought at a pawn shop. It occurred to me should I actually have to shoot an intruder in my house, I'd much rather the cops found me with a duck gun than some sexy looking SWAT shotgun.
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Old 07-30-2008, 10:30 PM
silenus silenus is offline
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Smart move. That's why I've given a special name to my primary home defense weapon (S&W Model 28 .357). If I ever have the misfortune of having to cap some hostile miscreant, I want to be able to say, when being questioned by some lawyer, if I named my pistol (he's hoping I named it "Killer" or something like that, so he can paint me out to a jury like a crazed gun nut), I can honestly answer "Fluffy."
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  #37  
Old 07-31-2008, 04:09 AM
GomiBoy GomiBoy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ExTank
[Pedantic Ass Mode:]

That's called a "sub-caliber munition."

[/Pedantic Ass Mode]
Thanks for that. I thought smaller-than-bore would be more descriptive, though, for the non-military amongst us
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  #38  
Old 07-31-2008, 05:00 AM
Radegast Radegast is offline
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Choice of #4 Shot Quite Chilling

I find the fact that the shooter chose #4 shot to be quite chilling. It may have been an accident, but according to some research I did on this subject some time ago, #4 shot is about optimal for doing a lot of damage in an interior setting. The pellets are large enough to carry enough energy to be lethal at most likely interior distances, and the pellet count in an ounce or an ounce and an eighth load is still high enough to put out a lot of shot, giving a pretty nice deadly pattern. If I hear that he was using a skeet gun with a super-improved cylinder choking -- which causes the pattern to spread out quickly at comparatively short range -- I would say that he planned this to do as much harm as possible.
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  #39  
Old 07-31-2008, 07:15 AM
Lanzy Lanzy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GomiBoy
You're right on about a shotgun being ideal for home defense. Higher caliber rifles, including the humble .22, have an ultimate range of a mile or more. A shotgun is an ideal home defense weapon because the shot dissipates quickly, as well as accuracy at short range - you only have to basically point in their general direction and the shot cone does the rest. Fire a shotgun (with other than slugs in it) at a normal solid-core door or wall, i.e. in a home defense situation where you're shooting at someone in your house, and it's unlikely for the shot you missed to go through the walls and especially unlikely to hurt someone next door, but will very handily mess up whoever has broken in. A pistol, or even more a high caliber rifle, will potentially go through the person, through the wall, into the next wall, and kill someone on the far side.

It's also why they are the weapon of choice for riot police. You can fire rubber-, sandbag-, or even rock salt-loaded 12 gauge rounds, but even if you load for bear, you'll knock down the first line of rioters but won't kill granny in her flat down the street, which is kinda what you want if you're a cop.

Think about this - Cheney shot his lawyer from about 30 yards away with light bird shot from a 12 gauge. Birdshot is designed to disperse in a 'cone' pattern and spread out to kill a bird in flight (or smash a clay pigeon) if you can catch the bird with part of that cone; the cone does mean that the shot is pretty far and wide apart, though. The Lawyer didn't die, in spite of being shot basically in the face - I think he only caught 5 or 10 pieces of shot out of about 150 fired. It's all about the type of shell as described above. I'd bet the nutjob in the church had buckshot in his gun, so his effective range for lethal damage was about 50 yards, which in a full medium-sized church is pretty much everybody but the choir and the minister.
I seem to remember Cheney used a 28 gage shotgun. I remember because I have never used one and had to look up the specs on it.
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  #40  
Old 07-31-2008, 07:30 AM
Don't Call Me Shirley Don't Call Me Shirley is offline
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My home defense choice is a 40 caliber handgun with hollow point 155 grain rounds. My thinking is that an exterior wall is going to break the bullet up into pieces that would be unlikely to penetrate a neighbors exterior wall and still have enough energy to do any damage. Is that wrong?
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  #41  
Old 07-31-2008, 09:05 AM
GomiBoy GomiBoy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Don't Call Me Shirley
My home defense choice is a 40 caliber handgun with hollow point 155 grain rounds. My thinking is that an exterior wall is going to break the bullet up into pieces that would be unlikely to penetrate a neighbors exterior wall and still have enough energy to do any damage. Is that wrong?
Not very good, no. The hollowpoint fills up with plaster from the sheetrock, but penetrates nicely through it and further through several layers of 3/8" plywood as well. You're likely to have rounds passing through the house and out the other side and potentially hurting people there.

The .40 is somewhere between a 9mm and a 45acp in power, size, and muzzle velocity.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lanzy
I seem to remember Cheney used a 28 gage shotgun
Cite? Not being snarky, I've just never heard of a 28-gauge shotgun. 20, 12, 10, and .410 sure, just not 28 gauge. So would be curious in having my ignorance fought.
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  #42  
Old 07-31-2008, 09:32 AM
The Man In Black The Man In Black is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GomiBoy


Cite? Not being snarky, I've just never heard of a 28-gauge shotgun. 20, 12, 10, and .410 sure, just not 28 gauge. So would be curious in having my ignorance fought.

28 gauge shotgun: http://www.ableammo.com/catalog/prod...ducts_id=84424
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  #43  
Old 07-31-2008, 09:33 AM
Max Torque Max Torque is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GomiBoy
Cite? Not being snarky, I've just never heard of a 28-gauge shotgun. 20, 12, 10, and .410 sure, just not 28 gauge. So would be curious in having my ignorance fought.
Yeah, they exist, but they're not super-common. According to this CNN story, "[Katherine] Armstrong [owner of the ranch on which they were hunting,] said Cheney was firing a 28-gauge shotgun, a small-bore weapon commonly used for hunting birds." A 28 gauge shotgun has a bore diameter of 0.55 inches, quite a bit smaller than the 0.729 for a standard 12 gauge, but still larger than a .410.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Don't Call Me Shirley
My home defense choice is a 40 caliber handgun with hollow point 155 grain rounds. My thinking is that an exterior wall is going to break the bullet up into pieces that would be unlikely to penetrate a neighbors exterior wall and still have enough energy to do any damage. Is that wrong?
Depends on the walls, really. Sheetrock is no problem for most bullets. My exterior walls are brick, which I would think would do an excellent job at stopping even a rifle cartridge. If yours are wood, sticks, snow, grass, or straw, the bullet could sail right through with ease. And of course, if your stray shot hits a window, it'll go a great deal farther (has the guy with the box ever tested birdshot through glass?).
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Old 07-31-2008, 09:41 AM
GomiBoy GomiBoy is offline
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The Man In Black and Max Torque - ignorance fought! Thanks much.
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Old 07-31-2008, 10:07 AM
Don't Call Me Shirley Don't Call Me Shirley is offline
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Quote:
Depends on the walls, really. Sheetrock is no problem for most bullets. My exterior walls are brick, which I would think would do an excellent job at stopping even a rifle cartridge. If yours are wood, sticks, snow, grass, or straw, the bullet could sail right through with ease. And of course, if your stray shot hits a window, it'll go a great deal farther (has the guy with the box ever tested birdshot through glass?).
Of course bullets can go through sheetrock and wood, and the guy with the box does a good job of testing and all that, but it's not a real life situation. A bullet fired into a box that hits the wood at a 90 degree angle is well and good, but in real life the bullet is probably going to hit at something other than 90 degrees, which will unbalance it, rip the jacket off, and tear it apart. This goes double (or triple) for hollow points. Does the guy at Box O' Truth test hollow points?
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Old 07-31-2008, 03:32 PM
puppygod puppygod is offline
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I seem to recall some SWAT unit that did their own penetration tests with different types of weapons, ammo and walls. To their surprise, they found that 9mm or shotgun slug had actually better chances of penetrating hard wall than .223. Heavier, solid but short bullet punched through without loosing much energy, but long, slim rifle bullet tended to break into fragments, loose jacket and overall quickly dissipate it's energy. On the other hand, with softer wall materials effect was inverted and 9mm penetrated them less... My memories are hazy and I can't find the cite, but iirc they found that out of their arsenal shotgun slugs had most chances of overpenetration, with 9mm and buckshot much less, and .223 depending on the wall hardness - with overpenetration risk being negligible for brick or rock, but substantial for wood or drywall.
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Old 07-31-2008, 07:54 PM
BF BF is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GomiBoy

Cite? Not being snarky, I've just never heard of a 28-gauge shotgun. 20, 12, 10, and .410 sure, just not 28 gauge. So would be curious in having my ignorance fought.
The four guns used in most skeet competitions are 12, 20, 28 and 410. 28 and 410 are considered experts guns, and are favored by skilled hunters for dove, quail and grouse. As noted from a previous post, Cheney was using a 28 guage. If it was a 12, there was a very good possibility that he would have killed his hunting partner. A 12 gauge round loaded with 7.5 shot contains about 300 pellets, a 410 about 90.
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Old 07-31-2008, 08:13 PM
Fubaya Fubaya is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Radegast
If I hear that he was using a skeet gun with a super-improved cylinder choking -- which causes the pattern to spread out quickly at comparatively short range -- I would say that he planned this to do as much harm as possible.
The newspaper showed and identified the gun he used, but that was several days ago and I can't find it online. However, it was a semi auto shotgun and he fired three rounds and had to stop to reload. I'm not sure how common a semi auto is for skeet shooting. But my opinion is that he didn't plan it very well or he would have removed the plug so it would hold more than three shots.

Last edited by Fubaya; 07-31-2008 at 08:15 PM..
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Old 07-31-2008, 08:20 PM
carnivorousplant carnivorousplant is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BF
28 and 410 are considered experts guns, and are favored by skilled hunters for dove, quail and grouse.
One of Mrs. Plant's friends in New Hampshire used a .410 in skeet shooting. She said it was because she wasn't big enough to through a .12 gauge around all day. I should have been more impressed.
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Old 07-31-2008, 08:20 PM
BF BF is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fubaya
The newspaper showed and identified the gun he used, but that was several days ago and I can't find it online. However, it was a semi auto shotgun and he fired three rounds and had to stop to reload. I'm not sure how common a semi auto is for skeet shooting. But my opinion is that he didn't plan it very well or he would have removed the plug so it would hold more than three shots.
Very. I shoot trap competitively with an over/under. When I'm screwing around shooting skeet or sporting clays, it's my Beretta semi-auto all the way (which is also my bird gun). And yeah, if he didn't have the foresight to remove the plug (which would have given him 3-4 rounds in the magazine) then he wasn't very bright. But then again, we're talking about a whack-job who just killed some people in a church.
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