The shotgun for self-defense, 12 gauge vs 20 gauge buckshot

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Re: The shotgun for self-defense, 12 gauge vs 20 gauge bucks

Post by Doctorr Fabulous » Fri Apr 29, 2016 3:45 pm

gunsandrockets wrote:
Doctorr Fabulous wrote:
If that's so, and the 20 gauge is so much lighter, then how does it also get lower recoil?
Since the answer to your question is obvious, I have to assume your question is rhetorical.

I'm also confused since your rhetorical question assumes a statement about recoil that was never asserted.

My point is to challenge a shotgun paradox. The paradox of the preference for the 12 gauge which are then down loaded.
So puttimg similar recoil into a lighter gun would produce more recoil. That's a pretty big downside. Recoil is one of the primary reasons why low-recoil loads are suggested, the secondary being that lower velocity produces less spread.

The simple answer to the paradigm-challenge is availability, cost, and commonality. The 12ga is cheap, common, and does good enough, so people use it.
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Re: The shotgun for self-defense, 12 gauge vs 20 gauge bucks

Post by gunsandrockets » Fri Apr 29, 2016 3:57 pm

woodsghost wrote:
gunsandrockets wrote:
At the moment I'm leaning towards a 20 gauge loaded with #3 or #2 buckshot as hitting the sweet spot of recoil, pattern density, and pellet penetration.
I'd say go for it and then test it out while hunting. If possible, test it out while deer hunting. If you can't use that load while deer hunting, then it is too small a load and you need something different. But legal hunting loads are a good place to start, and you always need to then test the load on critters. That will give you an idea of "actual performance" rather than "theoretical performance." Plus it gives you some stress based training and rings out your gun somewhat.


[EDIT]

Looks like you are in SoCal? Use your load on pigs. They are better test mediums than deer. And taste delicious!!!!

Also, legal self-defense in California pretty much requires shotguns or an SKS. I know there are legal and semi-legal ways to deal with Cali laws, but a shotgun seems to be the safest bet I have seen.
The funny thing about Commiefornia is that even though the gun-control laws here are terrible and getting worse, the self-defense laws are fairly reasonable. I believe California was one of those states which never had a duty to retreat, as far back as its beginning in 1850.

I'm not a hunter. But even if I was the data I could reasonably collect from pig hunting relevant to the issue at hand would be badly anecdotal. It seems the online consensus from various hunting forums considers 20 gauge #2 or #3 buckshot perfectly adequate for deer or hog hunting within roughly 25 yards. It's funny how some states hunting regulations ban buckshot or conversely mandate it!
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Re: The shotgun for self-defense, 12 gauge vs 20 gauge bucks

Post by woodsghost » Fri Apr 29, 2016 6:13 pm

gunsandrockets wrote: The funny thing about Commiefornia is that even though the gun-control laws here are terrible and getting worse, the self-defense laws are fairly reasonable. I believe California was one of those states which never had a duty to retreat, as far back as its beginning in 1850.

I'm not a hunter. But even if I was the data I could reasonably collect from pig hunting relevant to the issue at hand would be badly anecdotal. It seems the online consensus from various hunting forums considers 20 gauge #2 or #3 buckshot perfectly adequate for deer or hog hunting within roughly 25 yards. It's funny how some states hunting regulations ban buckshot or conversely mandate it!
I do encourage people to get into hunting. Even if they just get 3-4 game animals in their lives. The stress induced is pretty great, at least for me, and I have discovered so many flaws in my shooting and reactions due to performance while hunting (and now I train to correct them). I would not say it is the only way to train, but I have found a combination of stressed based professional instruction and hunting animals to be very useful. There is a lot of synergy in the training/practice I am getting.

I have also found hunting to be very instructive in how things react to being shot. I had more of an understanding that people reacted like they do in the movies. I have discovered animals do NOT react that way, and likely, people will not either. Hunting really demystified things for me and has really shaped my choices of guns and calibers.

If hunting forums have led you to confidence in #2 or #3, then ok. I appreciate that you mention state laws don't always reflect what is "useful." I grew up in Iowa, where in almost all the counties, shotgun slugs are required for "gun season." While once this was an effort to allow deer populations to grow, it is now a means of limiting deer harvested to preserve state revenue from out-of-state hunters. Good point.
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Re: The shotgun for self-defense, 12 gauge vs 20 gauge bucks

Post by The Twizzler » Fri Apr 29, 2016 8:59 pm

Apples to Oranges. I said 2(3/4) inch 12ga and you say, but with a 3 inch 20ga it's almost as good. Okay, but I have still have more. I can go up to 3 in and then up again to 3(1/2) inch which will leave the 20 ga capacity in the dust. I don't because the (0) buck 12ga is right in the sweet spot, not to weak and not to strong. It's in the Goldilocks zone and that makes all the difference in the world.



gunsandrockets wrote:
The Twizzler wrote:The ones I used had 12 pellets. I didn't buy from Midway but this is what it looked like.

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Okay 12 pellets of 0 buckshot weighs about 588 grains.

A 3" 20 gauge buckshot load of 18 pellets of #2 buckshot should weigh about 528 grains. So a 20 gauge buckshot load can carry 90% as much payload as your preferred 12 gauge round. Doesn't seem like a significant difference to me.
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Re: The shotgun for self-defense, 12 gauge vs 20 gauge bucks

Post by gunsandrockets » Sun May 01, 2016 4:51 pm

The Twizzler wrote:Apples to Oranges. I said 2(3/4) inch 12ga and you say, but with a 3 inch 20ga it's almost as good. Okay, but I have still have more. I can go up to 3 in and then up again to 3(1/2) inch which will leave the 20 ga capacity in the dust. I don't because the (0) buck 12ga is right in the sweet spot, not to weak and not to strong. It's in the Goldilocks zone and that makes all the difference in the world.
Riiiight. Apples and Oranges? You just argued yourself into a big circle. The simple fact remains your preferred load is not significantly more powerful than what a common 20 gauge can fire.
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Re: The shotgun for self-defense, 12 gauge vs 20 gauge bucks

Post by The Twizzler » Sun May 01, 2016 5:45 pm

I don't think you understood my statement. I said that 12ga is always able to be more powerful than 20 ga. That if I choose to shoot 12 ga for home defense, this is the round I like because of experience (it's the best for me) which is the reason for my opinion. Get out there and shoot both and see what you think. I promise I won't tell you that you are wrong. :wink:
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Re: The shotgun for self-defense, 12 gauge vs 20 gauge bucks

Post by Chirpy » Tue May 03, 2016 2:53 pm

Doctorr Fabulous wrote:
gunsandrockets wrote:
Doctorr Fabulous wrote:The 12ga is cheap, common, and does good enough, so people use it.
This. 12ga is a LOT cheaper around here in Central Tejas.
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Re: The shotgun for self-defense, 12 gauge vs 20 gauge bucks

Post by BullOnParade » Tue May 03, 2016 5:59 pm

Don't mind me, just doing the obligatory cross post to The Milcop Defensive Shotgun (How we make it work) thread ...

The only viable reason I see for a shotgun in SD/HD, is for use of slugs when you're concerned attackers may be wearing body armour. I remember it being a regular occurrence a few years back, I'd imagine it's still happening. Otherwise, regular arguments against shotgun for SD/HD apply.
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Re: The shotgun for self-defense, 12 gauge vs 20 gauge bucks

Post by BullOnParade » Tue May 03, 2016 5:59 pm

Don't mind me, just doing the obligatory cross post to The Milcop Defensive Shotgun (How we make it work) thread ...

The only viable reason I see for a shotgun in SD/HD, is for use of slugs when you're concerned attackers may be wearing body armour. I remember it being a regular occurrence a few years back, I'd imagine it's still happening. Otherwise, regular arguments against shotgun for SD/HD apply.
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Re: The shotgun for self-defense, 12 gauge vs 20 gauge bucks

Post by The Twizzler » Tue May 03, 2016 9:28 pm

Not really, you're looking at spread outdoors. If you are using it for home defense the spread of buckshot is quite minimal. You can test this easily. Shoot a 12ga of double ought buck at cardboard from 15 feet away (an average room size). The spread wont be very much. Now I know you will say the slug penetrates more then buckshot, but if you are wearing (soft)body armor it means the buck and the slug both won't penetrate but what they will do is transfer a massive amount of kinetic energy. Just because it doesn't make a hole doesn't mean it wont break bone. Even if you don't die you are down for the count which makes a second shot like shooting monkey's in a barrel.

If they are wearing hard armor you were probably screwed anyways as the good stuff is designed to stop rifle bullets.



BullOnParade wrote:Don't mind me, just doing the obligatory cross post to The Milcop Defensive Shotgun (How we make it work) thread ...

The only viable reason I see for a shotgun in SD/HD, is for use of slugs when you're concerned attackers may be wearing body armour. I remember it being a regular occurrence a few years back, I'd imagine it's still happening. Otherwise, regular arguments against shotgun for SD/HD apply.
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Re: The shotgun for self-defense, 12 gauge vs 20 gauge bucks

Post by Doctorr Fabulous » Tue May 03, 2016 9:49 pm

Most slugs will go through soft armor like it's nothing. High velocity copper sabots will tear through level-III stuff too.
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Re: The shotgun for self-defense, 12 gauge vs 20 gauge bucks

Post by MacWa77ace » Wed May 04, 2016 10:54 am

Shotguns work best when utilizing shotgun techniques [not rifle techniques ported to the the shotgun] and are backed up by an AR wielded by the guy beside you.

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20g slugs kick pretty hard too. Set up with a semi-auto of either caliber and recoil absorbing buttstock to reduce felt recoil, nice RDS and a shell saddle on the receiver or stock, and a quick adjust tactical sling and light, extended mag, practice practice practice SG techniques and feeding the puppy, practice some more, then put it in the safe and use your AR.
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Re: The shotgun for self-defense, 12 gauge vs 20 gauge bucks

Post by gunsandrockets » Wed May 04, 2016 12:01 pm

I think some of you guys are commenting on the wrong thread. This isn't the 'shotguns suck and rifles rule' thread. This is the '20 gauge shotguns are better than 12 gauge shotguns' thread.
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Re: The shotgun for self-defense, 12 gauge vs 20 gauge bucks

Post by gunsandrockets » Wed May 04, 2016 12:17 pm

Chirpy wrote:
Doctorr Fabulous wrote:
gunsandrockets wrote:
Doctorr Fabulous wrote:The 12ga is cheap, common, and does good enough, so people use it.
This. 12ga is a LOT cheaper around here in Central Tejas.
From my own experience buckshot loads seem very difficult to find at retail level. Sure the standard 9 pellet 00 buckshot 12 gauge round is all over the place, but try to find anything different, even in 12 gauge. Weirdly enough the Federal .410 handgun 000 buckshot load isn't hard to find.

But for online sales, everything is equally available, and almost equally cheap. I see Winchester 20 gauge #3 buckshot for only $4.47 a box.

https://www.cheaperthandirt.net/product ... rom=Search
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Re: The shotgun for self-defense, 12 gauge vs 20 gauge bucks

Post by woodsghost » Wed May 04, 2016 12:28 pm

Doctorr Fabulous wrote:Most slugs will go through soft armor like it's nothing. High velocity copper sabots will tear through level-III stuff too.
Ummm, lvl III, or lvl IIIA? I can't imagine slugs go through the stuff meant for 556, etc. But I have been wrong before.
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Re: The shotgun for self-defense, 12 gauge vs 20 gauge bucks

Post by Doctorr Fabulous » Wed May 04, 2016 12:41 pm

gunsandrockets wrote:
Doctorr Fabulous wrote: From my own experience buckshot loads seem very difficult to find at retail level. Sure the standard 9 pellet 00 buckshot 12 gauge round is all over the place, but try to find anything different, even in 12 gauge. Weirdly enough the Federal .410 handgun 000 buckshot load isn't hard to find.

But for online sales, everything is equally available, and almost equally cheap. I see Winchester 20 gauge #3 buckshot for only $4.47 a box.

https://www.cheaperthandirt.net/product ... rom=Search

http://gunbot.net/ammo/shotgun/12ga/

Rio low-recoil 9-pellet 00 for $2.40 per box of 5, Federal Flite Control for $3.20/box when you buy a case, and Winchester Super X (buffered, not very controlled, but the same as the 20ga you linked) for $4.45/box for #1 16 pellet in bulk. Cheapiest of the cheap stuff is $4.40/10.

At best, you pay the same price for the same stuff, but still either get inferior pattern density or you get higher recoil with similar pattern density. With the 12ga you can step down to low recoil and still have 9 pellets, or up to 3 or 3.5" magnum and sling anything you can stuff in there. 20ga means a lighter gun, which means to sling the same number of pellets of the same size at the same speed, you get more recoil instead of less.
woodsghost wrote:
Doctorr Fabulous wrote:Most slugs will go through soft armor like it's nothing. High velocity copper sabots will tear through level-III stuff too.
Ummm, lvl III, or lvl IIIA? I can't imagine slugs go through the stuff meant for 556, etc. But I have been wrong before.
DDupleks sells a steel sabot that will defeat LVLIII, most sabots will defeat IIIA but soft lead slugs may not penetrate despite exceeding the 40mm backface deformation. AR500 might fare differently, but I remember the demo video Second Chance sent to AAC Back In The Day that featured a copper sabot eating a PAGST plate for breakfast but failing against their Lvl IV hybrid plate.

Still, if your opponent is wearing armor, your best bet is tactics, not bigger bullets.
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Re: The shotgun for self-defense, 12 gauge vs 20 gauge bucks

Post by BullOnParade » Wed May 04, 2016 4:14 pm

gunsandrockets wrote:I think some of you guys are commenting on the wrong thread. This isn't the 'shotguns suck and rifles rule' thread. This is the '20 gauge shotguns are better than 12 gauge shotguns' thread.
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Re: The shotgun for self-defense, 12 gauge vs 20 gauge bucks

Post by gunsandrockets » Wed May 04, 2016 4:16 pm

Doctorr Fabulous wrote: At best, you pay the same price for the same stuff, but still either get inferior pattern density or you get higher recoil with similar pattern density. With the 12ga you can step down to low recoil and still have 9 pellets, or up to 3 or 3.5" magnum and sling anything you can stuff in there. 20ga means a lighter gun, which means to sling the same number of pellets of the same size at the same speed, you get more recoil instead of less.
If recoil is an issue, weight can always be added to a lighter gun. In fact with all the gadgets and accessories which are so popular nowadays the problem is too much weight, not too little.

Using a 3.5" shell shotgun to fire low-recoil ammo has got to be one of the silliest things ever. All that excess weight and capacity, all for nothing.
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Re: The shotgun for self-defense, 12 gauge vs 20 gauge bucks

Post by Stercutus » Wed May 04, 2016 4:46 pm

I don't know of any shotgun slug that will penetrate Level IV ceramics. However, a hit or two and the plate will be severely compromised.


Still, if your opponent is wearing armor, your best bet is tactics, not bigger bullets.

Sums it right up.
BullOnParade wrote:
gunsandrockets wrote:I think some of you guys are commenting on the wrong thread. This isn't the 'shotguns suck and rifles rule' thread. This is the '20 gauge shotguns are better than 12 gauge shotguns' thread.
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Kind of digs at rifles in the first post making it a bit muddled.

20GA vs 12 GA?

The answer is yes. They both work. I don't see any great advantage to either unless you are hunting birds. 12 GA has more pellets. 8-)

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Re: The shotgun for self-defense, 12 gauge vs 20 gauge bucks

Post by RonnyRonin » Wed May 04, 2016 7:44 pm

gunsandrockets wrote: My point is to challenge a shotgun paradox. The paradox of the preference for the 12 gauge which are then down loaded.
I'll jump in with the disclaimer that I think shotguns are silly, so I don't research them much.

I will concede that down leaded 12g is perhaps silly, but are you arguing that a smartly-chosen 20g shell is better then a poorly-chosen 12g shell? Or do you suggest that equally well-chosen shells in each size will yield superior performance from the smaller shell?

To someone who doesn't really know shotguns this whole things sounds more like an argument to buy better 12g, not to switch to 20g.
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Re: The shotgun for self-defense, 12 gauge vs 20 gauge bucks

Post by woodsghost » Wed May 04, 2016 9:32 pm

Doctorr Fabulous wrote:
woodsghost wrote:
Doctorr Fabulous wrote:Most slugs will go through soft armor like it's nothing. High velocity copper sabots will tear through level-III stuff too.
Ummm, lvl III, or lvl IIIA? I can't imagine slugs go through the stuff meant for 556, etc. But I have been wrong before.
DDupleks sells a steel sabot that will defeat LVLIII, most sabots will defeat IIIA but soft lead slugs may not penetrate despite exceeding the 40mm backface deformation. AR500 might fare differently, but I remember the demo video Second Chance sent to AAC Back In The Day that featured a copper sabot eating a PAGST plate for breakfast but failing against their Lvl IV hybrid plate.

Still, if your opponent is wearing armor, your best bet is tactics, not bigger bullets.
Looks like it penetrates "4mm steel plates"

http://youtu.be/RffDzofRK8Y

Which is different from "level III armor plates." But still impressive. I wish we could get some there in the US :cry:

Thanks for giving the head's up! I had not heard of them. Which is not a surprise. I love learning new things.
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