Originally Posted by negolien
I like the Shotgun for HD for the simple reason you can load it to minimize over penetration and for particular encounters. Any Handgun you use is going thru a few walls no doubt about it. Any Buckshot you use is going thru a few walls no doubt about it. You also are going to be jacked up making aiming problematic. The shotgun must be employed correctly in a HD situation also. You take up a position that defends a choke point , call 911 immediately while yelling you are armed and willing to use deadly force and racking the action chambering your 1st round of #8.
Do some google searches on Birdshot penetration. People can run their mouths all they want about buckshot but the tests don't lie. I saw an outstanding piece on one of the outdoor channel shows on penetration of shotgun ammo. Any buckshot is penetrating a minimum of two pieces of drywall or one complete wall. You hit someone at 7 yards or closer (the average distance of defense engagements) with some #8 and that's going to seriously hamper the bad guys determination to continue the attack. It's also going to stop the attack at least momentarily if not permanently. No one let me say that again NO ONE is going to take a 12 gauge blast without at least temporarily being stopped cold at such a close range. I stagger the loads also keeping my Shotty "Cruiser Ready" or empty chamber, safety off tube full with 1 round of #8, 3 rounds of 000 and finally a slug. the #8 is also a good trap/skeet load imo.
Shotguns are great for defense and my 1st choice. I only go with the Handgun because of the inability to carry a shotgun for defense wherever you go lol. Below is a link to one of my favorite Birdshot myth busting videos.
Racking that shotgun will also give away your position, remember that the invader (or group of home invaders) will most likely be armed as well.
And #8 bird shot while good for manual of arms practice should not be used as a home defense round due to the lack of mass of said pellet size.
#4 Buckshot (not birdshot) is a very good option as an in home defensive load due to the mass of said pellet size and the reduced chance of over penetration (Notice I said reduced chance of over penetration) if you intend to keep a shotgun for home defense and wish to keep it ready for action. have it stored where only you and other trusted members of the household know where it is (as well as it's condition of readiness) . Keep a round in the chamber safety on with extra ammo ( of the same type) stored either with it or on it. Then all you need to do is slip a few rounds into the magazine tube and flick the safety off, or if a shot is needed very fast you can single load it (which requires practice)