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Old 07-24-2010, 04:39 PM   #1
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Default AR-15 for home SD? or 12gauge?

I brought this up in my build thread, but it probably deserves a little more attention. My first firearm was a 12gauge shotgun. It is still my go-to if a BG breaks into my house and I have time to get to my safe (otherwise it is whatever handgun I have on me at the time).

I just finished my AR and in order for it to fit in my safe, I've had to separate the upper and lower and the mag is also separate. So 3 parts to assemble. It would take no more than 30 seconds.

But, if I wanted to, I could put the complete AR in the safe, all set up, ready to go.

What is better in the home for SD? 12-gauge (I use 00-Buck) or .223 (I use 77gr Hornady TAP FTP)?



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Old 07-24-2010, 05:30 PM   #2
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It's going to be impossible to suggest which is better for home defense for YOU since I don't know if you have others in the house, how thick/heavy your walls are, whether you live in the city, country, mobile home, or an apartment. There's been countless studies conducted about which will do the job without excessive penetration. The AR comes out with more favorable results than one would think.

Personally I live in an old farmhouse in the country and have a shotgun loaded with the first 2-3 loads with #4 turkey loads, with the rest being#1 or 00 buckshot. I figure if the situation hasn't resolved itself within the 1st 2-3 shots I'll need the penetration of the buckshot.



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Old 07-24-2010, 07:01 PM   #3
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I had this discussion a year or so ago with a few old timers at the local gun shop/range. The thing I remember most was one gentalman mentioned he used a .410 for home defense. I dont recall the type of ammo he used. A .410 would cure most problems in HD, it seems.

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Old 07-24-2010, 08:26 PM   #4
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I know the pat answer to questions of this type is, "It depends." I have decided that 00-Buck is just fine for my surroundings/construction/family. I suppose my question is on-target effectiveness between a well-placed .223 round and a well-placed set of 9 pellets from a 00-buck shell.

The exterior walls (without counting the studs) is 1 sheetrock, two 3/4" sheets of ply, 1/2" of wood siding. That would pretty much take the steam out of most rounds so passersby isn't really a concern. It is not like I'm talking about using a bolt rifle with 30-'06.

One wrinkle that could matter is that my home's layout is such that I could have a length of shot of up to 50 feet.

I'm basically talking about the physical effect of a well-placed round on a BG. Now, since psychological effect is at least as important as shot-placement, I'm thinking the shotgun almost has no match. A BG hit by a shotgun blast is much more likely, I would guess, to drop to the floor than one hit by a .223 shot (all else being equal).

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Old 07-24-2010, 08:49 PM   #5
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Well since you also list a 9mm in your signature I'd add it into the mix too. And if it's a quality firearm I'd be inclined to choose that with the proper defensive loads. It can be awkward in a home possibly juggling a gun, flashlight and cell phone so a short barrel can be a big advantage - and firing with one arm.

I keep my Hi-Power handy at all times.

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Old 07-24-2010, 09:32 PM   #6
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If it was my choice between the .223 or the 12 guage, I would chose the 12 guage with number 6 shot or smaller. 00 buck would go through walls and possible endanger anyone who is in the house.

That said, always carry the shotgun pointed down because if the bad guy tries to take it away from you, you can always pull the trigger and take off a limb or put the shotgun into play in a very short time. Please remain low when entering a door way or hall. Bad guys will not expect that. Ambush would be the best defense. Let them come find you.

My personal choice would be the 45 ACP. That round has a 80 percent stopping rate with any torso shot. I carry the 45 ACP cocked and locked and you don`t have to worry about a hollow point expanding because the 45 is big when it gets to the target. This is my opinion.

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Old 07-24-2010, 11:07 PM   #7
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this has been covered pretty well. you know the deal by now...you owe it to those around you who are within range: don't put them in harm's way.

12ga is the one-shot-stopper of choice at close range. if you're worried about bad guys out 100+ yards away and you have a clear shot, an ar might make sense. i'd never use one for close engagement unless its all i had.

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Old 07-25-2010, 02:36 AM   #8
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I was just under the conception that .223 isn't as penetrative as one would think. I still have the shottie at the front of my safe. The questions I see are usually handgun vs. shotgun. And if I were to go outside because a gang of mutants was forming to take over my neighborhood, the AR would be out in front with a sidearm and a shottie hanging behind me. But I'm only talking 'bout inside.



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