12 Gauge Birdshot For Home Defense???





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Published on May 29, 2012

12 gauge birdshot is cheap, low recoil, and is available pretty much everywhere. Is it effective for home defense, compared to other options, or best utilized for target practice and hunting small game? Using common #8 birdshot, we'll fire a round into a ballistic gel block at 20 feet and look at the results. The key point I'm trying to illustrate is whether or not birdshot has the potential to produce sufficient penetration, in volume, that could stop a viable threat in the home setting. It has probably been used for this purpose more times than we wish to count, but with mixed results. We should understand that simply conveying to a threat the presence of a firearm can be a deterrent (a highly preferred outcome), but unfortunately this isn't always the case with an individual or group determined to commit bodily harm, or worse.

I'm using Winchester 2 3/4 shells, 1 1/8 oz. shot, 1200 fps. Product number is U128. Test gun is a Mossberg 590A1 Special Purpose with a 20" barrel.

There are references provided to buckshot and rifled slug tests that were previously posted on the channel, tested at a similar distance. I also plan a 10 foot test with birdshot at some point.


November 2011 00 buckshot test: http://youtu.be/dbFLY9OIqPA
January 2012 Foster Slug test: http://youtu.be/7HuVkXLreWE


Please understand that these techniques are merely representations to indicate possible ballistics; they are not intended to replicate real-world street results. There are just too many factors involved in a self-defense scenario to offer a 100% degree of accuracy when compared to street results. It is essential to perform exhaustive research on your carry choice, which could yield actual use data. The law-abiding citizen bears ultimate responsibility for their ammunition choice and insuring reliability in their firearm.

CAMERA: Sony HDR-CX560, 60p, 28 mbps, 1920 x 1080 HD.
EDITING: Sony Vegas Movie Studio HD Platinum 11, MP4, 30p, 16 mbps.

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