Best HD 12 gauge load IYO?

Best HD 12 gauge load IYO?

This is a discussion on Best HD 12 gauge load IYO? within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; What's the best home defense 12 gauge load in your opinion? (Brands, "weight", loads, etc)...

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Thread: Best HD 12 gauge load IYO?

  1. #1
    Member Array Mercalf's Avatar
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    Best HD 12 gauge load IYO?

    What's the best home defense 12 gauge load in your opinion? (Brands, "weight", loads, etc)
    Some people don't deserve saving.

    ....the water is almost at a boil


  2. #2
    Senior Member Array Cap'n's Avatar
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    I'm a big fan of the Hornady Tap 12ga. 00 buck FPD (for personal defense). test have shown that they hold a very tight pattern.
    Welcome to Tennessee, the patron state of shootin' stuff.--SHOOTER

  3. #3
    Senior Member Array Pete Zaria's Avatar
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    If over penetration and damage to the house if you miss aren't a concern...
    The hottest .00 buck load your shoulder will take. For me that's a 3" Federal .00 buck load. The 3.5" shells are more than necessary and don't feel very good on your shoulder either.

    From my rough math these should throw off around 4,000 ft-lb of energy... No more need be said.

    If over-penetration is an issue, I'd consider #4 buck or some real heavy turkey loads.

    Frankly, arguing over 12 gauge loads for self defense is kind of ironic. Any modern 12 gauge load intended for hunting or personal defense WILL do the job - IMHO you're just asking which will make the biggest mess.

    Try a few .00 buck loads, see what feels good to shoot repeatedly, maybe test them out on some melons. Or an old TV. Stop worrying about it :)

    Peace,
    Pete Zaria.
    Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.
    - Margaret Mead


    "Booger Hook Off the Bang Switch" - unknown

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    Senior Member Array f8lranger4x4's Avatar
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    00buck

  5. #5
    Member Array Mercalf's Avatar
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    Thanks. Yes I have to worry about over penetration because of the other rooms in the house. The shot will not penetrate my walls, but the other rooms is a concern.

    Agreed that any 12 gauge load will do the job, I just like doing the job right with no concern or question. I've heard #4 from a few others as well.

    Cap'n has a point with the Hornady loads though. Especially if they hold a tight pattern, (main selling point of any ammunition tbh). Thanks,

    -Mercalf.
    Some people don't deserve saving.

    ....the water is almost at a boil

  6. #6
    VIP Member Array matiki's Avatar
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    I'm loaded with these:

    MidwayUSA - Winchester WinLite Low Recoil Ammunition 12 Gauge 2-3/4" 00 Buckshot 9 Pellets Box of 5

    And carry these on the stock:

    MidwayUSA - Winchester WinLite Low Recoil Ammunition 12 Gauge 2-3/4" 1 oz Rifled Slug Box of 5

    A few years ago a friend bought some, we also had a bunch of misc. stuff laying around, and we tested it on a couple pieces of wall (2x4's + 5/8" drywall & insulation) we tore out of his house to expand a room.

    Everything that said "buckshot" went right through both walls.

    I gave up on reducing penetration and decided to concentrate on recoil management.
    "Wise people learn when they can; fools learn when they must." - The Duke of Wellington

  7. #7
    Distinguished Member Array sniper58's Avatar
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    Mercalf.....if you can handle 40 rounds of .300 Weatherby Magnum's in 50 minutes, you can handle 00 buckshot!
    Tim
    BE PREPARED - Noah didn't build the Ark when it was raining!
    Si vis pacem, para bellum
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    VIP Member Array semperfi.45's Avatar
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    I think the new gold standard for shotgun amunition is Federal FliteControl . I tried the reduced recoil 9 pellet 00 and it is now in all of our department shotguns and my HD shotgun.
    Training means learning the rules. Experience means learning the exceptions.

  9. #9
    VIP Member Array aus71383's Avatar
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    I got a good deal on some Winchester Ranger Low Recoil 00 Buck at a gun show. Also got some Low Recoil 1oz. slugs at the same time. They both work - I'm not too concerned about shot pattern at 25 yards, so it really doesn't matter all that much to me. Most likely if anyone is using the shotgun it'll be my wife and it will be across the room distances. Just my $0.02

    Austin

  10. #10
    Senior Member Array Ragin Cajun's Avatar
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    If you are worried about penetration, use a # 5 or 6 turkey load. Smaller pellets will not penetrate as much and a turkey load from the distance that you would shoot inside your home will do the job.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Array jualdeaux's Avatar
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    I tested a few types of OO buck when I got my benelli. I found that the low recoil OO buck had the tightest patterns. So, because of that my HD shotty is loaded with Hornady TAP LE low recoil. I figure that at the distances I have in my home, the low recoil stuff will be just fine. No need for full power loads when the max range is 15 yards or less.

    The hornady TAP FPD had the worst pattern. There were holes scattered all over the target.

  12. #12
    VIP Member Array AZ Husker's Avatar
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    We did extensive testing of home defense 12 gauge rounds. For typical inside the house ranges, #4 Buckshot gave some extra spread, many more pellets, and plenty of penetration into gel, but less through wall material.
    Treat me good, I'll treat you better. Treat me bad, I'll treat you worse.

  13. #13
    Member Array Mercalf's Avatar
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    Thanks, everyone for your input.

    Handgun ammunition penetration, stopping power, etc. is so widely available - yet does anyone have this information for 12 gauge loads? To put it simple, will turkey loads destroy the intruder enough to where they cannot grab their weapon and fire back afterwards? I know that 12 gauge is powerful..etc etc... But someone jacked up on whatever is out there may or may not feel the direct pain... Should I just load turkey/buckshot - followed by a slug?

    I like the sound of having very little penetration (not into destroying the house, nor shooting into another bedroom) - but can I 100% count on a turkey load to turn the lights out?
    Some people don't deserve saving.

    ....the water is almost at a boil

  14. #14
    Senior Member Array Pete Zaria's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mercalf View Post
    I like the sound of having very little penetration (not into destroying the house, nor shooting into another bedroom) - but can I 100% count on a turkey load to turn the lights out?
    One? Maybe. Two? Probably. Three? I'd bet money on it.
    Nobody is going to give you a definitive answer there - too many variables, not a lot of research gone into it, etc....
    But if you need assurance that you won't do much damage to anything on the other side of an interior wall, turkey loads are probably your best bet. You could look into frangible ammo but I think it's more or less a gimmick.

    Can you find a place (out in the woods...) where you can test some loads against wallboard and wetpack? That would probably be the best thing to do.

    Peace,
    Pete Zaria.
    Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.
    - Margaret Mead


    "Booger Hook Off the Bang Switch" - unknown

  15. #15
    Senior Member Array tegemu's Avatar
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    Primarily out of concern for overpenetration, my 870 is loaded with #4 Buckshot which should be more than enough for home defense. Besides, you get more balls than with 00.
    People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence in their behalf. - George Orwell

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