Which to add next?

This is a discussion on Which to add next? within the Defensive Rifles & Shotgun Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; I am set for my CC/OC gun which I trust my life with after hundreds of rounds and no malfunctions. I am looking for another ...

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Thread: Which to add next?

  1. #1
    Distinguished Member Array OhioCatter's Avatar
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    Which to add next?

    I am set for my CC/OC gun which I trust my life with after hundreds of rounds and no malfunctions.

    I am looking for another PD gun which could be used for home protection or protection on the move. First off, any type of AR or AK is going to be out of the question. I wish I could pick one up but it just isn't in the cards money wise. Here's where I am running into the problem, do I get a HD shotgun or do I pick up a Lever gun? I know most will say just use your carry gun for a HD gun but I have it in the back of my mind the possibility of my carry gun going down. All guns can have a catastrophic failure no matter who makes it.

    I live in a well populated neighborhood and actually live in a ranch duplex (problem #1) and have a neighbor just feet away with a new baby. My mind tells me off the bat that a HD shotgun is what I need in this situation. I'm sure most would agree with my reasoning on the HD shotgun in this situation. On the other hand my mind still says that maybe a Lever gun is the way to go instead. My reasoning for this is if we ever had to evacuate and leave our home for any reason (SHTF) the Lever gun would give me more of an ability to defend ourselves at longer distances. Am I along the right lines here or have I lost sight of what is in front of me?

    Handgun/HD shotgun . My hand gun is my carry gun and can double as my HD gun as well. If my hand gun goes down the HD shotgun comes into play for the house and close quarter combat outside of the house.

    Handgun/Lever gun. My handgun is my carry gun and can double as my HD gun as well. The Lever gun could be used as my HD gun (last resort due to penetration issue) if my handgun goes down. The Lever gun I think could be used in close quarter combat and be effective for longer range engagement if needed as well.

    So which do you think makes more sense, the HD shotgun or the Lever gun? Feel free to share your thoughts good or bad and throw in anything that I missed. No matter which I decide my main goal is to hide and stay away from having to use them.

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  3. #2
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    Neither is a bad choice, but given your current parameters I'll steer you toward the shotgun. You'll gain versatility through the wide variety of loads you can run through it, plus replacement barrels are available for the common defense shotguns if you need. The shotgun might be a little cheaper up front, as well.

    In the 'evacuation' scenario, don't discount the effectiveness of the shotgun with buckshot or slugs to keep BGs at a safe distance. With practice and some kind of sights (not just a bead) you'll have as much deterrent and possibly food-gathering equipment as you'll likely need.

    With the shotguns, you have a pretty good array to choose from, with the Remington 870 and Mossberg 500 (and variants) being the prime choices. If I was buying a shotgun today for mainly defensive purposes, I'd be looking at the police/military versions, as they're built with somewhat better parts and subjected to more quality checks than the Wal-Mart specials. One attractive option is to find a used 870 and send it off to Wilson (Scattergun Technologies) for their "Remington Steal" makeover. Add in an extended mag tube and sights (if necessary), and you've got a super-reliable gun for less than a new 870 Police model.
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  4. #3
    Member Array warbirds's Avatar
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    I would pass on the lever gun.

    A shotgun is a proven home defense/close quarters weapon.

    A lever gun even "only" in 357 mag is coming out smoking fast and would be very likely to defeat your duplex walls. If you did a lever gun in 44 magnum or just about any legit rifle caliber it may defeat your duplex walls even after hitting and passing through your bad guy.

    I would go 12 gauge no larger than #4 shot (probably #6 due to the neighbor) and keep some slugs and 00 buck around for our evacuation scenario.

    Of course if home defense is the concern, exterior lights, a good dog, and a home alarm all have merit to deter a bad guy.
    My home is well defended but these deterrents are a larger part of how to really protect the home/family.
    It is very unlikely that you would be in an evacuation scenario and be involved in a firefight outside of 12 gauge range.

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    VIP Member Array 10thmtn's Avatar
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    Anything that will penetrate to the vitals on a BG will go through multiple interior walls. Certain 5.56 loads will tumble and fragment when hitting walls, but that is not guaranteed. Still, if you want to go that route, you may be able to get a SU 16 rifle, or maybe a pump rifle in your price range.

    Other option is a double shotgun, loaded with wax slugs (search YouTube).
    maxwell97 likes this.
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    Member Array kmjjack's Avatar
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    I think warbirds and gasmitty have nailed it. I recently purchased an 870 Express used that came with 2 barrels. I paid $300, which I think is reasonable, but A- they certainly can be had for less and B- I do think there are higher quality variants. But, I'm happy / satisfied with what I got. It's primary function will be home defense.

  7. #6
    Distinguished Member Array OhioCatter's Avatar
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    Thanks for the advice folks. I never thought about slugs for outside defense if it ever came to that, I knew I would miss something with this.

    I had a couple of guns lined up in each group and my price range that I could go with. I think you are right about the HD shotgun. So the Marlin 336 @ $369.00 is off the list. As far as military grade shotguns I did shoulder a Mossberg 590A1 but the LOP seemed long to me, it just didn't shoulder very smooth at all. I also shouldered a Mossberg Flex with a HD barrel and it felt easier and more comfortable to control than the 590A1. Last but not least I got to handle a Weatherby 459 TR which felt the best in my hands but I have not had any dealings with them so i'm not sure about the 459.

    Well i'm headed out to LGS #4 (and the last one) and see what they have in my budget

  8. #7
    Member Array Drgnfly's Avatar
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    I would save for a little while myself. You can buy an AR for a little more than you are looking to spend on a shotgun.. and it will be a better HD weapon than the shotgun and pistol.

    16'' M4 CMV Chrome-Lined Premium Rifle Kit - Rifle Kits - AR-15

    Grab a blemish lower for $75. Or even look into a used AR.

    Just my .02
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  9. #8
    VIP Member Array maxwell97's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 10thmtn View Post
    Anything that will penetrate to the vitals on a BG will go through multiple interior walls. Certain 5.56 loads will tumble and fragment when hitting walls, but that is not guaranteed. Still, if you want to go that route, you may be able to get a SU 16 rifle, or maybe a pump rifle in your price range.

    Other option is a double shotgun, loaded with wax slugs (search YouTube).
    Good point. Heavy buckshot can penetrate walls pretty well. Careful ammo selection is important.
    "Yet this government never of itself furthered any enterprise, but by the alacrity with which it got out of the way... The character inherent in the American people has done all that has been accomplished; and it would have done somewhat more, if the government had not sometimes got in its way."

  10. #9
    Distinguished Member Array OhioCatter's Avatar
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    Ok I narrowed it down to 4 HD shotguns. Here they are.

    Mossberg Flex w/ 20" barrel, regular stock, and bead front sight. Fixed choke ($477.00)

    Mossberg 535 Tactical w/6 position stock, pistol grip and side saddle, ghost ring aperture on rear with an orange blade sight in front. Not sure of barrel length 18 1/2-20". Fixed choke ($499.00)

    Benelli SuperNova Tactical with pistol grip and Ghost-ring sights and 18 1/2" barrel. Fixed choke ($499.00)

    Weatherby PA-459 TR, Regular stock with pistol grip, ghost-ring sights, 18 1/2" barrel with extended ported cylinder choke. Rem chokes are supposed to be compatible with this gun which means more choke options besides cylinder. ($389.00)

    Out of all of the HD shotguns that I held I found the Weatherby to be the most natural to shoulder and point. On the other hand though, the Weatherby seemed to be the lightest of the 4 so I may feel a little more recoil while I practice but in an emergency I would probably never notice. I would have to give the second best feel to the Benelli and then the Mossbergs would come into play. I'm leaning more towards the Weatherby or the Benelli to be honest. I know no one can make this decision for me but I would still like to hear some thoughts from you the experts.

  11. #10
    VIP Member Array 40Bob's Avatar
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    If you go with a shotgun, DO NOT use bird shot for SD. Use only 00 buck and or slugs.

    My preference is the carbine for an all around long gun, that is based on 30 years of being at the pointy end of the stick. That being said, if I was at bad breath distance and it was somebody that I absolutely had to STOP it would be a 12 gauge slug.
    My rifle and pistol are tools, I am the weapon. Go big or stay on the porch.

  12. #11
    Member Array nickndfl's Avatar
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    This would work and it also has a low failure rate.

  13. #12
    Member Array RockingGlock32's Avatar
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    You could always pick up a lower reciever for an AR and build one as time goes on building one to the exavt specifications you want will be cheaper in the long run. Yiu could probably build a decent AR for around $600.if you get yhe right deals.

  14. #13
    VIP Member Array ghost tracker's Avatar
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    IMHO, shotgun is a higher priority than lever gun.
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  15. #14
    Senior Member Array zamboni's Avatar
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    Since you looking for HSD Id suggest a 12g or maybe a 20g shotgun. Pump or semi ? tough call, they both have their advantages & disadvantages. Checkout the feel of a youth model too as they are easier to maneuver with in tight quarters.

    Hey Uncle Joe may be on too something: "Buy ah shotgun"

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    Good Luck in your search

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