Pennsylvania Firearm Owners Association
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  1. #1
    Join Date
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    (Philadelphia County)
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    Question .410 as a home defense shotgun

    I searched the forums and the .410 threads didn't really answer my question.

    Is the .410 a decent possible shotgun for use as a home defense tool?

    Here's the situation: A "friend" won't change to another caliber of shotgun. He's got a pistol grip .410 hes had since he lived in the hills. I've told him repeatedly that it only causes flesh wounds on humans. I convinced him to at least get some heavy buck, but that's it. He won't even go to a 20 gauge much less a 16 or 12 gauge - because his wife won't shoot it then, because she's little and the recoil is too much for her. I pointed out that his wife hates guns and won't shoot it any way, a point he disagrees with me on. That is a dead end, so I have to find some way to get the .410 to work for him. But he asked me to find the right kind of shell for his .410. I said 00 or 000 buck is the only possibility, but even then, its still underpowered.

    Am I wrong about this? Is there a decent defense load for the .410, or should I lobby harder for him to ramp up to a bigger gun? To me the .410 is a bird gun, great for pesky blue jays and nasty little rattlesnakes....but fkin' useless against your average crackhead here in the city.

    Input! I demand it!
    NEED should never enter into a discussion about RIGHTS

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    Drexel Hill, Pennsylvania
    (Delaware County)
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    Default Re: .410 as a home defense shotgun

    At real close range it is better than you would suspect. Try a hunting load of 4s or 5s. Just remember that you are "only" producing a charge of 1/2 or 5/8 ounce of projectile at 1100 FPS. In a house, room or hallway, the distance will not allow for much spread of the pattern.

    Good luck with your friend and his spouse.

    Best regards,
    chalmitch
    "If you believe the term "militia" means the National Guard then you must believe that freedom of speech is reserved for the Government Printing Office." - Some guy, 2/2007

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
    (Allegheny County)
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    Default Re: .410 as a home defense shotgun

    Mossberg markets a .410-bore shotgun for "home security", so I imagine that it would be okay at least under some conditions. Loaded with a slug or the largest compatible buckshot, it should still be deadly at close range, where the projectiles haven't spread out much.

    Personally, I would probably go with at least a 20-gauge shotgun though.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
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    Chambersburg, Pennsylvania
    (Franklin County)
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    Default Re: .410 as a home defense shotgun

    There's not a whole lot of projectiles going out of a .410 gauge. I'd think if nothing else, stepping up to a 12 gauge would be worth it just for the increase in projectiles.

    A 2 3/4" .410 load of 000 buck only contains 3 projectiles. 00 might be even less.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Forks Township, Pennsylvania
    (Northampton County)
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    Default Re: .410 as a home defense shotgun

    I have a nice little .410 double barrel with the two triggers you can pull simultaneousy. I think it's a good home defense weapon - especially if you put a slug on one side and buckshot in the other. And it is short, light, manueverable.

    But a pistol back-up is a nice option. I wouldn't want to try to split and reload the .410... Thise first two blasts better do the job or the pistol is being used!

  6. #6
    Join Date
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    Pocono`s, Pennsylvania
    (Monroe County)
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    Default Re: .410 as a home defense shotgun

    Cheap HD. Mossberg Model 500 Special Purpose $279 to $299.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
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    Harrisubrg, Pennsylvania
    (Dauphin County)
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    Default Re: .410 as a home defense shotgun

    any gun is better than no gun.... but i would go with at least a 20ga....

  8. #8
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    Jan 2008
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    noneville, Massachusetts
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    Default Re: .410 as a home defense shotgun

    firing a shotgun from the hip/pistol grip doesnt nearly give the shooter the same "punch" it does when your shoulder is accepting the recoil, something to consider.

  9. #9
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    Apr 2008
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    UBE, Pennsylvania
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    Default Re: .410 as a home defense shotgun

    I don't see why a .410 would'nt be ok. However a .20ga is much better. My wife is a small woman too and she has no problem with the Mossy 500 loaded with a reduced recoil Federal PD load. She is by no means an avid shooter but can and will take action if she has to. She also feels and knows that the more fire power the better and trusts that I won't let her shoot anything I knew she could'nt handle. After all the biggest gun is useless if you can't place your rounds on your target!
    I'm not mean. I'm realistic.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    Picture Rocks, Pennsylvania
    (Lycoming County)
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    Default Re: .410 as a home defense shotgun

    Quote from:Ammo for self defense

    ".410 Gauge

    None of the above really applies in this weak caliber. The .410 is only a half-way decent manstopper with slugs. Choose the Federal Classic (F412RS) or Winchester Super-X (X41RS5) 1/5 ounce (88 grain) hollowpoint slug. Never use birdshot. American Derringer Corp. has produced an odd buckshot load for the .410 (withthree 000 pellets), and I advise you to ignore it. Lose the .410 and buy a 20 gauge pump shotgun."

    I cannot personally vouch for the author, but his references to other experts seem to be in line. Take it for what it's worth.
    I think the founding fathers meant exactly what they wrote: the government should not make any laws restricting the RIGHT of the people to 'hold or retain in one's possession' and 'hold or carry' guns and other weapons that would allow them to keep their government in line.

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