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Shotgun 12 vs 20 opinions..

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Shotgun 12 vs 20 opinions..

Old 03-22-2012, 11:41 AM
Typical Buck
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Default Shotgun 12 vs 20 opinions..

I am currently looking for a new pump action shotgun. I need a gun that my youngest son (not old enough to hunt yet) can use later on and also something that would be good for general home defense or camp defense. I found a couple of cheap black guns but i am having a hard time deciding on 12 ga vs 20 ga

I already have a Mossberg500 12ga and an 870 wingmaster in 16ga. both guns are way too long to be considered for Home defense or just just have around camp. I want to make sure i am not lowering the effectiveness of the 12 going with the 20. I also never owned a 20 so i am not sure if ammo like buckshot is available. Any opinions? is 20 ga enough?
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Old 03-22-2012, 09:33 PM
Nontypical Buck
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Location: Kansas
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Frankly, for home defense, a load of buckshot center mass from a 20ga is going to "deter" a bad guy just as well as a 12ga. Buckshot, slugs, shot, you name it, if it's available for 12ga, then it's available for 20ga.

I'm a fan of 12ga, and a BIG fan of the Benelli Supernova. The only downside of a 12ga is the size/length of the weapon, as it's very hard to find "youth model" 12ga's, because most youth models are 20ga.

It seems like you're all over the place right now. Do you want a weapon for home defense, or do you want a hunting weapon? Then further, do you want an upland shotgun, a turkey gun, goose-gun, deer slugger, etc etc? Sure, indy cars, stock cars, funny cars, and drag racers are all "race cars", but they all have very specific purposes. I have 5 Benelli Supernova 12ga's, and all of them have different specialties, coyotes upland game, turkey, and 3-gun (back-up for my Benelli M4).

Get a little better picture of what you're wanting out of the weapon, then it'll be much easier to point you in the right direction.
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Old 03-23-2012, 05:24 AM
Fork Horn
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 188

I purchased a Mossberg Bantam 12g for my nephew who was a small kid for 12 years old. It's has youth size stock a shorter than average barrel.
We started him off with light load shells and has since graduated to HV duck loads and deer slugs.
IMHO it is a great starter gun with the ability to add a full size stock at a later time if needed.
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Old 03-27-2012, 08:45 AM
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Northern Indiana
Posts: 52

you can get a 18.5" barrel for the 500 for 80 bucks at cabelas?
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Old 03-28-2012, 12:29 AM
Nontypical Buck
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Western Nebraska
Posts: 3,391

I need a gun that my youngest son (not old enough to hunt yet) can use later on
Wait until he's old enough!
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Old 03-28-2012, 06:39 AM
Nontypical Buck
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Adirondacks
Posts: 1,305

I hope you're not thinking of buckshot for home defense.In close quarters any 20 or 12 load is fairly lethal however the idea is to take out the bad guy without hurting others in the home or the home itself.Any buckshot pellet that misses the bad guy will blow right through drywall with enough juice left to put a serious hurt on someone in the next room or damaging electric wiring or plumbing.
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Old 04-24-2012, 11:20 AM
Join Date: Apr 2012
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12 or 20 ga...no practical difference.
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Old 04-24-2012, 10:29 PM
Dominant Buck
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Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 21,193

I purchased a Winchester 1300 pump 20 gauge. That has to have one of the tightest chokes of any shotgun I ever shot. With a heavy (it handles 3 inch) say.. goose load, that would make an nasty short range home defense gun. It also makes a great hunting gun as it came with wind chokes you can change out for the kind of hunting you want to do. Just a real nice shotgun that was not all that expensive at the time.
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Old 04-25-2012, 01:44 PM
Nontypical Buck
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 1,526

12 or 20 is your choice. Make sure you use a load that will reliably penetrate 12" (FBI minimum) ie. buckshot in the correct size. In a home defense situation the idea is to stop the threat, not piss it off with a superficial albeit nasty flesh wound.
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Old 04-26-2012, 08:48 PM
Fork Horn
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Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Missouri
Posts: 101

I am 21 years old and still use the youth Remington 870 magnum I got for christmas 8 years ago! haha It sports a new paint job but always gets the job done. It's great. It has the power I need to drop gobblers, but the size and weight that make it easy to haul through the woods all day. It shoots Winchester DoubleX 3" shells great out to 45 yards with a Primo's Jellyhead.
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