In this era of hijacked protests turned into riots, the old-fashioned “riot gun” is making a comeback. Many people still use shotguns for the bunkering down phase of home defense. But as the carbine has gained popularity, corporate knowledge of how to keep the venerable scattergun fed and happy is waning. The shotgun has many idiosyncrasies, limitations, and unique capabilities that are no longer commonly understood.
In the Introduction to Defensive Shotgun course, students will learn various manipulations, and how to “pattern” their scatterguns at different ranges (for ammo selection and also so you know the distance at which the size of your pattern will exceed the width of a man-sized target).
You’ll practice how to keep your shotgun from being off-lined and taken away. You’ll use it to block, off-line, and clothes-line an assailant with a baseball bat.
We’ll discuss your load options, and explode some myths. When we get done, you’ll have a better understanding of what your shotgun will and won’t do. You’ll be much more capable of maximizing its advantages.
The shotgun has limited range. Although modern buckshot loads “print” much tighter than they used to, they still call it a scattergun for a reason. The same hail of lead that makes shotguns devastating at conversational distances can make them a liability out past 20 or 30 yards.
Problem Solving with the Alley Sweeper
Accordingly, we we’ll present you with various shooting problems, at ranges from 1 foot to 100 yards. You’ll decide how to handle them, whether it’s switching to slug on the fly (we’ll teach you how to do that quickly and efficiently), or using the shotgun as an impact tool, or transitioning to pistol (say, to deal with a hostage taker in a walk-in closet).
The Myth of Buckshot Under-Penetration
Many choose the shotgun on the potentially erroneous theory that it’s less dangerous to the neighbors.
Heloderm has conducted penetration tests of various construction materials, including double layers of interior drywall on either side of 2×4 studs, and typical exterior walls with insulation. Contrary to popular belief, modern buckshot will blast through not just one, but a series of interior and exterior walls. We found that birdshot may be stopped by the insulation in exterior walls, AFTER passing through 3 sheets of drywall–that is, 2 rooms in your house.
Unfortunately, while birdshot can kill, it’s not as efficient a man stopper as buckshot or slugs, especially if there are more solid intervening barriers involved. Heloderm’s lead instructor has been struck by birdshot at distance, and it did not penetrate his clothing.
Of course, your neighbors will be safer from pistol or shotgun over-penetration (or misses), from either pistols, shotguns or carbines, if the walls of your castle are made of brick or even slump block.
Navy SEAL Jeff Gonzales told our lead instructor “The best bullet trap is your target.” Training will make you less likely to miss, but we still must count on missing occasionally (or with part of a shotgun pattern at medium range), under the dynamic conditions of a real gunfight. Accordingly we train to get a clear line of fire through dynamic movement.
In our Shotgun classes, you’ll gain a more realistic appreciation of what your shotgun is capable of.