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Hi Croaker, Many thanks & much appreciation for your experienced advice. Since I have my KSG I have only been shooting in indoor ranges, therefore limited to slugs or double aught Buck shot. All my shots are dependably close to dead center at 10, 15 and 25 yards now with both types of ammo. After the first 250 rounds, I was repeatably consistent. I will be joining an out door range when things warm up and am anxious to work on the longer distances and explore all the other ammo choices available. For the close in HD distances, I am feeling much more familiar and confident. Apart from some older, non-brass ammo that was stored too long, my KSG has been flawless with zero failures (knock on wood). I will be taking an HD course next month and will install my Christmas present, the M-Carbo Trigger Kit, to lose the slop and reduce the 7+ pounds of trigger pull to 3+ pounds. The MBUS sights are fine, but at the close ranges, I've worked an equal amount on the 'point and shoot' method, which with my 2 point sling and the KSG super snugged into my shoulder, the recoil is negligible and the accuracy dependable (in that 7' to 15' range). "Practice makes perfect" in all things!
 

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I'm glad it was helpful! If you've got dummy slugs, I'd recommend that you learn how to reload from the firing position as the class will have spend a lot of time on reloading drills for the traditional shotguns and you don't want them embarrassed when all you have to do is switch magazines! My technique is to use my support hand, fingertips on the rear of the shell, to sort of bounce the front of the shell against the strong side of the ejection port so your thumb can then push it in. You kinda have to feel where the tube opening is with your fingertips to guide the round into place for your thumb to push. You can only reload the strong-side magazine tube with your support hand and have to switch shoulders and hands to load the weak-side tube. It's really tricky when you're moving and I left a trail of dropped shells behind me during a class when I tried it for real during a box drill.

I'm usually focused so much on running the pump properly that I never even notice how heavy the trigger is and have never considered it worth replacing.

I've signed up for a shotgun skills class with Tim in a few months and expect to have a blast again, albeit at more demanding in harder scenarios. One possibly being multiple targets to be engaged from the move!
 

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Sounds like a bunch of FUN! I don't have a dummy slugs, but will look into getting them. I have 4 of those dummy loads, but they never handle the same as real ammo and in some cases they cause more problems than they are worth. It wold be great if someone made pracrice shells with real ammo componants, but no powder so the actual weight and handling characteristics were just the like real ammo. I have not tried to reload the KSG fast, as my view was if you can't 'get it done' with 15 rounds, you're in much deeper shyte than you should be for sure! Also, the KSG can be painful on the re-;loads if you are not careful. H haven't tried to load it with my non-dominate side, but will just to see what it's like. BTW, where does this 'Tim' guy give these classes? I'm on the East Coast NYC/NJ area.
 

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Tim teaches in the Virginia area, specifically with FPFtraining.com. A little closer to you is Kirk at Lodestone Training and Consulting in Eastern Pennsylvania; I can recommend him as well.

I've got some Fiocchi dummy rounds that are properly weighted to simulate real rounds; they're pretty widely available. I'd get enough to fill both magazines so you can practice switching tubes for the Zombie Apocalypse. You're absolutely correct that if 15 rounds can't get 'er done, you've got bigger problems and shouldn't have been there in the first place!

Practicing reloading like I described is really only something that you'll need if you decide that you want to imitate reloading drills for traditional shotguns at a class. It's just something that I decided to do to stay in the flow with everybody else in the class. You can feel pretty self-conscious while everybody else is waiting on you to flip your gun upside down and add whatever the drill calls for. There's one drill that will empty both tubes that's a lot of fun, Rolling Thunder, a "load one, shoot one, load two, shoot two, etc." all the way out to "load five" at two targets while making sure that you don't muzzle the innocent target between them that would require you to keep track of the number of shots that you've made so you don't try to shoot an empty tube before switching. Not at all critical, but embarassing if you've lost count like I tend to do. It's really surprising what you lose track of when focused to shooting fast and accurately. Grip, stance, round count, they all tend to fly out the window with me as I tend to emphasize speed over perfect form despite specific instructions not to do so. Just too competitive, I guess!

A lot of drills start with an empty gun or one in the chamber so you can't just use a fully-loaded gun all the time. All that said, I've told instructors later in the day that I'm gonna switch tubes rather than reload so I can work the magazine switch under stress as I don't find that intuitive at all (probably just need to drill that a lot more). And for the qualification course that a lot of guys like to run at the end of the day, I'm absolutely running both magazines so I can take advantage of the fact that the KSG really doesn't need to be reloaded at all.

Thumbing shells into the magazine like I described is mostly rough on my thumbnail. Despite trimming it closely before class I usually end up chipping the nail, but nothing more serious.
 

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I wouldn't use anything smaller than T-shot for self or home defense - an excellent choice if you live in an apartment that shares walls with the unit next door. #4 buck would be a good choice if you live in a residential neighborhood where over penetration is still a concern, and #1 buck is an excellent choice if over penetration is no concern at all. But keep in mind that your likely adversary will probably be wearing heavier clothing in the winter.
Here is a handy reference:

9 shot: 0.08 inch diameter
8 shot: 0.09"
7 1/2 shot: 0.10"
6 shot: 0.11"
5 shot: 0.12"
4 shot: 0.13"
2 shot: 0.15"
BB: 0.18"
BBB: 0.19"
T: 0.20"
F: 0.22"
#4 buck: 0.24"
#3 buck: 0.25"
#2 buck: 0.27"
#1 buck: 0.30"
0 buck: .32"
00 buck: 0.33"
000 buck: 0.36"

Be advised that there are different shot designations in England, Australia, and Europe than are used in the US. Shot Size Chart
 

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Tim teaches in the Virginia area, specifically with FPFtraining.com. A little closer to you is Kirk at Lodestone Training and Consulting in Eastern Pennsylvania; I can recommend him as well.

I've got some Fiocchi dummy rounds that are properly weighted to simulate real rounds; they're pretty widely available. I'd get enough to fill both magazines so you can practice switching tubes for the Zombie Apocalypse. You're absolutely correct that if 15 rounds can't get 'er done, you've got bigger problems and shouldn't have been there in the first place!

Practicing reloading like I described is really only something that you'll need if you decide that you want to imitate reloading drills for traditional shotguns at a class. It's just something that I decided to do to stay in the flow with everybody else in the class. You can feel pretty self-conscious while everybody else is waiting on you to flip your gun upside down and add whatever the drill calls for. There's one drill that will empty both tubes that's a lot of fun, Rolling Thunder, a "load one, shoot one, load two, shoot two, etc." all the way out to "load five" at two targets while making sure that you don't muzzle the innocent target between them that would require you to keep track of the number of shots that you've made so you don't try to shoot an empty tube before switching. Not at all critical, but embarrassing if you've lost count like I tend to do. It's really surprising what you lose track of when focused to shooting fast and accurately. Grip, stance, round count, they all tend to fly out the window with me as I tend to emphasize speed over perfect form despite specific instructions not to do so. Just too competitive, I guess!

A lot of drills start with an empty gun or one in the chamber so you can't just use a fully-loaded gun all the time. All that said, I've told instructors later in the day that I'm gonna switch tubes rather than reload so I can work the magazine switch under stress as I don't find that intuitive at all (probably just need to drill that a lot more). And for the qualification course that a lot of guys like to run at the end of the day, I'm absolutely running both magazines so I can take advantage of the fact that the KSG really doesn't need to be reloaded at all.

Thumbing shells into the magazine like I described is mostly rough on my thumbnail. Despite trimming it closely before class I usually end up chipping the nail, but nothing more serious.
Hi Croaker, Thanks again for all the good info! My family is from VA and I do get down there quite a bit and in fact, am considering retiring down there soon to the Richmond area. Is that where Tim works from? The Eastern, PA area is reachable easy enough from where I am located now, though. That sort of training can only be a good thing and keeps you fresh and focused. Some of the drills you write about are very similar to things I do in my work to keep track of lots of information coming in simultaneously, so I'm anxious to apply that real world job experience to working the KSG! I've been looking for a 'second skin' fitting type of glove for winter as well as for re-loading protection. Have you eve found one that actually fills that bill? I've been looking for a year, but none of them really fit tight enough or are thin AND strong enough? Much appreciation for the knowledge!! Stay Safe & Blue Skies! Saint
 

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I wouldn't use anything smaller than T-shot for self or home defense - an excellent choice if you live in an apartment that shares walls with the unit next door. #4 buck would be a good choice if you live in a residential neighborhood where over penetration is still a concern, and #1 buck is an excellent choice if over penetration is no concern at all. But keep in mind that your likely adversary will probably be wearing heavier clothing in the winter.
Here is a handy reference:

9 shot: 0.08 inch diameter
8 shot: 0.09"
7 1/2 shot: 0.10"
6 shot: 0.11"
5 shot: 0.12"
4 shot: 0.13"
2 shot: 0.15"
BB: 0.18"
BBB: 0.19"
T: 0.20"
F: 0.22"
#4 buck: 0.24"
#3 buck: 0.25"
#2 buck: 0.27"
#1 buck: 0.30"
0 buck: .32"
00 buck: 0.33"
000 buck: 0.36"

Be advised that there are different shot designations in England, Australia, and Europe than are used in the US. Shot Size Chart
Thanks for the info, ARA! I've downloaded a few charts, too that also have penetration date, distance fall off graphs, etc. Always a LOT to learn! For my home situation the #4 Buck would do, but I'll definitely have the 'double aught' for winter coats! I'm not worried about neighbors as I live in a house, not an apartment, but depending upon the potential direction of fire, there is only one direction I need to be concerned about over penetration of missed shots continuing travel. Thanks for the Info!!
 

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Tim's classes are usually in Culpepper or at a range in the NE part of West Virginia.

I strongly disagree with the belief that #4 buckshot is good enough for self-defense under any circumstance. It generally lacks the power to penetrate bone, even through a thin t-shirt, and will likely to require multiple shots to put your attacker down. I want one shot, one kill and that means double-ought. I think that I've trained enough to deliver that level of accuracy in a stressful environment. While a class isn't close to a real home invasion, it's about as close as we can practically get and there's a huge difference between shooting on a range on your own time and doing it under the eyeballs of the entire class with your instructor happy to tell you what you're doing wrong (excuse me, suggest things that could use improvement).

I live in an apartment that only has drywall and studs between me and my neighbor. I'm not concerned about over penetration as I plan to mitigate the chance that a pellet will penetrate through the dry wall. I generally don't expect to have to shoot anything in line with that interior wall as my entry hallway is at a right angle to that wall and is about 3 or 4 yards long with a brick wall on the other side of the landing for anything that penetrates my solid wood door. If somebody's trying to batter my door down, I'll have plenty of time to call the cops and position myself at the end of the hallway in case the intruder breaks through before the cops get there. If I've done something stupid like remember to lock my door, I may not have a choice as the hallway from my bedroom door faces her wall, so I plan to shoot from a low position so that any stray pellets will impact high on the wall so as to avoid hitting anything important, like my neighbor. She's nice, I'd prefer to avoid spilling any of her blood if I can help it.

Analyze your environment, figure out what walls will allow penetration into adjoining rooms and decide how to deal with attackers in those spaces. What's on the other side of the wall in my kid's bedroom from this angle? That kind of thing. And there are plenty of other sorts of things that you can do to simplify your firing environment during a home invasion. Have you trained your family to get on the floor if violence breaks out? That would make things a lot easier to take a shot if you knew that they were already below chest height. If you've decided on a safe room strategy for your family members, are its walls safe from stray rounds? Your's or the intruders? Tall filled bookshelves are about the best bullet absorbers that readily available, IMO.

I would strongly recommend taking a home defense shotgun class from reputable instructors like Tim who can discuss the importance of "one and done" and how best to do that. Good trainers will show photographic evidence of the effects between the different sizes of buckshot and discuss cases where guys have taken multiple hits from guys thinking like ya'll do with #4 and have still been able to close enough to grapple the shooter before falling down. Or the utter futility of birdshot at ranges over 10 feet! They should also discuss various strategies for home defense, the legal issues involved, and how to deal with the cops. There should be a minimum of a couple of hours of this sort of instruction before any shooting begins.

While I'm just another another anonymous guy on a forum and have never had to deal with a home invasion, I'd strongly recommend taking a good home defense class before making any permanent or expensive decisions about it, especially ones based on some guy's blatherings on the net. I don't know why people get so hung up on over penetration as even double-ought buck won't penetrate through a body if you've trained enough to make your hit. Use premium quality ammo and there won't be any stray pellets to overpenetrate the wall behind the home invader. Now, it's entirely possible that I'm massively overconfident about my ability to actually make those kinds of shots during a real home invasion, but I find my KSG easier to shoot accurately then either a rifle or a pistol despite my greater level of experience with both, so maybe not. I honestly hope never to have to find out!
 

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Tim's classes are usually in Culpepper or at a range in the NE part of West Virginia.

I strongly disagree with the belief that #4 buckshot is good enough for self-defense under any circumstance. It generally lacks the power to penetrate bone, even through a thin t-shirt, and will likely to require multiple shots to put your attacker down. I want one shot, one kill and that means double-ought. I think that I've trained enough to deliver that level of accuracy in a stressful environment. While a class isn't close to a real home invasion, it's about as close as we can practically get and there's a huge difference between shooting on a range on your own time and doing it under the eyeballs of the entire class with your instructor happy to tell you what you're doing wrong (excuse me, suggest things that could use improvement).

I live in an apartment that only has drywall and studs between me and my neighbor. I'm not concerned about over penetration as I plan to mitigate the chance that a pellet will penetrate through the dry wall. I generally don't expect to have to shoot anything in line with that interior wall as my entry hallway is at a right angle to that wall and is about 3 or 4 yards long with a brick wall on the other side of the landing for anything that penetrates my solid wood door. If somebody's trying to batter my door down, I'll have plenty of time to call the cops and position myself at the end of the hallway in case the intruder breaks through before the cops get there. If I've done something stupid like remember to lock my door, I may not have a choice as the hallway from my bedroom door faces her wall, so I plan to shoot from a low position so that any stray pellets will impact high on the wall so as to avoid hitting anything important, like my neighbor. She's nice, I'd prefer to avoid spilling any of her blood if I can help it.

Analyze your environment, figure out what walls will allow penetration into adjoining rooms and decide how to deal with attackers in those spaces. What's on the other side of the wall in my kid's bedroom from this angle? That kind of thing. And there are plenty of other sorts of things that you can do to simplify your firing environment during a home invasion. Have you trained your family to get on the floor if violence breaks out? That would make things a lot easier to take a shot if you knew that they were already below chest height. If you've decided on a safe room strategy for your family members, are its walls safe from stray rounds? Your's or the intruders? Tall filled bookshelves are about the best bullet absorbers that readily available, IMO.

I would strongly recommend taking a home defense shotgun class from reputable instructors like Tim who can discuss the importance of "one and done" and how best to do that. Good trainers will show photographic evidence of the effects between the different sizes of buckshot and discuss cases where guys have taken multiple hits from guys thinking like ya'll do with #4 and have still been able to close enough to grapple the shooter before falling down. Or the utter futility of birdshot at ranges over 10 feet! They should also discuss various strategies for home defense, the legal issues involved, and how to deal with the cops. There should be a minimum of a couple of hours of this sort of instruction before any shooting begins.

While I'm just another another anonymous guy on a forum and have never had to deal with a home invasion, I'd strongly recommend taking a good home defense class before making any permanent or expensive decisions about it, especially ones based on some guy's blatherings on the net. I don't know why people get so hung up on over penetration as even double-ought buck won't penetrate through a body if you've trained enough to make your hit. Use premium quality ammo and there won't be any stray pellets to over penetrate the wall behind the home invader. Now, it's entirely possible that I'm massively overconfident about my ability to actually make those kinds of shots during a real home invasion, but I find my KSG easier to shoot accurately then either a rifle or a pistol despite my greater level of experience with both, so maybe not. I honestly hope never to have to find out!
Hey Croaker,

Appreciate you taking the time to give such in depth replys! I have done my homework on my HD plans for a home invasion from all doors and other potential entry points less accessable that would create more disturbance (like breaking glass) to get in and 95% are, thankfully, 'penetration danger' clear. We are sited on several acres surrounded by forest. The winter is the only time we can see our neighbors homes; 2 are well below us and the other well above so 'double aught' will fill one mag and slugs the other; "better safe than sorry"... (I hear you)!! Culpepper is very near where my brother retired so I will look into taking a course with Tim this Spring! Here in north Jersey, the law says you are supposed to try ro 'escape' if someone breaks & enters with a gun and ONLY in a life or death confrontation INSIDE your home are you 'justified' in firing... totally illegal to fire a gun ANYWHERE in NJ except in a licensed range (even if you have 500 acres)! Between their insane gun laws and the highest property taxes in America, this State is the among the worst place to live in the country. Thanks Again & Blue Skies, Croaker!
 

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#4 Buck

As an example, 2 3/4" Winchester Super X #4 Buck has 27 pellets, 0.24" in diameter, and the muzzle velocity is 1325 ft/sec.
At inside-the-house distances it is a meatgrinder barring real heavy winter clothing.
But if you doubt, that's fine. There's always 2 3/4" #1 Buck: 16 .30 caliber pellets moving at 1225 ft/sec.
Whether you like 16 .30 caliber wound channels more than 27 1/4" wound channels is a matter of taste, I suppose.
At inside-the-house distances it won't matter to the target.
 

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rsaintg: If you're in Tim's shotgun skills class this spring you should be sure to introduce yourself. It'd be very nice to have another KSG guy in the class!

ARA: Your life, your choice. But you don't really, really, want to use ordinary hunting ammo; you want to use the tightest clustering ammo you can get and that's not available in #1 or #4, see [Beginner's Guide]: Buckshot for Home Defense for some recommendations. It would probably be worth finding some comparative videos for #00 and the other sizes where there's a replica skeleton inside the ballistic gel to get a feel for how each one does.
 

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Skeleton. Bone.
Not vital organs.
When the liver, spleen, gall bladder, and intestines are shredded, the tissues are reduced to jello by hydrostatic shock, and every artery and vein in the area are compromised, it doesn't matter if a bone or two gets broken. The target can't function and the coroner's report will read the same whether bone gets broken or not.
 

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You're not wrong, but how quickly will they disable the perp? The best target to do that is the central nervous system, meaning spine or skull and the very best place is the https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medulla_oblongata that sits behind the eyes at the base of the brain. That controls breathing and the heart, which means your target is going to collapse like a puppet with its strings cut. The second best target is the heart and its associated large blood vessels like the vena cavae and the aorta, but it will generally take a couple of minutes to bleed out and disable your attacker. How many shots can your attacker get off in that time before he falls over in a puddle of his own blood? And belly wounds are even less effective than chest shots. You may dismiss the possibility of people continuing to fight after such devastating wounds, but it does happen, certainly not every time, but some people get so amped up that they don't even feel the shots and continue to attack. Quite frankly, my highest priority is immediately disabling any home invaders so they can't hurt me or mine. And experience has shown that belly shots don't do that as well as the others that I've listed. Ask any vets of Iraq or Afghanistan with infantry experience how many shots it would take to put someone down so that they were no longer a threat. And ask them how effective belly wounds in doing so compared to chest and head shots.
 

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All of this is off topic, as the subject of this thread is recoil and the difference in recoil between 00, #1, and #4 buckshot is negligible given similar muzzle velocities.

Since you seem to want to equate the stopping power of 5.56mm rifle rounds with 12 gauge shotgun rounds, you might consider acquainting yourself with the hydrodynamic effects of gunshots on human flesh, @Croaker666 . You are sure to learn something useful.
 

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No need, very well aware. I gather that I wasn't clear about why you might want to compare notes with infantry vets; I meant about shot placement, not stopping power.
 

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Just put on the Howitzer brake on my sons KSG, regardless to what anyone says that device works as advertised! We immediately felt a night and day difference. 00 buck and full power slug rounds now felt like light birdshot rounds. We fired more heavy rounds in one outing then we would ever dream of before.

we were both complete skeptics on this before we put it on but decided to give it a try and I am glad we did.
I don’t know about the science behind this device and I really don’t care all I know is it works we were absolutely delighted to have some thing that actually works.

As a sidenote I made a mistake when I ordered it and got the wrong barrel nut wrench and had to substitute it out for the correct one. Customer service at that company was absolutely fantastic sent them an email and they responded within five minutes, we got the correct one in the mail and sent the old one back the whole process worked flawlessly. Great job Hi-Tec!
 

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I agree 100%, proper training is essential, however Better training is enhanced by not getting the crap knocked out of you every time you pull the trigger
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I agree people put too much emphasis on “stuff” thinking as long as you have the most expensive and newest gadgets you will win the day. I have learned that training is vital and consistently overlooked or ignored. Probably because it is hard, I train as often as possible with everything I have at my disposal. I have found that it provides really good lessons and my personal observation is that it shows you more importantly what doesn’t work. I have seen guys show up with tags still hanging from gear they have never even tried on let alone use in any manner, The common group think is that because they bought x gun or Y holster they are instantly John Wick, they are trying to imitate Hollywood not reality.

As with everything in life it is a balancing act between gear, training and tactics.

I will get off the soap box now!
 

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rsaintg: If you're in Tim's shotgun skills class this spring you should be sure to introduce yourself. It'd be very nice to have another KSG guy in the class!

ARA: Your life, your choice. But you don't really, really, want to use ordinary hunting ammo; you want to use the tightest clustering ammo you can get and that's not available in #1 or #4, see [Beginner's Guide]: Buckshot for Home Defense for some recommendations. It would probably be worth finding some comparative videos for #00 and the other sizes where there's a replica skeleton inside the ballistic gel to get a feel for how each one does.
Hey Croaker, Really looking forward to hooking up this Spring in Culpepper! I'll let you know when I have the dates so we can connect up in person. If you have a link to Tim's registration site, please post it & I'll start the process. Thanks again for all the great information! Stay Safe, Best Always & Blue Skies! rsaintg
 
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