The Very Best Ammo For Home Defense

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The Very Best Ammo For Home Defense

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Previously, I wrote about my basic layout for home defense, and why I like to have my weapons laid out in such a specific way. In this article, I’ll go over my thought process for choosing ammunition, and what types of ammo I have throughout my house.

Generally speaking, I select the type of ammunition that will inflict the most damage if I ever have to use it.

Shotgun

As I’ve said before, in my opinion, home defense starts and ends with a shotgun. It is absolutely the best weapon that I own for self-defense. My 12-gauge shotgun is a permanent fixture above my nightstand, and it’s always loaded with Winchester PDX1 shells.

There are plenty of different home-defense shotguns, both slugs and buckshot. Choosing the best load for your shotgun should be based on your use. If your shotgun is primarily meant for close-range engagements, buckshot would be your best bet. If you might use it at further distances, a slug would perform admirably.

My personal favorite round is Winchester PDX1. This specific round has three buck pellets surrounding a slug. The result is an extremely deadly round. However, there are plenty of different shotgun rounds that could meet your needs.

Handgun

Regardless of caliber, hollow-point ammunition is going to be your best bet for defense purposes. Jacketed hollow-point ammunition expands on impact, as opposed to traditional target ammo, which does not. For defense use, this means that once the bullet hits your target, it will expand and impact more tissue. As a result, the round is much deadlier. While it is more expensive, hollow point ammunition is worth it for defense purposes.

Rifle

There are a few different types of rounds used in 5.56 ammo that are used in AR-15s. There is the standard full-metal-jacket ball ammo, hollow-point ammo, and also barrier blind ammunition. Barrier blind is a relatively new type of ammunition, and represents the most modern ammunition technology. Based on initial testing, barrier-blind ammunition performs very well.

However, high-grain ball ammo and hollow-point ammo also perform well in AR platform firearms. In other rifles, most quality hunting ammunition will perform well for home defense use.

Overall, the number of different types of ammunition available can be overwhelming. As a general rule of thumb, more propellant means a faster bullet, which means a deadlier round. However, there are a few other things to keep in mind. Modern improvements in ammunition, such as jacketed hollow point and barrier-blind ammunition, perform extremely well. They do an excellent job expanding when they hit their target. This expansion creates a much deadlier round then the traditional full-metal-jacket range ammo. When it comes to shotguns, buckshot is probably your best bet, but once again, there is modern ammunition that has both a rifled slug and buckshot built into it.

What do you prefer for home defense ammo? Share your thoughts in the section below:

The post The Very Best Ammo For Home Defense appeared first on Off The Grid News.

Two Person Armed Defense: A Different Approach To Firearms Training

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Disciplined training is especially important in a two-person defense strategy.

Many folks that take self-defense seriously and carry a pistol on a daily basis train extensively on an individual level. Consider combining your live firearm training with another person that you may spend a great deal of time with, perhaps a co-worker, a good friend or your spouse? Are you both armed on a regular basis?

This past year I was able to attend a course that focused on an armed situation where you and another may be forced to work as a cohesive unit. The session entitled “2 Person Armed Defense” (2PAD) provided some excellent insight into working with another armed person in a self-defense situation. This training, along with related topics, consists of firearms courses offered by Personal Defense Network (PDN) and its Executive Director, Rob Pincus.

In the course I attended, Pincus was the on-site instructor for the 2PAD class held at the Gun Club Range in Gypsum, Colorado during the month of June 2017. An overview of critical firearms safety rules started off the day as it always should. Pincus then discussed what he calls the “3 C’s Foundation” of communication, coordination, and cooperation when it comes to teamwork. He reinforced these concepts throughout the day.

An additional key point made early on in the day is that an “individual response” is almost always the first typical reaction in any high-stress event. Therefore, the day’s training focused on moving to or with your partner after your immediate response as an individual. Once these basics were well ingrained, we moved on to a series of live firearm drills, based on two people having to work together.

The following are critical drills utilized during 2PAD training:

1.Extend Your Handgun/Touch And Press Trigger

 One of the few individual drills throughout the day started out at the five-yard line. This distance is typical to defensive actions in the average armed confrontation. First, the student maintained a proper stance (squarely facing the target with feet placed shoulder width apart) and firing grip on the handgun (the students utilized Sul position most often). The student would then extend the pistol straightforward while beginning trigger touch, and immediately they would press the trigger as they aimed the muzzle at the threat/target. All the while the student would focus on the high center mass of the target as they looked into the desired strike zone (not as seen in normal-sighted shooting).

This technique provides excellent defensive accuracy and is fast at the five- to ten-yard line. The drill was repeated several times, all while increasing rounds fired from two up to six. This combat focus drill is a trademark drill of PDN and Pincus and is worth adding to your training regime.

If you have not used the Sul or indoor ready position as it is sometimes called, take a look at the following link: https://www.personaldefensenetwork.com/article/firearm-ready-positions/

2.Move With Your Teammate And Shoot

 This segment began to ingrain the skill of movement into defensive shooting. Each two-person team would move a few steps laterally when the shoot command was given. The movement was not always side by side but could be towards each other. The intent was to get a degree of comfort in working with another armed person with the added stress of movement and combat-accurate fire on the threat. Action was also encouraged after firing, which began the lead up to the next training drill: moving to your partner and then shooting.

3.Move To Teammate And Engage The Threat

 In a situation where you and another armed citizen do not know where the attacker is, moving towards each other could very well provide an advantage. Of course, by doing so, the argument exists that it would become somewhat easier for the attacker to take both of you out. This drill has valid training points but ideally should often be practiced with your armed partner. This drill begins as one of the pairs observes a threat, moves and starts firing. The second of the team would then draw their handgun and move to assist their partner (utilizing the Sul position). The goal for the second partner would be to cover the 360 degrees for additional threats and look for an escape route. Ideally, you and your teammate would be pressed up against each other back to back with the “rear guard” so to speak, grabbing onto the beltline of their partner to help lead them to a more secure zone at the first opportunity. In the event the partner shooting would run out of ammo or had a malfunction, they would call for the “rear guard” to cover and rotate towards the threat to engage.

This drill may sound a bit nerve-wracking (any real shooting would be), but I found it to have real-world application, and it was a way to shape the thinking of an effective response should the need ever arise.

4.The Figure 8

 Over the day, all drills were continued to reinforce the key concepts. Also, working through doorways and around vehicles were added in and always with a partner. Pincus likes to key in on the immediate and individual startled response, which is very probable in the real world. A good drill that teams performed to help instill this surprised response was the Figure 8 drill.

A pair of students would walk in figure 8 (crossing each others paths) parallel to the targets. Pincus would then call out numbers (numbers were drawn on targets with a marker) the student pair would turn towards threats (targets), which were scattered at varying distances, and engage the appropriate numeral(s) with multiple shots. Each student would fire only at the threats on their proper side. The Figure 8 is a dynamic drill, and as close to realism when having to find and identify the danger while engaging as any I’ve done, and all the while working with another armed citizen.

During the entire course and for all drills Pincus reinforced the importance of a valid 360-degree scan. What are you scanning for? In order of priority: additional threats such as other armed citizens or law enforcement that you don’t want to get shot by or other folks that may be willing to help you or others in some way.  Then scan for a position of advantages, such as cover, a more precise shooting position, or other position of tactical advantage.

Ammunition requirements for 2PAD are in the 400 to 500 rounds range over a full day of training. This training course was a different approach than many others I have attended, especially from a civilian perspective. It provides insight into the reality of working with another armed person, and I would not hesitate to participate again.

For many long years I have trained in law enforcement both as a student and as an instructor, and now in the civilian world. If there is one good piece of advice I could give to any student of defensive living and mindset, it would be to keep pushing yourself with valid training and a proper attitude. Rob Pincus and Personal Defense Network provide such training.

Picking The Best Handgun Night Sight: 5 You Should Consider

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Picking The Best Handgun Night Sight: 5 You Should Consider

Let’s be honest. Handgun night sights are all pretty similar. What really are the differentiating features? In this article, we will get down into the nitty gritty and compare some similar night sights.

The sights that we will be reviewing are made by XS, Truglo, Night Fision, Trijicon and AmeriGlo. When it’s all said and done, we will give a winner for each category, and then make some buying recommendations at the end.

We will focus on sights that are made for a Glock, but all these brands make sights for multiple weapons. In terms of what we are looking for, we will talk about brightness, target acquisition, size, durability and price.

Before talking about specifics, we will give a brief introduction on each sight.

XS Sights

XS is most commonly known for their DXW Big Dot sight. This sight features a very large painted white dot with tritium inside of the painted ring. The rear sight is a white painted stripe, but a tritium rear sight is available at an added cost.

While they are much less common, XS also makes a more traditional set of sights, which they call the F8. This sight changes up the norm. While most handgun sights utilize three dots, the F8 uses two dots. The rear sight has one dot, which is located below the notch in the sight. Essentially, you place the front dot on top of the rear dot, as opposed to in between two rear dots.

Truglo

Truglo has a pretty wide variety of handgun sights. They have sights that use only fiber optics and only tritium, but they also have their TFO sights which combines the two. These sights are bulkier, as there must be enough space to contain the fiber optic element.

Their TFX sights are similar to the TFO, but they utilize a painted ring around the front dot. The Tritium Pro sights are the same as the standard tritium sights, but with an added painted ring as well. The TFX Pro are their most expensive, and they utilize an orange painted ring for maximum brightness.

Night Fision

Night Fision is relatively new on the scene, and focus on strictly three dot tritium sights. Their sights utilize a tritium front sight with a painted ring. For the paint color, you are able to choose between white, orange and yellow.

For the rear sight, you can choose either square or U-notch. You can choose white paint around the dots, no paint, and you can even choose no tritium at all, and just have a simple U shape.

Trijicon

While they are very popular for their ACOG riflescopes, Trijicon is also well respected for their pistol night sights. These are also simple three dot style tritium sights, and you can choose between a yellow or orange front ring. The rear sights are a U shape, similar to the previously mentioned Night Fision sights.

AmeriGlo

AmeriGlo has a few different options for pistol sights. They have their Cap series, which utilizes a square front sight. You have the choice between a two dot rear sight or a rear sight that utilizes one line below the notch.

Their Classic sights are simple tritium three dot sights with painted rings. There really isn’t much else to them. They’ve also got their sights without any dots at all, which won’t be discussed in this article, as they serve a completely different purpose.

Lastly, they’ve got their Ghost Ring rear sight. This is a much different concept than any other sight on this list, as the rear sight is a large ring with two dots as a guide. Essentially, you put the front tritium dot within the rear circle.

Brightness

Our first comparison category is brightness. While there are a few different sights that appear pretty bright, there is one pretty clear winner.

The AmeriGlo Cap sight appears very bright due to the amount of high visibility paint that is utilized in the front sight. Similarly, the TFX Pro from Truglo appears bright as well due to the combination of tritium and fiber optics.

However, when using these sights at night, the Night Fision sights are by far the brightest out there. They apparently use more tritium in the lamps, because these sights are noticeably brighter than the competition.

Target Acquisition

The XS Big Dot sights allow for quick target acquisition due to the large front sight. However, this is somewhat of a double-edged sword, because at longer distance the Big Dot sight becomes much less accurate.

Other sights with quick target acquisition that will be more accurate at distance are the AmeriGlo Classic, Truglo Tritium Pro and TFX Pro, and the Night Fision sights.

One other factor to keep in mind is target acquisition at night. When it is dark out, the painted rings that many of these sights rely upon will not be as useful. In this situation, the sights with brighter tritium will be your best bet.

Size

If you are just looking at sights for your range gun, size won’t be much of an issue for you. However, if you are looking for sights for a carry weapon, smaller sights will be important, because you need them to fit in a holster. This almost immediately rules out any fiber optic sights.

With the exception of the AmeriGlo Ghost Ring and any of the Truglo fiber optic sights, any of the aforementioned sights will be suitable.

Durability

It may not seem like a huge thing, but durability is an important aspect to consider with pistol sights, especially if you are going to be carrying the weapon in a holster.

Trijicon prides itself on the durability of their ACOG riflescopes. However, their HD pistol sights utilize paint to circle the dot on the front sight. As time goes on, this paint is likely to chip. Similarly, the XS sights utilize paint, as well.

In comparison, Night Fision sights utilize a ballistic polymer material for the front ring. This allows for significantly increased durability. These sights are also made from quality steel and given a nitride coating.

Newer Truglo product sights have been known to have some durability concerns. While the lamps are protected, there have been some issues with lamps coming loose.

In terms of durability, your best bet is the Night Fision sights.

Price

These sights vary significantly in price, dependent on the features.

Truglo sights can get very expensive, and their less expensive models don’t have the features that you want. They won’t have anything to increase your speed of target acquisition, and will not be as bright as some of the competition.

Trijicon sights are comfortably overpriced, and will be easily outperformed by the competition.

The Big Dot sights are affordably priced, but adding in the tritium rear sight makes them pretty expensive. Similarly, the XS F8 sights are also on the expensive side.

The AmeriGlo classic tritium sights are affordably priced, but aren’t the brightest or most durable option out there.

While I could write a whole separate article just comparing this, we will keep it simple for you.

The Night Fision sights offer the best value.

Overall Winner

Some will be surprised to hear this, but the Night Fision sights are some of the best on the market. They offer an unreal combination of affordability, customizing options, and overall quality.

In terms of brightness, these are the brightest sights we looked at. The custom-chosen front ring will increase your target acquisition, and the fact that they aren’t painted will ensure that they will last for years. Similarly, the high-quality construction ensures they will last.

While these aren’t the cheapest sights on the list, they aren’t far off. They are extremely competitively priced, especially when considering the high value. In my opinion, I would stray away from the Trijicons and Truglos in favor of these Night Fision sights.

Do you agree or disagree? Share your thoughts in the section below:

5 Tips For The Novice Concealed Carrier

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5 Tips For The Novice Concealed Carrier

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First of all, welcome to the world of concealed carrying! Most concealed carriers would agree that carrying a weapon will make you feel safer and more prepared if the unthinkable happens. Still, there are a few things that are easily forgotten, especially if you are also fairly new to firearms.

1. How to Conceal

While it seems extremely obvious, how to conceal your weapon should be a major consideration. Despite what some people will say, there is no one-size-fits-all answer. Some people will prefer to carry appendix, some over their back pocket, and some will use completely different methods to carry. For the new concealed carrier, this could be overwhelming.

In my opinion, the best way for you to carry is whatever you are comfortable with. For me, I prefer carrying over my back pocket, but find that it’s harder for me to conceal the weapon there, based on my body shape. This drove me to consider carrying appendix, which is now how I carry for most of the year.

You Don’t Need A Firearms License For This Weapon!</strong.

Finding the best way for you to concealed carry will almost certainly take trying out multiple holsters. For my first carry weapon, I had four different holsters before I found the right one. It’s like a glass slipper, except for guns, so it’s way more awesome. Trying out multiple holsters to find the most comfortable one is extremely important, because if you aren’t comfortable carrying with one holster, odds are you won’t carry at all.

Another important factor to consider is the time of year. During the summer in hotter areas, a pocket gun, such as a small .380, in a pocket holster will be your best friend. As the weather gets cooler, it will be easier to conceal bigger guns in multiple ways, as you will be wearing more, heavier clothing.

2. Drawing

Keep in mind the fact that carrying a weapon means you have to be prepared to draw it. In the event that the unpredictable happens, the last thing you want is to be fumbling around, unable to efficiently draw your weapon.

My advice would be to practice drawing if you are new to carrying or trying out a new holster. Empty the magazine, clear the weapon, and practice drawing. As you get more proficient, and if the range you shoot at allows for it, start practicing with live ammunition. The more efficiently you can draw your weapon, the more prepared you will be.

3. Thumb Safety

This reminder is aimed specifically at someone that is new to firearms. Keep in mind whether or not the firearm you are carrying has a safety. If it does, and you have to draw it, remember to flip the safety! In a high-stress situation, simple things like this are extremely easy to forget. Once again, practicing drawing and using your weapon will help develop muscle memory.

4. Best Ammo

For someone new to firearms, the different kinds of ammunition can be overwhelming. This could be argued endlessly, but do some research on the best ammo for personal defense and make your own decision. My personal preference is to carry hollow point ammunition. Hollow point bullets are designed to expand when they enter a target, which will cause more damage to a bad guy.

Another thing to keep in mind for someone new to concealed carrying is the time of year. If your potential target is wearing a huge winter coat, you might want some hotter ammunition or a larger caliber weapon to penetrate the extra layers.

5. Extra Ammo

Yet another facet of concealed carrying that could be argued endlessly. My opinion on whether or not to carry extra mags/ammo is that it should be based on your assessed threat level. If I’m just taking my dog on a walk or running to the gas station, I may not carry any extra mags. If I’m going to a more crowded area, like a shopping mall or a grocery store, I’m probably going to grab some extra ammo on the way out the door.

Overall, carrying a concealed weapon is an excellent idea, provided that you know how to safely and accurately operate the weapon you are carrying. For me, the added peace of mind is an awesome feeling.

While there are hundreds of factors that go into concealed carrying, these five reminders are just a few of the basics for someone new to concealed carrying to keep in mind.

What advice would you add? Share it in the section below:

Clever Home Defense Tactics That Will Keep You Safe

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Clever Home Defense Tactics That Will Keep You Safe

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Many people own weapons for the purpose of protecting their home. However, how many people actually have a plan for what to do if they ever have to use them?

While it is a scary thought, thinking about some home defense basics is worthwhile. Having your weapons is great. Having a plan increases your ability to protect yourself with them.

In this article, we will go over some basic home defense tactics. I have written previously about how I like to have weapons spread out throughout my house. While I realize that not everyone agrees with this thought process, the tactics will be similar.

As long as you have a weapon that is easily accessible, your home can be defended. How you do that is up to you, whether you have guns throughout your house, or if you are always armed on your person. However, for home defense, I cannot understate the importance of having a shotgun. In my opinion, this really is the most important home defense weapon.

You Don’t Need A Firearms License For This Weapon!

Before getting into the tactics, we are going to assume that you have all of the non-weapon home defense measures in place. Examples could include motion sensor floodlights, deadbolt locks, and a security system. As we all know, these aren’t always enough, but they are a necessary start.

Let’s get into the tactics.

Avoid/Escape

I know what you’re thinking. This is not what you want to do in the event your house is being broken into.

While many people don’t want to hear this, it is the safest answer. If you can safely get out of your house or barricade yourself in a room (armed, of course), that will be your safest bet. Arm yourself first, but if you can safely get out, I would recommend doing that. Get away or get out, call the police, and be prepared.

Fight

However, in many situations, this isn’t possible. Maybe you’ve got kids upstairs, the intruder knows you are home, or you aren’t going to be able to get out of the house. Whatever the case may be, there is a good chance you may have to engage the intruder.

When it comes to engaging the target, speed is the most important factor. Speed of acquiring the target, speed of engaging the target, and speed of re-engaging the target are all very important things to consider.

Target Acquisition

To increase your speed acquiring a target, there really is only one thing to do. Practice, practice, practice.

Go to the range and practice aiming down your sights and acquiring targets. Move your body around and move the target around. You don’t even have to go to the range. Do dry runs in your house or backyard, as long as you are certain the weapon is cleared.

Engaging the Target

It may seem simple. Aim and shoot. But, consider the fact that your life will be threatened and your adrenaline will be pumping. Do you think it might be possible to accidentally leave the safety on, or make a similar mistake?

This can be improved with practice, as well. Run through it as much as possible; it will eventually become muscle memory.

Part of this could be taking the target by surprise. Anything that can give you a speed advantage should be considered. In a situation like this, being controlled but fast will keep you alive.

Now, keep in mind that you may have to re-engage a target that will likely be moving. Improving the speed at which you can do this also comes from practice. Practice acquiring targets, engaging the target, and cycling the weapon, if necessary. It is hard to replicate shooting a moving target, but the more time you have spent looking down your sights, the easier it will be.

Protecting Yourself

Obviously, it would be ideal to engage an intruder in a plate carrier and Kevlar helmet. However, this isn’t always possible, so what other ways are there to protect yourself and those around you?

As most people who are familiar with weapons and ballistics are aware, there really isn’t much true cover inside a house. There are very few things that will actually stop a bullet in your house. However, concealing part of your body will give the intruder less to return fire at. If part of your body is concealed by a wall or something similar, this will make you much safer.

Another way to make yourself safer is to change the position from where you’re shooting. Taking a knee makes less of your body exposed, and makes it more difficult for an intruder to potentially return fire.

So, if you are able to quickly acquire and engage a target while part of your body is concealed, you will do a good bit in improving your safety.

However, where is that bullet going? Like we talked about before, there isn’t much in your house that will stop a bullet. So, while you are going over some potential courses of action, be sure to take into account exactly what and where you are shooting. Think about whether or not people may actually be behind the target you’re shooting at. This is the exact kind of thing that you would not think about in the moment. However, having somewhat of a plan will help.

Weapon Accessories

Some people swear up and down by their weapon accessories. I think that they can sometimes be helpful, but many people rely too heavily on them.

Weapon accessories can help you, but they cannot replace practice. Practice using your weapons. Use the accessories as accessories rather than necessities.

However, with that said, there are two accessories that I think are very helpful in a situation like this. A quality sight can make it much easier to acquire a target. A red dot style sight that you can shoot with both of your eyes open can give your weapon point and shoot ease of use, which could be extremely useful in the middle of the night or when your adrenaline is pumping.

The other accessory that I think would be helpful is a bright flashlight. While being directly in front of your target is certainly less than ideal, a very bright flashlight can buy you some extra time. It could disorient your target, and give you enough time to acquire and engage the target.

One Final Tactic to Consider

If for any reason you have to clear a room in your house, there is one basic tactic to check out. Look up the “slicing the pie” tactic on YouTube. It is easier to see it in a video than read it in words. However, it is a simple tactic that can help you to clear a room if you need and will keep you safe.

What other home defense tactics have you been taught? Be sure and leave a comment below!

The Very Best Ammo For Home Defense

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The Very Best Ammo For Home Defense

Image source: Pixabay.com

Previously, I wrote about my basic layout for home defense, and why I like to have my weapons laid out in such a specific way. In this article, I’ll go over my thought process for choosing ammunition, and what types of ammo I have throughout my house.

Generally speaking, I select the type of ammunition that will inflict the most damage if I ever have to use it.

Shotgun

As I’ve said before, in my opinion, home defense starts and ends with a shotgun. It is absolutely the best weapon that I own for self-defense. My 12-gauge shotgun is a permanent fixture above my nightstand, and it’s always loaded with Winchester PDX1 shells.

There are plenty of different home-defense shotguns, both slugs and buckshot. Choosing the best load for your shotgun should be based on your use. If your shotgun is primarily meant for close-range engagements, buckshot would be your best bet. If you might use it at further distances, a slug would perform admirably.

You Don’t Need A Firearms License For This Weapon!

My personal favorite round is Winchester PDX1. This specific round has three buck pellets surrounding a slug. The result is an extremely deadly round. However, there are plenty of different shotgun rounds that could meet your needs.

Handgun

Regardless of caliber, hollow-point ammunition is going to be your best bet for defense purposes. Jacketed hollow-point ammunition expands on impact, as opposed to traditional target ammo, which does not. For defense use, this means that once the bullet hits your target, it will expand and impact more tissue. As a result, the round is much deadlier. While it is more expensive, hollow point ammunition is worth it for defense purposes.

Rifle

There are a few different types of rounds used in 5.56 ammo that are used in AR-15s. There is the standard full-metal-jacket ball ammo, hollow-point ammo, and also barrier blind ammunition. Barrier blind is a relatively new type of ammunition, and represents the most modern ammunition technology. Based on initial testing, barrier-blind ammunition performs very well.

However, high-grain ball ammo and hollow-point ammo also perform well in AR platform firearms. In other rifles, most quality hunting ammunition will perform well for home defense use.

Overall, the number of different types of ammunition available can be overwhelming. As a general rule of thumb, more propellant means a faster bullet, which means a deadlier round. However, there are a few other things to keep in mind. Modern improvements in ammunition, such as jacketed hollow point and barrier-blind ammunition, perform extremely well. They do an excellent job expanding when they hit their target. This expansion creates a much deadlier round then the traditional full-metal-jacket range ammo. When it comes to shotguns, buckshot is probably your best bet, but once again, there is modern ammunition that has both a rifled slug and buckshot built into it.

What do you prefer for home defense ammo? Share your thoughts in the section below:

The 5 Best Tactical Shotguns For Home Defense

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The Very Best Tactical Shotguns For Home Defense

I love my guns, but at the end of the day, there are very few that really matter to me. The AR-15s, AK-47s, and other “fun guns” are great, but don’t serve much of a purpose to me. However, if you want to talk about a weapon that does serve an essential purpose to me, it would be my home defense shotgun.

I have owned and tried more tactical-style shotguns than I can remember. This is one firearm that I don’t mind spending extra money on, or doing a ton of testing until I find the perfect one.

In my opinion, a shotgun is absolutely necessary for home defense. However, in order to be a viable option for home defense, I think a few criteria must be met.

First and foremost, the shotgun must be reliable. In a home defense situation, being able to count on the weapon is absolutely paramount. There is no way around that.

Second, a fast cycle rate is important to me. It gives me some peace of mind that I am able to re-engage the target if necessary. A commonly held opinion is that semiautomatic shotguns are not as reliable as pump action shotguns. In my opinion, this is both true and not true. There are more internal parts that can go wrong, but there are plenty of quality, reliable semiautomatic shotguns available.

Third, the sights must be good, or must have an easy way to mount my own sights if I choose to do so. Generally speaking, I prefer to put my own sight on it, as it’s probably going to be a sight I can easily see at night.

You Don’t Need A Firearms License For This Weapon!

Last, I generally prefer a shotgun with a pistol grip. My opinion is that these are more mobile and controlled, although it’s not a necessity. I know that not everyone will agree with me on that, but in my personal experience, I have found them to be more mobile.

So, here is a list of some of my favorite home defense shotguns. All of these are 12-gauge shotguns that I would load with Winchester PDX Defender shells.

1. Benelli M4 Tactical

It feels wrong putting a semiautomatic shotgun first on my list, but once you’ve used this one, you will understand why. Although it does have a pretty steep price tag, this is an absolutely awesome weapon that meets all of my criteria. It has a 5+1 magazine capacity, and weighs in at 7.8 pounds.

The weapon is extremely reliable, as I haven’t had any issues with cycling any different shells. It also cycles extremely fast. The sights that come on it are decent, and they are fully adjustable. You can also get tritium inserts for the standard sights, which will make them easier to see at night. However, it also has a Picatinny rail system, so you can mount your own sights to it if easily.

If you like the sound of this one, but are a little afraid of the pricetag, the Benelli M2 is another good option that is less expensive.

2. Mossberg Model 500 Tactical – SPX

This pump action shotgun from Mossberg is a beast. Similar to the Benelli M4, it has a pistol grip and a 5+1 capacity. However, this one is a pump-action, which many will find enjoyable. Some folks will tell you that simply pumping the action on a shotgun is enough to scare off a would-be intruder.

This shotgun also has some good standard sights. It has a fiber optic front sight, which allows for excellent visibility. Just like the M4 though, it also has a Picatinny rail if you want to mount your own sight.

The pistol grip and pump are ergonomic, and allow for plenty of grip and control. The stock of this one is fully adjustable, which is an advantage over the M4. It is also a little bit lighter than the M4.

As far as pump-action shotguns go, this one is my favorite. It is comfortable to hold and shoot, it is reliable, and the price is reasonable.

3. Remington 870 Express Synthetic Tactical 7 Round

I have written before about how much I love the Remington 870. In my opinion, it is the best shotgun on the market. They are extremely reliable and will last forever. The only reason that this one isn’t higher on my list is because it doesn’t have a pistol grip.

This pump action from Remington has a 6+1 capacity and weighs 7.5 pounds. It is extremely sturdy, and the action will work every single time for years and years.

Unfortunately, I wasn’t crazy about the single bead sight on this one, and it doesn’t have the Picatinny rail. The sights aren’t awful; it just took some time getting used to them.

4. Mossberg 930 Tactical – 8 Shot SPX

I’m generally not a huge Mossberg fan, but their home defense offerings are awesome. The 930 Tactical is a semiautomatic shotgun, and the 8-Shot SPX version has a pistol grip as well as an 8-shell capacity. This extra shell could make a huge difference. It weighs in at 7.75 pounds.

When I shot this shotgun, I thought it was pretty smooth and enjoyable to shoot. However, I definitely don’t think that this action is as smooth as the Benelli. While it never gave me a reason to be concerned, I still think it’s worth mentioning.

Just like the other Mossberg shotgun, this one has excellent sights, and also has a Picatinny rail. While the stock isn’t adjustable like we saw on the 500 Tactical, this weapon is still pretty comfortable to carry and maneuver with. I would feel more than comfortable with this weapon for defending my home, especially when considering that it’s available at a reasonable price.

5. Benelli SuperNova Tactical Pump

Last on our list is a pump-action shotgun from Benelli. This one has a 6-shell capacity and weighs 7.6 pounds. It has a stock and pistol grip that is very similar to the M4.

The action of this shotgun is silky smooth and it has very little recoil compared to its competition. If you have ever fired a Benelli pump action, you know what I’m talking about, I’m sure.

The sights on this one are good, but unfortunately there isn’t a Picatinny rail. You can have either open rifle sights or a ring style sight. Just like the M4, there are optional tritium inserts for the sights.

Overall, this is an excellent quality pump action that is extremely affordably priced. It would do great for a home defense shotgun, especially considering the pistol grip.

What would you add to our list? Share your tips in the section below: 

The 5 Best Tactical Shotguns For Home Defense

The Very Best Tactical Shotguns For Home Defense

I love my guns, but at the end of the day, there are very few that really matter to me. The AR-15s, AK-47s, and other “fun guns” are great, but don’t serve much of a purpose to me. However, if you want to talk about a weapon that does serve an essential purpose to me, it would be my home defense shotgun.

I have owned and tried more tactical-style shotguns than I can remember. This is one firearm that I don’t mind spending extra money on, or doing a ton of testing until I find the perfect one.

In my opinion, a shotgun is absolutely necessary for home defense. However, in order to be a viable option for home defense, I think a few criteria must be met.

First and foremost, the shotgun must be reliable. In a home defense situation, being able to count on the weapon is absolutely paramount. There is no way around that.

Second, a fast cycle rate is important to me. It gives me some peace of mind that I am able to re-engage the target if necessary. A commonly held opinion is that semiautomatic shotguns are not as reliable as pump action shotguns. In my opinion, this is both true and not true. There are more internal parts that can go wrong, but there are plenty of quality, reliable semiautomatic shotguns available.

Third, the sights must be good, or must have an easy way to mount my own sights if I choose to do so. Generally speaking, I prefer to put my own sight on it, as it’s probably going to be a sight I can easily see at night.

You Don’t Need A Firearms License For This Weapon!

Last, I generally prefer a shotgun with a pistol grip. My opinion is that these are more mobile and controlled, although it’s not a necessity. I know that not everyone will agree with me on that, but in my personal experience, I have found them to be more mobile.

So, here is a list of some of my favorite home defense shotguns. All of these are 12-gauge shotguns that I would load with Winchester PDX Defender shells.

1. Benelli M4 Tactical

It feels wrong putting a semiautomatic shotgun first on my list, but once you’ve used this one, you will understand why. Although it does have a pretty steep price tag, this is an absolutely awesome weapon that meets all of my criteria. It has a 5+1 magazine capacity, and weighs in at 7.8 pounds.

The weapon is extremely reliable, as I haven’t had any issues with cycling any different shells. It also cycles extremely fast. The sights that come on it are decent, and they are fully adjustable. You can also get tritium inserts for the standard sights, which will make them easier to see at night. However, it also has a Picatinny rail system, so you can mount your own sights to it if easily.

If you like the sound of this one, but are a little afraid of the pricetag, the Benelli M2 is another good option that is less expensive.

2. Mossberg Model 500 Tactical – SPX

This pump action shotgun from Mossberg is a beast. Similar to the Benelli M4, it has a pistol grip and a 5+1 capacity. However, this one is a pump-action, which many will find enjoyable. Some folks will tell you that simply pumping the action on a shotgun is enough to scare off a would-be intruder.

This shotgun also has some good standard sights. It has a fiber optic front sight, which allows for excellent visibility. Just like the M4 though, it also has a Picatinny rail if you want to mount your own sight.

The pistol grip and pump are ergonomic, and allow for plenty of grip and control. The stock of this one is fully adjustable, which is an advantage over the M4. It is also a little bit lighter than the M4.

As far as pump-action shotguns go, this one is my favorite. It is comfortable to hold and shoot, it is reliable, and the price is reasonable.

3. Remington 870 Express Synthetic Tactical 7 Round

I have written before about how much I love the Remington 870. In my opinion, it is the best shotgun on the market. They are extremely reliable and will last forever. The only reason that this one isn’t higher on my list is because it doesn’t have a pistol grip.

This pump action from Remington has a 6+1 capacity and weighs 7.5 pounds. It is extremely sturdy, and the action will work every single time for years and years.

Unfortunately, I wasn’t crazy about the single bead sight on this one, and it doesn’t have the Picatinny rail. The sights aren’t awful; it just took some time getting used to them.

4. Mossberg 930 Tactical – 8 Shot SPX

I’m generally not a huge Mossberg fan, but their home defense offerings are awesome. The 930 Tactical is a semiautomatic shotgun, and the 8-Shot SPX version has a pistol grip as well as an 8-shell capacity. This extra shell could make a huge difference. It weighs in at 7.75 pounds.

When I shot this shotgun, I thought it was pretty smooth and enjoyable to shoot. However, I definitely don’t think that this action is as smooth as the Benelli. While it never gave me a reason to be concerned, I still think it’s worth mentioning.

Just like the other Mossberg shotgun, this one has excellent sights, and also has a Picatinny rail. While the stock isn’t adjustable like we saw on the 500 Tactical, this weapon is still pretty comfortable to carry and maneuver with. I would feel more than comfortable with this weapon for defending my home, especially when considering that it’s available at a reasonable price.

5. Benelli SuperNova Tactical Pump

Last on our list is a pump-action shotgun from Benelli. This one has a 6-shell capacity and weighs 7.6 pounds. It has a stock and pistol grip that is very similar to the M4.

The action of this shotgun is silky smooth and it has very little recoil compared to its competition. If you have ever fired a Benelli pump action, you know what I’m talking about, I’m sure.

The sights on this one are good, but unfortunately there isn’t a Picatinny rail. You can have either open rifle sights or a ring style sight. Just like the M4, there are optional tritium inserts for the sights.

Overall, this is an excellent quality pump action that is extremely affordably priced. It would do great for a home defense shotgun, especially considering the pistol grip.

What would you add to our list? Share your tips in the section below: 

I Store My Home-Defense Guns In 5 Different Rooms. Here’s Why.

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I Store My Home-Defense Guns In 5 Different Rooms. Here’s Why.

Image source: Pixabay.com

While I may be a bit over the top with my home defense preparation, I would rather be way overprepared than underprepared.

I’ve put a lot of thought into where weapons should be placed throughout my house. Each one is in a very specific location, and serves its own distinct purpose. The way that I have placed my weapons was based on a few different threat levels that I assessed. All total, I store weapons in five rooms.

The first threat level that I considered was an immediate threat. To me, an immediate threat constitutes someone actively breaking into my house. In this situation, I would like a firearm easily accessible and ready to rock. The most important weapon that I consider to be used against an immediate threat is a shotgun in the bedroom. My reasoning: I view the most dangerous situation to be someone breaking into my house in the middle of the night. I generally still have my daily carry weapon in my nightstand, so it’s easy to grab on the way out the door, but a shotgun permanently lives on the wall above my nightstand in a custom concealed weapon case. The reason that I decided to go with a shotgun in the bedroom is that I’m a pretty heavy sleeper, and in the event that someone is actively breaking into my house, I like the point-and-shoot ease-of-use of a shotgun.

Vicious Hand-Held Self-Defense Tool Doesn’t Require A License!

The next weapons that I considered for use against an immediate threat are handguns in the rooms that I am most frequently in. For this reason, I’ve got a revolver tucked away in my living room and in my kitchen. Similar to my shotgun, these are all concealed in some type of box or case that is easy to open.

To me, a secondary threat constitutes someone lingering suspiciously around my house or poking around my vehicles too much. It’s a situation where I’m not planning on immediately engaging a threat, but I’m getting the feeling that something is wrong and I want to be ready in the event the unpredictable happens. For a secondary threat, I want a handgun with a higher ammunition capacity near the back door and the garage door of my house, so that I can easily grab it and throw it in a sweatshirt pocket or the waist of my pants to see what’s going on. These are concealed in boxes on shelves.

The last threat level that I considered is the extremely unlikely chance that I’m engaged in some type of firefight or a gunfight that moves out of the house. To me, these are the kind of weapons that can be tucked away in a closet or in a safe, because it’s unnecessary for me to have them immediately accessible. In my situation, I have my AR-15 with three loaded magazines in my closet.

Lastly, I will touch on safety. A headline we see all too frequently involves young children getting a parent’s weapon and accidentally harming or killing someone – perhaps themselves. Since I don’t have any children, I have absolutely no qualms leaving my weapons completely ready to go. Every single weapon in my house has a round in the chamber, with the exception of the AR, as I don’t classify that threat level as requiring immediate action. However, as soon as I do have kids, things will be different. I’ll still keep the magazines loaded, but I will refrain from keeping a round in the chamber. A habit that I will have to break is simply leaving my daily carry weapon on my nightstand. I also will have to make sure all of my weapons are up high and even locked away where a young child can’t reach.

Like I said, I am probably over the top on home defense, but I feel that being overprepared is far superior to being underprepared. My biggest concern when it comes to home defense is being adequately prepared to engage any threat that may face me or my family.

Where do you keep your guns in your home? And if you have children, how do you keep your weapons out of reach? Share your home-defense tips in the section below:  

3 Reasons A Revolver Is The Ultimate Concealed Carry Weapon

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Taurus Judge Public Defender. Image source: Youtube

Before I get into explaining why I prefer carrying a revolver over a semiautomatic pistol, let me preface this by saying a few things. First, I would only make this recommendation for someone who accumulates range time. If you’re not the kind of person to spend time at the range working on your shooting, carrying a revolver is not for you. Shooting a wheel gun accurately takes range time. Accurate shooting is absolutely paramount while shooting a revolver, as you will have a decreased ammunition capacity when compared to a semiautomatic pistol. If you’re the type of person to carry, but not go shoot often, I would recommend carrying a semiautomatic pistol.

There are three main reasons I prefer carrying a revolver: versatility, reliability, and results.

You Don’t Need A Firearms License For This Weapon!

Concealable revolvers are much more versatile than concealable semiautomatic pistols. As a class of weapons, they range from very small, pocket-sized guns all the way up to guns that are capable of putting down bears while still being easily concealed. Many revolvers are able to shoot multiple different calibers, and available calibers range from .22LR all the way up to .45 Colt and .410 bore shotgun shells. This allows the shooter to fine-tune which load they prefer to carry and shoot. Plus, the fact that I regularly carry a weapon that is loaded with shotgun shells makes my heart happy.

My next reason for carrying a revolver is the reliability. Once upon a time, it was virtually impossible for a revolver to jam. I’ve since learned that it is, in fact, possible for the internals of a revolver to jam, but it is far less likely to happen. I have never had a revolver jam on me, but have had semiautomatic pistols jam on me on more than a few occasions at the range. Despite the fact that I clean and maintain my weapons, I have had multiple semiautomatic pistols jam. I would be terrified of being in a situation when I actually needed to use my carry weapon, and when I pulled the trigger, nothing happened. Carrying a revolver gives me some piece of mind. If nothing happens after the first pull, all I’ve got to do is pull the trigger again.

Another reason that I consider revolvers to be more reliable is that I find them easier to draw. Given the natural shape of a revolver, the grip is thinner than the cylinder. This creates a gap between my body and the grip of the weapon, which then makes it easier for me to draw it. I’ve found that with the square body of most semiautomatic pistols, I end up fumbling around for a second before I can get a good grip on it in order to draw it.

The last reason I prefer carrying a revolver is the results. As a whole, revolvers shoot heavier rounds at a faster speed than semiautomatic pistols do. My main comparisons when I was making the decision were .357 Magnum being compared to 9mm, and .44 Magnum being compared to .45 ACP. The revolver bullets are each around 15 grams heavier than their counterpart, and are shot with a great deal more velocity. Adding in the fact that revolvers are generally heavier than the semiautomatic they’re compared to is another plus, as it creates less recoil. Obviously, the exact numbers are dependent on the round selected, but as a general rule of thumb, revolver rounds are heavier, faster, and they create wider holes and deeper penetration.

At the end of the day, the perfect concealed carry weapon is dependent on the person carrying it, but these are my reasons for carrying revolvers over semiautomatic pistols. I find comfort in the fact that I know I can draw faster and shoot just as accurately, all while causing more damage with a revolver than I can with most semiautomatic pistols.

Do you agree or disagree? Share your thoughts in the section below: 

3 Military-Approved Techniques That Will Make You A Better Shooter

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3 Military-Approved Techniques That Will Make You A Better Shooter

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Editor’s note: The writer is an active duty officer in the military.

If you are new to shooting or are unhappy with your shooting abilities, here you will find some basic shooting techniques to become a better shot.

Becoming a better shooter takes more than simply going to the range and shooting. While that will probably help a little bit, the only way to improve is by changing your techniques – techniques I was taught early during my military service.

Since this article is aimed at both skilled shooters and beginners alike, I should say at the outset: Ensure that you have zeroed your weapon and know how to properly and safely operate it.

Proper shooting technique can be broken down into three main categories: shooting position, breathing and trigger squeeze.

Shooting Position

Shooting position refers to how you position your body and your weapon while you are shooting. With a long gun, there are a few key things to keep in mind. The weapon should be firmly positioned against your body, in the pocket between your shoulder and your chest. Your head should be pressed against the stock of the weapon in a comfortable spot that you can easily return to each time you shoot. Aiming down the sights becomes much easier and more natural when you position your head in the exact same way each time. Your non-firing hand should have a light grip, but also should be slightly pulling the weapon into your shoulder.

You Don’t Need A Firearms License For This Weapon!

With a handgun, your grip should be the exact same each time you shoot. There are many different ways to hold a handgun, and my recommendation would be to practice with all of them until you find what works best for you. Personally, I like to have both of my thumbs on the side of my pistol, pointing downrange. I also like to put a little tension on the weapon by pulling a little with my forward hand against my locked elbow. For me, this limits recoil and makes it easier to reacquire a target. As far as your body position, you want to have your elbows locked, and you should be in a slightly crouched position so that the weapon is at eye level. Similar to what was mentioned above, get used to shooting in the same body position every time, as it will make aiming come much easier. Usually, when someone has trouble aiming down the sights, it’s because of their body position. Regardless of weapon, get comfortable shooting in the same position. You’ll be surprised how easy it becomes to aim.

Breathing

The next step is breathing. While you are breathing and your arms are in your shooting position, they will naturally move up and down slightly. This causes your weapon to move up and down slightly, which throws off your aiming ability. There are two easy ways to fix this problem. Either hold your breath momentarily to steady your aim or shoot in between exhaling and inhaling. In a controlled situation, shooting between breaths is preferable, but in a high-stress situation, holding your breath will work, as well.

Trigger Squeeze

The final tip may be the most important. A good trigger squeeze will save you tons of heartache at the range. The fundamentals of a good trigger squeeze are a slow, controlled pull followed by a slow, controlled release. Jerking the trigger back will cause you to twitch the weapon slightly, which results in inaccuracy. Many people teach you to “pull the slack” out of the trigger, which means pulling the trigger back to the final positive block before the firing pin goes home. Practice on your unloaded weapon.

Most weapons have a slight stop in the trigger, right before it engages. After “pulling the slack” out of the trigger and then firing the weapon, keep the trigger held back momentarily. This prevents a jerky release, which once again moves the weapon slightly and interferes with your ability to continue looking down the sights to reacquire your target. Then, slowly release the trigger back to that positive block, ready to shoot again. One last tip on pulling the trigger – try not to anticipate the shot. If you are anticipating the recoil, you will jerk the weapon and have an inaccurate shot.

These three simple tips will almost certainly improve your shooting ability. When I just want to practice shooting, I usually shoot four rounds at a time, and judge each iteration to see what I need to improve. You will find that it gets easier and you improve each iteration that you shoot. Practicing shooting using these tips will allow you to develop muscle memory, so that in the event the unpredictable does happen, you will be ready to accurately engage the threat.

What advice would you add? Share your tips in the section below: