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Note: the material presented on this page cannot be regarded as promotion of firearms. The aim of this article is just providing awareness of some shotgun models with their basic characteristics for educational purposes. We warn our readers that shotguns can cause potential danger to the people and must be kept only in specially equipped storage places admitting no access to unauthorized persons and children. All the actions connected with the purchase/sale and possession of shotguns must be taken only in agreement with current firearms laws or penal legislation. Anyhow, we don�t impel you to own guns to avoid possible troubles. If you however decide to purchase shotgun, check your local gun laws before. This site has never been associated with any manufacturer of weapons or ammunition.

Shotguns For Self-Defense

   Shotguns are extremely powerful weapons. The use of them is usually considered as the last line of self-defense, foremost home defense, when the application of deadly force is inevitable or firmly justifiable. Shotguns are generally quite imposing weapons, so even only the picking up a shotgun by a defender might put an intruder to flight. Anyway, if you worry about securing yourself, your family and your house, you should provide your arsenal with a reliable shotgun.
   Recommended type of a defensive shotgun - 12- or 20-gauge pump-action (Mossberg 500, Winchester 1300, Remington 870) or semi-auto shotgun (Saiga, Franchi SPAS-12) with a short barrel (18" or slightly more). The shorter barrel is better to operate in a constrained conditions (e.g. tight spaces of a house). The 12- gauge is seemed to be optimal due to its obvious versatility and a power. Pump-action shotguns are probably the most popular among the self-defenders because of their high reliability and easiness of operation. They can be kept in a relatively safe conditions: with a loaded magazine and an empty chamber and can be brought into action very quickly, possibly more quickly in comparison with the semi-auto shotguns. It is a point of no little importance that the pump-action shotguns require less care as compared to semi-auto models.
   Now we'll examine some of the shotgun models which are particularly worthy of note.

Featuring: Mossberg 500 Persuader Pump-Action Shotgun, Winchester 1300 Defender Pump-Action Shotgun, Remington 870 Pump-Action Shotgun, Ithaca 37 Classic Pump-Action Shotgun, Franchi SPAS-12 Semi-Automatic/Pump-Action Shotgun, Saiga-12 Semi-Automatic Shotgun, Protecta Assault Shotgun.

Mossberg 500 Persuader Pump-Action Shotgun (USA)

Mossberg 500 shotgun
Mossberg 500>

   Gauge - 12; Chamber - 76 mm (3"); Barrel length - 470 mm (18.5") ; Capacity - 6 (underbarrel tube magazine); Choke - 0 mm (cylinder bore); Weight ~ 3.2 kg (7 lbs).

   Mossberg 500 shotgun appear to be remarkable combination of modern design, custom-type features and affordability. It's one the most popular U.S.-made pump-action shotguns all over the world due its high versatility, accuracy and reliability. Mossberg 500 Persuader model - it's likely everything you need from the defensive gun - perfectly reliable mechanism, barrel of optimal length, high magazine capacity, good balance and high-impact synthetic stock. Barrels of Mossberg 500 are interchangeable without tools, which is very convenient. Undoubtedly, Mossberg 500 shotgun is a perfect choice for self defense. Moreover, Mossberg 500 Persuader is quite inexpensive.

Winchester 1300 Defender Pump-Action Shotgun (USA)

Winchester 1300 Defender shotgun
Winchester 1300

   Gauge - 12; Chamber - 76 mm (3"); Barrel length - 457 mm (18"); Capacity - 8 (underbarrel tube magazine); Choke - 0 mm (cylinder bore); Overall length - 1003 mm; Weight - 2.95 kg (6.5 lbs).

   Talking about the defensive shotgun, we can't set aside Winchester 1300 Defender model. Winchester 1300 Defender are truly multi-purpose shotguns, each with a solid reputation for toughness and outstanding reliability. Winchester 1300 Defender model is actually what the every self-defender dreams of: perfect reliability and accuracy, magazine of extended capacity, non-glare metal surfaces and high-impact composite stock and forearm, reasonable price. Winchester 1300 Defender shotgun is available in both 12 and 20 gauge.

Remington 870 Pump-Action Shotgun (USA)

Remington 870 shotgun
Remington 870

   Gauge - 12; Chamber - 70 mm (2 3/4"), 76 mm (3"); Barrel length - from 355 mm (14") to 533 mm (21") ; Capacity - 5-8 (underbarrel tube magazine); Weight - up to 3.5 kg (7.7 lbs).

   Remington 870 shotgun gained a worldwide popularity during the last 50 years of its existence. Remington 870 - multi-purpose model, available in many various configurations and produced for the police needs, security, hunting and self-defense. The shotgun is remarkable due to its high reliability, perfect functionality and nice design. Like Mossberg 500 or Winchester 1300 Defender, Remington 870 shotguns are available in various gauges - not only in 12 gauge. Remington 870 shotguns may be equipped with sights of different types, including laser red dot sight.

Ithaca 37 Classic Pump-Action Shotgun (USA)

Ithaca 37 shotgun
Ithaca 37

   Gauge - 12; Chamber - 76 mm (3"); Barrel length - 610 mm (24"), 660 mm (26") , 710 mm (28"); Capacity - 4 (underbarrel tube magazine); Choke - Improved Cylinder, Modified, Full; Overall length - 1245 mm (49") (28" barrel); Total weight - 3.3 kg (7.30 lbs) (28" barrel).

   Ithaca 37 Classic model - one of the oldest pump-action shotguns still in production. High-grade wood is precisely fitted for stock and forend, and the ringtail forend has an excellent feel in the hand. Ithaca 37 Classic has cut checkering and traditional Ithaca recoil pad. Ithaca 37 shotguns of 16 and 20 gauge are also produced. All barrels have interchangeable choke tubes, but choke-bored barrels are available at an additional charge.

Franchi SPAS-12 Semi-Automatic/Pump-Action Shotgun (Italy)

SPAS-12 shotgun
Franchi SPAS-12

   Gauge - 12; Chamber - 70 mm (2 3/4"); Barrel length - 546 mm (21.5"); Capacity - 8 (underbarrel tube magazine); Overall length - 1041 mm; Weight - 4.4 kg (9.7 lbs).

   SPAS (Special Purpose Assault Shotgun) - double-acting shotgun, which combines gas operated semi-auto with pump-action mechanism. It found a wide application for the needs of police, special forces and civilians because of its reliability and versatility. SPAS-12 can be easily switched between semi-auto and pump-action mode or vice versa by pressing the special button, so you don't have to worry if your cartridges appear less powerful than it's required for the steady auto-reloading. In spite of being popular, the model has evident drawbacks - the surplus weight, poor balance and expensiveness.

IZH-43KH (Baikal) Double-Barreled Shotgun (Russia)

IZH-43KH Baikal shotgun
IZH-43 (Baikal)

   Gauge - 12; Chamber - 70 mm (2 3/4"); Barrel length - 510 mm (20"); Capacity - 2; Chokes - 0.0/0.0 mm (cylinder bore); Weight ~ 3.3 kg (7.3 lbs).

   The standard double-barreled shotgun with an external hammers, which allows user to keep the gun loaded without anxiety as in the case of the shotguns with internal hammers. IZH-43KH Baikal shotgun has the plain design without any sophisticated elements, which makes this model quite reliable in use. IZH-43KH was specially designed for the cowboy shooting, but the model is also perfectly suitable for self-defense, particularly home defense. The shotgun is reasonable priced and easy-to-operate.

TOZ-106 Small-Sized Magazine Shotgun (Russia)

TOZ-106 magazine shotgun

   Gauge - 20; Chamber - 70 mm (2 3/4"); Barrel length - 250 mm (9.8"); Capacity - 2 (4); Length with a folded buttstock - 530 mm; Overall length - 820 mm; Weight - 2.5 kg (5.5 lbs).

   TOZ-106, single-barrel magazine shotgun with folding buttstock, is one of the shortest serially produced shotguns in the world. TOZ-106 is an example of bolt-action design that is unusual for shotguns. TOZ guys designed this model especially for the countries, where pistols and revolvers are prohibited for civilian market. It is obvious, that the shotgun is completely ineligible for hunting, but this model was naturally born for self-defense and security purposes.
Note: TOZ-106 shotguns cannot be distributed on US market.

Saiga-12 Semi-Automatic Shotgun (Russia)

Saiga-12 semi-automatic shotgun

   Gauge - 12; Chamber - 76 mm (3"); Barrel length - 430/580 mm (17/22.8"); Muzzle adapters - 0.0/0.5/1.0 mm; Capacity - 5 or 8 (box magazine); Overall length - no more than 1150 mm; Modifications with folding buttstock available; Weight - 3.5-3.8 kg (7.7-8.4 lbs).

   The shotgun was developed on the basis of legendary Kalashnikov assault rifle and inherited both AK design and outstanding reliability. Due to their characteristics, Saiga shotguns gained a wide popularity among self-defenders. Saiga shotgun is reloaded automatically due to the energy of powder combustion gases bled from the barrel bore through the barrel port and is used to deliver only the single shots. The gas motive unit is adjustable to match the parameters of internal ballistics inherent to the standard cartridges and "Magnum" cartridges, as well. For the purpose of diversifying operational capabilities, Saiga shotgun may be equipped with muzzle adapters of different chokes, including the muzzle adapter "Paradox".
   Saiga-12 is the kind of a shotgun you can always rely on - it allows you keeping situation under your control even if a dozen of armed bastards are gonna wreck your house into the small pieces.
   The 20 and .410 gauge Saiga versions are also available and became popular as defensive guns. A lot of people consider powerful, well balanced, relatively lightweight and producing moderate recoil Saiga 20K as perfect shotgun for self defense in an automobile.

Saiga-20 (20 gauge) Semi-Automatic Shotgun

Saiga-20 - 20 gauge semi-auto shotgun

Saiga-410 (410 g.) Semi-Automatic Shotgun

Saiga-410 - 410 gauge semi-auto shotgun

Protecta Assault Shotgun (South Africa)

Protecta shotgun

   Gauge - 12; Chamber - 70 mm (2 3/4"); Barrel length - 304 mm (12") (other lengths also available); Capacity - 12; Length with folded buttstock - 500 mm; Full length - 800 mm; Weight - 4.5 kg (10 lbs).

   Protecta - extremely impressive terrifying shotgun historically designed for the needs of special forces. The distinctive feature of the shotgun is the rotatory cylinder magazine of a large capacity. The reloading of Protecta shotgun is carried out manually by the movement of the front grip connected with magazine rotatory mechanism. The spent shells are ejected automatically from the chamber at the moment of the next shot by using a small amount of powder combustion gases. The loading of the empty magazine is realized by means of the special loading gate. Due to its short unnoticeable recoil, Protecta can be successfully used in all kinds of tactical shooting. If you want to have very impressive weapon with great firepower and high magazine capacity, get yourself Protecta shotgun!

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