Your #1 Choice for Home Defense is... 
View this email in your browser
This is going to be a 12 Guage Love Letter, but I'll try not to get all Nicholas Sparks on you... I'm going to give you some good information about the most effective tool for Home Defense. The Shotgun. It's also the most overlooked, forgotten, neglected, and misunderstood firearm type that we sell. Those that know the Shotgun will tell you that it is their Go-To-Gun for their Castle Defense.  We want you to get know the Shotgun a little better.  We've also got some great news for you near the end of this newsletter, so stick with me here.
When explorers and pioneers first came to the Americas, the gun they brought with them was the Shotgun.  They used it to put meat on the table, for sport, and they used it for defense. They did it all with the Shotgun.  Here we are in 2016, and not only are we still using the shotgun for those same purposes, the shotgun has truly evolved to keep up with the times.  The modern shotgun is incredibly versatile.  If you had to pick just one gun today... the shotgun would be a wise choice because it's easily the most versatile firearm ever invented.  You can hunt hummingbirds to brown bears and everything in between with the same gun... all you need to do is pick the proper shell for the task.  Let's talk about the shotgun types first. 

There are three basic types of Shotguns:
Pump Action, Semi-Auto, and Break Open.

The Pump Action shotgun market is dominated by two makers - Remington and Mossberg.  This is the most down and dirty rivalry in the history shotguns... and one of the most bitter rivalries in the history of modern firearms. Ask anyone which they prefer, the Remington 870 or the Mossberg 500, and you could be in for some firebrand opinions!  That's what makes the Shooting Hunting and Outdoor Trade so interesting... We love to debate these things. Thankfully there are other valid options from the likes of Benelli, Winchester, Ithica, and others... All have their Pro's and Con's and their own fan bases.  Most people, when they hear the word "Shotgun", tend to think of a pump action shotgun.  It's been the Go-To type since the action was first invented in 1897 by the Patron Saint of Firearms, John Moses Browning.  Even today, they remain hugely popular with Shotgunners.

Semi-Auto Shotguns (Hat Tip to JMB again) are becoming the mainstream choice for competitive shooters, Military, and Law Enforcement. The big question about the Semi has always been "Is it going to be reliable?  Semi-Auto shotguns have become every bit as reliable as the pump actions, while being faster shooting, and easier on the shoulder.  A semi-auto tends to have about 20% less felt recoil than a pump action, thanks to that semi-auto action taking up some of that recoil force.  Softer, faster, easier, and just as reliable... this is why it's becoming the shotguns of choice with professional gunslingers.

The Break Open shotguns come in Single Shot, Over-Under, and Double Barrel configurations.  Single Shots tend to be inexpensive field tools used for hunting. Over-Unders with the two barrels sitting one on top of the other, tend to be the choice for Sporting purposes, like Trap and Skeet... But are making big in-roads with bird hunters.  The classic "Double Barrel" has the barrels in a Side by Side configuration, and are typically found in the hands of the Cowboy Action Shooters these days.  

There are a few Lever Action shotguns out there, but they tend to be either rare collectors guns, or curiosities that have no purpose other than to delight the owner. You can also get a break open three-barreled gun, if you like things to be both excessive and retro.  And if you want to go back into history, there are Volley Guns, and Drillings, which can have up to a dozen barrels... and Punt Guns which are shotguns the size of field artillery... and then there is Grape Shot and Canister Shot, which is a shotgun shell for actual Artillery...  But I digress... 
Modern Shotguns are chambered for different sized shells that are measured in by Gauge.  The Gauge is simply the diameter of the shell.  As you can see, the smaller the number, the larger the gauge, and the fatter the shell is. The fatter the shell is, the more payload can be put in the shell. The most common shotgun gauges in use these days are the .410, 20, and 12 gauge sizes.  Each gauge has their own popular lengths.

12 and 20 are the primary chambering for popular shotguns these days for both hunting and defensive use.   These shells can generally be found in different lengths, so that is something be aware of as well.

Common 12 Gauge shells come in 2 3/4", 3", and 3.5" lengths.  Most shotguns produced now days in 12 gauge can use 2 3/4" and 3" shells. There are other lengths out there, and we've seen them as short as 1". Shotgun ammunition made for defense tends to be in the 2 3/4" length.  

The .410 is unique, because it's not really measured by the same scale.  It's named ".410", but it's actually the same diameter as the .45 Colt.  Don't let this confuse you - it's just a name and not a actual measurement.  This happens a lot in the Gun Industry... Your .38 Special is actually only a .35 caliber - but that's another topic.
Now, the great thing about the Shotgun is the combination of effectiveness and simplicity.  They are extremely effective.  They are simple to use.  But that doesn't mean anyone can just pick one up and know how to use it.  Some practice is required.  In fact, because a shotgun is so effective, training and continued practice is highly recommended.  But don't let that intimidate you.  

The shotgun - in all its forms - are simple guns and learning the basics of how to use it correctly is easy, and it's a lot of fun.   But we have to first dispel two of the common Shotgun Myths:

1.  You just pump that action and criminals will flee in terror!  This really doesn't happen like that.  Yes, the sound and feel of a pump action shotgun is hugely satisfying.  Like the sound of a V-8 Muscle Car's exhaust... You know it means business.  The truth though, is that it also lets the criminal know where you are.  And they are not as afraid of you as you would think. If you are finally loading your gun when they can hear you - you are probably at a disadvantage. If the criminal hears and recognizes that sound, it could ignite the "Fight or Flight" response. Yes, they could run away. Or they could be suddenly emboldened and motivated to attack you.

2.  You don't have to aim a shotgun.  "Just level it the general direction".  You would be surprised how many hunters and competitive shooters really wished that was the case.  The truth is that it's still very easy to miss with a shotgun blast.  Especially at home defense distances.  A shotgun blast is not like a flood light... it doesn't fill the room with lead.  If it did - you wouldn't want to use one!  
When a shotshell is fired, the pellets are pretty much all held together in a "shot cup" that takes some distance before it opens and allows the pellets to fly free.  But even after they leave the cup, they are still mostly together for several yards.  Some shot cups are designed to stay with the shot for longer distances to insure tighter impact groups - or "Patterns" as it's called - at longer distances.   A tighter pattern is usually desired... that means more pellets into the target, where you wanted them to go.  More impact on the target.   And less pellets going where you didn't want them to go... in other words, not into the target.  This makes it much easier to miss with it.  This also lowers the liability of hitting what you didn't want to hit.  At close range, all those pellets could be hitting in one mass.  This is devastating power when used correctly!  But don't let this scare you.
The Ammunition Selection with a Shotgun makes all the difference.  This is where the shotgun's reputation for versatility comes from.  To simplify your shell selection, you can break down the shell types into three categories.  Bird Shot, Buck Shot, and Slugs.  Bird Shot uses much smaller pellets which allows more of them in the shell.#8 Shot is tiny, #7 is slightly bigger.  These are great for breaking Clay Pigeons for sport.  #6 and #5 are great for hunting smaller birds... BB and #4 are better for Turkey and Goose... With Bird Shot, the larger the number is, the smaller the pellet size.  
Then you get to Buck Shot. It gets it name from its purposes...  Hunting "Bucks". Buckshot sizes go from #4 Buck,  #3 Buck, #2 Buck, #1 Buck, Buck, 00 Buck, and 000 Buck... which all get bigger from #4 though 000.  

A Slug is just what it sounds like, a big chunk of lead.  There are a few different types of commonly used slugs.  A Fosters type, which has a hollow base to put the weight forward for stability.  A Brenneke type, which has the wadding connected to the solid slug to provide tail end drag for stability.  And then there are the Sabot type slugs, which are designed for use in rifled shotguns for long range hunting and are of no use for home defensive purposes.  So really you are looking for the Fosters or Brenneke type slugs for defensive uses.  In most cases, a slug is not desired.  A slug though would come into use if you are out on a larger property and need to hit something fifty yards or beyond.  If you take your shotgun with you in a vehicle, having a few slugs with you might not be a bad idea... but generally speaking, good old "00 Buck" is the load you want. 

The most common and preferred loading of 12 Gauge for defensive use is the 2 3/4" 00 Buck load.  Commonly called "Double Aught Buck".  They are typically 9 pellets per shell and each pellet is about .32 caliber.
Here's two common options, and good choices by the way... One is from Federal and the other from Hornady.  Two ammunition makers well known for making good quality ammunition.
The Federal Personal Defense load is a great option for those wanting less felt recoil.  It uses the Flight Control Wad, which gives it fantastic tight patterns at distance, and a one hole sledgehammer hit at close range.  The box says that the velocity is only 1145 Feet Per Second.  That's more than enough for self defense use at closer ranges.  The Hornady box show a velocity of a blisteringly fast 1600 FPS.  And the recoil on this will be sharper, but notice that it's only 8 pellets and not the typical 9.  This means less mass, so the recoil wont be bad at all.  

There are tons of different shells for whatever purpose you want to use the shotgun for.   Your Home Defense situation will dictate the considerations you need to make in choosing the right shell.   But have no fear - We can help you with that. 
Point Blank Range has a great selection of top choices for home defense shotguns.
Prices can start out under $400 dollars and can go up from there depending on what features and finishes you want.  We can help you find a shotgun that suites you and your application.  We would love to help you with this!

How long did it take you to learn how to play Checkers?  Pretty quick, right? How long did it take to get to be pretty good?  A little bit longer?  Shotguns are the same way. 
PBR-Matthews' In-House shotgun Instructor is Stacey Almond.  Stacey comes to PBR an accomplished Champion Shotgun Shooter.  Out of all the firearms types, and different shooting sports out there, the one she fell in love with is the Shotgun.   
You do not have to be an 800 Pound Gorilla to handle a 12 gauge.  What you do need to have though, is 1, an understanding of the gun and how it works. 2, an understanding of how to handle it.   3. the desire to do so.   
Come out to Point Blank Range, and bring #3 on that list... We'll provide you with the #1 and #2 items.  

Check the Training Calendars for the next Shotgun Courses:
Mooresville. And in  Matthews.
A lot of guys were not able to make it to our S&W Sales Event... We had an ear-full for making it only a few days long!  We heard you!
So here's what we did... we got in a bunch of those guns you guys were wanting and missed out on.  And we're going to run those same special sale prices on those guns again starting this Friday, the 29th of April and it's going to run through the entire month of May.
The M&P SPORT 2 for only $599.99
The M&P SHIELD 9mm for $379.99
And of course, these guns are backed by Point Blank Range's exclusive lifetime warranty.

Coming up in May:
  Point Blank Range is proud to host a special intensive two day training event. We are bringing in our good friend, Daniel Shaw, from out West to Point Blank Range – South Charlotte.  He's bringing his nationally recognized Handgun Vitals I and II course to PBR.

Copyright © 2016 Point Blank Range, All rights reserved.  
unsubscribe from this list