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The shotgun is the best firearm to protect your home and family.

This is true for several reasons:

  • A shotgun is extremely powerful at short ranges
  • It is difficult to miss with a shotgun
  • Shotgun shells do not penetate well through walls, decreasing the chance of injuring a friendly person by accident

The defensive shotgun should be 12ga, and should have a capacity of at least 6 shells.

You should practice with your shotgun to ensure that you can use it competently. You should have a sufficient quantity of shotgun shells on hand to be able to use your shotgun effectively during a conflict.

Shotgun Technology

Shotgun Gauge

An explanation of shotgun gauges.

Shotgun Choke

An explanation of shotgun chokes.

Shot Sizes

An explanation of shotgun shot sizes.

Shotgun Models

Benelli M4

When the U.S Marine Corps went shopping for a combat shotgun they bought a Benelli. Auto Regulating Gas-Operated System – ARGO The super dependable Inertia Driven system was a natural choice, but to fully equip a combat shotgun with night-vision scopes and other specialized equipment would add a lot of weight and could compromise the Inertia Driven system. To ensure reliability, Benelli engineers developed the ARGO system. With the ARGO system dual stainless steel, self-cleaning pistons mounted just in front of the chamber drive the action. It’s a simple and dependable system that eliminates the complex linkage, springs and heavy parts most other semi-autos depend on. The M4 comes standard with a Picatinny rail for optics, a ghost ring fully adjustable rear sight and fixed blade front sight; there is also a collapsible stock available as an accessory. The M4 is combat proven and U.S. Marine Corps tough; why would you depend on anything less?

Benelli M3

The M3 Convertible Auto/Pump is a fast cycling auto for slugs or buckshot or a pump gun for rubber ball or gas loads.

Benelli M2

The Benelli M2 Inertia Driven semi-auto is a no-nonsense shotgun that police and military the world over reach for when the chips are down. The M2 is available with a matte black synthetic stock, fully adjustable ghost-ring aperture rear sight and a military style fixed-blade front sight. In addition, the M2 is now available with a tactical ComforTech stock that reduces felt recoil by as much as 48% and more importantly lets you get back on target over 50% faster than other comparable shotguns for a quick second shot.

Winchester Model 1300 Defender

The Defender 8-Shot allows you to be prepared for any unseen obstacle that might come your way while in the backcountry. It’s easy to pack and carry, and handles both buckshot and rifled slugs easily. The rugged Defender 8-Shot features an eight-shot magazine capacity, 18″ cylinder bore barrel, non-glare metal surfaces and a lightweight composite stock and forearm. Choose from the full stock version with a removable front TRUGLO fiber optic sight, the pistol grip model, or the combo version with both pistol grip and full stock included.

Remington 870

The worlds most popular pump action shotgun.

Remington 11-87

Autoloading shotgun from Remington.

Remington 1100

Classic autoloading shotgun from Remington.

Mossberg 500

Mossberg 500 Persuader, Cruiser, and Mariner shotguns.

Maverick Model 88 Security

Maverck Model 88 8-Shot Security model features a 3″ chamber, 20″ Cylinder Bore fixed choke and a non-ported barrel. A rugged black synthetic stock and forearm, blued metal finish and a brass front sight bead are also included.

Browning Superposed

The first successful Over/Under shotgun.

Browning Cynergy

Browning’s “high-tech” Over/Under shotgun.

Shotgun Manufacturers


A division of Beretta which makes some of the worlds finest defense and military shotguns.


Manufacturer of the Mossberg 590 series of shotguns, including the Persuader, Cruiser, and Mariner.


Manufacturer of the Maverick 88 line of quality value-priced shotguns.


Manufacturer of the Remington 870 line of shotguns.


Manufacturer of the Winchester 1300 series of shotguns, including the Model 1300 Defender.


Manufacturer of fine sporting shotguns, including the Superposed and the Cynergy.


The worlds oldest firearms manufacturer.


Maker of quality over/under, side-by-side, and semi-auto shotguns.

Shotgun Fan Sites

HK’s Benelli M1 Super 90

Awesome semi-auto shotgun


The Saiga-12 self-loading smooth bored shotgun is intended for professional and sport hunting of small-and medium-size game under any climatic conditions. This shotgun is built on the famous AK-47 action that has been proven by years of very reliable combat action!

Books on Shotguns

Tactical Shotgun : The Best Techniques And Tactics For Employing The Shotgun In Personal Combat
Tactical Shotgun : The Best Techniques And Tactics For Employing The Shotgun In Personal Combat

In his second book on tactical weapons, Suarez sets the record straight on the true role of the shotgun in combat. He shows you what you need to know to defend your home, family or business, including multiple hostiles, low-light situations, moving targets and more.

Gunsmithing Shotguns : A Basic Guide to Care and Repair
Gunsmithing Shotguns : A Basic Guide to Care and Repair

Every hunter has a gun he wishes he could tune up, whether it’s the ugly old piece that shoots straight, or the beauty which can’t hit a thing. This book is, pure and simple, an attempt at expanding any hunter’s knowledge of gunsmithing. It’s an overview designed to provide insight, ideas, and techniques that will give the amateur gunsmith the confidence and skill to work on his own guns. In clear and accessible terms, Henderson explains everything from setting up the small gunsmithing shop to building special purpose guns. Topics covered include: shotgun types and maintenance; general trouble shooting; common problems; special challenges; stocks and woodworking; soldering and brazing; basic metal polishing; barrel work; blueing and plating; trigger work; scope mounting; recoil reduction tips; building a special purpose gun. Whether you hunt big game, small game, or birds, or participate in shooting games such as sporting days, competently working on your own guns can add a satisfying and useful dimension to your sport.

Gunsmithing: Shotguns
Gunsmithing: Shotguns

The third in a popular series by professional gunsmith Patrick Sweeney, Gunsmithing: Shotguns offers detailed step-by-step instructions for those who want to repair or upgrade their own shotguns.

Millions of Americans own shotguns and Sweeney tells them exactly how to repair common ailments such as broken stocks or chipped butt plates and more complicated repairs such as restoring and tuning a Winchester Model 97 for Cowboy Action Shooting.

Following in the footsteps of his other books on handguns and rifles, Sweeney also tells readers when to call a professional for help and what questions to ask before a professional gunsmith starts working on their shotgun. This is a valuable reference that will save the reader time and money on shotgun repairs.

  • Refinishing instructions for all major gun finishes.
  • Chapters on all styles of shotgun: pumps, self-loaders and double-barrels.
  • Step-by-step instructions with photos.

The Gun Digest Book of Firearms Assembly/Disassembly, Pt. V: Shotguns
The Gun Digest Book of Firearms Assembly/Disassembly, Pt. V: Shotguns

Shotgun owners will learn to carefully and successfully disassemble and reassemble popular shotguns for routine maintenance, cleaning, and barrel changing by using this indispensable updated reference. Wood ‘s book series on firearms disassembly and reassembly, the only series available, has been an essential and comprehensive reference for firearms enthusiasts for many years.

A total of 59 popular shotgun models are reviewed, including thirteen additional models since the last edition. More than 250 shotgun variants that are mechanically similar to those pictured are also covered.

Includes field stripping basics and a thorough explanation of all key take down and reassembly steps for each model. Each step is clearly photographed and includes easy to understand instructions. An index allows readers to quickly find specific models and cross reference mechanically similar variants.

  • Covers assembly/disassembly of 59 popular shotgun models, plus more than 250 mechanically similar variants
  • Lists field stripping basics and key take down and reassembly steps
  • More than 1,500 large, clear photos and illustrations accompany the detailed instructions

Carbine And Shotgun Speed Shooting : How To Hit Hard And Fast In Combat
Carbine And Shotgun Speed Shooting : How To Hit Hard And Fast In Combat

The only thing better than having a good repeating shotgun or intermediate-caliber semiautomatic carbine or rifle in a gunfight is the skill to deploy it quickly and effectively. In this book, firearms instructor Steve Moses tells you how to do just that. A commissioned peace officer and experienced competitive shooter with a Master Class International Defensive Pistol Association rating, Moses has an in-depth and esoteric understanding of the art of shooting defensive long guns. In this groundbreaking book, he breaks down the mechanics of speed shooting these weapons, from stance and grip to sighting, trigger control and more, presenting them in a concise and easily understood manner. Whether you wish to further your defensive, competitive or recreational shooting skills, you will find this book a welcome resource for learning to shoot carbines and shotguns with the speed and accuracy that are so critical at short distances – the range at which most lethal engagements take place.