A Green Beret’s Shotgun Review for Preppers
Good Day to all of you guys and gals out there in Ready Nutrition Reader-land! Today we’re going to review JJ’s favorite shotguns to recommend for our prepper community. What good are all of your supplies if you can’t protect them from bears, burglars, or would-be marauders when a collapse occurs? The two models for discussion are able to be used for home defense and also to put meat on your table as hunting weapons.
The first thing I wish to do is clear up any misconceptions that shotguns are too powerful to be used by the ladies. On the contrary: a shotgun is exactly what the lady of the house needs when “homey the clown” and his gang want to climb in through the window. My wife weighs about “a buck twenty,” and you should see her with a 12 gauge!
The shotgun’s versatility lies in the fact that it is a smoothbore firearm that can take either shells (with lead or steel shot), or slugs (basically a big lead bullet). The shotgun gives home defense a whole new meaning and adds heavy firepower to the prepper’s arsenal. I recommend 12 gauges only. The reason for this is because you can use smaller shot shells for small game, such as pheasant, waterfowl, or quail while not sacrificing size when “homey” visits.
The Remington Model 870 is one of the finest slide action shotguns ever produced in the United States. The 870 was introduced in the early 1950’s. Now it is available both in 12 and 20 gauges. The tubular magazine capacity is (3) 3″ Magnum shells or (4) 2 3/4″ shells. A magazine extension can be employed to give you a higher capacity, and there is a Special Riot-gun model for law enforcement available.
The 870 breaks down very easily for cleaning and servicing, and both of these functions can be accomplished with no difficulty. Rugged, reliable, and easy to use, the 870 saw service with our troops in the Vietnam War and yielded excellent results especially in CQB (close quarters battle). The shotgun is readily available with a polymer/synthetic stock, although JJ’s preference is the older models with wooden stocks.
Number 2 on the list (but JJ’s personal favorite) is the Mossberg Model 500 Series. The 500 was first produced in 1962, and all of the major branches of the United States Armed Forces adopted it for general issue in 1979. Later an offshoot, the Model 590 back in the late 1980’s, replaced it. Yes, the 500 is that good; in this author’s opinion, it is the finest shotgun dollar-for-dollar and performance wise that has ever been made. Barrels for the Model 500 are interchangeable. Isn’t that a nifty little fact that may help you make a decision?
This pump action shotgun is reliable, I’m here to tell you: it can take a tremendous beating and still perform. On this take a not: accessorizing is the key to success. A side mounted “deck” to hold an extra half dozen shells is optimal. The Model 500 can also be fitted with pistol grips, single point sling, and heat shield. As mentioned earlier, the ladies will have no trouble at all handling these two excellent pieces once they practice with them and move past the initial experience of the weapon recoil. Pads for the stock-end are available to help cushion the shoulder. The reasons these weapons are great for home defense are threefold:
- Accuracy: With 00 buck you just point and shoot and hold that shotgun barrel on your target. You’ll be accurate, believe me.
- Power: Ladies, King Kong himself coming through the front door will be your doormat after you “zap” that big bug with the 12 gauge. He’ll be down and done: your two goals for engagement.
- Noise: Homey will go down, and his buddy-clowns will hear…and then fear…when the Mrs. shows those jerks how a momma bear defends the cave and cubs.
These are great shotguns and excellent for use by the whole family once everyone is familiarized and trained in their use. They can be employed (as mentioned earlier) for both home defense and for hunting. Your optimal loads for home defense are 00 Buck and slugs, the latter being better to stop them at a slight distance. A case of this is where “the Humungous” and crew from “The Road Warrior” are pulling into your driveway and you are in a “Castle Doctrine” State. Clear on the right and left? Switch your selector switch to fire…and watch your lanes!
There are also plenty of accessories you can add on to the shotgun, such as attachable and detachable mag lights, laser devices, and IR aids. Another investment you may wish to make is a good shotgun scabbard that mounts to your rucksack/backpack. Think of the movie “The Book of Eli” and remember: every second counts. Ladies and gents, these two shotguns will serve you in good stead. We at ReadyNutrition would love to hear from any of you who are already using one or both of the models recommended. Be safe and keep your home and family safer. Hope these tips help you to do so, and you guys and gals have a great day!
Jeremiah Johnson is the Nom de plume of a retired Green Beret of the United States Army Special Forces (Airborne). Mr. Johnson was a Special Forces Medic, EMT and ACLS-certified, with comprehensive training in wilderness survival, rescue, and patient-extraction. He is a Certified Master Herbalist and a graduate of the Global College of Natural Medicine of Santa Ana, CA. A graduate of the U.S. Army’s survival course of SERE school (Survival Evasion Resistance Escape), Mr. Johnson also successfully completed the Montana Master Food Preserver Course for home-canning, smoking, and dehydrating foods.
Mr. Johnson dries and tinctures a wide variety of medicinal herbs taken by wild crafting and cultivation, in addition to preserving and canning his own food. An expert in land navigation, survival, mountaineering, and parachuting as trained by the United States Army, Mr. Johnson is an ardent advocate for preparedness, self-sufficiency, and long-term disaster sustainability for families. He and his wife survived Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath. Cross-trained as a Special Forces Engineer, he is an expert in supply, logistics, transport, and long-term storage of perishable materials, having incorporated many of these techniques plus some unique innovations in his own homestead.
Mr. Johnson brings practical, tested experience firmly rooted in formal education to his writings and to our team. He and his wife live in a cabin in the mountains of Western Montana with their three cats.
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