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Let me begin by saying that I'm very new to the shotgun world. I recently bought a hand gun for self defense and looking to purchase a shotgun (20 gauge, my wife will also use it and I have medical problems in my chest and shoulders) for the same reason.

I spend a couple hours on the web learning the basics about shotguns and shotshells. I'm looking for a decent price ($300) shotgun and after brousing the web thought the Winchester 1300 Defender, 12 gauge would be a good choice. Your thoughts?

Also on what load to use for self defense? It seems to me something like the buckshot, 3 buck, 24 pellets, 3 inch?

Your thoughts and ideas would be greatly appriciated.

I just found this sight so I'm off now to spend another couple hours reading through it.
 

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OK, I figured buy now one of the regulars would have told me to look down a little ways and there was already a post about the Defender 1300. Guess I should have looked around a little more before posting.

I would still like to hear thoughts on what ammo to use.

Also, what would be a reasonable price (suggested retail is $335) and are they generally available?
 

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I've had a Defender for a few months now, and can hardly complain at all. Only gripe is that the finish on the reciever scratches off easily, but that is something that doesn't affect the function, so it's really no big deal.

Any ammo will work fine in it, from bird to buck to slugs, but for home defense, anything from #4 to 000 buck will be perfect. Handles the 3" magnums well, but kicks like a mule. 2.75" shells should be perfect for any home defense situation great gun for a good price, should be able to pick up one for $300 at the most. got mine for $270 at Big 5, which seems to always have sales on them.

Fun to blast clays with it too :D
 

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az-ar, thanks for the input. Is yours 12 or 20 gauge? Why I ask is because I plan on getting the 20 gauge so there is less kick, right? Should an average size women be able to fire the 20 gauge with the butt under her arm braced between the elbow and ribs? Don't mean to ask soooo many questions but this is how I learn and try to do it before laying down $$$$ on the table and finding out it don't work/do what I wanted. Last question (for the moment), what is Big 5?

Thanks again,
Tom
 

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there is nothing wrong with a 20 gauge gun. I got a mossberg 500 bantam as a child and depending on the load it will and wont kick.

Also. I recently bought a Winchester 1300 8 shot defender 12 gauge with pistol grip. since with a pistol grip its not going to impact your body as your arms will absorb the recoil.

Winchester also makes the 1300 defender in a 20 gauge, non pistol grip model. and if it kicks too hard you can move down to smaller loads.

I found a company from mexico name aquila and they make mini shot shells for 12 gauge that are 1.5 inches long. I can carry 12 in the magazine, and they wont kick as hard.

good luck, I hope I helped with your search for the perfect gun.
-Tim
 

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my 1300 is a great gun when I use either winchester AA,or winchester high brass,it wont cycle if not,otherwise I hate the gun.My 500 on the other hand has always been a good gun,the worst ammo possible or the best,it functions great.
 

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i have a 12ga defender with a 6 shot side saddle. i keep Winchester Ranger low recoil 00 buck/9 pellets in the side saddle. i never keep it loaded. 20 ga is still very powerful at close range.

i think the defenders retail for about $250 or less. i go mine at a pawn shop in like-new condition with the wood forearm and stock for $169.

my gf has shot it a few times. we'll set cans out about 10yds. she's about 5'2" and the stock is too long for her to hold properly. she just puts it under her arm, point the barrel in the general direction and she gets close to 50% of them.

hope this helps
 
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