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hello all , i am disabled and is looking to buy a cheap 200.00 or less single shot 410 shotgun , with that being said i am wanting to use it for home defense i know the 410 is not as powerful as the 12 but i cant deal with the recoil and i know they have limbsavers but i am unsure if they would make that much of a difference with me being disabled with that being said i have a few questions . would the 410 be good enough for home defense ? if so what shot shells should i use for home defense a slug or 00 ? second question would be which cheap shotgun would you recommend as of right now i have three choices the stevens 301 , the ATI NoMad and the Hatfield , third question would the 410 be enough to ward off a wild animal say a bear , coyote or bob cat , if i needed to defend myself ? i will not be doing any hunting with this gun its just for home defense and self defense if wild animals tried to attack me . thank you all .
 

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Stevens is probably the most proven. At least in my mind. I have heard folks who tested Hatfields say that they needed work sometimes to get them to even function.
Are you able to handle anything other than a single shot? If so I would get either a pump , if you can manage it, or a semi auto. I say that because you may need more than one shot in your scenarios and single shots, especially for disabled folks might take a little longer. I have a couple of Mossberg .410 youth models for the grandkids which might work for you. I would consider a mixed load of slug and 00 if possible. If not I think you can get #4 shot for .410s which should work in close quarters of a home. .410 won't necessarily take a bear, however it should at the very least handle a coyote or bobcat if that concerns you. Hope this helps and I am sure there will be someone here with much more knowledge than me who can help. If you can handle it I might suggest looking into a 20 ga. also.
 

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Atwoods here locally carries the Rock island single shots for $99. Got all 3 sizes, 12, 20, and 410.

Single shot, break open, and have had no problems with them in the year I have owned them. They were pack in a heavy grease that took some cleaning at 1st. The hardware is plastic with a wood look.

My wife set them all up with butt stock ammo carriers and shell carrying slings on the included sling mounts. So, all 3 have 1 in the pipe, 6 (12 &20) or 10 (410) on the stock, and 5 on the sling.

The 12 included a brake that makes it feel like the 20 to both the wife and I.

So, overall I like them for home defense, property defense, or general hunting at close enough ranges.

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I have lots of experience with the .410, and for your specific need iit will be adequate, but I would seek out one of the Mossberg pump shotguns if you can find a used one in your price range.

The .410 slugs may be accurate in some guns, but you can determine that only by testing. I found them mostly ineffective on game larger than foxes, at ranges beyond about 30 yards. Your gun may not hit where it looks. You could spend $25 in ammo just to find out that it doesn't work for you... A .410 slug weighs about 80 grains, but loses half its energy in the first 50 yards, where it compares to a .25-20 rifle. Certainly no bear gun!

Best for larger varmints or home defense are the 3-inch five-pellet 00 buckshot loads now widely available. This puts the same number of pellets on a silhouette target at 25 yards that a cylinder bore 12-ga. riot gun firing 9-pellet 00 buck does at 40 yards. You can expect 4 out of 5 pellets striking an Army "E" silhouette at 25 yards, which is a killing pattern, if you accept the standard that total kinetic energy on target should equal or exceed that of a hit from an M1911 .45 pistol firing service ammunition, the standard that the US Army uses.

A 00 buckshot pellet fired from a .410 has about the same energy at 25 yards as a .32 ACP pistol slug. Less than 3 pellet hits do not total our magic 350 ft.lbs. of kinetic energy and cannot be considered effective for defense. The longest range at which you can expect all 3 pellets hitting when firing the shorter 2-1/2 inch buckshot rounds is about 50 feet to 20 yards from a typical single-barrel shotgun.

Ammunition for the .410 is more expensive, because it is less popular and produced in lower volume than 12-ga or 20-ga. Use the .410 only where the reduced recoil, weight and cube of gun and ammo is worth its extra cost. Such as for use by elderly, disabled or recoil-shy family member. Use 5-pellet 00 buckshot and forget the .410 slug fantasy. I would buy a hundred rounds of 5 pellet 00 for defense use, and 250 rounds of 3-inch No. 7-1/2s for small game, training, familiarization and practice. Then have all family members pattern the gun at realistic ranges from 10 to 20 or 25 yards maximum so they understand where it hits FOR THEM, and know its range limitations.
 

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I'd recommend 00 buck (I think Federal makes an 000 buck as well). 5 pellet 3" shell (make sure the shotgun is chambered for 3" rounds; my .410s are of the Circuit Court Judge variety and they are; not sure about ALL .410s).

The main issue you're going to have in a self defense situation is capacity. So I'd personally want something with more capacity. You CAN miss with a shotgun (even a cylinder bore pattern isn't all that wide at close distances--about a large saucer at closer indoor ranges maybe out to a large dinner plate sized area at 10-15 yards). And even if you don't there's a possibility of multiple threats or the shot not stopping the threat.

Cats and coyotes would probably be OK but I'd want something more for bear.
 

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I'd recommend 00 buck (I think Federal makes an 000 buck as well). 5 pellet 3" shell (make sure the shotgun is chambered for 3" rounds; my .410s are of the Circuit Court Judge variety and they are; not sure about ALL .410s).

The main issue you're going to have in a self defense situation is capacity. So I'd personally want something with more capacity. You CAN miss with a shotgun (even a cylinder bore pattern isn't all that wide at close distances--about a large saucer at closer indoor ranges maybe out to a large dinner plate sized area at 10-15 yards). And even if you don't there's a possibility of multiple threats or the shot not stopping the threat.

Cats and coyotes would probably be OK but I'd want something more for bear.
410 Judge pistols do take a completely separate round from 410 shotguns. The actual shotgun rounds IIRC are not recommended for pistol use.
 
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I just bought a double barrel .410, J.C. Higgins (Stevens 311). It set me back about $400.00, but will give me 2 shots instead of one. A double barrel might be an option if you can find one for the right price.
 

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For some interesting covid I'm board, try to Pop out the Primers on a few EMPTY 410 shells, insert a 22lr round and Give that a Try.


Any single shot 410s are Great imo. If they Work.
1551701379906-1622256929.jpg
 

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410 Judge pistols do take a completely separate round from 410 shotguns. The actual shotgun rounds IIRC are not recommended for pistol use.
FWIW, I've patterned most all of the different .410 loads (the federal pistol loads, the PDX/Defense disk load and most everything else) through the Judge/Public Defender/Circuit court Judge.

(my Dad is very proficient with his and is NOT capable of using an autoloader so it and his J-frame smith are his primary CCWs or defensive guns. He uses a Circuit Court judge around the farm and for hunting).

I've 2 3/4 inch and 3" (magnum) cylinders (the circuit court judge and Tuffy are 3" chambers; we also have a 3" chamber judge and 2 3/4 inch PDs).

I've found the Winchester (3 or 5 in the 3") does not pattern particularly well from the judge much as you noted (the charge spreads out way rapidly). Remington HD is somewhere in between. The slugs don't really seem to matter but they're just for fun or when the range doesn't want buckshot (I can't really ever see using a .410 slug when I can use a .45 colt but perhaps someone can....they DO shoot some pretty cool flame and blast out the front though).

As you said, the best loading I've found is in the Federal 4 or 5 pellet 000 buckshot load (which was designed around the Judge). It does pattern very well inside of 15 yards (had a video on it awhile back) and I think the best choice for defensive use. The Remington is OK--wider and more erratic pattern-- but given my druthers the Federal is what I use. We use these too in the longer barreled Circuit Court and they seem to give decent performance there. I haven't had an opportunity to see how the Federal compares to the 00 Remington Magnum load velocity wise, but the test results from gel on various internet sources seems to be favorable with the Federal 000 buck loadings. I'm not sure what kind of increased velocity you might be able to get from a longer barrel but at least the buckshot seems to be able to get to where it's supposed to be.

Although 5 000 buckshot pellets seems attractive on the .410 (and the ability to use the shotgun like a revolver is a great bonus for my dad) I suspect it's quite a bit less than the 12-1300 FPS you'd get from the 9 or whatever 00 pellets out of a 12 gauge so there'd be significantly less energy. The Tuffy version IS a handy platform though (with 5 shots and a reload like a revolver) so I think will do what it needs to do if dad needs to use it in a more challenging situation.
 

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hello all , i am disabled and is looking to buy a cheap 200.00 or less single shot 410 shotgun , with that being said i am wanting to use it for home defense i know the 410 is not as powerful as the 12 but i cant deal with the recoil and i know they have limbsavers but i am unsure if they would make that much of a difference with me being disabled with that being said i have a few questions . would the 410 be good enough for home defense ? if so what shot shells should i use for home defense a slug or 00 ? second question would be which cheap shotgun would you recommend as of right now i have three choices the stevens 301 , the ATI NoMad and the Hatfield , third question would the 410 be enough to ward off a wild animal say a bear , coyote or bob cat , if i needed to defend myself ? i will not be doing any hunting with this gun its just for home defense and self defense if wild animals tried to attack me . thank you all .

I love 410s, and have singles, a double, a pump, a lever action Marlin-like a Guide Gun and a couple pistols. First, depends on your disability. I am disabled and have back and arms issues, but have no problem with say a pump. I have also been in law enforcement and a CCW instructor and 2 branches of the military. My point is the first question is what action can you handle, anything more than a single shot is preferred. Recoil is not really an issue.

Second, there have been lots of studies the last couple decades since the Taurus Judge came on scene. In the 2.5 inch shell in the pistol, the absolute best self defense load is the Federal Brand, 4 pellet OO buck load. From the 2.5 inch barrel of my SW Governor, at 50 feet I can easily put all six shots, 24 pellets inside a 14 inch circle. As others have said, those little pellets are about like a 32 acp, except you get 4 at a time. The 5 pellet load is even better.

Slugs just do not have the thump you get with the OO buck loads. Think of this, you can get 5 of them out of a regular 410, a standard 12 gauge buckshot load contains 9. I have killed a deer with them in 12 gauge and they work.

A long gun is not always the best for home defense, because they are long and hard to move as quickly as a handgun. Also, just for grins you can buy chamber adapters that let you fire pistol rounds in them, 9mm, 380 and 38 special. Do not shoot 45 in your gun, many 45s will shoot 410, but not the other way around.https://www.gunadapters.com/410-to-9mm-scavenger-series/

I would not consider stopping a bear with a 410 unless I was fast on my feet, shoot and run, so to speak. For the same money you can get a 20 gauge if a bear is at all possible, then with slugs they are more than adequate. My 2 cents.
 

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Correction, I said the 00 buck loads, I mean the 000 buck, my mistake. I just cast a bunch of each of them, the 00 buck is .330 caliber and the 000 buck is .36 caliber, the same as a 38 or 357.
 
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I guess to sum all of this up the answer to the op is both yes and no. a .410 would work for home and smaller game but not necessarily for a bear. speaking for everybody here (I hope) we hope this helps you make a decision.
 

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I know this doesn't fit the OP price point of $200, but you might be able to find something similar to a Mossberg Bantam 500/505/510. These are youth models, and I keep a 20 ga version of it next to my bed at night with five rounds of Federal 000. (I just found new .410 versions on-line for about $299 at Bud's gun shop)

I like the Bantam because it has a short 22" barrel, and overall length is about 40". It has a 5+1 capacity, so you would have follow up shots if needed. The Bantam is lighter, and easier for handling in close quarters than a full sized adult version. I've given my adult daughter a 20 ga to keep in her apartment for her protection, so I'm a believer in it.

There is also the Super Mini Bantam that has an overall length of about 34" with a 2+1 capacity. I found these in the $330 price range.

In a home defense situation, with your adrenaline rush, you can lose your fine motor skills, your disability could have some impact, and things don't always work out as we have planned them. In my opinion, you need to have a follow up shot or two for home defense, and would stay away from a single shot.

Just another opinion, but one I'm backing up with what I've put into practice for myself.
 

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I know this doesn't fit the OP price point of $200, but you might be able to find something similar to a Mossberg Bantam 500/505/510. These are youth models, and I keep a 20 ga version of it next to my bed at night with five rounds of Federal 000. (I just found new .410 versions on-line for about $299 at Bud's gun shop)

I like the Bantam because it has a short 22" barrel, and overall length is about 40". It has a 5+1 capacity, so you would have follow up shots if needed. The Bantam is lighter, and easier for handling in close quarters than a full sized adult version. I've given my adult daughter a 20 ga to keep in her apartment for her protection, so I'm a believer in it.

There is also the Super Mini Bantam that has an overall length of about 34" with a 2+1 capacity. I found these in the $330 price range.

In a home defense situation, with your adrenaline rush, you can lose your fine motor skills, your disability could have some impact, and things don't always work out as we have planned them. In my opinion, you need to have a follow up shot or two for home defense, and would stay away from a single shot.

Just another opinion, but one I'm backing up with what I've put into practice for myself.
I can also speak highly of the bantam. I have my sons old 20 ga. I use it for deer hunting because it’s so easy to move around in a ground blind.


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... third question would the 410 be enough to ward off a wild animal say a bear , coyote or bob cat ....
Coyotes or bob cats won't bother you unless you're down; in which case the .410 would be plenty. No on the bear. You want a 12 ga. for a bear, even a black bear. Autoloaders don't buck as much. Maybe that would work?
 
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The problem we have here is two almost mutually exclusive factors: price and capability.

I'm with the crew who favor the .410 Mossberg pump guns, especially if you can find one of the Bantams with the 18 inch barrel. It would be like having a scaled down Mossberg 500 Police Cruiser. Handy, 5+1 capacity if I remember correctly, and if you put a set of ghost ring sights on it it would do for every mission 22Mag is asking it to perform except for bear. Even 12 gauge slugs won't do much more than make Mr. Bear angry, and a .410 would just sting him some and annoy him. (Of course, my opinion is the smallest gun suitable for Mr. Bear is a 25mm Bushmaster with explosive shells, and a Rheinmetall M256 120mm cannon is better.) But for everything else, a Bantam would get it done.

Thing is, the Mossy 500 Bantam is in the $300 price range. If you could find one, a Mossberg 183 bolt action might do. It is only a 2+1 capacity, and all it has for sights is a front bead, but they are showing up on the auction sites in the $125 range. That might meet 22Mag's two requirements.
 

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Understanding it may be out of scope for the op in price or possibly desire,
Here is the middle road for shot gun and judge / governor. Just to add color to the conversation


https://www.mossberg.com/product/590-shockwave-410-bore/

These PDX rounds look like they’d leave a mark.

https://www.midwayusa.com/product/2900393924/

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Yeah....the only thing that gave me some pause is that the disks are hardened but kinda light. The one thing this does is have some BBs in it; one of the main problems of the Judge/PD is you kinda never want to use birdshot in it unless you know you're going after chipmunks or snakes and waste that shot; the Buckshot is superior. But you could put a PDX or two in it and might have a decent snake/critter load while also having some defensive capability. I have noticed the PDXs do generate some blast which is a little bit different; perhaps from the filler in them.
 
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