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Old 06-29-2006, 05:46 PM   #1
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Rifle for home defense?

Been thinking about a rifle for home defense. Since I live (for now) in Kalifornia, I am not able to possess any kind of an assault rifle. Would a lever gun in 357 work? Which one would you chose? Thanks….
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Old 06-29-2006, 06:17 PM   #2
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Shotgun.
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Old 06-29-2006, 06:22 PM   #3
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One that holds 5 to 8 rounds. Use 7½ shot inside the home to reduce chances of wall penetration with no. 4 buck in a carrier on the the stock.
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Old 06-29-2006, 09:33 PM   #4
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You can still get the Kel-tec SU-16 .223 carbine, uses AR mags. I don't have one, but the guys on the Kel-tec forum just rave about them. Been thinking of getting one, but might opt instead for an M1A; not for home defense, just for pure shooting pleasure!
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Old 06-29-2006, 10:35 PM   #5
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Ditto on the shotgun. I keep 2.75" target loads for in the home, since at the distances involved, they all arrive in a lump anyway, and the birdshot won't go through 6 walls before stopping. The shorter shells allow an extra in some guns. If you're in a rural setting where the Police are an hour away, have a rifle to keep the nasties at a distance, preferrably a .30 to deny them cover behind a vehicle, which a 5.56 won't do. Keep add't'l ammo in magazines and PRACTICE combat reloads. In the dark. Also, keep your neighbor's phone numbers on speed dial, especially if they shoot. Consider two-way radio, in case the badguys thought of the landline. I would assume that in a rural setting, some planning on the badguys part was done and you were targeted, so some attention to not looking like an easy nut to crack may be in order also. READ UP on home defense. Just trying to cover the bases.
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Old 06-29-2006, 11:41 PM   #6
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Another vote for the shotgun.

Mine is a Mossburg, bolt action, 18.5 long barrel, 20 gauge with five #7 1/2 shells on the stock in a electronic cobination lock safe.

Reason for the paticular shotgun is it is not real valuable so that when the police take it because I shot someone, I won't cry so much when I can't get it back (look at Katrina and N.O).

Remember that if you are in California, you have to have a state approved trigger lock or a state approved gun safe to lock up your guns or you can be held liable if someone steals your guns or a child gets your gun and harm is done to a child or someone else--reason for electronic lock is speed--get the gun out and going.
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Old 06-30-2006, 12:48 AM   #7
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Guy I knew years ago had a pretty good idea. When he was having a house built, he not only had a special room inside with no exterior walls, but had it reinforced as a full size secure "safe", with a steel door behind a typical hollow core interior door. On the wall it had in common with the Master Bedroom, he bolted a surplused police shotgun rack from a police car, the electrically released kind. To release it only requires 12V DC, so he put together a programmable keypad sold for do-it-yourself home alarms, and hooked it up to a small 12V battery, along with a small trickle charger. The rack prevents racking the shotgun (kept chamber-empty), and the battery-based system is independant of house power. It wouldn't be difficult to bolt a similar rack to a standard wall at a stud, maybe inside a closet, and just use a hidden button for a release.
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Old 06-30-2006, 03:06 AM   #8
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Old 06-30-2006, 03:59 AM   #9
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Typical internet discussion--man asks what's the best vanilla ice cream and 80% of the responders tell him what he wants is chocolate.

Those pushing shotgun have a point and might even be right. The OP's choice of a .357 lever gun might not be my very first choice, even in Kali, but I would think that it would serve him just fine in the intended role. Especially if it's something he wants anyway, and will take it out and SHOOT IT often and make sure it works flawlessly and get reallly good with it.

Drive on, friend!
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Old 06-30-2006, 05:15 AM   #10
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I gotta go with Snake on this one. While it wouldn't be my first choice either(Inside a home), we don't know enough about his circumstances to question his option. with light, quickly-expanding or frangible bullets, it should suffice.
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Old 06-30-2006, 05:54 AM   #11
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Thanks to you folks; but I wanted rifle opinions. I have several handguns and a HD shotgun. Can I get RIFLE opinions please???
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Old 06-30-2006, 06:06 AM   #12
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In that case, yes, a lever gun would work. So would a SKS, but then again, you're in California which kills that idea. Since you already have handguns, are any .357 or .45 Colt revolvers? If yes, then a lever gun in the same caliber would be a good choice.

But Snake, it is chocolate.
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Old 06-30-2006, 06:20 AM   #13
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Just be aware that rimmed-pistol type lever guns may choke on the ammo. Not often, but it can, and does, happen. Make sure that you try your load out before you settle on one.

If penetration is a concern, .357 Glaser or Magsafe are expensive, but work just fine. Testing this idea, I fired a 9mm Glaser Blue into a wall of modern construction. It penetrated one wall at 9mm diameter, blew a hole in the next wall of about 4" diameter, but didn't penetrate a sheet of brown paper made from a grocery store bag placed 6" behind the wall.

You can also load .38 Special, or .44 Special in the case of a .44 Mag lever gun.
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Old 06-30-2006, 07:58 AM   #14
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How bout a Camp Gun in 45 or 9mm?
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Old 06-30-2006, 08:43 AM   #15
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The camp gun is an excellent idea.
If you want a lever gun, I'd recommend the Marlin 1894C. The "C" is the shortest barreled version and is more manuverable inside the house. If you choose the 38/357 version, use only 357. They feed MUCH more reliably, unless you do parts modification, which is not a good idea in a court of law.
The .223 is also a good choice, but I am not that familiar with rifles in this caliber. The Ruger is supposed to be an excellent choice, buit I do not have first hand knowledge.
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Old 06-30-2006, 09:37 AM   #16
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I don't have any first-hand experiences with the Winnie 94 in pistol calibers, but I've been told by CAS guys that they're prone to malf, a bit fragile, and an overly intricate design. If you're looking for something like that, I'd ask the folks that REALLY use them what their experiences are.

My thought process is that if you're using one for home defense, you're going to want to practice with it, and it should stand up to hard, trouble free use. FWIW.
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Old 06-30-2006, 10:22 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bravo762
I don't have any first-hand experiences with the Winnie 94 in pistol calibers, but I've been told by CAS guys that they're prone to malf, a bit fragile, and an overly intricate design.
I'm not sure I would agree the Win. 94 is an overly intricate design, or that it's fragile. I have heard of problems with them reliably chambering some kinds of ammo. They were designed to use the long cartridges like the .30-30, and others of similar lengths. Modifying them to chamber the short "pistol" type cartridges may have introduced compromises that require careful ammo selection to overcome. I always sort of wondered why they bothered to modify the 94. The 1892 was actually designed for pistol length cartridges, has a VERY NICE action that accomadates modern powder quite well.
And I see the 92 has since been reintroduced....
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Old 06-30-2006, 11:14 AM   #18
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Tommy,
You are essentially correct.
Winchester made several series of lever action rifles, with the 92 being hte most relable "for CAS shooters".
Two problems they do have are if you don't cycle the lever fully (going too fast), they will not feed reliably and sometimes the spent case will fall back into the action. Neither is a major problem and both are caused by trying to go too fast.
The Marlin does not have the problem of cases falling back. Both require the gun to be cycled fully (duh).
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Old 06-30-2006, 11:37 AM   #19
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Tommy, no sweat. As I said, I’m not speaking about the pistol calibers from first-hand knowledge. What I can speak about is the ’94 in 30-30. When I was informed of the shortcomings of the ’94 in 45 Colt, it REALLY surprised me, as the 30-30 has always been great. Well, it seems that the cowboy shooters are pounding the actions pretty hard in the rapid fire events. After all, if you’re not Chuck Connors, what good are you? HA! Something you’d never see in normal / hunting activity. OK, I’ll buy. But the hotrods say to avoid the ’94 like the plague, and they’re all of the same mind. That says something to me.

Like you said, they weren’t designed for the pistol ammo. That’s probably why they do so much better in the 30-30 and such.

The recommended ordnance? Uberti 1873 clones.
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Old 06-30-2006, 06:37 PM   #20
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When I saw "rifle" mentioned in the same breath as California, I opined the .223 Kel-tec SU-16. It's the closest thing now in the Land of Oz to an affordable "assault" gun, unless you consider the Fab-10 clones. But who wants to bring a 10-round gun to an 11-round firefight? Not me. The Mini-14 has a rep for reliability, though it continues to pose questionable accuracy concerns. Given the scenario stated, I think it'd work just fine.

I'm surprised no one has mentioned the lowly M1 .30 cal carbine. With the right bullets, it should certainly be a candidate for the job mentioned.
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