Red dot on a HD shotgun?

Tactical, combat, military, law enforcement and home defense use of a Remington 870 shotgun.
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Carlo1137
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Red dot on a HD shotgun?

Post by Carlo1137 » Tue Dec 11, 2012 2:04 am

What do people think about having a red dot sight on a home defense shotgun? Can I get some input on what are the pros and cons? Should you even put this on a home defense shotgun?

Thanks in advance.
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Chief Brody
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Re: Red dot on a HD shotgun?

Post by Chief Brody » Tue Dec 11, 2012 2:20 am

Here's my reservation about a red dot on an HD gun, when every fraction of a second counts in life-threatening home invasion scenario, are you going to want to have to turn on the red dot sight? I think whatever sights you've got on the gun, plus a good weapon light like a TLR-1 would be better.
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RichNZ
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Re: Red dot on a HD shotgun?

Post by RichNZ » Tue Dec 11, 2012 6:16 am

I like red dots, I really do. What I don't like is the idea of grabbing my gun, and the red dot batteries have gone flat. Tritium however... 12+ years of glow time :) That and my torch is always charged as I use it most days

badboybeeson
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Re: Red dot on a HD shotgun?

Post by badboybeeson » Tue Dec 11, 2012 4:34 pm

hell no! not unless you can still see your iron sights when the RD sight installed.
bbb

cms1528
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Re: Red dot on a HD shotgun?

Post by cms1528 » Wed Jan 30, 2013 6:06 pm

NO NO NO, take it from someone who has been in gun fights. Learn to shoot that thing instinctively, point and shoot. When the heat hits the fan its time to metal up and defend your home. A shooting senerio will only last seconds and be over before you know what happened. Your instinctive training will kick in and you will go into auto pilot, you do not need to be fussing with red dot sites, slings, tactical lights or any other junk you can bolt to that SG.
...no way kid, you'll shoot your eye out

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Synchronizor
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Re: Red dot on a HD shotgun?

Post by Synchronizor » Wed Jan 30, 2013 9:42 pm

For me, a HD build is completely different from a tactical/go-to-war build.

My bedside HD setup is:
  • Old-school Police riot furniture
    18.5" bead sight barrel
    +2 extension
    Mag tube clamp
That's it. I live alone in a one-room apartment, so I don't waste time with a light. Pistol grips don't fit me well, and I'm so accustomed to manipulating the gun with the riot stock, I don't even have to think about it. A sling would only be good for getting tangled up in the confusion. Fancy sights or optics would also just be wasted time in that environment (I do want to put in a tritium bead, though).

It sits next to my bed with a full magazine, an empty chamber, the safety off, and the trigger pulled. I only keep it loaded with one type of buckshot (usually 00B); I don't do Dutch loading, because I know I'll never keep track of what's next in the heat of a shooting.

If I was heading into a battlefield, I would have a completely different configuration with a lot of tactical bells and whistles. If my door crashes in in the middle of the night, I want to be able to roll over, grab the gun and rack it by muscle memory, and be in business.

K.I.S.S.

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rythomas0704
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Re: Red dot on a HD shotgun?

Post by rythomas0704 » Thu Jan 31, 2013 4:45 am

I am a huge believer that optics do NOT have a place on a shotgun. That is why majority of shotguns do not have rails.

You need to learn to safely and confidently be able to hit your target using the provided sight on the gun or maybe an upgraded set. Too much too worry about with optics. Batteries, acquisition of target, and maintaining zero after repeated firing.

I too keep a bedside 12 in my home. Fully loaded, empty chamber, and the safety off. All that is done is a hogue pistol grip and fore end, and a light. Its what I depend on in case someone comes through my bedroom door. When I need to actually explore the house or property I have my 870 handy.

Like Synchronizor said though, it all depends. HD and Combat are totally different.
"People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf."
- George Orwell

n4rod
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Re: Red dot on a HD shotgun?

Post by n4rod » Sat Feb 02, 2013 2:20 pm

I just finished building a custom defense shotgun and installed a red dot rear sight. But I also installed a front fiber optic sight and a EOTech forend with a 120 lumen LED light.

I carried a 870 12 gauge as a combat photographer in Vietnam 1969-1970. Had a 18 inch barrel with a bead and nothing else for a sight. I learned to shoot both on the run and instinctively. Don't think there was any red dot sights that I saw back then, and don't know if they would have stood up to the conditions forced upon our firearms during that period.

But today I'm 63 years old with type 2 diabetes and it messes with my eyes.

If I'm in my home and it's night, I'll use the EOTech forend and shoot instinctively.

If I'm outdoors and have the need to be carrying the shotgun, the red dot will be turned on in advance and it's co-witnessed with the fiber optic sight. Already tried it both daytime and at night with the forend light on, and my old, aging eyes could easily pick up both sights aligned when I was focusing on the target.

I can understand that being startled out of sleep and your bed in the middle of the night would not be the best time to be fiddling with a red dot sight switch. The pressure pads on both sides of the EOTech forend makes turning the light on instinctive.

If I were 18 years old again, I'd just have a bead on the end of the barrel and nothing else to worry about.

Rod

P.S. I live in a very remote location on a private road in a National Forest. I own the road coming to my property, a locked gate that requires permission to enter, and acreage. Everyone knows to call prior to coming out here. The 3 nearest homes, 3/4 of a mile away are all occupied law enforcement officers. Their homes are in the next valley over and we're separated by a mountain peak. There's no possibility of any projectile fired from our locations reaching the other residences. And I'm not worried about over penetration from within my home. There's lots of stuff mounted on my custom 870, but I installed each and every item for a specific use, some of them because of my aging eyesight.
Last edited by n4rod on Sat Feb 02, 2013 6:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Synchronizor
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Re: Red dot on a HD shotgun?

Post by Synchronizor » Sat Feb 02, 2013 4:27 pm

n4rod wrote:I just finished building a custom defense shotgun and installed a red dot rear sight. But I also installed a front fiber optic sight and a EOTech forend with a 120 lumen LED light.

I carried a 870 12 gauge as a combat photographer in Vietnam 1969-1970. Had a 18 inch barrel with a bead and nothing else for a sight. I learned to shoot both on the run and instinctively. Don't think there was any red dot sights that I saw back then, and don't know if they would have stood up to the conditions forced upon our firearms during that period.

But today I'm 63 years old with type 2 diabetes and it messes with my eyes.

If I'm in my home and it's night, I'll use the EOTech forend and shoot instinctively.

If I'm outdoors and have the need to be carrying the shotgun, the red dot will be turned on in advance and it's co-witnessed with the fiber optic sight. Already tried it both daytime and at night with the forend light on, and my old, aging eyes could easily pick up both sights aligned when I was focusing on the target.

I can understand that being startled out of sleep and your bed in the middle of the night would not be the best time to be fiddling with a red dot sight switch. The pressure pads on both sides of the EOTech forend makes turning the light on instinctive.

If I were 18 years old again, I'd just have a bead on the end of the barrel and nothing else to worry about.

Rod
That's an interesting perspective, thanks for sharing.

I don't think there's a single answer for every situation. I live alone in a 1-room apartment, so if I get invaded in the middle of the night, I need to react fast, at close range. A light would just take time and kill my night vision, and no-one but me has any reason to enter my home uninvited at night. Consequently, I run a dead-simple build for HD.

In the future though, when I have a family, a house, and/or extended property outside, I'm sure my HD build will be different, since long-range shooting and target identification may be higher priorities than just getting a shot off as fast as possible. That said, I do think a lot of people assume a full-on combat build is also the best choice for HD, and end up hanging a lot of unnecessary gear on their shotguns when a simpler setup would serve them better.

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rythomas0704
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Re: Red dot on a HD shotgun?

Post by rythomas0704 » Sat Feb 02, 2013 9:55 pm

Synch,
I agree with you fully. My HD shotgun is very simple and always close at hand. I do have a light and a side saddle but that is it. I also have a two bedroom one story home that I have to navigate so the light serves me well. It is also an older Sears Roebuck Ted Williams model that has seen PLENTY of use since it was built in 62. The gun has no action lock, and racks unbelievably easy and smooth. It loads shells into the mag with little to no effort or resistance. It has NEVER failed to fire, eject or chamber. It is not pretty by any means either LOL but she does her job well.
"People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf."
- George Orwell

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