A new home-defense and self-defense shotgun load is hitting shelves now from HEVI-Shot, called HEVI-Duty. The 12-gauge shotgun shells are packed full of frangible pellets that fragment and powderize if they hit stone, concrete or steel but remain intact on soft targets.
The design of this shot allows it to be used in tight quarters where ricochet is a real concern, and it slightly lessens the risks of over-penetration in some circumstances. It’s got the benefits of a breaching slug and the payload of buckshot.
“When we developed HEVI-Duty, we did so with a frangible pellet,” explained HEVI-Shot’s Kelly Sorensen. We knew this load is going to be used at close distances where full-penetration is paramount, but the shot needs to return to its original powder state when it strikes hard surfaces such as concrete, steel, and rock.
“All of our products are known for their high-performance qualities, and we built these same standards into HEVI-Duty. Lives could, and probably will depend on this product delivering on its promise so we took our time developing this new round.
“We have extensively tested it under defense style testing situations utilizing ballistic gelatin and common items of clothing to ensure it would perform to our requirements,” said Sorensen.
HEVI-Duty is currently available in two 12-gauge loads, both using 2.75-inch shells, a #4 load with 30 pellets and a #00 load with 12. Both are rated to make 1,250 feet-per-second, making them reduced-recoil rounds — reduced-recoil rounds becoming somewhat standard with most self-defense shotgun loads for ease of use and reduced time getting back on target — it’s not as if reduced-recoil loads are less effective.
A side-benefit to being frangible is that the pellets are composed of lead-free materials — most likely sintered steel alloy — and is safe and non-toxic, which is a good thing when what you’re shooting turns to dust when it strikes something hard enough.
HEVI-Shot is a fairly well-known manufacturer of niche and specialty shotgun shells and while many loads can serve in multiple roles this is their first explicit self-defense load. The recommended price is $9 per box of 5 shells, which is on-par with many specialty loads like this.
It will be interesting to see some ballistics about this new product. The manufacturer has stated that it will not break apart in soft targets including bone and tissue; this probably means it shouldn’t be considered to miss with. Anything that penetrates adequately into targets or target media will easily pass through building materials like gypsum board.
This new ammo is on it’s way to store shelves now and you might find it in-stock locally. If you want to stay up-to-date with all news HEVI-Shot-related check out their Facebook page for daily updates. For more information, head over to the HEVI-Shot website.