Can You Add A Bayonet On A Home Defense Shotgun

Can You Install A Bayonet On a Shotgun?

Are Bayonets Practical For Home Defense?

The bayonet has a long history of being used for defense. The original bayonet was simply a knife affixed to the end of a musket, and it was used by the French to hunt bear. The original bayonet was known as a plug bayonet, as it literally attached to the musket by plugging the barrel. The clear downside of a plug bayonet was the inability to fire the musket while the bayonet was installed.1Obviously the bayonet has significantly evolved throughout the years and has come a long way since the plug bayonet. The idea of the bayonet, however, is providing a firearm bearer a last resort in the event a confrontation or skirmish becomes close combat. Shotguns in particular are designed for close quarters combat and make excellent home defense firearms. 

Honestly, home invasions most certainly qualify as close quarters combat, and therefore, it makes sense that shotguns and bayonets would be considered together.

Is It Possible To Add A Bayonet To A Shotgun?

Two of the most popular shotguns today are the Remington 870 and the Mossberg 870. As a byproduct of their consumer popularity, many owners wonder about attaching a bayonet to one of these two shotguns. Fortunately, there are many bayonet options available for both of these shotguns. In fact, it is possible to add a bayonet to many shotguns, provided the bayonet comes with an appropriate adapter or mounting kit. The mounting kits are generally very clear about which shotguns they will be compatible with.

Should You Attach A Bayonet To A Shotgun?

Gun owners and enthusiasts seem torn on the topic of affixing a bayonet to a shotgun. Much of the crowd agrees that it is viable for home defense, however, there is a good number of enthusiasts who believe it is overkill. Some of the people who disagree with attaching a bayonet to a shotgun argue that it would make maneuvering in close quarters too difficult. They also claim it adds too much weight to the front of the shotgun barrel, affecting overall accuracy and shooting effectiveness.2On the other side of the fence, it is argued that a bayonet on the end of a shotgun will dissuade an enemy from reaching out for the weapon. Another benefit is the range it provides the defending shotgun-wielder. This also allows the benefit of reloading more safely.

Regardless of opinion, the market offers plenty of shotgun bayonet kits and options. And many of these shotgun bayonet kits work very well (in terms of attaching the bayonet itself to the firearm successfully)! In the end, it mostly comes down to the comfort of the shooter and gun owner as to whether a bayonet makes a good addition to their shotgun.

Adding a Bayonet to a Shotgun

Adding a bayonet to a shotgun is relatively easy. Shotgun bayonets are just like any other bayonets in that they require special hardware mounts. The hardware typically includes a couple of pieces that work together to form a sturdy, reliable, attached blade. Usually there is an adjustable end cap, and either what is known as a “tube mount” (sometimes with rails) or a lug band. After attaching the tube mount or lug band to the shotgun barrel, the bayonet is affixed so solidly that it feels like it is part of the shotgun.

Beyond installing a bayonet, it is worth the time and effort to imagine how it will be used in a variety of home defense situations. This will help prepare the shooter to choose better positioning when an intruder is approaching. A better position will mean making better use of the shotgun, and the bayonet in the event the shotgun does not do the trick!

home defense mossberg 500

Bayonets and Shotguns Are Great For Home Defense

To summarize: YES! A bayonet can be attached to a shotgun and works great for home defense with proper, advanced planning. Both, the bayonet and the shotgun make for exceptional home defense weapons when the shooter learns how to maneuver with the longer firearm. And many shotguns already have mounting kits available.

Shotguns are powerful firearms and are very scary to encounter in a close quarters combat situation. Seeing a shotgun that also sports a sharp bayonet would undoubtedly be more terrifying. Beyond the scare-factor, however, the shotgun has excellent stopping power and in the event the shooter misses, a bayonet becomes an excellent backup defense when being rushed by an intruder. Remember to take the best positions available for both: shooting straight and keeping the gun’s bayonet in line with a potential rushing attacker.

Interested in improving your home defense? Check out the Best Infrared Optic Scopes for Close Quarters!


1NPS. A Brief History of the Bayonet. Retrieved from:

2Personal Defense Network. The Defensive Shotgun: Part I – Accessories. Retrieved from:

About the Author:

Mark Doberman, The Proprietary Gun Smith

The Proprietary Gun Smith is a marksman, expert gun handler, ammunition specialist, survival guru, and lifetime gun enthusiast. He owns (or has owned) nearly every legal firearm and ballistic available, has fired nearly every gun, and regularly consults professionally in the firearm world. He has studied firearms and similar tactical lifestyle for more than 40 years. In addition to writing for, TheProprietaryGunSmith has guest written for more than a dozen other sites and/or magazines in the industry.

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