duplex scope crosshairs logo in orange color
duplex scope crosshairs logo in orange color

All About Short-Barreled Shotguns

Short-barreled shotguns, also known as SBSs, are one of the types of guns that are regulated by the National Firearms Act (NFA). At The Hub, we specialize in NFA-controlled and hard-to-find items, including SBSs. We can help you find the perfect gun for you.

What Are Short-Barreled Shotguns?

The NFA defines a short-barreled shotgun as any shotgun with a barrel less than 18 inches long. This includes both shotguns that are made to have a short barrel or those that have been modified to reduce the barrel length.

This definition can sometimes be confusing and there are many guns that seem very similar to short-barreled shotguns but are not technically considered SBSs and therefore aren’t subject to the NFA requirements.

The intended firing position matters a great deal in this definition since shotguns are intended to be fired from the shoulder and have a shoulder stock. However, even if the weapon does not currently have a stock, it would be an SBS if it had a stock at any point and fit the other parts of the definition. Many guns without stocks but which fire shotshells and have a barrel less than 18 inches fall under the “any other weapon” (AOW) category of the NFA, and are still regulated.

If you have doubts about the classification of a weapon that you are purchasing or making, it’s important to get clarification from a professional. The information in this blog is for general purposes only and does not constitute legal advice.

Buying or Manufacturing NFA Items

In order to purchase or manufacture an NFA-regulated firearm, you will need to fill out the appropriate forms and pay a $200 tax stamp. You will need to wait until these forms are processed to get your firearm.

If you modify an existing shotgun to create an SBS without paying the tax stamp, you can face serious legal consequences.

Pros and Cons of Short-Barreled Shotguns

If you’re trying to determine if an SBS is a good option for you, it’s helpful to consider the pros and cons of this type of weapon.


One of the main reasons people are interested in short-barreled shotguns is their maneuverability. Compared to full-length shotguns, SBSs are more suitable for close-quarters tactical situations.

Compared to shorter guns that only have a pistol grip, a short-barreled shotgun is often easier to control due to its stock.


Due to the shorter barrel, SBSs lose a bit of velocity compared to longer shotguns. They are also less accurate in many cases.

The biggest downside to short-barreled shotguns for most people is the long wait and additional cost for an NFA-regulated firearm.

Purchase Firearms at The Hub

The Hub is your one-stop gun stop and we have a wide variety of weapons, including NFA-regulated items such as SBSs, short-barreled rifles (SBRs), and suppressors.

Visit us today in Tucson, Lakeside, or Phoenix to browse our selection of firearms.
a short barreled shotgun on a wood table

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