Loading for shotshells

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Loading for shotshells

Post by Daywalker on Thu Nov 18, 2010 12:37 pm

I know wielderladentv loads for shotshells, who else on this forum loads for shotshells as well? I am looking to purchasing a Lee Load All soon. What type hulls are best to load, high brass, low brass, brand of 209 primers, certain brand of shots, slugs ect..ect... Wan't to learn more about shotshells.. Any specific wadding better than the other? Wafers or wad cups? I could cast my own slugs with the Lee mold.

Also, for those with the lee load all, charging bars, do you have to buy certain charge bars for different shot loads and powder loads? How do you adjust the powder drop and the shot drop with a charging bar? The crimp die, any certain number of crimp better than the other? Like, I have heard of a 6 point crimp and I believe a 4 point crimp?

What is a good load book? I take it the information is the same as center fire? certain hulls with certain powder type and volumn? Certain shot with certain powder volumn??

Thanks guys, information over load here LOL

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Re: Loading for shotshells

Post by hawcer on Thu Nov 18, 2010 1:31 pm

You and me both....I'm just not sure if I can manage to reload for something else...but I've been saving all my hulls just in case.

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Re: Loading for shotshells

Post by XbonesX on Thu Nov 18, 2010 1:45 pm

reloading for shotshell is very component specific. if the load calls for a Win AA hull, whatever wad, this powder, and that primer, you need to stick to it. You shouldn't change components like you do in metallic reloading.

People leave more hulls then brass at the ranges, so just go pickup everything you can.

the Lee Load all comes with about 20 different charging bushings so shouldn't need to buy anything else. Crimps are specific to the hull you're using. I use the free load data from Hodgdon's website.

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Re: Loading for shotshells

Post by Pathfinder on Thu Nov 18, 2010 1:57 pm

I also use the free load data on Hodgdon. Its nice because every time you enter a new component for the shell you are loading the sight automatically narrows it down for you until you are left with the correct info for your load. The first question it will ask you is what hull you are using. The next question will be what projectile you will use. From there it will give you choices as far as wand and powder type. I love loading shot shells.Your right it is kinda info over load at first till you get used to it. Soon it will be second nature for you. Here is the link. http://www.hodgdon.com/
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Re: Loading for shotshells

Post by wiederladertv on Fri Nov 19, 2010 4:06 am

I used some load data from the Lyman shotshell reloading book and some from powder manufactures like Hodgdon and Alliant.
If you change component start with low loads and if it works go up with the powder charge. But please be carefully in doing that.
The pressure can grow up by only changing a wad, a primer or the shotshell.
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Re: Loading for shotshells

Post by Daywalker on Fri Nov 19, 2010 8:47 am

Wow, shotshell seems to be more sensitive than metalic reloading. One has to be on his toes even more when doing shotshells...

Thanks for the info guys...

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Re: Loading for shotshells

Post by Reload3006 on Fri Nov 19, 2010 3:25 pm

ive been loading shotgun shells since the mid to late sixties. ive never used the lee load all. it looks to be ok. i have always used the Mec Jr 600 type of loaders. you have asked several questions First i would suggest you go and get a Shotgun shell load book Lyman makes a great one. as to what hull loads the best your opionion is as good as mine remington rxps and winchester aa hulls load great but that would depend on what you are wanting your shot gun to do.. I load .410, 20ga,12ga,10ga. mostly 12 gage and 10 gage for turkey. you will find that case capacity will dictate what wad you use for your shot charge weight and like rifle loading the powder will depend on what shot weight gage case etc. I really have noticed no difference in primers. i know someone will jump on me about that but it has been my experience they are all about the same. CHECK YOUR LOAD BOOKS AND START THERE dont play with it and blow your gun up
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Re: Loading for shotshells

Post by Reload3006 on Fri Nov 19, 2010 3:56 pm

also you asked about shot and powder drop. I believe could be wrong as i dont have a lee load all. The shot and powder are metered by bushings.
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Re: Loading for shotshells

Post by Daywalker on Fri Nov 19, 2010 4:09 pm

Oh I am getting a load book for shot shell's. There is no worries about that. Would be kinda poor judgement not too being that I reload metalic and a person would not do that without a load book either. I am just new to shot gun reloading.

The Lee Load All comes with many different bushings from what I have been reading. Hopefully I will be ordering one by the end of next week maybe...

Thanks for the information and tips on the primers...

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Re: Loading for shotshells

Post by Reload3006 on Fri Nov 19, 2010 4:58 pm

oh yea one other thing. on a shotgun shell the brass means absolutely nothing. a Winchester super x hull will load the same as a Winchester AA the difference is the AA has an 8 point crimp and the Super X has a six the inside of the hull is the same. i have loaded magnum pheasant loads in AA hulls the pressure is contained by your shot gun chamber. there are even brass less hulls out there. Just so you know as a matter of fact you will find that reloading low brass is easier than high because not as much pressure is required and they come out of your sizing ring easier.
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Re: Loading for shotshells

Post by Daywalker on Fri Nov 19, 2010 5:02 pm

Thanks for the info. Lots of good info here. Really learning something here about shot shell loading... So I should look at getting different crimping dies for different hulls. I prob should just find one hull type and stick to that one...

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Re: Loading for shotshells

Post by Reload3006 on Fri Nov 19, 2010 5:11 pm

i would imagine that the lee load all will come with both crimp starters. you would just change them out depending on what hull you are loading.... what i usually do is try to keep the good trap range hulls they usually load the best. then if im going squirrel hunting or such where i know i will probably lose my empty i load my junk hulls.
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Re: Loading for shotshells

Post by wiederladertv on Fri Nov 19, 2010 5:26 pm

Shotshell reloading is easy and make a lot of fun. I tried to sync my youtube video in english language next monday, so everybody should understand (I hope)
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Re: Loading for shotshells

Post by Waldoone on Mon Dec 20, 2010 7:58 pm

OK guys, I have a few questions on this topic.
#1 Do you need to clean your hulls before reloading
#2 If so, how
#3 Can you use the Lee cast slugs in a smooth bore
#4 If one is on a budget. What reloading manual do you suggest,
powder choice to be used for shot, buck, and slugs. Would like find
one for all three uses if possible.
#5 For a home defense round, is #6 buck shot a reasonable choice
All input on this is greatly appreciated. Jim
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Re: Loading for shotshells

Post by Reload3006 on Mon Dec 20, 2010 8:12 pm

OK I've been loading for several years. I have 5 mec 600 jrs Yes you can shoot a slug in a smooth bore. if it has changeable chokes you may want to get one for slugs. slug barrels have riflings in them and are intended to allow the slug gun users more of a rifle like gun. For home defense IMO #6 bird shot or #4 is as effective as anything that you can use it will definitely kill any intruder but it probably wont shoot through your walls and kill your kids in the next room. Cleaning your hulls is a simple matter of just making sure they don't have any dirt on them that could do lots of stuff mostly damage your shotgun chamber. as far as your re-loader there is really nothing that it could damage. Powder is a lot like rifle and pistol it depends on what you want to do. Red dot makes an excellent trap and light load powder in 12 ga 1 1/8 oz shot Winchester AA wad look on line for the mec powder bushing. I think its a 32 but don't take my word for it look it up. Blue dot is one of the best mag powders there is. and Scorge30 has given several good buck shot loads in one of his threads. I have used lots of powder but IMO Red Dot and Blue Dot will do almost anything you can think up to do with a shot gun. this is true for 10ga 12ga 20ga but NOT FOR .410 bore that little guy is a pain and it only uses mag pistol powders H110 imr 4227 Little Gun ww296 powders like these I have lyman shot shell books but all the powder manufacturers have their own literature that you will find helpful. I think Someone put them in a sticky somewhere. Hope this helps.
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Re: Loading for shotshells

Post by Reload3006 on Mon Dec 20, 2010 8:16 pm

I will try to do a video this holiday season. My wife has the camcorder with her she is in Michigan right now her daughter just had a little girl so we are grandparents again. when she gets back i'll see what i can get done. Maybe it will help someone.
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Re: Loading for shotshells

Post by XbonesX on Mon Dec 20, 2010 8:21 pm

#1 & 2: I do not, because you'll end up throwing them away before they are ever dirty enough that you'll actually need to clean em. If you do clean them most people just use dish soap and hot water, make sure to dry them very good, especially near the primer pocket.

#3: yes, just make sure your not using a full choke.

#4: The free data from the manufactuers. here is a link to them: http://www.atgreloading.com/t146-free-published-load-data-links . There are also these $6-7 books you can buy called Load Books ( http://www.loadbooks.com/ ) that has the data published from the major manufacturers for a single specific cartridge/caliber/gauge. They are decent, but again its just copying what you can get free.

#5: I would only go with 00 buck myself, and then I also keep some slugs on the side saddle just in-case. I know it can be debated, but I would only stick to factory rounds and/or what the local law enforcement uses for self defense.

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Re: Loading for shotshells

Post by scorge30 on Mon Dec 20, 2010 9:08 pm

Shotgun loading is a little more involved than loading metallic cartridges.

I load a lot of shotgun hulls more for fun than anything else. While you can save some $ if you shoot a lot of slugs or buck, for the most part other than pride in making something yourself, you are hard pressed to make better rounds than the factory.

One nice thing about loading your own hulls is you can recycle some of the hulls your friends shoot, or scavenge hulls from the ranges. Evilbay used to do some brisk business selling huge lots of once fired hulls. The "gun friendly" auction sites have picked up the slack since Evilbay went Kalifornia stupid.

I really like loading unique loadings to my shotgun and rounds that you cannot always buy.

I load a .715 680 gr pumpkin ball for short work in heavy brush. It is a great load for feral pigs in the blackberry thickets around here. However it kicks the stuffin' out of you & will knock your fillings loose!!

One of my favorite loads is Lyman's .681 diameter 525 gr sabot that looks like an overgrown .177 pellet. Loaded in a regular shot cup with a 20 ga felt chushion card underneath it over 32 gr of Winchester Super Field makes a great 200 yard deer killer.

I just wish Lyman made the mold in more than single. That way when I am running all three molds it would increase production. There used to be a couple of places that would production mold these Lyman slugs out of various alloys, but I seem to have lost the info.

A good home defense 3" 12 ga load is 32 gr WSF, a BPGS with an GS2 air wedge on top & appropriate thickness of felt wad to set height for either crimp or roll. I use either #4 buck, or 00 buck mixed with plated #6 shot. I prefer to use the factory stuff if my life depends on it, because I do sometimes screw one up.

For garden pests like the neighbor's cat that comes to shit in my wife's flower box, #4 rubber buck or a case full of 6mm plastic air rifle pellets puts the fear of God in that cat. Aim for the rump & watch that cat leap about 6' in the air, but it will never set foot in the garden again.

I prefer to roll crimp for most of my specialty loads, but star crimping is quick & does not require an extra step & tools. I preheat my roll crimper with a propane torch which speeds the process.

I load a lot of ITX shot from BPI for waterfowl which is great but it is more for pride of making something myself than any improved shell.

This past weekend I was shooting my home-loaded 12 ga 3.5" BB ITX while my friends were burning up cases of Black Cloud. Little difference in performance on the geese & big northern mallards over decoys.

If the hulls fall in the water or someone steps on them, I discard the hull. Once they get wet inside, it is possible to dry them in the stove but this is a bother. My wife raises holy hell with me if I put muddy shotgun hulls in her stove again.

The cost of shells is not so high that I feel the need to rescue every hull that falls in the water or gets stomped on in the boat.

I get a lot of Rio and Fiocchi hulls from the local outdoor ranges. I use these as cast aways & do not sweat it if a few of them I cannot recover. The Fiocchis use a slightly larger F616 primer. If you get the tool, you can swage the primer pocket for 209 primers.

Every once in a while someone will shoot a whole bunch of STS hulls & other than a little dumpster diving not hard to collect.

I use an old MEC Steelmaster that I have had for many years. I have one of those multi charge bars in it but there are some things it does not meter well like ITX shot & WSF for some reason. It does not meter steel shot that well either.

I have to weigh the ITX & steel shot to make sure it is correct. Sometimes I need to add a couple or take a few out but the charge bar gets me close. I use my Lee Auto Disk powder measure to measure WSF.
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Re: Loading for shotshells

Post by Reload3006 on Mon Dec 20, 2010 10:27 pm

A little trick I use for drying out shot gun hulls is since i have several thousand I am not in immediate need of any so I will pour the water out of them put them in a box and put them up in my Attic for a year. Nothing fancy but they will be nice and dry and ready to load. if they are smashed etc. I used to straighten them out and use them they load just fine. but its not worth the trouble to me anymore. I Dont worry about cleaning them unless they have mud on them then i wipe them off with a paper towel I wouldn't use mommas hand towels unless you want to join Fido in his accommodations. I do however disagree with Scorge on the not being able to load better than store bought. Because in my humble opinion I load a lot better shells than I can buy or for that matter afford to buy. But in a thread maybe this one i didn't reread it you have to work up your shotgun load the same way you would your rifle load. Search the load data and develop your load. There are a lot of factors at play on shotgun shell loads. Choke Velocity shot weight. Shot type and you have to account for it all. But that's no more scary than loading for Rifles. I do both and it pretty much is the same for both. the Danger with shotgun shells is that you don't have the visible signs of high pressure that you would have in a metallic. but believe me your shoulder will tell you as will your pattern. When you are too hot your pattern will look like a doughnut it will not have a center. That will happen before your pressures are dangerously high. BUT USE THE CORRECT POWDER. If you use a fast burning powder and think you can just dump some in there you are playing with your life. just like a rifle for larger calibers (more shot weight) you have to use slower burning powder. Thats why I like Red Dot for light trap and upland bird shot loads. and Blue Dot for heavy field and magnum loads. but those aren't the only available powders but two very good ones. Every one will develop their personal favorites for what ever reason. Mine used to be Alcan 7 for magnum and heavy field loads but Smith and Wesson bought out Alcan then dumped them. Which left a lot of us out in the cold and we had to redevelop our loads. But it can be done the biggest down fall in developing a shotgun shell is they dont just come apart like a rifle cartridge. So dont load to many at once until you have the load you are looking for.
Another huge danger in loading shells that have gotten wet and not giving them adiquate time to dry is you will have a fizzle that will leave a wad lodged in your bore. which could cause some sever damage to your gun yourself and bystanders. So if you should happen to have a fizzle stop and check your bore. But wet shells aren't the only cause of fizzles sometimes if you load a paper shell with a plastic wad it will not seal the powder and you will have a fizzle. Paper shells load the prettiest and look the best but should IMO only be loaded with Fiber Wads. to do that you will have to keep track of the pressure indicator on your mec loader in the front usually around 70lbs will make a good one and one eighth ounce load but this is not necessarily so you will just have to experiment and find out. the biggest problems you will encounter is either not enough wad or too much wad. The not enough wad will result in a crimp that folds to far in to the case and it will let shot pour out it will still shoot ok but you may not have any shot left in it when you need it. The second major problem you will encounter is too much wad shot etc. and you will roll and destroy your round in the final crimp. Usually once they are rolled they will be weakened there and will never load right so may as well cut them open and save the wad primer powder and shot.
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Re: Loading for shotshells

Post by scorge30 on Mon Dec 20, 2010 10:53 pm

While I have never loaded paper hulls, I inherited quite a few from my Grandfather when he passed but have never loaded them as they remind me of him.

BPI sells a brass "knocker" so that you can clear your barrel if you get a wad stuck in midway from a fizzle. I usually carry a segmented cleaning rod in my kit and it does not take to long to assemble the rod and push out the offending wad.

You will know the difference when you have a fizzle because the shot will roll out the barrel or falls very short.

One trick you can do if you bugger a crimp & shot can leak through it is open it back up & tuck a thin over shot card on top of the shot & then recrimp. It won't be pretty but it will shoot OK.

BPI claims marked differences in using overshot cards & not, but I have not noticed improved patterning with an over shot card, and star crimp. Of course BPI wants to sell more overshot cards, so they encourage the use.

When you roll crimp an overshot card is a must with everything but the largest projectiles like my pumpkin balls or slugs. I like the plastic clear ones from BPI for easy load ID.

I use a lot of WSF & Steel powder as well as Longshot for heavy loads.

One of the best things to have on the loading table is a good sharp pair of scissors & either a razor blade or very sharp knife. There are tools available so that you can reclaim the components from a buggered shell. I usually cut open the top to dump the shot and then pull the wad to dump the powder.

Its frustrating when you get powder & shot mixed but you can use a magnet to recover most nontox shot.

A tubing cutter from the local hardware store makes a good shot shell cutter although several companies make specialized tools for it. Its a fact you are going to bugger a few hulls before you get the feel right but once you get in the groove, you can load some pretty nice rounds.
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Re: Loading for shotshells

Post by Waldoone on Mon Dec 20, 2010 10:56 pm

Being new to shot reloading and not so new on this planet, I've learned something very important. Wisdom is not the knowing of all things but rather know where to find what you don't. This is that place. I wish to thank all who generously share their knowledge with those who seek it. Sometimes when I hear my own questions out loud, I wonder what some may think. However, those here, simply answer as best they can. I must say. I find the absence of egos refreshing to say the least.
Reload3006, until your better paid, I thank you for your time once again. As close as we live together we should get together sometime and talk shop. Lets do lunch. hehe santa santa
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Re: Loading for shotshells

Post by Reload3006 on Mon Dec 20, 2010 11:04 pm

sounds great. I'll bring ya some meat shoot emptys LOL
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Re: Loading for shotshells

Post by scorge30 on Mon Dec 20, 2010 11:51 pm

One thing I like about this forum over others is the lack of egos here. It is nice that we can disagree without this dissolving into a flame war or name calling.

Like most things there is more than one way to do something. While I can blast my fair share of ducks & geese, I am no champion skeet shooter.

I load for my own enjoyment mostly as I like doing things with my hands. I started loading shot shells as a way to keep my hands busy after the birth of our first child when I promised our little bundle of joy that I would stop smoking.

It is a sense of pride for me to be able to knock waterfowl & whatever else I may chase with shells I loaded.

While .30-06 & I may disagree over store bought / home rolled which is better, it is a good argument for the duck blind or goose pit when the action is slow. Or later in the evening when sitting around plucking birds with a few cold ones.

I do believe my slug loads are better than most of the store bought fodder. I have been able to tailor my loads for what my slug gun likes. Even shooting that monster .71 cal pumpkin ball through the rifled slug barrel, I was able to tailor it to group better by changing powder charge & even type of powder.

I like the variety of loading shotgun hulls as it gets rather boring loading 1,000 .223 55 gr plinkers.

I take careful notes of what works & log every different load. I note that I use a 1/2" fiber wad, with a pair of .135 over powder cards, & a .030 over shot card with a roll crimp. When I shoot I note how each load groups & patterns.

Your shooting companions will tell you when a round fizzles because mine look at me & ask "what the f&^k was that?"

I've also had friends run out of shells when hunting in other parts of the state or country. I'm almost always able to slide them some of my reloads.

With shooting budgets tight, loading your own can stretch your shooting budget if you shop smart. I've rarely run out of shells, except once in Ontario shooting geese when I ran out of 10 ga shells.

If you haunt the auction sites you can find lots of cheap loading supplies for hulls sometimes a lot cheaper than metallic supplies. Sometimes people are dumping old stuff that they inherited & have no use for.

The hard part in buying these lots is you will find yourself with a garage full of different fiber wads, cards, hulls, & other stuff that you have to search carefully to use.

Shotshell recipies are not mere suggestions as some would believe. Unless you are willing to risk an expensive shotgun & your anatomy, I would not fool around playing mad scientist at the loading bench.

One thing I like about the fiber cards is they are biodegradable. Some of the farmers wish that the hulls we use were more biodegradable. Around here several of the farmer's fields are littered with wads & hulls despite many years of getting turned under by the plow.
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Re: Loading for shotshells

Post by Reload3006 on Tue Dec 21, 2010 11:05 am

Wow imagine I have been green since the sixties and didnt even know it. lol! I pick up every thing a bad habit that re-loaders get into. I have been asked several times by several people why do you reload shot gun shells when " I can go to Walmart and buy 100 pack for $" this is true but I still contend that I can load better quality for the same cost. Let me also say it is for the most part great on this forum that we can disagree with out getting our feathers ruffled. So let me explain how it is that I have saved a ton of money and in my opinion loaded better shells than i can buy.
1) I buy in bulk so i have a lot of components. as you can see from my reloading set up thread. for example I caught a reloading shop going out of business sale and my Dad and I bought over a ton (yes that was over 2000 pounds) of shot from them I'm still using it today its about 20+ years old.
2) look for every opportunity to get free components. walk around the dove hunting areas and you will pick up hundreds of empties in the same spot were people were just standing and pass shooting. Some of those empties will be junk and hardly worth picking up but do the environment a favor and do so there will be enough quality empties to make it worth your while. And you can still reload them they just are very poor quality. I use them for rabbit and squirrel loads that i figure i will lose in the brush. but still try to pick up.
3) watch sales and buy in quantity i usually buy my 209 primers by the 5000 lot when they go on sale. same with powder and wads.

so what makes my shells better? OK that 100 pack you can buy from walmart usually is cheap like Winchester dove and quail loads that have from 7/8 to 1 oz loads that are very light and you will end up crippling more game than you kill with them. where as for the same money or less I have loaded a good 1 1/8 oz load that has the density of pattern and velocity to kill what i shoot at with it.
and then there is the self satisfaction that i am using ammo that I have crafted my self. not to mention that this beast of a hobby has taken on a life of its own its an activity that i thoroughly enjoy It is not for everyone. I know. and if its not for you then by all means go to Walmart and buy your cheap shells.

Also you can load shells that you cant buy for example some of Scorge30s buck shot loads for coyotes. They aren't for sale anywhere I have ever seen.

I dont advocate doing mad scientist activity by just dumping components in a case to find out what happens. But I do advocate doing Informed research and developing loads that you cant buy. Scorge30 has said on several occasions that he is anal about keeping records that is a first great step. Everyone should do so. Dont rely on memory for something as important as your life and shotgun.
Secondly remember that signs of high pressure in a shotgun will not show up until it is very dangerously high. unlike rifles where you can go by the primer etc.
thirdly research out powders and loads I know most of the books tell you don't substitute components. they say that because they don't want their rears sued off if you dump in an oz of red dot powder and 2 oz of shot and blow your head off. I don't blame them. But working up a shotgun load doesn't have to be anymore dangerous than working up a wildcat rifle load. USE GOOD COMMON SENSE. look for similar loads start low and work up. paying as much or more attention to shot pattern than anything else but yes pay attention to other signs if you are stepping up your charge in small amounts then you have a shoulder knocker and no pattern I would say you probably should stop. your hot way too hot and you probably should have noticed it before you got to that point. Also stick to similar components when working up a load. for example if you start with Winchester AA hulls stick with them, AA wad stick with it etc. keep every thing as consistent as you can. If you find you cant acheive the results you are looking for with the components you are trying to use. START OVER FROM THE BEGINNING. dont just change to Remington wad because you didnt like the results you got from a AA wad. you could dirastically change your pressures. When you find what works Lock it down and stick with it. record it in your load book and you know what you have and can use.
I have yet to load non toxic shot IE Steel. From all the warnings I get I think it is much more difficult than loading Lead. so for all the advice i have given so far make sure its Lead I dont have the experience with steel to give you any meaningful advice. AGAIN USE THIS AT YOUR OWN PERIL It has worked for me since the 60s.
A good chronograph is almost a necessity for both shotgun and rifle. I suggest every dedicated loader own one. It is the only tool you have to tell you what really is going on. If you dont have one cant get one cant afford one then STICK TO PUBLISHED RECIPES EXPLICITLY AND DO NOT DEVIATE. because you will not be able to tell if you are improving your load making it worse etc. Also dont go for blazing speed you want to achieve the highest velocity you can and still have a dense pattern. Even if it was safe (which it isn't) I ask you what good is a shotgun shell that you shoot at game or anything else that doesn't have a center in the pattern?
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Re: Loading for shotshells

Post by scorge30 on Tue Dec 21, 2010 11:56 am

.30-06 makes several great points about smart shopping & since he started reloading so long ago, he has probably saves quite a bit of money.

I've only been serious reloader since 2001 when my first child was born but come from a long line of reloaders, back to Great Grandfather who was from the Old Country & used to load 8 ga at the kitchen table with pretty basic tools.

Buying in bulk is the key & finding components cheap is another. While my father was a farmer, my momma is a failed hippy that came to Idaho to find a commune after high school & found my father & a farm to run with a yard full of kids instead.

I blame my mother for my green streak & I have driven my blind & goose pit partners blazing crazy with my constant running around picking up trash & empty hulls.

Sometimes it seems I haul out more garbage than I do birds but this has also opened doors for me. Several times I have had farmers offer to let me hunt on their property because they saw me with my ruck stuffed full of trash. They figure if I treat public hunting property like that then I am likely to treat their property as well.

I have finished hunting & in the afternoon between the flights, have gone back into the field without a shotgun & dressed in blaze orange with a rake & several garbage bags to clean up the mess. Drives me crazy to see beer cans, dip cans, soda bottles, & tons of empty hulls all over the place.

My DU chapter just organized a public shooting range clean up in the national forests. While my mobility is not what it was, I tooled around on my little ATV with my trailer & ran the bags of trash back to the dump truck. One of the gravel companies volunteered a driver & truck & we filled his dump truck twice in the day.

When we dumped the collection for sorting you should have seen the millongs of metallic cartidges & shotgun hulls we recovered.

This long-winded tirade is an example of a bad habit that loaders get into picking everything up. Especially when I see AA or STS hulls lying around. I've probably missed more birds because my head was in the grass rooting for hulls than watching the sky.

.30-06 is correct that you can loads that you cannot buy which I like. While some companies do offer 'yote shotgun loads in 12 & 20 ga, they are pricey, close to $2 per & do not seem to pattern as well as mine.

If you shoot a 16 ga you are out of luck because no company makes a 'yote load for a 16 ga. While I was in Germany I picked up an old, well-loved Suhl nitro drilling that is a 7x57 R under a pair of 16 ga barrels. Made in the early 30s with Krupp steel, I love that gun but it is a safe queen. If I hunted with it (which I won't) I would be hard pressed to find 16 ga hunting loads for it.

My saboted Lyman slugs & my honkin' pumpkin ball loads are great for running feral pigs in the brush. Either my Mossturd 500 or my Rem 870 chuck them with no issues but some of the autoloaders like my 11-87 & my buddy's SB2 will not feed them reliably.

I've learned through experimentation that my pumpkin ball loads group best with a fair-sized charge of slower powder & the ball seated as close to the roll crimp as I can get it. Stacked over a couple of felt wads, & a nitro over powder card this is a favorite load for runnin' pig in the blackberries.

Probably make a good home defense load too, but I bet any good ballistic vest would stop it.

Keeping good notes is key. Like .30-06 noted I am anal about my reloading records. I have a shelf loaded with old 3 ring binders & notebooks filled with my scribblings. I just recently switched to a lap top with anal backups.
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Re: Loading for shotshells

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