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Thread: Shot Loads for Rifles?

  1. #1
    Cast Boolits Owner / CEO

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    Shot Loads for Rifles?

    Anyone experimenting with Shot loads for rifles?
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    Boolit Master Outpost75's Avatar
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    I tried a few in .45 Colt and .44-40. The slow twist .44-40 was OK to 25 ft., the faster twist .45 was ineffective at 25 ft. AT 15 feet the .45 rifle pattern was about like a revolver pattern. See photos below with results:

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  3. #3
    Boolit Master
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    We used the old brass .22 version on barn rats when we were young. Within ten feet they worked. I'll try some Speer capsules tomorrow & report.(20" Rossi .357)

  4. #4
    Boolit Master wonderwolf's Avatar
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    I tested .357 mag shot loads last year in several guns with various barrel lengths. The results were the rifle length barrel was the worst performer with my assembled loads. I had sort of high hopes for the rifle performing better than the 2", 4", 5", 6" and 10" handguns but at the short range you would expect to use the loads at it was abysmal. The pattern opened up so much that shot bounced off the wood target supports....good reinforcement in wearing eye protection there!

    My loads were gas check type loads using #12 shot with a charge of bullseye. I'm not sure if a petal type wad would have helped or not.
    My firearms project blog

  5. #5
    Boolit Master
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    I did years ago for the 45-70. I could kill chukars at 15 yards, it depended on the size of the shot how much of a pattern you could hold. Pretty easy to do, I shot them in a Marlin lever gun. Single shot only.

  6. #6
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    I shot one round of 2" .410 through a Marlin 1895. At about ten yards just shooting at the ground, it had a very obvious donut shaped pattern.

    As mentioned, .22's work at very close range.

    Robert

  7. #7
    Boolit Bub
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    You have to keep the velocity down to use them in a rifle. I have loaded some in 30-30 brass using McDonald's soda straws for the shot cup. The shot cup was about 1 3/8 long and with the #10 shot sealed in at both ends with a hot iron. The resulting shot cup is recessed somewhat into the case. Worked ok at 10 feet maximum in a Contender rifle barrel.

  8. #8
    Boolit Master dnepr's Avatar
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    I have done it with my 444 marlin good for grouse to about 20 25 feet .

  9. #9
    Boolit Master
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    Reloads with the Speer capsules #8 shot .38 spl killed a paper plate at 15' out of the Rossi rifle. Single shot only. #12 shot is best for shot loads IMO.
    Best, Thomas.

  10. #10
    Boolit Master



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    As a kid I did some in 45/70 for Trapdoors. Killed a pigeon or two but patterns were poor at best.

  11. #11
    Boolit Master


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    I load shot in 45-70s for use in my TDs, mostly my carbine. Good for ground sluicing quail, pigeons, doves and grouse to about 20 yards......it is a "foraging" load not to be confused with "sporting"......

    Larry Gibson

  12. #12
    Boolit Master gpidaho's Avatar
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    Mr Peabody: How the heck did you get within 15yrds. of a chukar? lol Gp

  13. #13
    Boolit Master
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    Many moons ago I use to hunt canyons in the NW of Nevada, rock chucks, sage hens and chukars didn't see to many people back then.

  14. #14
    Boolit Master gpidaho's Avatar
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    Mr Peabody; That explains it. I farmed out in Kings River Nevada back in the 70s. Pretty sparsely populated. The ranch bordered BLM on the south end. Wish I had a shooting spot like that today. Gp

  15. #15
    Boolit Master
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    The greater the muzzle velocity the greater the dispersion.

    I once fired 1 1/8 oz #6 shot through a rifled twelve gauge at 40 yards. Target was a 3 ft x 3 ft sheet of paper. Not one pellet hit. I tried twice more with same results. Firing slugs though a smoothbore is more productive than firing shot through a rifled bore.

  16. #16
    Boolit Master
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    I have not found a long barrel helps w patterns. I remember firing some buck shot out of my mossberg w rifled barrel, did not understand why it was hitting everything but what I was aiming at. I use the 22Lr shot shells in my sons little cricket rifle, its a bit of a challenge to hit a wood boring bee, you cant aim directly at at it, but slightly to one side due to the donut.

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check