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Thread: #4 Buckshot Test loads

  1. #1
    Boolit Master

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    #4 Buckshot Test loads

    The other day I did some casting , a bunch of small batches of test bullets out of range lead

    One of the things I did was about 10 Lb of #4 Buckshot from a Lee mold
    As i use it on Coyote

    So I loaded a few "Test" loads for my Marlin 45/70 and a few #4 buck loads with a new to me data I found online ( always the "Best" place for Safe Data LOL )


    Well I went to the range and had to wait for a bench at the 200 yard backstop
    So I put a 4'x4' target at 50 yards to pattern the Buckshot load and fired 1 shot and liked the pattern

    Well I got to talking to another shooter as the Urban Rambo's shot hundreds of rounds of 7.62 x 39 rounds at "Paper" people at 200 yards
    So I looked at the 100 yard backstop benches , as I didn't feel like waiting all day for a 200 Bench

    And there sat a groundhog just in front of the backstop
    Well the range was still "Hot" so I loaded 1 round of buckshot in the 870 and did a "test" pattern at about 90 yards on the groundhog

    LOL 1 pellet hit it in the chest and all the other pellets were close
    But that was enough to make me the Hero of the Rambo's

    And the 45/70 shot the new bullet only So so with that load
    So I will have to play with that load

    Oh Well 1 less hard of hearing groundhog LOL

    John
    Yea, thou I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for thou art with me; Thy rod and thy staff, they comfort me.
    And I carry a SIG

  2. #2
    Boolit Master
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    We used to get an air gunning permit for coyotes and I used a SxS 32” full full 10 ga. loaded with 54 pellets of 4 buck factory or my handloads with as close to that many pellets as I could get.

    I have a ton of respect for 4 buck. It is certainly up to any challenge whether we are talking four legged coyotes or two or three legged!

    Three44s

  3. #3
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    Isn't #4 buck .24 caliber nominally? Seems like one pellet would be roughly a .22 short. That's a pretty good shot for 90 yards. Congrats.

  4. #4
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Johnch View Post
    The other day I did some casting , a bunch of small batches of test bullets out of range lead

    One of the things I did was about 10 Lb of #4 Buckshot from a Lee mold
    As i use it on Coyote

    So I loaded a few "Test" loads for my Marlin 45/70 and a few #4 buck loads with a new to me data I found online ( always the "Best" place for Safe Data LOL )


    Well I went to the range and had to wait for a bench at the 200 yard backstop
    So I put a 4'x4' target at 50 yards to pattern the Buckshot load and fired 1 shot and liked the pattern

    Well I got to talking to another shooter as the Urban Rambo's shot hundreds of rounds of 7.62 x 39 rounds at "Paper" people at 200 yards
    So I looked at the 100 yard backstop benches , as I didn't feel like waiting all day for a 200 Bench

    And there sat a groundhog just in front of the backstop
    Well the range was still "Hot" so I loaded 1 round of buckshot in the 870 and did a "test" pattern at about 90 yards on the groundhog

    LOL 1 pellet hit it in the chest and all the other pellets were close
    But that was enough to make me the Hero of the Rambo's

    And the 45/70 shot the new bullet only So so with that load
    So I will have to play with that load

    Oh Well 1 less hard of hearing groundhog LOL

    John
    When you load the buckshot did you cut them off for single balls or kept them in 3's like when you drop them from the mold? because i have that mold also.I have not try anything yet with the buckshot the just cast some up.
    Life Member of NRA,NTA,DAV ,ITA. Also member of FTA,CBA

  5. #5
    Boolit Master

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    Quote Originally Posted by trapper9260 View Post
    When you load the buckshot did you cut them off for single balls or kept them in 3's like when you drop them from the mold? because i have that mold also.I have not try anything yet with the buckshot the just cast some up.
    I use a sharp knife and cut them apart
    I then roll them between 2 steel plates for a few min to sort of smooth out the cut line
    LOL The last part just might be a overkill , but it only takes a short time
    I then heat treat them in the oven
    And in the end I get hard buckshot that patterns well and I can afford

    John
    Yea, thou I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for thou art with me; Thy rod and thy staff, they comfort me.
    And I carry a SIG

  6. #6
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Johnch View Post
    I use a sharp knife and cut them apart
    I then roll them between 2 steel plates for a few min to sort of smooth out the cut line
    LOL The last part just might be a overkill , but it only takes a short time
    I then heat treat them in the oven
    And in the end I get hard buckshot that patterns well and I can afford

    John
    Some people who cast round balls for muzzleloaders will place them in a case cleaner.

  7. #7
    Boolit Master
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    John,

    Well done! I am tucking that under my “hat” for later!

    Three44s

  8. #8
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Johnch View Post
    I use a sharp knife and cut them apart
    I then roll them between 2 steel plates for a few min to sort of smooth out the cut line
    LOL The last part just might be a overkill , but it only takes a short time
    I then heat treat them in the oven
    And in the end I get hard buckshot that patterns well and I can afford

    John
    Thank you .I put 00buck in a roller for balls for my muzzle loader and get a good pattern with doing the same as what you do with 2 steel plates. i did a test in the 410 with the shot and one was with out roll and one with roll the shot and the first did not pattern and the one that was did pattern. Thank you for letting me know.
    Life Member of NRA,NTA,DAV ,ITA. Also member of FTA,CBA

  9. #9
    Boolit Master pls1911's Avatar
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    I simply cut my 00 buckshot apart with side-cutters, and never worry about the nibs.
    8 fit inside a 12 gauge wad perfectly for a nice crimp.
    Out of an 18" barrel, all pellets are inside an 8" paper plate at 30 yards, most inside of 6".
    Effective...very effective.
    Salvaging old Marlins is not a pasttime...it's a passion

  10. #10
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    Gave up #4 for deer even before they made 00 the smallest. #4 for called preadators such as coyote is ok but so is copper plated #2's.

    Even for 2 legged preadators #4 can be iffy.

  11. #11
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    I agree. I'm not much of buckshot fan on deer but if I do use buckshot its at least OO. What I do used #4 for is for self defense loads. I like to load a mix of #4 and 00 for those loads. I even have some shtf loads with buck. Kind of if red October ever came about. for those I load the same duplex load but I tumble lube the buckshot. figure if I don't kill them outright there going to be tying up the doctors with infections. Silly? You bet but its something to play with.
    Quote Originally Posted by Geezer in NH View Post
    Gave up #4 for deer even before they made 00 the smallest. #4 for called preadators such as coyote is ok but so is copper plated #2's.

    Even for 2 legged preadators #4 can be iffy.
    Soldier of God, sixgun junky, Retired electrical lineman. My office was a 100 feet in the air, closer to God the better

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Geezer in NH View Post
    Gave up #4 for deer even before they made 00 the smallest. #4 for called preadators such as coyote is ok but so is copper plated #2's.

    Even for 2 legged preadators #4 can be iffy.
    I can't use Buckshot for Deer
    I only use #4 Buckshot for Coyote

    I use OO Buckshot for home defense
    As I agree #4 Buckshot may lack enough to exit and give the police that "Extra" Blood Trail LOL

    IMO around the House , I will use enough to get the job done

    John
    Yea, thou I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for thou art with me; Thy rod and thy staff, they comfort me.
    And I carry a SIG

  13. #13
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    #4 buck sounds like a great way to ruin a coyote's day. I like your pellet prep method, should yield a big improvement in patterns. I don't think it takes a lot of penetration to flatten a coyote, what do you feel is an effective range for your load?
    Endowment Life Member NRA, Life Member TSRA, Member WACA, NRA Whittington Center, BBHC
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Geezer in NH View Post
    Gave up #4 for deer even before they made 00 the smallest. #4 for called preadators such as coyote is ok but so is copper plated #2's.

    Even for 2 legged preadators #4 can be iffy.
    Back when we were able to airgun coyotes I was handloading our 10 ga. I used 4 buck and #2 nickel plated lead shot. With our 32” full/full choked SxS I really tightened up the pattern with the #2 but had more misses .... we found the pattern became too tight for our endeavor.

    But a couple of neighbors jumped a coyote standing at our boundary fence contemplating entering our range land but looking a bit reluctant. They ended the coyote’s indecision with a well placed varmint round. Upon skinning it out they said it’s backline was littered with bird shot. They immediately knew I had tangled with this coyote in the recent past.

    So with a tight pattern those smaller pellets were still not reliably penetrating in all cases. I realize that a shot from above is not the same as hitting a coyote in the boiler room from the ground, either frontal or sideways but it is what it is. My experience from rear seat of the Cub also bore out what my neighbors found. I had some percentage of shots where the coyotes looked like I thumped them yet have them continue with the tight patterned plated 2 shot. We found one such coyote on our next flight about 600 yds away from the supposed hit .... dead.

    For the better spread, shooting from a moving platform at a moving target, and having more energy per pellet, we found four buck to very good coyote medicine. If you hit them, they were DRT and as long as I did my part, it never let me down.

    Best regards

    Three44s
    Last edited by Three44s; 05-07-2018 at 10:22 AM.

  15. #15
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    I have seen more what no 4 won't do, that what it will do. I would just as soon have 2s or BBs and if I use buckshot it will be 00, or 000. Maybe if you have a shotgun that patterns tight with no 4 buck it has a use, but I don't ever want another one. I shot a huge buck, coming straight at me, at close range, in the neck and chest and another one in the back of his neck area, and even with dogs, we never got that deer. Someone gave me a couple of factory buckshot loads that day and I assumed they were 00, but they were no 4 buck. Deer didn't die because somebody killed a big buck with unusual horns in that area a week or so later.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by TXGunNut View Post
    #4 buck sounds like a great way to ruin a coyote's day. I like your pellet prep method, should yield a big improvement in patterns. I don't think it takes a lot of penetration to flatten a coyote, what do you feel is an effective range for your load?
    IMO for my hunting 75 yards is about max on a side hit , head on IMO 60 Yards is about it

    I got a big male last night with the shotgun and my #4 Buck loads
    But I couldn't get a shot till it was 20 feet away
    That one didn't get skinned out LOL

    John
    Yea, thou I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for thou art with me; Thy rod and thy staff, they comfort me.
    And I carry a SIG

  17. #17
    Boolit Master finstr's Avatar
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    I've killed coyotes in the spring while turkey hunting when the coyotes stalk my decoys. They drop instantly with a 1-7/8oz load of #6 at 40yds. So that got me to thinkin....
    In the winter months we run coyotes with hounds through farm country in southern Ontario. Usually a mix of open fields and small,thick bushlots. When the coyote won't run out into the open I take my 14" O/U into the bush and use either BB or #4B. I found that the BB was more effective at 40yds or less so I kept using increasingly smaller pellets until I settled on my Turkey loads in #5 or #4. Put through a tight turkey choke these are drt loads for a coyote at 40yds or less. No spinning or biting at the wound, no running and snarling. DRT.
    Some of the older guys in our group comment about using birdshot on coyotes but the results keep them tight lipped most times.
    Of course they still think that my short O/U patterns too openly even though I repeatedly tell them it has choke tubes. They are stuck in their mindset. The results usually speak for themselves.
    I've not tried these loads at anything more than 40ish yards. The tiny pellets likely run out of steam after that.
    Last edited by finstr; 05-08-2018 at 07:29 AM.
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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by flounderman View Post
    I have seen more what no 4 won't do, that what it will do. I would just as soon have 2s or BBs and if I use buckshot it will be 00, or 000. Maybe if you have a shotgun that patterns tight with no 4 buck it has a use, but I don't ever want another one. I shot a huge buck, coming straight at me, at close range, in the neck and chest and another one in the back of his neck area, and even with dogs, we never got that deer. Someone gave me a couple of factory buckshot loads that day and I assumed they were 00, but they were no 4 buck. Deer didn't die because somebody killed a big buck with unusual horns in that area a week or so later.
    With deer? No doubt but here that’s a rifle show. My example was with coyotes. There was an Easter Sunday when a pack of mutts were raising hell with our cow herd and my father took the lead with my brother and I flanking him with rifles. Dad was toting his double 10 loaded with those pesky lil 4 bucks and he stopped a full grown rotty at 75 paces full stop DRT broadside rolled him over in fact. One shot.

    I think in our case I would draw the line beyond broadside cougar and 4 buck/shotgun and switch to rifle for the rest of it (deer, elk etc.)

    As I recall our laws call for rifle or handgun including cougars and definitely larger species. We can’t even run dogs on coyotes anymore and never could on deer or elk.

    Different conditions and laws.

    Best regards

    Three44s
    Last edited by Three44s; 05-08-2018 at 10:23 AM.

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