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Thread: .410 (2 1/2" ) Buckshot Loads Question

  1. #1
    Boolit Master
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    .410 (2 1/2" ) Buckshot Loads Question

    I have been experimenting with the 2 1/2" .410 cartridge lately and now am looking into loading buckshot charges. My question is focused on the diameter and weight of round balls to load. The nominal choke constriction for the .410 is .390" at the muzzle wfor the tightest choke constrictions posted by owners who have measured their muzzles. The load recipe is:

    444 Marlin cases
    large pistol primer, standard
    13.0 grains #2400 powder
    Nitro card over the powder
    no shot cup
    round balls (diameter .360"), #OOO Buck, OR
    round balls (diameter .375"), for 36 caliber black powder revolver.
    Over-shot card held in place with Elmer's glue.

    The diameters of both of these size balls should not create in issue at the muzzle and each cartridge will hold only three (3) balls at a loading. However, the WEIGHT of the shot troubles me. The standard shot weight for these shells is one-half ounce (218 grains). Three balls of .360" diameter weigh 213 grains whereas three balls of the larger .375" diameter weigh 240 grains, well beyond the standard weight for this cartridge and powder charge. I am leaning toward reducing the powder charge for the heavier weight boolits down to 12.0 grains #2400 powder to avoid a pressure issue. Perhaps there are other ways to approach this issue. If anyone here can speak to this question from their experiences, please chip in. All responses are welcomed and appreciated. Thank you.

  2. #2
    Boolit Grand Master GhostHawk's Avatar
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    Back when I hunted geese with my 20 Ga about the only heavy shot you could find was #3 buck.

    If it was me, I'd either buy a bag of #4 buck or find a mold that throws about that size. Don't forget the slingshot molds.

    The .375's are IMO pushing it. Yes either lower the charge a bit or stick with the 00 buck or smaller.
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  3. #3
    Boolit Master



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    BPI buckshot manual
    https://www.ballisticproducts.com/Bu...tinfo/00MBUCK/

    Has .410 loads and lots of info for buckshot loading

  4. #4
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    W.R.Buchanan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thin Man View Post
    I have been experimenting with the 2 1/2" .410 cartridge lately and now am looking into loading buckshot charges. My question is focused on the diameter and weight of round balls to load. The nominal choke constriction for the .410 is .390" at the muzzle wfor the tightest choke constrictions posted by owners who have measured their muzzles. The load recipe is:

    444 Marlin cases
    large pistol primer, standard
    13.0 grains #2400 powder
    Nitro card over the powder
    no shot cup
    round balls (diameter .360"), #OOO Buck, OR
    round balls (diameter .375"), for 36 caliber black powder revolver.
    Over-shot card held in place with Elmer's glue.

    The diameters of both of these size balls should not create in issue at the muzzle and each cartridge will hold only three (3) balls at a loading. However, the WEIGHT of the shot troubles me. The standard shot weight for these shells is one-half ounce (218 grains). Three balls of .360" diameter weigh 213 grains whereas three balls of the larger .375" diameter weigh 240 grains, well beyond the standard weight for this cartridge and powder charge. I am leaning toward reducing the powder charge for the heavier weight boolits down to 12.0 grains #2400 powder to avoid a pressure issue. Perhaps there are other ways to approach this issue. If anyone here can speak to this question from their experiences, please chip in. All responses are welcomed and appreciated. Thank you.
    Look for loads using H110 powder, it just works better for .410 loads than 2400 does.. 2400 burns up your hulls really fast and they are usually good for only 1-2 reloadings afterwards.

    My standard load for .410 shotshells is 16.2 gr of H110 Claybuster 5050 wad 1/2 oz #9 shot and a Winchester 209 primer. I wouldn't hesitate to substitute Balls for the shot. Speed is around 1250-1300 fps. I have Federal 2 1/2" 125 gr slugs, that are running 1725fps from the factory.

    Won't make any difference in Brass 444 shells, but another 35 gr of payload weight won't make any difference either. I wouldn't worry about it. 3" .410's have 11/16 oz of shot in them and are fired at the same velocity.

    Randy
    Last edited by W.R.Buchanan; 06-20-2021 at 03:27 PM.
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  5. #5
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    I load 000 buck for my judge and can get 4 balls in a plastic hull with the wad with a roll crimp. I use 2400 powder (don't remember the charge, got it out of the BPI manual), but I do like the suggestion of using H110 instead as it's slower.

  6. #6
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    i am following this one.
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  7. #7
    Boolit Mold
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    For many years when i was younger(and dumber), I cut the crimp off of 2.5 inch Remington birdshot shells.Replaced the shot(mostly #7) with 3 handcast .375 round balls( old colt cap and ball mould) pushed down into the shot cup. A little candle wax sealed them up. At 10 yds down to point blank ranges they would kill a big hog( AKA piney woods rooter) dead right quick.Shot from an old small frame H&R 410 with a cyl. bore 18 inch barrel.

  8. #8
    Boolit Buddy

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    I have loaded up my cast OO buck into 2.5" WIN HS .410 hulls using W296 and the red wads. I found when I was testing them I would have some weaker sounding "blooper" type shots and the buck was not hitting the steel target with as much authority as others. I started looking at the wads and found that many of the wads were getting blown past the payload which was going right through the bottom of the wad. Even then most worked OK and everything was getting out the barrels I still wasn't pleased. I found that there needed to be just a bit more support to the plastic wad. I first cut some wads out of cereal boxes and dropped two of them into the wad before adding the buck. That worked well so I got some .410 overpowder card wads and seated them over the powder then inserted the wad and buck. This solved the ignition and blow through problems and the loads work fine now.

    See the pic below with the blown through wads on the left and the test wads with cardboard wads on the right.

    Click image for larger version. 

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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