Shotgun Slug Loading Questions

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  • Last Post 21 February 2020
tlkeizer posted this 14 February 2020

Greetings,

A few years ago I inherited a bunch of 12 gauge cast shotgun slugs, Foster type with no brace like Lee has in the hollow skirt of their mold, and I was wondering how much wadding goes into the skirt upon firing using fiber wads, what type are used, and how well do modern plastic wads work?  When I load mine' balls or hollow base bullets in my black powder rifles I let the powder fill the vacant space as it will or will not when I seat the bullet.  Using modern powders for the shotgun slug pretty much require wads and spacing fillers.  My father reloaded his own, but I have none of his data.  The mold is a Lyman 1 oz mold.  I would appreciate any useful data.  I have no fiber wads or over the powder nitro powder wads at this time, so whatever I decide upon will have to be purchased.  I remember using over the nitro powder wads and fiber wads when we first started reloading shotgun shells back when I was a lad, and I think my father used the wads he still had after plastic wads became the norm.  He hunted deer very successfully near Winterset in Iowa using his reloads.

Thank You

TK

 

 

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M3 Mitch posted this 14 February 2020

I don't know the answers to your questions, but, probably Ballistic Products has what you want.  Last time I checked, they had old school wads.

Pretty sure you need old school wads for slugs, and of course a good manual will be needed to specify a load.

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Ken Campbell Iowa posted this 14 February 2020

... there was an article in the REAL american rifleman about 1965 or so ...about improving the old Lyman type hollow slug ...

mainly, it needs some hard wads right under the slug ... like 1 or 2 hard cardboard ....

i played with the lyman set... swaged, not swaged ... ( don't bother swaging them ) etc... back then ... i used Unique for the powder, burned ok in hot loads ... and kicked the crap out of me but was fun for big mud chunks ... oh, they have to fit snug in the barrel ( !! ) ... and at best in my modified choke shot about 4 inches at 50 yards .

can you believe i am from Winterset and have never even shot at a deer in my life ? .... they eat out of my bird feeder and bed down in my back yard weed patch ... my neighbors all have 2 freezers and they give me more venison than i can eat anyway...

oh, if the slugs aren't snug, you might melt them down into soft lead and buy some $5 new fangled saboted slugs that shoot 4 moa at 150 yards ...

ken

 

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45 2.1 posted this 14 February 2020

Greetings,

A few years ago I inherited a bunch of 12 gauge cast shotgun slugs, Foster type with no brace like Lee has in the hollow skirt of their mold, and I was wondering how much wadding goes into the skirt upon firing using fiber wads, Yes, some wad materials do and unbalance the slug  what type are used, and how well do modern plastic wads work Not well for that slug type?  When I load mine' balls or hollow base bullets in my black powder rifles I let the powder fill the vacant space as it will or will not when I seat the bullet.  Using modern powders for the shotgun slug pretty much require wads and spacing fillers.  My father reloaded his own, but I have none of his data.  The mold is a Lyman 1 oz mold.  I would appreciate any useful data.  I have no fiber wads or over the powder nitro powder wads at this time, so whatever I decide upon will have to be purchased.  I remember using over the nitro powder wads and fiber wads when we first started reloading shotgun shells back when I was a lad, and I think my father used the wads he still had after plastic wads became the norm.  He hunted deer very successfully near Winterset in Iowa using his reloads.

Thank You

TK

 As mentioned "Ballistic Products" has a very good on line catalog. Lyman shotgun slug data can be found in the 45th edition cast bullet manual. You will need a fiber cushion wad, hard card wads and a BP over the powder plastic gas seal wad and a roll crimper for a hand drill or drill press if you have one. The data lists the powder type and wad combinations. The base of the slug can be filled with parafin or hot glue to stop the wads from pushing into the base. I followed the manual loqding instructions circa 1972 and got very good accuracy out of a H&R slug gun. Good Luck

 

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Squid Boy posted this 14 February 2020

Go to Ballistic Products and click on "Load of the Week". They will want you to agree to their terms and then take you to the latest loading which is for 1-7/8" long shells. Scroll down to the bottom and click on "Archived Loads" that will take you to a long list of loads. Look down near the bottom for "Lee Key Drive Slug Loads" and "Lee Slug Loads". I think that data would help you get going using your slug. Squid Boy

https://www.ballisticproducts.com/load14_04_25.htm

"Squid Pro Quo"

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GP Idaho posted this 14 February 2020

I PM'd you Terry. Gp

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tlkeizer posted this 16 February 2020

Greetings,

Well, tried to slug the barrel, but the slugs fell through without slowing down.  Paper patched some slugs, they needed some pushing to get through (not excessive), and measured .720 and .722 right after pushing through the barrel and again a couple hours later.

With spring coming soon, Johnny Horton's song about Springtime in Alaska, and as the day's high was about minus 8, there won't be a hurry to get out to the range; attending my brother'e retirement the end of the month in Hawaii seems a better choice right now, and there, unlike here, I can find a white golf ball most of the time; I usually leave one or two per trip to appease course.

Anyway, thank you for all the responses.  I will keep all interested informed as I pursue this further later.

TK

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GBertolet posted this 16 February 2020

I have that mold. The slugs cast out at .705 or so in diameter. This is too small to get any serious accuracy out of, as is. First I tried using adhesive mailing labels for paper patching. This helped a little, increasing the diameter,and stopped leading. The walls of the skirt are so thin on this mold, they tend to collapse upon firing. I then tried filling the hollow base with hot glue, which fixed that issue, and prevented wads from being blown up into the cavity. Accuracy was inconsistent. First a decent group of 3 inches at 25 yards, then , pie plate size groups at next session. I tried on last thing. I put the mold in my lathe, and with a boring bar I increased the mold to cast a little over .730 diameter. By the way I was using a 1100 Rem, alternating between a rifled choke tube, and a I/C choke tube for my testing.

Shot a little better, but still not as well as I would like. I wound up buying a NEF Ultra Slug Hunter, with a fully rifled barrel, and discovered the .735 round ball, which shot great, and I gave up on the forster slug.

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tlkeizer posted this 17 February 2020

Greetings,

GBertolet, my father used an 1100 with modified choke, bought long before changeable choke tubes.  They did well enough for him to be satisfied but I have no idea how well they shot.  He started deer hunting after I joined the Army,  and casting his own slugs after that.  All I know is he used fiber wads.  When I moved to Alaska he was done deer hunting so slug loads never really came up in conversations other than that is what he used in Iowa.  If you used choke tubes, your 1100 is a lot newer than his was.   Thank you for the idea of using a lathe on the mold.

More later when I actually get out to shoot.

TK

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M3 Mitch posted this 19 February 2020

What shotgun are you using to shoot the slugs?  If it's one you can get a factory or aftermarket slug barrel for, if you are serious about getting accuracy, probably one of these barrels would be worth getting.  Of course a fully rifled barrel would be the best.

Me, personally, I have not done much with shotgun slugs as I can hunt with a rifle here and in all neighboring states in the PNW area, Lord knows I have plenty of rifles to choose from, even a humble 30-30 M94 carbine will generally give better accuracy than a guy can get from slugs, unless the slug shooter really knows his stuff and probably has a rifled specialty barrel.  Of course in Iowa you are stuck with slugs unless they have jumped on the .350 Legend and similar straight wall rifle rounds as being allowable for deer.

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tlkeizer posted this 20 February 2020

Greetings,

M3 Mitch, I have a Hastings Rifled Slug Barrel for my Wingmaster 870.  I never did like a bead front sight, so after a couple years I applied a stone to the bead one evening and squared it up.  Works well enough for me that Remington slugs give a 3 inch group at 50 yards.  I wouldn't venture on this expedition except why not?  I got a great deal from Walmart a number of years ago when the local store was selling out a number of shooting products, and then was given a bunch of boxes of factory slug loads so I have more than enough to shoot.  I just figured I would try to get a reload to shoot as well or better than the factory loads as long as I had a box full of cast slugs and the mold to make more.  Up here in Alaska I don't really see a need for me to do a lot of hunting with the slugs, I have rifles for that, but the ongoing exercise gives me something to do that I enjoy.

One of the things I will be watching for when I do get out to shoot is how the skirts respond, this after reading GBertolet's comment on skirt failure.  My thought on this right now is that if the skirts fail, I may have to find someone to enlarge the mold for thicker skirts which theoretically will reduce the amount of paper patching needed.  All in the future of course, first I need to get the actual rounds loaded and then get out to the range.

TK

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Squid Boy posted this 20 February 2020

Long ago I attended a "Diana" match at Central Jersey Rifle & Pistol. That was shotguns with slugs out to 200 yards. Guys shooting modified 1100's and such with Hastings rifled barrels, scopes and hand loaded sabot slugs and grouping under three inches off the bench. I shoot a 12 bore Paradox and it will give three inch groups from both barrels with hand loaded 740 grain slugs at 100 if I hold up my end. A good slug gun is an awesome thing. Squid Boy

"Squid Pro Quo"

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M3 Mitch posted this 20 February 2020

OK, I certainly can understand the "because it is there" reasoning.  I have not kept up with what can be done with slugs, and certainly agree that if you can hold 3" with slugs at 200 yards, that is an impressive load.  A rifled slug barrel or a paradox gun is a completely different breed of cat from a smoothbore. 

Most factory loads feature rifling on the slug.  Does anyone know, if this rifling does anything?  I don't see it causing rotation while in the barrel, maybe once out in the air it does start some rotation?

Is there any kit out there to make Brenneke type slugs?  I have always read that if you were going to hunt with slugs, the Brenneke was the best you could get.

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GP Idaho posted this 21 February 2020

Hello all; For those of you interested in shooting slugs from shotguns, I would recommend you look at the threads  Super Blazing Sabots by Ajay Madan  (A Sticky) and the 12ga FH Slug tester  over a Boolits  Loads from 2 1/2" 410s  up to some 12ga cannon fire 750gr. slugs @ 2500fps using modified 50 BMG cases. Gp

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