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 Post subject: Round Lead Balls
PostPosted: Sun Mar 26, 2017 2:54 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 26, 2017 2:24 pm
Posts: 7
Several years ago I bought a thousand once fired low base plastic AA hulls. I have fired all kinds of different factory slugs and just as a lark I decided to cast up a few dozen .718 round balls from wheel weights, they weigh exactly 1 1/4 oz. I tumbled them in some corn media for an hour to remove any sprue marks. I loaded up half a dozen using a W209 primer, 25 grains of Unique, a 3/8" card wad, round ball and another 1/8 card wad under the crimp. Simple and rudimentary as the load is, it shoots as well as anything I've used to date. Kicks like a mule's foot as expected, but would flatten any four legged critter on the North American Continent and punches holes as big as softballs in engine blocks. (Thought the preppers might like that!) :wink:




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 Post subject: Re: Round Lead Balls
PostPosted: Sun Mar 26, 2017 7:01 pm 
Field Grade

Joined: Thu May 06, 2010 9:30 am
Posts: 97
Kicks like a mule with only 25 grs of Unique? What kind of accuracy you get? Round balls tend to open up greatly past 50 yards.


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 Post subject: Re: Round Lead Balls
PostPosted: Mon Mar 27, 2017 7:56 am 
Field Grade

Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2012 8:03 am
Posts: 76
And the ball diameter seems a little large, if shot out of a choked gun or a tight barrel. Some slug barrels are bored tight compared to standard bore 12 gauges (0.728-9"). Just an observation.

Seems like it should shoot good out to 50 yards in the right barrel. Would make a great close range HD load. Suggest you try adding a few of the right size buckshot pellets for a 1.5 oz load (or so). Have a factory load made in Italy that uses a 0.690" ball w/ #1 buckshot. Now that kicks like a mule!


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 Post subject: Re: Round Lead Balls
PostPosted: Mon Mar 27, 2017 11:09 am 
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Joined: Sun Mar 26, 2017 2:24 pm
Posts: 7
Blood Trail wrote:
Kicks like a mule with only 25 grs of Unique? What kind of accuracy you get? Round balls tend to open up greatly past 50 yards.


Nothing as accurate as a rifle, but a center of mass chest shot at 50 yds on mule deer or elk will drop them in their tracks.


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 Post subject: Re: Round Lead Balls
PostPosted: Mon Mar 27, 2017 11:30 am 
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Joined: Sun Mar 26, 2017 2:24 pm
Posts: 7
nhithaca wrote:
And the ball diameter seems a little large, if shot out of a choked gun or a tight barrel. Some slug barrels are bored tight compared to standard bore 12 gauges (0.728-9"). Just an observation.

Seems like it should shoot good out to 50 yards in the right barrel. Would make a great close range HD load. Suggest you try adding a few of the right size buckshot pellets for a 1.5 oz load (or so). Have a factory load made in Italy that uses a 0.690" ball w/ #1 buckshot. Now that kicks like a mule!


This is definitely an application for a cylinder bore and not to be used in choked shotguns.

I tried some "Malaysian Loads" just to check the patterning effects. It was something the Aussies came up with as an investigation by fire tool in heavy undergrowth back when they were hunting down Communist insurrectionists in the Malaysian boondocks. It consisted of a mix of buck and bird shot. I heard some Diggers from the 1st RAR discussing it's effectiveness.

On another note I read some of the "After Action" reports by a few of the platoon NCO's from my old outfit the 173rd Abn Bde during the VN War. They had been wishing that we had more shotguns available as they were preferable for house to house clearing operations as the 5.56mm rounds from M-16's were causing "friendly fire" casualties on the opposite sides of the buildings. We used more than a few shotguns although they were illegal according to Geneva Convention Rules. (Btw - there weren't any rules in that war)


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 Post subject: Re: Round Lead Balls
PostPosted: Mon Mar 27, 2017 12:14 pm 
Field Grade

Joined: Thu May 06, 2010 9:30 am
Posts: 97
173rd/101st Vet wrote:
nhithaca wrote:
And the ball diameter seems a little large, if shot out of a choked gun or a tight barrel. Some slug barrels are bored tight compared to standard bore 12 gauges (0.728-9"). Just an observation.

Seems like it should shoot good out to 50 yards in the right barrel. Would make a great close range HD load. Suggest you try adding a few of the right size buckshot pellets for a 1.5 oz load (or so). Have a factory load made in Italy that uses a 0.690" ball w/ #1 buckshot. Now that kicks like a mule!


This is definitely an application for a cylinder bore and not to be used in choked shotguns.

I tried some "Malaysian Loads" just to check the patterning effects. It was something the Aussies came up with as an investigation by fire tool in heavy undergrowth back when they were hunting down Communist insurrectionists in the Malaysian boondocks. It consisted of a mix of buck and bird shot. I heard some Diggers from the 1st RAR discussing it's effectiveness.

On another note I read some of the "After Action" reports by a few of the platoon NCO's from my old outfit the 173rd Abn Bde during the VN War. They had been wishing that we had more shotguns available as they were preferable for house to house clearing operations as the 5.56mm rounds from M-16's were causing "friendly fire" casualties on the opposite sides of the buildings. We used more than a few shotguns although they were illegal according to Geneva Convention Rules. (Btw - there weren't any rules in that war)


Shotguns were never illegal in any wars. And it's not the Geneva Convention, it's the Hague Accords of 1899 that prohibited the use of small arms ammunition "designed to increase the severity of wound, or suffering by the wound."

Also, that rule only comes into to play IF the country we are fighting are signatory combatants. Non-signatories do not have to abide, then all bets are off.

So why do US snipers use hollow points (A-MAX)? Simple. Those bullets are match-grade bullets and aren't designed to expand, therefore not "increasing the severity of the wound". That issuance was passed in 1990 when the Judge Advocate Generals office declared match bullets where not covered.


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 Post subject: Re: Round Lead Balls
PostPosted: Mon Mar 27, 2017 5:18 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 26, 2017 2:24 pm
Posts: 7
Blood Trail wrote:

Shotguns were never illegal in any wars. And it's not the Geneva Convention, it's the Hague Accords of 1899 that prohibited the use of small arms ammunition "designed to increase the severity of wound, or suffering by the wound."

Also, that rule only comes into to play IF the country we are fighting are signatory combatants. Non-signatories do not have to abide, then all bets are off.

So why do US snipers use hollow points (A-MAX)? Simple. Those bullets are match-grade bullets and aren't designed to expand, therefore not "increasing the severity of the wound". That issuance was passed in 1990 when the Judge Advocate Generals office declared match bullets where not covered.


I stand corrected, (The Hague Accords of 1899). I knew I had read it somewhere thanks! I'm 73 years old and have an occasional touch of CRS :mrgreen:


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 Post subject: Re: Round Lead Balls
PostPosted: Mon Mar 27, 2017 8:14 pm 
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Joined: Sun May 17, 2015 6:25 pm
Posts: 1656
Location: On the wrong side of the river, Austin TX
Some smoothbore musket shooters have been playing around with roundballs that have been dimpled by rolling them between two coarse wood or farrier's hoof rasps. The same theory behind golf balls. Many claim it improves accuracy.
You could also play around with loading the ball in the shell using a cloth patch to take up the windage in the bore the way muzzle loaders are loaded. The friction fit of a patched ball may allow you to eliminate the top wad and crimp if you shoot a break open gun.


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 Post subject: Re: Round Lead Balls
PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2017 10:04 am 
Tournament Grade

Joined: Fri Dec 12, 2008 1:53 pm
Posts: 111
Location: Southern Illinois
I used a .690 round pure lead ball for years in reloading for whitetail deer hunting utilizing my USH 12 gauge shotgun. Using Herco powder to push a Federal S3 wad with the round ball inside gave me 2"-3" groups at 50 yards. I've even taken a couple of deer at 90+ yards by holding on the top of the back. I now shoot a Slugs-R-Us molded slug in their self-contained wad with similar accuracy and hunting results.


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 Post subject: Re: Round Lead Balls
PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2017 3:52 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 26, 2017 2:24 pm
Posts: 7
B.L.E. wrote:
Some smoothbore musket shooters have been playing around with roundballs that have been dimpled by rolling them between two coarse wood or farrier's hoof rasps. The same theory behind golf balls. Many claim it improves accuracy.
You could also play around with loading the ball in the shell using a cloth patch to take up the windage in the bore the way muzzle loaders are loaded. The friction fit of a patched ball may allow you to eliminate the top wad and crimp if you shoot a break open gun.



Good info. this is a break open gun, I features it in "Other" photos along with an ancient side-by-side I renovated. I've been thinking about the patched ball idea, will have to give both a try.

I hit an empty quart sized propane bottle at about 75 yards out and folded it in half. I chronographed this load with the 72 cal. RB ( 528 gr.) with 26 Gr. Unique at 1250 fps. According to calculations using reputable software that information translates to 1831 ft-lb energy at the muzzle, at 75 yards out it's supposedly going 1226 fps w/ 1762 ft-lbs energy which is yuge! Consistent accuracy would be a plus.


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 Post subject: Re: Round Lead Balls
PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2017 3:56 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 26, 2017 2:24 pm
Posts: 7
TRG3 wrote:
I used a .690 round pure lead ball for years in reloading for whitetail deer hunting utilizing my USH 12 gauge shotgun. Using Herco powder to push a Federal S3 wad with the round ball inside gave me 2"-3" groups at 50 yards. I've even taken a couple of deer at 90+ yards by holding on the top of the back. I now shoot a Slugs-R-Us molded slug in their self-contained wad with similar accuracy and hunting results.


Is that similar to a sabot?


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 Post subject: Re: Round Lead Balls
PostPosted: Wed Sep 13, 2017 8:50 pm 
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Joined: Fri Sep 08, 2017 9:55 pm
Posts: 3
Dig one up from a dirt bank. They squash flat until hitting the barrel. I found the light field slug (like a pellet gun bullet) in a pink 12 g wad works great. Even at 100 yds. There are loads in the powder books. Lyman made a mold for it. Been many years since experimenting with loads. Took a block of aluminum, sawed it in half, drilled it out and made my own mold. Called it the drill bit slug. It flew as good as the light field.




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