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 Post subject: Shorter Barrel Pheasant Load Recommendation
PostPosted: Wed Jan 27, 2021 7:18 pm 
Field Grade

Joined: Sun Oct 02, 2011 12:50 pm
Posts: 44
I have read the pheasant load recs subject under this post and have gleaned alot of info.
some like the speed a little higher for later in the season. i am of that train of thought myself, kind of.
my question here is about getting , lets say 1300 ish feet per sec.(1 and 1/4 oz load) out of a shorter barrel and if the extra 100 ish fps is worth the extra powder and recoil?

The gun i hunt with is frugal. H&R execell, semi auto, 3 inch chamber and a 24 inch barrel.
its light, and i hit pretty well with it. i have been using Federal High Brass 12 Ga. 2 3/4" 1 1/4 Oz, #5 Lead Shot Md: H1265 that shows a vel of 1330 fps on the side of the box. i favor a modified choke.
since i am using a shorter barrel i am sure that i am no where near the listed velocity.

where i mostly hunt is an area next to a lake, public land, cared for by the state of pa and dcnr i believe. Some nice open fields, crops, hedgerows, and trees, state stocked birds.
i hunt over a pointer.

what I have to work with at this time is about 15 lbs of Lawrence magnum lead #5 shot.
about 50 rem SP12 wads, 1/2 a pound of blue dot, 1/2 a pound of unique, 1000 or so fed 209a primers and 500 once fired Remington gun club hulls.

not knowing what the future holds for 12 ga hunting ammo( and im not going to wait to find out) I am going to load a couple of boxes while its still to damn cold to do any fishing.

I will load these on a 30 something year old Lee load All press.

If the situation on loading components changes a little i can prob pick up some more sp12
wads, or if you can recomend and alternative, i will look for them as well, powder and primers in my neck of penns woods are very hard to come by, but i know a few loaders i can prob make a deal or to with for say longshot powder or something that would work better.

So, if your still reading this post , I thank you.
If you can give some advice on loading for shorter barrel shotguns and alternate wads. i am grateful.
Roland
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 Post subject: Re: Shorter Barrel Pheasant Load Recommendation
PostPosted: Wed Jan 27, 2021 7:25 pm 
Limited Edition

Joined: Fri Sep 22, 2006 10:11 pm
Posts: 327
Location: Soldotna, Alaska
Using the same loads in a 21" barrel or a 28", my loads works the same. If I miss, it isn't the loads fault.


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 Post subject: Re: Shorter Barrel Pheasant Load Recommendation
PostPosted: Wed Jan 27, 2021 7:56 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 05, 2009 10:56 pm
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Location: Central ND
In the days of BP, barrel length was a consideration.

With smokeless powder, barrel length isn't a big deal. A few, literally a few FPS one way or another is not going to affect velocity and therefore pellet energy enough to be concerned about.

Shoot the length barrel that you shoot best, that is much more important than a 24" barrel compared to a 28" barrel in regards to load velocity.

The difference 'might' be 30 to 40 FPS. Have fun with the H & R and forget about the barrel length.

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aka Mr. Tactful. Common sense no longer appears to be common.
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 Post subject: Re: Shorter Barrel Pheasant Load Recommendation
PostPosted: Wed Jan 27, 2021 8:01 pm 
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Joined: Wed Feb 20, 2008 4:41 am
Posts: 5680
The gun powders we use for shotgun load, all do a full burn in the first 18" of barrel.

So the longer the barrel, the closer you are getting the muzzle to the target and that is about it for the load part of the math regarding barrel lenght.

As for length of barrel/swing weight, that just boil down to how well the shotgun will hold it swing and follow through, or not.


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 Post subject: Re: Shorter Barrel Pheasant Load Recommendation
PostPosted: Wed Jan 27, 2021 9:30 pm 
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Posts: 2392
Location: 35 miles from Normal, Illinois (as close to normal as I'll ever be)
I have always liked Blue Dot for heavy hunting loads. But, anymore I just change the shot bottle on my handicap setup and load my 3 dram handicap load with 1-1/8 oz of either #6, #5, or #4 copper plated shot, depending on my mood.

From the Alliant Reloader's Guide. Here's a Blue Dot load with your components that's pretty close to your current shell:
Shotshell - 12 Gauge - velocity 1,350 - pressure 10,500
2 3/4-in. Remington Plastic Shells (STS, Nitro 27, Premier RXP and Gun Club)
1 1/4 shot wt.
Fed 209A
35 gr Blue Dot
SP 12

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 Post subject: Re: Shorter Barrel Pheasant Load Recommendation
PostPosted: Thu Jan 28, 2021 5:45 am 
Tournament Grade

Joined: Thu Oct 04, 2018 4:22 am
Posts: 112
Hi Roland: Thanks for posting the nice photo of your dog and the pheasants. What area in Pennsylvania do you hunt? - Ed


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 Post subject: Re: Shorter Barrel Pheasant Load Recommendation
PostPosted: Thu Jan 28, 2021 4:26 pm 
Field Grade

Joined: Sun Oct 02, 2011 12:50 pm
Posts: 44
thanks to everyone for the replies.
dano,
I didnt know that shotgun powders were as effcient as a full burn in around 18 inches or so.
Been reloading mostly rifle and pistol for the past few decades, varget, power pistol, blue dot for 200 grn lead semis in the 45 acp.
The only shot shell loading has been 1 oz with tite wad and clay busters for a few rounds of trap before opening day of small game.
Tal, thats the exact load i was looking at on the alliant site. lol, i was concerned about a bunch of unburnt powder being wasted, or gumming up the action. this is the load i will go with this year, thank you.
Ed,
im in the lehigh valley area, about 10 or so miles north of allentown. I like to hunt Beltzville lake in carbon county. its about 30 mins or so from my front door and have been hunting birds there for over 20 years.


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 Post subject: Re: Shorter Barrel Pheasant Load Recommendation
PostPosted: Thu Jan 28, 2021 6:43 pm 
Crown Grade

Joined: Mon Jun 09, 2003 12:52 am
Posts: 5742
I used to use a lot of Blue Dot for my hunting loads but gave it up when I discovered I lost a fair amount of velocity in the cold. There was a good 100 fps difference between early and late season velocities. It was also quite dirty and would contribute to operating problems in my semiautos when cold.

I gravitated to Unique as it was cleaner burning than Blue Dot and did not have near the velocity swings when cold. My loads were in the 1250 fps range and did not vary much through the season. The cleanliness was relative to Blue Dot but definitely noticeable, particularly in the winter.

As an alternative, Universal performs similarly to Unique but is even cleaner in my experience. It is my preference for hunting loads heavier than my standard target loads.


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 Post subject: Re: Shorter Barrel Pheasant Load Recommendation
PostPosted: Fri Jan 29, 2021 8:54 pm 
Field Grade

Joined: Sun Oct 02, 2011 12:50 pm
Posts: 44
uglydog,
thanks for the heads up on the blue dot and unique. Since the unique recipies use around 10 grains less powder, per the alliant website load data, for the load i want will i need any type of card or cork or over powder wad to make up the difference in powder volume?
thank you again
roland


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 Post subject: Re: Shorter Barrel Pheasant Load Recommendation
PostPosted: Fri Jan 29, 2021 9:19 pm 
Crown Grade

Joined: Mon Jun 09, 2003 12:52 am
Posts: 5742
Use the components as listed in the recipe and you will be fine. Some of the loads I've used have used the same wad with both powders, some have used different wads.


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 Post subject: Re: Shorter Barrel Pheasant Load Recommendation
PostPosted: Fri Jan 29, 2021 10:02 pm 
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Posts: 4753
Location: Annapolis, MD
roland45acp wrote:
uglydog,
thanks for the heads up on the blue dot and unique. Since the unique recipies use around 10 grains less powder, per the alliant website load data, for the load i want will i need any type of card or cork or over powder wad to make up the difference in powder volume?
thank you again
roland
Roland, if you are astute enough to recognize the significance of this detail, you do not need any help from us. Go to the head of the class!

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 Post subject: Re: Shorter Barrel Pheasant Load Recommendation
PostPosted: Sat Jan 30, 2021 12:10 am 
Tournament Grade

Joined: Mon Jul 02, 2018 3:03 pm
Posts: 131
Given the large diameter of smooth bore shotgun barrels, their internal ballistics have little in common with those of rifled long guns or rifled pistol barrels vis-a vis velocity and barrel length. After the switch from black powder to faster burning nitro powders, a shorter shotgun barrel of 24 inches was virtually as efficient for velocity purposes as the 29 or 30 inch shotgun barrel. Any "gain" in muzzle velocity for a longer shotgun barrel over a shorter shotgun barrel was minimal with the same load.

The only way to judge whether your shotgun is making the "listed velocity" on those factory loads is to shoot 10 rounds minimum through a chronograph.

And even then, who cares?

If your "shorter" barrel shoots those factory loads at 1300 FPS and my "longer" barrel shoots those same loads at 1350 FPS, that's only the difference in muzzle velocity. At 30 yards range to a target, the actual differential in our velocities will be less than 50 FPS, guaranteed. It's been proven time and time again. Round projectiles like shot pellets started at a higher muzzle speed slow down and lose velocity faster than those same pellets started at a slight slower muzzle speeds. Seems counterintuitive but it is true.

A difference of even 50 FPS in shot velocity is hardly a matter of a couple inches lead on a full 90 degree crossing bird or target at say 30 yards. No one shoots that precisely with a shotgun. On a more straightaway type shot, there is virtually no difference in required lead between the "faster" load and the "slower" load.


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 Post subject: Re: Shorter Barrel Pheasant Load Recommendation
PostPosted: Sat Jan 30, 2021 10:39 am 
Field Grade

Joined: Sun Oct 02, 2011 12:50 pm
Posts: 44
uglydog, thank you again for sharing your knowledge.
Nebs,
thank you. i have been using the trial and error method of loading for shotshells for decades.
with supplies in such high demand i am trying to have as little error as possible. I only thought to ask about the volume of the load after visiting BPI looking for more wads and seeing all they had to offer and puting the 2 together lol.
simslax,
thank you as well for your expertise.


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 Post subject: Re: Shorter Barrel Pheasant Load Recommendation
PostPosted: Sat Jan 30, 2021 10:48 am 
Diamond Grade

Joined: Fri Jan 11, 2008 5:58 pm
Posts: 1431
Location: Oklahoma
I agree with uglydog and would be using unique for the 1 1/4 oz lead load. Alliant list several loads with Unique.

As an FYI...

Sporting Arms and Manufacturers Institute (SAAMI) has voluntary industry standards published in the American National Standards which include:

1) Pellet size variations allow for +/- one pellet size (+/- .010" dia.) of variation in “game” loads and +/- ½ pellet size (+/- .005" dia.) of variation in “target” loads,

2) Load weight variations can range from +4% to -7% in game loads and +3% to -5% in target loads,

3) Pellet counts per ounce can vary by +/- 10% for both game and target loads, and

4) Load velocity can vary by +/- 90 fps for both game and target loads.

Good luck!


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 Post subject: Re: Shorter Barrel Pheasant Load Recommendation
PostPosted: Sat Jan 30, 2021 2:44 pm 
Field Grade

Joined: Sun Oct 02, 2011 12:50 pm
Posts: 44
I loaded up 2 boxes of the 5 shot using the unique recipies found on the alliant website for 1 -1/4 oz loads with the SP12 wad and Rem gun club hulls.
everything fit together just right, crimped well, and no major ratteling around of shot.
Again, I thank everyone here on the forum for your insight and willingness to share your expertise. Perhaps in the fall ill check back and post how well we do with this load.
Roland


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 Post subject: Re: Shorter Barrel Pheasant Load Recommendation
PostPosted: Sun Jan 31, 2021 11:27 pm 
Crown Grade

Joined: Sun Mar 03, 2013 11:01 am
Posts: 6390
Location: Newton Kansas
The ONLY thing you can TRY to do, "for a shorter barrel" is reduce blast by using less of faster powders. You STILL have the same pressure ceiling limitations.

ANY work to use faster powders to "reduce blast" will reduce Velocity MORE than you lost already with the short barrel.

So, decide what you want less of, less velocity, OR less muzzle blast AND even less velocity......

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I don't always venture out into the sub-freezing darkness, but when I do, it is hunting season, and I carry a Browning. Stay hungry my friends.


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 Post subject: Re: Shorter Barrel Pheasant Load Recommendation
PostPosted: Sat Feb 06, 2021 2:17 am 
Crown Grade
User avatar

Joined: Sun Jun 26, 2005 4:43 pm
Posts: 2564
Location: PA Dutch Country
roland45acp wrote:
I loaded up 2 boxes of the 5 shot using the unique recipies found on the alliant website for 1 -1/4 oz loads with the SP12 wad and Rem gun club hulls.
everything fit together just right, crimped well, and no major ratteling around of shot.
Again, I thank everyone here on the forum for your insight and willingness to share your expertise. Perhaps in the fall ill check back and post how well we do with this load.
Roland


An ounce and a quarter and Unique is what I have shot most of my pheasants with in the last 20 years. Mostly #5. AA, waa12R, unique. Good load, kicks halfway between a trap load and a 37gr blue dot load. I would feel the blue dot loads at times, shooting a light O/U with plastic buttplate.

Like Tal though, of late I have taken to just dropping #6 or #5 into a heavy trap load. 19 gr of Red Dot, mostly. AA hulls and wad. #6 does better on doves, too, and since PA is stocking about 40% hens now, the #6 are ideal because the bag often ends up with at least one hen and a handful of doves.

There was a long while when I would keep some heavy #4 in my vest for my full choke barrel, especially in corn fields, but since I've gone to an auto and a LM, there isn't really a need for #4 on birds. #4 without a full choke is counterproductive in my opinion.

Hey roland, regarding beltzville, have they cut out a ton of fencerows there the last few years? I haven't been up there the last two years. The other spots I hunt are being absolutely ruined to make "managed dove fields".

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 Post subject: Re: Shorter Barrel Pheasant Load Recommendation
PostPosted: Sun Feb 07, 2021 12:06 am 
Crown Grade

Joined: Sun Mar 03, 2013 11:01 am
Posts: 6390
Location: Newton Kansas
roland45acp wrote:
thanks to everyone for the replies.
dano,
I didnt know that shotgun powders were as effcient as a full burn in around 18 inches or so.
Been reloading mostly rifle and pistol for the past few decades, varget, power pistol, blue dot for 200 grn lead semis in the 45 acp.
The only shot shell loading has been 1 oz with tite wad and clay busters for a few rounds of trap before opening day of small game.
Tal, thats the exact load i was looking at on the alliant site. lol, i was concerned about a bunch of unburnt powder being wasted, or gumming up the action. this is the load i will go with this year, thank you.
Ed,
im in the lehigh valley area, about 10 or so miles north of allentown. I like to hunt Beltzville lake in carbon county. its about 30 mins or so from my front door and have been hunting birds there for over 20 years.

It is actually one hell of a lot less than 18 inches in which all powder is burned.

Target loads full of fast-burning powder actually burn off before the shot charge ever leaves the hull.
A big pile of Blue Dot isn't going to take a whole lot longer, certainly not 18" worth longer.

But anyhow, I decide my hunting loads for the purpose, not the barrel length.

I can use an identical deer hunting load in my 22" BAR as I can in my 18" SR25 (it shoots accurately in both).
My 2 pheasant loads are an Early Season load when I am likely to see closer birds (out in Western Ks) and a Late Season load, when the damn birds are smarter, and flush is anyone within a half mile slams a truck door too loud.

The 1-1/4 oz is in a Remington Unibody hull, 30.1gr of Longshot, a AA12F114 or DR clone wad, 5 or 6 shot.

The 1-3/8oz load is in a Federal High Power High Brass hull, RP12 wad, 40.1gr of Blue Dot.

Both lit with either Winchester or (preferably) CCI 209M primers.

Both are published loads in my manuals someplace, I pulled the above from the box stickers.

_________________
I don't always venture out into the sub-freezing darkness, but when I do, it is hunting season, and I carry a Browning. Stay hungry my friends.


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 Post subject: Re: Shorter Barrel Pheasant Load Recommendation
PostPosted: Sun Feb 07, 2021 12:13 am 
Crown Grade

Joined: Sun Mar 03, 2013 11:01 am
Posts: 6390
Location: Newton Kansas
FullandFuller wrote:
roland45acp wrote:
I loaded up 2 boxes of the 5 shot using the unique recipies found on the alliant website for 1 -1/4 oz loads with the SP12 wad and Rem gun club hulls.
everything fit together just right, crimped well, and no major ratteling around of shot.
Again, I thank everyone here on the forum for your insight and willingness to share your expertise. Perhaps in the fall ill check back and post how well we do with this load.
Roland


An ounce and a quarter and Unique is what I have shot most of my pheasants with in the last 20 years. Mostly #5. AA, waa12R, unique. Good load, kicks halfway between a trap load and a 37gr blue dot load. I would feel the blue dot loads at times, shooting a light O/U with plastic buttplate.

Like Tal though, of late I have taken to just dropping #6 or #5 into a heavy trap load. 19 gr of Red Dot, mostly. AA hulls and wad. #6 does better on doves, too, and since PA is stocking about 40% hens now, the #6 are ideal because the bag often ends up with at least one hen and a handful of doves.

There was a long while when I would keep some heavy #4 in my vest for my full choke barrel, especially in corn fields, but since I've gone to an auto and a LM, there isn't really a need for #4 on birds. #4 without a full choke is counterproductive in my opinion.

Hey roland, regarding beltzville, have they cut out a ton of fencerows there the last few years? I haven't been up there the last two years. The other spots I hunt are being absolutely ruined to make "managed dove fields".


Were I to use my 1-1/4oz Unique load on pheasants, the only thing I would change (from my Midnight Eliminations loading) would be to change the shot to 5 or 6, but I would prefer more velocity.....

No idea how many of these I've shot (thousands.....).... 25gr Unique, AA12F114 wad (or DR equivalent) in an old AACF hull. Long reach and tight from my full choke Auto-5.



_________________
I don't always venture out into the sub-freezing darkness, but when I do, it is hunting season, and I carry a Browning. Stay hungry my friends.


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