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 Post subject: 2-3/4" Turkey Load for 12gauge
PostPosted: Thu Aug 13, 2009 10:20 am 
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Joined: Mon May 12, 2008 3:51 pm
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Location: Huntsville, AL
Does anybody have a good Turkey load for 2-3/4"? Which do you prefer with the smaller shell, more shot with the #5 or the more damage of #4?


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 Post subject: Re: 2-3/4" Turkey Load for 12gauge
PostPosted: Thu Aug 13, 2009 10:26 am 
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I use #6s with good results. Short magnums in #6s are all that I've ever used for turkey.

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 Post subject: Re: 2-3/4" Turkey Load for 12gauge
PostPosted: Thu Aug 13, 2009 11:08 am 
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Joined: Thu Feb 14, 2008 1:23 pm
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Location: Jackson, MS
I wouldn't go with #5 or #4s. Max size I would go with would be #6 in HTL shot, and most likely would shoot #7 Hevi-shot! I haven't piddled with much 2 3/4" HTL loading, but I could probably help you out and get you pointed in the right direction for a starting point.

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 Post subject: Re: 2-3/4" Turkey Load for 12gauge
PostPosted: Thu Aug 13, 2009 2:05 pm 
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Joined: Mon May 12, 2008 3:51 pm
Posts: 21
Location: Huntsville, AL
Thanks guys, I've always been a deer/small game hunter so this is going to be my first turkey season. I currently have a Beretta 391 Sporting Clays gun and Rem 870. The 391 is a 3" gun but has some fancy metal work and a 30" barrel so I'm not taking it to the woods. My 870 on the other hand has a 22" barrel and nothing fancy at all on it, but it is only chambered for 2-3/4.

I checked at Gander Mountain and it would be cheaper for me to pick up a 5lb box of shot and a 1-1/2 oz charge bar for my MEC than it would be to pick up a couple of boxes of high brass turkey loads.


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 Post subject: Re: 2-3/4" Turkey Load for 12gauge
PostPosted: Thu Aug 13, 2009 7:30 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jan 11, 2008 5:58 pm
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Win. XX Magnum load -- 12ga 2 3/4" 1 1/2 oz #5 lead w/ buffer. The best 12ga 2 3/4" lead turkey load, period. You probably can't load them any better and you don't need many for turkeys so unless you just want to shoot handloads go with the factory loads.

You didn't say what choke it had but you need to pattern your gun at 40 yards, to make sure it maintains good head and neck pattern density. Keep your shots inside of 40 yards and they will all be dead!

Good luck.


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 Post subject: Re: 2-3/4" Turkey Load for 12gauge
PostPosted: Thu Aug 13, 2009 9:32 pm 
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Evidently I haven't been using the best 12 Gauge 2 3/4" Turkey load, but mine (with variations) has done me well since the '60s.

The one I put together now for both my sons and myself is:

Federal Hi-Power plastic hull.
W209 Primer.
37.5 Grains Blue Dot.
Card OP Wad, fiber wad collumn.
1 1/2 Ounces of #2s (for me), #4s (one son) or #5s (other son).

Started using AL-7 with Federal paper hulls, then Herco & HS-7, now the Blue Dot.

DC


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 Post subject: Re: 2-3/4" Turkey Load for 12gauge
PostPosted: Fri Aug 14, 2009 9:18 am 
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Joined: Mon May 12, 2008 3:51 pm
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Location: Huntsville, AL
Joe Hunter wrote:
You didn't say what choke it had but you need to pattern your gun at 40 yards, to make sure it maintains good head and neck pattern density. Keep your shots inside of 40 yards and they will all be dead!

Good luck.


The 870 is a fixed choke at IC, but I'm sending it in to the guy recommended on the Gunsmithing board to get the barrel cut down and threaded for Remchokes or Briley thin-walls. I'll be trying a full and X-full to see what patterns better.


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 Post subject: Re: 2-3/4" Turkey Load for 12gauge
PostPosted: Fri Aug 14, 2009 5:48 pm 
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jack -- I guess I should of said IMO they are the best 2 3/4" factory turkey load. If you want to try and reload to copy or surpass them you might be able to, but it will be tough.

If you want some buffered mag load recepies look into Roster's buffered loads, some are in the Lyman Third Edition manual and I think he sells a manual too.

Yes, try that full and x-full at the pattern board. There's no reason why you shouldn't be able to get 100% kills inside of 40 yards with a little experimentation of loads and chokes, and as long as you do your part by putting the pattern on his head/neck.

Here's an article on factory 12ga 3" turkey loads you might be interested in reading since it covers turkey loads, pellets, patterning etc.

http://www.wildlifedepartment.com/turkey_loads.htm

Good luck.


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 Post subject: Re: 2-3/4" Turkey Load for 12gauge
PostPosted: Mon Aug 17, 2009 1:52 pm 
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I load up a 2-3/4" 1-5/8oz. load of 18g/cc (TSS) #9x8 shot.

It's a wicked load. Far better downrange pellet penetration than #4 lead, with three times the number of pellets on target. Devastating.

After many hundreds of turkey loads tested and patterned, I would strongly advise against #2 lead -- it's a recipe for crippling. #4 lead is marginal, IMO. Go with #6 or #7 Hevishot for a big step up in performance. The new 15g/cc tungsten and 18g/cc tungsten is far superior, but there is no established data for that shot in turkey loads.


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 Post subject: Re: 2-3/4" Turkey Load for 12gauge
PostPosted: Tue Aug 18, 2009 7:27 am 
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Location: Monroe, Wisconsin
Before I made my own shot, I tried lead 4's, 5's and 6's. I prefered 5's, as the main turkey load :D

Now that I have been making my own shot, I take the bigger stuff, and load it up and it does wonderful things to turkeys :) It flattens them birds, right to the ground :D

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 Post subject: Re: 2-3/4" Turkey Load for 12gauge
PostPosted: Wed Aug 19, 2009 3:55 am 
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hawglips wrote:
After many hundreds of turkey loads tested and patterned, I would strongly advise against #2 lead -- it's a recipe for crippling.

Would you be willing to provide a few details of the results of the hundreds of tests that prove #2 lead shot to be a crippler?

DC


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 Post subject: Re: 2-3/4" Turkey Load for 12gauge
PostPosted: Wed Aug 19, 2009 7:32 am 
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I would think by using number 2 shot, you would be loosing the density of the pattern, therefore you are less apt to have a piece of shot, hit the spine or brain of the turkey. If you had 15 yard shots or less at turkeys ..... The 2's might still work, cause the dense pattern would still be there at 15 yards. A high velocity trap load would also kill a turkey at 15 yards or less :?

Now if you were shooting the turkey in the body, the 2's might work better, cause they will penatrate deeper. I have body shot flying turkeys, and dropped them like a big pheasant, with my 10 gauge. Since that time, I started using my 20 gauge, and just call them in :)

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 Post subject: Re: 2-3/4" Turkey Load for 12gauge
PostPosted: Wed Aug 19, 2009 8:05 am 
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.45 COLT wrote:
hawglips wrote:
After many hundreds of turkey loads tested and patterned, I would strongly advise against #2 lead -- it's a recipe for crippling.

Would you be willing to provide a few details of the results of the hundreds of tests that prove #2 lead shot to be a crippler?

DC


Colt, I beg your pardon, but I think you are misreading my statement. So, please let me clarify.

I have shot, patterned and performed penetration tests on many hundreds of turkey loads in a quest to gain insight into them come up with a better mousetrap. Over the years, I have also dissected many different turkey loads in order to see what makes them tick so well, or so poorly, as the case may be.

Turkey loads, unlike wingshooting loads, need to produce very dense patterns with shot capable of penetrating a turkey's head and neck and disabling it with brain and spinal column penetration. It's a relatively small target. So, a pattern that will give you consistently dense coverage of the target up to a specific range is needed. Traditionally, the popular max range is around 40 yds., but that can and should vary depending on what the hunter has found the maximum safe range to shoot his gun/choke/ammo combination to be. (With my handloads, I get a dense, lethal pattern much, much further than that. But every hunter needs to pattern his own gun/choke/ammo combo to determine what that range is before he heads out and starts shooting at turkeys with it. That's a different topic -- but it should be standard practice for all turkey hunters.)

My investigation and research brought me to the inescapable and clear conclusion that lead #2 is a poor turkey load. I say this with no hesitation whatsoever. And with some passion. I must admit that I cringe whenever I see anyone bring it up as a viable turkey load.

Number one, it has a very sparse pattern. A 1-7/8 oz. load of lead number 2s has approximately 163 TOTAL pellets in the shell before the primer is even punched by the firing pin. (I will not shoot a load that does not get at least that many pellets in a 10" circle at 40 yds, much less one that only has that many in the entire shell.) A typical 10" pattern of lead #2s at 40 yds will have around 30 - 50 pellets in it. The pattern at that range consists mostly of gaping holes inviting distressing misses. If the turkey's brain or spinal column is hit, it's mostly luck. It's a crap shoot with lead 2s.

But to compound a bad situation, the pellets retain enough energy to penetrate and do damage at ranges much farther than that, increasing the chances of cripples that run or fly off and die later on.

So, with lead 2s we've got the losing combination of sparse patterns at all ranges, and a significantly extended pellet crippling range.

Why do that when there are SO many better options available?

There is no reason to shoot lead #2s. Every major shell manufacturer now offers much improved and much more humane heavier-than-lead loads in 12 g/cc to 15g/cc shot. We get the best of both worlds with those -- denser patterns and increased knockdown power at all viable ranges, while increasing your chances of a clean kill every time. There are also custom loaders like Nitro Ammunition that load up such shells. There is even 18g/cc shot available for handloaders, which includes most everybody on this board.


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 Post subject: Re: 2-3/4" Turkey Load for 12gauge
PostPosted: Wed Aug 19, 2009 9:36 am 
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Joined: Thu Feb 14, 2008 1:23 pm
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I agree with Hal 110%, I too have tested and dissected many handloads, as well as factory loads, and there is just no comparison between Lead loads, and any HTL loads (H12, H13, T15, or 18g/cc Tungsten). Any HTL is mountains above Lead in both density of pellet count and downrange energy and penetration.

I personally wouldn't shoot anything larger than #6 HTL at a turkey, and probably wouldn't shoot anything larger than #6 lead at a turkey (that is if I ever shoot lead at a turkey again). There is just no need in it. As Hal said basically #4 and larger lead is just a recipe for crippling, simply because of the lack of pattern density.

Hal,

I think they need to see some of your penetration tests with #4 Lead vs. HTL shot! :D

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 Post subject: Re: 2-3/4" Turkey Load for 12gauge
PostPosted: Wed Aug 19, 2009 10:06 am 
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slickyboyboo wrote:
I agree with Hal 110%, I too have tested and dissected many handloads, as well as factory loads, and there is just no comparison between Lead loads, and any HTL loads (H12, H13, T15, or 18g/cc Tungsten). Any HTL is mountains above Lead in both density of pellet count and downrange energy and penetration.

I personally wouldn't shoot anything larger than #6 HTL at a turkey, and probably wouldn't shoot anything larger than #6 lead at a turkey (that is if I ever shoot lead at a turkey again). There is just no need in it. As Hal said basically #4 and larger lead is just a recipe for crippling, simply because of the lack of pattern density.

Hal,

I think they need to see some of your penetration tests with #4 Lead vs. HTL shot! :D



OK.

Using 40 yds and sheet metal, I have compared various loads in order to gauge the penetration capabilities of the pellets at given velocities.

Here is what #4 copper plated lead, Hevishot #7s, Hevi-13 #6s, and 18g/cc #9s do to the same sheet metal at 40 yards:

#4 copper plated lead, Federal Premium Magum, "high velocity"
Image

#7 Hevishot (Nitros #7s, 1200 + fps)
Image

#6 Hevi-13, 1090 fps
Image

#9 18g/cc handloads, ~1100 fps
Image


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 Post subject: Re: 2-3/4" Turkey Load for 12gauge
PostPosted: Wed Aug 19, 2009 10:32 am 
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And you can see that a #9x8 18g/cc handload at approx 1100 fps penetrates and patterns much better at 60 yds than the #4 lead does at 40 yds.

60 yds, 18g/cc, 2 oz., 9x8, 135 hits in 10" circle (Mossberg 500, 28" barrel, .670 Wrights choke)

Image

60 yds, 18g/cc 9x8s
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 Post subject: Re: 2-3/4" Turkey Load for 12gauge
PostPosted: Wed Aug 19, 2009 10:17 pm 
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hawglips

I have no doubt that your loads work very well. Reason I question the 2=cripple idea is that I’ve been using 2s on turkey ever since I started hunting them, somewhere around 1956 or so. Started putting the load together myself in ’59, long before non-tox and before plastic one-piece wads, essentially the same load my Grandfathers used in the 1800s. Powders have changed, not much else. I’ve never had any problem with cripples or runners.

I tear down factory loads all the time, tinker with loads, but never had any reason to change my Turkey load. Up until last year I had a flock of Narragansett’s that I would try out my latest and greatest on. My neighbors ate more turkey than most folks. My boys both use the old load, although one son uses 5s, the other 4s. Suits their hunting better than 2s.

DC


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 Post subject: Re: 2-3/4" Turkey Load for 12gauge
PostPosted: Wed Aug 19, 2009 10:35 pm 
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This subject holds great interest for all. Here's a relevant experience with loads & Chokes.

viewtopic.php?f=87&t=184172

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 Post subject: Re: 2-3/4" Turkey Load for 12gauge
PostPosted: Thu Aug 20, 2009 7:28 am 
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Colt, I can certainly appreciate that.

Do you have any pictures of your pattern you can share?


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 Post subject: Re: 2-3/4" Turkey Load for 12gauge
PostPosted: Thu Aug 20, 2009 9:56 pm 
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I don't have a camera. That's one load I never did the "Standardl" (30", 40 Yards) with. Every time I load up a new bunch, I draw pictures of a Turkey (from certain angles it looks more like a horse, or a 1956 Chevrolet convertable) and hang one at 35 yards, one at 50. Consistantly will put 35+ pellets where I expect at 35. At 50 yards, it's a little too sparse for a reliable shot, so I won't shoot beyond 40 or so. That's with a 1 1/2 ounce load, about 128 pellets, fixed Full choke Wingmaster and a fixed Full Sears Model 20.

DC

DC


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