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 Post subject: Loading Federal/Herters Hulls
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2021 9:12 am 
Utility Grade

Joined: Sat Jan 09, 2021 12:08 pm
Posts: 16
I am a proficient reloader but never loaded shotgun shells before. I have a lot of Federal Top gun, Winchester, and Herters hulls and would like to start loading shotgun shells. I tried finding my answer but its very vauge. Some say only AA can be loaded because you cant load Federals and some say you only get a few loading from Federals and then I see comments about you can load Federals but its very hard to do. I'm just looking to tinker a bit and shoot some clays about once or twice a month.




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 Post subject: Re: Loading Federal/Herters Hulls
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2021 10:33 am 
Utility Grade

Joined: Wed Jan 13, 2021 12:00 am
Posts: 16
The federal’s will reload fine and make a really nice load and crimp depending on what load you choose. I use them in 20 gauge and they are one of my favorites. The reason you see mention of only loading them once or twice is the paper base wad, and worries of it breaking apart or separating. I shoot them from a side by side so I can look down the barrel after each shot to ensure there isn’t a base wad stuck in the barrel. So I feel comfortable reloading them multiple times, if shooting from a semi I would not be so comfortable after the first load or two.

The lymans manuals discuss the federal’s in there books.


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 Post subject: Re: Loading Federal/Herters Hulls
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2021 10:57 am 
Presentation Grade

Joined: Tue May 03, 2011 1:25 pm
Posts: 509
Location: New Mexico
First of all, a lot of what you "know" from cartridge loading will not directly apply to shotshell loading. Get a good shotshell loading manual to read up on the instructions, the types of hulls (and powder and wads and primers), and even get some loading data (recipes) which will work. The Lyman 5th Edition Shotshell loading manual is commonly available and has good instructions, but only has an older set of information on hulls and wads and even loading data (rather stale, and some components in their load data are no longer made).

To start with, sort out your hulls and find out which you have the most of. On your first attempt to load, make it simple and stick to using only that batch of matching hulls. Unlike cartridge loading, the differences between shotgun hulls is large enough to make for lots of headaches unless you stick to one hull only. Especially to start out.

The easiest to load 12 gauge hull would likely be your Winchester hulls. You must be aware of different hull construction that Winchester uses, and know how to identify exactly what you have. The main current-production hull from Winchester is the Winchester AA HS. It has a (usually) white plastic base wad that has a tall rim reaching up onto the outer walls of the hull. That makes it a two-piece hull. Walls being one piece of plastic, base wad being the other. If you find some Win hulls that are made differently - set them aside. Especially if it looks like the base wad is not plastic, but made of a cardboard, paper or fiber material.

A forum like this will be rather confusing until you learn a lot more about the vocabulary, which posters understand how to help a new loader, and when some are just talking about odd-ball occurrences. But a good shotshell loading manual has instructions that start with basically no assumption of prior knowledge, so they are the right place for a beginning shotshell reloader to start.

Federal makes at least three different types of hulls. Leave them for later when you can tell them apart. They are NOT hard to load, even the Federal Top Gun low price hulls. Be more careful of what you read on some forums!

Herters doesn't make any ammo, but is just the old mail-order Minnesota company brand name which has been put on at least two types of hulls (a European hull, and more recently, a Winchester hull). Leave them for later when you can tell them apart.

Now, realize that the Covi-demic has dried up the stocks of shotshell components and shotshell loaders to a great extent. This is a HARD time to try to start loading shotshells. If you do proceed, perhaps the easiest way to start is to find a used but good condition MEC 600 Junior loading press. This is a one-shell-at-a-time press, simple to operate, and parts are still quite available. They can be found on eBay or the gun auction sites, even if you can't find them new in gun shops or in on-line sporting goods sites. Normally a good used one might be $70, but with "demic" prices in effect and everyone trying to reload to make ammo, they probably will be much higher.

If you can find a fellow shooter who is a reloader, and he makes great reloads, it would be worth buying him dinner and talking about what you can do to get started with reloading!

good luck, garrisonjoe


Last edited by garrisonjoe on Mon Feb 22, 2021 2:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Loading Federal/Herters Hulls
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2021 11:44 am 
Utility Grade

Joined: Sat Jan 09, 2021 12:08 pm
Posts: 16
garrisonjoe wrote:
First of all, a lot of what you "know" from cartridge loading will not directly apply to shotshell loading. Get a good shotshell loading manual to read up on the instructions, the types of hulls (and powder and wads and primers), and even get some loading data (recipes) which will work. The Lyman 5th Edition Shotshell loading manual is commonly available and has good instructions, but only has an older set of information on hulls and wads and even loading data (rather stale, and some components in their load data are no longer made).

To start with, sort out your hulls and find out which you have the most of. On your first attempt to load, make is simple and stick to using only that batch of matching hulls. Unlike cartridge loading, the differences between shotgun hulls is large enough to make for lots of headaches unless you stick to one hull only. Especially to start out.

The easiest to load 12 gauge hull would likely be your Winchester hulls. You must be aware of different hull construction that Winchester uses, and know how to identify exactly what you have. The main current-production hull from Winchester is the Winchester AA HS. It has a (usually) white plastic base wad that has a tall rim reaching up onto the outer walls of the hull. That makes it a two-piece hull. Walls being one piece of plastic, base wad being the other. If you find some Win hulls that are made differently - set them aside. Especially if it looks like the base wad is not plastic, but made of a cardboard, paper or fiber material.

A forum like this will be rather confusing until you learn a lot more about the vocabulary, which posters understand how to help a new loader, and when some are just talking about odd-ball occurrences. But a good shotshell loading manual has instructions that start with basically no assumption of prior knowledge, so they are the right place for a beginning shotshell reloader to start.

Federal makes at least three different types of hulls. Leave them for later when you can tell them apart. They are NOT hard to load, even the Federal Top Gun low price hulls. Be more careful of what you read on some forums!

Herters doesn't make any ammo, but is just the old mail-order Minnesota company brand name which has been put on at least two types of hulls (a European hull, and more recently, a Winchester hull). Leave them for later when you can tell them apart.

Now, realize that the Covi-demic has dried up the stocks of shotshell components and shotshell loaders to a great extent. This is a HARD time to try to start loading shotshells. If you do proceed, perhaps the easiest way to start is to find a used but good condition MEC 600 Junior loading press. This is a one-shell-at-a-time press, simple to operate, and parts are still quite available. They can be found on eBay or the gun auction sites, even if you can't find them new in gun shops or in on-line sporting goods sites. Normally a good used one might be $70, but with "demic" prices in effect and everyone trying to reload to make ammo, they probably will be much higher.

If you can find a fellow shooter who is a reloader, and he makes great reloads, it would be worth buying him dinner and talking about what you can do to get started with reloading!

good luck, garrisonjoe


Thanks for the info. I planned on buying a shotgun manual. I have a mec 600 with all the pieces and parts. Just need powder, primers, wads and shot.

You lost me on the wad/hull talk. I thought the wad left the hull when fired but it seems like your telling me to look inside the hull to see what wad is in there.


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 Post subject: Re: Loading Federal/Herters Hulls
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2021 11:53 am 
Crown Grade

Joined: Mon Aug 23, 2010 9:38 pm
Posts: 2580
Location: San Jose, CA
I've had no luck reloading 12g Top Gun. I make nice looking shells but the prophylactic thin steel base gets hung up in O/U's and Autos for me. Federal Gold Medal...different answer. The cheap Winchester Super X are crap IMHO.

If you're wanting to be "budget conscious" (one of the reasons for reloading), the Remington Gun Club/Clay & Field hull is what you seek. There's "better", but you don't find them laying about much. Either have to buy them or buy more premium ammo during rebate time and collect your own empties.

And he's talking about the base wad, down where the primer is. The cheap Feds have wound paper. They can degrade or a bigger issue is retaining moisture.

_________________
Hornady Apex 91 shotshell loaders in 12 g and 20g for sale

https://www.shotgunworld.com/bbs/viewtopic.php?f=73&t=448601


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 Post subject: Re: Loading Federal/Herters Hulls
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2021 12:07 pm 
Crown Grade

Joined: Mon Jan 23, 2017 9:08 am
Posts: 2469
Location: Central NH
axis ii wrote:
garrisonjoe wrote:
First of all, a lot of what you "know" from cartridge loading will not directly apply to shotshell loading. Get a good shotshell loading manual to read up on the instructions, the types of hulls (and powder and wads and primers), and even get some loading data (recipes) which will work. The Lyman 5th Edition Shotshell loading manual is commonly available and has good instructions, but only has an older set of information on hulls and wads and even loading data (rather stale, and some components in their load data are no longer made).

To start with, sort out your hulls and find out which you have the most of. On your first attempt to load, make is simple and stick to using only that batch of matching hulls. Unlike cartridge loading, the differences between shotgun hulls is large enough to make for lots of headaches unless you stick to one hull only. Especially to start out.

The easiest to load 12 gauge hull would likely be your Winchester hulls. You must be aware of different hull construction that Winchester uses, and know how to identify exactly what you have. The main current-production hull from Winchester is the Winchester AA HS. It has a (usually) white plastic base wad that has a tall rim reaching up onto the outer walls of the hull. That makes it a two-piece hull. Walls being one piece of plastic, base wad being the other. If you find some Win hulls that are made differently - set them aside. Especially if it looks like the base wad is not plastic, but made of a cardboard, paper or fiber material.

A forum like this will be rather confusing until you learn a lot more about the vocabulary, which posters understand how to help a new loader, and when some are just talking about odd-ball occurrences. But a good shotshell loading manual has instructions that start with basically no assumption of prior knowledge, so they are the right place for a beginning shotshell reloader to start.

Federal makes at least three different types of hulls. Leave them for later when you can tell them apart. They are NOT hard to load, even the Federal Top Gun low price hulls. Be more careful of what you read on some forums!

Herters doesn't make any ammo, but is just the old mail-order Minnesota company brand name which has been put on at least two types of hulls (a European hull, and more recently, a Winchester hull). Leave them for later when you can tell them apart.

Now, realize that the Covi-demic has dried up the stocks of shotshell components and shotshell loaders to a great extent. This is a HARD time to try to start loading shotshells. If you do proceed, perhaps the easiest way to start is to find a used but good condition MEC 600 Junior loading press. This is a one-shell-at-a-time press, simple to operate, and parts are still quite available. They can be found on eBay or the gun auction sites, even if you can't find them new in gun shops or in on-line sporting goods sites. Normally a good used one might be $70, but with "demic" prices in effect and everyone trying to reload to make ammo, they probably will be much higher.

If you can find a fellow shooter who is a reloader, and he makes great reloads, it would be worth buying him dinner and talking about what you can do to get started with reloading!

good luck, garrisonjoe


Thanks for the info. I planned on buying a shotgun manual. I have a mec 600 with all the pieces and parts. Just need powder, primers, wads and shot.

You lost me on the wad/hull talk. I thought the wad left the hull when fired but it seems like your telling me to look inside the hull to see what wad is in there.

There are base wads, which are part of the hull, and wads that become part of the stack that get ejected on firing. The base wad determines part of the suitability of any hull for a given load because it affects hull volume.


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 Post subject: Re: Loading Federal/Herters Hulls
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2021 12:50 pm 
Utility Grade

Joined: Sat Jan 09, 2021 12:08 pm
Posts: 16
Jager1 wrote:
I've had no luck reloading 12g Top Gun. I make nice looking shells but the prophylactic thin steel base gets hung up in O/U's and Autos for me. Federal Gold Medal...different answer. The cheap Winchester Super X are crap IMHO.

If you're wanting to be "budget conscious" (one of the reasons for reloading), the Remington Gun Club/Clay & Field hull is what you seek. There's "better", but you don't find them laying about much. Either have to buy them or buy more premium ammo during rebate time and collect your own empties.

And he's talking about the base wad, down where the primer is. The cheap Feds have wound paper. They can degrade or a bigger issue is retaining moisture.

I was just going to ask about the Remington Gun Club hulls. I went onto Midwayusa and a few others and setup notifications for AA and STS so I will do it for Gun Club as well.


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 Post subject: Re: Loading Federal/Herters Hulls
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2021 8:20 pm 
Tournament Grade

Joined: Sun Dec 13, 2009 11:04 pm
Posts: 248
Location: Denver, CO
Axis-some great advice so far. Do you know what a "sticky" is on here? Take a look at the second choice under Topics "New Reloaders-make it easy on yourself". Get your reading glasses and a refreshing drink and start reading the 85 posts. That will help you along with your reading of Lyman's 5th manual.

All hulls can theoretically be reloaded some number of times, maybe once and maybe 10 or so times. It depends on the hull and also sometimes the gauge. It also depends on what hulls you can buy or find. It's harder to find the "good" hulls because scrounging reloaders scoop them all up when they find them. I could put my picture here.

Most would say that in 12GA, the favorite hull for reloaders are those made by Remington-STS, Nitros, Clay and Field, Gun Club and the blue promotional Peters shells. They can all use the same recipes and they do not have a separate base wad as the hull is one piece plastic. The Winchester AA-HS hulls are probably second choice and they have a separate base wad. Some like the Federal Gold Medals.

Trying to figure out some of these things can make your head spin with all the different combinations. And as someone stated trying to find the right components right now is extremely difficult. Go slow. Lot's of reading to do. And a picture related to your post topic:
Image

These are from a new project for me. Federal Top Gun (or Field and Target) These are often sold (before the panic) at Walmart and other stores in a 4-pack for about $23. Since they are at the low end of the price scale and not too desirable by reloaders you can usually find these easily in the bins. I was looking for a hull that I could easily find to load up for "one and done". The one on the left has a "dished crimp" due to an incorrect "stack height", terms that you will become familiar with as you gain experience. I improved the condition on the one on the right with a "work-around", placing a Cheerio on top of the shot to improve the stack height and get a better crimp. This load was 1 oz, W209 primer, Claybuster CB2100-12 wad, 17.5 gr of 700X and looking for 1200 fps. A forum friend (thanks Republican) has offered to send me a small sample of CB6100-12 wads to correct the stack height issue so I can put the Cheerios back in my cereal bowl.

Good luck, be patient and read a lot. There are a lot of folks on here who can be very helpful.
Tom




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