Discussion Starter · #1 ·
gameandfish.about.com/lib...06402a.htmThere are three different types of shotgun barrels through which slugs can be fired: traditional smoothbore (any choke, with or without rifle-type sights); smoothbore with a screw-in rifled choke tube; or full-length rifled. In terms of ammo performance, it's the barrel that counts. The type of shotgun action - auto, pump, bolt or break-open - is not really significant. Nevertheless, the situation is not mix-and-match. For satisfactory performance, the type of slug ammunition you use needs to be matched to the type of barrel you are using.A smooth-bore slug barrel does not spin its projectile, so its range is limited. A smoothbore barrel with a screw-in rifled choke is somewhat better because it will impart at least some stabilizing spin to a departing solid or sabot-design slug, and a full-length-rifled barrel is best (which is why high-power rifles are not smoothbore). In general terms, sabots are intended to be spun. The faster they spin, the better they work, the more stable the flight of the projectile they enclose and the more consistently they separate from the bullet. So, the rule of thumb is essentially this: All types of slug ammo, sabot and non-sabot, provide their best accuracy and the longest effective range when fired in a full-rifle barrel. A smoothbore barrel with rifled choke tube will be somewhat less accurate, and a pure smoothbore offers the least accuracy. You can safely shoot all types of slugs in all types of barrels, but if you use premium-grade sabot ammo in a smoothbore, you're wasting your money, and will likely get less accuracy than with a conventional old Foster-type soft lead slug, since the sabot won't properly separate from the bullet and it actually de-stabilizes the trajectory more than a solid-type load.