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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Was given one each box of Remington 3.5" 12ga Nitro Steel. T, TT, F. Soo few pellets the number is listed on the box....

Does anyone have any experience with these pellet sizes and what choke would one best start with to pattern? I/C?
 

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When steel first became mandatory, I bought a 10 ga gun and shot a lot of "T" shot at big geese but have long since decided that "BBB" is a better choice - hits hard enough at any reasonable range and gibes better pattern density. "F" shot was legal for us during a brief period when steel was first mandated, but was found to be ineffective due to thin patterns. I am told that "F" shot may still be legal in some areas, but "T" is the largest steel shot allowed for waterfowling in the juridictions I am familiar with.

As far as patterning, I would start with IC for the large shot sizes and work from there.
 

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I second starting with I/C, it has been the best one for me in my 10 and 12 ga guns when using pellets of this size. I generally use BBB for geese in both the 10 and 12 ga for the greater number of pellets but T gets the nod when chasing cranes and swans. I don't see much F around anymore, its patterns were too poor for long range shooting but it was dynamite on decoying geese at 20 yards. These big pellets just sailed through them and there was NO risk of chomping down on a pellet, at least not one of these. I would suspect TT would be much the same as F. With the vast improvement in steel loads, there is little use for the really big pellets anymore, BBB will often exit the body of a large Canada as far as 60 yards away.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thank you for the information. at least the T will be useful and I am guessing the TT, F will work for decoyed geese or cripple loads.
 

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BBB seems to work well for geese especially if you will be shooting greaters and lessers (or snows or specs) at any given time. Its easier for a smaller bird to slip through the pattern of larger pellets. F just doesn't have enough pellets per shell to get pattern density at the range where its energy is needed. T is even a bit thin on the patterns for 12 ga. 10 ga. its not too bad. In my sxs 10 ga. I shoot BBB 1st and T 2nd. 12Ga is BBB, BBB, T. Now if I am hunting in the decoys, its more like #2 for first shot then BB or BBB to finish. Doesn't take much to bring em down under 20 yds.
 

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I gave away all the Remington Nitro Steel that we had long ago to save us from crippled game.
 

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Check the regulations in the area you intend to hunt. In many areas BB or BBB is the largest shot size allowed.There have been a few studies that showed shot sizes larger than BBB crippled more game that they killed.
And no,I do not have the studies here to post.But if you search you can find them I am sure.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Field notes:

T worked great at the wind came up and BB was only tipping the birds. T and a Briley X2 Mod choke was capable of cleaning up several outbound birds which were only tipped with BB or smaller shot on the way into the decoys.

TT worked great on well decoyed, birds (35-50) yards and in dispatching two cripples.

Neither of these had offered any dissapointment. I saved a few of each to pattern.

The F shot went off to my brother-in-law who prefers it as his "greater canadian" load.
 

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Thanks for the info Fish. I normaly don't shoot anything higher then BBB for geese but all my shooting of greaters is done over decoys so I stick with #2's as a staple.
TT worked great on well decoyed, birds (35-50) yards and in dispatching two cripples
That is very interesting. In most cases I will go with smaller sized shot to dispatch a cripple. I take it you were hunting in a field and not over water?

At what distance were you tipping these birds with BB and the Briley X2? What load were the BB's you were shooting?
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Hello Gary,

Yes we were shooting in a field. The BB was tipping Snows at about 50 yards when the wind got above 10-12 MPH and we were shooting in to the wind.

My daughter was shooting Federal 1 1/4 BB Ultra Shock and seeing the bird get hit at 45 or so yards (35 corn rows to be exact). She changed to HeviSteel B and saw a difference in how the birds reacted to the hit and how fast they came out of the air.

She was shooting an 1100 Magnum 3", 30" Steel Shot barrel with a Trulock Precision Hunter Modified Choke in the gun. She did not like the BBB Fiocchi from 1996 and kept shooting the B Hevi Steel with good effect.

I was shooting an X2 Winchester with a Briley X2 Modified choke and Remington Nitro BB 3.5" Mag with 1 9/16 oz of shot and a bunch of other shot that I'd been given as a birthday present including Nitro Steel BB, T, TT.

Shooting was such that there were several waves of geese nicely spaced so that I could shoot one wave with one load then switch to something else. Not wanting to toss new boxes of T and TT I took them along to see what the would do.

T was very effective as the wind went up--15-18 mph and on birds that had been tipped and gotten past the shooters. No bird tipped with BB got away from a following load of Ts or TTs

TTs were used mainly on incomming birds inside of 40 yards as I was unsure of the pattern density and wanted not to resort to using the Hevishot #2 (loaded as the 3rd shot) unless I really needed it. As it turned out the TT was obviously leathal on incomming, well decoyed birds to the point of putting down two well aligned birds with one shot.

I also used it on two wounded running birds--holding for the head, one or two pellets were enough to kill and not shoot up the bird. Used a couple of the BBB Fiocchi the same way.

Would I use T in a 3.5" shell again---yes.
Would I use TT, most likely not, but if it gets given to me again it will get used on decoying birds an not think twice about using it inside 40 yards on Snow Geese.

With 20 bird limits and lots of geese I'd like to take a couple more hunts and shoot some current production BBB and #1s to see what more current loads can do. It seems that with Steel the BBB and #1 or B would be the best compromise between the big stuff and #2 and BB.

I did shoot one lone, wounded, goose with Fast Steel #2 and was not impressed, but one pellet got through to the heart and the bird was killed.

We still have a lot to learn about Gulf Coast Goose hunting--but the education is great fun!
 

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Hey Fish - Thanks for the detailed information. Again my staple is 3 or 2.75 inch 1 1/4 #2's for snow geese. We normally are taking the birds as they are coming in against the wind and most times we are shooting them at 20 yards or less.

Federal 1 1/4 BB Ultra Shock and seeing the bird get hit at 45 or so yards
Do you recall what the FPS was on those loads. I know I had an old box 1300 or so and was very disappointed with it but the newer 1550 stuff did a fine job on them last year.
My daughter
Very cool! I can't wait for my daughter (8) to be old enough to shoot. Again thanks for the detailed info and keep us posted on how your other hunts go. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Hi Gary,

This will look like we are starting a Goose Load blog. Here goes.

The BB was Federal Ultra Shock Heavy High Velocity, a load we had patterned but not shot on geese. Previously I have had good results from Federal Ultra Shock High Velocity BB and #3.

The 12 ga 3" loads we saw a difference in were:

Hevi-Steel B @ 1550 FPS

http://www.hevishot.com/products_hevisteel.html

PREMIUM ULTRA*SHOK® HEAVY HIGH VELOCITY STEEL @ 1450 FPS

http://www.federalpremium.com/ammo40/ba ... bulletwgt=

The switch made a difference in one hunter's shots fired and birds killed ratio. The gun was an 1100 Magnum Remington with Trulock M choke.

Remember, this was her first goose hunt and her first time shooting from layout. So she might not have been centering her pattern as nicely as she can on a skeet range or in a duck blind so the B may have helped with a few more pellets.

We were shooting between 35 and 45 yards and not in the more desirable range of "inside 25 yards" due to a wiggly 7 month old Lab and an 8 year old with another hunter who both had a hard time staying still when the geese started to get close.

All that being written, the BB Heavy Steel was giving me a chance to experiment wtih my T and TT. When my daugther went to the shooting Hevi Steel there was no need for follow up shots from her position.

Happy New Year and Happy Hunting,

Fish Springs
 

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I have talked to a few of my friends that have not had any luck with Heavy Steel and won't ever shoot it again. They said the patterns were so unpredictable it wasn't worth shooting it. :(
 

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I had several boxes of Federal 10 ga. 1 5/8 oz T steel 10 ga. (1350 fps) lying around so I took them on a recent cornfield goose hunt for giant Canadas. I was shooting my SP-10 with the IC lead/Mod steel choke. I was not happy with the performance of these loads. In my opinion, T shot just doesn't have the pattern density. I've done much better with BBs, especially the newer, high velocity loads.
 
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