Shotshell longevity and size question


September 17, 2006, 09:50 PM
I heard that shotgun shells would go bad before centerfire cartridges, is this true?

Also will #4 or #1 buck be just as efective in stopping large unwelcome critters;) within 10-30 yrds just as well as 00buck? The reason I ask is one of my 870's with the 18" CYL borepatterns these much better than 00.

BTW my shells are stored in the house and in the gun safe with the use of disectent and I have over 200 rounds of 00buck that is over 5 - 6 years old.

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Dave McCracken
September 17, 2006, 11:23 PM
I fired off a couple paper case duck loads from the 50s recently. They had been kept cool and dry. Worked fine.

Shotshells kept cool and dry last an incredibly long time. Only milspec ammo is better.

Large,unwelcome critters like Bear and Boar are best quieted with slugs if one has a shotgun.

Wild boar hunters do not use buck much. Park rangers dealing with nuisance bruins favor Brenekke slugs.

1 buck is excellent for anti personnel use. 4, while the FBI's choice, is closer to borderline.

I've seen plenty of shotguns that had troubles with one or two brands of 00 but not any that had trouble with all 00. Try some different loads and see.

I patterned some Fed Classic recently. Good results out to 25 yards.

September 18, 2006, 08:44 AM
To back up Dave's comment, I've taken a couple birds with shotshells (paper-hulled Winchester high-brass) which my dad purchased sometime in the mid-50's.

September 18, 2006, 04:56 PM
Thanks guys I will try to find some more #1 buck but its hard to find around here. As for when isaid critters I mainly meant the unwelcome kind that might break in a home at night.

September 20, 2006, 02:09 PM
I recently shot some old paper-hull shells of unknown vintage..probably early 60's or so. All went BOOM! on request.

Now, they had been stored indoors all this time, with a max temp range over the years of 65-85 degrees.

A few were difficult to chamber/extract, but had no separations or other oddities.

As to the buckshot question, my Maverick 88 with the 18-1/2" cylinder bored barrel prefers the Rem 3" #4 Buck over all others. This load will put most of the pellets in a standard sillouhette @25Yds, while with 0B or larger, I MIGHT get 1 or 2 on the paper.

September 23, 2006, 10:14 PM
If you hit someone with 00, #1, or #4 at a range normally found INSIDE a house they are going down for the count. At 10 yards it would be difficult to tell the patterns apart. The pattern is so tight at that distance that it will look more like a large ragged hole, hell the coroner will probably find the wad inside of them at 10 yards.

One might argue one size shot over another is best for intruders, but at 10 yards I would consider the argument theoretical at best. I wouldn't make a special trip to replace the #4 shot. If you feel you need it, just pick up some larger shot next time it's convenient.

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