Hardcast slugs


Bob Thompson
June 27, 2003, 01:46 PM
I don't know if this has been asked before but does anybody know of any hardcast slugs out there that could be used for the large bears of Alaska ? I think Remington makes a solid copper but I also think that would be too soft for good penetration on the large bears. A 12 ga. autoloader seems to be a good choice after pepper spray is exhausted. And yes I have read most comments in the archives here and on TFL. Thanks much Bob T.

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Al Thompson
June 27, 2003, 06:26 PM
Brenneke is pretty much it. I have yet to kill anything with my stash, perhaps Dave or H&H can illuminate the issue.

Dave McCracken
June 27, 2003, 06:58 PM
I've heard from reliable sources that Park Rangers that have to trap and transport "Nuisance" bears use a pumpgun mix loaded with Brenekke slugs and buckshot. Also, with just Brenekkes.

I think the Rottweil Brenekkes by Dynamit Nobel are the ammo. They have great penetration on deer sized game and exit on broadside shots.


July 1, 2003, 01:21 PM
Remington makes a solid copper hollow point sabot. Not sure how it performs.

Federal Loads Barns X hollowpoint but these expand way to much for bear.

I plan to test someday loading hardcast .475 or .500 bullets for the linebaugh cartridges in sabots for rifled shotgun. They should perform well as long as they stabilize.

July 1, 2003, 09:37 PM
I have an old Lyman 12Ga. round ball mold . I never have loaded the hard cast .710" balls up yet as I don't normally reload for shot guns although I have an old MEC 12ga unit. Has anyone had any results or load techniques for these'punkin balls' out of a cyl barrel? I would think under 50 yds they'd be accurate enough and deadly.

July 2, 2003, 01:22 AM
Most slugs overpenetrate their intended targets, like deer and even elk.

"Hardcasting" a slug with harder alloys would be of limited utility, esp if the slug is designed to deform upon impact, like federal's hi-shock slug, or Winchester's old punkinball load. If it doesn't deform, it zips right through like a solid. Granted, a 12 ga solid is 72 caliber. Solid copper "sabot" slugs are giving up diameter and weight for a bit more velocity. Heavy slugs = more penetration. If you want to out penetrate a 3 inch 1oz MAX dram slug, you'd have to get into 2300+fps jacketed rifle ammo.

I think you are looking for an answer to a problem that doesn't exist.

July 2, 2003, 04:16 AM
Dr. Rob: Hardcast LBT style bullets from 45/475/500 revolvers work well on big and even dangerous game. Not to mention Garrette and Buffalo Bore loads for 45-70.

If you use Hard Cast sabot bullet like I plan to try, your basically getting 45-70 levels of performance and trajectory.

If you use hardcast 12 gauge bullets with a rifled barrel your using (improved hardness) old technology that was succesfully used for dangerous game in the past in Africa and India (gauge RIFLES and rifled Gauge Howdah pistols).

A 458 Win needs to use an expanding bullet to get close to the same diameter as the 12 gauge starts at. Now a 458 with a solid will out penetrate a 12 gauge slug, but I don't think most people would want to use a solid 458 on a large bear.

I suspect the difference bewteen a hardcast 12 gauge and a 458 soft is mainly more recoil and greater effective range with the 458.

Porter Rockwell
July 2, 2003, 04:43 AM
Hello, I had a chat with some of the Fed Parkies here in Anchorage and they prefer the .375 H&H so their issued Federal Slugs.
In several tests it was discovered that both the Federal and Brenneke failed to penetrate a brown bear shoulder!
The issued Federal slug is too soft and simply flattened and the BRI shattered! Much discussion about a proper hardcast slug followed, it appears that there is no commercial source for a penetrating 12ga slug except for one that is available for military use that's a tungston projectile.

Bob Thompson
July 2, 2003, 03:14 PM
Glamdring, I like your idea and thought of reloading some myself using smaller .44 or .45 caliber hardcast that I now use for my 45.70 and .444. Minimum weight would probably be 300g. with a preferance for 405s. The reason for this thread was to be able to use a quality autoloading shotgun with extended magazine and rifled barrel. I think this would be a formitable and quick weapon against all tough opponants at moderate ranges. Thanks to all for their input.

July 2, 2003, 04:54 PM
Bob Thompson: An excellent idea IMO :D I have thought about it a bit also. The Federal loads with Barnes X HP are very good expanders good for goblin or thin skin game if you want a splat bullet.

For the hardcast slugs I plan to use around 435 grain bullet (1 ounce is 437.5 grains IIRC) so load data for one ounce slugs would provide a good starting point and hopefully allow semi auto to cycle correctly.

See http://www.castperformance.com
they sell hardcast bullets. Federal's Castcore line uses their product.

I think rifled semi 12 gauge with Barnes X for softs and hardcast sabot for solid would make a great trunk gun. Ammo isn't cheap though. And it will be awhile before I am set up to reload shotgun shells.

BTW AFAIK the bullets in sabot loads are ~ .500" and I am not sure how you would load a smaller diameter bullet in the sabot. Not saying it can't be done, but bullet would be smaller in diameter and perhaps longer (depending on wt and bullet style).

July 2, 2003, 05:20 PM
Dr Rob Brenekes are much better than foster slugs for shooting bears. At least thats what the fish and wildlife troopers who work in my office say. I have seen the results of testing using foster and breneke slugs and I load my bear defense shotgun with Brenekes. Don't even bother with buck shot it will just upset the bear and make him want to eat you.

Dave McCracken
July 2, 2003, 06:45 PM
Gordon, Ballistic Products has some info on round ball loads that use standard cup style wads. Sorry, I don't have a link but their stuff is sold through Midway. They recommend a .690 ball.

Note that round (Punkin) balls are rough on chokes. Use an open choke.

August 14, 2007, 03:18 PM
I know, this post hasn't been used in years.
Has anyone shot these .690 balls in a normal cup wad effectively?

August 14, 2007, 07:55 PM
with devastating performance on game......try these guys

They're very well thought of on the Shotgun World forum. I daresay I would feel well enough armed with my 870 stocked with these to take on most things in this world:evil:.

August 14, 2007, 08:31 PM
Yup +1 on the Dixie slugs. These are the best there is when it comes to saving your bacon Right Now.


This is info from the John Linebaugh 2005 Penetration seminar with Dixie slugs.

Fellow Shooters,

This marks the second year for John Linebaughs Midwest Big Bore Seminar here in Carthage Illinois. As the host of this event I am still compiling the data into a useable format for John and for all our fellow shooters.

I called Mr Gates this evening with the results of his 12ga. Terminator slugs I shot at this event. The slugs I have are last years production around this time with the crimp groove and 740 grains wt.

The shotgun was:
Savage 210, fully rifled, bolt action with the 24 inch barrel.
Velocity: 1241 ave. 3 shots

Penetration in soaked wet newspaper stack:
Distance: 27"
Bullet condition was 100 %. Bullet penetrated straight and did not tip or yaw, nose forward. with the exception of the rifling marks, appeared undamaged and as though it could be reloaded.
Penetration in paper with bone:
( Stack contained 4" of paper, a Beef femur bone with knuckle, and more wet paper behind)
Distance: paper+ bone+ 13"
Bullet condition was approx 65 plus %. Bullet nose was damaged into the crimp groove.Bullet penetrated straight, did not tip or yaw, nose forward.

Observations: The wound channel in both tests were impressive, initally the size of a tomato paste can. As bullet slowed, wound channel reduced to over bullet size. The tramua area around the wound channel was "bruised" to a diameter significantlly larger. ( not measured)
When the bullet struck the bone in the second stack, it simply dissappeared with the exception of a 2 inch section at the top and a 3 inch section at the bottom. the middle 10 inches.... gone. Some of the bone shards were expelled from the stack to a distance of 50 ft from the test. The top 2" piece was ejected from the stack about 2 ft straight up. The display was most impressive.

I have not used this on game, but if the outcome is similar to the penetration tests, this should do admirably for the purpose for which it's designed.

I hope you will find this information helpful.

Thank you
Todd Corder

May 4, 2008, 07:55 PM

When I tested the Dixie Slugs' Terminator, .73 caliber, 730 grain hard cast-heat treated at 1200 fps, at the Linebaugh seminar last year in Jackson, MS, I was awed by the penetration and destructive power. In wet pack newspaper a Federal 400 grain Nosler Partition factory round from a .416 Rigby penetrated 40 inches. The Terminator from a 20 inch Hastings rifled barrel penetrated 39 inches and blew a much larger hole through the test medium.

There is no doubt in my mind that a reliable Remington 870, with a rifled barrel when loaded with Dixie Terminators is capable of stopping any dangerous game on this continent. Indeed this is also the least expensive true stopping rifle and ammo combination available.

Here is a link to the photo results of the seminar: http://www.shotgunworld.com/bbs/viewtopic.php?t=121981&sid=b004b299ab5045c0fa1eaafac583f141


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