Need 12 ga. 7/8 oz Wad Recommendations


July 24, 2013, 04:30 PM
Hi all, I've been running handloads in my trap guns for some time now and really like a 7/8 oz payload in 12 gauge. The problem has been finding the right wads. I've been making due with a Fed 12S0 wad with a .250" thick card under the shot, but it's a pain to set those up and it's an added cost. Anyone have a recommendation for a good 7/8 oz wad, preferably one that doesn't mean I have to change powder/primer/hull?

For reference, my current load is this:

Hull: Fed plastic with paper basewads
Primer: Fed 209A
Powder: Alliant e3

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July 24, 2013, 04:57 PM
I would change over to Remington Gun Club hulls, which load the same as Winchester AA, but are much cheaper, and use these wads:

So far, I've loaded about 20,000 of these in Gun Club, XTS, AA and regular Remington field hulls. They work great!

Hope this helps.


July 24, 2013, 05:04 PM
Claybusters makes a 3/4 oz. wad that works great and is reasonably priced. Can't tell you the stock number right now. Look on Ballistic Products web site.

July 24, 2013, 05:33 PM
Both Downrangr and ClayBuster make good 7/8oz wads, and - as mentioned -ClayBuster also makes a 3/4oz wad for both 12 and 20 - that is all I reload now as that will give me 533 reloads from a bag of shot.

You can order Claybusters by the case from Graf or Gamaliel at about the best prices on the Net

You are really going to want to change to Remington hulls - much better performance with the smaller payloads

Alliant only shows Federal Gold Medal and their paper hulls for use with E3 in 7/8 - if you are using the cheap wally world 4-pack Federal hulls, those are NOT the same.

Follow the recipes

July 24, 2013, 06:37 PM
Hmmm, I never knew the Federal Top Gun hulls weren't the same as Gold Medal. I think at this point I'll chuck the ones I have and start fresh with Remington hulls and either the DR or CB wads. Thanks to all for the advice.

This prompted me to do some reading on the Federal TG hulls and apparently all the problems with bad crimps I attributed to being a relatively new shotshell reloader are probably the fault of the hulls themselves.

July 24, 2013, 06:47 PM
I load 7/8 oz loads for CAS shooting and am loading for light recoil...basically equal to Winchester AA Low Noise Low Recoil....aka Featherlites. I use the 7/8 oz grey wads and a number #26 bushings with Clays. The combination fits just right and I have a good crimp. I'm not sure to what fps speed you are looking for. The load I shoot is 900-1000 fps. If you are looking for more speed you might need to go to a 1 oz wad for the 7/8 oz load to allow for the extra powder.

I use mostly Hodgdon's powder and they have a pretty extensive online database for loads with various types of wads, primers and hulls.

July 24, 2013, 08:31 PM
For Remington hulls:
The Claybuster CB0178 (silver WAA12L) is an excellent 7/8 oz wad. I also use the CB-4100 Lighting wad which is a slightly lower pressure wad. The Alliant site says use Rem 209 primers which is a quite a bit cooler than Fed209A's (my favorite primer).

I actually use both these wads with a slightly higher charge of Red Dot (18.6g) for 3/4 oz loads in 12 gauge Remington Gun Club Hulls. They break the clays with authority on the skeet field and 16 yard trap. I only shoot in the 21-23 range on skeet, but I almost always kill the 3-4-5 stations, my mess ups are on easy stations and it's more of a mental thing.

The problem with Federal Hulls is that they are straight walled hulls and tapered wall wads can leak powder around the base, but I've found that not more than a few flakes do that if the wad is pressing against the powder. The other problem is that the Fed hulls are bigger than Rem hulls (and a lot bigger than Winchester hulls) and take more powder to get a decent pressure where you don't end up with inconsistent velocities and "bloopers" in cool weather. The Fed209A primer would help you in this case.

If you need to use the cards at the bottom of the 12S0 cups in order to avoid "dished" crimps or holes in the crimp, you can set the pre-crimp down a bit more as well as the final crimp. If you end up with swirls, that's OK, it's better than a dished crimp. It will raise the pressure a bit, but unless you are in the 11,000 psi range, you won't have a problem.

You might go over to shotgunworld to ask the reloading guru's there. They are experts at this stuff.

Good luck.

July 27, 2013, 11:50 AM
Use the 12SO in STS or AA hulls and you don't need the filler card. I've shot thousands with 16.6 Clays and Winchester 209 primers.

July 29, 2013, 02:31 PM
Good to know. Anyone have a load using Fed 209 primers, e3 powder and STS hulls?

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