Winchester BRI slugs


September 15, 2013, 03:12 PM
The other day I was going through some of my shotgun ammo and came across 3 Winchester Supreme HI Impact 12GA 3" BRI slugs. I bought a couple boxes of these for deer season back in 1993 when I was 17, these 3 are all that are left. I used them in my Mossberg 500 that deer season to good effect on my first deer. She was all of 45 yards away and dropped like a sack of bricks at the shot. Just finding them brought back a lot of memories, and how they ushered in the era of high tech shotgun ammo.

I no longer have the original box that they came in and was wondering if anyone remembers the velocity specs for this old ammo. I seem to recall that Winchester advertised 1500fps. I looked at the specs for the current production BRI lugs but those specs seem awfully slow for a 1OZ. slug. Does anyone here still use this slug for deer hunting?

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September 15, 2013, 03:47 PM
Vo 1400fps.

September 15, 2013, 04:30 PM
Pablo I know that the current Super X BRI slug is 1400fps. However I'm pretty sure that the older Hi Impact version was faster, IIRC I believe they were around 1500fps.

September 15, 2013, 09:07 PM
BRI were the first sabots I used in about 1988 IIRC (

September 16, 2013, 05:36 AM
The BRI type sabots date back to late 60s or early 70s. I had couple boxes of made for Smith & Wesson BRI sabots from early 70s. They also made door breeching cylindrical law enforcement slug that came in blue-boxed 5 packs.

September 16, 2013, 09:42 AM
No help on the velocity, as I recall it was slower after Winchester bought out BRI and started loading them under their name with "BRI" also on the box. A rather long report on BRI slugs was in the 1966 Gun Digest. Tested in multiple doubles, over unders, pumps and semis. All smoothbores. They made the same slug in lead for humters and zinc for Police use. I believe the zinc version was 260 grains vs 1 oz for the lead. Originally the design was to be an improved range and accuracy slug for SMOOTHBORES.

Winchester may have had to lower the velocity either because of some streagth property of the early rifled barrels or more likely to obtain accuracy. Sabots were new in this application (rifled shotguns) in the late 80's and working out a material that can take the stress is tough. Look at all the problems Ballistic Products has had on their two plus iterations of sabots for handloaders. What worked in the original design, made for use in smoothbores may have been to soft or low strength in rifled bores and less pressure and velocity was the solution.

September 16, 2013, 05:31 PM
Artee I think you are probably right about them slowing it down due to better accuracy. I don't think that the barrels were an issue. I was thinking real hard aout buying some under the Super X guise until I seen that the 2 3/4" ammo is going for right around $12 a box. For that price I could buy something along the lines of the Hornady SST and possibly get better performance. The price is a little high IMHO for old tech sabot ammo. So the rifled barrel will sit in the corner until sabot ammo becomes more affordable.

September 16, 2013, 07:59 PM
I finally got to the few BRI style sabots I still have.
None of the boxes I have has a velocity written.

My original BRI sabots were red plastic and had no depression to make it a "hollow point".
I bought these in Nov of 91 from a long ago closed Sol Neft Sports. The price of $7.80 and a markdown price of $6.69 were both crossed off and the box I have has $5.49 written on the price tag. I know I used BRI sabots in 88 as i shot a deer with the Ithaca.

I'm not sure of the order but the Winchester 2 3/4" still had BRI on the front of the box. It was a standard velocity and had a circular depression as it's "hollow point"
The 3" Winchesters have BRI on the front of the box, are "standard velocity" on the box and a circular depression as the hollow point. I had written "Oct 92" on the box as to when they were purchased.

The box of "hi impact" references BRI on the rear, has high velocity on the front and a 5 sided depression as it's hollow point.

The 2 3/4" sabots grouped much better than the 3"

When our county became "shotgun only" I believe I shot one buck with a 20 ga. Savage model 30 in 1983 and later ? bought the 12 ga Ithaca Deerslayer. (

October 2, 2013, 09:35 AM
27Hand those are some nice pictures and history information in both your posts.
Your boxes don't show any dates or maybe copyrights with dates, do they?

As an aside on the performance of this slug I offer the following memory. Towards the end of November about 10 years ago I was browsing in a semi local gun store. That's deer season in Indiana and Michigan. Several hunters were in BSing with the owner. The general topic was the LACK of performance with the Winchester/BRI slugs. One just that morning, and others over that season and recent seasons thought that the slug had little stopping power and they were losing deer or on long tracking jobs with this slug. I remember that in this time period the most common sabot slug was still the Win/BRI through out this area. Also, they seemed to be unimpressed with the then new/current version more so than ones from 5 years or so earlier. They were looking for better sabot loads, or going back to standard foster slugs. They also felt that buying their rifled barrels had been a waste and would rather just use their muzzleloaders (inlines and sabot/pistol bullets prevailed).

October 3, 2013, 12:39 AM
thanks. I will take a closer look at the inside flaps of the boxes I have in the next few days to see if there is any additional info. Perhaps I'll take a few more pics.
I honestly don't remember why I eventually changed from Win/BRI to Rem copper solids. A buddy may have given me a box or I bought a box and liked how the solids grouped.
I'm not really sure why I just didn't shoot them up as I'm really not a collector, well maybe just with the box of Sears .22LR i still have. :).

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