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birdshot for handguns: shot size

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by thomis, Sep 30, 2012.

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  1. thomis

    thomis Member

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    I know #9 is the norm, but have any of you tried the larger sizes, more specifically, #8 or 7.5?
     
  2. cfullgraf

    cfullgraf Member

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    As patterns from handguns open up quickly, effective range is short. It is better to have more shot as opposed larger shot.

    #12 works pretty well in handguns but I rarely see it, not that I scoured the world either. I have had only one bag in 30 years.

    #9 is quite common so it gets used a lot for hand guns.
     
  3. rg1

    rg1 Member

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    I load .38/357 with #8 shot and .44 mag with 7 1/2. Works fine and pattern is good enough for snakes and such. Patterns are about one inch per yard so about a 6" pattern at 6 yards. For number 8 shot I disassembled a few #8 shotshells rather than buy a 25 lb bag.
     
  4. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    For snakes, I am convinced smaller is better.
    I use #12 when I have it, and #9 when I don't.

    A swarm of small shot puts more holes in their hide, and completely shorts out their nervous system, like instantly.

    No wiggling or twitching when a dose of small shot hits them.

    rc
     
  5. Certaindeaf

    Certaindeaf member

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    I used to load 6's in the Speer capsules out of a 4" M-29. Shot many big grouse from horseback in high grass as they flushed close-up with that rig. Never missed actually. Worked great.
     
  6. cfullgraf

    cfullgraf Member

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    Cool.

    My mustang would never put up with that. If the birds did not spook her, the shot certainly would.

    But, you can flop an umbrella around her head with no reaction.
     
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2012
  7. Certaindeaf

    Certaindeaf member

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    ^
    I hear you. This critter was death on hooves in other regards though.
     
  8. Salmoneye

    Salmoneye Member

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    As I do not make handgun shotshells for 'snakes' but for 'rodents', I use a mix of #8 and #6 shot...

    I get 105gr of shot in a .357 Mag case, and I get 150gr in a .44 Mag case...

    I do not use 'capsules'...
     
  9. oneounceload

    oneounceload member

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    BPI carries #10, 11, and 12 - they work well to 6' from a revolver
     
  10. thomis

    thomis Member

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    Salmoneye, or whoever else,
    If you're willing to share your recipe, I'd be grateful. Never loaded shotshells before.

    I have a good friend with 7.5 size shot that is willing to sell me just a couple pounds. I'm just looking to load 50 capsules for the .44, it will probably take me a lifetime to shoot 50.
     
  11. oneounceload

    oneounceload member

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    The recipe is on the CCI box that the capsules come in - very basic, load powder in shell, dip plastic cartridge in shot to fill, place the plastic cup on the plastic casing, insert and seat without a lot of crimp

    7.5 is somewhat large for a small bore
     
  12. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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  13. GP100man

    GP100man Member

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  14. thomis

    thomis Member

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    "7.5 is somewhat large for a small bore "

    oneounceload: what do you consider a small bore? .357?
     
  15. Patocazador

    Patocazador Member

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    I used #11 shot in a T/C Contender with their extended shot capsules in .44 mag. I shot several huns (Hungarian partridge) with it up to 10 yards.
     
  16. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Member

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    I use #9 for the .38 Special or #12 when I can get it.

    I use #8 for the .44 and .45 Colt because I tried a few sizes and feel #8 shot pattern best in those 2 calibers.
     
  17. oneounceload

    oneounceload member

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    Anything shooting shot smaller than a 28 guage.......... ;)
     
  18. orionengnr

    orionengnr Member

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    I have only loaded #9 shot into the Speer shot capsules, and I have loaded them into .45LC rounds as snake medicine.

    I chose that shot size after doing some reading, from people who have actually tested these loads.

    I have not had an opportunity to test these rounds, and in all honesty, I hope I don't get a chance to.

    But...I have seen a copperhead and a water moc in the last year (up close) while walking my dogs through the woods. Next time we meet, the outcome may be less favorable for Mr. No-Shoulders.

    I have a whole bunch of those shot capsules...if anyone has some #11 shot, (local to the DFW area) I'd be happy to buy a pound or so, and give that a try as well.

    Best regards, Rich
     
  19. 45crittergitter

    45crittergitter Member

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    I've used 5, 6, 7.5, 8, 9, 11, and 12. I like 9 for .40+ caliber, and the rimfires use 11 and 12. I have pretty good success with 12 in .45 ACP also. In .39/9mm I'd probably prefer 10-ish. 5, 6 & 7.5 definitely produce poor patterns in my experience. Also, I'm not normally shooting far enough to need large pellets, and many times want smaller ones to reduce perforation of shop walls, etc.
     
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