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Steel in M-12?

Discussion in 'Shotguns' started by Clipper, Sep 10, 2008.

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  1. Clipper

    Clipper Member

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    I have a 12ga Winchester M-12 with mod. choke, built in 1952. I have heard that there are some steel shot loads that have thick enough shot cup walls to be safe to shoot in it. Anybody know which loads these might be?
     
  2. chas08

    chas08 Member

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    Clipper,
    I was told by a reputable gunsmith that the improvements in todays steel shot shells, particularly the shot cup, has negated much of the early dangers associated with shooting steel in older guns. He challenged me to examine every shotcup I could find and look for scuff throughs. I've been doing that for two seasons and havent found a scuffed through shotcup yet. I've examined Winchester, Federal, Kent , Remington, and a host of unknowns. I've talked to one fellow in the field who was using a Model 12 mod choke gun, he said he had used it for several years with no noticable ill effects. I have two Model 12's, a 12ga. & a 16 ga. I like to take the 16 out once or twice a year for nostalgic reasons. I may gamble and shoot some steel through it this season since the other "old gun" safe non toxic shotshells have trippled in price. The gunsmith I talked to said not to shoot it through any choke tighter than modified and to not shoot it through any of the old thin walled guns, like the Belgian Brownings. He said as for the Model 12's,"the metalurgy is there, I dont think it would cause you any problems", so I guess its up to us. :confused:
     
  3. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    The problem is not so much scoring the barrel, as it is swaging a ring in the barrel at the beginning of the choke.

    Steel shot cannot compress/deform like lead, and when the tightly compacted shot column hits the choke, something has to give.
    If the shot can't "give", the barrel will.

    Browning says the damage is mostly cosmetic.

    But if you have a vent rib attached to the spot where the ring forms, it can pop the rib post solder loose.

    rcmodel
     
  4. chas08

    chas08 Member

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    RC,
    I've struggled with this dilema for a while now. I can see that shooting it through a tight choke would produce the results you described. But do you suppose if you build enough "Give" into the shotcup, with wall thickness, that it would give the steel something to compress into with a less restrictive choke? I've been reluctant to risk it on my model 12's. Any further thoughts you have would be greatly appreciated also any from the rest of you out there. :)
     
  5. publiuss

    publiuss Member

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    I'm sure it would be fine but why risk it with a nice model 12, for that matter taking a M12 into the duck blind.
     
  6. chas08

    chas08 Member

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    Sorry for the Double post , Don't Know how that happened,
     
  7. chas08

    chas08 Member

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    You don't Understand, My Grandfather and Dad left me these guns expecting them to be used as they did. Would it be better to destroy them, using them as intended, or let them collect dust?... OR... keep them solid and functional, and and pass them on to a group of unappreciative "dumbasses" (with erxception to my youngest Daughter, I have no sons) My feelings are, if Grandpa's gun ever fails, I would rather it be in my hands, than some poor future "dumbass". The duck blind / boat is a harsh enviroment, but lack of after action care is what seperates collector items from junk :)
     
  8. Clipper

    Clipper Member

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    I'm with you, chas08. I shoot my guns, or I get rid of them. My M-12 has survived 56 years of use so far, a few more won't kill it. I'd hate to think of it hanging on a wall until it's rounded up for melting...
     
  9. Bullet Bob

    Bullet Bob Member

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    You don't have to put it in a closet, just use some of the lead-substitute loads out there these days that are safe for your barrel, and more effective than steel. Sure they cost a little more, but what are your forebearers guns worth to you?
     
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2008
  10. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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  11. 35Rem

    35Rem Member

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    There is a $10 mail in rebate available for the above ammo from the manufacturer. Go to their website to download the form.
     
  12. chas08

    chas08 Member

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    Between 30 and a 100. Depending on how many outings I limit out on. In a good year I'll average 20 -25 days afield. I have shot Kent Tungsten - Matrix and Bismuth in the 16 when it was $13 for ten rounds now that same ammo is $34 for ten rounds. I only take the 16 ga. once or twice a season. So it wouldn't need a lot of ammo but your still talking near $150 for forty rounds...That to me just seems insane.:fire:
     
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