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Specialty Ammunition

Discussion in 'Shotguns' started by Gridley, Feb 19, 2019.

  1. Gridley

    Gridley Member

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    One thing I really like about shotguns is the variety of ammunition available. Obviously slugs and shot of various sizes have their place, but what "specialty" ammunition have you fired? What did you think of it?

    Less-lethal, novelty (just for fun), "dragon's breath", breachers... what have you shot and what did you think?

    I'm interested in both positive and negative experiences, and in both practical rounds and ones you decided were impractical. If they were impractical, were they enough fun to be worth shooting anyway?
     
  2. FL-NC

    FL-NC Member

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    All shotgun rounds are "specialty", in that they are all designed for a specific purpose. I have used birdshot for dove and quail, steel magnums for ducks, #4 lead magnums for turkeys, slugs for deer, #6 in 3 gun comp, and buckshot for antipersonnel use (never actually fired any like this, only in training) and Hatten breaching rounds for locks in doors. I fired some rubber slugs we came about once, and I found them to be very inaccurate from our issued shotguns.
     
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  3. Gridley

    Gridley Member

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    What were the breaching rounds like?
     
  4. FL-NC

    FL-NC Member

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    I guess they kick about the same as a birdshot from a pistol grip shotgun. The problem was that in a shoot house, the same doorways get used over and over for this purpose (doors and/or locks get replaced after each "run"). As a result, there would always be a "blob" of lead or whatever is in those rounds accumulating on the floor in the doorway. After a while it would get slick like oil so people would sometimes slip on it going through that particular doorway. I heard a while back that a newer round is in use for this purpose to cut down on lead content in shoothouses.
     
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  5. Rudolph31

    Rudolph31 Member

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    I’ve got some 1oz, 1600fps slugs. Shooting just 3 out of an Auto-5 made my shoulder sore for a couple of days.
     
  6. dfariswheel

    dfariswheel Member

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    There's a new shotgun round on the market with a copper jacket that's designed to peel open like petals of a flower.
    I haven't heard much about Real World results but it certainly looks bad.

    Another round, largely not available to the commercial market are tire deflater rounds that are hollow tube-like shells that cut a hole out of the tire, causing it to go flat quickly.

    Other then for fun or to waste money about the only useful shotgun rounds are slugs, birdshot, and buckshot.
    The "Dragon's Breath" may damage the barrel and can start fires, the odd-ball stuff like large lead balls joined together with wire, the old flechette rounds, and other non-standard shells are pretty much ineffective and mostly quite useless.
     
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  7. Riomouse911

    Riomouse911 Member

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    I remember those being sold at crazy prices, like 30 bucks for 3, etc. Bolo, flechette, buck & ball, dragon's breath, etc.

    I never tried one, I found the shot, buck and slug loads did just about anything and everything I could ask for :).

    Stay safe!
     
  8. Odd Job

    Odd Job Moderator Staff Member

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    The only "exotic" rounds I have fired are the M9A1 "baton" rounds:

    DSCN0604.jpg

    Hardly any recoil!
     
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  9. Gridley

    Gridley Member

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    Never even heard of that one - what LE/military uses it? Does it work well?
     
  10. Double_J

    Double_J Member

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    I "heard about" some guys firing a 12 ga. flare out of an old single shot shotgun once. The story goes it made a mess of the barrel as the flare ignited inside the barrel.

    I personally would rather stick to the inexpensive dedicated flare gun for launching an emergency signal flare and a regular shotgun for birdshot/buckshot/slugs. I have no real use for the "exotic" gimmick shotgun ammo. If I need to deflate a car tire or similar type action slugs and buckshot work just fine and are MUCH cheaper.
     
  11. RMc

    RMc Member

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    There is a world of difference between junk exotic ammo and high performance shotgun ammo from smaller companies.
     
  12. Random 8

    Random 8 Member

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    My favorite is my gopher/deer repellent load. Fed HP style hull, Waa12SL type wad, 12 gr Red Dot and a wad full of airsoft "shot." Lethal on small critters to 15 yards or so, very effective on discouraging deer from pillaging my landscape plantings at longer distances, limited risk of carrying any significant distance. They lose the ability to penetrate cardboard at about 50 yards.

    Following BPI load data, I also have a very good coyote crusher load. Out of one of their proprietary books, so I won't share exact data, but it's pushing 1 1/4oz of nickle plated, buffered lead BBs at a Ridiculous velocity approaching the fastest Steel Loads from a 3" Fiocchi hull. Really rolls coyotes from a turkey choke. I've put them down hard as far as 70 yards. This is very much a boutique load, it would be prohibitively expensive to produce in a factory due to all the steps and gimmick components involved, but it puts a regular 3" 12Ga on a whole new level for the intended purpose.

    Never had much use for the "dragon's breath", etc, although they make nice party favors fired through somebody else's shotgun!

    Some of the M/LE stuff out there is really impressive. Get to play with some of it on "use up the old ammo day" the local County SWAT holds at our clubs range. Sometimes you get some "mystery rounds" the writing has worn off of. Always a crowd pleaser. Might be a reduced velocity bean bag, might be full house #4 buck.
     
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  13. Obturation

    Obturation Member

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    Ever watch taofledermaus on youtube? He shoots every type of shotgun load he can think of.
    Ive shot several varieties from bolo, flachete, buck&ball to waxers & cut shells.
    They dont do anything conventional shells cant. Its novelty, but a lot of fun anyway.
     
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  14. lemaymiami

    lemaymiami Member

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    Noted that someone mentioned shooting a 12ga flare round out of a shotgun - with predictably poor results (understatement....).

    I'm a licensed captain and working full time on the water for more than 23 years now. Almost all flare guns (and the rounds for them, in 12ga or 25mm are actually very poor performers in emergencies (when you're desperate to be seen and actually rescued...). For anyone actually needing quality flares simply go to any marine hardware store or catalog and look for SOLAS flares... about $10 per handheld and as much as $70 for each para flare... Those things actually work (and you can fire one off in a downpour...).

    Every time I note folks who believe the "cheapies" that most sporting goods stores sell are worth having - I just cringe....
     
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  15. RMc

    RMc Member

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    Gimmick components?
     
  16. Random 8

    Random 8 Member

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    BPGS, Teflon collar, Tyvek wrap and overshot, rolled crimp.
     
  17. Sody82

    Sody82 Member

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    I have loaded all sorts of random objects in shotgun shells. My favorite is Halloween candy. I recently made a pumpkin ball out of one of those Eye ball gum candies you get on Halloween from your kids candy buckets. That was rather interesting, it exploded on the tree like glass. Then there was the steel wool that was cool. Steel ball bearings are nice on a gong. I want to try some of those Russian slug things that look like torpedos.
     
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  18. RMc

    RMc Member

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    Those are hardly "gimmick components."

    In reality, such components with buffer, high antimony pellets and a roll crimped hull are high performance components often used by advance shotshell handloaders!
    Indeed, roll crimped 2.75" hulls have the same internal capacity as fold crimped 3" hulls, offering the handloader even greater options for large pellet payloads.

    Bottom line, factory shotshells do not define the true versatility of of the smoothbore.

    [QUOTE="Random 8, post: 11061951
    Following BPI load data, I also have a very good coyote crusher load. Out of one of their proprietary books, so I won't share exact data, but it's pushing 1 1/4oz of nickle plated, buffered lead BBs at a Ridiculous velocity approaching the fastest Steel Loads from a 3" Fiocchi hull. Really rolls coyotes from a turkey choke. I've put them down hard as far as 70 yards. This is very much a boutique load, it would be prohibitively expensive to produce in a factory due to all the steps and gimmick components involved, but it puts a regular 3" 12Ga on a whole new level for the intended purpose.[/QUOTE]
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2019
  19. Random 8

    Random 8 Member

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  20. RMc

    RMc Member

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    Well, Remington and Winchester still load their magnum 12gauge buckshot ammo with a plastic gas seal, fiber wad and buffer. Indeed, in the UK and Europe, many factory shotshell cartridges are still loaded with card and felt/fiber wads due to range or landowner restrictions.

    In the southeastern states, card and fiber loaded shotshells are now required in many "dove clubs" due to landowner restrictions.
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2019
  21. Speedo66

    Speedo66 Member

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    My son works in the marine industry, gave me some out of date SOLAS flares. I tried one last 4th of July, smoke probably toxic, but brightest flare ever. Tried to put it out in a bucket of water, not happening, actually started to boil the water in a 5 gal. bucket. Those things are vicious. lol
     
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  22. lemaymiami

    lemaymiami Member

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    I keep three on my skiff - for when it counts... and every one is current and just a necessary part of my safety gear - two handhelds and a parachute flare. I also keep a few of my expired handhelds in my truck as emergency road flares... You can pop one in a pouring rain -and the smoke and fire they produce will really get your attention... On two occasions I've popped one of the handhelds and tossed it spinning down the road to a position more than a hundred feet behind what needed protection (either from breakdown or accident)... They're pretty much twice the flare that any of the standard road flares that we used in police work....
     
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