Friday, October 23, 2015

I see a pattern forming...

So, I decided to pattern some buckshot from my gauge yesterday. Keep this test in mind the next time you hear someone rambling on about how you don't have to aim a shotgun because it spreads shot all over the place.

All these targets were shot at 30 feet, about the longest distance you could expect in an indoor residential setting, using a Remington 870 with the factory 20" cylinder-bore barrel.

First up is Remington's Law Enforcement Reduced Recoil 9-pellet 00 buckshot, part number RR12-00BK. It's got the widest pattern at almost 7" of spread. Note, however that even this most scattered patter would keep them all on a pie plate shooting from the back hallway at Roseholme Cottage to the front door. You most certainly can miss with a shotgun, and you do need to aim them.

Plain ol' Winchester Super X unplated 9-pellet 00 buck, part number XB1200. Thumped harder than the Remington but patterned about the same.

Winchester's Ranger LE Low Recoil 8-pellet buckshot, RA120085, was tighter, with a pattern under six inches at ten yards.

Sellier & Bellot's 12-pellet 00B surprised me. I need to shoot more of this stuff at different ranges. There are a couple fliers outside of an extremely tight pattern; I want to see if this was a fluke and, if not, what it would open up to at fifteen and twenty-five yards.

Federal's 8-pellet FliteControl 00B (LE133 00) borders on voodoo. Bear in mind that with this stuff you are essentially firing a single giant Glaser Safety Slug at indoor ranges. You have to aim the shotgun the same way and with the same care you'd use with a carbine or pistol, because no lucky fliers are going to turn a miss into a marginal hit. (But whatever gets hit with that pattern is going to wish it hadn't been.)