Federal Black cloud loads

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Federal Black cloud loads

Postby xmudslinger » Thu Oct 24, 2013 3:14 pm

Has anyone had any issues with these shells not ejecting and not chambering properly. I was given some of these shells and had issues with them in 2 different guns. Was wondering if the rounds i had were defective or if other hunters had issues with them?
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Re: Federal Black cloud loads

Postby John Duck » Mon Oct 28, 2013 6:31 pm

These shells are very popular and I have not heard any complaints more than usual about them not working in the gun properly. I have never had not even one problem in my Super BE II.
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Re: Federal Black cloud loads

Postby greenbean » Sat Nov 02, 2013 7:27 pm

I've been using blackcloud since they came out and have had no issues., I run them through SX2, my dad runs them through sbe2 and my partner runs them through a versa max. We haven't had any issues with the shells.
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Re: Federal Black cloud loads

Postby ptrivero » Tue Nov 05, 2013 3:28 pm

had the same prob. 3 dif. guns
after i used up that case
the next case dif. lot # no prob.
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Re: Federal Black cloud loads

Postby TimeMachine » Wed Nov 06, 2013 2:31 pm

I reload their empty hulls. 3" fiberbase. Gunbroker for about $45 per 1000
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Re: Federal Black cloud loads

Postby John Duck » Sat Nov 09, 2013 11:59 pm

For the money, one of the very best shells out there today.
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Re: Federal Black cloud loads

Postby dog walker » Sun Nov 10, 2013 3:08 pm

John Duck wrote:For the money, one of the very best shells out there today.


:lol: :lol: :lol:
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Re: Federal Black cloud loads

Postby MK10 » Sun Nov 10, 2013 3:14 pm

John Duck wrote:For the money, one of the very best shells out there today.


I certainly believe the traditional BC loads (i.e. comprised of round steel and flitestopper steel) are quite capable of taking ducks and geese at typical/common shooting distances (i.e. under 45 yards) when an appropriate pellet size has been chosen. Beyond this distance, I'm not confident in the loads ability to produce "consistent" clean kills.

This is perhaps where conventional loads such as Federal's Speed-Shok provide a broader coverage of shooting ranges and at a reduced price to the BC load.
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Re: Federal Black cloud loads

Postby John Duck » Sun Nov 10, 2013 5:26 pm

MK10 wrote:
John Duck wrote:For the money, one of the very best shells out there today.


I certainly believe the traditional BC loads (i.e. comprised of round steel and flitestopper steel) are quite capable of taking ducks and geese at typical/common shooting distances (i.e. under 45 yards) when an appropriate pellet size has been chosen. Beyond this distance, I'm not confident in the loads ability to produce "consistent" clean kills.

This is perhaps where conventional loads such as Federal's Speed-Shok provide a broader coverage of shooting ranges and at a reduced price to the BC load.

I'm certainly not convinced that conventional loads provide consistent kills beyond 45 yards, in fact, have never seen that at all.
If the Speed-Shok is cheaper, then so be it. I use the Estate 1 3/8 load to good effect with standard pellets and probably cheaper than Speed -Shok.
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Re: Federal Black cloud loads

Postby mudpack » Sun Nov 10, 2013 5:35 pm

BC makes a fine load out to medium ranges; not any better than conventional steel, but no certainly no worse. However, when you start applying steel to long-range shooting, round shot is better than square or belted steel. When we take all the characteristics into account, Black Cloud commands a premium price for no advantages over conventional steel.
That's my opinion. I've never bought a box of BC, and never will.
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Re: Federal Black cloud loads

Postby BBK » Sun Nov 10, 2013 5:35 pm

Estates ARE speed shok, and speed-shok is cheaper. Same powder, same shot, same wads, same hull.. Only difference is one is ground smooth and the other is ribbed. They are even loaded on the same machines. Of course the 1 3/8 is estate only in the 3" hull, federal didnt want it in all of their lines due to low demand. But its still the same quality as the speed-shok since are the same components.

Weigh your 1 3/8 estates, they are just shy of 1 3/8 and use the same wad as the 1 1/4 loading.
Why do I shoot 3.5" for geese? Because they don't make a 4" yet!
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Re: Federal Black cloud loads

Postby John Duck » Sun Nov 10, 2013 7:53 pm

mudpack wrote:BC makes a fine load out to medium ranges; not any better than conventional steel, but no certainly no worse. However, when you start applying steel to long-range shooting, round shot is better than square or belted steel. When we take all the characteristics into account, Black Cloud commands a premium price for no advantages over conventional steel.
That's my opinion. I've never bought a box of BC, and never will.

One mans opinion compared to 20,000
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Re: Federal Black cloud loads

Postby MK10 » Sun Nov 10, 2013 7:57 pm

John Duck wrote:
MK10 wrote:
John Duck wrote:For the money, one of the very best shells out there today.


I certainly believe the traditional BC loads (i.e. comprised of round steel and flitestopper steel) are quite capable of taking ducks and geese at typical/common shooting distances (i.e. under 45 yards) when an appropriate pellet size has been chosen. Beyond this distance, I'm not confident in the loads ability to produce "consistent" clean kills.

This is perhaps where conventional loads such as Federal's Speed-Shok provide a broader coverage of shooting ranges and at a reduced price to the BC load.

I'm certainly not convinced that conventional loads provide consistent kills beyond 45 yards, in fact, have never seen that at all.
If the Speed-Shok is cheaper, then so be it. I use the Estate 1 3/8 load to good effect with standard pellets and probably cheaper than Speed -Shok.


I have no experience with Estate ammunition, so I can only assume that BBK's assessment is correct. Having said that, I've shot both Black Cloud and Speed-Shok and really stand firmly behind my earlier opinion. At moderate ranges, BC is an effective killer. But then again, there are so many conventional loads that are in the same boat. However, when it comes to hunting birds at ranges between 20 yards through to 60 yards, Speed-Shok would be my preferred option between these two Federal loads…………and yes, I've seen consistent clean kills, even at extended ranges.
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Re: Federal Black cloud loads

Postby John Duck » Sun Nov 10, 2013 10:55 pm

MK10, You know, really, whatever! I told some hunters I know about Black Cloud that had shooting problems at least 5 years ago now and they switched over and have never went back. I have hit birds with it out to 60 yards. How could it be any different than round shot since half the load IS round shot????
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Re: Federal Black cloud loads

Postby John Duck » Sun Nov 10, 2013 10:58 pm

I meant different as to long range! I think at long range when shot slows down (especially fast shot) Black Cloud would show it's true stuff (creating wound cavities larger than round shot) as penetration of regular round shot falls off.
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Re: Federal Black cloud loads

Postby BBK » Sun Nov 10, 2013 11:06 pm

The flightstopper in black cloud turns it into a short range load. At 60 yards your flightstopper pellets are way wide of your pattern and you are killing ducks with the plain old round steel left in the center. Federal caught on to this and introduced a new fancy black cloud close range (100% flightstopper). Its essentially a spreader load good for out to 30 yards. The flightstopper shot does not fly true by any means. Any birds taken at 60 yards were killed with the plain round steel or you got them with a magical flightstopper pellet from the far edge of your pattern.
Why do I shoot 3.5" for geese? Because they don't make a 4" yet!
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Re: Federal Black cloud loads

Postby John Duck » Sun Nov 10, 2013 11:15 pm

BBK wrote:The flightstopper in black cloud turns it into a short range load. At 60 yards your flightstopper pellets are way wide of your pattern and you are killing ducks with the plain old round steel left in the center. Federal caught on to this and introduced a new fancy black cloud close range (100% flightstopper). Its essentially a spreader load good for out to 30 yards. The flightstopper shot does not fly true by any means. Any birds taken at 60 yards were killed with the plain round steel or you got them with a magical flightstopper pellet from the far edge of your pattern.


But, I contend that most ducks are taken with the outside of the pattern and no shot flies true no matter what it is. That is the new (shell) game to increase the diameter of the shot cone or 30 inch circle, because it is known that most ducks are not killed by the center of the pattern. I'm not sure the intent of the closer range wad is because the load was not effective at long range.
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Re: Federal Black cloud loads

Postby BBK » Sun Nov 10, 2013 11:26 pm

Most people kill with the edges because most people are not skilled wing shooters. Its that simple. Has nothing to do with the load. Most waterfowlers can't shoot worth a darn. When, or if, you ever see a duck hit with the center of the pattern you will know it. Feathers fly out both ends of the bird, head tucks under the body, wings fold in, and the duck falls without twitching.

But you have to remember, the center of a pattern is less than a foot across. That is a VERY small area to put dead center on a moving target. I can't do it with any sort of accuracy, no way no how. I'm not that good. But I have done it a few times.

I do agree that most are hit with the outer edge of the pattern, but not the true outer fringe. I think most are hit with probably the outer 1/3 of the pattern (12" worth of pattern) That gives enough density to hit vitals and kill the bird. Any farther out than that and it will most likely be a crippled bird. That is why a lot of us spend time and money to pattern loads and chokes. We want to get that pattern to tighten up so when the birds are hit with the edge there is still enough shot there to make an ethical kill.

From what I understand the black cloud close range was developed for guys who were already shooting the regular black cloud down in the timber holes of Louisiana and Arkansas. The regular black cloud was like shooting a rifle at the close up ranges, so they needed something a little wider. Once federal understood how the flightstopper was flying, they turned it into a close range spreader load. Its nothing special, its the same wad but with 100% FS steel.

Its kind of a mix-matched pair that seems to work pretty well. The FS wad wants to keep things TIGHT by doing essentially what a patternmaster choke does. The FS steel wants to fly wild since its not aerodynamic. The pair together makes a good close range load. The pair with some regular steel added makes a great mid-range load. I wonder if they used straight up steel shot they could make an effective long range load with it? Maybe a new snow goose load?
Why do I shoot 3.5" for geese? Because they don't make a 4" yet!
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Re: Federal Black cloud loads

Postby John Duck » Mon Nov 11, 2013 12:16 am

I agree and that is what I have said all along is that hunters today are not the best shots as we all just do not get the long extended stays in the field to become good shots, not to mention the small bag limits. It is not just the poor shooting, but the inherent poor ballistics of scattegunning in general. Any improvements on moving birds would be welcome. Steel shot was the worst thing ever to happen to the shotgun in hundreds of years. I would contend that probably more birds are wounded from steel than ever died from eating lead shot. I even wonder how long shot will be around until a new technology replaces it. Don't laugh, it may be sooner then we might think.
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Re: Federal Black cloud loads

Postby mudpack » Mon Nov 11, 2013 3:40 pm

John Duck wrote: I even wonder how long shot will be around until a new technology replaces it. Don't laugh, it may be sooner then we might think.


Round shot will be the projectile of choice for shotguns long after you and I have gone to that great marsh in the sky, john.
You can believe it...
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Re: Federal Black cloud loads

Postby John Duck » Mon Nov 11, 2013 3:48 pm

mudpack wrote:
John Duck wrote: I even wonder how long shot will be around until a new technology replaces it. Don't laugh, it may be sooner then we might think.


Round shot will be the projectile of choice for shotguns long after you and I have gone to that great marsh in the sky, john.
You can believe it...


I don't believe it, if they outlawed lead, how long til they find a reason to out law any shot. Military tech had lazer and sound sources that would work on waterfowl and more systems we don't even know about. In a lot of areas, citizens and animal rights loons complain about noise. Being a traditionalist I don't want to see shot go the way of buggy whips either, but then I don't like cell-phones, and a lot of assorted modern crap either.
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Re: Federal Black cloud loads

Postby tornadochaser » Tue Nov 12, 2013 10:16 am

John Duck wrote:but then I don't like cell-phones, and a lot of assorted modern crap either.


Ironic you like blindside so much then. Seems to be the shotshell equivalent of modern crap is there was one.

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Re: Federal Black cloud loads

Postby Frank Lopez » Tue Nov 12, 2013 10:46 am

mudpack wrote:BC makes a fine load out to medium ranges; not any better than conventional steel, but no certainly no worse. However, when you start applying steel to long-range shooting, round shot is better than square or belted steel. When we take all the characteristics into account, Black Cloud commands a premium price for no advantages over conventional steel.
That's my opinion. I've never bought a box of BC, and never will.


This is an excellent description of Black cloud! :thumbsup:

And, yes, I have bought some, tested it and shot ducks with it. This post matches perfectly with my observations.

Frank
I feel slightly sorry for a man who has never patterned his gun, who has no idea how far his chosen load will retain killing penetration. But I'm extremely sorry for the ducks he shoots at beyond the killing range of his gun and load - Bob Brister
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Re: Federal Black cloud loads

Postby John Duck » Tue Nov 12, 2013 1:53 pm

tornadochaser wrote:
John Duck wrote:but then I don't like cell-phones, and a lot of assorted modern crap either.


Ironic you like blindside so much then. Seems to be the shotshell equivalent of modern crap is there was one.

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Not really, I like things that better mankind, a lot of technology like Cellphones are just making us more ignorant, read less and become more CONFORMIST....
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Re: Federal Black cloud loads

Postby John Duck » Tue Nov 12, 2013 1:54 pm

Funny, at least 20,000 hunters don't agree with Frankie! No wonder!
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