Why Incredibly Fast Shells

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Why Incredibly Fast Shells

Postby jpari » Fri Feb 28, 2014 8:08 am

Just out of curiosity what is the real benefit of shooting steel shells moving at say 1800 FPS? I understand that speed kills when steel shot is concerned but at what point do we reach the point of diminishing returns. This is a question that has been puzzling me for some time. Being a duck hunter as well as an avid upland hunter with the possible future of steel only moving to the uplands it is a question that I need to hear some input on. I also can understand that if trying to load the fastest shell possible just because you can is your hobby then all the power to you and have at it, but, if a bird is killed cleanly at 1450 FPS at the range that you can reliably hit a bird what is the benefit of shooting faster loads and risking your shoulder and gun? Also, I have read on this board that the super fast loads reach out to sometimes 60 yds. but I can't help but to question how many of us can reliably hit a fast crossing target reliably at 60 yds. I guess that the key word here is reliably.
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Re: Why Incredibly Fast Shells

Postby 3200 man » Fri Feb 28, 2014 8:19 am

From what I've seen and heard on this forum anything over 1500 fps will give you 2 to 3 yds more in killing distance .

and the forward allowance of leade is 5 to 8 inches shorter ! If this helps you , by all means shoot 'em !

But I think , more pellets in the air of the proper size gives you better odds of hitting what you're shooting at ? :yes:
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Re: Why Incredibly Fast Shells

Postby mudpack » Fri Feb 28, 2014 8:42 am

jpari wrote:Just out of curiosity what is the real benefit of shooting steel shells moving at say 1800 FPS? I understand that speed kills when steel shot is concerned but at what point do we reach the point of diminishing returns.

In my opinion, that point is about 1400fps MV. Beyond that speed, you have velocity that is of no additional benefit...and most likely a loss of payload which is certainly of no benefit.
Max range of a shotgun is that point at which pattern density fails to put the required number of pellets in the bird. Max range has nothing to do with the speed of individual pellets. If at least one pellet doesn't find its way into a vital organ of a bird, it doesn't matter if said pellets are traveling at the speed of light; the bird flies away.

Shot made of any material requires a certain minimum velocity (which varies according to material and shot size) in order to kill effectively. In that respect, killing requires speed (velocity). That said, more speed does not mean more killing. If the "more speed" also requires less payload, then it could very well mean less killing.

"Speed kills" is a meaningless phrase thrown about by the guys who can't factually tell you why faster is better. It has nothing to do with shotgun effectiveness.

3200 man is on the right track with his last statement. It might be slightly more accurate to say "more pellets in the pattern, of the proper size, gives you better odds of hitting a vital organ when you do hit what you're shooting at"

That's my opinion. You will get others.
Last edited by mudpack on Fri Feb 28, 2014 8:51 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Why Incredibly Fast Shells

Postby lostknife4 » Fri Feb 28, 2014 8:50 am

on that Mud & 3200
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Re: Why Incredibly Fast Shells

Postby Jon Bergren » Fri Feb 28, 2014 9:27 am

jpari wrote:Just out of curiosity what is the real benefit of shooting steel shells moving at say 1800 FPS? I understand that speed kills when steel shot is concerned but at what point do we reach the point of diminishing returns. This is a question that has been puzzling me for some time. Being a duck hunter as well as an avid upland hunter with the possible future of steel only moving to the uplands it is a question that I need to hear some input on. I also can understand that if trying to load the fastest shell possible just because you can is your hobby then all the power to you and have at it, but, if a bird is killed cleanly at 1450 FPS at the range that you can reliably hit a bird what is the benefit of shooting faster loads and risking your shoulder and gun? Also, I have read on this board that the super fast loads reach out to sometimes 60 yds. but I can't help but to question how many of us can reliably hit a fast crossing target reliably at 60 yds. I guess that the key word here is reliably.


Those that bad mouth fast steel can't reload it, can't get good patterns and can't get the velocities. However 1500 fps loads do kill. Going to the fast stuff back in 1998 with first Alliant STEEL powder available my kill ratio went up on ducks, geese and pheasants. Also alot of Italian guns will not pattern loads over 1550 fps. The guns, barrels and chokes are available to handle the fast loads and I utilize them. One of the most suprising loads was 7/8 oz of B's at 1765 fps, my Mossy 935 shoots this load at 1865 fps and have killed many geese with it even out to 60 yds with a Terror choke. I get 100% patterns with the Rem 1100 and Hasting barrels and chokes. The Mossy 935 will do 96%. The other advantage of fast loads is they cost less. I'm still shooting the 7/8 oz loads for $5 a box. I still shoot 1 oz of 3's at 1550 fps in an AA hull. It will kill to 50.4 yds and great over decoys. It is still one of my favorite loads. Ned S
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Re: Why Incredibly Fast Shells

Postby Sagebrush » Fri Feb 28, 2014 10:19 am

I don't care what the velocity is that you are shooting..............

I do much better with a 1oz or 1 1/8oz payload of steel headed towards a bird,
at ALL the different yardages that I encounter through out the day.

I may miss a few with the choke that I have selected but that goes with the flip of the coin.
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Re: Why Incredibly Fast Shells

Postby Frank Lopez » Fri Feb 28, 2014 10:25 am

I agree with 3200, mudpack and Lostknife. Patterns, or more correctly pattern density, is the main factor. Velocity, beyond some point (say, 1400 - 1450fps) really offers no benefit. And in truth, might be of some detriment. ignoring Mudpack's point of reduced payload for a moment, higher velocity makes controlling the pattern more difficult. Doesn't mean it can't be done, just means it's more difficult and often carries a greater expense. So, to answer your question, "Why?", I'd say you did a pretty good job of answering it yourself.

jpari wrote:I also can understand that if trying to load the fastest shell possible just because you can is your hobby then all the power to you and have at it, but, if a bird is killed cleanly at 1450 FPS at the range that you can reliably hit a bird what is the benefit of shooting faster loads and risking your shoulder and gun?


One last note, a 1 1/4oz load of #2 steel started at 1400fps will kill mallard sized ducks all day long at 60 yards if you can a) keep the pattern together (something that is easily possible with even factory chokes) and b)put the pattern on the bird.

I've still never heard a viable explanation as to why or how fast loads "kill better".

Frank
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Re: Why Incredibly Fast Shells

Postby Jon Bergren » Fri Feb 28, 2014 11:57 am

Frank Lopez wrote:I agree with 3200, mudpack and Lostknife. Patterns, or more correctly pattern density, is the main factor. Velocity, beyond some point (say, 1400 - 1450fps) really offers no benefit. And in truth, might be of some detriment. ignoring Mudpack's point of reduced payload for a moment, higher velocity makes controlling the pattern more difficult. Doesn't mean it can't be done, just means it's more difficult and often carries a greater expense. So, to answer your question, "Why?", I'd say you did a pretty good job of answering it yourself.

jpari wrote:I also can understand that if trying to load the fastest shell possible just because you can is your hobby then all the power to you and have at it, but, if a bird is killed cleanly at 1450 FPS at the range that you can reliably hit a bird what is the benefit of shooting faster loads and risking your shoulder and gun?


One last note, a 1 1/4oz load of #2 steel started at 1400fps will kill mallard sized ducks all day long at 60 yards if you can a) keep the pattern together (something that is easily possible with even factory chokes) and b)put the pattern on the bird.

I've still never heard a viable explanation as to why or how fast loads "kill better".

More of Frank's subjective BS. I have never seen on a forum that states "fast loads kill better". Dead is dead. Ned S

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Re: Why Incredibly Fast Shells

Postby baltz526 » Fri Feb 28, 2014 12:03 pm

Pellet count on target and speed matters with steel shot. Like mentioned 1450fps give or take is the speed steel shot preforms best at. Or if we generalize this to 1400fps to 1600fps. Any steel shot load inside this range with the best sized pellet and pellet count for the bird hunted, works well enough. Loads outside this range can still work, very effectively by some. Stuff a 12ga 1 1/8oz to 1 1/4oz shell in your gun with between 1400 and 1600fps and you really can not go too far wrong. Ultra fast steel can work but its a gimmick load, much like Remington Hyper steel, Winchester Blind side, Federal black cloud. Clown shoes are a gimmick, But I do not wear them while hunting.
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Re: Why Incredibly Fast Shells

Postby Mugzwump » Fri Feb 28, 2014 1:47 pm

I think if you want an answer to this you could work backwards from a distance and do the math. If you want a lethal pellet at 60 yards(one that offers full penetration, or a certain KE), it must be traveling at "V2" velocity at that distance ,and as such must have been fired at "V1", original velocity, anything over that calculated original velocity is excessive and therefore not useful at all.

You can not say a 1700 fps round kills better than a 1400 fps round at a certain equal distance if that 1700 fps rounds "energy" is doing nothing but traveling out the other side of the bird and another 20 yards further. Once you have attained the penetration, any extra velocity and you're just burning gas for nothing.

I don't have any problems using 1300-1400 fps loads, and the only time I will shoot "high velocity" is in extreme wind, to help cut the lead.

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Re: Why Incredibly Fast Shells

Postby Jon Bergren » Fri Feb 28, 2014 2:36 pm

Most of my fast loads at the distance I shoot them go clear thru waterfowl both ducks and geese. That way I have no steel in them to break my teeth. That happened once before shooting fast steel and it cost me $400 trying to save it. It was a front tooth. This is another advantage of shooting fast stuff. You can say that any load will waste energy as they all kill further than we use them.
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Re: Why Incredibly Fast Shells

Postby Frank Lopez » Fri Feb 28, 2014 3:29 pm

Jon Bergren wrote:More of Frank's subjective BS.


Remember what Inigo Montoya said! :lol3: :lol3: :lol3:

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Re: Why Incredibly Fast Shells

Postby Frylock » Fri Feb 28, 2014 3:44 pm

Jon Bergren wrote:Those that bad mouth fast steel can't reload it, can't get good patterns and can't get the velocities. However 1500 fps loads do kill. Going to the fast stuff back in 1998 with first Alliant STEEL powder available my kill ratio went up on ducks, geese and pheasants. Also alot of Italian guns will not pattern loads over 1550 fps. The guns, barrels and chokes are available to handle the fast loads and I utilize them. One of the most suprising loads was 7/8 oz of B's at 1765 fps, my Mossy 935 shoots this load at 1865 fps and have killed many geese with it even out to 60 yds with a Terror choke. I get 100% patterns with the Rem 1100 and Hasting barrels and chokes. The Mossy 935 will do 96%. The other advantage of fast loads is they cost less. I'm still shooting the 7/8 oz loads for $5 a box. I still shoot 1 oz of 3's at 1550 fps in an AA hull. It will kill to 50.4 yds and great over decoys. It is still one of my favorite loads. Ned S


7/8ths oz B steel = 74 pellets
1&1/4 oz B steel = 106 pellets
96% (your data) of 74 pellets = 71 pellets.
72% (good patterning results that most could achieve) of 106 pellets = 76 pellets.

I see no advantage there. I did not use your pattern density of 100% percent because using an aftermarket barrel essentially makes you 1100 a custom gun, and as many of us in fact do use Italian guns (which you claim will not pattern loads over 1550fps) I'd go as far as to say that the fast loads which the OP asked about are in fact a disadvantage except to a limited few.


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Why Incredibly Fast Shells

Postby Frylock » Fri Feb 28, 2014 3:54 pm

mudpack wrote:more pellets in the pattern, of the proper size, gives you better odds of hitting a vital organ when you do hit what you're shooting at

Seems so obvious yet some find it so hard to understand.



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Re: Why Incredibly Fast Shells

Postby UmatillaJeff » Fri Feb 28, 2014 4:31 pm

What many find very hard to understand is that ballistic gel and ducks are not the same thing. Hitting a bird with a pattern load of pellets that are out of energy does little or nothing but I see people on here expose on how well it works all the time.

I hunt every day of the season and I can assure you that if steel 2's killed ducks dead at 60 yards I would own a train car load of #2 steel shot.

What does kill them dead is steel T's in a 1 1.2 load in a 10ga. Now if I can kill them every time with a load that starts with 70 pellets why does it not work with steel 2's?

If steel 2's would kill ducks dead at 60 yards then why do we have Hevi shot? TSS? Bismuth?

Surely if they can kill them dead at 60 yards with steel 2's then they should kill them dead over the decoys far closer! And yet....

We have all these super shells and shot that have been designed to fix a problem that does not exist?

Speed is great but not at the expense of pattern is the answer that is accurate but it helps you very little at distance where help with lead would be the most beneficial.

Yes Virginia!

Speed does help but it will not make a wing shot out of somebody who can't shoot and it doesn't turn steel 2's into steel T's.

There is no substitute for weight of pellet.

That you can take to the bank. Jeff
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Re: Why Incredibly Fast Shells

Postby lostknife4 » Fri Feb 28, 2014 4:34 pm

I'm really surprised at how few people use TSS ...
But those of us who do , really know the truth in Jeff's closing remarks..
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Re: Why Incredibly Fast Shells

Postby lostknife4 » Fri Feb 28, 2014 4:46 pm

Frylock wrote:
mudpack wrote:more pellets in the pattern, of the proper size, gives you better odds of hitting a vital organ when you do hit what you're shooting at

Seems so obvious yet some find it so hard to understand.



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That's a very bad finger to have out of commision!!!!!!!!!

Because that is the finger used to work the cash register!

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Re: Why Incredibly Fast Shells

Postby Mugzwump » Fri Feb 28, 2014 5:29 pm

lostknife4 wrote:I'm really surprised at how few people use TSS ...
But those of us who do , really know the truth in Jeff's closing remarks..
Lost


I'd use it... but the cost is prohibitive, I couldn't use it year round.

I know you can justify the cost in different ways, but when it comes time to buy, my wallet picks the buck-a-round box every time. I'm trying out that stuff from BPI, called ITX; this year. I have a small bag of #4 shot. First thing that got me is it isn't round... shaping up to be another expensive fail.


Bottom line here, the OP mentioned in his first post...
I also can understand that if trying to load the fastest shell possible just because you can is your hobby then all the power to you and have at it,


It's all a hobby...

Any hunter worth his shot in salt will take a good look at all the new things coming out, fast and heavy loads included, and make his own choices based on his needs. Some people drive fast cars, some people shoot fast loads, and no matter which side of the fence you're on there will be someone out there telling you his way is better. Everyone has an opinion, you have to make yours and forget about all the bull. I know what works for me and you won't change my opinion on it by posting here. Honestly I believe fast loads are just another marketing scheme...trying to be "like lead"... just like funny shaped shot and inverted flight wads. There wasn't a need for hi-speed steel other than people complaining it just wasn't lead and you could nuclear power that crap and it still won't be lead.

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Re: Why Incredibly Fast Shells

Postby Frylock » Fri Feb 28, 2014 5:35 pm

lostknife4 wrote:
Frylock wrote:
mudpack wrote:more pellets in the pattern, of the proper size, gives you better odds of hitting a vital organ when you do hit what you're shooting at

Seems so obvious yet some find it so hard to understand.



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That's a very bad finger to have out of commision!!!!!!!!!

Because that is the finger used to work the cash register!

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Re: Why Incredibly Fast Shells

Postby Theduckguru » Fri Feb 28, 2014 6:05 pm

jpari wrote:Just out of curiosity what is the real benefit of shooting steel shells moving at say 1800 FPS? I understand that speed kills when steel shot is concerned but at what point do we reach the point of diminishing returns. This is a question that has been puzzling me for some time. Being a duck hunter as well as an avid upland hunter with the possible future of steel only moving to the uplands it is a question that I need to hear some input on. I also can understand that if trying to load the fastest shell possible just because you can is your hobby then all the power to you and have at it, but, if a bird is killed cleanly at 1450 FPS at the range that you can reliably hit a bird what is the benefit of shooting faster loads and risking your shoulder and gun? Also, I have read on this board that the super fast loads reach out to sometimes 60 yds. but I can't help but to question how many of us can reliably hit a fast crossing target reliably at 60 yds. I guess that the key word here is reliably.


This is a quote that appeared in Shotgun Life, a web magazine, from Tom Roster. Roster has done more testing of steel lethality than anyone on the planet.

"My decades of lethality testing of lead and nontoxic shotshell loads for taking waterfowl and upland game birds have revealed the science-based reality that with lead and nontoxic tungsten-composite pellet hunting loads possessing lead shot equivalent pellet densities, all you need for effective (spelled: lethal) velocity is something near 1250 fps ± 50 fps. For steel loads, all that is needed is something near 1350 fps ± 50 fps. Launch velocities in excess of these benchmarks have not proven to increase lethality, but do help some shooters with their leads and thus hitting success."

Personally, I like loads in the 1350-1390 fps range and find they perform very well at all ranges. Really fast steel loads are snake oil for those seeking to blame the ammo for their shooting deficiencies.
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Re: Why Incredibly Fast Shells

Postby culot » Fri Feb 28, 2014 6:07 pm

jpari wrote:Just out of curiosity what is the real benefit of shooting steel shells moving at say 1800 FPS? I understand that speed kills when steel shot is concerned but at what point do we reach the point of diminishing returns. This is a question that has been puzzling me for some time. Being a duck hunter as well as an avid upland hunter with the possible future of steel only moving to the uplands it is a question that I need to hear some input on. I also can understand that if trying to load the fastest shell possible just because you can is your hobby then all the power to you and have at it, but, if a bird is killed cleanly at 1450 FPS at the range that you can reliably hit a bird what is the benefit of shooting faster loads and risking your shoulder and gun? Also, I have read on this board that the super fast loads reach out to sometimes 60 yds. but I can't help but to question how many of us can reliably hit a fast crossing target reliably at 60 yds. I guess that the key word here is reliably.


Take em to the sporting clay range and present a 60 yard crossing target, and let the betting begin.

Game or clay , if you put enough pellets with enough energy on target @ a given distanse you will score ...

/Peter
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Re: Why Incredibly Fast Shells

Postby Beretta06 » Fri Feb 28, 2014 6:37 pm

So here's my reason. I used to reload way back when Mec was producing components. At some point my life style changed or I got lazy and started shooting factory. In patterning factory ammo I found 3.5" fed premium 2s at 1500 fps to do the job I needed it to do. In any given day here in CA everything from greenwing teal to mallards is very probable.

So when I decided that I'd had enough of 3.5" shells and that was after a partner of mine handed me a box of 3" shells and said shoot these and see of your gun Jams your gun. We both shoot A-400s. They didn't jam my gun. But while shooting those shells I realized just how bad my flinch was, the difference in muzzle jump was minimal. Out to 40 yards I was shooting lights out. Cripples outside of that.

So I wanted to recreate that 3.5" pattern with a 3" round to test penitration I shot phone books at 40 and 45 yards. First with 3.5" 2s at 1500 fps and the 1 once of 4s at 1775 fps and 470gr of #3s at 1730 fps. I chose these because the pellet count was similar to 3.5" 1 1/2 #s

The 1oz #4s were off on penitration by quite a bit, but patterns very nice out of my Italian made gun then I shot the 1 1/16 oz 3s very similar penitration. Which is achieved with the extra velocity and what I didn't know at the time. But was told by the company that makes components.A smaller pellet penatrates Easyer because of less surface area of the pellet.

So I know shoot 1 1/16 oz of #3 s at 1730fps and enjoy better succes and am not tempted to go out of that 45 to 50 range because I shoot so much better without the muzzle jump and flinch.

I did take 2 snow geese with them during the 5 day late seaon here in Cali. I wrench the choke down to steel full. They came in as a flock at 40 yard the 1st was stone dead the 2nd took much of the pattern to the wing it was broken in multiple places. Only shots I had besides a pair of specs. But the saftey was on and I blew it.


You can listen to whatever you want. Think what you want. But seriously not rule anything out till you personally try and test it. I have several A400s avalible to me through the guys who lease from us and several of them pattern next to identical but 2 of them are fairly different than the other 4 but similar to ne another.

The rsi wads that several people seem to bitch about come out of the A400s clean not scorched burned or tore up in anyway.

60 yard crossing targets are difficult for anyone. it's not real easy to hold a pattern of any steel together that far. It's doable but I Dout you would have a decent decoy to mid pattern.


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Re: Why Incredibly Fast Shells

Postby Theduckguru » Fri Feb 28, 2014 6:51 pm

lostknife4 wrote:I'm really surprised at how few people use TSS ...
But those of us who do , really know the truth in Jeff's closing remarks..
Lost


$8 a box vs $60 a box might explain it.
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Re: Why Incredibly Fast Shells

Postby Rob MacK » Fri Feb 28, 2014 7:00 pm

One last note, a 1 1/4oz load of #2 steel started at 1400fps will kill mallard sized ducks all day long at 60 yards if you can a) keep the pattern together (something that is easily possible with even factory chokes) and b)put the pattern on the bird.

I've still never heard a viable explanation as to why or how fast loads "kill better".

Frank[/quote]

Frank,

What load of steel 2s did you get to hold to 60 yds? Choke gun combo?

Rob
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Re: Why Incredibly Fast Shells

Postby Beretta06 » Fri Feb 28, 2014 7:01 pm

Theduckguru wrote:
lostknife4 wrote:I'm really surprised at how few people use TSS ...
But those of us who do , really know the truth in Jeff's closing remarks..
Lost


$8 a box vs $60 a box might explain it.


Yes I forgot that part! I would go broke TSS? And gas our place is 4hr from my home that would be $120 in gas and $70 $80 in a weekend' I'll pass and set out a good spread and keep up on my calling and get them in to the decoys for $8 a box! There was a guy bragging about how good his flocked decoys were. In the same breath bragged about shooting his ducks at 70yd. How well do those overpriced decoys work if your taking ducks at 70yd?

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