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patterning results - which ammo would you get?


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Last season, it seems like I missed quite a few birds-on-the-wing. Like any good hunter, I blame the equipment. :tooth:  

So I went out and bought a new set of Carlson Cremator Chokes for my Beretta A300 Outlander. I also got a few different types of 3" steel ammo in both BB and #2 with the thought of hunting geese with BB and ducks with #2.  The past week I headed out to the range for a few days to pattern.

If you are bored and have some time, take a look at my patterning results and tell me what you think - what ammo and choke would you go with?

#2 results: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1tkdq11rXPviiGAENA0PdJaRN3tDWfYbW?usp=sharing

BB results: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1SFHQGtRteprjvJE9w9Bkq4UsltOIO6LI?usp=sharing

Here's what I did to get these patterns.

For each ammo type, I took 6 shots  - 2 different distances with the 3 Carlson chokes (close range (CR), medium range (MR), and long range (LR)). So I stood on the 40 yard line, fired one shot each thru the CR, MR, and LR chokes. I then moved up to 25 yards and again fired one shot each through the different chokes.

The #2 ammo I tested were:

  • Federal SpeedShok, 1 1/8 ounces
  • Kent Fasteel, 1 1/4 ounces
  • Browning BXD, 1 1/4 ounces
  • Hevi-Steel, 1 1/4 ounces

The BB ammo I tested were:

  • Federal SpeedShok, 1 1/8 ounce
  • Kent Fasteel, 1 1/4 ounce
  • Browning BXD, 1 1/4 ounce

You may ask, "Why did you pick that ammo? Why didn't you test with <your favorite ammo here>?" A few reasons, not least of which I purposefully stayed away from ammo that is expensive (say, $25/box for example) because I know I am not going to want to spend a ton of money like that on ammo. Also, I made a bulk purchase with a couple other guys to help spread the cost - and one guy already had some types of ammo and didn't want more of the same, so I didn't get those. Anyway, I don't have the time, patience, or money to test more so I picked a few I thought were affordable and a brand that seems easy to get in various stores.

Edited by Rusty
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I am about to do the same, because almost every article I have read or video I have watched strongly suggests patterning your gun with the shells you will be hunting or clay shooting with.  

A good example happened with my son with a slug gun he recently bought off a guy. The shells that came with the gun were all over the place at 50yds neither he or I could get a grouping. He had another brand and they were consistent and tightly grouped.

I thought, growing old would take longer ! 

I spent most of my money on shotguns and fly rods.  The rest I just wasted.

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If you are missing alot you probably need to lead them further. I've led birds 10ft when they are hauling ass.. sometimes they dont look like they are going fast- they are..

Also keep your gun swinging after you pull the trigger. Sometimes if I feel like I was behind I'll pull the trigger and speed up the follow through to spread the pattern forward more in front of the bird.

Good practice is sporting clays.. check out Lehigh valley sporting clays.


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1 hour ago, JerseyJaysTaxidermy said:

If you are missing alot you probably need to lead them further

Wait? Are you suggesting it is the Indian and not the arrow?!?!? Does not compute :blink::)


Good practice is sporting clays.

I am a member at Telco Sportsmens Club down in the Atco area. I shoot trap and 5-stage there. 5-Stage (which is like sporting clays only from 5 stations rather than walking a course) is what I like better than trap since it simulates more realistic hunting scenarios - the clays  are shot in all directions rather than more-or-less away from you as in trap. So I do get some practice in. Just isn't the same, though, when you got a duck flying in at 40 mph in stealth mode that you didn't see up to a second before you need to shoot. Seems I have to lead the "real thing" farther than clays.

Anyway - as a side note: if anyone is interested in shooting trap or 5-stage, Telco invites the public every Sunday at 12noon for 5-Stage and every Monday at 6pm for trap. $5 for a round of 5-stage, $4 for a round trap (bring your own gun and ammo - one box per round). It's a lot of fun, and if you are a hunter, it's great practice and something to do while you wait for September/October to roll around.

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