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Old August 10, 2002, 11:31 AM   #1
Jorah Lavin
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Join Date: April 4, 1999
Location: Indian Land, SC USA
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Pls Check my 1st shotgun recipe 12ga

Later today I'm going to set up my new Mec 600 Jr.

I went to a store last week and got the following components, and will be putting them (unless I get a red flag from you folks) into Remington black hull "game load" (cheap) shells.

Here is what I have:[list=1][*]Western "WT12" 1+1/8 wads[*]Remington STS 209 Premier primers[*]Universal Clays (listing I can find shows a range of 21.5 to 23.0 gr)[*]Lawrence Brand 7.5 "high antimony" shot[*]MEC bushing 29 (22.4 gr)[*]MEC bushing 30 (23.3 gr)[*]MEC bushing 31 (24.1 gr)[*]MEC bushing 32 (25.0 gr) [/list=1]

I figure that the #29 bushing should put me right in the right range for the Universal Clays.

Am I good to go? Should I load 20 shells and try 'em out, before making a bunch (as I do with new handgun and rifle rounds) or just go to town tonight?

As always, thanks in advance for your time answering my question.

-Jorah
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Old August 10, 2002, 02:18 PM   #2
HSMITH
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Jorah, your components will work fine. You don't mention what you are doing with the loads but with 7.5 shot I am assuming you are after target loads, or dove/quail loads. Yes, I would suggest you load a few and test them out. the load you are proposing is fairly stiff for target work, you may not like that so don't load a ton of them until you are sure.

Some general points for you to consider:

1. Lower velocity will tighten up patterns a little.

2. Lower pressure will tighten up patterns a little.

3. Slower powders will lessen felt recoil for a given velocity just a little.

The above will help you to tailor the loads to what you are doing with the equipment you have. The hulls you have are good hulls. They will take many loadings before the crimp gets loose. Match your loads to a factory shell in all dimensions. Crimp depth and tighness is crucial to consistent performance of your reloads.

I would suggest you look at the Hodgdon Clays powder, you will use less and it is cleaner burning. I would also suggest you load one ounce in the 12 for targets, this will also bring costs down and the target will never know the difference.
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Old August 10, 2002, 02:35 PM   #3
Jorah Lavin
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Join Date: April 4, 1999
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Correct, target shooting

Thanks for your comments. Given the current components, what size charge would you suggest? I'd actually like to go with a slower charge, and will pick up other bushings if I know what would be good to try.

I got a lot of the Hodgdon Universal Clays (it was a lot cheaper per pound) so I'll be using it for a while... once I run out of my current batch of W231 I'll probably use the Universal in my .45 acp and .38 spl loads in addition to the 12ga until I use it up. By then, I should have a better idea of what characteristics I'm looking for for the 12ga, and get the proper components for that load.

-J.
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Old August 10, 2002, 03:54 PM   #4
HSMITH
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Jorah, instead of buying all sorts of charge bars and bushings I would recommend you buy one of the "universal" charge bars. I am talking about the adjustable one. The hassle of weighing out several loads and then changing the bushing alone makes the adjustable bar a bargain, and you only have to dial in the exact load you want. It eliminates the need for different bars and bushings. It runs about $25, which you hit rather quickly with charge bars at $8-10 each and bushings at $1-2 each.

The load you have picked out is basically a handicap trap type load. Stout, but will cover anything you ever run into in clay targets. You can drop the charge weight by about 10%, but don't go any lower as performance will really suffer. A gas auto is not going to like you going any lower than that either.

Figure your powder cost on a per shell or per case of shells basis, you will find that the Clays is cheaper as you can use 17 grains or so rather than 22 grains or so. Using roughly 20% less powder to get the same velocity offsets the 10% or so difference I have seen in the two powders.

The universal works really well in 20 and 28ga, as well as the pistols. In 12 ga it is more suited to heavy target and field loads. I have burned quite a bit of it in the 12, and it works really well when you need a heavier load.

Use what you have for now, get comfortable and then start terrorizing the patterning board with all the new recipes you find that look promising. It is very satisfying to do.
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Old August 11, 2002, 07:00 PM   #5
JackM
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Be sure to weigh your charges with a good powder scale. The weight can vary by two bushings from what the charts say. You'll most likely be light, but don't bet on it. What you throw depends on the powder lot, machine vibration and likely a few other things.

I played with the adjustable bars for a while, and went back to the fixed bars & bushings. They're more consistant, since you're using a round hole instead of a retangular one.

Bye
Jack
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Old August 13, 2002, 06:07 PM   #6
Jorah Lavin
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Join Date: April 4, 1999
Location: Indian Land, SC USA
Posts: 593
They work (ouch)

I set up the Jr. Sunday night and loaded 25 shells. I finally got to the range on the way home tonight and shot them all. I hit a few clays, but I missed more than usual. I also hurt my shoulder! These are a lot more "kicky" than the 7/8 oz and 1 oz rounds I've been shooting, and it is clear that I need to get some cardboard and see where these are shooting relative to the point of aim. I hit several clays when I was aiming low, so I suspect that the rounds are hitting higher than I'm used to.

As always with reloads, it is fun to shoot what you make, and I'm going to load up 75 more rounds today and go back to the range tomorrow.

I realized as I loaded the first 25 rounds on Sunday that the only caliber I shoot that I don't reload for is .22 LR, which means that ammo purchases will be limited to a few .410s for my bride, and an occasional box of self defence stuff for the .45 acp.

Thanks to everyone for your help and advice. I'm going to start shopping for a 7/8 oz charge bar for the Jr., and put the butt pad back on the gun until then!

-Jorah
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