View Full Version : Rifled slug, Rifled barrel

November 15, 2006, 10:26 PM
I got my dad a shotgun with a rifled barrel. He never knew there was any difference any any of the shotgun loads or anything. I know its bad to use rifled slugs in a rifled barrel, and sabot slugs in a smooth barrel, but i never knew exactly what would happen if you did. So i can explain it better to my dad, what exactly does it do when rifled goes through rifled and sabot goes through smooth?

C Philip
November 15, 2006, 11:13 PM
If a sabot goes through a smooth barrel it won't be spinning and thus won't be stabilized in flight and will be very inaccurate. I'm not entirely sure about a rifled slugs from a rifled barrel, but I imagine the problem would be extreme lead fouling due to the rifling on the slug scraping against the rifling on the barrel.

November 15, 2006, 11:15 PM
When you shoot a Foster style rifled slug out of a rifled barrel it works just fine - for the first few shots. After that the group keeps getting bigger & bigger. The soft lead slugs strip lead on the way out the barrel and after several shots you have the rifling smoothed out with lead in the rifling grooves. Serious cleaning is need to remove the lead and have good accuracy again. This is from personal experence not just repeating someone else.

Shooting a sabot in a smooth bore will also work - but your groups will more resemble shotgun patterns since there is nothing to stabalize the slugs. I haven't tried this so I don't know just how large a group you will get at say 50 yds. This would be a costly experiment if you shoot much as the sabots rounds are selling for $10-$15 per box of 5.

My best piece of advice - get a really good recoil pad on the shotgun before sighting in the slugs

November 15, 2006, 11:22 PM
Rifled slugs shot through a rifled barrel tend to leave lead pushed into the rifling in the barrel. After two to three shots, the accuracy deminishes. The groups that you are shooting will gradually open up shot after shot. To avoid this you need to clean the barrel really well after each shot when you are sighting in.

Sabot slugs shot through a smooth bore loose flight characteristics as soon as they leave the barrel. The sabot is designed to sperate from the projectile, shortly after the round has left the barrel tip. The spin that a rifle barrel puts on the round is what helps peel the sabot away. Smooth bore guns don't spin the sabot, causing the sabot to hang on the projectile longer. This also causes the projectile to "tumble" losing flight characteristics and inconsistent accuracy.

Hope that helps.

November 15, 2006, 11:39 PM
All of the above posters have pretty much hit it right on. Rifled slugs will sometimes work in a rifled barrel, but for the most part they are swaged out of pure lead and will lead up the bore pretty quick. I have experimented a lot with sabots and rifled slugs in my rifled guns, A Rem 870 and an Ithaca Deerslayer II.. The rifled slugs in a rifled barrel give some strange results at times. And sabots in a smoothbore, generally give dismal results.