Graybeard Outdoors banner
1 - 3 of 3 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
241 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been following the Hevi-Shot articles with a lot of interest as it seems to pattern tighter than anything else. Of particular interest is the fact that the shot is by no means perfectly round. This goes against everything I was taught about reloading shotshells. The gun writers are claiming that it patterns well because it is heavier than lead and this overcomes the fact that it's nowhere near perfectly round.

The problem with this theory is that I've seen other examples of shot that isn't perfectly round that also patterned well.

Case 1: Bismuth shot

I've been reloading this for quite a while now for Waterfowl and it patterns extremely well based upon the patterning board and actual results in the field. If you examine this stuff, you'll find it's not perfectly round either, kind of halfway between lead shot and Hevi-Shot. And, it's not as dense (heavy) as Hevi-Shot or Lead.

Case 2: Homemade Shot

I went to the Trap Club one day and there was an older gentleman there who was selling homemade shot. He had made his own shotmaker (described it to me), used scavenged range lead and was trying to sell it to make a buck or two as he needed money to supplement his pension. I examined the stuff and it was about as round as Bismuth shot. I KNEW it
wouldn't pattern worth a darn but the guy needed money and was selling it for $40/hundredweight, so I bought 200# and figured I would melt it down and cast bullets from it since the price was reasonable for the lead alone where I live.

I forgot to keep a close enough eye on my own supply of Commercial shot and one day decided to go shoot a few rounds of trap. Rats, I was out of shot. I looked at the homemade shot again as I hadn't melted it down yet, figured what the heck, it was better than nothing and made 150 shells up.

I went to the Trap Club and shot all six boxes. The clays smoked as they always had in the past and my scores were identical to my normal scores.

The two examples above have pretty well convinced me that you don't need perfectly round shot as I have been taught in the past.

Any Opinions?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,321 Posts
You have to keep in mind that soft lead shot deforms, at least to some extent while traveling down the barrel. As it exits, the deformed pellets are what causes the patterns to open up. In theory, since hevishot is already deformed (and is harder than steel) it should perform similar to lead. Steel , busmuth and tungsten meanwhile are more round but harder (than lead and less likely to deform) and theoreticaly should have tighter pattern although the inability of the shot to deform as it bounces against itself may cause erradic patterns hence the reccomendation to use a more open choke.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
381 Posts
Dakotashooter makes a good point. Bismuth patterns well compared to lead because, even though it is not perfectally round, it is better than lead after lead goes through the forces of firing. HeviShot patterns well because it is more dense than lead, and, perhaps, is as least as round as lead after lead goes through the forces of firing. Makes sense to me. My HeviShot does seem to pattern as good as they advertize. Have not shot much Bismuth to develop an opinion.
 
1 - 3 of 3 Posts
Top