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Big Brown

New to Hunting - Shell Recommendation

15 posts in this topic

All right guys. First time duck hunter and I am looking for some advice on shells. I am going with a group of guys with a lot of experience and gear. All I need to bring is my clothes, gun and shells. I have got clothes and a gun but need help on the shells.

I have a semi-auto 12 gauge that can only handle 2 3/4 shells.

Any suggestions on Shot Load, Brand Etc.

All help is appreciated.

Big Brown

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I would highly suggest that you take a look a the DNR's waterfowl supplement. It has all the information you could ever need about the most effective loads for ducks and geese. It also has effective ranges. Its really well thought out, take a look! I will be changing the loads that I use based on this information!

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If you can't kill a duck with Sportsman Steel 2-3/4" 1-1/8 oz #4 shot you're not hittin' 'em. They're inexpensive, less recoil and they work darn good for me.

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I'd say go with Federal 2 shot steel. I don't think you can go wrong with that. With trial an error over time you may find a load that works better, but that should have enough power to kill ducks up to 35 yards or something like that.

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I should say I like the Sportsman's Steel (Remington) 3" #3 in my gun, but when I shot 2 3/4's I always used Federals.

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Well I can tell you what I use. I've shot Federal 2 3/4" Steel mag for ducks and geese for years. I hunt over decoys and my shots are usually under 35 yards. I like using #2 or #1 shot. Both will drop anything you shoot out to 40 yards if you put the pattern on them. I've dropped lots of geese with this set up as well. If I do my job the load will do it's job. I usually get my best performance with a modified or improved cylinder choke.

Good Luck and have a great safe season.

Borch

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I would recomend using Kent fast steel #2 or #4 it has always done good for me

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yeah, I'll be shooting Kent FastSteel this weekend....2 and 4 shot...

for geese, i typically use Fast Steel as well, BB...also, I have a bunch of Tungsten Iron I usually bust out a little later in the season when they are growing a little fat, and when they sometimes don't come take as close of a look at the decoys.

All 3'' by the way though.

S.A.

-we had a goose come in yesterday morning...locked up, but with the wind just taking a look at the decoys. being the only bird we saw all morning, my two hunting buddies and myself all shot...lets just say the Fast Steel did the trick (maybe a little too well)....anyways, go with Fast Steel for ducks and geese..the stuff is foolproof.

s.a

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Tru Bowstring:

I didnt know that you shot Kent Fasteel?
But I'll have to agree with that.

#2 for ducks, BB for geese- ran them through a chronograph and they ran faster then the box says, around 1600fps

Bassman

------------------
cut that sucka'

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2 years ago I started Shooting #2 PMC's for early season ducks then steping up to BB's for later season ducks. That's all I shoot for ducks I don't even think I've chambered a diferent kind of shell since finding these, and of course you can't beat the price. Most people say you get what pay for but not the case for PMC's.

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I would also go with a modified choke tube if you dont have that in already.

I use Federal Duck and Pheasant (1400 fps) Normally 2's early (duck and geese) And BB's late for both. That way I dont need to switch out a smaller shot for a larger for the geese. BB's do beat up a smaller duck pretty good but I dont mind to much. I just use a goose killer load all around.

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Big Brown,

Make sure you shotgun can shoot steel. I have beautiful 12 ga. semi-auto handed down to me by my grandfather. I wanted to bring it with my first time but decided to check to see if it will shoot steel(since steel wasn't necessary back in my grandfathers day) Well, turns out I could have done lots of damage shooting steel through that gun. So I am glad I checked.

Muskieguy.....

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I'll second (or third, or fourth) Kent FastSteel in #2 for duck & BB or BBB for geese. With steel, speed kills.

Also, pick up a box of Hevishot or Fed Tungston for the third shot. The dense pellets penetrate better on the going away shots when the pellet needs to penetrate through the organs to get to the vitals, especially past the gizzard.

I load my own and am running 1.5oz of #1, BB, BBB, and T steel at 1550fps out of my 10ga. Also, my Hevishot duck load is 1.625oz of #4 @ 1350fps and in case a goose makes a pass I have a few 2oz #2 @ 1300fps. Through pattern testing I've found that Hevishot pushed past 1375fps starts to blow patterns in my guns and since at 1350fps #2 Hevi has enough knock-down power at 100yds for ducks & geese, why blow patterns when my shots are within 50yds?

PJ

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Thanks for all of the replies fella's. I am really confused now! Ha! Actually that is a good question as to whether or not the barrel can handle steel. I do not have the gun here at work. Those darn banned premises. But it is a Winchester Semi-Auto with the Win-Lite Barrell. I think that it is a fiberglass/composite barrel. Any info on how this would handle steel?

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Big Brown,

When was the gun made and what choke is the barrel?(If you have an open choke, you might be alright) I have a Model 50 Semi Auto with a Full choke(built 1954) and the steel they used to make the barrel is softer than the steel used to make the new steel shells.(so I was told). Go to winchester dot com and find the "Ask the Expert" section. You can send an email to somebody at Winchester and they might be able to tell you. Or try a gunsmith...or maybe somebody here can help you.

The only non-toxic shells I found soft enough to shoot through my Model 50 were Bismuth at $17 for a box of 10... Which is buku expensive but a last resort if needed.

Muskieguy......

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