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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Was doing some pattern tests the other day in order to try to find the ideal combat load for my combat shotgun.

I have narrowed it down to two loads, both of them Winchester XX (which means copper plated buffered shot).

The first one is a 2 ¾” load with 12 copper plated pellets.

The second one is the 3" version, with 15 plated pellets.

Recoil is simmilar with both rounds and is managable. My shotgun can hold 7 of either, so capacity is no advantage for either. The 2 ¾” shells have more velocity (and power) per pellet, but the 3" version has 3 extra pellets to hit with.


Averaged Velocity for each load from a chronographer

Winchester XX 2 ¾” 12 pellet 00: Average: 1,221 fps
648 grains @ 1,221 fps –2,145 ft/lbs (179 per pellet)

Winchester XX 3” 15 pellet 00:Average: 1,100 fps
810 grains @ 1,100 fps –2,176 ft/lbs (145 per pellet)


(note, I am not concerned about stray pellets, this is a combat round, and the only thing downrange would be enemies. I just want the most devistating and effective round possible)

What follows are some pictures of how each of the loads patterned at 30 yards.


Winchester XX 2 ¾” 12 pellet 00









Winchester XX 3” 15 pellet 00







Evaluate the loads and feel free to let me know, which you think I should choose to be my combat load?
 

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I did something like this a number of years ago and settled on 2-3/4" #4 buckshot or 2-3/4" #1 buckshot. There are different loads in this length. IIRC the #4 buck comes in 27 and 34 pellet loads and the #1 comes in 16 and 20 pellet loads depending on the manufacturer.

In the 3" shells Federal offers a load with 41 #4 pellets.

Of course at home defense ranges a load of #4 bird shot will ruin the perps day.
 

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I also like the #4 shot for home defense where avoiding over penetration is a concern. But for combat, where the primary objective is to stop the enemy, with no extra capacaty advantage to the shorter shell I would go with the the one that puts the most holes in the target. I don't think 121 fpm will make much difference at shotgun range, but I know that two more .32cal (appx) will make a difference.

Just my opinion.

pointman
 
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