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Locked and Stocked
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I have a large nearly unlimited supply of shotgun shell hulls, I want to load some cheap rounds! Any advise or anyone done any loading with some homebrew stuff. I have a supplier for ceramic bearings. Free cause they where miscast. Would that work or would they shatter?
 

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Only way is to try it out! I'm new at it as well but from what I gather it's pretty easy to do. I suggest going to your local knowledgable gun store and ask them for info. Obtaining a reloading station used and inexpensively (sub-100 range) is fairly simple too.
 

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I know I've seen reloading gear for shotguns, the information and supplies exist. I just haven't had any need for it ... yet.

Edit: Oh, go into the section on weapons, and scroll to the reloading section, I just noticed this was in "general." Out of all the reloaders here, there's bound to be a person or three that have reloaded to feed their shotgun!
 

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I have a large nearly unlimited supply of shotgun shell hulls, I want to load some cheap rounds! Any advise or anyone done any loading with some homebrew stuff. I have a supplier for ceramic bearings. Free cause they where miscast. Would that work or would they shatter?
Grandpa used to load with rocksalt, for the "little bastards" that keep bustin up his mush melons.
 

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I would experiment with the ceramic bearings. For close range hunting/defense, or even plinking, I would think they would work ok. The ceramic will not have the sectional density of lead or steel, however. Penetration will suffer on large animals. But for the majority of things you shoot with a shotgun, penetration isn't a huge issue.
 

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http://www.hodgdon.com/

http://www.imrpowder.com/index.html

About mid page is the entrance to the reloading info for any type, load, hull brand, wad -- whatever you might need for reloading shotshells.

I have a full complement of MEC reloaders anything from a simple "Junior" which can be found used for less than $100 to the 9000G which "hits" six stations of the turret at once.

The only thing I can see that might be an issue is if these bearings are the same weight as lead -- the shot cup in the wad holds X amount of lead and the bar on the reloader "throws" X amount of shot through a milled hole. Speed and patterning might be affected if the weights are substantially different. I've never used anything but lead shot and don't every vary off the reloading chart,

(but as a disclaimer -- I'm not responsible if you injure yourself. :D:)

Since you reminded me, I'm going to step away from the computer and, yes, reload some shells. PULL!!
 

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Started reloading shotgun shells recently with a used Mec 600 ($30 off Ebay). The process isn't hard.

Biggest difference would be the weight of the loads since you're using something outside the normally used items. For that you'll need to work backwards. Get something like a 1 1/8 oz load cup fill it up with the bearings then weight them . Then find the correct powder and charge for that weight.

There isn't as much wiggle room in shotgun shells like there is in brass rounds. Even changing primers has a drastic effect.

So be real careful.
 
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McLovin has given the best advice in this post. Reloading is NOT the time to be guessing about a load.

If you have any questions about what happens when a load goes bad just search on the net for it and you'll see the results. I really hope you do not follow though with this plan.

Carbon
 

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noted with thanks but my original inquiry was what have you loaded ?
All I've loaded is lead. 00 buckshot to #8 birdshot and everything in between.

Got the press for Christmas and just finished up 2000 rounds.
It was a weak point in my stored ammo, but not anymore.:thumb:

All of the buckshot (00,0 and #2) was handmade from wheel weights.
 

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Capability, not scenarios
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There *are* ways to experiment with this, but it must be done intelligently, and it must be done with the realization that you may destroy a gun in doing so.

I've read of people using rock salt in shotgun shells, so there's precedent for using something other than lead. You can also find steel shot, you can use SABOT rounds, you can use slugs.

Unless the ceramic bearings were HEAVIER than lead, I would expect them to behave similarly to other kinds of lighter projectiles, like salt.

Let me ask this question: If you loaded a shotshell with no shot, what would happen? The wad would fly out, but other than that?

What would happen if you added a few ceramic bearings? A few more? Unless you created a blocked chamber, I don't see how this is different than any other of the various things people fill shotshells with.

If i were doing something like this, I'd probably shoot it off a rest by pulling the trigger with a string and standing far back or behind a barrier. I'd also use an old shotgun, one that wouldn't cause me heartache if it blew up.

Finally, and a disclaimer: I reload for my pistols and rifles, but not my shotguns, as I don't see enough cost advantage over buying cases of shells at Farm and Fleet on sale. I've worked up plenty of loads for my other guns, but never for a shotgun. However, it seems to me the above conditions are reasonable, and I'd entertain a great argument, politely put since I'm not calling anyone an idiot here, that what I've suggested above is crazy.

Disclaimer: You do what you do at your own risk, and I take no responsibility for what you as a free and independent citizen decide to do outside the bounds of normal reloading practices. Or even within those bounds.
 

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I'm fond of round lead balls of various sizes and weight, a couple hundred years of shotgun history has made the decision for me, forget the strange stuff and stick with what is proven best.
 

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DON'T EVEN BEGIN TO THINK ABOUT DOING THIS!!!!!!!!!!!!!

There are no published loads for ceramic shot. Follow any reloading data exactly
as spelled out. You risk great personal injury to do otherwise.

Ceramic is a fraction as dense as lead.

McLOVIN
Yup you are absolutely correct. :thumb:
(But it sounds better coming from a guy)

I've only loaded lead shot, magnum or not, in sizes 9, 8, 7-1/2 and 6; and reclaimed shot which is mined off of skeet and trap fields. Its a mixture of sizes, but works fine for target shooting. Loads of 12 ga. 1-1/8 oz, 1 oz, and 7/8 oz, as well as 20 ga. 28 ga. and 410 cal. Always using prescribed combinations of hulls, wads, powder and primers.

I know guys that twiddle endlessly with all sorts of combinations -- I just don't have the gumption.
 

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I think ceramic is going to be too light to give you much distance. Density is the reason lead has been so popular and why steel shot is so universally hated. Lighter weight pellets lose velocity too fast. But try them and find out. They might hold together and work great at closer ranges.
 

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The issue with ceramic bearing is the same as steel shot. It hits the forcing cone at the front of the chamber and then the choke at the end of the barrel. Lead will compress, steel and ceramic will not. You are talking thousands of pounds of pressure in a thin shotgun tube 2 inches from your head and you want to save a few cents per round? Go to the library and research some loading manuals. I enjoy safe reloading very much.
 

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Please stay with known reloading practices. Why risk trouble. It is not worth it. Yes, I'm sounding like my Dad.


If any of your empty hulls are high-base, you made need to get a way to 're-size' them. My Mec 600 Jr. would not.
 

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People have loaded lighter payloads into shotgun shells for years without any problems. Your problems come about with larger/heavier loads than normal. The two concerns that are legitimate are 1) Ceramic shot won't compress 2) Ceramic is very hard, even harder than steel. This could cause some wear issues.
 
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