April 19, 2013
Gun Video: Shooting Dimes (And Other Stuff) from a Shotgun
By Phil Bourjaily
Along with “splitting Oreos,” “shooting odd stuff out of shotguns” is now a YouTube sub-genre. In this clip it’s dimes and pounded pellets. Others have bits of wire, hot dogs (seriously), washers, .22 pellets, and almost anything else you can fit in a 12 gauge hull. Don’t try this at home. Let other people try it at their homes and watch the results instead. It’s safer. These particular guys seem to sort of know what they are doing, but, to no one’s surprise, many YouTube reloaders do not.
The two videos show how flat shot behaves in the air – one is a load of 7 ½ shot beaten with a hammer, then loaded back in the shell. The other is a load of dimes. While the 7 1/2s spread out at close range – check the widest pellet strikes on the backstop – you can really see what happens to flat shot when it meets air resistance in the video of the dimes.
One way to make spreader loads for shooting birds at close range in the brush is to use flattened or square shot although I am not sure anyone offers either currently.
Orvis used to sell a brush load made of flat pellets although not as flat as the shot in this video. Like the flattened shot in the picture, it sometimes made round holes and sometimes made flat slits in the paper when you patterned it. The patterns opened up very quickly and fell apart just as quickly. Some of the pellets veered far off course (as you can see one dime veer to the right of the target in the video) so the boxes were marked “not recommended for covey rises” to keep collateral quail casualties down. I shot a few woodcock and one ruffed grouse with them and in the woods at 10-15 yards they were the ticket. Beyond that, you might as well have been shooting hot dogs at them.