The Curmudgeon receives many requests for his own pet loads and many of his personal favorites are published through Load of the Week. Our ballistic lab has gone a step further and is now making it even easier for you to load some of these tried and true loads. You, too, can be a Curmudgeon in the field.
Bismuth is back, and it is perfectly suited to the needs of fine doubles and older shotguns. Our new production lots of bismuth pellets are alloyed with 6% tin to produce stronger, high-density pellets of excellent quality, integrity, and ballistic capability. Our bismuth pellets are field tested to perform well for upland game and duck loads. Suitable for use in all types of shotguns, including smallbores and those with fixed choke barrels, BPI's bismuth shot is quickly becoming the go-to non-toxic shot for America's classic shotgunners - especially 16 gauge shooters.
This loading package was put together by our lab for our favorite 16 gauges. There are five loads that range in velocity from 1185 to 1410 f.p.s. These field loads maintain pellet lethality while operating at relatively low pressure. All you have to supply is the powder (Green Dot or Universal Clays).
Designed to be effective loads with minimal components, these recipes are quick and easy to
assemble. Because there are no filler wads, they can be loaded using a single-stage or progressive press (we still recommend a single-stage press for all hunting loads). Note: it is important to keep in mind that bismuth shot and lead shot have slightly different volumes by weight. This means that 1 oz. of bismuth shot does not occupy the same volume as 1 oz. of lead shot. Depending on the pellet size being used, bismuth shot will typically require using one bushing or charge bar size larger to drop an equivalent weight to lead shot. Always use a scale to double-check your shot drops.
If you are loading on a MEC press, we highly recommend using an Universal Charge Bar. This tool allows you to custom dial in your bismuth shot charge to achieve more accurate drops. Again be sure to check shot payloads with a scale.