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Reloadable 12ga shells

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Hi there guys,


So I've been in contact with the owner of reloadableshells.com to make a 12ga shell based on their essential design. I've tried the Magtech brass shells, and the primer pockets have been out of spec for me, and I wanted something more durable than brass anyhow.


He will do a run of shells in anodized 6061 AL. Price will be $30/shell, and we'll need to get a minimum qty of 50. If I get enough interested people, I'll front the money to have them built.


Anyone interested?


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A normal shell and a classic lee loader is about as portable as you could wish for.



That product might make sense as they make it for practicing with grenade launchers, but I don't see how it is any real advantage for shotshells. 


Instead you would be chained to more expensive components that are harder to find: 45ACP blanks. They would also provide much less power, and less versatility.


For a backpack trip, carrying pre-loaded normal shotshells would be lighter. For some kind of setup where you live long term subsistence style in a cabin and you have to pack in your supplies, a classic lee loader, normal powder, wads, shot and the previously mentioned shotshells are still lighter, cheaper and more versatile. If you bought a good hull such as remmington STS and load to PSI ranges under around 10K, you can expect 15-20 reloads per hull. If you planned ahead, you could use a compact powder like clays or tightwad, and plan all your loads to use the same amount of powder and pack just one dipper. You could work up a load using natural materials for wadding at lower PSI data from one of the older manuals or some of the BPI publications and go on as long as you have primers and powder. Simply recover shot and pour "swan shot"


here's a video of a wingnut making things harder on himself than is helpful for no ascertainable advantages, and his system is still less of a hassle.





Here's a guy with a more reasonable system.



One note. You can buy spare parts for MEC brand presses very cheaply most gun stores that sell mec presses will have a tackle box full of spare parts that MEC supplies. A crimp starting tool of the new plastic style is about $2, and is pretty tough and light. If I were building my own lee loader alternative, I would just get one of those in 8 point and one in 6 point and pack a dowel  into a tube to final form the crimp. This makes way more sense to me than cutting the end off of the shell and fiddling about with melting wax or glue, as most of these survivalist minded guys do. Crimps are better and easier. if you don't have the tools, you could start the crimp with your knife point and fingers in about 20 seconds anyway. Why get a worse seal, have a shell that is prone to misfeeds, add the requirement for drying time, and additional supplies just to avoid the perfectly good crimp?

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There is some misunderstanding here, then. The product would not use .45 ACP blanks. It would use powder and 209 shotgun primers; like their XD casing.


The casing is far more durable than a normal shotshell, allowing many more reloads. It is field reloadable. The primers are held in by snap rings, and the whole thing screws apart for maintanence/cleaning and loading.

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Ok. What seals the end? wadding?


I still don't really see the appeal, as carrying powder, shot and primers, and a way to measure them, and keep them dry, etc. is going to be close to as bulky as just carrying a few  normal shotshells. The shorty shells that people get for tube guns don't have legs on the wad so they are even more compact. Then there's 20 gauge and 16.

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I'm with GunFun on this one. The solution is to carry a bunch more shit, plus, bulk powder can be a problem. Get the one container wet, and you've just lost everything. Loaded shells, esp. factory shells, won't mind a little water.

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The other issue to me is the ability to reload quickly in the feild. People figured out the advantage of complete cartridges back in the mid 1800s. They contain all the components, and keep them dry and ready to go.


Having~ 20 shells which are loaded and ready to go should get you out of most any sticky wilderness situation. (say 5 slug, 5 buck, and 10 birdshot)Even if you want to reload those rather than carry more shells, having a few still loaded buys you the time to load during your convenience. IMO that means I am a lot less likely to make mistakes with powder measurements or squib loads while hurrying to reload one of these fancy shells you have in mind. Yes- you could theoretically have a dozen of them too, but at $30 each, 3 sounds a lot more likely. That means that if you hunt any game, firing 2-3 shots you are probably going to be unarmed in at least one of the 3 categories of projectile until you can find a place out of the wind and rain to mess with reloading them. Again, fully loaded shells make the most sense to me, followed by a Lee loader or home-made equivalent. And you should be able to pick up a Lee loader for about the price of one of these shells. 


Another thing I haven't addressed is that aluminum thick enough to avoid fatigue, would be limiting the useful capacity of the shell. It would also require oddball size wadding material. maybe 20 gauge wads? So you'd be most likely converting your 12 into what amounts to a 20.- An over weight 20 gauge with no developed load data. I'd rather pack a very light 20 gauge and a few extra shells and skip all of that. (Most newer 20 ga pumps are built off of 12 ga receivers and are actually  heavier than 12, so you want an old one made purpose built as a 20)

Edited by GunFun
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For the record, I don't want to be a party pooper or discourage innovation. I just think this particular idea actually creates the problems it is supposed to solve. The idea is to make something that is currently pretty easy easier and faster. But it does so at the cost of ability to use commonly available components and information which are not hard to use.


I've seen an increase lately in sleeves to go in a break action shotgun to fire a rifle round or pistol round. I think those are a great idea, but most of the ones on the market are un-rifled, too short, don't have an easy method of extraction, and sit in the chamber loosely so that you cannot be sure of a repeatable point of aim. This is a product worthy of some r&D. It seems to me that having an expanding bushing at each end could solve the alignment issues, and a turned down barrel with an O ring around the end to sleeve snugly down the chamber aprox 8-10" long would be a huge improvement over what Iv'e seen so far. In an over under, with a rifle shell and a shotgun shell, that's a versatile wilderness package.

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I am thinking "sickness" hasnt done a LOT of conventional reloading for 12 gauge...  I know I can get MANY loadings out of a single hull...  and I can get multiple loadings out of the CHEAPEST hulls!!!  Why would I want to spend 30 bucks on ONE hull, when I could load 6 boxes ( Yes, I can load a box of 25 for LESS than five bucks!!) for the same price??? one -vs - 150 rounds = $30.00.  Makes absolutely ZERO SENSE to me... 


Ok, Sickness...  *SELL ME* !!!!!  Why would I want to spend 30 bucks for ONE ROUND when I could load ( and we will even DROP TWO FULL BOXES, and say a hundred!)  a HUNDRED for the same price and make them all different if I wanted to??  Sure they are gonna be heavier than ONE round... but I promise you... when I need to be SHOOTING... I would rather have 100 rounds at hand, than have to twiddle my twat trying to reload ONE SINGLE each and every time....


Again... SELL ME!! Why the fuck would I want a 30 dollar shotgun round?!?!?!?

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Assuming that its easier to pack, I'd still go with a muzzle loader or just use regular shot shells.  $30/shell is way too high for that kind of convenience.  


As far as packing in long term, it seems to me you want would do better to stock the site you want to arrive at, than carrying everything with you.  If you want to be a gypsy out in the woods long term, I'd still go normal route.  That shell base sounds a little complex and adding to the problems, and if you are wandering out there long enough, I'd assume you'd find shells anyway.  Lastly, wandering out there that long with that much crap would be too much a pain.


If you hit craigs list, I think you could easily find full shot reloading setup, and probably with some powder, primers, shot, wads, and shells.

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Just  bought 250 rounds of 12gauge at Cabellas for 59.00.

Shot 100 of them today, 

Out of curiosity, what are the chances of losing one of those 30.00 rounds. My Saiga 12 throws hulls all over the place like it is raining hulls when I shoot. 
If in the woods, I could not imagine finding all the left over hulls. I would hate to think I shot several rounds, and the Siaga chucked them hull over in a creek, or down a hillside.... reaching under old logs is a great way to get bit by various critters.

Edited by JerryP
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