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4 petal vs. 8 petal wads

Discussion in 'Uncategorized Threads' started by REDD04, Aug 29, 2007.

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  1. REDD04

    REDD04 TS Member

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    What are the advantages/disadvantages of the 4 petal vs. 8 petal wads?

    It would appear that the 8 petal wads would open quicker, BUT will a quicker opening wad create more open or tighter patterns?

    Patternmaster and several makers of ported chokes claim that they separate the wad from the shot sooner, resulting in tighter patterns.

    Federal claims that their new wads in their Black Cloud ammo stays with the shot longer, resulting in tighter patterns.

    Some claim that partially slit petals will pattern tighter than petals that are slit all of the way down, using the same wad.

    What are your findings???????

    Thanks,
    REDD
     
  2. timb99

    timb99 Well-Known Member

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    The wads with 8 petals are a pain in the ass to load on my machine. That's why I don't use them. Frankly, that's about it.

    I have not found there to be a significant difference in perfomrance, one way or another, at the range.

    I have friends, however, who believe the 8-petal wads are the best.

    As with all things, use whatever works best for you.
     
  3. jbmi

    jbmi Well-Known Member

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    I use only Downrange 8 petal wads for both 1 oz and 1 1/8 oz loads. I tried the typical 4 petal wads from Rem, and Claybusters, but found the Downrange jammers just load and shoot better for me.
    Nothing scientific, just something that works for me
     
  4. Johnny

    Johnny Well-Known Member

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    Don't believe advertisements or anyone here. Buy what you can get the cheapest, they all work and you won't know the difference.
     
  5. Capt. Morgan

    Capt. Morgan TS Member

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    I prefer 4 petal wads made by the ammo companies for a couple reasons.

    Original 8 petal wads (ie. Windjammer) come through with curled petals. I have to put them in a dryer in a mesh bag for about 5 minutes to straighten them out or my shot tube will catch a petal or 2 during the drop and deposit shot outside the wad. And if I don't use them within about 24 hours they start to curl again. It slows my loading down to have to watch each shot drop to make sure the wad is straight.

    The aftermarket 8 petal wads I used (ie Claybuster) had thicker petals which pushed the shot up a little higher in the hull and made for crimp problems. Also the wads are heavier than the OEM wads.

    I use the 4 petal wads made by ammo companies like Winchester and Remington for both 1 and 1.125 oz loads because the 4 petal wads from CB have the tick petals that cause me crimp problems unless I squash the wads into the hull.
     
  6. AveragEd

    AveragEd Well-Known Member

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    My findings may not be scientific but, I've found eight-petal wads (Windjammers and their clones) to shoot a little softer than four-petal wads. Perhaps this is due to their lighter weight, but if you load two boxes of the same recipe with only the wad changed between boxes, you will probably notice a small difference.

    A more verifiable difference is in velocity. I recently found identical loads with Remington TGT-12S wads chronographed 25 to 50 FPS faster than those with Windjammers. One-ounce loads were closer to 25 FPS faster, 1-1/8 ounce handicap loads were around 50 FPS faster and 1-1/8 ounce 16-yard loads were somewhere in the middle. All three were loaded with PB powder and Federal 209A primers in STS hulls.

    Ed
     
  7. Avaldes

    Avaldes Well-Known Member

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    Timely thread. I have just been considering a patterning test with my pet loads. Ideally 10 shots each and use Dr Jones' program for statistical analysis. I use STS or Nitro hulls with Clays powder and win 209 primers. I want to test the following:

    Singles loads, 17.4 gr - WJ 1 oz, Rem TGT-12, Spolar Gold 1 1/8, Rem Figure 8

    Handicap loads, 18.6 gr - Spolar Gold 1 1/8, Rem Figure 8

    I don't have a time frame for this, but I will definitely post the results.

    -Aaron
     
  8. BDodd

    BDodd TS Member

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    Sir Average, can we assume that you used the same other components and weights of powder and shot for your tests? Would this not explain why WJs generally call for more powder to get similar velocities of loads with other wads as published in the manuals?.....Bob Dodd

    PS, I know you said "identical" but just making sure. BD
     
  9. AveragEd

    AveragEd Well-Known Member

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    Yes Bob, the powder and shot charges were identical. They were loaded at the same time with only the wads being changed between groups of shells. They were then shot over the chronograph at the same time.

    I've now gone to using the TGT-12S for everything - I used to use them for one-ounce loads and Windjammers or FIG-8s for the heavier stuff, but since the TGT-12S will work for both, I figured I'd simplify things.

    I don't know if that's the reason for the heavier powder charge recommendaions for Windjammers, but it makes sense.

    Ed
     
  10. Trap2

    Trap2 Well-Known Member

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    REDD.... Bob Dodd and I have been emailing back and forth over this very subject for the past few days. I am enclosing my last email to him for you to review. Perhaps you will find it informative..... Dan Thome (Trap2)

    "Bob,
    I understand your curiosity, believe me. As you know, I have been reloading for more years than I care to admit. Along the way, I have made some very interesting discoveries regarding loads, velocities, pressures, etc. One is, don't believe everything you hear, or read. Depending on the powder you are shooting, the "published" information does, indeed, suggest bumping the amount of powder when using Windjammers. The amount to increase it is, of course, soley based on the brand of powder being used. But, is it really necessary?
    Take my case for example; I am using 18.5 grains of Promo for 11/8oz. loads. I have chronographed these loads using both Windjammers and Blue dusters to create a comparison. Over a 10 shot spread with each load, I found a difference of 25fps +/-, with the Duster being the faster load. I changed absolutely nothing in my load except the wad. I performed the same test with factory Winchester AA12 wads and got basically the same results. These loads were shot with a 34" DB-81 barrel bored .742" and choked to .708". As you can see, the results aren't even worth the effort to change anything. Carrying it even further, I loaded some more loads with 16gr. of Promo using Windjammer wads and the Jammer XL from Downrange with 1oz. of shot. This is a very soft, light, load. Using another 10 shot comparison, over the chronograph, there was little, or no, difference at all, in speed between the 2 wads. I found this to be very interesting since I assumed at a lower volume, the difference would be more readily noticeable. It was not.
    As for your friends having weak sounding loads, or bloopers, this was caused, I'm certain, by the wad cocking in the hull during the reloading process. If the gas seal is properly seated over the powder, there can be no blooper. Look at the old cardboard wads used many years ago. The Windjammers of old were very prone to cocking and had to be reloaded with more vigilance than others. The new Windjammers do not have that problem.
    I was a nay sayer regarding the Windjammers for many years. Larry Williams, at the old Redding Gun Club, used to load them many years ago. He gave me some to try and I just didn't have the patience, or confidence in them, to deal with them as I was also sold on Winchester wads at the time. Since then, however, I have learned that all I have read, and heard, about the Windjammer, was mostly hearsay and not supported by facts.
    I stumbled onto the Windjammers when I was trying to find the Jammer XL wads in 1oz. I wanted to do the comparison and was so impressed with the Windjammers, I switched to them. I can ABSOLUTELY notice a difference in the way my targets break from the 27 yard line when compared to other wads I have used since I switched. Since switching, I have gone from the 25 yard line back to the 27 yard line in 6 shoots. While I'm sure the wad, alone, is not the reason, I am sure it is part of the equation. I don't think any shooter can really notice a difference of 50fps +/- from the 27 yard line shooting a 3dr load. If the load is a little slower, you immediately get used to it and adjust accordingly..... Dan"
     
  11. zzt

    zzt Well-Known Member

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    I'm going to piggy back onto what Average Ed said.

    First, Winjammer (original), DRM windjammer replacements and Spolar Gold wads all shoot "softer" that a Fig-8 in my 1 1/8oz reloads. The reason is that the Windjammers average 4 grains lighter than the Fig-8 wads. 4 grains doesn't sound like a lot, but it is enough to notice. As Ed says, the difference is small.

    I have used the Windjammer and DRM replacements on and off for a while. I wanted to "test" Spolar's assertion that their plastic was so much slicker than what other manufacturers used, you could cut your powder charge by .5gr and still get the same velocity. They also mentioned increased consistency. So I bought some and paid a small fortune to have them shipped to me. Here is what I found.

    Load: STS hulls, W209 primers, 19.3 gr Green Dot and 1 1/8oz West Coast magnum shot with Remington Fig-8 and Spolar Gold wads. I chronographed these loads back to back using a fixed full choke barrel with 6' between the muzzle and the first screen. The results for ten shot strings each, as they came off the reloader, counting every result with no editing or deletion, I got the following:

    SG wad: average velocity- 1200.7fps, lowest vel- 1188fps, highest vel- 1212fps, SD- 9.006788.

    Fig-8 wad: average velocity- 1208.4fps, lowest vel- 1188fps, highest vel- 1226fps, SD- 11.13752.

    So, I'd say the Sploar's hype is not justified. Their "super slick" plastic delivered and average of 8fps less than the Fig-8. That's not a significant difference. However, it is certainly not "more" velocity with .5gr less powder. The difference in SDs is also not significant.

    Regarding patterning differences, I say they are pretty much the same. If you twist my arm until I said something different, I'd say the DRM Windjammer replacement "seems" to deliver more open and slightly more even patterns than the Fig-8. Again, the differences are not significant, and I don't think you should read too much into 10 pattern results.

    Windjammer and DRM Windjammer replacements and Spolar Gold (DRM Windjammer replacement using Spolar's proprietary plastic resin) and Remington Fig-8 wads all fly true. That is, they follow the shot path. They do not wobble or veer off the shot flight path unless they cocked when you loaded them, or you bent a petal(s) back when loading. The original Windjammer travels the shortest distance, the DRM is next, but only slightly farther than the Windjammer. The Fig-8 travels the farthest, with the Spolar Gold a moderately close second.

    So from my testing, there is no significant difference between the Spolar Gold Windjammer type wad and the Fig-8. Ditto for the original Windjammer and the DRM replacement, except for a little less velocity.

    The Winjammer(s) go a little slower than the Fig-8, have a touch less actual and perceived recoil (for the same velocity) and pattern essentially the same. PBB says every barrel is a rule unto itself. I don't necessarily disagree; however, I didn't notice a difference across 7 barrels. Even my Berreta barrels which were notoriously finicky about what you fed them liked Windjammers. I haven't ever found two wads that were so close in performance in the loads I use. They are virtually indistinguishable. I certainly wouldn't lose any sleep over using any of them.

    Fig-8s cost me $82/5000 now. DRM Windjammer replacements are $66/5000. I'm almost out of Spolar Golds, and I won't be buying more, because the shipping costs make using them prohibitive. So when I run out of my stash of $58/5000 Fig-8s, I'll probably buy DRMs because of the current price difference.
     
  12. Trap2

    Trap2 Well-Known Member

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    zzt... That pretty well sums up what I found as well. I found the original Windjammer to be an exceptionally good wad. Using the clothes dryer trick on them, they load very easily, they pattern great, have less "felt" recoil, and are very economical. I didn't find any disadvantage to the minute decrease in velocity over a factory 4 petal wad, nor any conclusive reason to load a 4 petal over the Windjammer..... Just my experience......Dan Thome (Trap2)
     
  13. BDodd

    BDodd TS Member

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    Good thoughts from Ed, Steve, and Dan. I appreciate the work but will likely have to do it myself at the next opportunity. I've always had the impression that the published data proved the WJ style needed more powder, sometimes a full grain or more, to match velocities of loads with other wads and had acquaintances that had semi-bloopers with them when loading below the recommendations in manuals.

    Now, which WJ or clone is it that has the petals stiched so there is less likelihood of folding a petal over on the shot drop tube? I'd want to have that dilemma solved 'cuz it was the reason to stop even playing with them 20 years ago...gratiae....Bob Dodd
     
  14. Trap2

    Trap2 Well-Known Member

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    Bob.... The ORIGINAL Windjammer wad now comes stitched so the old problems have been minimized. Just throw them into the clothes dryer for about 5 minutes to allow the petals to relax, take them out and let them cool off, and start loading. If you are going to Medford, I will be happy to bring up some of the 11/8oz. wads for you to play with. I know you are a 1oz. shooter, but, if you want to experiment with some 11/8oz. just to get some idea of what the wad really can do, let me know. If you are not going to be there, perhaps someone from your area will be that can shuttle them back to you. If that doesn't work, email me you home address and I will send you a small care package to toy with........Dan
     
  15. zzt

    zzt Well-Known Member

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    The stitching on the new Windjammers helps, but does not cure the problem. It helps almost as much as when Remington stitched the Fig-8 and TGT-12. Use the dryer trick Bob. BTW, the DRM replacements have been coming with a 2 degree flair on the petals for quite a while. That seems to make more of a difference than the stitching does.
     
  16. mercedesman1981

    mercedesman1981 TS Member

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    Bob Dodd,

    Any perceivable advantage of a stitched wad v.s. unstitched? In my MEC Sizemaster, I lose a pair of petal stitches when inserting the wad unless there is another way to install the wad.

    Thanks,

    Mike
     
  17. poacherjoe

    poacherjoe Well-Known Member

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    ZZT; Have you yourself or anyone else reading this tried using MOTOR MICA?? I have read that by lubricating the wads with it you can get 5% more velocity.I myself have been using it but I have no access to a chronograph to verify the results.It only takes a small amount to coat 250 wads like 1/2 teaspoon.If you use more than that you will get alot of mica build up on the wad ram and a little mess to clean up!PJ
     
  18. Trap2

    Trap2 Well-Known Member

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    PJ.... I use motor mica for my meat shoot loads, and have been doing so for years. I really only use it now when I reload federal paper hulls. I do not notice any difference in velocity, over the chronograph, with, or without, the motor mica on the wads. I only do it now because I have some and it's an old habit. When it is gone, I will not use it any more. This falls into the category I described above as " don't believe everything you read, or hear". It just isn't true. Adding motor mica to your wads does absolutely nothing to increase speed.... Just my experience...Dan Thome (Trap2)
     
  19. JerryP

    JerryP Active Member

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    "Regarding patterning differences, I say they are pretty much the same."

    Redd, now that you have read all of these posts that admission by zzt is all you need to know. Buy the one cheapest one you can get locally and you'll be fine. I doubt you can buy a bad wad. Even Neil Winston states he doesn't do wads. It would take thousands of rounds to test and compare wads, then it would take thousands more to verify the conclusions. I doubt anyone have ever done that to a meaningful degree.
     
  20. BDodd

    BDodd TS Member

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    Dan, I've had to rule out Medford for reasons I'll not share. Sir Lynch pre-squadded me due to a misunderstanding, sq. 20, and I hope he or Sue have corrected that. If you would care to send a care package with say 50 or 100 wads, just give them to John Lynch and I'll seeya 'bout (Sept. in Madras? you'd love it; 4 h-caps!) or send you some legal tender as you wish. I appreciate that offer.

    ZZT and Mike, I kinda figured that about the stitches; in fact the stiched Rems were so difficult to get on the tube a year or so ago, I sold the nearly full case to a prince of a fine shooter in Idyho. The DR wads are likely the primo fix but I've not figured out how to get them to Orygun at a reasonable cost without ordering 15 or more cases at a time. We'll see what I work out. Mas Gracias....Bob Dodd
     
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