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DR XXL vs. WAA12L?

Discussion in 'Uncategorized Threads' started by timb99, Jan 3, 2008.

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  1. timb99

    timb99 Well-Known Member

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    I stated on a different post I plan to load up some 7/8 ounce loads and try the Downrange XXL 7/8 ounce wad.

    My supplier tells me the price on the Downrange wad is the same as his price on the Winchester WAA12L.

    Any strong feelings either way?

    I plan to use Remington hulls, Winchester primers, 17.1+/- grains of Hodgdon Clays, and as close as possible to 7/8 ounces of shot.
     
  2. mercedesman1981

    mercedesman1981 TS Member

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    Nope,

    OTOH, buy a bag of 500 of either and see which patterns best in your gun and see if one or the other leaves more plastic residue in the barrel.

    Mike
     
  3. timb99

    timb99 Well-Known Member

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    Good idea. I may do that, indeed.
     
  4. timb99

    timb99 Well-Known Member

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    PerazziBigBore

    I plan to keep my 7/8 ounce loads about the same speed as my 1 ounce singles loads, or 1200-ish.

    The Downrange website says they're interchangeable, but I have an e-mail in to Hodgdon asking them if they've tested the Downrange wad to confirm.
     
  5. Cold Iron

    Cold Iron Active Member

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    "I plan to use Remington hulls, Winchester primers, 17.1+/- grains of Hodgdon Clays, and as close as possible to 7/8 ounces of shot."

    I have loaded and shot thousands of that combination with the pink XXL except in a red AA. Only because Red AA’s have always held 9 shot for me and I kept it that way. Also did a fair number in Rem Nitro hulls with 8 shot, they pressure and shoot even better in the Rem. I tried several different wads and the XXL just seemed to come out better overall but that may be because I was switching hulls and didn’t want to adjust the press back and forth. Once I finally put on a PFS moved away from the 7/8 loads, but they did work well, especially in a “lesser” venue.

    I started out trying to reduce powder charge to keep the speed the same but with low pressure and cold it can be become a challenge, even with a deeper crimp. That is due in part to being backbored and overbored, tighter bore should not matter as much. Ended up with 17.2 of Clays and had no problems. Found the increase in speed didn't matter as much as I thought it would. I use 17.5 in 1 oz.
     
  6. zzt

    zzt Well-Known Member

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    timb99, like you I keep my 7/8oz loads at 1150fps or 1200fps. After years of trying literally everything under the sun I have found there is only one load, yes one, that performs consistently at those velocities in a Remington hull. That load uses an STS or Gun Club hull (Gun Club very slightly better), a fast powder and a Federal 12S0 wad. It is the only combination that will give you single digit SDs over a chrono. Patterns from the wad are absolutely terrific. Performance is always good, even in single digit temps. With that combo, I have used Clays, Red Dot, Clay Dot and e3. I use Winchester and Remington primers. Save yourself some grief and try it. For the 1200fps loads you want, and of those powder and primer combos will work. If you try to go below 1150fps, watch out for e3. Pressure builds rapidly because the powder is so dense the wad seats more deeply.

    The WAA12L is quite literally worthless in an STS hull. You can't get any consistency until you get above 1250fps, and the patterns suck. If you are going to try it for yourself, don't buy more than 250.

    For me, the verdict is still out on the XXL. When the weather warms I'll try to develop a consistent 1200fps load using it. After all, I have about 1900 left to use up.
     
  7. timb99

    timb99 Well-Known Member

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    zzt,

    I wonder why that is. Hodgdon's data shows, all things equal, the 12S0 has lower pressure than the WAA12L, which would make me guess less consistent.

    Have you tried a TGT-12 wad, and if so, what result?
     
  8. timb99

    timb99 Well-Known Member

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    Also, what was the SD for the WAA12L's?

    Single digid SD is exceptional, but a low double digiit SD, you probably still wouldn't be able to tell the difference when shooting.

    Also, I assume the 12S0 is made for a straight-walled hull, hence a larger OD on the powder end, correct? Are there any issues loading it?
     
  9. zzt

    zzt Well-Known Member

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    Have tried the TGT-12 wad. It works superbly well if you drop a 1/8" 20ga cork disk in the bottom of the shot cup before you drop the shot in. Otherwise you get a dished crimp. That's too much bother and expense. I'll just go with the 12S0 and be done with it.

    The 12S0 automatically seats itself at the correct level in an STS hull. It is only slightly tapered, so there is just so low you can get it with normal wad pressure. Fortunately, that is the right height for giving a perfect crimp. Clays is a bulky powder and you'll never get close to jamming the wad in enough to raise pressures beyond what you would expect. e3, 700X and maybe others are, and the 12S0 seats just a touch deeper.

    I proved the consistency issue to myself just by shooting. There was a world of difference in patterning and on the bird performance between the 12L and the 12S0. Later, when I got a chrono, I knew why. I never did figure out why the 12L patterns so poorly.
     
  10. BDodd

    BDodd TS Member

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    Tim, I've loaded the 12SO wad in AA and STS hulls in the prior century; it was my first experience with the weenies and it worked just fine. All I did was take my 1 oz load of 16.5 gr. 700X and Winch. primers and change the wad and shot drop. This load worked quite well in skeet and then was discovered to kill 16 yard birds with authority. Like you, I was concerned about the use of the straight-wall 12SO in the tapered hull and into this century, I began using the 12L or the CB clone of the gray wad and if anything found better performance and amazingly low standard deviations; I expected and got single digit SDs regularly through experimenting with powder drops of 16.5 to 17.5 gr. of 700X. I'm not a pattern guru like zzt but never had a reason to be concerned. The weenies have honored me with several registered 100s up close and recreational skeet scores as high as 97. I have some XXL wads from Downrange and after my upcoming surgery on the R. arm - again - I'll be giving them a test drive.....breakemall....Bob Dodd
     
  11. zzt

    zzt Well-Known Member

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    The 12S0 will seat at the proper level and leave a slight annular ring in the case. It doesn't hurt a thing and there are no issues loading this wad.
     
  12. timb99

    timb99 Well-Known Member

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    Think I'll get a bag of each and try them both.
     
  13. jimrich60

    jimrich60 Member

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    I recently started using the downrange wad for 7/8 oz loads, STS hull, win209 primer, and 17.1 grains of Clays for a 1200fps 16 yd load. Using a Beretta 682 with Briley chokes. It breaks clays just as well as my 1 oz loads and have been very impressed with consistency, even in the very cold Wisconsin weather this winter. Did go to #8 shot for the 16 yd targets, vs using 7.5 in the 1 oz loads I also use. You can shoot this load all day without recoil fatigue.
     
  14. BDodd

    BDodd TS Member

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    Jim, my last production of the weenies has been exactly that recipe but with the WAA12L clone from Claybuster. It seems to be everything I could expect from previous loadings. It will be the same recipe with the DR XXL wad when I get back to shooting and loading......Bob Dodd
     
  15. BunkerGuy

    BunkerGuy TS Member

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    I had a few samples of the DR XXL wad to work with. The OP cup seems slightly smaller than the 12L: 0.695 vs. 0.706 (plastic is hard to measure) and the wad OP to bottom of the shotcup is slightly longer. The smaller OP cup will fit a touch deeper into the case so maybe that's why the wad is longer by a fraction (as is the Claybuster).

    The DR XXL wad plastic is noticeably stiffer than the 12L. I would guess that the perceived recoil will be slightly higher, but it will take an A-B test to notice it. Winchester did a heck of a job on their wad.

    Both wads load perfectly -- you need a little wad pressure -- in the Remington cases, altho I notice the STS and NITRO27 crimps become convex after a few reloads. I try to use the Gun Clubs. Unless you are willing to use enough wad pressure to crush the wad and use a dense powder i.e. HiSkor 700X, they don't load worth a darn in the new AA 3-piece case (Factory AA 24 gram shells show well-crushed wads as well). The 12SL wad works much better with the AA's and Clay Dot for 24 grams.

    With the 12L wad, I can get about the best you can get in 24 gram pattern performance. My Perazzi throws 85% patterns at 35 yards with the shells running 1300'/s. I used Rem. 209P primers, Hodgdon TiteWad powder (It takes 1300'/s to get good consistency with TiteWad), and Black Diamond shot. VERY few loadings do as well.

    When the weather gets warmer I'll do a A-B pattern test of the 12L vs. the DR XXL wads. Hopefully, the XXL is at least close enuf with the way Winchester wad prices are locally!

    - - Bill
     
  16. Neil Winston

    Neil Winston Well-Known Member

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    ZZT, as I've often said here, I don't do wads. Mostly it's because it's too much work for what I think I would get out of it. Of course I read that this wad patterns "better" than that. but I pay no attention because "better" isn't defined and so the statement is at least untestable, and probably simply meaningless.

    But you've offered something testable up above, so I thought I'd break my rule and "do wads" if even for just a moment. In "real life" I pay no attention and just load one type, then another and have never been able to tell any difference in shooting or even in the shop, for the most part. But your statements were so strong, and so counterintuitive, and so easy to test I thought it would be worth the time.

    The statements I refer to are:

    " . . .I have found there is only one load, yes one, that performs consistently at those velocities in a Remington hull" (refers to the Federal 12SO)

    and

    "The WAA12L is quite literally worthless in an STS hull. You can't get any consistency until you get above 1250fps, and the patterns suck.

    I read that and think "What's special about an STS hull? Why shouldn't a WW wad work in one? They work in AA's; I've loaded them. And, in fact, I mix AA's and STS's all the time and they seem interchangeable. "

    So I went to Metro and got some wads and went to work. Enough Red Dot powder to give speeds in the mid-1100's is dropped by a PACT device and scale and stays within 0.2 grain. The shells are loaded in a Grabber, one by one. Once-fired STS's were primed with WW and ten were loaded using WW 12L wads, ten more with Federal 12SO's.

    The chronograph is an Oehler 71 inductive model, pressure is read by an industry-standard 167a transducer in a cylinder-choke test barrel. Temperature is 60 degrees F.

    The first result we'll look at is shot speed:

    [​IMG]

    As you can see, except for a small. non-significant speed difference in favor of the WW 12L, they are about the same. The Federal has an SD of about 12, the other about 13, which is no difference and OK performance for such light loads with unfavorable pressure:

    [​IMG]

    Here the 12SO is higher by 160 PSI, another insignificant difference, either mathematically or practically.

    These graphs may lead someone to think that speed and pressure are closely linked; they aren't:

    [​IMG]

    One last look at the pressure curves themselves. There's hardly anything here, but Ron Baker has shown that if you load wads intended for tapered hulls in Estate shells and one ounce of shot, it's not going to work and the pressure curves show why; they look terrible. How different are the pressure curves (not just the peak pressure) for these two wads with the same powder and shot charges?

    I picked two with similar peaks and shot speed. Here's the WW 12L:

    [​IMG]

    And the other:

    [​IMG]

    Clearly, they couldn't be more similar.

    So that's my result, ZZT. The two wads were no more different that two tests of ten shells could be expected to be with no wad change at all.

    Neil
     
  17. Neil Winston

    Neil Winston Well-Known Member

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  18. zzt

    zzt Well-Known Member

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    Frankly, I'm more than a little surprised at the results for the 12L. When Bob Dodd said he used the Winchester and the ClayBuster clones and got amazingly low SDs by tuning his 700X loads, I wondered. Now Neil, who was previously unable to produce any 7/8oz loads with low velocity and good SDs until I suggested the 12S0 in an STS hull, comes up with good SDs with the 12L at velocities under 1200fps. All I can say is I was not able to produce comparable results using STS209 primers, Clays and Int Clays in my Beretta barrels. I'll also say I didn't own a chrono back then, so the one chrono session was with left over shells through a Perazzi barrel.

    Doing wads means patterning them, ten at a time, then counting all the holes and recording distribution. At the time I usually used 7 1/2 shot to minimize the number of holes. I drew concentric circles around the pattern center at 10.6", 15", 21.2" and 30", then dotted each hole with a magic marker, counted the holes in each area, entered them into a spreadsheet, and averaged the results.

    A byproduct of dotting each hole with a black marker is that when you are finished and stand back to look at the overall target, you get an excellent illustration of overall distribution and evenness. Much better, in fact, than I currently get using Shotgun Insight. Now before someone says you cannot tell just by looking at a pattern, I'll just say that when the patterns are as uneven as those made using the 12L wad, and the holes are made more visible by dotting, a blind man could see the difference. PE was right up there where you would expect, and sometimes higher, but there were always clusters of shot and gaping holes. That never happened with the 12S0 or the TGT-12 with a 20b cork wad dropped into the shotcup to take up space.

    So while I'm surprised at the low SDs people are getting with the 12L, I'll stick with the 12S0, even though I have to special order them and pay 50% more. The 12S0 has proven itself to be consistent over the chrono, on the pattern board and on the target with several different powders in several different barrels.
     
  19. goosecall

    goosecall TS Member

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    BDodd, I have been using similar load to yours of 16.grs of 700x and the XXL wad, Fiocchi 209 primer, and have had great results, and have even used it for the second shot of doubles. I will be looking forward to your results on the XXL pink wad. 10tenner
     
  20. Neil Winston

    Neil Winston Well-Known Member

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    ZZT, I don't even worry about velocity SD's anymore. My problems with 7/8 oz. and consistency were based on my own type of doubles shooting, which includes lots of marathons, four or five hundred pairs a day, often for several days in a row, for a total of over 10,000 per year.

    I thought that 7/8 would be nice and they were generally fine, but every now and then I'd get an off-sounding shell. As you look at those pressure numbers, I think you can see why. In an average day I might be shooting 100 or more shells with pressures under 6000 PSI and that's borderline. If I were just shooting normal events, it might be a bad-sounding shell every couple of weeks and so seeming to be no problem, but in a marathon it's two or three a day and you decide "These things aren't working" though 99+% of the time they are working.

    Some of those bad-sounding shells were slow, the kind you can feel and almost see the shot moving away. So my rejection of 7/8 was not with the SD's themselves, most of which would have been fine with but a few bad ones, but rather with the slow shells whose speed widened those SD'ds.

    I wonder if you are testing them with a standard-bore or over-bore barrel? If it's a bigger bore, that might account for your preference for 12SO wads.

    Neil
     
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