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Federal Black Cloud??

Discussion in 'Shooting Related Threads' started by bodybuilder, Nov 29, 2011.

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  1. bodybuilder

    bodybuilder TS Member

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    I'm getting ready to buy some shells for our 2nd goose season. Is the Black Cloud worth the little xtra money or is all steel shot shells the same? Thanks
     
  2. grnberetcj

    grnberetcj Active Member

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    It's a very good shell...(but steel is steel)

    For geese use a minimum of BB size @ 1450 fps....shoot within 35 yds and you'll be fine. (I use this for Snow Geese, will not use the good shells on these critters)

    Ducks use #3 (or #2) shoot within 35 yds.

    Depends on how much you hunt and what caliber of shot you are, it's always better to use the Hevi-shot non-toxic shells which is a far superior load to steel.

    Steel loads in the right hands is deadly, steel in the hands of a weekend pilgrim and bunny-buster is inhumane.

    Curt
     
  3. Force Break

    Force Break TS Member

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    Check how they pattern in your gun before you buy lots. They do not pattern worth a damn in either of my 870's one with factory and one with Hastings bbl.
    I get my best patterns with Win. Supreme's and Rem. Hyper Steel. Both are goose and duck slayers and have laid a few dithch parrots low. I am also shooting some Win Blind Sides, pattern OK but so far don't seem to hit very hard. Yes I am shooting at birds well under 40 yds. Shoot well and shoot often.
     
  4. minnship8

    minnship8 Well-Known Member

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    I have done a fair bit of waterfowl guiding and the jury is split from the people I speak with. I find very few that are middle of the road, actually, I can't think of a single one. They either love it or they hate it.

    I have shot it and to me, it doesn't allow me any more range, but it does result in dead birds, not dusted or gliders.

    All that being said, how many birds are you going to shoot at this season? If it's less than 30, why not shoot heavy shot. That will give you more range and better kills.

    For me, I like the Fed Speed Shok BB's on geese and 2's on quackers. I just go through too many cases of shells a season to be buying heavy shot or black cloud.

    Regards,
    Chip
    [​IMG]


    P.S. Most of the geese I shoot and guided for are Canadas which are quite a bit tougher than those wimpy snows.
     
  5. bodybuilder

    bodybuilder TS Member

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    I shoot canadas and not all that many, Like you said they are tough in the early season I knocked the feathers off several that kept flying that is why I want the best shells possible maybe hevi shot is the answer
     
  6. Kevin Nelson

    Kevin Nelson Member

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    We had a guy come to our gun club a couple of years ago the was supposedly a "Shot expert". He demoed a lot of shot, tested patterns, went into detail about all of it, he was pretty impresive and talked a good game. He said the Black Cloud shot was some of the worst on the market. It is reject shot they they used to not use, but they have found a way to market it so us dummys will fall for it. Have you ever cut one open and looked at it, looks like deformed shot to me.
     
  7. markc2

    markc2 Member

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    It is "flight stopper" steel and it is designed with a cutting edge around the pellet. It is not reject shot; it is specifically designed that way to cut, twist, and impart energy upon entry. Out of the proper choke tube it patterns great. There are specific Black Cloud tubes available, but the biggest thing to remember is that it generally patterns best out of a non ported tube. Ported tubes tend to strip the flight stopper wad and spread the pattern.
    It is absolutely the most devestating steel shot available. It will kill waterfowl DEAD with one shot if you do your part. You will shoot 2-3 regular steel shot shells (just to get a kill) for every one Black Cloud shell. While the high density loads are definitely great (and carry a great price tag), Black Cloud will perform far superior to any other STEEL load in most cases.
     
  8. Kevin Nelson

    Kevin Nelson Member

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    And you know this because ????????? Have you actually opened one up and looked at it?
     
  9. rbk18

    rbk18 Member

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    I've been shooting it sence it came out. I feel it kills more ducks and geese, but that's me. It patterns in both my 12ga and 10ga. I feel it give's me one less thing to think about.
     
  10. g7777777

    g7777777 TS Supporters TS Supporters

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    No more range with the same size shot as regular steel

    But a lot more very dead birds within that range

    Regards from Iowa

    Gene
     
  11. superxjeff

    superxjeff Active Member

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    Well.. My parts has killed the better part of 300 ducks this season already and we have none of the problems people talk about. Shoot steel size BBB shot and your birds will fall dead out to 45 yards and farther. IM or Modified choke tends to work best. I shoot 1 1/2 load of size T shot in my 10ga. Very few woundded birds. They just fall dead with 3 to 5 holes in them.

    The Blackcloud is very choke specific but it doesn't kill better then any other pellet that weighys the same amount.

    The claims made about Blackcloud are ludicrus in the first place! Steel has a very short shot string and deforms very little do to it being so hard. You want dead ducks and geese? Just shoot BBB's for ducks and BBB or T for Geese in a 12ga and T's in a 10ga.

    Everybody that hunts with us comes away with a new perspective on steel after they realise they really need to move up in size to get dead birds on a regular basis over 40 yards. Most guys say they have trouble killing them dead over teh decoys. That was what happned to me many years ago and I just kept upping the shot size until it stopped.

    Steel can be effective but you need big pellets and faster is better then slower.
     
  12. Grade VI

    Grade VI Member

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    Location:
    Northwestern PA.
    I have been using Black Cloud for several years and am very impressed with it's results. I use NO. 2's in the early season and switch to BB's for our late season. I killed about 40 geese last year and close to 20 so far this year. The best part of the season starts next Monday and stays in until late January. I like a modified choke in my Benelli. We hunt over decoys but do some pass shooting too. If you can judge distance, you can kill geese.
     
  13. FE180

    FE180 TS Member

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    I have spent a lot of hours patterning and hunting with different loads this past year. I found that BlackCloud and Hevi-Steel, do not pattern well in my Extrema's
    or my 870's. They still kill geese dead but no more so that standard Dry-Lock loads.

    The new Win Blindside, patterns awesome out of my Extrema with IC choke and was devastating on Canada's this week in the Texas Panhandle. But so was the less expensive BBB Drylock.

    I am the least impressed with BlackCloud than any other offering out there that I have tried. But some Gun/Choke combos may love the stuff.

    The Hevi-Shot(not Hevi-steel) is the single most deadly thing I have ever used including lead. But I just cant pay $3.00 a shell.
     
  14. WoodsonEnt

    WoodsonEnt Active Member

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    Kevin56,

    MarkC2 works for Federal. It's his job to know.
     
  15. hrosik123

    hrosik123 Member

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    Black Cloud makes a great shell and I use 3" #3's. Your question has too many variables. Time shooting some shells at a board will help. Xpert BB's pattern best for me. I like feet in my face when I hunt so you need to determine your hunting style.
     
  16. slide action

    slide action Well-Known Member

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    Heard good things but haven't used e'm.The higher grade steel loadsprobably have a little advantage. If I shoot at Geese it'll probably be Hevi-Shot. If you are using steel, My experience is nothing smaller than BBs Period. With Hevi-Shot I can cut back to # 2s but at nearly 2 bucks a shell it's expensive! bismuth is better than steel but still falls way short of Hevi-Shot in performance.
     
  17. SouthMetro Shooter

    SouthMetro Shooter TS Member

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    Love Black Cloud shells. I get them Greater Geese from Canada with em all day. 1 shot = 1 Bird. Haven't had this luck with other shells. My 2 cents
     
  18. brownk80

    brownk80 Member

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    When I read "Federal Black Cloud" the first thing that popped into my mind is that everyone finally realized that there has been a cloud hanging over Washington ever since Barry got elected. Damn!!
     
  19. skeetman77

    skeetman77 Member

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    Bottom line is that you have to deliver as many pellets on target as possible, with proper penetration (energy transfer). I have shot every shotgun shell on the market and nothing performs better that Hevi-Shot... The Blackcloud ammo patterns very poorly in every choke that I have tried. Also worth mentioning the choke tubes that are so called "black cloud" specific are no different than regular extended chokes. They are just stamped "BLACK CLOUD"! I have gone through 4 boxes of blind side so far this season and have killed many birds inside 30 yards. The problem that I have found with the blindside is that is opens up very quickly, therefore renders itself useless at longer distances 40+ yards.
    So with all of that said I recommend tight chokes with large pellets, ammo that is in your price range, and let the steel fly.
    Good luck!
     
  20. EuroJoe

    EuroJoe TS Supporters TS Supporters

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    I cut apart a "Black Cloud" snow goose load whil hunting in Sask this year. Strangest shotshell I have ever seen! Over powder wad was VERY deep, looked like sone kind of ball powder. Shot protecter was thick and un-slotted, and the shot was 2 layers. Top was plated, very shiny, and the bottom half was dark with a ring around the pellet, like a Saturn ring of sorts. I didn't shoot any, so I can't attest to their effectiveness
     
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