I know that this is not the answer to your question about Blue Duster, but until my distributor quit handling the green duster wads and went to downrange the only wad I ever used was the green duster. I had no problems with them what-so-ever.
I cannot speak on Downrange as I never used them. When I started using Dusters (blue or green) years ago ALL of my plastic fouling in the barrels and chokes stopped that I was having with the Claybusters. Also the Dusters go thru the loaded really smooth and slick, much more quiet also..............Bryan
Being a fan of the AA-style, I've used the AA, WT12, Blue/Green Dusters and Claybuster Wads... the Blue/Green Dusters seem the "slickest" of the bunch and the Blue/Green Duster petals seem less deformed out of the bags.
If you have the opportunity to buy Dusters at a realy good price - you will not be disappointed... but should you be, you will not have any problem turning them around to someone else!
Biggest difference is service when you run into a problem. About four or five yesra ago, Duster Wads had a "problem" with the raw material they were using. It caused wads to fracture at low temps starting around 50 degrees. Many bloopers and picking up broken wads to figure out the problem, I then called the factory. They were not interested in the least and I was basically stuck with several cases of "Hot Weather" Wads I had no faith in. It affected the Blues and the Greens. I asked for a replacement and was told they won't do that. Customer service at Downrange is a little different. You can call for advice and if you have a problem, they will work with you.
To sum it up. Dusters are OK as long as you get a batch that was made right. I've never had a real issue with Downrange wads. Performance is as expected with Downrange, even under cold conditions.
There were many threads on this forum when it was happening. I was not the only one to experience the issue.
I have to think the ownership of Dusters must have changed . I had an issue with them on the Green Dusters- "ONE" issue in several casses and they were more than happy to correct it and VERY generous in thier customer service to me . This occurred only a few weeks ago .
Blue Dusters work fine, with one exception for me. They did not handle cold weather and my .750 bore Kolar. (lots of bloopers) Whereas the Downrange XL's performed just fine. So, I have a case plus of the Dusters to use in warm weather only.........Clyde Courtwright
I also ran into a batch of 28ga dusters that would shred upon firing, no matter what the temp. Didn't seem to effect performance all that much, but it was disconcerting to say the least to see 3 or 4 wad "pieces" flying in the air after I pulled the trigger.
My only local source for dusters was gander mtn, who back when I was buying them was priced fairly competitively, however now the dusters at gander are priced higher than I can get OEM wads from my regular supplier, so its a no brainer. Downrange also makes great wads, unfortunately they don't make any wads suitable for any of the loads I'm currently shooting.
I have used 1oz and 1 1/8oz configurations in both Downrange and Duster wads. Both performed fine but I settled on the Dusters and currently use both the Green and Blue Dusters. I got caught up in the fiasco regarding the Duster wads that were fracturing and they replaced a case of each Blue and Green Dusters for me. I have no complaint about their customer service.
Quality of product, customer service ......No doubt it's DownRange. Have a question, call Kevin at DR and he'll be more than helpful. Their wads also are of the slickest plastic, leaving no residue and they are tested for pressures, velocities and temperatures in their own ballistics lab. Good product, good people.
I've been using Blue Dusters for the past 5-7 years for my handicap load as well as #2 on Doubles. I really like the wad. Ran out over the Winter, and wasn't willing to pay the shipping price for a mail order (and they were not available locally). Tried a couple thousand Down Range XL118 (I think)...the blue AA clones. Slightly different construction in the crunmple zone from the Dusters, maybe a bit slicker, they look to be a bit different in shot cup height as well. While I haven't had the chance to pattern them yet, they seem to be very similar in performance.
Not sure which wad I will buy this June when I make the run to Eleysburg for the PA State shoot and my annual component stock up. I will say the DR wads are getting alot of good comments from what I have seen.
I just purchased a case of DownRange XL-118. I have used them before and have had good luck with them Whenever I have a question, Kevin answers in a matter of hours. I had a question for the Blue Duster manufacturer. It took them 4 days to answer! By the time I got their email, I had placed my order for the Downrange wads with Gamaliel. I wanted to try the Blue Dusters, but have now decided to stay with DownRange due to their customer service. Ed