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I will need to load some trap/skeet 12 ga loads for an up coming shoot this summer for a club that only allows steel shot. I load lead rounds now and I am looking for some information on how make this happen. I shoot 7/8 and 1 oz loads and I would like to stay as close as possible to what I shoot now, all my loads are 1200 fps, STS and Nitro hulls with clays, green dot and red dot powders on a meg 9000 press.

Thanks,
Dave
 

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If your going to load steel youll need a slower burning powder. Allient makes a powder called Steel for this. you may want to change you wads to handle the steel shot. Some do some dont. The boys from Naperville GC can help you out.You may also want to change out your bar for the Mec loader.
 

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Alliant steel is a good powder. The main problem is most steel recipies are hi vel. As posted above,Balistic products is probably your best source.
 

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If it's just one or a few shoots; just buy shells. Winchester had a steel load of 7s that is about $7-8/box locally (~$65 per case I think).

First off, all loading presses drop shot by volume, and thus your charge bar won't drop the right weight of steel. So you will have to buy a new charge bar, unless you already have an adjustable charge bar or already have some large charges bars that will throw large amounts of lead.

Then you will likely need steel-specific powders and wads. These wads will be more expensive than normal wads (they are thicker). On a MEC loader, you'll need new a new powder bushing because Alliant Steel powder is going to be a different weight charge than our typical clay target loads. Once you are done with this one shoot this summer, you'll have a lot of steel wads and an odd amount of powder that isn't good for anything else (unless you take up duck hunting).

I am set up to load steel and non-tox, but that's because I do it for waterfowl. But it's not worth it to just do it for one shoot.
 

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"I shoot 7/8 and 1 oz loads and I would like to stay as close as possible to what I shoot now, all my loads are 1200 fps, STS and Nitro hulls with clays, green dot and red dot powders on a meg 9000 press."

Dave, Ballistic products does have some 1200 fps recipes, but you may need to ask for them. Or they might be published in their "Status of Steel" book. You really should call them. I was looking for some slower recipes like yourself and one of the guys there sent me some trap speed recipes they've tested in an email. Of course they have the wads you'll need.

My favorite recipe is a sub 1200 fps load with 1-1/8 oz of #6 steel shot. You can shoot #6 at Naperville, just not for ATA events. The ATA is set on #7 being the largest steel shot you are allowed to use.

I would encourage you to stick to your goal in spite of the popularity of faster loads with steel. The recoil will be there with the speed and if you're going to shoot a decent amount, you will suffer the effects. I see that Jay has sent you a PM. Jay is the master of light loads with steel. I tried 7/8 oz wads once and didn't like the breaks. I'm sorry, but smoke is feedback and the more the better, in my opinion.

Many of the recipes use STS hulls, but you'll need to use a slower powder as suggested above. BPI recipes will tell you what powder you can use and they also sell the shot. In terms of loading steel on a 9000, the main thing you will need is steel shot bars. They're black instead of the red you are used to. You'll need to move your wad rammer tube down further because the cushion in the wads are smaller to allow for more room for the lighter by volume steel. Some guys use a 16 ga rammer tube, but I didn't like that because my shot hung up in the tube once in a while. I went back to a 12 ga tube that is milled down just a small amount so as to not drag the wad back out on the upstroke. I'd give it a try first before changing the tube out because you might find you don't have a problem with the new wads from BPI. Maybe some graphite powder on the tube end or some grinder work will be enough to fix an issue.

There are a few guys who load Steel powder at our club, but the speeds are out of this world.

Buying shells for one shoot is a great idea.

Good luck,

Joe


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