Just read the article on the newsfeed about buck shot. I have a lot of experience with buck shot, and one thing I learned is that every barrel has its own preference, and you need to pattern with all the brands and shot size, different brands pattern differently even with the same shot size. Case in point I bought a slug barrel, smooth bore 18.5 inches long and it only liked Remington 1 oz slugs, then the group I hunted with decided no slugs during organized hunts. I had fallen in love with the short barrel and wanted to keep using it but everyone told me it would not pattern buck shot. Our LGS knew about how different barrels liked different loads and had open boxes of all the different rounds they had, so I went and bought 1 round of every one they had and went to my range. Well the short barrel did as expected and at 20 yards I could cover the barn door, then the last round I tried was 000 buck. It was the last I tried because I never saw a barrel that could pattern with it. I was shocked, at 20 yards it had an 8 inch pattern, stepped back to 40 yards and I could put every pellet into the target. I owned a dream barrel, one that shot both slugs and buck shot. So what I’m getting at is pattern your guns and see what they like. This is what my hunting shotgun looks like now, and yes it’s loaded with 000 buck.



Yes, gotta pattern your shotgun with the shot you plan to use.

They are kind of notoriously variable, similar to .22lr rifles and which round they like


Where is a good source of 00 buck for reload :us:


I reload shotgun alot but never loaded buckshot but I have seen bags of it at my LGS.


Hornady Lead Shot 00 Buckshot 5 lb Box (midwayusa.com)


Thanks will check them out


Very true, my three shotguns all shoot different patterns…,Mossberg 500, Mossberg 590S Tactical, and my Kel-Tek KSG. All can shoot slugs…

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Nice piece of hardware.

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Nice, but how many come in a 5 lb box? Seems 00 buck with the weight wouldn’t be that much or is it?

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Rough Math… 9 pellets to the ounce. 9x16=144. 144x5=720. :slightly_smiling_face:

So, Ive seen where you can get 250 rounds for the lowest price was $79…the 5lbs would be better then I take it??

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So you get 720 rounds :thinking:

No. You get 720 single buckshot, if you reload you will get enough for 80 rounds. :slightly_smiling_face:


Pretty sure Bruce was referring to just a 5 pound box of the lead pellets. That would not include the weight of the shells, powder etc.

I just weighed a 50 shell box of federal flight control 8 pellet 00 Buck. It came out to 4.6 pounds on my bathroom scale. Not sure how accurate it is with such low weights.

Any way you weigh it buckshot shells are heavy. Carrying around my loaded shotgun with an extra 6 buck and 6 slugs in the two shell cards is a good workout.


Interesting post. New/amateur hunter here. When I used shotgun for the first time, there was so much new for me to learn, and was surprised how much there is to learn about “chokes” sizes.

And the dangers of using the wrong shotgun ammo with the wrong choke.

I could be wrong, but one outline I read was for hunting accuracy:

Bird shot shell (smallest pellets) - use Full choke size for tighter groupings, smaller gam, closer range.

Buck Shot (medium/large sides pellets) - use Modified choke, buck shot in the past was considered good for deer, hence “Buck”, at mid to short range per se.

Slugs (one largest size wad or bullet) - use Cylinder size choke. Which I think is wider size choke, to allow for the large size of the wad or ammo.

I got a couple of shotguns, for different wild game hunt, but one of my shotguns already came with a fixed and full choke, so I am careful to only use bird shot in that one.

But thankfully one of my other shot guns allows for me to actually change the chokes out, which is nice. For my needs, I just need three different choke sizes for that firearm.

But what I noticed was that in the self defense (SD) firearm subcategory, that some homes use shot gun as their weapon of choice. Again God Forbid.

I once saw a vid of comedian Dave Chappell sum up his theory on shotgun home SD, though of course, fictional with comedy:

If he were to use shotgun in SD, given it can be preloaded with three or more rounds, such as a pump or semi:

His first round coming out, meaning last loaded in, is bird shot; then buck, the maybe slug. IDK.

I think his premise, is the Bird shot is less lethal, but still defensive; Then Buck, very dangerous, more than Buck, and very lethal; Then Slug, the most dangerous I believe. His reasoning was to start out small, escalating to big, then biggest, per se.

Interesting in that in a home, you have your own family to think about in risking 'friendly fire." Of course, shot gun is not everyone’s first go to.

But then I wondered, is it safe for the user/shooter, choke, and firearm.

Please chime in here, but I thought that a Cylinder choke, though not ideal for all hunting and not ideal for all ammo rounds, I wonder if Cylinder is the way to go for home SD, in that it is safe to use Bird, Buck, and Slug. You will not get tight groupings on the Bird or Buck, but then again, you are not hunting, it’s just SD, and “if” only the first and second SD shots are not slug, then Cylinder choke could be a way to go to EDC in the home if using shot gun as SD.

If one chooses and is able. IDK.

But to me, interesting to learns all the ins and outs.

Good topic.

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Aaah, makes sense. Duh

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I wouldn’t take home defense advice from a comedian:)

I am relatively new to shotguns myself so take this advice (based on my research and talking with folks with a fair amount of shotgun experience) for what it is worth:

Most experts don’t recommend birdshot because it will not penetrate deep enough to stop a determined threat though some people recommend heavy bird shot like #2 or BB if you live in an apartment with thin walls and have to worry about missed shots passing through those walls.

#4 buckshot sometimes does and sometimes doesn’t meet the FBI minimum penetration standards depending on the load and the shotgun but is a little less likely to go through several walls than 00 buckshot. #1 Buckshot may be the best compromise between acceptable penetration and minimizing over penetration but there are not many #1 loads available especially those designed specifically for self defense.

Every shotgun, choke and shell combo pattern differently so you have to do your own tests for the various ranges you are going to shoot at to see what will work for you. Open or improved cylinder chokes are the most recomended for buckshot and slug self defense but you have to test your own shotgun choke patterns to confirm. Slugs will go through a lot of walls very easily but are less likely to deflect off of 2x4s and go in random directions than buckshot.

A .223/5.56 rifle with the proper ammo may be the better choice for many people due to lower recoil and less chance of passing through walls than buck or slugs. But for single shot stopping power 00 or #1 buck is hard to beat at ranges under 20 yards.


Also be aware that some buckshots like Federal Flight control and Hornady Critical Defense use special wads that actually get tighter patterns with an open or improved cylinder choke than with a tighter choke that can mess with how the wad works. And even regular buckshot with normal wads can perform worse with tighter chokes because the soft lead pellets can deform in the tighter chokes resulting in more flyers.

Patterning with a shotgun is key to making sure you are getting tight effective patterns and minimizing the chances of stray pellets going places you don’t want them to.


The shotgun I have for HD is my Mossberg 590S Tactical shoots three round sizes, 1 3/4, 2 3/4, and 3". I would use 00 buck for home defense myself. Basically its like shooting a 9mm with 9 rounds coming out. (:smile:

There is tons of info on shotguns.

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