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Steel shot thru an old gun

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 Posted 10/21/2013 6:59:29 AM

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I have a remington 1100 that i bought 30+ years ago. Can you shoot steel shot thru it without damaging the barrel? Ive heard you cant, and ive heard you can. It seems to me that the wad would protect the barrel, but hey, im new to this community. Any direction here would be helpful.
Post #774410
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 Posted 10/21/2013 6:33:10 PM

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Yote, Im not a gunsmith, but this is my take on the issue.

Your shot cup should keep the majority of steel from the barrel, however this is not a guarantee.  Because of this most shotshell boxes say right on the bottom, a generic warning that if your not sure, dont shoot it.  Most of the reason is the damage that happens to the forcing cone when the shot goes off.  You can google images of forcing cones damaged by steel shot.

You also have to consider the chamber pressures.  With current loads leaning towards faster is better many shells have jacked up the juice and lowered the load weight to achieve lightning fast shot loads.  Remington's Hypersonic is a prime example.  My own Shotgun is fairly new at less than 5 years old and it even says not to shoot any loads faster than 1500fps.  That rules out a lot of the newer shells and my  gun isnt 30 years old.

I would suggest calling Remington Arms directly and get your advice straight from the manufacturer.
1-800-243-9700 for parts and service.  Just a suggestion.


Post #774421
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 Posted 10/21/2013 7:46:21 PM

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Yes, check with Remington and get the straight scoop.  I'm betting they'll tell you that you'll be fine with steel smaller than BB sized and sure enough if it is a modified or more open choke you will be fine.

Chamber pressure and barrel scoring shouldn't be a problem with modern steel shot ammo.  SAAMI voluntary standards for Max Average Pressure haven't changed, except that the 12ga 3 1/2" shell is higher MAP than 12ga 3" shells.  And, wads in modern manufatured steel loads should uncompass all the pellets to prevent bore contact.

The only real issue with some large (generally BB or larger) steel pellet loads, high velocity steel loads, or heavy payload steel ammo is the higher radial pressure these loads can have as the ejecta travels down the barrel and hits the choke constriction where if the barrel or choke tube can't handle the pressure then you can get a slight ring-bulge in the barrel just ahead of the choke constriction or a swelling of the choke tube that will make it difficult to remove.

Good luck.

Edited: 10/21/2013 9:41:35 PM by Joe Hunter
Post #774428
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 Posted 11/4/2013 5:20:28 PM

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A 30 year old gun was made after steel shot was required for waterfowl I had a hunting buddy that used a 1100 3" mag with steel. The only thing they said when steel came out was to shoot all steel with a choke no tighter them Modified (.710 or larger). so all of the guys I hunted with got new barrels with fixed Mod choke. to this day I will not shoot steel any tighter than Mod. As far as speed goes pattern your gun to see what it will do my 870s would have the pattern blow out when I got over 1450fps it had holes that a Teal could go through. 

the old hunter
Post #774614
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 Posted 11/5/2013 9:13:46 AM

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I think heavy shot makes a shell for old guns that cant shoot nontoxic and pricey.
Post #774628
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 Posted 11/7/2013 3:26:23 PM

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My gun is a fixed choke barrel, full choke.
Post #774663
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 Posted 11/9/2013 7:40:33 PM

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I have several old 1100's with fixed chokes.  When I started duck hunting, I had a gunsmith advise me to replace the fixed choke barrel with a new rem choke barrel and used steel choke tubes.  He told me that over time, the steel shot could damage the barrel.  I have seen new barrels at Cabelas for under $200.  I decided to save the old 1100's for other hunting and got a new 870 that can handle shells up to a three and a half.  It didn't cost that much more and I will save up for a new auto loader.
Post #774687
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 Posted 11/14/2013 10:17:57 AM

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I have a 1963 Remington Model 1100 that was the first one to hit Dallas, TX.  It came with a modified barrel.  As others have stated, newer rounds have much higher pressures than what was available back when the gun was introduced.  That alone precludes me from dropping any of the new rounds in it.  Due to the age of the gun, the low serial number, the modified barrel and the sentimental value (was my fathers gun that he gave to me), about the only hunting I will do with this gun is an occasional dove hunt. 

There was no way that I was going to take this gun out to where we hunt as we hunt on coastal island sloughs and I would not take a chance with it against the salty air conditions.  Therefore, I went and bought a Benelli SuperNova for about $550 just for duck hunting.  That way I get to keep a heirloom and have a newer gun that I can take out without any worries.

Just my two cents worth.
Post #774755
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