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Best cartridges for clays?

  • 29-08-2020 10:25am
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 310 ✭✭ no_4


    As a new clay shooter I’ve tried a lot of cartridges in my 12 g, normally 28g, #7.5, 8s in eley, gamebore, fiocchi, armusa, and I patterned a lot of them at 30 meters,
    I have to say I don’t see much difference in the results at clay range tbh, and I definitely don’t think some of the more expensive brands are any better than the basic 24/28 g Olympic blues for clay shooting
    I’ve also opened a few and was surprised to see some dearer carts at 10-12€ showing very out of round shot compared to the basic 6.50 box?
    What are your go to cartridges for clays?
    Maybe for longer ranged hunting the higher cost carts are better?


Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 473 ✭✭ The pigeon man


    no_4 wrote: »
    As a new clay shooter I’ve tried a lot of cartridges in my 12 g, normally 28g, #7.5, 8s in eley, gamebore, fiocchi, armusa, and I patterned a lot of them at 30 meters,
    I have to say I don’t see much difference in the results at clay range tbh, and I definitely don’t think some of the more expensive brands are any better than the basic 24/28 g Olympic blues for clay shooting
    I’ve also opened a few and was surprised to see some dearer carts at 10-12€ showing very out of round shot compared to the basic 6.50 box?
    What are your go to cartridges for clays?
    Maybe for longer ranged hunting the higher cost carts are better?

    I love a cartridge discussion

    I have dismantled many cartridges and I have found that the eley Olympic blues have some of the most spherical, uniform and well polished shot. Recoil wise I think they're a little thumpy but this can be reduced by using 24g shells. I used these shells for years and they were always flawless. Currently these are about €60 a slab.

    Fiocchi TT ones. I've had a bad experience with these. One batch had hard primers so I never went back to them. They're probably grand now but I have no reason to go back to them when the Olympic blues have been flawless

    Fiocchi fblack. I'm shooting these now. Currently paying €65 a slab. I think they're good but I'm not sure if they're really any better than the Olympic blues. Breaks seem to be good. I've been told the wad makes them pattern tight. A reasonably smooth cartridge in the shoulder.

    I'm thinking now that I may move to 24g cartridges instead of 28g. I've never had trouble with recoil but less recoil would lead to quicker target acquisition on second bird.

    As for game cartridges, they're usually more expensive. Probably because they contain more lead and powder and the manufacturer is extracting the consumer surplus. If you're shooting big birds at long range you'll need heavy cartridges.

    For walked up game I like a gambore black gold in 32g #6 (it's actually size 5# English,so one larger than you think). For the most extreme birds something like black gold 36g #4 will pull them from the sky. You don't really want to be using those unless you have to, because they're sledgehammers in the shoulder.

    For cheap shooting you can use clay cartridges with tight chokes for shooting pigeons and crows. I've also heard great reviews of the rc sipe cartridges. They're cheap aswell.

    I hope this helps.


  • Registered Users Posts: 310 ✭✭ no_4


    Agree totally about the eley 28g blues, pattern well and the best uniformity I’ve tested too
    Also the 24 g must be very popular as my local shop is always sold out of them!
    I love a cartridge discussion

    I have dismantled many cartridges and I have found that the eley Olympic blues have some of the most spherical, uniform and well polished shot. Recoil wise I think they're a little thumpy but this can be reduced by using 24g shells. I used these shells for years and they were always flawless. Currently these are about €60 a slab.

    Fiocchi TT ones. I've had a bad experience with these. One batch had hard primers so I never went back to them. They're probably grand now but I have no reason to go back to them when the Olympic blues have been flawless

    Fiocchi fblack. I'm shooting these now. Currently paying €65 a slab. I think they're good but I'm not sure if they're really any better than the Olympic blues. Breaks seem to be good. I've been told the wad makes them pattern tight. A reasonably smooth cartridge in the shoulder.

    I'm thinking now that I may move to 24g cartridges instead of 28g. I've never had trouble with recoil but less recoil would lead to quicker target acquisition on second bird.

    As for game cartridges, they're usually more expensive. Probably because they contain more lead and powder and the manufacturer is extracting the consumer surplus. If you're shooting big birds at long range you'll need heavy cartridges.

    For walked up game I like a gambore black gold in 32g #6 (it's actually size 5# English,so one larger than you think). For the most extreme birds something like black gold 36g #4 will pull them from the sky. You don't really want to be using those unless you have to, because they're sledgehammers in the shoulder.

    For cheap shooting you can use clay cartridges with tight chokes for shooting pigeons and crows. I've also heard great reviews of the rc sipe cartridges. They're cheap aswell.

    I hope this helps.


  • Registered Users Posts: 991 ✭✭✭ Gorgeousgeorge


    Anything I can get that doesn't hammer my pocket. I do like the clever t2 at the moment. Previously shot everything from fiocchi to gamebore to gp. And guess what let all the cartridges down? Me!


  • Registered Users Posts: 310 ✭✭ no_4


    Yes I think there’s a lot of marketing and hype versus real performance gains at typical clay ranges at least
    I’m going to stick with my blues and superbs for now and shoot twice as many of the more expensive cartridges!
    Anything I can get that doesn't hammer my pocket. I do like the clever t2 at the moment. Previously shot everything from fiocchi to gamebore to gp. And guess what let all the cartridges down? Me!


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,772 ✭✭✭ meathstevie


    Unless you’re shooting at Mr Digweed’s level whatever breaks clays and doesn’t break the bank.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 225 ✭✭ paulireland


    All good info for me.I am awaiting my cert for first gun and was thinking of 24g 7.5 to break me in gently with no big thump


  • Registered Users Posts: 991 ✭✭✭ Gorgeousgeorge


    All good info for me.I am awaiting my cert for first gun and was thinking of 24g 7.5 to break me in gently with no big thump

    Won't go wrong with 24g. Bought a heap of them eley Amber in 21g before got them cheap off the local rfd and by god ya swear you were shooting a spud gun.


  • Registered Users Posts: 310 ✭✭ no_4


    I’m in similar situation, mine was held up for a few months extra with COVID, hopefully you won’t have same delays
    My local shop is almost always sold out of 24 g clay loads so obviously a lot of people using them
    You really would not want to be shooting 4 rounds of clays with 34-36 gram loads

    All good info for me.I am awaiting my cert for first gun and was thinking of 24g 7.5 to break me in gently with no big thump


  • Registered Users Posts: 225 ✭✭ paulireland


    Yes it has been a journey so far.Had to wait for ages to get gun Sn as it was coming via UK dealer from manufacturer to local RFD.Put in application on 1st August.Got call around a week later from local FO with a couple of questions who was then sending it on.So about a month now.All being well it could be soon now :)


  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 27,534 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Cass


    I started off with Eley Olympic Blues and they done well so stuck with them. Occasionally i'd be short and borrow some from another guy which was the only variation i got form what i was used to. Most done the same job, but i remember, and this is some time back, i bought a couple of boxes of GBs (orange ones) and they were muck in every sense. Even with a clean hit i'd break the clay not dust it.

    I moved onto Eley Superbs simply because my local RFD had not Blues in stock and found them to be a much better cartridge. Not sure if it was a mental thing (what with them being more expensive hence thinking they were better) but they dusted every clay regardless of hit. Now they are more expensive. Currently running around €75 to €80 per slab (250) although i haven't shot clays competitively for some time so the last time i bought a slab of each the blues were €45 and the Superb €60.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,280 ✭✭✭ tudderone


    Any of these shells suitable for short 2 1/2 inch chambers ? Its rare i shoot clays, but when i do using eley grand prix or the like can get expensive.


  • Registered Users Posts: 991 ✭✭✭ Gorgeousgeorge


    tudderone wrote: »
    Any of these shells suitable for short 2 1/2 inch chambers ? Its rare i shoot clays, but when i do using eley grand prix or the like can get expensive.

    Na but I believe fiocchi and rc do 28g clay loads in the 2.5 chamber. Niall in lakelands be the man to ask or for eley ardee shooting


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,168 ✭✭✭ Rosahane


    tudderone wrote: »
    Any of these shells suitable for short 2 1/2 inch chambers ? Its rare i shoot clays, but when i do using eley grand prix or the like can get expensive.

    I haven't seen any true 2 1/2 (65mm) clay cartridges. Neither Eley, Lyalvale or Gamebore appear to do a dedicated Clay cartridge in 65mm. Eley claim that their 67mm cartridges are 2 1/2 inch but they are not. I had problems with them game shooting and when I patterned them they were dreadful - nothing like the pattern from their old true 2 1/2 Grand Prix and Impax. I think that the cartridge case wasn't opening fully in my 95 year old gun and thus screwing up the patterns.

    I started using Gamebore Regal cartridges which are 65mm and find them brilliant and throw a superb pattern. You might be able to get them in 28 gramme No 8 which would be good if somewhat expensive clay cartridges. Lyalvale also do true 2 1/2 cartridges.

    It might be worthwhile talking to your dealer and see at what price he could get a couple of thousand for you.


  • Registered Users Posts: 310 ✭✭ no_4


    That’s my experience too, prices are up a lot. my local shop has a slab of 28 g blues for 63 with a discount and superbs for 70

    Cass wrote: »
    I started off with Eley Olympic Blues and they done well so stuck with them. Occasionally i'd be short and borrow some from another guy which was the only variation i got form what i was used to. Most done the same job, but i remember, and this is some time back, i bought a couple of boxes of GBs (orange ones) and they were muck in every sense. Even with a clean hit i'd break the clay not dust it.

    I moved onto Eley Superbs simply because my local RFD had not Blues in stock and found them to be a much better cartridge. Not sure if it was a mental thing (what with them being more expensive hence thinking they were better) but they dusted every clay regardless of hit. Now they are more expensive. Currently running around €75 to €80 per slab (250) although i haven't shot clays competitively for some time so the last time i bought a slab of each the blues were €45 and the Superb €60.


  • Registered Users Posts: 310 ✭✭ no_4


    I think Lakeland and Ardee sports do those but they are expensive
    tudderone wrote: »
    Any of these shells suitable for short 2 1/2 inch chambers ? Its rare i shoot clays, but when i do using eley grand prix or the like can get expensive.


  • Registered Users Posts: 233 ✭✭ raymo19


    I used a slab of Lyalvale power red 27g recently and was very impressed. Not sure on the price.
    One of the clubs in North Dublin was selling Tunet 28g for 50 euro a slab and I found them a really nice shell to shoot. They were replaced by another low priced shell but not as nice to shoot.

    I really miss those Tunet shells. Great performance for a decent price.


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,575 ✭✭✭ ZiabR


    I have shot many cartridges over the last few years. All 28g 7.5 loads but various brands.

    Caledonian or (Mules, as i call them) was what I started on. I think you need to be from Scotland to have the muscle to use them. They kick like a Mule.

    Moved to the Cheddite Range and shot these for 2 years

    Cheddite T2 Universal (Ok budget cartridge)
    Cheddite T3 Smart Strike (One of the better reasonably priced cartridges on the market, shot alot of these)
    Cheddite 2016 (Little difference over the T3)
    Cheddite T4 Oro (Very good cartridge but expensive)

    Then about a year ago I moved to Eley, shooting Olympic Blues and Superb.

    The Superb and very good but for my shooting I think they are a little pricey so I settled on the Olymipic Blues and I have to say for the price these are a very good cartridge. Pattern very well and are a fast enough load.

    Cant see myself changing from them.


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