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Shot size for Trap and Skeet


usa259
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Yes there a fair amount of difference in the 3 of them. For one shell to do both, I would go with the 8 shot. For trap you really dont need to switch to 7.5 till you get farther back. 9 shot CAN work for trap on the 16 if you are FAST but I wouldnt recommend it. For skeet with a 12 GA 8 and 9 are best for the extra pellets and not being far enough out there that the 7.5s are needed for the energy. That said, 7.5 wouldnt be bad to use for skeet just 8 and 9s are better for it. On the smaller gauges the smaller like the 28 and 41, 9 shot(or even 8.5) works best as it gives you the density you need with less shot charge.

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Number 8 shot would be the best for trap and skeet if only loading one shot size. Typically 7 1/2 shot is used for handicap shooting in trap. In years past 8 1/2 size shot was available and would work well for singles shooting in trap or skeet. I do not know if it is available today.

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I couldn't get the hang of skeet. I like trap, I use 7.5. A chipped bird still counts and I feel the 7.5 works better for me. My grandpa loads his own and likes 7.5 because he can get good breaks with less velocity, so less recoil.

I'm not a great shooter though and since starting pistol only go occasionally. take it for what its worth.

Red

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Hello: What I have found out loading my own shells in 28,20 and 12 is it depends on shot weight and velocity. For skeet and trap shells going 1150-1230fps and 1oz loads I use #7 1/2 shot. For 7/8oz, 3/4 and 5/8 I am using #8 1/2 shot. For 410 I plan on using #9 and pushing the speed up to 1250-1300fps. The old saying if "your on your on" is very true but a couple of extra BB's is nice to have. So if you are buying shells in 12 gauge 1 1/8oz I would just use #8 and the correct choke for the game you are playing. For Skeet cylinder or skeet and modified or improved modified for Trap at 16-23 yard. Sporting clays it depends on the course you are shooting. Thanks, Eric

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My local range owner is a whiz at trap. I think he said he misses like maybe one, 2 tops every 25, for trap and I can't remember for skeet. So take his word for it. In general, 1 1/8" ounch #8 is the happy medium for both if you can pick only a single load.

I went with 1 oz #7.5 but then switched to #8 to 1 1/8 oz. Now it could just be me, but my scores went from 25/50 to 40/50 (on a good day about 37-39 otherwise). He did mention 7.5# can work better on trap on a windy day since the wind affects the large shot less. It was exciting since I went between from like 18-20 to nearly 40 in about 4 months this summer, and I definitey don't have an optimal trap shotgun :D

As for skeet, I have been told ideally to go with 9...if you can find it.

Don't forget to pattern your shotgun on paper with various chokes, at typical distances that you will likely be shooting. This might vary between the brand as well. That was his other advice. Top gun patterns well for me (2 3/4 dram eq). I suspect Gun club is similar, but for the longest time I could find Federal TG for cheaper.

Edited by hceuterpe
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The advantage to the #9 shot for skeet is there is simply more pellets out there to fill the pattern. In the small stuff is 28 and 410 there is just so little weight of shot larger shot like 8s cost you pellets to fill the pattern. The 410 is were the difference in 8vs 9 really matters. For 12GA and 20GA you have enough shot that there really isn't the difference in 8vs 9 as far as filling the pattern is concerned. As for 1oz vs 1 1/8 it's not an issue in skeet as there are a lot that use 1oz for 12 ga and even 20 ga for 12ga events. For trap if your on the 16yard line and don't ride it to the next county 1oz of 8s will get it done. A lot is knowing how the ammo patterns in your gun and knowing what your looking at and what your after. Usually the big misconception is use the loosest choke you can for skeet so the cylinder and negative construction chokes. The guns are gonna pattern best with some choke in them. For skeet bigger isn't always better

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Most serious skeet shooters use no 9, especially in the smallbores. International Skeet has a minimum shot size of 2mm which is a small no 9.

I did best at trap 16 yard and medium handicap with no 8.

I remember when Remington brought out no 8 1/2 with calculations to show it would break a target with the same number of pellet hits as no 8, but more in the shell. Yawn.

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Is there much of a difference between 7.5 vs 8 vs 9?

If you are just looking for a general load,8s are fine for all except long sporting clays shots and long yardage trap.

At skeet in the 12 and 20 I bet most average shooters could not tell the difference between 8s and 9s.If you are on the target right 9s in a 410 will even break a real nice second target at station 4 doubles.

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  • 3 weeks later...

For trap, light (1 1/8 oz) (1145fps or 2 3/4 dram) 8's for 16's. Good the 23 yard line. 1200 fps or 3 dram loads with 7 1/2's for 23-25 yard handicap, again 1 1/8 oz. Handicap (about 1240 fps) 7 1/2 loads, 1 1/8 oz for 26-27 yard. Doubles 1 oz, 2 3/4 dram 8's for 1 shot, 1 1/8 oz, 2 3/4 dram 7 1/2's for second shot.

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  • 6 months later...
  • 1 month later...

I must be the odd duck here because I really don't notice a difference between 7.5 and 8. I shot them for everything. Not saying that wind pellet count etc. is not true but I don't know that you are going to pick up many birds due to just changing shot size. I will admit that when I miss it is because of me not the gear.

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Is there much of a difference between 7.5 vs 8 vs 9?

Yes, size does matter.

Stick with 9's for skeet loads. Quick and simple.

8's or 7 1/2's both can work well for singles and handicap trap, but it depends on your choke. I prefer a tight full choke with Magnum 8 shot rather than 7 1/2's because they pattern better (in my guns) at 30-50 yards.

If you like a more open choke the slightly larger shot may work better for you. You need to pattern your gun and see. 7 1/2's are generally the wise choice for handicap use for 24 yardline +

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When I was shooting a lot of club skeet leagues I found that #9s helped in getting closer or to (occasionally) that magical 100/100 mark more consistently.

I was never a serious trap shooter but either #71/2 or #8 worked about equally well. I'm sure the serious trap shooters have it down to a science and have a stronger opinion as some have already stated.

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I compete at trap. The 7.5 vs 8 debate will go

on forever.

I've shot plenty of both. The biggest thing I learned is stick with 1 1/8oz. In handicap.

Skeet is a # 9 game exclusively. Unless you wanna shoot 8.5 shot.

I think Bender uses 8.5s now. Something about it being difficult to keep antimony content in 9s as consistent because it's so small.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I compete at trap. The 7.5 vs 8 debate will go

on forever.

I've shot plenty of both. The biggest thing I learned is stick with 1 1/8oz. In handicap.

Skeet is a # 9 game exclusively. Unless you wanna shoot 8.5 shot.

I think Bender uses 8.5s now. Something about it being difficult to keep antimony content in 9s as consistent because it's so small.

I agree with 1 1/8 oz, definitely notice a difference there, while have never seen actual result differences between 7.5 or 8 or trap.

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