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Minnie ball Vs Foster Slug 12 ga.

  • Apples and oranges

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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I have often wondered what would be the difference between a Foster Slug from 12 gauge vs period .58 Minnie Ball. Does anyone know the Ballistics of the Minnie Ball? FPS and energy?
 

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I get best accuracy from my 58 cal is with a charge of FFG behind a 530 gr. Minnie (99.9% lead). this gives muzzle velocity of 1050 fps and an energy of 1,300 ft lbs.

The 12 ga factory can give 1800 fps for 1-oz. (437.5 grain) slugs, for an energy of over 3,100 ft-lbs.

In wildlife areas where either are allowed and I hunt deer; for me the Minnie is considerably more accurate than either the sabot or foster. If shooting at a lion or large bear at 20 yards, I'd probably use the shorter barrel 12 ga slug gun.
 

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Seems in the last 20 years, Civil War historians have come to the conclusion (after 150 years) that the Minnie ball was the reason for the CW injuries. I've got 5 pick-up CW minnies, not fired and a Williams Clean Bullet from CW. Interesting stuff to contemplate.

The Minnies loaded faster than the patched ball, But the velocity and accuracy was considerably better with a well patched round ball. RB can be loaded faster, while the soft skirt of the minnie ball limits the pressure than can be loaded. If pressures get to high on a minnie ball, the skirt ruptures at exiting the muzzle and makes the round unstable and super poor accuracy results.

The heavy, slow moving soft/pure lead minnie balls really did cut and fracture anything it hit. I think the present day US rounds that are light and fast, made to be unstable and destroy flesh (non-convention compliant) do less damage to troops.

Sad thing the Civil War...might say disgraceful!


Sorry for the run on...I'm a civil War historian.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Capturing the spin

If the Minnie Ball actually engaged the barrel threads making it spin, why can't we make a Foster Slug fired from a threaded barrel, making it spin and not use Sabot slugs?
 

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Tests done 10 years ago showed the Foster slug was the most accurate out of rifled shotgun barrels, better than the 8+ brands of sabot tested.

But, we all know that if sabots cost more, and the gun rag writers, paid by sabot ads; then they must be better.

My range experience seems to be that rifled shotgun guys use scopes. And they are comparing their accuracy to no sight smooth bore shotguns! I shoot a scoped 20 ga single smooth bore , with Foster slugs it seems to shoot about the same as the guys at the range sighting in the expensive rifled sabot shooters.

The recovered 58 Minnies I have shot, all show rifling. As said, must be all lead, no alloy, to upset on firing and take rifling.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
What would be the equivalent size of a 12 gauge 3" Mag Foster Slug vs a Minnie ball. What is the closest size of a Minnie ball to a Foster slug of the before mentioned?
 

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I've been shooting a foster style slug from my 20 gauge, I bought 1,000 of these in Italy and they are pretty accurate slug they are 1and1/8oz and chronograph at 1620fps and use what they call the Gordon system wad their lead is also harder than American foster style slug
s, on the shell it says Big Game Golandi. I haven't ever seen them for sale here in the states. I now that they sure do work good on hogs out to around 75 yards. These slugs are for smooth bores and they are so accurate out to around 75 yards that I had a scope on my pump and it would put all 6 shots into a 6" circle, I took the scope off so I could get on target a lot faster. They are a different looking slug and harder, the Gordon system wad has a finger that sticks up inside the slug and force's it to expand against the barrel when fired ,it works great also they are heavier, harder and faster than American made foster style slugs . I was shooting federal tribal slugs until I shot these Italian big game slugs.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
What would be the equivalent size of a 12 gauge 3" Mag Foster Slug vs a Minnie ball. What is the closest size of a Minnie ball to a Foster slug of the before mentioned?
What I was looking for in the way of comparison from the 12 ga slug size as opposed to what size Minnie ball size close as possible. I want to shoot as close as possible a Minnie Ball Musket round from a shotgun shell in a riflied barrel.
Size comparison from closest size from Minnie ball to slug size in diameter.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Foster Slugs vs Minnie ball vs 72 or .69

What would happen if I fired a .69 or .72 Minnie Ball through a rifled Shotgun Barrel?
 

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As said the minnie base is conically hollow, skirt. the metal upsets and expands to take the rifling of the rifled barrel.

One could use the same principle in a RIFLED shotgun barrel. Since the pressures/forces are greater the skirt on such a minnie/shotgun slug would need to be bigger/thicker/stronger. And the slug would need to be soft enough to properly expand.

That given, I'd think a progressive or gain twist barrel would let the slug spin slowly at first, then accelerate its rotational velocity to avoid shearing off the newly cut threads on the slug.

Just some thoughts over morning coffee!

the thoughts are similar to what a sabot should do.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
What if we used the same wadding from the shotgun shell to house the Minie ball? At any rate were going to a well known YouTuber to test this.
All that is left is finding someone who will melt some lead into the.59 and or the .72 anyone want to help? or get us in touch to someone who will?
 

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you can not use a a regular shotgun wad. shotgun wads have a plastic collar which would be between the minnie ball and the barrel.

You could cut the collar off, using just the base of the wad underneath the Minnie.

I don't know of any commercial .59 or .72 Minnie molds, so casting such is going to be difficult. You might get someone to machine some special. I've never machined lead on a lathe!
 

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You can buy .69 or .72 cal lead balls at October Country Muzzle loading.com $12 for 20 I don't think that you will find a .Minnie Ball that big nowadays. But I have heard of people using a .69cal lead ball in a 12 gauge. Just empty a 2 3/4" nitro express and replace the shot with the ball. I've heard that they are pretty accurate out to around 35 to 50 yards and puts hogs down with authority.
 

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You might want to consider the design parameters of a Minnie ball.

It is designed to be undersized so it loads easily from a muzzle loader...from the front not the breech. Muzzleloaders whether smooth bore or rifled are uniform in diameter....no choke at muzzle. The skirt is made, primarily, to seal the undersized bullet in the bore, and secondarily to contact the rifling. A shotgun wad would do the sealing thing in a shell load. BUT the shotgun wad will also seal the high pressure from contacting the cone shaped hollow in the Minnie. It is the gas pressure on this cone shaped skirt that expands the Minnie into sealing/rotating.
 
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