In times of need we may take more chances than we normally would.

The cut shotgun shell is certainly one of those field improvised loads.

Here is a cautionary look at what the cut shotgun shell “slug” is all about.

In the times of old shotgun slugs might not have been affordable or even attainable during the Depression or other times of strife. When meat needed to be on the table a standard shotgun shell with shot could be quickly made into a close range big game harvester. It could also see double duty as a homestead protector.

Making a cut or “ringed” shotshell is easy. Take a regular birdshot load and score it all the way around the shell with a knife in the wad area. Make sure you leave just enough of a connection so the whole thing doesn’t fall apart. When you fire it the whole front of the shotshell, wad, case and shot, blast out of the barrel usually in a single projectile. Sounds cool right? In a pinch, it might mean the difference between starvation and big game on the table (of course check game laws first unless that is now history…).

YouTuber 27Turo shows us how making a cut shell is done and what happens when they are fired.

Well, in my younger years I tried some for myself. Yes they did work and a targeted old dead tree looked quite impressive with plastic shell, wad and shot all piled in a single hole. The big danger is that big chunk of oversized projectile must now launch through an undersized barrel. The squeeze is big time real and pressures could indeed spike making this a dangerous practice for you and shotgun both. If you are going to use the cut shell principle reserve it for emergencies and out of the most open choked bore you can find. Remember a cylinder bore will not have as much pressure as pushing that out of a tighter choke. Your best bet is to remember this trick just in case but stock up instead on shotgun slugs. Your shotgun and possibly your health will thank you.

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