Plated vs. Standard Shot Patterns and Performance

Dear Technoid:

Have you or Roland ever tested nickel plated (electro.) lead mag. shot vs. standard mag. shot as to patterning and performance in general? I’m referencing Lawrence Mag. or equivalent.

Thanks – Stanley

Dear Stanley,

I’ve not tested nickel plated shot vs standard shot as to patterns. The plating doesn’t add hardness, but it does add lubricity so that might help reduce deformation as the shot moves down the barrel. But do be aware of one thing- just because shot is plated doesn’t guarantee that it has a high antimony content. That varies from maker to maker. It also varies with the size of the shot pellet. Smaller pellets need more antimony to hold their shape, while larger pellets can do with less due to their form factor.

What I did notice was that when shooting pheasants, plated shot (copper plated in this case) pulled less feathers. When I recovered standard lead pellets from a bird, they were often clumped with some grey feather down. The plated shot recovered had less clumping, so it should have had better penetration if all other things were equal. Of course, this was just a casual observation- and we all know what those are worth. I’ll leave it up to my betters to do a proper evaluation. All I really care about is getting that phez into the frying pan, one way or another.

Best regards,
Bruce Buck
Shotgun Report’s Technoid

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