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Joined: Jun 2008
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Sidelock
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The cheaper end of the guns are already going for a song. I doubt if much decent stuff will go cheaper as there are alternatives being devised for shot use that comply. In Australia they went mad confiscating guns. Here they are just making a lot of guns more expensive to fire. It may of course go the opposite way with people buying up cheap Spanish and Italian doubles, that can already be bought for less than the price of a couple of boxes of Bismuth cartridges, and shooting steel through them until worn out. I've just got an AyA back from having the chokes relieved so as to be o.k. with the standard steel cartridges. We'll have to see how things pan out over the next year or two. I'll switch when I have used up existing stocks of lead ammo. Lagopus.....

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Down here in olde Hampshire it seems to be much the same as in Derbyshire. I have four older side by sides with 2.5" chambers and so cannot fire the 2.75" / 70mm cartridges filled with steel shot. We are told 2.5" steel is being made, but none has arrived in the shops.
Also the left barrels of all of mine are Full choke or almost, so to have that one choke opened out costs £100 / $135 at Teagues.

Bismuth cartridges are staggeringly expensive (quadruple the price) and hard to find. A Scottish shoot day that is booked for November has become non-lead, so I shall have to take my modern gun, a 48 year old Nikko with the barrels the wrong way round.

On our local shoot we eat all that we shoot, so what we use to shoot them with is our problem, but this will change in a year or three.

The recent Gavin Gardiner auction [good guy!] had eleven consecutive lots of classic 12 bore British sidelocks offered for sale with reasonable estimates; only two sold!
I intend to sit tight for the moment and not spend ANY money until life becomes clearer. Europe is also looking at a lead ban so this may be the end of an era - we shall see...

Historic Bore

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It’s my understanding there are a number of shooting grounds and/or driven shoots in the UK that require fiber wads because of objections to plastic wads. Steel shot and fiber wads would not work because the thick plastic wad protects the bore from the inevitable scoring that steel shot inflicts on shotgun bores. Another seeming obstacle. There are trap clubs here in the US that have been forced to use steel shot for ATA trap. They reload and seem to get along fine, but plastic wads are necessary.

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While I don't like the lead ban I have had to be all non-toxic in Washington state for several years on public land, so initially I bought a Benelli Ultralight to shoot steel, but then Kent started making Bismuth "reasonably priced" at around $1.30 per round. Who knows that it will cost after all the supply line issues. A normal day of rough shooting for pheasants means that I'll spend more in diesel than I will in cartridges. For a driven shoot, I have to think that if you can afford to attend one, you can afford Bismuth cartridges. All we have is hope that as demand goes up for non-steel non-toxic alternatives, the prices may fall (although I won't count on it). Remember what steel initially cost? It wasn't cheap either.

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I am sorry to say that this whole Lead issue really angers me.
Our largest shooting association BASC made a statement years ago that it would support the alternatives to Lead shot if it became readily available and was economic to buy . That at the minute is not available BUT BASC seems to be the prime mover in promoting a total Lead ban . It is my understanding that they have forwarded £250,000 to an organisation that promotes the sale of Game meat that has not been shot with Lead ! Forwarded this money without consulting its membership!
Last Friday May 6th we were subjected to a review intending to ban the total use of Lead ammunition within the next five years and earlier if possible.
This review is being administered by HSE Health and Safety Executive which is basically a Government run safety organisation for the employment of people . WHY is it not entrusted to a Shooting Sport organisation? Also it is a lead ban instigated by the EU of which we voted not to be members of so why do we have to follow their example?
I am sorry to say that due to very poor representation by our Shooting Sports Organisations we have been sold out .
Initially it was stated that clay shooting would not be subject to a lead ban and now they have included ALL shooting in a total Lead ban .
What have our National representative clay shooting organisations done ? NOTHING.

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Boxlock
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Eeb: Here in Britain most game shoots ask Guns to use fibre wads, and have done so for years. The four British cartridge makers are trying to introduce 'plastic' wads made out of non-plastics that will bio-degrade over time on the ground, especially when wet. It is too early to say if these will work well enough, or protect the barrels enough.

The review announced last week runs for six months, and then they will need further months to come to any conclusions, with an implementation period following that, so nothing much will change soon.

But it will surely change, not for the better.

HB

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Degradeable plastic has been in use for decades in the vegetable growing business. The raised beds that you see in fields growing vegetables are often covered with the kind that degrades and just goes away in a matter of months. I would think it a short step to make plastic shot cups out of something similar.


May God bless America and those who defend her.
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Sidelock
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Stanton,
Dream on! BASC have had biodegradable wads sitting in a garden at HQ for years exposed to the elements and they are still there today !

Eley do have a wad that is water soluble but it still lingers around as a slimey mess for days after becoming into contact with moisture .
Interestingly enough only yesterday I was made aware that some plastics of the polyurethane type may well contain Lead as a constituent?
Sorry to say that as an avid shooting person I now feel abandoned , up the creek without a paddle.

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Sidelock
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As Salopian and HistoricBore will know we have lots of churches here in Britain (very few attend though) and they just about all have lead covered roofs. I wonder if anyone has ever done a survey as to what happens to all that rainfall (yes it does rain here in Britain) that runs off the roof having been in contact with lead and gets into the drains, then the ditches and then the rivers? Perhaps a five year transition for churches to change the lead to a copper clad roof maybe?

I like to shoot clays with muzzle loaders. I can't afford to stoke them up with Bismuth just to shoot clays.

It wasn't long ago that BASC; British Association for Shooting & Conservation stated quite firmly that their policy was 'No Evidence: No Change' I asked a BASC Official about the evidence and was told that most poisoned birds die out of sight or are eaten by predators. I asked where was the evidence then. That met with silence. Lagopus.....

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eeb Offline
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All that is a crying shame. Sounds like BASC has an agenda that does not include it’s members. Follow the money.

Last edited by eeb; 05/11/22 05:13 PM.
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