Lead shot technical advice

MIKE GEORGE

Antimony is a silvery-white metal – in its pure state, it’s hard and brittle.

It is lighter than lead, and has a higher melting point.

Alloyed with lead in small quantities, it has a considerable hardening effect – and hard shot has good ballistic performance because it is not easily distorted out of spherical by firing pressures.

If you look at Charles’s

review of partridge cartridges
, you will see that the antimony content in all the cartridges tested was 3%.

That’s about right for game cartridges. The antimony content of competition shot is often a bit higher, but rarely more than 5%.

Shotgun shot is not the only use for antimony/lead alloys – the ‘lead’ plates in your car battery are made of the same stuff too.