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Latest shotgun cartridges!

Latest shotgun cartridges!

First up is a revamp of Gamebore’s popular White Gold competition shell. The change is not to be confused with the White Gold XLR range which doesn’t deliver the same high performance as the original – and which is soon to become obsolete anyway!

Gamebore is currently having a bit of a re-brand and the XLR is about to bite the dust as part of the process.

The makers plan to replace it with a new shell delivering similar performance but it will be cheaper – sorry, better value!

The reason for all this is to avoid confusion between the two White Gold brands. So from now on, if it’s White Gold you ask for, it will be the Original; but packed in new cartons and called White Gold Champions Choice.

Why the same spec? Well, probably because it’s what umpteen times World Champion Mr Digweed uses and I guess he doesn’t want anything to change in case it upsets his winning streak.

Mind you, having shot with him, my guess is it probably wouldn’t matter a jot what he used. Anyway, he’s the Champion and it’s his Choice.

Gamebore White Gold Champions Choice 12-bore

Load: 28gm
Case Length: 70mm
Wad: Plastic or Fibre
Shot Sizes: 7.1/2 & 8
Powder: B & P
Muzzle Velocity: 1450 fps
Price: £206 plastic; £210 fibre

The range of 20-bore cartridges carrying a 21 gm shot load is now extensive because the lighter recoil makes them popular with youngsters, ladies, instructors and people taking part in simulated game days.

Express have long loaded one in a plastic wad (which rightly won an award at the IPC Shooting Industry Awards for Best Clay Cartridge) but they’ve now added a fibre version – essential these days with more grounds insisting on them.

This cartridge is a real sweetie thanks to the use of a smooth burning, progressive, Vectan powder that’s light on recoil but high on performance.


None really but with all the competition selling at under £200 per 1,000, this offering looks a tad expensive to me at around £213. The equivalent load from Gamebore is £20 less, Eley £18 less and Hull £16 less.

Express Super Twenty 20-bore

Load: 21gm
Case Length: 65mm
Wad: Fibre
Shot Size: 7.1/2
Powder: Vectan
Muzzle Velocity: 1350 fps
Price: £213

This maker has a long history of innovation and it was they who started the recent price war with a new product called Super Fast.

This cartridge – loaded in a 67mm case and no frills packaging with a 27gm shot load for clays and 29gms as a pigeon shell – was originally intended as a limited run special offer. But it looks as though it’s now here to stay.

The price, as you can see, is massively competitive and it’s no slouch in the performance department with a muzzle velocity of 1500 feet per sec.

This better value high performance selling point appears to have worked and the Super Fast is proving popular. As such, Hull have decided to continue the brand with the only significant change being the use of a 70mm case.

The speed of this shell makes it a little heavier on the shoulder but take my word for it, the Super Fast is here to stay. As this is the year of Hull’s 65th anniversary, are we witnessing another star being born?

Hull Super Fast 12-bore

Load: 27gm
Case Length: 70mm
Wad: Plastic or Fibre
Shot Size: 7.1/2
Powder: Nobel Sport
Muzzle Velocity: 1500 fps
Price: £156 plastic; £166 fibre

And finally, something for the growing band of .410 fans. For as long as I can remember Eley has been the only provider of a fibre wad .410 cartridge and this has made them extremely popular with rough and vermin shooters over the years.

Today there’s growing interest with .410s among clay shooters, not just for practice but for serious competitions, not least North American skeet.

Trap shooters, too, are starting to use them so Eley have produced a clay specific .410 cartridge with that all-important plastic wad.

The new Eley Trap .410 is available in a 14gm 21/2in (71/2 and 9 shot) and 18gm 3in Magnum load which may prove a serious competitor to Gamebore’s benchmark .410 NASA skeet cartridge.

The new Eley version should set you back about £205 per 1,000 compared to the Gamebore at £225 and the Express version selling for £215. In these cash-strapped times that’s a serious saving.

Eley’s Trap 3in will also provide serious competition for the Fiocchi .410 magnum load which, in my view, has been the industry standard for serious .410 clay shots looking for a proper high performance shell.

I always thought the Fiocchi represented pretty good value at £239 per 1,000 but the Eley Trap will only cost you around £224 – another worthwhile saving.

Eley .410 Trap

Load: 14gm 18gm
Case Length: 65mm 76mm
Wad: Plastic Plastic
Shot Sizes: 71/2 & 9 71/2 & 8
Powder: Maxam Maxam
Muzzle Velocity: 1160 fps 1160 fps
Price: £205; £224

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