Nowadays, one of the most frequents concept is “Go Green”. No matter how much this organic campaign is cool, what is certain is that its promulgators push on this worldwide trend, so what matters is to keep up with the times and do something for the environment, for its conservation, and we have done it in our usual way... well.
In the era that has just arrived, both shooting and hunting cartridges must show their "belonging" to this green concept, so here comes the new wads in organic material, a special biodegradable compound.
We don’t mind at all this way of thinking and being, but above all it gives us an emotional charge and a strong gratification to see how B&P has really done a necessity ... virtue with remarkable and technically important results in this difficult job, even on a ballistic level. In fact, the new wad shows a perfect hold, excellent shot patterns and a strong tenacity and robustness. Finally, they don’t break even in the most intense cold, as could happen to many others.
In a few years, B&P R&D has developed this ambitious project, beginning from a careful analysis of the available solutions to the material research and finally the development of a complete range of wads and couvettes all made with the new special material, unconventional, the “Green Core” project.
Let’s have a look to the the proposals dedicated to the world of clay shooting, loaded with these components.
Sporting & Compak Fiber Green Core
A cartridge that uses 28 grams of lead in combination with the biodegradable “Green Core” gas seal combined with a vegetable felt wad.
Sporting & Compak Fiber is an entry level cartridge, recommended for clay shooting training in the Sporting or Compak sporting. The presence of the felt wad is frequent in these cartridges and denotes the design desire to produce a studied generosity of shot pattern, with better distribution of the shot, not too much centralized, an advantage for short and medium distances shooting.
The felt wad always gives to the shot a softness, a pleasant and very useful feature in demanding series on the double target for greater comfort and stability of alignment between the two shots. Last but not least, the felt wad also performs an effective cleaning action with each shot, leaving the barrel lightly soiled and lightly spliced, therefore with a better ballistics.
Made of 12/70 T.2 bottle green plastic case, of the Gordon type, a case that has a real felt recoil reduction, our cartridge uses the G2000x28 powder in a dosage of about g. 1.48. The special Green Core pale green gas seal in biodegradable and compostable plastic material is settled on the powder.
The case is completed by a 20 mm waxed vegetable felt wad with paper on the sides, clearly biodegradable, as it is made only with natural materials.
The closure is the classic six-fold star, made on the Amut plastic tube, with special coils not too thin on the edge, the cartridge is closed and finished at a standard height, measuring 57.7 mm.
Sporting Compak Fiber test at the B&P ballistic laboratory
The Sporting Compak Fiber cartridge also surprised us considerably for its ballistic aspect.
In the manometric barrel, the cartridge showed a muzzle velocity in the cylindrical barrel of 397.1 m / s on 5 shots, equal to about 410 m / s in a full barrel at full choke, excellent value and able to give to the cartridge a remarkable fracturing effectiveness even on hard targets.
Moreover, the pressure detected is modest, equal to 568.5 bar. So, we detect values in line and regular with the standard of a good modern type of shooting cartridge.
The remaining parameters: barrel time, ignition delay and residual muzzle pressure, are excellent as is the integral underlying the pressure curve, which summarizes the amount of thrust generated by the powder after being transformed into propulsive gas, in this case a value equal to 549 bar * ms that indicate an effective propellant efficiency.
Then about the fire test, we tested the cartridges in two different weapons: a typical Beretta S682 shotgun and an automatic Beretta A400 Xplorer single chambered 3.5” or Super Magnum 12/89. With both shotguns we found a very pleasant and sweet shooting behavior.
The 28-gram load in the Beretta S682 shotgun used in the test generates a modest and mellow recoil, probably thanks to the effective combination of fiber wad and Gordon cartridge case. so quick and easy the recovery of the second barrel. In the automatic, the stability is superb and the recoil detection almost unnoticeable; the weapon rearms perfectly.
The shot patterns made with the indicated shotgun and 750 mm barrels are regular and very uniform, the plate examination also reveals a considerable residual energy evidenced by the decisive imprint and characterized by the classic central white granulin, the pellets therefore have a strong residual energy at the impact distance.
What’s left to do is to bring the new B&P cartridges to a shooting range dedicated to this fascinating discipline, which is very useful and in fact appreciated and practiced not only by shooters, but also by hunters, who do not give up on training during the summer.
Next for Sporting Clay
After the Sporting&Compak Fiber, a cartridge developed for training, the new Next has arrived, a high-level Sporting cartridge in two versions; with container wad and with felt.
Why a double line?
The answer is easy and intuitive if you know well the dynamics of the Sporting clay discipline with its targets and ballistic needs linked to the various schemes and fields.
For the targets of the Compak Sporting or for the Sporting Clay that takes place on a campaign path, it was a must diversifying and optimizing the ballistics of the shotshells.
The presence of the Next Fiber with Green Core gas seal and felt, denotes the desire to give to this cartridge a calculated width of the shot pattern or rather clearly generous, regular and not too much centralized patterns, an advantage for shots at short and medium distances.
The felt wad, especially on medium / long distances, reduces the centralization of the shot pattern.
Then, the felt gives to the shot a characteristic elasticity, useful in longer series and especially on double targets where less recoil and detection result in superior firing stability and faster realignment. The felt wad also creates a self cleaning action on the barrel, shot after shot.
The two Next cartridges use an attractive Gordon green plastic case in 12/70 T.4 gauge, the color is bottle green.
The Gordon basewad is used in different colors depending on the numbering of the pellet: white for 8.5 and black for 7.5 and 7. As we know the Gordon basewad helps reduce felt recoil, improving stability and ballistics with particular attention to shot patterns, which have never shown to be an excellent level as in these cartridges.
The two Next and Next Fiber, as already mentioned, are top-level ammunition for sporting competitions, as such they use components of the highest quality. The powder is the note F2x28, an excellent propellant, very stable, which certainly doesn’t need to be incensed having been victorious for 60 years in shooting competitions all over the world.
Very stable propellant and insensitive to climatic factors, a dibasic containing nitrocellulose (90%) and nitroglycerin (10%), with high thermodynamic efficiency, in a dosage of about g. 1.45.
Next with a special pre-cut container Green Core wad
The cartridge examined is the Next with container wad, a wad with a structure already known in the profile of its suspension, deriving from the Z2M H24, which in this case is made entirely with the new 100% Biodegradable material, well settled on the powder has the pre-cut cup in six petals in the loading phase, this solution with excellent qualitative reflection on the groups; the color is pale green.
The plastic of this wad is soft to the touch, you can already sense it to the touch that it is not at all fragile. Its stability is excellent when it is in the cartridge, where it doesn’t fear even the glacial cold at all, remaining perfectly elastic and tenacious, without fracturing.
Its decomposition starts on the ground, by the action of temperature, light and micro-organisms.
The closure is the classic six-fold star, made on the Amut plastic tube, with special coils on board of medium-high thickness, the finished cartridge at standard height measures 57.7 mm.
The pellet n. 7 (2.5 mm.) white and hardened by 5% antimony is a support to obtain regular and homogeneous patterns and creates in this cartridge a superlative ballistic product for distant targets, on which it carries a good density of pellets and a high residual energy, therefore a fracturing capacity at the top.
The pellet n. 7.5 (2.4 mm.) and 8.5 (2.2 mm.) are very suitable for not very fast targets and / or at medium engagement distance.
Pattern test at the ballistic laboratory of the Next with ZM Green Core wad
Let’s start saying that on the bench the cartridge gives about 415m/s to the V1 in the choked barrel with a pressure of about 570/600 bar. For this pattern test we used a Beretta S682 with choked barrels of 75cm.
The shot patterns are very compact and homogeneous. These qualities combined with the heavy pellet n. 7 guaranteeing a great effectiveness even on the most difficult shooting targets.
In particular, we tested the first barrel at a distance of 30 and 32 meters and in both cases the shot patterns are particularly dense and contained in the 75 cm circle, almost with all the pellets.
The second barrel, tested at 32 and 35 meters, denotes the effective effectiveness of this cartridge even over longer distances and more insidious targets. In fact, the density appears particularly evident guaranteeing a high number of pellets on the target. With these characteristics, this cartridge will prove to be very interesting and effective even on those difficult targets that engage at very long distances and which are called “extreme”.
Next with Green Core gas seal and felt
In the Next Fiber the new green Bio couvette is settled on the powder and above this the 20 mm waxed vegetable felt wad with paper on the sides, clearly everything is biodegradable, the couvette for the new biodegradable material and the Fiber wad made with natural plant materials.
Lead n. 7.5 (2.4 mm.) is the same as already seen, with white polishing and hardened by 5% Sb.
The closure is the usual star made on the Amut plastic tube of the bottle green Gordon T.4 case. This is a not too thin hem with a 2.45mm thick border.
The complete cartridge at standard size measures 57.7 mm.
It’s easy to understand how the Next Fiber looking for a slightly pattern opening, mediated by the felt wad and the slightly smaller pellet, ballistic qualities useful in schemes without Extreme targets or very long and difficult shot, in this situation the cartridge has a good returns in the first and the second barrel, although if it is possible to combine it with a second effective barrel at the flow limit using the Next with the container wad.
Apart from the wad, the remaining components are very similar to those already seen on the Next, F2x28 powder and selected and hardened lead, a V1 in the barrel choked of about 415 m / s and pressures hardly above 600 bar. Next Fiber, as already mentioned, positively reveals a great shooting stability and a very soft shoulder effect, which allows excellent control of the shotgun when shoot.
Pattern test at the ballistic laboratory of the Next with Green core gas seal and felt
For this test we used a Beretta S682 with 75 cm choked barrels with which we have tried to find and highlight the differences compared to the model with container.
We replicated the first shot pattern at 30 meters which appeared just concentrated compared to the version with container, due to the short distance. However, the careful eye, detects the effect of the felt wad, with a lower density in the central area.
In the shot pattern carried out with the second barrel at 34 meters, Next Fiber clearly confirms its ability to produce a more generous grouping, but still very regular in distribution, with a lower concentration than the version with container.