12 Gauge Target Loads – Remington Versus Winchester

It is getting nice out, and there is nothing like getting outside and shooting some clays.

Thus begins our tale.

My buddy and I went out to get supplies and found ourselves in a tough spot. The gun shop had a case of Winchester, and a case of Remington 12 Gauge Target loads (both in 7.5 shot) but not a whole lot of either.

So we did what anyone would do and bought the last two cases of each. The Remington case had 250 shells while the Winchester cases come in boxes of 100 shells.  So we ended up with a bit more Remington than Winchester ammo.

My buddy gets out the shotguns and I get the trap house ready and we start to shoot. We are doing straight forward clay shooting with 10 rounds of clays each before switching off while keeping friendly track of the score.


In all we fired 200 Remington shells and 100 Winchester with surprising results.

Ammo Remington Winchester
Failure to Fire 0 0
Failure to Extract 2 0

The failure to extract issues actually caused us to clear the weapons and break the barrels and free the lodged shell with a rod. The extractor hook would grab the metal cap around the primer and pull it off completely or just off one edge, then it would fall off, leaving the hull lodged in the barrel.

The first time it happened I thought it was just a bad round. but the second time it happened I was amazed. A 2% failure rate is crazy for something with the Remington name on it. I love the 870 I was shooting, and felt more comfortable with it than the expensive Benelli Nova my friend also had (which cost 2x as much).

When you look at the bad shells you can see where the crimping tool didn’t apply enough pressure around the hull to seal the cap and the hull together.

The Remington ammo was about 35 cents cheaper per box of 25 than the Winchester, but that doesn’t mean I’ll accept a 2% failure rate.

But the thing that really scared me is that if this can happen on this shell, will it also happen to my slugs and buckshot? Because the worst possible thing I could see happening would be to get a shot off and then not be able to cycle when the second guy is coming up my stairs.

Bottom line, this was a really bad experience for me with Remington Ammo and I’ll be thinking real hard before I buy any shells from them again.  I’ll let you know how the last 50 we have left work out next time me and my buddy go shooting.


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