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Author Topic: Shotgun pattern testing protocol  (Read 27231 times)

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Offline Scott Doyle

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    • An Introduction to Forensic Firearms Identification
Shotgun pattern testing protocol
« on: June 16, 2004, 10:58:10 PM »
Shotgun pattern testing protocol started by Arthur Stevens

Posted by: Arthur Stevens on Mar. 16 2003,23:57

Does anyone have a good protocol they can share to pattern-test a shotgun?
I have the evidence shotgun. I have similar make/model of shell used. I intend to fire a minimum of five (5) rounds at 5,10,15,20 and 25 yards.

Should I fire more rounds to get a better pattern (NRA actually recommends 10 rounds)?

Should I fire at smaller incremental distances (i.e. 6,9,12,15,18,21,24,27 yards)?

Has anyone presented their evidence in court and made a nice chart or graphic they can recommend?

If anyone has a good protocol they believe works well, please post it!

Arthur Stevens
Mercer PA
Posted by: Mike Doherty on Mar. 26 2003,12:26

I've used a standard silhouette target in hunting-related shooting investigations. Once you're far enough away to have individual pellet holes, mark each with a white adhesive reinforcing ring, such as sold in office supply stores. This helps the pellet holes stand out, either for photography or presentation. I've never had to use it in court, though. Seems to me that five-yard increments is good enough, unless you know the actual or claimed shooter-to-target distance.
Mike Doherty, PA Game Commission


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Re: Shotgun pattern testing protocol
« Reply #1 on: October 10, 2006, 11:04:41 PM »
We have a pretty good book that may help you with this. - Oberfell, George G. & Thompson, Charles E. MYSTERIES OF SHOTGUN PATTERNS. Philadelphia, PA: Ray Riling Arms Books, 2005. Reprint. ISBN: 0960309489. The first and only publication that gives a complete analysis of the percentages of shot distribution and also of patchlines for the entire pattern of all types of shotgun patterns of all practical diameters for a-1 practical shooting distances and a-1 practical shooting conditions. 164 pages, illustrated.  Softcover. NEW.  (12275) $25.00


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