If you shoot Hevi-Metal ammunition, you know how effective it can be for duck and goose hunting. In this guide we’ll take a look at the best waterfowl choke tubes that work well with Hevi-Metal ammo and provide consistent patterns with repeatable results.
Hevi-Metal is a duplex waterfowl load that combines steel shot with heavier than steel alloy pellets to create patterns up to 25% denser than conventional steel loads. It’s able to achieve this by reducing the size of the Hevi-Metal pellets while still retaining the equivalent ballistics of larger steel shot.
In this review we’ll discuss some of the best choke tubes to use with Hevi-Metal ammo and what you can expect for different duck hunting scenarios.
Hevi-Metal Choke Tube Comparison List
Best Chokes to Use with Hevi-Metal
Below are the top 3 best chokes to use with Hevi-Metal that can provide exceptional results beyond conventional factory choke tubes.
There’s no better choke tube for Hevi-Metal ammo than the one that was designed specifically for it. Environmetal, the makers of Hevi-shot and Hevi-Metal, put in the hours to develop Hevi-shot choke tubes to pattern consistently with Hevi-Metal shotgun shells.
Hevi-shot choke tubes are a premium aftermarket choke tube that is extended and ported for increased ballistics and ergonomics in the field. They come in two different models: Mid-Range and Extended Range.
Mid-Range is the preferred choke for Hevi-Metal ammo with shots over decoys up to 40 yards. The ported choke helps separate the shot from the wad which decreases flier pellets and reduces shot string length.
Hevi-shot Choke Tube Features:
- Designed specifically for Hevi-shot ammunition (Hevi-Metal, Hevi-Shot, Hevi-SNOW)
- Available for all popular shotgun brands and gauges
- Mid-range choke is best for decoying birds inside 35 yards, and the extended choke is for shots beyond 40 yards
- Grooved extended choke allows for reduced recoil and muzzle jump for quick follow up shots
- Thread Pattern: Benelli, Beretta Mobilchoke
- Gauge: 12 GA
- Shot Type: Hevi-Shot, lead, or copper plated lead
- Material: Stainless Steel
- Popular Firearm Models: Benelli Nova, M1 Super 90 and M4
Patternmaster choke tubes are the top of the line for waterfowl hunting. They were the first to offer wad stripping technology in order to reduce shot string length and felt recoil. Patternmaster Code Black chokes work well with Hevi-Metal ammo and deliver tight patterns at up to 50 yards.
The Patternmaster Code Black is designed with internal rings that strip the wad as it exits the barrel. This creates separation from the shot column at the last second which reduces negative effects that the wad can have on the shot. In turn, the amount of flyer pellets is reduced (more pellets reach the target) and the shot string is shorter (more pellets reach the target at once).
Patternmaster code black choke tubes are available in both duck and goose models. The duck model is especially good over decoys paired with Hevi-Metal ammunition.
Patternmaster Code Black Features:
- Optimum results are with loads less than 1550fps
- Works with lead, steel, and Hevi-shot ammunition
- Constructed out of Carpenter Custom 630 17-4ph stainless steel
- Provides dense patterns and shorter shot strings out to 60 yards
- Durable Non-Reflective Bronze titanium coating
- Patternmaster's Code Black Goose tubes will extend out the end of your barrel 1 1/2 inches and has an effective range out to 70 yards.
- The difference between the Patternmaster Code Black Duck and Patternmaster Code Black Goose is the length the tube sticks out the barrel. (Duck=1" vs. Goose=1 ½") The added length is to accommodate a 3 ½" shell and still achieve a Full pattern.
- You will see a pattern similar to a “Full” constriction choke on paper, but because of the patented "stud ring" inside the tube, there is a much shorter shot string.
- This shorter shot string will allow more shot on target all at once, so your down range energy is sure to kill instead of cripple.
- All Patternmaster Code Black tubes are crafted of American made, titanium infused 17-4ph stainless steel and are heat treated to the optimum level for best performance.
Kicks High Flyer tubes are another extended ported option to consider when looking for a new duck hunting choke tube. It features angled ports in the choke which help to channel pressures outward and away from the shooter, thus reducing felt recoil and muzzle jump which makes for quick follow up shots.
The Kicks High Flyer Choke Tube is available for almost every gauge and brand of shotgun, including Browning, Beretta, Benelli, Winchester, Mossberg, and Browning. You can find these chokes in 20 gauge, 12 gauge, and 10 gauge offerings.
The Kicks High Flyer choke can handle all types of shot including steel, lead, copper plated lead, Hevi-shot, and Bismuth. The angled ports offer up to a 20% increase in pattern density at longer ranges.
Kick’s High Flyer Features:
- Constructed out of high performance 17-4 PH grade stainless steel
- Angle ports for reduced recoil and muzzle jump
- Up to 20% pattern density increases at long ranges
- Available for almost every shotgun gauge and brand
- Black oxide coating for extra corrosion resistance
- Extends over 1 inch past the barrel for easy installation and removal
What is Hevi-Metal?
Hevi-Metal is a duplex shotgun shell load produced by Hevi-Shot and used for waterfowl hunting. Hevi-Metal shotgun shells contain both steel shot and Hevi-Metal alloy. Hevi-Metal pellets are denser than steel shot which means smaller pellet sizes can be used to meet the equivalent ballistics of larger steel shot.
Being a duplex load, a steel shot charge is placed on the bottom of the shot column, while smaller Hevi-Metal pellets are placed above. This reduction in pellet size using Hevi-Metal pellets means an increase in pellet count by up to 25% resulting in denser patterns and more knock down power.
Hevi-Metal ammunition is designed specifically for Hevi-shot Mid-Range and Extended Range choke tubes. It features biodegradable flax seed filler on top of the shot for a tighter and deeper crimp. The combination of Hevi-shot choke tubes and Hevi-Metal ammo takes a lot of the guess work out of finding a setup that works right out of the packaging.
Tips for Shooting Hevi-Metal Shells for Duck Hunting
- Hevi-Metal shotgun shells are available in both Original and Fast Line. Original Hevi-Metal shells top out at 1500 fps, while Hevi-Metal Fast Line shells are slightly quicker with a reduced payload.
- Hevi-Metal is available for 10 gauge, 12 gauge, and 20 gauge shotguns.
- Pellet sizes for Hevi-Metal range from #6 shot up to BBB.
- Hevi-shot choke tubes were designed specifically for Hevi-Metal ammunition.
- When selecting Hevi-Metal shells, pick the steel shot size you would normally use.
- Hevi-Metal is available in 25 shells per box. 10 boxes per case.
- Hevi-Metal pellets are denser than steel shot.
- Smaller Hevi-Metal pellets offer the same ballistics as steel shot 1-2 sizes larger. This increases the pattern density of the load.
- Hevi-Metal shotgun shells are not waterproof, but pellets are designed with rust prevention under normal conditions.
- Environmetal uses flax seeds as gap fillers above the shot column to help produce tighter crimps.
- Hevi-Metal differs from Hevi-Steel in that Hevi-Steel is an all-steel load, while Hevi-Metal is a duplex load of steel and Hevi-Metal alloy.
- Hevi-Metal can be fired through any choke that is designed for steel shot.
Hevi-Metal is a popular duplex waterfowl load that delivers dense patterns and more pellets on target than standard steel shotgun shells. In order to achieve this, Hevi-Metal stacks heavier than steel pellets on top of larger steel shot.
The best choke for Hevi-Metal is the Hevi-Shot extended range choke tube. It was designed specifically to be used with Hevi-shot ammunition and it does a good job of delivering tight patterns at up to 40 yards.
The Patternmaster Code black choke is another option for consistent patterns with Hevi-Metal ammo and designed for even longer shots past 50 yards. Regardless of which choke tube you choose for Hevi-Metal ammunition, it’s always best to pattern it at the ranges you plan to hunt. For ducks, Hevi-Metal in #3 shot to works the best, while BB is the way to go for geese.
Wondering what diameter or choke constriction you need? Check out the table here.
Last update on 2021-01-16 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API