Winchester Ammunition expanded its broad line of shotshells with the addition of the Varmint X load. Winchester uses the Varmint X name with a number of centerfire loads, but this year’s introduction is the first shotshell offering.
Winchester developed a liquid gel that it uses in this load that is said to tighten up the pattern for longer range shooting. Called Shot-Lok Technology, Winchester coats the pellets in the proprietary gel which then hardens. When fired, the hardend gel buffers the shot as it travels down the barrel and then breaks cleanly away once the pellets exit the muzzle. This helps ensure the pellets are much rounder than normal and will fly true.
Winchester Ammunition uses this gel technology in other loads in the Long Beard XR and Rooster XR lines. The company claims to improve useable shot distance by up to 20 additional yards.
The new Varmint X load is a 12 gauge 3″ shell loaded with 1.5 ounces of plated BBs. The muzzle velocity is rated at 1,300 fps, and at 40+ yards, the BBs will penetrate up to 12″. According to Winchester, the load is great for coyotes, foxes and similarly sized animals in areas of heavy brush and forest.
For those of us in the southeastern United States that have a coyote problem, this might make a good load. We typically do not have the wide open spaces that varmint hunters in the west might be used to.