Here's the results of the Summer Shotgun Shootout:

The premise was to determine which method of loading the '97 Pump was fastest.
The methods used were:
Also included, just for fun, were:
Before the test, there was some feeling that the '97 Stokers' would have an advantage. This proved to be false, in fact Stoking (on the clock) was just about the slowest method of loading a '97.
This sample, although small, is probably not that far off in predicting the quickest ways to load a '97.
Be sure and read the interesting comments at the bottom of the page, below the table.
  1. The test was to load and shoot 6 shells at a 1' square target about 31' away.
  2. All guns started empty, open at port arms.
  3. Misses added 5 seconds to your time and pretty much put you out of the running.

OAShooter Style Order Time Club ST
1 Handsome Valentine 97x1 1 7.84 Nevada Rangers NV
2 Mercury 97x1 2 8.30 Silver City Shooters NV
3 Capt. Fox 97x1 3 8.48 Cajon Cowboys CA
8 J. "Slim" Chance 97x1 4 10.65 River Bend Rangers MN
13 Spaghetti Slim 97x1 5 11.23 Silver City Shooters NV
10 Spaghetti Slim 97x2 1 10.83 Silver City Shooters NV
20 Sierra Kid 97x2 2 35.73 Silver City Shooters NV
11 Cliffhanger Mule 1 10.84 Cajon Cowboys CA
17 Borzoi Kid Mule 2 21.19 Silver City Shooters NV
18 Indiana Slick Mule 3 23.51 River Bend Rangers MN
4 Shadow Creek OT 1 8.67 Nevada Rangers NV
12 Two Dogs OT 2 11.21 Cajon Cowboys CA
21 Durango Single 1 44.48 Silver City Shooters NV
19 Old Scout Single BP 2 30.24 Cajon Cowboys CA
7 Doc Peabody Stoked 1 10.07 Nevada Rangers NV
16 Midnight Desperado Stoked 2 16.90 River Bend Rangers MN
5 T.L. SxS 1 9.04 Cajon Cowboys CA
6 Slugs SxS 2 9.56 Up the Creek Gang LA
9 Deadeye Dakota SxS 3 10.82 Nevada Rangers NV
14 One Eyed Rider SxS 4 11.66 River Bend Rangers MN
15 Kentucky Reb SxS 5 15.41 Silver City Shooters NV


"I had the paramount privilege of watching our own CAS EOT World Champ, "Tequila," shoot this past week-end in Texas and witnessed a real exhibition. The guy got off six shots, loading his model '97 shotgun from the belt, in 6.35 seconds. To prove it wasn't a fluke...we had him do it twice more. Times were 6.4 and 6.8 seconds. (he musta fumbled on that last one!) The great thing is, my hubby had the video camera out and got it on film. We play it back nightly instead of watching TV. We're hoping it rubs off. The other great thing is, he's one of the nicest guys I've met in the game.
P.S./ He loads left-handed over the top. So do!"

A major Tequila Fan, "Aimless Annie"
(Note from Doc Peabody: Tequila's scores are not entered because he wasn't officially shooting the SSS).

"I think the only advantage of stoking is when you have to move or reach for the ammo. If distance is involved the stoking might make sense. Other then that I believe I can double load as fast or faster . It also might be faster in some cases to stoke from a box or prop. Loading from the belt is faster by conventional means. It might be good to experiment to try the other situations."
Evil Roy

"I think the smoothest, most streamlined reloading method would be from a left shouldered '97, loaded & pumped with the right hand. A well skilled shooter with this method would be impressive to watch."

Buckskin Frank Leslie

"I was running the timer for most of the shooters and the stokers were typically taking between 12 - 13 seconds just to get the first shot off. Now I am sure that this could have been reduced by some practice, but it still takes an amount of time to get the shells in. I am of the firm belief that between the various methods, stoking a '97 offers no significant advantage."

Jonathan "Slim" Chance

Thanks to all those who participated.
Doc Peabody, Painless Dentist & Proctologist,
(another over-the-top convert)

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