Puzzling shotshell fabrication?

A friend asked me to appraise a lot of misc. cartridges - you know, the shoe box of odds and ends. There was some good items in the mix and 2 of these. I am 90% certain it is a homemade something, but there’s that 10% of wonder if it is factory. They are not reloads, as the cases do not show evidence of firing - and the primer looks original, however the roll crimp is suspicious! An industrial application, perhaps - like to drive in wood screws at long distance:) Anyone else seen something like this?

Does the slug appear original? It isn’t too hard to put a screw into lead. Although there were companies that sold handgun catridges with screws imbedded in them, however I don’t think there was ever a shotshell version. Have you tried removing the screw?

Looks like someones work bench special!

Really hard to say about the slug as it is not the usual round nosed variety or round ball. I started to remove the screw then decided to get an opinion. If this is original I do not want to alter or damage it. If it is a “repurposed” round they certainly did a neat job of re-rolling the crimp and not scarring the paper, etc. Still I can’t help but see it as non-factory…

I think so, too, but still that question. Ballistics wise - the screw is a bit off center - bet the slug would tumble soon out of the barrel!

A tool would do a nice re-crimp if it wasn’t fired or most likely from a new empty, & the seating depth of the slug looks too deep. I too vote from a work bench.

Think the consensus is in - a home project. Thanks all :)

Did a dissection and this is still interesting as to ‘design’. The slug is basically a hollow shell weighing in at 358 grains (0.815 oz. - about 7/8) and would seem to date before the intro of the round nose - rifled versions. The 1" wood screw slips through the hole in the top and threads into the wads below. The top(over shot) wad was placed under the slug (started as a #6 shot). Apparently the screw kept the slug and wads together in flight. First thought was the screw was to accelerate expansion, but that does not seem the case.
Well… off to the next mystery…

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Apparently a little reverse engineering going on here, pun intended
A French (left) & two German slugs with screws.


Some may wonder what the purpose of this surprising arragement is.
The (light) wad being fixed to the rear end of the (heavy) slug moves the center of drag forces rearward, without significantly changing the center of gravity. This improves inflight stability of the slug.

good to know, thanks