Originally Posted by hiwall
"How well they work?"
I guess they worked well in the civil war as a popular loading was "buck and ball".
From the Rev War actually: In October 1777, General Washington recommended the men deliver their first volley with a load of “one musket ball and four or eight buckshot, according to the strength of their pieces.” And from Army GENERAL ORDERS, Head Quarters, Perkiomy, October 6, 1777; “buckshot are to be put into all cartridges which shall be hereafter made."
In the War of the Rebellion, Buck n Ball loads were, of course, restricted to smoothbores (i.e. original condition Model 1842 Percussion Muskets, etc.) albeit standard to them. By the end of the war Rifle Muskets had all but completely replaced smoothbores and such cartridges were dealt a serious blow. Soon thereafter, the advent of self-contained metallic cartridges, faster smokeless powders and their smaller bullets finished the job.
See CENTURION true Buck n Ball defense round. One .65 Ball, six #1 (.30) Buckshot -- ouch!