I'm up and casting bullets!!
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Thread: I'm up and casting bullets!!

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
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    I'm up and casting bullets!!

    I had a chance to play around with my new casting equipment tonight. After a little trial and error I think I have the process down. I casted for about an hour and turned out 214 rounds. Now I just need to tumble lube them and make a trip to the range. I was hoping to get away without having to size them all but the mold does seem to be a little over sized. The rear most driving band are .453-.455. Weight wise they are all right around 231.5gr.

    Here is what they started off life as....



    Here they are after a little TLC....

    "When Government fears the people, it's liberty. When people fear the Government, it's tyranny."
    - Benjamin Franklin

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  3. #2
    With the tire weights, did you add any tin to the mix to make them a little harder, since it looks like you are using these in a Semi-auto pistol?

    Gulf Coast, Floriduh
    Sccy is the limit

  4. #3
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    There's two ways to make them harder. One by mixing Tin or if you can get some, Linotype or quenching the hot bullets in water. I do both. I have a bucket of water and I drop the hot bullets out of the mold into it. Works great. Be careful though! NEVER drop a wet bullet back into the melting pot! You will get an explosion of molten lead. Water and molten lead do not mix! Here is a good article on heat treating cast bullets. Heat Treating Cast Bullets For Better Performance
    USAF Retired, CATM, SC CWP, NH NR CWP, NRA Benefactor
    To preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of people always possess arms, and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them... -- Richard Henry Lee, 1787

  5. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by HootmonSccy View Post
    With the tire weights, did you add any tin to the mix to make them a little harder, since it looks like you are using these in a Semi-auto pistol?
    Hey Hootmon. From what I've read the clip on wheel weights contain 1/2% Tin, 4% Antimony, and 1/4% Arsenic. This mixture should give me around a 12 BHN and work well for loads up to 25,000 PSI. I'll be loading these for my .45 acp which max listed chamber pressure is between 20,000 and 21,000 psi.

    I'm also going to try a batch of water quenched bullets. This should harden them to handle up to 48,000 PSI. Then I'll take each batch to the range and see how they shoot.

    I still have a couple old zero 230 grain swaged lead bullets left from the last batch I bought. I read I can put both bullets base to base in a vise and crank it down a few turns. The softer of the two bullets will compress more then the other. If my cast bullets are softer then the zero bullets I'll probably remelt them down and add some tin.
    "When Government fears the people, it's liberty. When people fear the Government, it's tyranny."
    - Benjamin Franklin

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Twin Falls, Idaho
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    I'm using the same mold you are. Straight wheel weights are hard enough to be ok in 45ACP due to the low velocity of the round. I've even cast bullets of plain lead lubed with Liquid Alox that shot just fine and cleaned up just fine. I do not size mine, however I do use a Lee Factory Crimp Die in the final stage. Tin makes the lead flow smooth, antimony is the primary harding alloy. Wheel weights have antimony and linotype contains even more. Some even consider linotype to be too hard by it's self. anyway with 45 you should be OK whatever alloy you use. I've even found that 9mm at 1100 FPS, 30000 PSI do just fine with wheel weight bullets and even 1/2 wheel weight-1/2 lead still works fine with liquid Alox. I did have to quit using my factory crimp die in 9mm. some cases were a little thicker and the factory crimp die squeezed the case back to factory outside dimensions, but the bullet then tumbled from being too small. Switching to a taper crimp solved my 9mm tumbling problem. I talked to the engineer at Lee and he confirmed this sometimes happens. They gave me a refund on my die. Very good customer service. He was the one that told me wheel weights are hard enough, but also suggested I should quench them in cold water. So far it's worked very good for me.

    Good Luck!!!

  7. #6
    Is it weird that I think those bullets are pretty?

    Steve

  8. Nice work son. All the years of hanging around a tool maker is starting to pay off.
    Calling an illegal alien an 'undocumented immigrant'
    is like calling a drug dealer an 'unlicensed pharmacist '.

  9. #8
    Nice work, they look good! I have a question for you guys! I called my local tire shop and they told me I can come by and pick up their wheel weights anytime. The only thing that he mentioned was that a lot of the newer stuff they use is made up of zinc (better for the environment as he put it). He stated that the ones they have, 50% are lead and 50% zinc. Anyone know how to tell the difference and is everyone else having to sort through all this?
    "You must prove you feared for your life. Pee in your pants."
    -Someone on this site!

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
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    Twin Falls, Idaho
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    Zinc won't melt in your pot and will float to the top with all the other trash

  11. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by srshadwi View Post
    Is it weird that I think those bullets are pretty?

    Steve
    I was thinking the same thing. Nice batch of bullets, hopefully this will be a picture of my garage soon.

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