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Old 01-08-2013, 23:08   #1
shotgunred
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9mm cast and lube

I have a lee 20 lb pot and a lot of lead. Somehow now seems like a good time to get serious about learning to cast. I made a few thousand 40 sw a few years ago but never used them. I have plenty of 40 bullets but need to supplement my 9mm.

What mold would you recommend for 9mm?

What is the best way to lube bullets (without buying a star lubersizer?)
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Old 01-08-2013, 23:26   #2
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Lee 6 cavity molds are great. About $40 I think. The cheapest way to lube is Lee liquid alox. But i hate the stuff. Messy. Lyman and rcbs make lubers but its still pricy. But not as much as a star. Keep an eye on ebay too. But people usually run the price up on there too.

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Old 01-09-2013, 10:49   #3
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Lots of good mold designs. The Lee is cheap & a good profile. Lubing; you can pan lube, tumble lube or lube/size. Starting put, tumble lube is simple & easy, shoot them as cast, your results may vary. There are several variations of tumble lube that guys swear by. Check the cast boolit site under boolit lube. I think the current rage is 45-45-10, alox/JPW/mineral spirits. I tried pan & tumble lubing, hated having bullets all be a diff size, so went to a lube/sizer. You also have a wider ragne of bullet lubes to help control leading & smoke.
BTW, if you love TG, do NOT SHOOT lead bullets. The stuff smokes worse than black powder. Then again, maybe Jack would like that.
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Old 01-09-2013, 12:41   #4
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what ever bullet design you use or how you plan to lube, check out White Label Lube linked below

http://www.lsstuff.com/

I use the BAC they make in a RCBS lube/sizer for everyting from standard to magnum handgun and cast rifle loads, they also make a straight alox and a 45/45/10.

best price for lube I've been able to find on line, so good I stopped making my own.

they even work the shipping to get you the best deal in flat rate bags/boxes.

plus they hunt and are involved in scouting, gotta support a business like that.

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Old 01-09-2013, 16:02   #5
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^^^A great outfit to deal with ^^^
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Old 01-09-2013, 17:38   #6
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I just bought another Lee 6-cavity. I have a love / hate relationship with them. They're just so damned inexpensive! I got about 20,000 boolits out of the last one before it broke for good... broke a few sprue plate handles before that, but that was easy to replace.

Hit or miss. The new .45 mold drops them anywhere from .4515-.455" depending on which cavity. I run them all through a Star sizer, but that would drive me nuts if I tumble lubed them.


Little Stevie will be in here shortly, and he'll tell you more than you wanted to know about 9mm profiles.
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Old 01-09-2013, 18:53   #7
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The best way to TL is to use liquid alox as it comes out of the bottle. White Label is equal to Lee's and is cheaper. All the various special recipes are bull****. A light coat of LA will prevent leading, give good groups and NOT be a sticky mess. I tried that JPW BS and got leading and crappy groups and the bullets weren't any cleaner. If JPW somehow improved LA, Lee would have mixed some of it in for you. It's not like Lee didn't think of adding a little wax to LA during it's developement.

The key to LA is to use the right amount. How much? I don't know. It will be less than you think. If you use too much, it will accumulate in the seater stem and reduce your COAL as you load. When I find that happening, I just give half turn or so to the Lee seater to accomidate the buld up of lube and to maintain the COAL I want. After a few hundred rounds are loaded, I take the die apart and clean it with a bore brush and some solvent, it takes about two minutes.

People love to ***** about LA but nobody makes a machine that can lube 1,000 bullets in one minute.

As for sizing, it depends on your mold. I try to make my mold choice so I won't have to size and most of my molds require sizing. It's not because I'm fussy about each bullet being the same diameter, it's a chambering issue. My Lee 120 grain TC non-TL bullet drops at 0.357" and chambers in every 9mm and 38/357 I own. One mold that drops bullets at an actual 125 grains and they shoot in many different guns with just a quick TL. It's hard to beat.

My 40SW I went with a non-TL design because I was concerned about the step on the Lee 40cal TL design causing cycling problems in my Glocks. So even though I wanted to TL design because it's not supposed to need sizing, I went with the conventional lube design. They fall at 0.403" and every once in a while I get one too fat to chamber, so I use a Lee sizer.

I need to size my TL 158RN bullets because they won't fit in my Ruger 357, but they fit my SW and even my 9mm guns (go figyah).

So, the need for sizing is a crap shoot. Order the sizer die with your mold to play it safe, or play fast and loose and skip it, like I just did with my 45. My TL 45's fall at 0.453" and my SA has such a short leade (none really) that I have to have to body of the bullet inside the case. Only the ogive can be proud of the mouth. It's not so bad because that particular bullet is supposed to be seated like that. But, my buddies had some HG clones sized at 0.452" and they had some of the body of the bullet proud of the case mouth and they chambered fine. One of my buddies has a Lee 0.452" sizer he doesn't want, so I'm going to play around with it to see if I can load them a little longer.

That's the long answer. The short answer would be like Zombie says, $40.00 for a mold that will cast thousands of bullets. I haven't ruined one yet, but I have had to replace some parts on them. I'm happy with this one FWIW:

http://www.midwayusa.com/product/294...truncated-cone

It tumble lubes fine even though it's a conventional design.
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Old 01-09-2013, 21:41   #8
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Quote:
As for sizing, it depends on your mold. I try to make my mold choice so I won't have to size and most of my molds require sizing. It's not because I'm fussy about each bullet being the same diameter, it's a chambering issue. My Lee 120 grain TC non-TL bullet drops at 0.357" and chambers in every 9mm and 38/357 I own.
Which is why I lube/size. I have more than one gun in each caliber & as csat can vary quite a bit in size, epecailly form a Lee 6cav mold. SO lube/sizing works far better for me. While I can't do 1000 in a couple min. I don't have to wait for them to dry, can reload them right off the Star. IMO, regardless of cost, nothing beats the star/magma if you want a luber/sizer. I can do almost 2K an hour, nothng but tumble lubing touches that & I have greater control over my lube recipe if I choose. I never had great results w/ Alox, but others like it. If you do tumble lube, stay away from the TL designs & just get the regular lube groove & tumble that.
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Old 01-09-2013, 21:53   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fredj338 View Post
Which is why I lube/size. I have more than one gun in each caliber & as csat can vary quite a bit in size, epecailly form a Lee 6cav mold. SO lube/sizing works far better for me. While I can't do 1000 in a couple min. I don't have to wait for them to dry, can reload them right off the Star. IMO, regardless of cost, nothing beats the star/magma if you want a luber/sizer. I can do almost 2K an hour, nothng but tumble lubing touches that & I have greater control over my lube recipe if I choose. I never had great results w/ Alox, but others like it. If you do tumble lube, stay away from the TL designs & just get the regular lube groove & tumble that.
I have no problems with the TL design bullets, it's just that they don't seem to be any more "sizer free" with any more reliability than a regular mold.
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Old 01-09-2013, 21:55   #10
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And yeah, if I was going to get a lubrisizer, I'd get the Star. The lack of nose punches alone probably makes it as affordable as the lower priced ones. Pushing on the base just makes more sense and works great with the Lee sizers.
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Old 01-09-2013, 22:01   #11
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Originally Posted by WiskyT View Post
And yeah, if I was going to get a lubrisizer, I'd get the Star. The lack of nose punches alone probably makes it as affordable as the lower priced ones. Pushing on the base just makes more sense and works great with the Lee sizers.
Yeah, think of it as a waaaaaay better Lee sizer. The straight thru, nose first design makes it very fast. They are not that good w/ gc though.
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Old 01-09-2013, 22:05   #12
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I would bet you could just get a nose punch made for the Star and it should work fine with GC. I wonder why no one is doing this.
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Old 01-10-2013, 01:18   #13
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C'mon, Stevie... tell us your whole 9mm story again.






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Old 01-10-2013, 10:56   #14
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I would bet you could just get a nose punch made for the Star and it should work fine with GC. I wonder why no one is doing this.
I have & used to do that. THe issue is you have to fit firmly each gc by hand, then size. There is nothing for the base to push against to keep the gc in place & under hydraulics of the lube, they can pop off. SO I would size mine first w/ no lube then go back & lube. PITA. So a RCBS or Lyman is a better tool for the dedicated gc user IMO.
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Old 01-10-2013, 13:11   #15
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Thanks for explaining that.
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Old 01-10-2013, 16:41   #16
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I haven't used any checks, but from what I understand, the Lee sizer is great for seating them. Fred, maybe you should pick one up
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Old 01-10-2013, 19:06   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WiskyT View Post

That's the long answer. The short answer would be like Zombie says, $40.00 for a mold that will cast thousands of bullets. I haven't ruined one yet, but I have had to replace some parts on them. I'm happy with this one FWIW:

http://www.midwayusa.com/product/294...truncated-cone

It tumble lubes fine even though it's a conventional design.
What about this one? The one you showed is sold out.

Lee 6-Cavity Bullet Mold 356-125-2R 9mm Luger, 38 Super, 380 ACP (356 Diameter) 125 Grain 2 Ogive Radius


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Old 01-10-2013, 19:11   #18
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Originally Posted by WiskyT View Post
I haven't used any checks, but from what I understand, the Lee sizer is great for seating them. Fred, maybe you should pick one up
ACtually no, it suffers the same problem. You have to seat the gc before sizing because there is nothing to push the bullet against. It can work, just not as well as a Lyman. RCBS or Redding base frist sizer. I do actually have a couple Lee sizer kits, but I don;t use them for lead bullets.
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Old 01-10-2013, 19:30   #19
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What about this one? The one you showed is sold out.

Lee 6-Cavity Bullet Mold 356-125-2R 9mm Luger, 38 Super, 380 ACP (356 Diameter) 125 Grain 2 Ogive Radius


Reloading
I'm guessing it would work fine. I only can go by the one I have, which works great.

Based on my experience with Lee molds and my range scrap, that bullet will be closer to 130 grains than 125, unless you go to the trouble of mixing up the same alloy Lee uses, which I think is a waste of time.

My "175 grain" 40 made 180 grain bullets. My "120" 9mm made 125's. My "158" 38 cal molds (two of them) both make about 161. My "230" 45 mold makes 238 grains. You get the picture, add a few grains to the published weight.
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Old 01-10-2013, 20:33   #20
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I think that if your lead mix is fairly hard, no GC would be needed up to 1100+fps. That's why I like 147 grain cast in 9mm. Pan lube has worked well for me.

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