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Anyone Cast?

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by ColCol, Mar 31, 2011.

  1. ColCol

    ColCol

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    Apr 15, 2010
    TN
    Anyone around here do their own casting/loading lead bullets? I drug my old Lyman 450 sizer and Model 61 Mold Master pot out this week and think I'll start casting again. It's a heck of a lot cheaper than buying jacketed bullets or loaded ammo...even from Wally World. My GP100 really does great with 158-170gr bullets with HS-6, Power Pistol and 2400 and I already have molds for both the 158 and 170 gr bullet so why not? I'll be busy this weekend as I have about 70 pounds of pure lead and Linotype as well as a five gallon bucket nearly full of wheel weights. I have all the necessary componets to start this back after decades of not touching it and with the price of bullets/ammo today, I should save a bundle.
     
  2. GioaJack

    GioaJack Conifer Jack

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    Apr 14, 2009
    Conifer, CO
    Little Stevie has been casting for over 45 years and is recognized as one of the preeminent experts on the subject.

    If you do a Google search of;

    Little Stevie's School of Bullet Casting and Taffy Pulling

    it will list class dates and tuition fees. For the true caster it is a must attend event.

    Purchase of school uniform is optional.

    BTW... given the amount of evil zinc wheel weights that are floating around you're probably only going to get around 70 to 80 pounds of usable alloy out of that bucket. (I learned that at Stevie's school.)


    Jack
     


  3. Randy from Kansas

    Randy from Kansas

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    Mar 3, 2009
    kansas
    Go Jack Go
    you are on a roll tonight
    Good Luck tomorrow
     
  4. Colorado4Wheel

    Colorado4Wheel

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    CO
    I am pretty sure he is not using Lee molds so he should be fine.
     
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2011
  5. jmorris

    jmorris

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    Apr 13, 2006
    I do, from time to time, I don't like to. When I do, I like to do it quickly. I have a machine that does it for me and a sizer too.
     
  6. fredj338

    fredj338

    21,699
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    Dec 22, 2004
    so.cal.
    Just about al lI shoot are lead bullets in all my calibers (357sig not as much). I used to cast,, then put it aside & bought commercial. Then when prices went nuts, I started scrounging alloy again & am now casting my own practice bullets again. I actually enjoy casting more than reloading.
     
  7. shotgunred

    shotgunred local trouble maker

    8,728
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    Mar 1, 2008
    Washington (the state)
    I didn't realize that it was optional. All the real experienced guys here do it and I thought you have to in order to be taken seriously. So I reluctantly started my journey from reloader to caster last year. Saving $75 bucks a K doesn't hurt my feelings either.

    Some day I hope to save enough money to be able to afford to go to Little Stevie's School of Bullet Casting and Taffy Pulling. Until that time I will just have to continue to get advice from people who have never cast a bullet but read the casting for dummies book.
     
  8. fredj338

    fredj338

    21,699
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    Dec 22, 2004
    so.cal.
    Not really, it's almost a separate hobby. It's just another way to get deeper into your shooting & reloading. Being self suficient when it comes to components is nice too. Nothing wrong w/ store bought lead bullets, but you get what yo get, so you can't tinker w/ the alloy or lube or even shape of the bullet. Casting allows you all of that. You don't even need fancy HST or Ranger, you can just cast your own LHP.:supergrin:
    [​IMG] [​IMG]
    [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2011
  9. ColCol

    ColCol

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    Apr 15, 2010
    TN
    Taffy Pulling? That sounds interesting.:) I first started casting back around '73 plus or minus a year or so, but mostly used Linotype and lead, which I had in abundance at that point. I still have ingots of 50/50 lead-Linotype and about 50 pounds of lead. The problem with commercial bullets, I've discovered, sometimes depending on where you get them you don't know for sure what BHN you're getting. Some I have that are suppose to be BHN12 turned out to be closer to BHN15-according to the Lee Hardness Tester. I can mix the proper amount of tin-lead or use 6 pounds of lead plus 4 pounds of my 50/50 mix and get a BHN of about 11, which is where I'd like to be for medium velocity bullets.

    I had the good fortune of running across a tire shop that was willing to give me their WW's for nothing!! You can't beat that. Of course, there was out of a five gallon bucket, some steel and/or Fe weights but easily culled out and put into another pile. Well, since that 70 pound bucket cost me nothing I'm not complaining.
     
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2011
  10. fredj338

    fredj338

    21,699
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    Dec 22, 2004
    so.cal.
    Free is good, if you have to pay much for a bucket like that, not worth it IMO. I used to pay $20 for a 3gal bucket, about 100#, a couple years ago & then the guy had someone come in & offer $50. Since we banned lead ww here a year ago, the lead take is less & less every month. So if you have access to alloy, get as much as possible. The cheap/free lead ww will become as extinct as an honest polititian within 2-3yrs.:dunno:
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2011
  11. ColCol

    ColCol

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    Apr 15, 2010
    TN
    Anything free now days is just about unheard of so I was amazed when he told me it wouldn't cost me anything. I really prefer to deal with ingots even if I do have to buy them from someone and over at the CastBoolits forum there are folks that will sell you all you want for a good price and other alloys as well. Smelting can be laborous and time consuming and then you have to cast and then reload. That eats up a lot of time. I'd rather spend it reloading but don't care for buying commercial lead bullets. I can do as good or better and get the mix I want.
     
  12. WiskyT

    WiskyT Malcontent

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    Jun 12, 2002
    North Carolina
    How can you say no to a uniform that has giant red shoes?
     
  13. shotgunred

    shotgunred local trouble maker

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    Mar 1, 2008
    Washington (the state)
    I should have included a smiley. I was being a smart butt.
     
  14. fredj338

    fredj338

    21,699
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    Dec 22, 2004
    so.cal.
    No, I knew you were being a bit sarcastic. My only point, casting can be a hobby unto itself w/ little need of relaoding experience. Casting is making soemthing, that appeals to a lot of craft/hands on types.:supergrin:
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2011
  15. Colorado4Wheel

    Colorado4Wheel

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    Nov 2, 2006
    CO
    Watch out. I am planning on casting tommorow morning.
     
  16. ColCol

    ColCol

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    Apr 15, 2010
    TN
    I found out the other day my old Lyman Mold Master 61's thermostat is not where you think it is. Put on 700 degrees my lead thermometer indicated it was 625. While enough to melt lead, I'd still like a bit better accuracy than that. I had leakage problems as well even after taking the stem out and going over it with a wire brush attached to the Dremel tool. I think I may retire my old friend and just get a Lyman 4-20. After 35 years or so, it's earned retirement.