Cast Bullet questions

Discussion in 'The Ammo & Reloading Forum' started by DixieLandMan, Dec 16, 2011.

  1. DixieLandMan

    DixieLandMan Member

    Oct 18, 2011
    Ok, this may seem stupid but I was looking at the Lyman cast bullet handbook yesterday. Some good info in there. Question is this: Do I need to get Lyman book if I am using Lee molds or get the Lee book? I know that this may be personal opinion but wouldn't Lee be the better choice if I melt and cast using Lee molds? Also, if I am reloading 230 grain JHP, would that same amount of powder work for 230 grain FJM loads?
  2. mikld

    mikld Well-Known Member

    Jun 24, 2009
    The Lee manual I have does not list Lee cast bullets specifically. I suggest you get the Lyman manual (a much better "how to" section and better load data), and use load data from similar weight/design cast bullets. I have a Lee mold for T/L SWC around 150 gr. so I used data for a Lyman 158 gr. SWC starting loads, and worked up to a load I liked. For the different style jacketed bullets the same powder charge may work, but again, begin with the starting loads and work up. There may be slight variations between JHP and FMJ bullets like bearing surface, jacket composition, etc., that may affect pressures/velocities...

  3. JLA

    JLA Well-Known Member

    Feb 26, 2007
    Heart Of Texas
    Cast lead is cast lead. no matter the mold it drops from its still cast lead. Use the lyman cast bullet handbook and if your bullet weight doesnt exactly match that listed in the lyman book use the data that matches your bullet best.

    For example, if you are using a LEE 228gr 1R mold for your .45ACP, I would use the data listed for the Lyman 225gr #452374, as long as you start at the starting charge and work your load up slowly and carefully then you wont run into problems. Generally you will want to err on the safe side by using data for a slightly heavier bullet, But I listed that example specifically because I have used it the way i described. and found that 4.5 gr bullseye is a sweet shootn load. Not too heavy and not too light.

    Also, generally, Jacketed bullets use a little less powder than lead bullets to get a certain velocity. this is because with jacketed bullets pressures mount quicker. This makes it a safe practice to use jacketed bullet data for cast lead of equal weight, but not safe to use cast lead data for jacketed bullets. And this is concerning handgun cartridges only. Cast lead data in centerfire rifles is generally way underloaded compared to thier jacketed counterparts.
  4. army mp

    army mp Member

    Jan 30, 2009
    western Pa,
    Un-like the older Lyman cast bullet manuals, the newer ones do list loads for some Lee and other mold, But then I have done fine with only the older Lyman books using RCBS and Saeco molds for years, as said get close with the bullet and load listed, and as always start low and work up. I have bought the newest Lyman cast book, But with the exception of the above and a couple powders added. Not much new in it.
  5. JohnnyFlake

    JohnnyFlake New Member

    Dec 15, 2011
    Henderson, Nevada
    I have read on several occasions, from several sources, that when using load data for cast/lead bullets, for the same weight bullet that is jacketed, you should reduce the powder charge by 10%.
  6. army mp

    army mp Member

    Jan 30, 2009
    western Pa,
    The one and only given in Reloading and casting. You will not find two guys who will totally agree on anything. And in most cases an item or practice may work better for one than another. And in some cases, guys are just lucky they have gotten away with something as long as they have. If new to either, use the forums to fill in the holes with caution. A good reloading or casting manual should always be your main resource. And this is not a Degrading post to anyone on here, or anyone in this posting. Just a fact of the super highway of mis-information.
  7. JLA

    JLA Well-Known Member

    Feb 26, 2007
    Heart Of Texas
    from a safety standpoint you should do that any time you use data that doesnt exactly match your components no matter if its for rifle or handgun. You most likely read that in a reloading manual or on a powder/bullet mfgr webpage where they have to cover thier asses for liability purposes. Its not a bad practice and should be exercised regardless.
  8. armoredman

    armoredman Active Member

    I use Lee molds and use data from the Lyman book, with good results. I also use cast data from Accurate Arms loading data, my main choice in powder. :) is a fantastic resource for all your casting questions, bar none.
  9. Popgunner

    Popgunner Active Member

    Dec 3, 2005
    The one reason similar weight cast bullets often show lower charge weights is that the magical 1000 fps rule is often followed. overpressuring/overspeeding cast bullets can cause leading. For instance in the 44mag you may see a 200 grain jacketed bullet in a manual at 1500-1700 fps & the same weight cast bullet maxed in the 950fps range. Cast bullet load pressures are usually lower, mostly to prevent leading.
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