Casting equip?

Discussion in 'The Ammo & Reloading Forum' started by Crpdeth, Jan 31, 2005.

  1. Crpdeth

    Crpdeth New Member

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    Hey Guys, I have not even casted my first bullet yet, but I am in the market for some used equip to get me started...I've looked on Ebay and see a few possibilities, but wanted to see if you folks have any resources that I haven't considered.

    I am looking for a copy of Lymans cast lead manual, a nice size pot maybe 10Lb, dipper, .45 sizing die and mold (prefer RCBS mold).

    Thanks guys

    Crpdeth
  2. frosty

    frosty New Member

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    Crpdeth, Howdy!
    Get Lymans Cast Bullet Handbook. READ IT AND READ SOME MORE.
    Buy the book at either midwayusa.com or midsouthshooterssupply.com.
    You do know that once you do start to cast you will be very addicted!
    You will cut the cost of reloading down a CRAP LOAD!

    Try to get a bottom pour pot 20lb. You will not be disappointed. There are distinct advantages to a 20lb pot. The biggest is the amount of lead you can get up to speed for pouring.
    Get a new pot.
    I got mine at Midsouthshooterssupply.com it is worth the money I have poured close to 13,000 bullets with that one pot. I only started casting back in March of last year. :eek:

    I use Lee moulds for all my casting. :eek: All my moulds are 6 cavity. People walk on the Lee moulds for whatever reason. I have used these moulds for over 13,000 bullets and they still work. You just have to take care of your equipment....thats all.

    Inplanotx will have alot of sage advice. He mentored me in all my casting/learning. Jacketed Performance With Cast Bullets By Veral Smith is the best book out there to help you along with Lymans book. I made a copy of it when Inplanotx let me borrow it. I could make a copy for you if you want. Let me know.
  3. Crpdeth

    Crpdeth New Member

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    Thanks for the advice Frosty...I agree about the manual and put it on the first of the list.
    Oddly enough, I had considered just buying everything at Midway and found a few nice RCBS items that I liked, but I cannot find the manual there anywhere...Well, I dont have to buy everything at one place but if I'm going to buy new, I might as well save a few dollars on shipping right?

    I doubt I will ever overcome what I have already spent on reloading in this lifetime, but it will nice to not be tied down by bullet manufacturers so dang much. :D

    Crpdeth
  4. richbug

    richbug New Member

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    The Lee 10# production pot works well, but it simply doesn't hold enough. It was fine when I was casting 124 9mm's, but with 310 grain 44's, it takes no time at all to empty it out.
  5. frosty

    frosty New Member

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    The book can be found at Midwayusa.com. When you get to their site click on Accessories then books, then reloading and finally cartridge reference. It is $13.99. Sorry I did know how to make a link to the exact page for you.

    Go to tire shops and start asking for all of their old wheel weights. Most will sell them to you. Make sure you have a pickup. The best way is to melt them down and pour them into ingots. When you start to cast you have more than half the work done than way. :)

    Get some leather gloves, long sleeve shirt, cap and eye protection.
    Collect all the candles you can for fluxing the mixture. Yes, candle wax is smokey, but hell they are free.
  6. inplanotx

    inplanotx New Member

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    If you really want to know how to "get jacketed performance from cast bullets", here is where to buy Veral Smiths book that Frosty is referring to.

    Jacketed Performance from Cast Bullets

    Now, it you really want the only BHN hardness tester out there that will tell you how hard your lead alloy is, here is where to get it. This and the book have been out of circulation for the last 10 to 15 years and they are again for sale. If you want one, you had better run fast.

    The LBT hardness tester is the ONLY cast bullet tester made that gives you the actual BHN number. All others need charts and measuring equipment. The LBT give a BHN number. Here ya go.

    LBT BHN Tester

    Lots of good information there too! Enjoy!
  7. Crpdeth

    Crpdeth New Member

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    I sure am ready to get started...I think I'll order a few items tonight.

    Frosty, I have an acquaintance who owns a tire shop who is saving me a bunch of weights, he said if I come in 2 month intervals he should be able to dump alot of them on me, the first time I asked him about it he said he had basicly just given a truckload of them away and from the looks of it he hoped the ol boy had good shocks on his truck. :eek:

    I'll be darn, I had went as far as the book section at Midway and checked Data manuals and How to guides, but glossed over the Cartridge reference section, thanks heaps.

    Rick, I want that book if you say I need it, but it may have to wait, I'm gonna have to tighten up on the spending for the next few weeks...Maybe it'll still be available.

    Crpdeth
  8. Crpdeth

    Crpdeth New Member

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    One more question before I make an order...I finally found a mold that I can live with, but it states that it is for "tumble lube" with "2 o-give radius".

    Is that something I want to order? Having not read the book I cant know, but I assumed the lube dies is what I'd want to use.

    Thanks

    Crpdeth
  9. inplanotx

    inplanotx New Member

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    Please show us what mould it is. Some are good for tumble lube (Lee bullets) some are not. Give us the manufacturer and the mould number. Easier that way.

    The Veral Smith book is worth 10 Lyman cast bullet handbooks. It is the Bible of cast bullet performance!
  10. Crpdeth

    Crpdeth New Member

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    Okay Rick, sorry for being incomplete in the definition, but really I wondered if A) Tumble lubing was a good idea, and B) If the bullets would work in a lube sizing die even though the mold called it otherwise.

    Here it is, I wanted a six cavity, but could not find one in 230GR RN.

    Okay, so I should buy the Veral Smith book instead of Lyman...I can swing that, I was thinking that I was going to need them both.

    Crpdeth
  11. inplanotx

    inplanotx New Member

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    If you want to load "as cast", meaning no sizing, then Lee moulds are the way. If you want to size to a certain diameter then go RCBS, Lyman or Saeco moulds.

    With the books, if you want to learn casting from "how to melt lead" to "how to load the bullet" then get the Lyman cast bullet handbook. If you want to learn how to use alloys and make your own so that you do not lead up a gun barrel, get the Veral Smith book.

    One important thing to remember, this is an outside or open air hobby. Lead fumes are dangerous. I do it in the garage with the door open and a fan blowing out!

    It is addictive though! I started with a 10 pound pot and now use a RCBS Mag 20 22lbs pot. You will need flux and other items to get started.

    Let me know how else I can help.
  12. Crpdeth

    Crpdeth New Member

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    Thanks Rick, you've already been a great help...As stated, funds are a little low ATM, so I may just buy the books, and all the means to melt the lead and pour ingots, then when my work season kicks of in about a month concentrate on a six mold RCBS-230-RN...Thats what I really wanted anyway.

    Thanks for the safety tip, I had planned to use the front porch on my little reloading shop to melt the alloys and such, sound okay?

    Crpdeth
  13. inplanotx

    inplanotx New Member

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    Sounds good to me. I think you are taking the correct approach. The two books will give you the information you need to judge what equipment will best suit what you want to do. I have never had a need for anything more that a 4 cavity mould. These are heavy enough for me. A six cavity will really build up your forearms and biceps. Gonna need to balance a six pack in the other hand to keep from fallin over! :D :D :D
  14. Crpdeth

    Crpdeth New Member

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    LOL :D

    Okay, thats what I needed to hear, I was thinking that since this seems to be a slow process (allowing the bullets to cool) that "the more the better" but if your happy with a 4 cavity than surely I will be...Save a dime or two as well.

    Crpdeth
  15. jamesed

    jamesed New Member

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    I cast lead projectiles for my .45 ACP and .30 Cal., 35 cal., and .375 cal rifles. I have a swager that forms the cast .45 ACP bullet into a Elmer Keith designed .451 diameter wad cutter. My .30 cal load is the 173 grain Lyman lead cast, the .350 Rem Mag uses a 204 grain lead cast and the .375 is a 250 grain lead cast. When I run them through my Lubrisizer I gas check all my cast projos.

    I still have over 100 lbs of lead for casting. Another source of lead (most of the time its free) is sifting out the lead at a .22 cal rim fire range. It is a real pain to seperate the lead from the sand. I do this on the kitchen stove in an old cast iron frying pan. When the lead melts if sinks to the bottom and leaves the sand and dirt floating on the top. I flux the lead with candle wax at this point and pour into aluminum refrigerator Ice cube trays. This makes really nice lead blocks to place into the melting pot.
    I find that this lead is just about right. However I add a little silver solder to it to make it harder for more powerfull hand loads.

    A friend of mine machined me up a set of dies for my hydraulic press so I can manufacture Half Jackets for lead cast projetiles. I use copper pipe as the raw material for a half jacket rounds. The first die makes the copper round into a closed base copper cylinder. The second die forces the unsized lead cast projectile into the copper half jacket and then crimps the copper halfjacket around the lead.

    The second die top punch also creates the truncated cone for the projectile to aid in feeding in a chamber. This is necessary for the .45 ACP. I use a 185 grain lead cast for making my .45 ACP Half Jackets. The total projectile weight is 210 grains for this projectile. The half jacketed .30 cal projectile weighs in at 200 grains, the .358 cal half jacket weighs in at 229 grains and the .375 half jacket weighs 275 grains. I can fire them at full loads with the normal copper fouling.

    I find that making copper half jackets extends the utility of lead cast projectiles to make good cheap full power practice loads for .30 Cal., 358 cal., and .375 cal. ammunition.

    Just a few Ideas for lead casting.
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