Coating the bullet in wax

Discussion in 'The Ammo & Reloading Forum' started by bizy, May 31, 2009.

  1. bizy

    bizy New Member

    Dec 17, 2008
    Marlow, Ok
    If you coat the bullet in a thin coat of wax, would it help protect the barrel against lead buildup and other corrosive things?
  2. Celraysoda

    Celraysoda New Member

    May 14, 2009
    Northern New Jersey
    Not sure but worth a test. I think it may lead to loading issues in a semi-auto or the force and heat upon firing vaporizes the wax.

    How about moly coating? What does that do?

  3. zfk55

    zfk55 New Member

    Mar 19, 2009
    Lost Prairie Montana
    Do you mean a FMJ? If so, then no. Alox is a lubricant intended for cast projectiles, but its going to make a real mess with FMJs. Did you mean Alox or some other kind of wax? Alox isn't really a wax anyway. Some shooters like Moly coated projectiles, but those coated bullets have a whole world of controversy of their own.

  4. bizy

    bizy New Member

    Dec 17, 2008
    Marlow, Ok
    Not FMJ.. Just the full lead bullet. I notice some of the cast bullets have the lubricate, (some times blue or red). And the rest of the bullet has a waxy feel. And some of the 22s have a waxy feel.
  5. Alpo

    Alpo Well-Known Member

    Feb 3, 2007
    NW Florida
    You're talking about two different kinds of bullets.

    Normal lead bullets, like you cast or you buy, for reloading, are what's called "inside lubricated". The lubrication, which is usually some type of wax, is either packed in grooves on the side, or thinly applied to the (usually knurled) straight side (called the "bearing surface") of the bullet. This part of the bullet is down inside the case. That's why it's "inside lubricated". The lube is inside the cartridge case.

    22s, on the other hand, are outside lubed heel bullets. The bullet nose is the same diameter as the outside of the cartridge case. There is a "step-down" (the heel) that fits inside the case. The bearing surface of this bullet is outside the cartridge case, and that's where the lube is applied. That's why 22s have that waxy feel. They are wax covered.

    Applying wax to the nose of a normal lead bullet would do nothing, as it does not touch the barrel. All wax on the outside of a bullet does is attract dirt. That's the main reason that ammo companies quit using heel bullets, over a hundred years ago. The inside lubed bullet is just a better design. I have no idea why they still make 22s with a heel, unless it is extremely cheaper.

  6. dardascastbullets

    dardascastbullets New Member

    Dec 21, 2008
    Essexville, MI
    Coating the bullet(s) with a 'wax' will not by itself 'protect the barrel against lead buildup and other corrosive things'. The lubricant that is forced into the lubrication ring(s) must have the correct properties upfront to lubricate the bullet during its flight through the barrel.

    To avoid lead buildup, you should consider slugging your barrel(s). The ideal cast bullet diameter is 0.001" over the bore diameter. This will provide you with the proper bullet 'fit'.

    I am not sure what you are referring to when you state 'other corrosive things'. Maybe you could expand on that point.
  7. bizy

    bizy New Member

    Dec 17, 2008
    Marlow, Ok
    I was just asking about things to do, to get the longest life out of a barrel. My son-in-law has just starting to reload and I was just curious about different questions he asked me..

    Thanks guys/gals for your input..
  8. woolleyworm

    woolleyworm Well-Known Member

    Feb 23, 2009
    SW Fort Worth
    Longest life out of a barrel can be had with proper cleaning, taking care of the crown and feeding it quality ammo............ aside from just plain never shooting it. :D
  9. bizy

    bizy New Member

    Dec 17, 2008
    Marlow, Ok
    Ya, sorry.. I did not make myself very clear.. I am talking about bullets cast by myself. Plain ole lead bullets. Making my own cast bullets is just another thing I want to.

    Wax/Lubrication: What wax would you suggest or what lube?

    I see on the web I can get different combinations of lead to tin, 100% lead, 80% lead & 20% tin. I will not be using hot loads. Some where around minimum load or less.

    The way the ammo and reloading supplies are drying up, I think we will all be hard up in the very near future.

    God Bless All and thanks in advance..
  10. Alpo

    Alpo Well-Known Member

    Feb 3, 2007
    NW Florida
    There are, basically, four types of bullet lubes.

    Hard lubes. This is the red or blue or orange waxy/crayon looking stuff in store-bought cast bullets. It is great for that purpose, as it does not come out of the grooves as the box of bullets is bounced around during shipping. It is also extremely greasy when fired, and makes your gun dirtier. I see no use for it, with home-cast bullets, but lots of people seem to like it. I think it's because, "It must be good, because the professional casters use it".

    Soft lubes. These, mostly, have an alox base. The lube is quite soft, and comes out of the grooves fairly easily. This is not a problem if you lube your bullets and put them in a box and put the box on a shelf until it is time to use it. And if some of the lube does come off, you can take a bit in you hand and rub it across the groove, and it will fill the hole (you can't do that with hard lube). It has a consistancy somewhat like axle grease, and it will fill the grooves, just like hand-packing a wheel bearing. Can be a bit messy to work with, though.

    Black powder lubes. These are very soft, and are designed to keep the powder fouling soft. They are not needed, for smokeless powder loads, although they will work fine (you still need lube for smokeless loads, you just don't need to pay the extra money for black powder lube). They are also more expensive than the lubes made for smokeless loads. I know of people that make their own, using various combinations of beeswax and crisco and/or olive oil.

    There is also the newest one. Liquid alox. I've been using it for several years. It is quite easy to use, although it, too, can be a bit messy.

    Then there are the people that use strange stuff. I know of a feller that uses boiled linseed oil, from the hardware store. Says it is the best bullet lube he has ever found, and is waaaaay lots cheaper than the stuff the loading companies sell.
  11. johnlives4christ

    johnlives4christ Former Guest

    Apr 28, 2008
    alpo, howdy sir... i find your postings on this very informative. the thing about 22 bullets being heeled is a great question, and i too kinda wonder why it's really the only heeled bullet there is. the only reason i could think of is perhaps it's because there are so many guns chambered for it, even at the turn of of the century that they figured they just couldnt stop? maybe it is cheaper, beats me
  12. GMFWoodchuck

    GMFWoodchuck New Member

    Oct 9, 2008
    Binghamton, NY
    There are too many .22 rfs out there to change it.
  13. bedwards

    bedwards New Member

    Mar 1, 2009
    the thing about 22 method, IT WORKS. Have you ever seen a leaded 22 barrel?

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