You experienced bullet casters out there, please offer as much advice as you want to. I value your opinions!
Like an ole pro ! I just got the .50cal real mould for my Rem 700 ML and I went thru the same struggle and found two pours is better, I noticed your angle as the lead hits the sprue is different and works better I will try that next time
Thanks MCK11. Glad my trials, tribulations and mistakes were of value to you! Maybe it wasn’t all in vain after all.
Great looking projectiles! I cast for 30-30, .50 cal muzzleloader and 7.62×39. Once you get the hang of it it is great fun. I like to cast on the hotside. I found with the frosty bullets my (powder coating) I got much better adhesion. Looks like your on the right track. Also, rather than running the hot plate to heatthe mold, just put the corner of the mold right in the molten alloy. Happy casting brother.
Thanks for the encouragement avidhuntr1016. Do frosty bullets affect terminal ballistics or performance in any way or is it just a cosmetic issue?
Sorry for the delayed response! I haven’t found them to shoot any different than a perfect shiney cast bullet. Again 30-30, .50 cal smoke pole, and a 7.62×39, we ain’t reaching out very far with these calibers. The 30-30 is what I’ve shot the most. Decent mushrooming shape, and ok weight retention, some still have the gas checks some are gone. Kills deer, thats what I like about them. Get on the powder coating. Its cost effective, great results and fun as heck, never mind your rounds will look cool! Cheers, great chatin’ with ya.
If at first you don’t succeed, try try again ! Nice job 🙂
Thanks, NickJ! Turned out to be a great experience.
You will find a bottom pour pot so much more useful. Get the larger Lee pot. IMO the capacity makes a big difference for efficiency and also for fitting oddly shaped ingots in. I don’t see anything in the other brands of casting pots which comes close to justifying the price differential. Also cast hot, and keep your mold HOT.
p.s. I wouldn’t call that a thick sprue. If you keep every thing much hotter, not only is the whole thing faster, but your fill out is maxed out, and your standard deviations on cast weight and size will shrink.
My lead temperature ran at around 710 degrees. What do you recommend?
I like somewhere in the 800f ish range. basically hot enough to get frosty bullets. You lose a little metal to oxidization this way but your speed and consistency improves. The higher heat means it takes longer for the bullets to solidify, if you aren’t also cooling the mold, so people who don’t cool, think it is faster to keep the melt temperature closer to the solidification point. This like everything is controversial. Look up an article/ old thread on cast boolits called “the Bruce B method.” He details how to get a near perfected process for efficiency and consistency.… Read more »
Wow! Thanks for the comprehensive advice, GFZS. I’ll definitely check out the Bruce B method, too. Fortunately, I must have a good mold because every bullet fell out of it’s cavity with nothing more than a shake of the handle. Great idea about pre-warming the ingots and keeping the pot full of lead. I let the pot empty out before I put any ingots in. I can see where your method would be much faster and more efficient. At this point, I’m still in the “therapeutic/satisfying” stage. I’m sure I’ll be looking for productivity to improve very soon. Your tips… Read more »
If you set your current pot to somewhere around 500*f, I bet it would be perfect for preheating ingots for your forthcoming bottom pour rig. I like to have all my materials on my left, and my finished product on the right so everything keeps moving in the same direction. Same for the reloading press. I also find I want a lamp pointed at the underside of the casting pot. It makes it easier to see what your lead is doing, even in sunlight.
This is an older Mini Mag that does not have an adjustable temperature dial. It has a fixed temperature thermostat. I’d probably use my hot plate to preheat the ingots. It will heat up to 700 degrees.
Thanks for the good advice, GFZS. I’m likely to move up to a Lee bottom pour pot at some point in the future. Would like to master the “art” of casting with this set up first. You’re right, the prices of the Lyman and RCBS bottom pour pots are ridiculously high compared to the Lee.