ASM Premium Russian Slug Moulds
In this article we’re going to take a look at a really cool slug mould, the Grizzly Paradox. This is one of the premium Russian slug moulds I mentioned in last week’s article, and so far I really like it.
Beginning with construction, the Paradox is a single-cavity aluminum mould made to some very exacting standards. The machine work is excellent, with crisp lines, venting, and a polished surface labeled with the gauge for easy identification. It also features a steel sprue plate with exposed hardware, making it very simple to operate; though I did find the pour-hole could do with a bit of honing. Moving on to the included handles, these are made from press-fit wood with brass crimps to hold them securely in place. The hinge mechanism is extremely smooth, and everything fits together snugly, assuring a positive lockup with almost no effort at all. The pins are aluminum with wooden grips, a recessed hole for the mounting hardware, and insulating bands to help keep the heat away from the operator.
One of the things that makes this mould so unique is that it has two different nose pins, allowing for the casting of two distinctly different slugs. Further sweetening the deal is the fact that both are included with this mould right out of the gate.
The Grizzly Paradox utilizes a single pin design that yields a deep hollow point. Looking at the build quality of the pin itself, you’ll notice that it’s been precision-machined to an almost glossy finish. This makes a huge difference in the extraction process as we’ll discuss a bit later.
The Grizzly Shock Paradox uses a three-sided pin reminiscent of an archery broad-head. Once again, the pin has been expertly made for maximum smoothness, and using an angled shape easing the extraction process.
After the standard de-greasing and hinge lubrication required for any new mould, I decided to take it out for a test drive. The very first thing I noticed with this mould was how incredibly fast it started cranking out fully-formed slugs. I’m no novice caster, but one-look at the complex pin designs left me convinced there’d be a long break in period, which is never fun.
I could not have been more wrong.
In the span of about ten minutes this mould was turning out perfect slugs 100% of the time. Moreover, the extraction of the pins, something I had anticipated would be trying at best, was almost comically simple. Almost no force at all was required to separate pin from slug, and thus there was no distortion or damage as can be the case with trickier or more stubborn designs. Anyone who’s ever worked with pinned moulds before will likely agree that they can add some serious time and effort to casting sessions of any length, but I can honestly say these were among the simplest casting slugs I’ve ever produced, averaging three-to-five per minute. Even my two-cavity Lyman sabot slug mould can’t touch that.
As with most of my slugs, I chose to water-quench and then dry-tumble them for maximum smoothness. If you watch the video above, I think you’ll agree, the finished product looks pretty good.
Starting with the Grizzly Paradox, what you end up with is a two-banded slug with one very large hollow point. Estimating weight is always a challenge for me since I work exclusively with wheel-weights, but using my alloy these weighed in at around 556gr, or roughly 1 1/4 oz.
Moving on to the Grizzly Shock Paradox slug, once again you get the same two-banded body style, but this time featuring a tri-sected hollow point designed to fragment on impact. Using my alloy, the Grizzly Shock weighs 574gr, or about 1 1/3 oz.
Both these slugs measured in at a diameter of 0.730″, making them too large for a conventional shotshell wad, but perfect for use with a buckshot wad, or gas seal and cushion/filler. Either of these would work extremely well as hunting rounds or with reduced powder charges as defensive loads where their expansive properties would help to minimize over-penetration. These slugs are also quite short, yielding predictably squat shot columns, particularly when coupled with a gas seal rather than a wad. Shot columns can of course be raised using filler wads, but if you’re so inclined, the small size of these slugs also makes them ideal for use in shorter hulls like 2″ mini shells.
This is the first time I’ve tried casting with one of my new ASM moulds, and it did not disappoint. It’s lightweight, well-built and incredibly easy to use. Pin-extraction is a dream, and once it’s hit operating-temperature, it runs flawlessly.
As a ‘binge-caster’, comfort and reliability are paramount to me. If you’re only going to perform a handful of day-long casting sessions per year, it’s imperative you have tools that can withstand that kind of abuse without leaving you feeling too drained to continue. The Grizzly Paradox is a mould I could run for hours and hours on end, which makes it perfect for my use-case scenario.
Best of all, unlike many specialty moulds, it’s also available in 20G, which is great for smaller folks like me who prefer the lighter recoil, but don’t want to forego the power or selection available from 12G.
For updates on the pricing and availability of these moulds, visit my project site and online shop at www.tatvcanada.com
As a long-time firearms enthusiast and reloader, I started TATVCanada (Tactical Advantage TV) back in 2016 to address what I saw as a lack of quality gun-content on YouTube. My goal was, and still is, to produce short, to-the-point media designed for folks looking for information on casting, reloading, firearms and accessories– without the fifteen extra minutes of fluff.
Whenever possible, I strive to incorporate empirical observation rather than relying on opinion, rumor or so-called ‘common knowledge’. In short, if I can’t prove it, or at least cite it, you won’t hear me repeat it. I do not perform paid endorsements or accept advertisements, so you can trust my opinions are my own.
I also believe strongly not just in the right to own and use firearms, but the responsibility we have to operate and store them safely that comes with that right. With that in mind, you won’t find me making home-made guns out of plumbing supplies or dual-wielding automatic shotguns on an ATV. In my opinion, that kind of nonsense has no place in the public forum, and does a great disservice to those of us working to portray the firearms community as what it is; a responsible group of law-abiding sportsmen and women dedicated to the pursuit of a legitimate hobby.