Sunday, December 7, 2014

Cold Weather and Some Free Time

That must mean it's time to cast. This started with a 25 lb. bag of #8 shot. No, I didn't melt it. I had gotten it with some other lead and it seemed a shame to just melt it and I don't currently reload for shotguns.

The guy I gave it to brought me a box of scrap lead, mostly old large fishing weights. Then I had an old dive belt, some odd lots of bullets I would never load, and a large coffee can of sprue plate lead and scraps. So I did this.

Get the kettle hot and melt the lead. Add some linotype to harden it a bit. Flux and skim. Then ladle the lead into the ingot molds. So I have the old camp stove hot, everything set up outside, and I'm dressed in heavy canvas pants, leather boots, long sleeves, a welder's apron, gloves, a cotton hat and a faceshield.

Well, that all goes pretty smoothly. I'm already dressed, might as well heat up the electric pot while I'm at it. I can make some Elmer Keith 245 grain .452s.


I like those 245s, good stuff in .45Colt cases, but it's not something I shoot a lot of. What I'm actually I was low on was 200 grain semi-wadcutters, my regular bullet for .45ACP. My mold for those is an old Lee aluminum 6 cavity. It rolls right along, but I have never got it to just drop all six when you open the mold, I have to whack the back of the handle to get them to fall. Nonetheless, this is production from yesterday.

I water drop them and I have to let them dry, which is why they are all on an old towel. I will get to spend some time in the coming days pulling the handle on the Lubrisizer.



Arthur said...

A friend of my just started using frankford arsenal's Drop Out mold release and says it's magic.

We've both been using lee aluminum molds and had good results with the standard match-smoking routine. He had one oddball caliber that he could only find in a cast iron mold and until he stumbled onto this he was having a bear of a time getting decent casts.

He also had one of the older lee aluminum buckshot molds that just would not drop. He tried the mold release on it and says they drop right out now.

Haven't tried myself yet though.

Ajdshootist said...

I would hate to try and work out how many bullets i have cast over the years,i have so many bullet moulds in so many calibers ive lost count had acsess to tonnes of linotype monotype and scrap lead my family business was a printers and i went home with my car well overloaded with sacks of used print metals on a regular basis,my nickname was for many years The Master Caster,even now i dont cast any longer i have never got rid of my moulds some of them now very rare,must sort them out soon,started casting in 1971 only stopped a few years ago.

markshere2 said...

I had lots of trouble making Lee 6 holers let go of the boolits...

Until I got my RCBS bottom pour Melter.

Getting ( and keeping) those big pieces of aluminum hot enough was hard until I kicked up the lead temp a bit and was able to fill the cavities rapidly.

Once the mould comes up to heat - they drop nicely.