Non-lead alloy bullets?

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Non-lead alloy bullets?

Post by beeser on Fri Nov 27, 2015 11:49 am

I did a quick search here to find out if there's been a discussion yet on non-lead alloy bullets.  None were found so I thought it might be a good idea to bring it up for discussion as it relates to Bullseye.  Apparently our Department of Defense, State of California, and others are attempting to replace lead based projectiles with more "green" components.  How will this affect Bullseye in the future?  What will these bullets look like?  How will they be made?  Etc?

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Re: Non-lead alloy bullets?

Post by james r chapman on Fri Nov 27, 2015 2:51 pm

Anything they develop, a California Condor or Coastal California gnatcatcher will choke on, thus continues the cycle...

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Re: Non-lead alloy bullets?

Post by Jerry Keefer on Fri Nov 27, 2015 3:00 pm

beeser wrote:I did a quick search here to find out if there's been a discussion yet on non-lead alloy bullets.  None were found so I thought it might be a good idea to bring it up for discussion as it relates to Bullseye.  Apparently our Department of Defense, State of California, and others are attempting to replace lead based projectiles with more "green" components.  How will this affect Bullseye in the future?  What will these bullets look like?  How will they be made?  Etc?
They have been in use for decades.. Police use fragmentation projectiles at some of their ranges in an effort to minimize HAZ clean up.. Powdered bronze/brass and other metals pressed together at high very pressures to form a solid.. The cost is very high.. The benefits minimal. Do gooders tried to implement the use of Green when I was operating the range.. I resisted and won..
Can you name one friend or associate that is disabled or dead from elevated BLL.?? I can't and I have been in this game for over 50 years.. 30 of which were in the PD..It's all a scheme ..

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Re: Non-lead alloy bullets?

Post by beeser on Fri Nov 27, 2015 4:11 pm

Whether you agree or disagree with those advocating the ban of lead component projectiles I believe the movement has gained enough traction to make the change inevitable.  It's not just California but at least two dozen other states including our Department of Defense involved in the change.  Some moving in that direction faster than others.  Here's a few questions to consider.

If the Department of Defense mandates a change to non-lead projectiles for small arms ammunition by 2018 will that have any influence on what ammunition is used at Camp Perry or matches held at other government facilities?

If non-lead bullets are universally required how will this affect the performance of existing firearms particularly those used for Bullseye?

What will be the best (in terms of accuracy) bullet design and/or alloy composition for non-lead bullets?

What affect will all of this have on hobbyist that make their own projectiles?  Think about this one because from what I've read it's more difficult and expensive to manufacture non-lead alloy bullets, possibly to the extent making it out of reach to the average hobbyist.  I can't imagine the large ammunition and projectile manufacturers offering much resistance to a change that will almost certainly present them a better marketing position.

Many of the ranges where we shoot are on government land.  If the Department of Defense completes the move to non-lead alloys for small firearms won't these facilities be close behind in embracing the change?

Lastly, do you think it's wise for the shooting community to resist the change from lead based projectiles considering the already uphill battle involving the possession of firearms in general?  Wouldn't we be better served by taking the offensive and embracing the change?

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Re: Non-lead alloy bullets?

Post by james r chapman on Fri Nov 27, 2015 4:36 pm

No, tell THEM who's the boss. Tell your representatives you, and your fellow shooters VOTE. Gather together in numbers, that's what they understand.

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Re: Non-lead alloy bullets?

Post by Jerry Keefer on Fri Nov 27, 2015 5:21 pm

beeser wrote:Whether you agree or disagree with those advocating the ban of lead component projectiles
Wouldn't we be better served by taking the offensive and embracing the change?
Beeser,
I am a non conformist..Especially when self appointed special interest experts decide that their will should be imposed upon the masses.
No..!!! I don't think we should embrace their agenda. This is a non political forum. If you'd like to hear more, you can PM me, as I have plenty of pent up frustrations with those saving me from myself, and the planet..

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Re: Non-lead alloy bullets?

Post by beeser on Fri Nov 27, 2015 6:27 pm

Jerry - I agree, this shouldn't be a political discussion.  As a small point, I wasn't suggesting we embrace their agenda but rather "embrace the change".  There's a difference.  I'll leave it to everyone to imagine the potential consequences of blindly resisting change.

Instead, why not treat it as a "what if" type of question.  The effects it could have on our shooting sport could be enormous.  Why not be prepared for it if or when it happens?

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Re: Non-lead alloy bullets?

Post by 3 gun Gus on Fri Nov 27, 2015 8:25 pm

I smell a Troll!

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Re: Non-lead alloy bullets?

Post by C.Perkins on Fri Nov 27, 2015 9:06 pm

The OP's question is not political in anyway if you stick to the root question.

If you look at the periodic table lead is what we have been using and works quite well for our bullseye/precision purposes.
Next step lighter on the periodic table is Bismuth which is more expensive and when melted and poured has issues with voids/air bubbles, also expands and becomes brittle when cooled which will not be a very accurate bullet.

Next up on the periodic table is silver.
Then up from there is more exotic/expensive metals.

Do you see where I am going here ?

I believe that if lead is banned there will be no more precision made bullets within a price range that we can afford to shoot in the quantities we do.

I have no problem shooting Bismuth shot for waterfowl or solid copper rifle bullets for hunting game.

We are talking precision shooting here and until someone comes up with an accurate replacement the shooting sports will be gone.

So; let us NOT let it happen.

Clarence

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Re: Non-lead alloy bullets?

Post by LenV on Sat Nov 28, 2015 1:28 am

I think were safe from any forced change soon. We have 5 million trap shooters on our side. Yea, I made up that number. Wink

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Re: Non-lead alloy bullets?

Post by beeser on Sat Nov 28, 2015 11:13 am

OldMaster65 wrote:I think were safe from any forced change soon. We have 5 million trap shooters on our side. Yea, I made up that number. Wink
Ironically, the clay shooting sports may be the first to be impacted by the restrictions on lead.  They may also be the first prepared for the change too.  Already fairly inexpensive alternative shot, chokes and loading machines to accommodate steel shot are available.  A problem with the clay sports is achieving BMP goals at ranges because of the wide dispersal of lead.  Pistol shots have the advantage of being more localized and easier to contain.

But back to the original question, what about lead free bullets for Bullseye?  I visited a commercial loading machine manufacturer recently and they were working on a machine to handle lead free bullets.  These were from a company that primarily supplies bullets to the military.  The bullets were 9mm and seemed really light by comparison.  Questions ....

If a bullet was so constructed either with composite materials or non-lead alloys and ended up lighter would accuracy be benefited with increased velocity?

If the velocity of the bullet increased to the point of no longer being subsonic would the design of the bullets typically used in Bullseye have to change?

Assuming the changes above what impact does this have on barrel design?

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Re: Non-lead alloy bullets?

Post by james r chapman on Sat Nov 28, 2015 11:18 am

Zinc bullets, extremely light, shedding velocity rapidly, and terribly frangible.

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Re: Non-lead alloy bullets?

Post by Wobbley on Sat Nov 28, 2015 11:23 am

Probably end up with a sintered or composite bullet.  These might be more accurate than what we have now.

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Re: Non-lead alloy bullets?

Post by LenV on Sat Nov 28, 2015 11:40 am

T&B bullets here in Oregon offers pure Antimony castings. They are a little more expensive but are able to achieve much higher velocities without fouling. I have no idea of their accuracy potential.

Len


Last edited by OldMaster65 on Sat Nov 28, 2015 1:08 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : spelling)

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Re: Non-lead alloy bullets?

Post by Fire Escape on Sat Nov 28, 2015 12:08 pm

OldMaster65 wrote:I think were safe from any forced change soon. We have 5 million trap shooters on our side. Yea, I made up that number. Wink

Probably a few hundred thousand waterfowl hunters thought that as well. They have adapted fairly well although the price of non-lead ammo is dramatically higher but initially they were forced to change with NO real acceptable solution already in existence. Damage to guns and birds lost/crippled to die later were common occurrences, but that did not matter to the 'no lead' advocates.
While I can offer no statistics to prove it, my belief is that by and large the movement to eliminate lead projectiles is rooted more in getting rid of guns than saving the environment.

Bruce

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