Another Casting question

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Another Casting question

Post by lablover on 8/20/2017, 6:20 am

I know some here cast for the bullseye ammo they shoot.  I've begun casting and thought I had it right until I went to cast Boolits and read I was not doing it right.  My Noe 200gr SWC was putting out great looking bullets but I was snapping the spru plate open too soon and have those craters at the bottom of the bullets.  Only have a few hundred of these and after seeing what I did wrong tried again with much better success.  Would you recycle those few hundred back into the pot and start over or would you shoot them for practice?  Everything else on the bullet is awesome, clean sharp driving bands etc.

I'd be curious how picky you get for your bullets.  I hear you could shoot rocks to a 1911 45 act and get accurate shots..LOL.

I find with my alloy at about 700 deg and the mould at 460 deg I have to wait a good 15-20 sec before opening that spru plate to get clean bases.  Any longer I get hard to ope and shorter I get the tear out crater .

Looking forward to how OCD I need to be..and yes I have it bad!

Thanks All

Joe

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Re: Another Casting question

Post by Wobbley on 8/20/2017, 7:15 am

Shoot them for practice.  An early sprue cut doesn't cause that much scatter.

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Re: Another Casting question

Post by noylj on 8/20/2017, 8:54 am

If the base is completely filled out, even nasty wrinkled bullets shoot just as well at 25 yards as perfect bullets. To me, an "early sprue cut" doesn't cause any increase scatter, even over a machine rest.
Why not try them yourself, compared to your perfect bullets, and SEE if there is any difference? You learn by experience. You can determine for yourself the variables that really make a difference and you can concentrate on those, and not meaningless variables that don't make your load any better.
Personally, if you are going to be OCD and not test things, why not just go with swaged bullets and be done with it?
I pretty much gave up casting when I could no longer find lead cheap enough to make it a viable option given Zero swaged lead 200gn SWC bullets for $154/2000 (7.7 cents/bullet) from Powder Valley.

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Re: Another Casting question

Post by jmdavis on 8/20/2017, 9:42 am

Cast bullets give you control over the diameter through alloy and mound choices. Zero is a good bullet, but others may work better in some guns. It doesn't matter at 25, but it can at 50.


Last edited by jmdavis on 8/20/2017, 10:55 am; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Another Casting question

Post by lablover on 8/20/2017, 10:18 am

Outstanding info.  I plan to dest them big time.  I have a batch of what I think is PERFECT bullets and a batch thats not so perfect.  I plan to use 4.0 of bullseye with these and try them all at the same distance and see how it all turns out.

As far as buying bullets... Having several hundred pounds of w/w in ingots I got from a fella who gave up on casting for a song..Well, I' gonna be casting for awhile.  I bought the ingots a few years back and now being in a financial bind a bit..Well, casting it is.  If it gives me range time so be it.

I will test mine against some Dardis I have as well as some Swaged Zero's.

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Re: Another Casting question

Post by noylj on 8/20/2017, 10:57 am

As I said, after I could no longer find cheap lead, I went commercial and found Zero and Precision Bullets.
Prior to that, I cast H&G #68 and RCBS 452-201-KT, with the RCBS being slightly more accurate in MY guns.

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Re: Another Casting question

Post by lablover on 8/20/2017, 12:01 pm

noylj wrote:As I said, after I could no longer find cheap lead, I went commercial and found Zero and Precision Bullets.
Prior to that, I cast H&G #68 and RCBS 452-201-KT, with the RCBS being slightly more accurate in MY guns.
  I may have to give that RCBS mold a try..Thank you

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Re: Another Casting question

Post by 10sandxs on 8/20/2017, 8:39 pm

I cast with three 5 cavity noe 200 gr molds. In my younger years I'd cut sprue too soon and get cratered bases. They shot fine as the imperfections are close to the axis of rotation so they affect bullet stability to a lesser degree. The bigger issue you have will be lead smear which will build up between the sprue plate and the top of the mold, this will cause galling over time with an aluminium mold. i highly recommend casting with multiple molds to allow adequate cooling.

I'd be interested to see what you bullets weigh, mine throw at 215+ gr, no matter what I do with alloy and/or temperature.

I also recommend powder coating overy traditional lube. Way cleaner guns, and loading dies with no loss of a accuracy, and no sticky fingers after a loading session.

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Re: Another Casting question

Post by lablover on 8/21/2017, 4:54 am

10sandxs wrote:I cast with three 5 cavity noe 200 gr molds. In my younger years I'd cut sprue too soon and get cratered bases. They shot fine as the imperfections are close to the axis of rotation so they affect bullet stability to a lesser degree. The bigger issue you have will be lead smear which will build up between the sprue plate and the top of the mold, this will cause galling over time with an aluminium mold. i highly recommend casting with multiple molds to allow adequate cooling.

I'd be interested to see what you bullets weigh, mine throw at 215+ gr, no matter what I do with alloy and/or temperature.

I also recommend powder coating overy traditional lube. Way cleaner guns, and loading dies with no loss of a accuracy, and no sticky fingers after a loading session.
Mine cast at 215+  as well.

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Re: Another Casting question

Post by 10sandxs on 8/21/2017, 7:38 am

Ok, at least I'm not crazy... scratch that... well at least my molds cast where they should

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Re: Another Casting question

Post by lablover on 8/21/2017, 3:01 pm

I will say my bases are driving me nuts..Not really cratered but porous right in the center..I tried waiting longer so they wouldn't tear out and still no luck.  Tried the spru plate on wet rag right before you open the plate and things got a little bit better.  

I think I need to stop worrying about as I'm only gonna use these for practice and the 25 yard line.

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Re: Another Casting question

Post by 10sandxs on 8/21/2017, 4:39 pm

Try pouring a larger sprue.  As the metal cools shrinks and if you have a light sprue it can cause dimple right in the middle of the base.

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Re: Another Casting question

Post by JKR on 8/21/2017, 6:04 pm

Rob,

Just wanted to say that I have that mold too. It drops at 215 just like yours. I tried everything I knew to lighten it up but no go. Shoots fine just as it is.

Jim

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Re: Another Casting question

Post by lablover on 8/21/2017, 6:17 pm

Good to know how it shoots..If you can post a pic of your bases that would be great.  I think I have it figured out..Cutting spru too early so I tried the wet rag trick...Works, HOWEVER it lowers my mold temp so my fillout is not as good.  I'll try again tomorrow and get the mold a bit hotter and cast faster.

I have to think like others have said here...A little tear out in the base aint a big thing to worry about.

10sandXS...I am already pouring a pretty good size spru puddle

Good thing about all this is I can just dump em back in the pot and keep trying ..wooohoooo

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Re: Another Casting question

Post by JKR on 8/21/2017, 6:52 pm

Well, like Rob suggested, I cast with two molds. Once you get them warmed up and going good things seem to come out well. It can be done with one but takes patience to wait for it to cool. Actually, I sort my bullets. The ones that have the nice clean bases are long line. The torn and pitted bases are short line. You can shoot a pretty nasty looking bullet at 25 and still group well. Compared to casting for blackpowder long range rifle, this is a piece of cake!

Jim

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Re: Another Casting question

Post by lablover on 8/21/2017, 6:58 pm

Thanks Jim..Your last post has helped my mental view on all this base stuff....

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Re: Another Casting question

Post by 10sandxs on 8/21/2017, 8:33 pm

Lablover, if it makes you feel better, I've done a lot of ransom rest testing with weight sorted bullets. Even the groups shot with the extreme spreads (+/-2gr) were not noticeably different...

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Re: Another Casting question

Post by lablover on 8/22/2017, 4:50 pm

10sandxs wrote:Lablover,   if it makes you feel better, I've done a lot of ransom rest testing with weight sorted bullets. Even the groups shot with the extreme spreads (+/-2gr) were not noticeably different...
WOW

Yes, I'm better now...LOL

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Re: Another Casting question

Post by PMcfall on 8/24/2017, 8:05 am

Lablover
What alloy are you using?
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Re: Another Casting question

Post by lablover on 8/24/2017, 10:02 am

Ww and 2% tin

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Re: Another Casting question

Post by PMcfall on 8/24/2017, 1:26 pm

You should be good to go with that.  The reason I asked was that I have had sprue's tear in some alloys with a high antimony content.
Phil
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Re: Another Casting question

Post by DonaldT on 9/30/2017, 4:14 am

I usually cast with 2 molds at a time. When I have filled up the second I put this down and then empty the first one, I have never had a problem with the sprue lifting the base when I cut. The time I use to fill the other mold seems to be just about right for cooling down time. 

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