Bullet swaging at home

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Bullet swaging at home

Post by jmdavis on 10/4/2017, 9:18 am

Does anyone swage their own bullets? While the possibility of an H&N order moves forward, I am considering a Corbin 7/8x14 setup to do my own .32 HBWCs. Has anyone done this? How difficult was it to get good bullets? What did you use for lube? I would think that tulle lube would be good with the exception of the issue of tumbling soft bullets. 

I will also be testing some Saeco 323 cast. I have many lbs of BHN5 and BHN9 ingots that I could use for cast. I am also wondering if a softer cast solid bullet might not be more stable in a 1/10 twist barrel due to the shorter length as compared to the hollow base. 

I am still waiting on my order of Speer 98's at this time as well. 

Mike Davis
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Re: Bullet swaging at home

Post by james r chapman on 10/4/2017, 10:01 am

I've made swaging dies for my .442 American Budog.

I used to make 3/4 jacketed .44 bullets in a Clymer swaging die.

Generally you roll the swaged bullet between to files to create ridges then I pan lubed them. Works for the 50 or so obsolete bullets I'd make.

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Re: Bullet swaging at home

Post by jglenn21 on 10/4/2017, 10:16 am

I swaged quite a few bullets on a Corbin Mini  M style press a number of years ago..these were jacketed bullets and a few swaged lead pistol bullets .. It definitely gives you an appreciation for what the factories put out. we were doing bonded bullets in the 70s with copper jackets(soft)

It's a learned process, but excellent bullets can be done.
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Re: Bullet swaging at home

Post by fc60 on 10/4/2017, 11:54 am

Greetings,

I have been swaging my bullets since the 1990's.

I use a Corbin CSP-1 press. Sturdy enough to swage 45 caliber bullets.

With the H&N 32 Bullets getting harder to find, I made a set of dies that duplicate the H&N profile. They shoot rather well.

Groups fired from a Haemmerli SP-20 barrel mounted in a mechanical fixture.

Distance is 50 yards.

Chronograph is 20 feet from muzzle.




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Re: Bullet swaging at home

Post by jmdavis on 10/4/2017, 12:19 pm

Dave, 

Were these .314 or .312? Would a CSP dedicated press be required?
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Re: Bullet swaging at home

Post by Jack H on 10/4/2017, 1:19 pm

Off BE topic, but bullet swage never the less. 
Long time ago my Dad had a Winchester .401 Selfloader.  Bullets were hard to find even then.  A gunsmith made a tapered push through die to swage jacketed .41 pistol bullets down to the .401 size.  It worked perfectly with pure lanolin lube.
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Re: Bullet swaging at home

Post by Wobbley on 10/4/2017, 2:12 pm

Be prepared for some tedious work....

Most swaged lead bullets are made on machines like this one.  When these machines aren’t making swaged bullets, they’re usually making bullet cores..

https://youtu.be/Nqm8Y0Ac2j8

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Re: Bullet swaging at home

Post by fc60 on 10/4/2017, 3:02 pm

Greetings,

The bullets tested were 0.314".

Corbin has updated their presses since I bought mine.

This link shows a press similar in size to mine. My press is now obsolete.

http://www.corbins.com/csp-1.htm

Yes, swaging is a lot of labor. However, the results are worthwhile to me.

Cheers,

Dave

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Re: Bullet swaging at home

Post by james r chapman on 10/4/2017, 4:47 pm

For .32 I'd think a 7/8 die in a old Rockchucker would work fine.

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Re: Bullet swaging at home

Post by Wobbley on 10/4/2017, 7:34 pm

Here are a couple of videos of a guy making 38 wadcutters (two parts)

https://youtu.be/ts6hNJZB0m0

https://youtu.be/XgHsGuDWveo

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Re: Bullet swaging at home

Post by JKR on 10/5/2017, 6:13 am

A question for Dave. 

I shot some of the swaged bullets sent to me by Greg. They are absolutely equal to H&N's. 

Would you be willing to share the specs for your die? I have family in the machine tool business and I'm wondering if I could have one made.

Jim

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Re: Bullet swaging at home

Post by fc60 on 10/5/2017, 12:35 pm

Greetings Jim,

I took an H&N bullet and washed all the grease off of it.

I next pushed the bullet into a bullet sizing die, leaving room at the hollow base for a casting.

Using Cerro-Safe chamber casting material, I poured a casting of the hollow base.

From here, it is the exercise of measuring the radii, taper, and edge margins of the bullet base.

Cheers,

Dave

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Re: Bullet swaging at home

Post by Chris Miceli on 10/5/2017, 8:09 pm

fc60 wrote:Greetings Jim,

I took an H&N bullet and washed all the grease off of it.

I next pushed the bullet into a bullet sizing die, leaving room at the hollow base for a casting.

Using Cerro-Safe chamber casting material, I poured a casting of the hollow base.

From here, it is the exercise of measuring the radii, taper, and edge margins of the bullet base.

Cheers,

Dave
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Re: Bullet swaging at home

Post by fc60 on 10/6/2017, 10:26 am

"Dave Wilson the blacksmith"

Incorrect. A Blacksmith and Gunsmith are Trades achieved via an Apprenticeship.

I have served none of the above.

I do possess a Journeyman's card as a Tool and Die Maker.

Cheers,

Dave

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Re: Bullet swaging at home

Post by fc60 on 10/25/2017, 11:26 am

Greetings,

Took the swaging to a new approach.

I swaged some "hard cast" 32 bullets into the same profile as the bullets I used above.

Result was dismal. Severe Leading in the throat of my Hämmerli 280 after 100 shots.


"Old Caster" has it right. Best results are with soft Lead bullets.


Cheers,


Dave

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