My Advancements in Casting

Joshua

Active Member
Thanks to all you guys with the decades of experience. You share it freely and I appreciate it.

When I was in my early twenties I apprenticed as a production blacksmith. This community of casters reminds me of the blacksmith community. The old Master Smiths passionately wanted to hand down their craft knowledge. The conferences I attended were full of stories, tradition, and comradery.

I figure that over the last two years I have easily spent ten to twenty hours a week digesting all the cast bullet information I could. I read a lot more than I post. And, if I’m being honest I read more than I cast, reload, and shoot.

Thanks for putting the mold down long enough to type in all this good stuff.

Josh
 

Mitty38

Seeker of knowlege
These guys are great here. Been here a short time myself. Since I work in a foundry, I originally thought there was nothing much they could teach me about casting. Just came here for load info. Boy was I wrong.
Lead tin alloy is it own special bread, and these guys know it well. If not for them and their contributions I would have cast nothing but muzzle loaded balls. They know how to make the magic work with lead alloys., both in casting and in shooting.
Many different ideas for problems encountered.
Some have been doing it for years, some Maybe not. But all contribute their knowledge from the many different walks of life they represent. Helping each one gain a better understanding. The help I have received here has gone beyond just knowledge. Even kept me safe when I was reaching too far too soon.
This truly is a cornucopia of helpful, concerned, individuals. Yourself Included.
Emmett
 
Last edited:

popper

Well-Known Member
run out of pre-made home made bullets at about age 80 Plus all the boxes of jacketed stuff in the cabinet - not too many years to go. Componenets just about right (except for primers).
 

Matt

Member
I started with a single burner propane stove using a one pound coffee can for a pot. My ladle was a plumbers ladle my grandfather gave me. The molds I used were single cavities that I could borrow one at a time from a neighbor/casting mentor. I can remember how thrilled I was when the bullets would come out of the mold perfect. My mentor taught me to cut sprues back into the pot. I don’t do that anymore. Anything that looked like lead was melted into bullets. Everything was lubed in a pan with a homemade crisco/beeswax lube and a cartridge case used as cutter. Now I have a pot for “soft” lead and one for “harder”. I have a lot of molds including three single cavities my mentor eventually gave me. I treasure these. I preheat my molds on a hot plate. I’ve gotten a little more sophisticated on alloy components. I have two RCBS lubri-sizers. One with a paraffin/Vaseline/two stroke oil lube for low velocity bullets (to save on beeswax as my source retired from bee keeping) and the other filled with Ben’s Red for “high” velocity rifle and “magnum” revolver. I also use Ben’s liquid for .38 wadcutters and .45 semi-wadcutters. I’ve tried powder coating but I’m not convinced that it’s a replacement for conventional lubing methods. I’m thinking about getting a lead thermometer. Maybe. I learn something new and helpful from sites like this and people I’ve met through the various sites regularly. I began shooting some repeatable sub 1MOA 100 yard rifle groups just this year after almost 50 years of casting. I think the internet has been the greatest boon to casting in my lifetime once I was able to sort out the wheat from the chaff. There’s a lot more wheat on this site than chaff. I’m still thrilled watching perfect bullets dropping from the mold.
 

dale2242

Active Member
Matt, I think you will appreciate a thermometer.
My bottom draw is a Lee Drip-O-Matic and I know which setting that is the right setting for casting temp.
What I like about it is it tells me when my melt is up to temp when starting a casting session and when adding alloy to the pot.
Jordanka16, I think that going from a Coleman white gas stove to a propane stove to heat my melt was one of my best advancements.
Having to pump that thing up just when everything was right was a PITA. To each his own
 

Matt

Member
Dale I think I agree with you. I keep both my pots set to “casting temp” on the temp dial and do not move them. It takes forever to heat up and I still have no idea what the actual temperature is. I just know in my harder alloy pot I get very consistent .30 caliber bullets after a lot of trial and error with the temp knob. Guess I’ll do a little internet shopping today. Thanks for the shove.
 

BliksemE300

New Member
I started out in the early 80's in a country far away from the USA. I had read about casting & reloading and mail ordered a Lee 10# pot, a whack-a-mole Lee set for 9mmP and a Lyman mold with handles. Fast forward to today and I have a workshop full of tools etc, the center piece of my casting is a 70# pot that is PID controlled. (I have a 50# unit as well that is used for 20:1 only.) For those interested how I did it is on my vanity website here: www.bliksemdonder.com
 

Petrol & Powder

Active Member
I started out making RB's for Cap & Ball revolvers and that just fueled my interest.
My first sessions were with a small iron pot over a camp fire and a ladle. I wanted to prove to myself that I could do it.
That quickly evolved into a single burner gas stove (Huge Step Up ! )
Eventually I moved to an electric bottom pour pot and put the ladle away.

I've read reloading manuals and the literature that accompanies equipment but the best source of knowledge has consistently been from other casters.

The wealth of knowledge shared by people that cast/reload ammunition is one of the best parts of this hobby. There's a lot of hard earned knowledge that is freely shared.
 

Rockydoc

Active Member
Awesome melter, BliksemE300. Quite a setup for sausage making. I was a butcher in my younger days. Worked the kill floor in the slaughter house, Made sausage, bacon, hams. Worked the boning room as well.

What is that language, Dutch?
 

BliksemE300

New Member
Awesome melter, BliksemE300. Quite a setup for sausage making. I was a butcher in my younger days. Worked the kill floor in the slaughter house, Made sausage, bacon, hams. Worked the boning room as well.

What is that language, Dutch?
My mother tongue is Afrikaans, related to Dutch. One of the few things I miss from South Africa is the local independent butcher shop with the locally made farmers sausage. That is why I started to make sausage, to feed myself with what I like. I got tired of inadequate equipment and things evolved to what I have today.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: Ian