24hourcampfire.com
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Hop To
Finally casting again! #16230856 07/06/21
Joined: Nov 2004
Posts: 6,208
B
Burleyboy Offline OP
Campfire Tracker
OP Offline
Campfire Tracker
B
Joined: Nov 2004
Posts: 6,208
I finally got my casting station set up last night and did the first casting I've done since about high school days. I was never big into it and hated lubing and sizing bullets so I didn't do it much. Powder coating renewed my interest.

When I moved about 3 years ago I melted down several buckets of wheel weights I had before the move. I did the turkey fryer burner with a Dutch oven on it and used thermometers to try to keep the heat around 600 and tried to scope any zinc ww's out before they melted in. I keep wondering if I melted some by accident so last night after getting set up I stayed up late and tried to cast some 310g 44 mag bullets with a new lee 2 cavity mold.

I feel like I'm learning from the start again. It took a while to get some wrinkle free bullets and when I did most were really frosted. I kept trying to get the alloy temp down but in the end I think it was a mold too hot that frosted them.

I also learned my new lee four 20 pot drips a lot no mater what I do. Then I learned that beeswax sucks for lubing the sprue plate and alignment pins. I also learned than setting a hot mold on an old lacquered wood desk will instantly corrode the bottom of the mold in a big way. I only managed a few hundred bullets in a few hours. The mold started having problems closing all the way and several bullets went right back in the pot.

I went and bought some synthetic 2 cycle oil today for mold lube but I'm worried it's too late for my 44 mold. It's just not working well and galled some on top after using old bees wax. I may try a different mold tonight with the synthetic oil.

I'd like to powder coat some soon so I'm looking for recommendations on what kind of oven, and where to get a few pounds of good powder and what colors work well.

I think my ww lead is going to work OK. I had to Flux it a few times to get more junk out but it seemed to flow well and filled out the mold once clean and hot. I'm not sure how much zinc if any it has in it. I also have several hundred pounds of mono type I bought from an old local print shop. I had it xray gunned and it's 73% lead and the rest is tin and antimony. It's really hard but I'm thinking about mixing maybe 10% in with my ww stuff. If just air cooled for now but wonder about water dropping them.

I'll try to keep my alloy around 600 tonight and not get the mold too hot and see if I can get less frosting on the bullets. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. I'm basically trying to start at the start again.

Bb


Last edited by Burleyboy; 07/06/21.
BP-B2

Re: Finally casting again! [Re: Burleyboy] #16231257 07/07/21
Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 3,026
Ole_270 Offline
Campfire Guide
Offline
Campfire Guide
Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 3,026
I generally run a bit softer than ww in my 45s, both acp and Colt. Range lead collected at a local range has tested an average of 0.4 Sn, 1.4 Sb and works well with some added tin. I usually cast at around 720 degrees according to the PID on my lyman pot. Be aware that many thermometers aren't all that accurate. Frosting for me is usually from the mold being too hot, slow your casting rate or rub the aluminum mold on a damp cloth to cool it some. That said, some say frosting helps PC adhere to the bullets.
You can get good PC from Smoke4320 on one of the cast bullet sites, or Eastwood powder on amazon. Powder by the Pound sells small lots to the public as well. Be warned that many powders won't "shake and bake" but need a electrostatic spray gun. I've been using lots of Eastwood high gloss clear, it works great.

Re: Finally casting again! [Re: Burleyboy] #16231965 07/07/21
Joined: Nov 2004
Posts: 6,208
B
Burleyboy Offline OP
Campfire Tracker
OP Offline
Campfire Tracker
B
Joined: Nov 2004
Posts: 6,208
Thanks, I may have some zinc in my alloy. Last night I tried again and only a few of the first wrinkled casts weren't heavily frosted. I did the damp cloth to cool the mold and casted all the way down to 500 degrees by my Lyman thermometer. It was cool enough at one point the alloy stopped flowing and started to thicken. Even at that temp with a rag cooled mold it was frosty looking bullets from 2 different molds.

I also casted some as high as 700 plus and cooled the mold and still frosty. It kind of looked galvanized so I thought zinc. I added 1 pound of monotype to 10 pounds of my ww alloy to start too.

Are there and other colors that work well for shake and bake that you know of?

Thanks,
Bb

Re: Finally casting again! [Re: Burleyboy] #16232760 07/07/21
Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 3,026
Ole_270 Offline
Campfire Guide
Offline
Campfire Guide
Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 3,026
The clear is the only Eastwood powder I've tried, lots of others use the Ford blue. The powders Smoke4320 sells on another forum are those he's tried personally and knows they work by shake and bake. I use a High Gloss Wet Black from Powder by the Pound that works well.

Re: Finally casting again! [Re: Burleyboy] #16233479 07/07/21
Joined: Nov 2004
Posts: 6,208
B
Burleyboy Offline OP
Campfire Tracker
OP Offline
Campfire Tracker
B
Joined: Nov 2004
Posts: 6,208
I just had some better success casting this afternoon. I did some 170g 40 cal stuff for my 40s and 10mms. They came out pretty good and didn't frost as bad as my bigger 458 bullets did. I tried some more 458 in between 40s and the 458s came out nice but quickly frosted. I put a few on the concrete and hit them hard on the front with a hammer. They just flattened out a bit on the front but held together well.

Do I just need a toaster oven to bake on the powder coat? Is there a certain one people like?

Thanks
Bb

IC-A

Re: Finally casting again! [Re: Burleyboy] #16233517 07/07/21
Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 3,026
Ole_270 Offline
Campfire Guide
Offline
Campfire Guide
Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 3,026
I had lots of trouble with a toaster oven with the larger diameter bullets, 90 gr 25 cal, and 308s worked ok but my 45s didn't cure well. Finally go the convection type and problem solved. Thinking the added mass of the 255 gr 45s in the large 100+ count trays I was running needed better circulation and even heat. I've taken to running the 45s for 35-40 minutes to make sure the core temperature of the bullets get warm enough to keep from holding down the surface temp.

Re: Finally casting again! [Re: Burleyboy] #16260701 07/17/21
Joined: Nov 2004
Posts: 6,208
B
Burleyboy Offline OP
Campfire Tracker
OP Offline
Campfire Tracker
B
Joined: Nov 2004
Posts: 6,208
I bought a cheap $20 oven at Walmart. The convection one I wanted was out of stock so I thought I'd try the cheap one. I spent a few hours yesterday experimenting with powder coating techniques.

I bought Eastwood light Ford blue powder. It seems to coat well shaking them in a cool whip container. I made a little wire basket for the toaster oven. First batch I put some no stick tin foil on the basket. I poured the ballets on it in a pile and baked for 20 minutes at 400. I took them out and they looked good but I let them cool too long and it took a bit to break them apart.

The next batch I used the same sheet of tin foil and the bullets had fuzzy clumps of melted powder stuck to them. Next batch I just did directly on the basket with no foil. They looked pretty good but had spots missing where they stuck to the basket. I ended up having best results with non stick parchment paper on the basket. Still had some spots where the bullets stuck together.

I think my last 2 batches were the best. I baked them in a pile on parchment then took them right out let them cool for maybe a minute, then dumped them in a tub of water.

I cast several different bullets this week and after working through some glitches I'm getting some good bullets. The alloy I've found I like is 4 pounds of wheel weight alloy with 1 pound of monotype ratio. I typically do 10 pounds ww and 2.5 pounds monotype in my lee pot. I get I really hot and then Flux and stir about 3 times to get it nice and clean. I heat my mold by dipping the corner in the alloy as the alloy cools to 650 or so then I start casting.

It's taken quite a bit to get some of these new molds casting well. I've found I scrub them with hot water and dish soap. Then go over them with qtips and alcohol. I lube them on the pins, screws, and plate with synthetic 2 cycle oil. I hit them with a touch more lube as I cast.

I had really frosty bullets at first from too hot of mold. I thought at first it was too hot of alloy but it's the mold temp that frosts. I started keeping a damp rag near by and cooling the mold on it for about a 7 count if it is frosting. I almost have to cool it after each cast.

I also found to put the sprue back in the pot as I cut it. It doesn't cool the alloy too much if I do it right then and one at a time. It's better then getting a little pile of them and putting them all back in at once. That cools your mix down too quick.

I forgot there's a bit of an art to casting. Once your up and going and get a rhythm you can make a pile with a 6 cavity. It just takes me some time to get all 6 casting well. Once it's all running it's kind of fun making a nice pile of your own.

Today I shot my 340g .458 bullets from a Lee mold in my guide gun. At 50 yards I was getting about a 2" group with open sights. That's about all the better I can shoot it with any load with no scope on it. I was shooting plain based powder coated at 1600 fps. The load I worked up is the 340 over 50 grains of H4895. I knew I'd like h4895 for a lighter load. The first load I tried seems to shoot well.

I also tried some pc 310g 44 Lee bullets without gas checks in my 329 pd. I had to run these through my push through Lee sizer after powder coating to get them to fit well in all my different 44 mags. I tried 4 different powders and speeds ranged from about 1000 fps to 1130 fos from the 4" 329 pd. The fastest load was 20g of PP300mp at 1130 and it shot well but wasn't fun in the 329pd.

It's been a week of leaning for me but I'm a much better caster already and I've successfully entered the world of powder coating. If anyone has any more pointers keep them coming please.

Bb


Moderated by  RickBin, SYSOP 

RR1
Who's Online Now
689 registered members (22250rem, 160user, 1_deuce, 10gaugemag, 1lessdog, 01Foreman400, 79 invisible), 2,126 guests, and 933 spiders.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
RR2/3










Fish & Game Departments | Solunar Tables | Mission Statement | Privacy Policy | Contact Us | DMCA
Hunting | Fishing | Camping | Backpacking | Reloading | Campfire Forums | Gear Shop
Copyright © 2000-2022 24hourcampfire.com, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
 
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.3
(Release build 20190728)
PHP: 7.3.31 Page Time: 0.069s Queries: 14 (0.003s) Memory: 0.8008 MB (Peak: 0.8881 MB) Data Comp: Zlib Server Time: 2021-10-25 16:00:11 UTC
Valid HTML 5 and Valid CSS