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Thread: New to cast bullets

  1. #1
    Member yogibear's Avatar
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    Question New to cast bullets

    I've been reloading for about 12 yrs and have only done jacketed bullets. Recently I found some hard cast 250 gr .44 bullets that I want to load for my Ruger SR in 44 mag.

    When I opened the package I couldn't believe how much lube was on the bullets. They felt tacky and it seemed excessive. But like I said this is my first experience and I don't know if this is normal or not. Do the bullets require any further prep or are they ready to go as is?

    I appreciate any input on this matter. It's like learning to walk all over again.

  2. #2

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    Quote Originally Posted by yogibear View Post
    I've been reloading for about 12 yrs and have only done jacketed bullets. Recently I found some hard cast 250 gr .44 bullets that I want to load for my Ruger SR in 44 mag.

    When I opened the package I couldn't believe how much lube was on the bullets. They felt tacky and it seemed excessive. But like I said this is my first experience and I don't know if this is normal or not. Do the bullets require any further prep or are they ready to go as is?

    I appreciate any input on this matter. It's like learning to walk all over again.
    I have never noticed any problem from lube on the base of the bullet fouling powder, so I don't worry about it there. In the course of seating excess lube "squishes" up out of the case, and every so often you can build up enough in your seating and/or crimping die to require disassembly and cleaning. It takes a lot of loads before that occurs, in my experience. The remaining lube on the nose of bullets is a downright mess. I use a hunk of paper towel to wipe down the loaded rounds before boxing them. I don't like excess bullet lube on the outside of cases, for fear that it will interfere with the case's ability to grab chamber walls when it expands. Therefore I'm wiping both the case and the bullet noses after loading.

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    Quote Originally Posted by yogibear View Post
    I've been reloading for about 12 yrs and have only done jacketed bullets. Recently I found some hard cast 250 gr .44 bullets that I want to load for my Ruger SR in 44 mag.

    When I opened the package I couldn't believe how much lube was on the bullets. They felt tacky and it seemed excessive. But like I said this is my first experience and I don't know if this is normal or not. Do the bullets require any further prep or are they ready to go as is?

    I appreciate any input on this matter. It's like learning to walk all over again.
    I've only loaded cast bullets that had sticky/tacky bullet lube one time. It was from the homemade lube the guy used. I wiped the base of the bullet (the flat part) off before seating it, and then wiped the bullet off after it was seated in the case.
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    Member Alangaq's Avatar
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    If you have soft “sticky” lube on the bullets, it is likely a yellowish looking lube and is the standard NRA 50/50 lube. This lube is preferred by many as it does not require a heat source to flow thru the lubrisizers efficiently. The down side is that you end up with a “sticky bullet” and it can make a real mess if you try and store them all together in a box or ziplock baggy. Long story short, your 44 wont drive lead faster than the effectiveness of that lube. Your main issue may be obturation with the “hard cast” bullets. My suggestion would be to use loads on the upper end of the scale instead of mild practice rounds. I have found that with several brands of “hard cast” bullets, it takes quite a bit of pressure for them to bump up and fill the bore. If you get a bunch of leading in the barrel, you will know your running too low pressure for the bullet hardness.

    If you end up with a bunch of lube stuck inside you dies, I have found that heating them up with a hair dryer and then cleaning them out with Hoppies #9 works really well for getting all the lube out.

    If you have reloaded a bunch of rounds and they are all covered in sticky lube goo; I have found that it works pretty well to run them thru the vibrating tumbler with walnut shell media and about a table spoon of water. It will gunk up the media pretty fast and you wont want to use it for anything other than “de-lubing” loaded rounds but it is faster than wiping each one down by hand with a paper towel.

    Just an FYI kind of thing, but the general rule of thumb for lube effectiveness is to look at the muzzle and if you see a star shaped lube ring the chances are pretty good that you lube is doing its job.
    “You’ve gotten soft. You’re like one of those police dogs who’s released in to the wild and gets eaten by a deer or something.” Bill McNeal of News Radio

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