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Thread: Cast Bullets & lubesizing

  1. #1

    Default Cast Bullets & lubesizing

    Hi all;
    Ok, just got done casting and lubesizing a couple thousand rounds in various sizes and weights..
    There's always at least a bit of lube on the base of the bullets after it comes out of the lubesizer. I am thinking that each bullet base should be de-greased prior to seating as it will be in contact with the powder charge. But then it may not matter...
    Has anyone put it to the test? Under the heat and pressure, I think that it may all come out in the wash.
    Thanks,
    Mark

  2. #2

    Default

    I used to sweat it, but with all the lubes I've tried wiping the bases didn't seem to make the slightest dif in accuracy or velocity variation. If I'm being anal and have lots of time I wipe, but if you're storing the bullets in bulk their going to get smeared again before you can use them anyway.

    Which lube are you using, BTW?

  3. #3
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    Default Bullet lube on bases

    I always wipe the bases of the bullets just before I seat them by wiping them the base of the bullet across a piece of rag or cloth folded up and placed on the reloading bench. It only takes a second or so for each bullet. I use the Alox / beeswax NRA lube os it is soft and comes off pretty easily.

    Commercially sold bevel based bullets with hard lubes are more troublesome to clean - a piece of towel on a soft pad works better for them. I even use some solvent on the rag if the bases are really nasty.

    Loaded rounds are usually boxed with the bullet down so the powder is in contact with the lube on the base of the bullet. An exception is when a filler such as kapok or a wad is used with reduced loads to hold the powder back against the primer; in case it probably won't matter.

    I usually load a number of rounds at a time and may store them for years before I shoot them. Rounds loaded for shooting immediately would appear to be less critical it would appear but perhaps not.

    I switched some years ago from a Lyman Mdl. 45 lube sizer to a SAECO sizer and now wish I had switched much sooner. In addition to be much easier to use the SAECO sizer leaves much less lube on the base of the bullet than the Lyman. I haven't used the RCBS sizer but I suspect it works much like the Lyman since they use the same dies. The Saeco apparently uses a die with smaller holes and higher lube presssure to get the better results and less lube on the base.

    A test would certainly be in order here to see the real effects of the lube vs. speculation. I'll see if I can work something up in the near future.
    Living the urban lifestyle so I can pay my way and for my family's needs, and support my country. And you?
    ".. ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country" JFK

  4. #4

    Default Bullet lube

    I just changed over to Lyman Super Moly. I was using RCBS Rifle Bullet Lube, and the last time I tried ( Years ago ) loads for the 454 Casull I had serious leading problems. I did not notice it in the 32 S&W long or 45 ACP, 357.
    I had a couple theories why, one was the Casull is stainless and I thought maybe the lead liked it better, and the other was I could find no published loads at the time that weren't pretty darned stiff, and there's only so much heat and pressure that lead can take. Also, the batch of lead I used then, and am still using was recycled, stuff I had gathered and sorted. A couple sailboat keel weights, and some bearing babbit metal which was really nice and hard. A lot of tin and and even a bit of nickel in the babbit. So there may be affinity between remaining nickel and the stainless Casull barrel as well. I am getting a lot of metal off in my dross, fluxing with marvelux , I think this is probably the nickel content. I can't remember my Saeco hardness, but recall that I thought it was quite a bit better than the soft lead I had which gave hardness results in line with the numbers Saeco said it should.
    So I am trying to hang onto that batch and make it work still.
    Either Miller or Murphy told me to try the trail Boss powder, and I will assemble loadings for the 250 grain Kieth type bullet and shoot around 900 FPS for pleasure and target. This is a very noteworthy departure, and where the difference will be made.
    I am pretty certain the leading will disappear, and believe that my selection of Lyman is probably a good one, they have been at the cast bullet game really a long time. You won't catch me stirring Carnuba, beeswax, graphite, moly and axle grease...
    But yeah, I guess I will sit down and wipe the bullets. I was just wondering if it would really matter. When I get to the Dillon, it is all about production and wiping the bases would be the slowest part of the operation.

  5. #5
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    Default Lyman bllet casting stuff

    Lyman reall knows cast bullets although i bet a lot of the old guys that were really into it have long since gone. I use a lot of their equipment and still use my old Mdl. 45 sizer for calibers where I don't have dies for the SAECO. I wouldn't have believed how better much the SAECO sizer is until I used one - the Lyman works but it isn't even close to ease of use etc.

    I haven't tried the Lyman moly lube. I see a lot of people are now abandonng the moly coated jacketed bullets although there may not be a connection. The NRA tried a bunch of additives while they were working up the alox & beeswax mixture and none of the additives gave consistant results so they were dropped. If it works for you stick with it of course.

    The alox / beeswax mixture is sold commercially so you don't have to mix it yourself. In addition to working quite well it also smells nice!
    Living the urban lifestyle so I can pay my way and for my family's needs, and support my country. And you?
    ".. ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country" JFK

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    Default "Nickel" in the mix...

    [QUOTE=snowshooze;257750] Also, the batch of lead I used then, and am still using was recycled, stuff I had gathered and sorted. A couple sailboat keel weights, and some bearing babbit metal which was really nice and hard. A lot of tin and and even a bit of nickel in the babbit. So there may be affinity between remaining nickel and the stainless Casull barrel as well.QUOTE]

    Back when the .30-06 had first been adopted, the old cupro-nickel bullet jackets would cause major problems by building up metal in the bore, building to the point that it raised pressure, and made accuracy go to hell. The Ordnance Corps fought it for quite awhile, some folks even took to greasing their bullets to overcome the problem (it didn't work, and caused some of those 'low number' '03 blowups by not sealing the case and venting gas back into the action).
    Nickel and high velocity don't necessarily go together.

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    Default

    Practically speaking, the only thing I've ever noticed with lube on the bullet bases is more smoke when I fire a round. I've heard in warmer climates that the excess lube can contaminate the powder, but I've never experienced that up here in AK.

    Mike

  8. #8
    Member RANGER RICK's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeT View Post
    Practically speaking, the only thing I've ever noticed with lube on the bullet bases is more smoke when I fire a round. I've heard in warmer climates that the excess lube can contaminate the powder, but I've never experienced that up here in AK.

    Mike

    You are most correct .
    A few years ago when I visited my brother in Texas we went shooting a couple times in the nice hot weather , it was around 110 or so.
    I brought my Sharps 45-120 along for him to shoot since he had not ever shot one .
    I had two 20 round boxes the first day and when I opened the second box the lube had melted and migrated into the cartridge .Bullets are facing up.
    I loaded and shot them all . The only problem I could see was the bullets were hitting lower than the first box ???
    Both were loaded the same with Black Powder .
    A couple days later we went again and this time I kept my rounds in a cooler and both boxes shot the same .
    I think the Black powder was being contaminated by the lube ???
    Or I was just holding the rifle wrong on the second box ???
    Either way I was not at work and I was having a great time ..

    RR
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    Member Alangaq's Avatar
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    Default

    I have been using the 50/50 Alox lube exclusively for about 10 years now and have completely abandoned the use of any of the hard lubes. That said, it is common for all of my bullets to end up with a bit of lube on the base when I pull them from the lubrisizer. As a matter of routine I wipe them with a paper towel to remove this excess lube when loading smokeless rounds. With black powder I cut wads out of beer boxes and put two over the powder followed by a small “pea” of lube and then the bullet. A “grease cookie” of sorts and it seems to aid considerably in the softening of the black powder fouling.
    “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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