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ok i know that all bullets nowadays are alloy n not pure lead no more but i was wondering if theres any ppl out there who cast their own bullets using pure lead

lol i honestly dont really know why im asking this but i am in my room now and was glancing over at my .451 round ball mold that i used when i used to have my cap n ball revolver n also saw the 4 whole ingots of pure lead thats stacked next to the mold and i know theres a few gunners in my town who reload their own cartridges so i was wondering if i should offer the ingots to em
 

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Pure lead would be too soft for most fast shooting rounds,antimony and tin are usually added to have a harder bullet to slow leading of barrel.I ruined a 308 rifle and a blackhawk 357 mag melting wheel weights down and molding the 357 in 154 gr and 150 in the 308.It can be done though and I know alot of folks that do it and have alot of fun,they also use gas checks to keep leading down.I'm sure the guys that melt lead would enjoy the offer.Drop-Shot
 

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Yea on the old cap and ball you wanted the lead soft enough to stuff into the cylinder,I remember those,I shot a 36 cal for the first few years and watched the guys with the metallic cartridges and they loaded so fast I just had to have one,that started the whole thing,many guns later I wish I still had the old cap and ball.Drop-Shot
 

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Mine was a remington that was made in the early 30's,my uncle told me it wasn't worth anything so I shot it alot for several years,he talked me into a trade for a winchester 32,I took the trade cause I could h8unt deer with the 32.Drop-Shot
 

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I use pure lead when pouring my Lee slugs. I do use wheelweights when pouring bullets. Wheelweights are just about the right hardness for bullets without having to add anything else.

I don't hunt. Just use the slugs for plinking. Strictly a target shooter here. To much of a pain in the butt to get a hunting license here in California, then to find a place to hunt within a 3 hour drive is another thing.

Bob
 

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Bob I ruined a 308 barrel 700 rem by melting down wheel weights,I have been a mechanic for 33 years before I broke my back and had surgerys and was always around alignment and wheel balancers and tire changing machines,so wheel weights were free and plentiful,I melted them down for several years till my rem 700 308 started shooting 4 inch groups,I took it to a gunsmith and with a boroscope he showed me the leading problem.He tried for several days,I tried for several days but it would not come out.I traded it and my 357 blackhawk that I shot pure lead wheel weights that had the same problem but not as bad as my rem 700 308.Be carefull and watch for leading problems,mabe use gas checks.It took several years to ruin my barrel so mabe you have some time,scrub scrub and scrub some more.Drop-Shot
 

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No, wheelweights are not pure lead, I got my pure lead from plumbing shops and junkyards, lead pipe and such. Wheelweights are mixed with other metals to hardden them up, I shoot them at .38 pressures. for my .357 I used copper coated.

Bob
 

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I still have a few ingots of pure lead from the old days and its pretty soft,I can use bolt cutters to cut a chunk off to melt.The wheel weights are thiner so they cut better,way too soft.Maser at rifle velocitys the gases behind the bullet can melt it more than at small pistol I guess,I have been warned by others that hard cast bullets even will lead up a barrel if shot at high pressures like the 308,only not as bad as softer lead,I only shoot small amounts of hardcast bullets in my 44 mags and 45 lc's,a few in my 45/70.I'm just gun shy on lead after ruining my 308,the 357 mag was not as bad but with a boroscope you could still see leading deposits.If you have leading under control then enjoy,its cool making your own bullet and reloading to shoot it.Drop-Shot
 

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Maser all my friends were shooting melted wheel weights for hunting and varmits as well as plinking,I did it for the enjoyment of making my own bullet and shooting it,I was 19 then,I would let my wheel weights melt and I would scrape the dross off and let it keep cooking for 10 more minutes,my friends says that will produce the best bullet,I did that for 3 or 4 years till my 2 inch groups started to climb.I did it for fun,I had 4 or 5 rifles then and just used the 308 and 357 mag just in case the 1 friend was right,he was.Drop-Shot
 

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I forgot to mention maser that I only loaded the melted wheel weights when molded to 1850 fps on my 308 and 850 fps for my 357 mag,after losing both guns to poor accuracy I always say something if someone mentions melting wheel weights.Even at low velocity they can ruin a barrel.Drop-Shot
 

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Hey, sorry, need to clarify a little bit, I use the wheelweights loads only at 38 pressures. Your absolutely right, fired a few at 357 pressures and they practically melted before they made it out the bore, had very heavy leading. When I load for 357, I only use comercial made copper jacketed rounds.

What would you suggest to harden them up? Any lead sources that are just about right in hardness from scrap? I had a source for linotype but its gone now, they closed down the ol print factory...dangit.

For my slugs I use old scrap lead piping, shower bed liner. Real soft stuff, usually cut it up with hammer and chisel for the melting pot. Like I said, I don't hunt, the rounds are just for plinking so the hardness of my slugs are not a big factor. I was shooting at some quarter inch steel plating one time and went downrange to check, the slugs had flattened out into about a 2 inch circle...picked them up and melted them down again...lol

If your wondering, no, I dont load them to full pressure, to hard on the shoulder!
 

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Bob, LEE Precision(the folks that make dies and other stuff too, I know you know them) has a book on melting lead for bullets and they give good recipes for hardcast bullets,I read a few paragrafs and it mentioned tin and antimony but I don't remember the amounts.I wish I had invested in that book back then.You are right lead is harder to find now,I would talk to my sporting goods supplier to find a good source,I hear it's getting more expensive.Carefull of lead vapors bud.Drop-Shot
 

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Your right maser,the 00 buckshot I shoot is so soft it does the same thing.Its called controlled penetration round,I sure wouldn't want to be on the business end of that.Have a good one bud.Drop-Shot
 

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I have been using wheel weights for over 8 years and had no major problems.

You get some leading if you push them to fast, but if you clean it out after each shooting session it cleans up fairly easily. Just add a bit of Linotype to the wheel weight lead and you can push it faster then plain WW lead.

I have never heard of a barrel leading so bad it would be ruined, any gunsmith worth anything should have been able to clean it right up using an electronic cleaner or any cleaner with mercury in it, I think there is another cleaner or 2 that cuts right thru lead but I can not remember what they are right off.

Michael Grace
 

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I would never heat my gun barrel enuf to melt lead out of it.
There are way to many ways to remove lead without the use of heat, copper/bronze wool on a brush, mercury let soak a bit till the lead desolves, electronic cleaning and a few others I can not think of right at the moment.


Michael Ggrace
 

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Baryngyl it sounds like you haven't read my past posts on leading,I only push 308 lead to 1800 fps and the gunsmith that gave me the bad news was a benchrest shooter and gunsmith for over 40 years,dead now he can't speak but I can,wheel weights ruin barrels.He had just gotten the first version of the electric probe cleaner and used it over night, and then used a drill on a cleaning rod with a bronze bristle brush and could not remove it,just because it hasn't happened to you doesn't mean it can't happen and casting doubts on a dead renown gunsmith isn't cool no matter how old you are.Drop-Shot
 

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Drop-Shot said:
and then used a drill on a cleaning rod with a bronze bristle brush and could not remove it
Used a drill to spin a brush in a rifled barrel? :shock:
That is ok for a smoothbore but not in a rifled barrel.

Just because someone has been in a business for 40 years does not mean they know everything and/or can't make a mistake. (I had a gunsmith thats been in business for about the same length of time make a mistake while drilling holes to mount a pistol scope.)

How was I to know he was now dead, and being dead does not mean that everything he did while he was alive was good.


Michael Grace
 
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