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Discussion Starter #1
Have always reloaded fmj and want to switch to lead. What will be diffrent in the reloading process? Have noticed that there are many different types of bullets, which will leave me the least to clean out of my barrel?

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Going on the assumption that you're loading for the .45 auto, bullet brand is not too overly critical.

Laser-Cast will not lead your barrel but at around $58/1000 delivered, these are just about the most expensive I've ever bought.

Some of the cheapest are from T&T and have only given me a minor amount of leading in some barrels.

Generally speaking, stay away from swaged lead bullets and stick with cast bullets. Just about any 200 SWC or 230 RN costing between $40 and $50 per 1000 should work OK.

I like the 200 grain SWC, but the 230 RN is the best if you don't want feeding to possibly be an issue. They will load the same as a FMJ bullet except that the cheaper brands tend to have lube on them that you may want to wipe off (this gets old quick).

As a bullet caster, this is where I suggest you start casting your own in order to live a more fulfilled life and look down on folks who buy "store bought" bullets...
 

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A magazine of FMJ at the end of your range sessions will completely clean out the lead, so you don't have to worry about it.

The only difference in the loading process is that you may need slightly more belling of the case mouth to get the lead bullet base all the way into the case. Otherwise, you may shave lead during seating.

A taper crimp is better and more effective with lead than jacketed bullets.

I get match grade bullets (H&G 200 swc) for $29 per thousand in five thousand round lots. Shop around. There is probably a good deal on bullets in your neighborhood.

Try the 200 swc; in many guns it feeds better than FMJ.
 

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Lead bullets will lower your cost. I pay anywhere from $30.00 per k to $44.oo for match grade 200gr. SWC. If you can buy at a show you save the shipping cost. Only minus on using lead for me is smoke from lead and lube. If you shoot indoors expect a lot of smoke. Lead buildup will not occur at mid-range velocities.
 

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Originally posted by KLN:
A magazine of FMJ at the end of your range sessions will completely clean out the lead, so you don't have to worry about it.

The only difference in the loading process is that you may need slightly more belling of the case mouth to get the lead bullet base all the way into the case. Otherwise, you may shave lead during seating.

A taper crimp is better and more effective with lead than jacketed bullets.

I get match grade bullets (H&G 200 swc) for $29 per thousand in five thousand round lots. Shop around. There is probably a good deal on bullets in your neighborhood.

Try the 200 swc; in many guns it feeds better than FMJ.

Where can you purchase the H&G bullets?

Bruce


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If you are shooting a Glock, a magazine full of fmj at the end of a range session probably will clean out your barrel, your trigger, magazine and a couple of fingers!
 

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Incidentally, I have never gotten any leading in my Glocks (9mm & .40), nor have I had any such terrible problems with one. If anyone has personal experience to the contrary I would be interested in the details.
 

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Originally posted by Walking Point:
... As a bullet caster, this is where I suggest you start casting your own in order to live a more fulfilled life and look down on folks who buy "store bought" bullets...
How time consuming is this process?
 

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Originally posted by KLN:
Incidentally, I have never gotten any leading in my Glocks (9mm & .40), nor have I had any such terrible problems with one. If anyone has personal experience to the contrary I would be interested in the details.

Agreed. As long as you are not going 1000+ rds. between barrel cleaning, I'm not sure there will be a problem. Use moderate loads and there should be no problem with leading or pressure.
 

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Originally posted by high_caliber:
How time consuming is this process?
It's like any other hobby, as time consuming as you want it to be. Probably an hour and a half to two hours to heat the lead pot, heat the molds and cast a fair number of bullets. If you get into heat-treating, weighing, etc., it can consume a lot more time. If you use wheelweights, you have to count the time spent scrounging the weights, then cleaning them and pouring ingots.

You can spend a lot of time casting or relatively little time - it's up to you.
 

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My cost for casting my own turns out to be about 2 to 3 dollars per thousand, 38 or 45 caliber. I now cringe at the thought of paying for commercial cast bullets.

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Glock chambers are barely supported and oversized in the throat. Brass in the Glock gets work hardened. (I thought this was a 1911 Forum.) Work hardened brass tends to fail -- catastrophically. Glock voids its warranty for shooting reloads in their guns.

Bore Snake violates the FIRST RULE of bore cleaning: "Don't run a used patch down the bore."

Personally, I don't like running wire brushes down the bore either.

Hard cast lead should not be a problem in a bore. I shoot heavier bullets, 230 gr. LRN, because the velocities are slower. Also, the longer bullet feeds somewhat better.

But I shoot LazerCast LSWC 240 gr. in a 44 mag and crank them up to 1600 fps or more without any problems. Lots of silhouette shooters do the same. Bore solvent and a patch gets out the lead. Let the solvent sit in the bore for a few minutes and then run a proper sized jag and a good quality cotton patch.



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Gunner, it's always worked for me with no undue pressure signs....

By what your saying everytime I switch loads during practice, say going from a 200 LSWC to a 230 FMJ I would have to completely tear the gun down and spend an hour cleaning the bore. I don't think so. Besides, lead generates MORE pressure with similar powder loads, due to better bore sealing. So how would a smaller(.451 vs .452), looser sealing projectile blow the gun up with out leading that was actually obstructing the bore which is a dangerous situation anyway? Not to mention that loads that would lead this quickly are probably overpressure if normal bullet weights are used. This doesn't apply to Glocks, as the leading actually can quickly reach a point where it's obstructing the bore due to leading.
 

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Originally posted by KLN:
A magazine of FMJ at the end of your range sessions will completely clean out the lead, so you don't have to worry about it.

The only difference in the loading process is that you may need slightly more belling of the case mouth to get the lead bullet base all the way into the case. Otherwise, you may shave lead during seating.

A taper crimp is better and more effective with lead than jacketed bullets.

I get match grade bullets (H&G 200 swc) for $29 per thousand in five thousand round lots. Shop around. There is probably a good deal on bullets in your neighborhood.

Try the 200 swc; in many guns it feeds better than FMJ.

Where do you get the H&G bullets?
 

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The H&G #68 is the mold number 68 make by H&G company. It's not a bullet maker, but a mold-maker. They make lots of different shapes, each one is numbered. #68 is the archetypical 200 Gr. SWC shape.

Many makers make their 200 gr. SWC in this basic shape. But not all of them are; some bullet makers like Hornady, and Speer, think they can improve on it, so the shape is different. But most 200 gr SWC is this shape. Do a search on these terms on Google.com, and you can find the picture of all the H&G shapes. I'd refer you to the site, but it's on my other computer, sorry, but that's how I found it, on Google.com search engine.
 

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Originally posted by Car Knocker:
It's like any other hobby, as time consuming as you want it to be. Probably an hour and a half to two hours to heat the lead pot, heat the molds and cast a fair number of bullets. If you get into heat-treating, weighing, etc., it can consume a lot more time. If you use wheelweights, you have to count the time spent scrounging the weights, then cleaning them and pouring ingots.

You can spend a lot of time casting or relatively little time - it's up to you.
Sorry to reply so late but some weeks I barely have time to reload my cartridges for the weekend. I shoot 600 to 900 rounds every weekend. So to be more specific with my question: About how much time would it take to cast, size, and lube 1000 rounds of .45 230 gr. roundnose?
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Thanks for all the info!
Our fire season is cutting in on my reloading but with any luck things will slow down so I can give some of these ideas a try.
640tcu
 

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As to how much time casting takes, I'm not sure. I figure if I time myself I'll be shocked.

Using a single double cavity mould I would guess it would take at least 6 hours to cast the bullets and 2 or 3 hours to lube/size them. For some reason my normal casting session lasts about 4 hours and I usually produce 700 good .45 bullets and roughly 500 other bullets in assorted calibers while keeping at least 2 moulds going at all times.

I use a lab oven to heat treat bullets (except for .45s), but I use the oven to "rapid age" all bullets. Oven heat treating takes me 2 hours from a cold start with another hour for aging. Of course this can be done at any time and only involves a few minutes of actual activity on your part. The only drawback for some people with the oven technique is the need to size before heat treating, then having to perform the same, or at least a similar operation to lube them.

In most calibers I tend to size them in a Lee sizer, then lube them in a lubrisizer. My understanding from folks who have been doing this forever is that the Lee sizer is more accurate.
 
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