View Full Version : Round nose to flat nose

07-11-2005, 12:26 PM
I'm feeding a Rossi M92 .357/.38 levergun. To date, the best bullet in terms of feed reliability has been the Hunters Supply RNFP 162gr. It's also proven to be very accurate ahead of moderate charges of HP38 in .38 special, and Lil'gun in .357 mag. This bullet has a small flat spot, and is the closest thing to a round nose bullet I would put in a tube magazine.

I'd like to cast a similar bullet. Haven't been able to find a mold that matches that bullet's profile, so I assume Hunters Supply flattens the point with a mechanical process.

I'm wondering if I can use a mold like the Lee TL358-158-2R, and flatten the tip?

I'm relatively new to casting, and I have never altered my cast bullets other than sizing. I'm looking for advice on procedures for flattening the tip. I tumble lube and size with Lee's push-through dies, so I don't have a dedicatede sizer press.

Will whacking with a hammer work? :)

07-11-2005, 12:45 PM
rbstern--Will wacking the nose with a hammer work? I think that procedure was used on Michael Jackson for one or the other of his numerous alterations.

07-11-2005, 12:54 PM

No, you can't whack them with a hammer. You can't displace metal, it just goes somewhere else and in this case the bullet will get fatter. If you used the Lyman/RCBS type luber/sizers you could make a nose punch that is flat and possibly flatten the nose some with more pressure on the operating lever after your bullet has reached the stop. How much you flatten it would depend on how much pressure you apply and what hardness your alloy is. The nose body would probably get alittle fatter but the die would keep the bullet bands the same size. You're probably better off getting a mould in the style you want. You can't do this with a Lee sizer die because the die has a little constriction band inside it that actually sizes the bullet, unlike the Lyman/RCBS type where the whole die is one dimension inside.


07-11-2005, 01:18 PM
Joe, if I could find a mold for that bullet style, I would buy it. I've looked at RCBS, Lyman, Saeco and Lee profiles, and have not seen it. That's why I suspect that Hunters Supply is flattening them mechanically.

Worst case, I could have Lee make a mold for me.

Let me be more specific about the whacking idea:

I'd plane a piece of wood to the finished length of the bullet I wanted. Drill holes slightly larger than .358. Place cast round nose bullets in holes, tip up. Then either whack the exposed round nose, or clamp another hard surfaced board surface down with enough pressure to flatten. Then, run through the Lee .358 sizer die.

Most of my pistol caliber casting is straight wheel weight, air cooled, so hardness is not an issue.

07-11-2005, 01:30 PM
To get the meplat you're looking for, I'd suggest drilling a hole in a piece of sheetmetal that will allow the boolit to "poke through" and then use a file to take off the tip of the round nose. That allows each boolit to be the same.

If you were to make a template that matches your loading blocks, you could go ahead and load the rounds unmodified, put the 50-hole template over them, and file them all down in one operation.

07-11-2005, 01:34 PM

Dan over at Mountain Molds could make the mould for you. He's pretty reasonable too and you can design you're own bullet. Grumbles method I think would be better then whacking them with a hammer.


07-11-2005, 05:26 PM
I wasnt aware that a round nose would cause problems in tube mags, shows what I know hehe, pointy sharp things ya I could see a problem, but the "standard" 38 special is still a round nosed lead bullet isnt it ??

These two bullets look like what you are wanting, Midway may put a burr some folks saddle but they have good pictures :-)




07-11-2005, 06:28 PM
Willbird, here's a link to a pic of the bullet. Notice how small the flat is, right near the top of the radius. Haven't seen anything like this, except round nose, which again, leads me to believe the tip is being flattened as part of the production.


Some people will use round nose in a tube magazine. I prefer to avoid it.

07-11-2005, 08:40 PM
That sized flat COULD be an artifact of the magma lube sizer, it uses a bullet to push the previous bullet from the die, with a saeco 125 grain round nose I have seen a small flat on the tip with some alloys.


07-11-2005, 10:18 PM
There's an easy way to do it mechanically. Put the RN bullet on the pedestal of a Lee pushthrough and run it up into a seater die with an SWC nose punch. You can put on a fair sized meplat without affecting the body diameter because the rounded part of the nose is so small in comparison.

Personally, I shoot RNs from tube mags without worrying about it as long as I am using air cooled WW or equivalent.

crazy mark
07-12-2005, 11:39 PM
Look for a 358416. It has a rfn. Mine drops bullets at 160 grs+ out of WW's. It has a small flat on the nose and feeds good in my 357 mag lever. Mark

07-13-2005, 01:01 AM
I picked up some Slingshot ammo (1/4" ball bearings) to drop into my 30 caliber HBC mold and attempt to make a very blunt boolit with a wide but shallow hollow point for brush hunting. Earlier attempts using BB's in the nose left uneven edges on the top of the hollow point which needed to be filed even. I'll let you know how the ones using the 1/4'' BB work.


07-13-2005, 02:31 AM
I filed some 30 cal roundnose flat and I used a caliper to make sure I was taking the same amount off every time. Killed a nice doe with it in a 308 in my Encore. You have never seen the blood that deer squirted out. A blind person could have followed the short blood trail and the deer sprayed blood in a 6 foot circle where it dropped about 30 yards from where it was shot. Load was 19 grains of 2400 for what I had hoped would be a 1800 FPS load since I do not have a crony I had to go by what the book suggested. It sure made me a believer in cast bullets even 30 cal for deer if the shot is good. Makes a nice mild load for the 308 pistol too. I found by using the caliper my filed bullets were all real close they all shot good. Now I have a 311407 mould so I do not have to worry about fileing tips off. Jim

07-13-2005, 07:39 AM
The Lee TL358-158-SWC feeds just fine and dandy through my Rossi M92 357. Good accuracy, too. Here's a sample:


07-13-2005, 08:45 AM
[QUOTE=Willbird]I wasnt aware that a round nose would cause problems in tube mags, shows what I know hehe, pointy sharp things ya I could see a problem, but the "standard" 38 special is still a round nosed lead bullet isnt it ??
Even need to be carefull with FN in some tube mags. Had a Henry blow 2 rounds during loading last spring at the N-SSA nationals. Had a partal mag and let the follower slam down on em. Had flat meplat boolets but had a high primer.Short hospital trip and needed some stiches.We changed our rools to pistol primers only in the lever guns.[44-40 & 45LC

MT Gianni
07-13-2005, 02:07 PM
Get a piece of 3/4" or 1" square stock. Cut it to the exact length that you want your flat nose to be at on the bullet. Do the same with 3 or 4 more for spares. Drill the body out with a bit the exact size of your proposed flat. Mark a 3/8 " drill bit [.375 diameter] with masking tape and drill to the length that the r n will just clear and stand up to be filed for the flat nose. Fill a pop can 2/3 full with cutting oil. Heat the square stock with a torch to bright orange to dull red. Then drop it into the pop can and heat the next one. This results in a mostly case hardened template to file your bullet noses flat. Putting more than 2 hot pieces ito the can will result in a boiled over mess that will stink up your shop. Don't ask me how I know. You can file away for a long time without reducing the hardened square stock. I have done this to make a flat on bullets bigger so they cover a primer on a lever gun and to make a small game bullet in a 22. I don't know if this is worth your while for a competition bullet as you will need to make a lot. Make sure you file over a bucket or trash can as lead filings should be contained and use the same precautions as if you were casting, ie., wash up good after. Gianni.