View Full Version : Student of the Boolit: Mandatory Fun.

05-29-2014, 03:22 AM

I greet you with this meme. The reason? Lets dive into it.

Being a Student of the Boolit isn't always fun. Sometimes it is actually hard, stinky, sweaty work just to get the metal you need. It taught me something abut hard work and showed me that all you can do is push forward and finish what you started.

We started the day very early in the morning hauling in 140+ pounds of pure lead from the back of my car. This batch of fun would become ingots but not without a few lessons learned. Brassmagnet was first to the plate to show me how the melting and how to pour ingots. This process consisted of putting metal in, melting it, fluxing it, and then pouring ingots. This is an easy thing to do but isn't much fun when you get the fumes and heat in your face while brewing in the "Witches Cauldron". Once you have melted your metal, you flux it. The choice of flux is wax. When you are fluxing with it in a big 50-60 pound cast iron pot, it easily reaches its combustion temperature making fluxing a PITA. After fluxing comes the pouring into ingots. This is done by ladle into a 1 pound or 3 pound bar mold. This isn't so bad, but it just takes time for the ingots to "cool." This is also a good time to check your safety equipment for holes... (Your gloves.) This lesson was learned by picking up a "cooled" ingot with a hole in the glove thus burning my hand. Thankfully this was a small hole but it still hurt. Once ingots cooled, you moved them and poured into the mold until you had no metal left.

This process is easy, it can get a little tedious because your after the final product. Pure Galena, Pb, or simply known as Lead. After all the smoke, the heat, burning myself, came the best reward of all. Self-Satisfaction of achieving a goal and learning new things. Now I would have thought the story would end here... Nope. I got homework for the month.... I have to turn 75 pounds of rifle alloy into boolits. This is the mandatory fun part. So early mornings are going to be the norm for now until this is done but it produce hi quality boolits.

Ill come back at a later time to complete this with pictures as the device is not working with me. Watch this post...

05-30-2014, 03:10 PM
It is all part of the addiction. lol

country gent
05-30-2014, 03:27 PM
I just spent time over te lead pot "proving out an old vallard made mold I repaired. 85* temp and a 700* lead pot isnt fun but cast 100 just to make sure molds dings were repaired and it was casting correctly and good bullets. Welcome to the addiction of casting your own bullets

05-30-2014, 06:19 PM
You gettin' that .32 fired up???

05-30-2014, 10:16 PM
You gettin' that .32 fired up???

Should be soon! :smile:

Green Monster
06-04-2014, 06:58 AM
If it were easy then everyone would be doing it. To me the best part is the final product a loaded and custom designed round for my firearm. Feels good knowing what it is and where it comes from.

06-04-2014, 07:05 AM
If it were easy then everyone would be doing it. To me the best part is the final product a loaded and custom designed round for my firearm. Feels good knowing what it is and where it comes from.


06-08-2014, 08:36 AM
Yep, this bug bites some folks real hard! being able to control the product from start to finish is truly gratifying and gives me a sense of self sufficiency. welcome to a real blast of a hobby.

06-09-2014, 06:15 AM
Ditto here too. The whole process of scrounging lead (not so much any more because i have a 2000 lbs of wheel weights but always looking anyway), smelting ( have accumulated about 24 ingot moulds of different kinds and sizes over the years), collecting moulds (particularly Hensley & Gibbs moulds), casting, sizing and lubing, case preparation, reloading and shooting it up to start all over again has expanded my love for this hobby.
Since I shoot machine guns, it has allowed me to keep shooting (at least the pistol caliber submachine guns) for far less that it used to cost me. 380, 9mm and 45 gets lots more attention now.
And I have traded loaded 38, 9mm and 44 mag for many things, including vegetable seedlings, work on my car, chimney sweeping, etc. I have traded cast bullets for brass that I needed here in this forum.
It really opened up a whole new avenue for me. I now never lack for anything to do.There is always sorting brass, case prep, casting and lube/size work to be done.
Summer seems to be for gardening and yard work and painting the house. Fall is putting food by. Winter and spring seems to be for casting and reloading massive quantities of ammo. The Dillon 550 certainly gets a workout. (last manic reloading session I did 5000 9mm's over a couple of weeks - I am all set for a while). Shooting is whenever I can get a little time to run to the range. Good thing it is only 15 minutes from the house.
....then I get to start the whole process all over again!