View Full Version : Casting Article,, Lots of photo's to help you along.

03-31-2008, 12:33 AM
I put together this article for the m1911.org ezine on casting.
It is not so much as a how to but I have been getting a lot of PMs on how to cast so I wanted to put something together to give folks the general idea of casting pistol bullets.
I did get Robert Bank to help me edit it and since he helped me get started in casting a few years back I respect his opinion.
Check it out and please let me know what you think.

03-31-2008, 07:49 AM
It's a good article with outstanding photos.

03-31-2008, 08:38 AM
I wish I could have seen the artical before I started casting.Great job!

03-31-2008, 08:57 AM
Well done, Hunter!

03-31-2008, 09:15 AM
Very nicely done, indeed.


03-31-2008, 09:38 AM
Well done Hunter! Good Pics, would be most valuable to a beginning caster!

03-31-2008, 09:55 AM
Very thorough coverage; well-written & abundantly illustrated too!

03-31-2008, 10:01 AM
Thank you for putting this together.

03-31-2008, 10:20 AM
Bad Hunter We will know have more shooters on the hunt for that big pail of WW!!! Good job on the article have fun clint

03-31-2008, 10:36 AM

Your article is without doubt the best one-source tutorial for getting started in the boolit casting game I've seen to date. With the blessings of yourself and 45 Nut, a link from here to your article would be of great value to our new casters. I would have REALLY liked a step-by-step guide with your EXCELLENT photos when I started this hobby.

03-31-2008, 11:20 AM
The pin-heads at 1911.org should deserve so good.

03-31-2008, 12:38 PM
Great job. EVERY possible thing a person would need to know is covered. Well ok,one slight detail omitted. With my love of cats and efforts to preserve and protect them,there should be a warning that cats should not be around when you cast or smelt. This would be for the safety of the caster as well but of course my interest would be more so for cats. To depict this hazzard maybe a picture of a cat with a little molten lead on it, nah that would not be graphic enough---you really want to drive the point home. How about a huge pile of cats with a whole bunch of molten lead on them.

03-31-2008, 12:47 PM
Really nice article and your attention to detail for us newbies is really appreciated. Now I have one request...........is it possible for you to put it in a PDF file for download for usins that would like to save it to our 'puters?

03-31-2008, 12:51 PM
Outstanding article!
Great pics!

If I may make one comment.

The pics of an UN protected hand while stirring the pot is, well, unprotected.

If you could I'd opt for another showing a gloved hand just for extra safety.

Lloyd Smale
03-31-2008, 01:18 PM
nice job.

03-31-2008, 01:38 PM
Excellent--Great pictures

03-31-2008, 01:52 PM
CarpetMan will never admit it but his discovery of kitty litter as a fluxing agent came about one day when he poured his wife's cat's kitty litter into his RCBS Furnace in an attempt to trick the kitten into jumping in it. Cat was too smart but he couldn't outrun a 5mm Sheridan pellet. Sic Semper Cattus.

03-31-2008, 02:03 PM
Well done and good pic's

mike in co
03-31-2008, 03:00 PM
a note on zinc ww's...they are not all riveted. now adays most are cast just like pb. the good news is that most of them actually say zinc on them(zn) or some zn alloy.

i did a 113 lb 5 gal bucket of ww's on sat. it contained 13 lbs of various zn ww, 25 lbs of clips, a couple pounds of trash and produced 73 lbs of ingots( this was mixed soft tape on's and clip on's, used for shot making)
i had some tape on's marked fe.....they were not pure iron , but what are they ?

maybe we need a sticky on ww identification ?

bottom line, better to throw out a questionable ww, than ruin the lot of alloy.

mike in co

03-31-2008, 03:03 PM
Very good article.

03-31-2008, 03:27 PM
nice article. very informative and easy for a newbie to follow.
well done!

03-31-2008, 11:25 PM
Thank yall so much for all the positive comments.
I have tried to cast with welders gloves on but I just cannot do it. I believe if care is exercised then all should be well.
Yall are more than welcome to copy or post it anywhere you would like. I am by no means an expert but I had hoped to put something together for those interested in casting to give them an idea.
It was well received at m1911.org as well as there are several beginning casters over there (I usually direct them to this site as a great reference as I have learned very much over hear).
I have not seen any of the Zinc w-w that the clip is cast into the Zinc but I will mention that in the discussion thread for that article.
Thanks again so much for the great comments, I referenced this site as well as the Lyman books.
I do not know how to do a pdf file but if you can copy it please do.

04-01-2008, 02:56 AM
Hunter, my 10c worth - top article and makes things really easy to understand. This needs to be read by anybody thinking of casting their own. Well done.

04-01-2008, 07:03 AM
I agree on the gloves. Being able to feel what you are doing is sometimes more important than an extra safety measure. Besides, burn ointment isn't real expensive. Cotton Masons gloves work much better than welders gloves.

Good job!

BTW- Thats appears to be a nice website. A cut above the average "I got's a Kimber SupertacticaleliteoperatorHRTspecial with 4 rail lights, 2 lazers and and Kitchen Magician attached".

Ed Barrett
04-01-2008, 04:53 PM
Great article, Hope I see some more!

04-01-2008, 07:35 PM
Thanks again yall, the positive comments from this forum really mean a lot to me.
M1911.org is a pretty good forum. Many complain it is over moderated (and that may be so but we try to run it squeaky clean).
This is my first attempt at a casting article but I have reviewed several Government Models and the Hornady L-N-L press (I have linked a few to this site as well).
I am also working on a review of the Hornady case feeder for Steve Johnson at Hornady.

BTY the advice on the .30 rifle bullet molds is working out great, thanks for that as well.

04-02-2008, 12:50 AM
Wear the gloves guys. I,m a southpaw and wear a welders glove on the right hand and a lighweight leather glove on the left. And for crying out loud don't forget eye protection.
I cast just outside the shop when the weather is good. A couple years ago I had added several ingots to the old Lyman pot and was performing other work while the lead melted. I came walking past the pot just as a grasshopper flew into it. Explosion! Glasses saved my eyes. Bad burns on my right hand that got infected. Was afraid that I would loose the hand for a while. Neil

04-02-2008, 07:48 AM
Wear the gloves guys. I,m a southpaw and wear a welders glove on the right hand and a lighweight leather glove on the left. And for crying out loud don't forget eye protection.
I cast just outside the shop when the weather is good. A couple years ago I had added several ingots to the old Lyman pot and was performing other work while the lead melted. I came walking past the pot just as a grasshopper flew into it. Explosion! Glasses saved my eyes. Bad burns on my right hand that got infected. Was afraid that I would loose the hand for a while. Neil

I'm thinking one of your ingots melted, with some moisture in it to cause the tinsel fairy. A grasshopper most likely wouldn't be able to fly under the surface of melted lead.

04-03-2008, 01:52 AM
Looks like a good article.

I don't wear gloves, can't feel what is going on well and just don't
like it. The only burns have been very minor, but I have noted that
it doesn't take me very long to inspect a freshly dropped boolit. . . . :roll:

Good job. :drinks:


01-10-2009, 12:24 PM
Great article Cast Boolits has the best members off all the forums

01-10-2009, 04:48 PM
Good article. I added the link to my "What every Newbie Reloader must know" thread on G&G. I hope you don't mind. It started out with just a few links, but it keeps growing.

01-10-2009, 07:05 PM
Hunter, I put it in a .pdf file. If you want I can email it to you.


01-10-2009, 11:13 PM
Adam that would be great, thank you.

01-11-2009, 12:37 AM

Hats off to you sir, a job well done.

So many here can only wish we would have had such fine instructions to begin with when our casting hobby/careers began.

Over time you will have eventually helped save many poor souls a lot of misery and hard learned lessons.



01-11-2009, 12:55 AM
Thank you Murphy.
I have to give Robert Bank (a member hear) credit for teaching me casting over the phone.
He lives in Canada and I am in NC.
With his instructions, this forum, and the Lyman manual I managed to be a successful caster.
I hope my article inspires some to take up the hobby and helps them along. I am by no means an expert but I do enjoy writing.
Thank you again for the kind words.

01-11-2009, 10:45 AM
Great article Hunter wish I would have been so informed in the begining of my casting endevours. I will hope this will be the article every new caster has the oppertunity to read.

Russel Nash
01-11-2009, 04:13 PM
I think it's a great article too.

Hey, I don't mean to nit pick, but I am wondering if those weren't actualy steel wheelweights instead of zinc.


01-11-2009, 04:19 PM
I believe they are zinc wheel weights. Before I added that picture I showed it to a few others and they agreed they looked like zinc wheel weights.
If they were steel wouldn't they rust where the coating was scratched off? I know zinc will corrode but not rust.

Russel Nash
01-12-2009, 02:58 AM
^^^ I'm just sayin' because my very first attempts at melting wheelweights, I followed the advice of a few folks here and took side cutters to each one before I threw it in the pot, just to be sure.

The ones I couldn't cut, I put to the side, thinking they were zinc.

And them some other nice poster here mentioned that it might be a steel wheelweight and to take a magnet to it.

That's what I did, and sure enough the magnet stuck to the wheelweight in several different spots.

And they looked just like the ones you pictured.

Anywhooo.... not to pick nits really... It's more of an FYI kinda thing.

Zinc... steel... what have ya... as long as you don't have the turkey fryer and dutch oven going full tilt, at least you won't be worrying the zinc ones melting.

After going through a couple of buckets by hand, you figure out what melts and what doesn't, without a magnet and without sidecutters.

I really liked your pictures of the wax for flux and how it flames up.

I had read here in several places that's what it would do, but I had no idea it would "poof" up the way it did the first time I did it. Eeeekkk!!

So that kinda spooked me off of using wax. I use a stick now and stirr and stirr and stirr. All the crap spins into the center of the melt.

I might go back to wax though, after seeing your pics.


01-12-2009, 12:01 PM
Good article. Contact Will and have him put it on castpics for all to enjoy and get the use out of./beagle

01-12-2009, 12:58 PM
Nice article,,,,and very good pictures....as they say pictures are worth a thousand words.
GLOVES....well truth be told I dont use them either BUT....good safety glasses are a MUST !!!

05-26-2009, 10:37 AM
Congrats..........Great pictures.

01-29-2010, 01:47 PM
Very very good! should be a sticky link on here, it answers every question a new caster could have.
I wish someone had warned ME that the beeswax would catch fire when I started casting RB, I had a bad moment there the first time I smelted and the flames appeared. LOL

Slow Elk 45/70
01-29-2010, 07:09 PM
Good, now put it where the new shooters/casters will find it and read it

01-29-2010, 10:03 PM
I used the strainer from my turkey fryer kit and it works great to remove the steel clips from wheel weights.

Put the wheel weights in the strainer, when they melt, pull the strainer out and it gets almost all the clips in one fell swoop.

Add more wheel weights to the strainer and repeat until the pot is full.

01-30-2010, 04:32 PM
Great article and excellent photos. Many have said it before but I would loved to have access to that article when I started out. I was so ignorant that I failed to buy handles for my Lee 6 banger and I used it with just the sprue handle and two pairs of gloves. It was hot work. See:


I consider myself a pretty good caster after 16 years of this foolishness and I have over 60 molds presently. But I will admit that I learned more about castin' boolits from this site in a few years than I had learned in the previous decade of blindly going on my own merry way.

I hope this makes it into a sticky in the classic section where we can point newbies who stumble onto our site. There is much valuable information presented in a simple and graduated way for anybody who wants to learn.

Great job and go pour yourself an adult beverage and enjoy the good you have done.

05-03-2010, 08:32 PM
props for a great job thanks

05-05-2010, 11:09 AM
Nice article answers alot of questions for beginning casters.

05-08-2010, 01:21 PM
Very nicely done! Great info for a person just getting into casting boolits!

05-08-2010, 01:50 PM
Most excellent! Is this article saved someplace where I could print the whole thing out? I want just the article, not all the website jazz all around it. Does anybody have a file of it?

09-18-2010, 11:20 PM
Good article. I added the link to my "What every Newbie Reloader must know" thread on G&G. I hope you don't mind. It started out with just a few links, but it keeps growing.
do you have a link to said thread?

bruce drake
09-21-2010, 10:27 PM
Great article and I'll second the admonition to wear gloves.

I've casted for over a decade without gloves but last fall I splattered about an ounce of lead onto my wrist by accident. Half of it landed on my watchband but the rest poured onto my wrist which caused me to develop a blister about the size of a half dollar to instantly develop after I peeled the lead off my wrist. It took about a month for the sore to heal over but the scar is still there to remind me about not wearing gloves while casting.