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Thread: 22 Bator and 222rem loading success

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    JonB_in_Glencoe's Avatar
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    22 Bator and 222rem loading success

    I finally got around to loading the 222
    I had planned on using the HM˛ 225-62, but the throat or bore was a bit too large on my newly acquired savage 340D. Next I tried the Newest 22 bator that Lee cut for midsouth. The nose of that boolit measures .221 which is a little bigger than the HM˛. When I test cycled a Bator dummy round at the OAL I was hoping to use, I seen the Lands gently scratched the frosty coating of the nose on all sides. I was so happy...it should be a real shooter.

    I'm starting out with a Rx7 load (13.6gr) that should get the Bator going to around 2250fps. Now for some better weather.

    also, I picked up an older Bonanza benchrest seater die for the 222 at a gunshow last fall. Boy is that the cat's meow for seating a boolit. The sliding case guide is spring loaded. I 'WILL' be looking for more of those in other rifle calibers !

    Last edited by JonB_in_Glencoe; 07-16-2018 at 10:31 PM. Reason: changed title back

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    Boolit Man
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    Keep me posted. While I have a lifetime supply of 50 grain soft points loaded up for my rifle, I also have a whole butter dish of Bator's I cast last year that need to be used.

    jim

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    Boolit Master uscra112's Avatar
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    Dang! Now I've got competition for those Bonanza dies !
    flectere si nequeo superos, acheronta movebo

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    Boolit Master
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    I like your boolit tray! Best part about 22 cast is that you use so little lead for a whole lot of shooting.

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    bump to top

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    Boolit Master trixter's Avatar
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    I bought the 'Bator' mold when it first came out and lube/sized + gas checked a bunch of them and they shoot very well in my Mossberg 223 bolt gun, I started with 12gr Unique, and was very happy when there could be no 22 rounds found. Then Lee came out with the C225-55-RF. This is what looked to me to be a little better designed boolit than the Bator. I used the same procedure and I have had great results with the newer design. I have started powder coating them and shooting them without a gas check. It is a work in progress, still looking for the sweet spot, but having a lot of fun getting there. I love this hobby.

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    Trixter,
    The older style Lee Bator is a short fat boolit, that weighs near 50gr. and does well in 1:14 (like the savage 340D I posted about) and even a 1:16 twist rate barrel (my Ruger #3 22 hornet has a 1:16), but will likely NOT do well in faster twist barrels that are typical in 223/556 guns. That new Lee C225-55-RF is a close copy of the RCBS, which will shoot better in most 223/556 guns.

  8. #8
    Boolit Bub
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    Forgive my ignorance but I am unfamiliar with HM2 or Bator moulds. Enlightenment if you please. I am looking to start casting for both the triple deuce and my K hornet.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cavhasbeen View Post
    Forgive my ignorance but I am unfamiliar with HM2 or Bator moulds. Enlightenment if you please. I am looking to start casting for both the triple deuce and my K hornet.
    The first thing you should know is, neither of these are available as "new" from the commercial market...so if you find that you'd like to acquire one or both of these molds, you'll have to look to the used/2nd-hand market.

    Further info, The Bator was a Midsouth "custom", made by Lee for Midsouth. The Bator molds (pre-2013) suffer from a large variance of size, due to poor tolerances from one batch to the next, most of which were incorrect to specs, but I find the molds made with the new style blocks manufactured after 2013 (when Lee improved their manufacturing techniques), until the time they(Midsouth) discontinued the Bator, when Lee introduced the C225-55-RF as a standard stock item. The C225-55-RF is often mistakenly called the Bator (due to the way Midsouth's website advertised it), but is clearly NOT anything close to the Bator, It is very close to a clone of the RCBS 22-55-SP. The HM2 is similar looking to the RCBS, but has "improvements" made to the design to better FIT the typical 556 chamber of most AR type guns.

    There have been enough posts about them to assemble a few books about each boolit. If you type "HM2 225-62" and "22 Bator", respectively into google custom search, you'll have hours and hours of reading to enlighten yourself. Below, I posted one link from each search, that I think is the most pertinent information to each mold.

    http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...-mold-225-62-1

    http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...r-mold-caution

    If you have any specific questions, be sure to ask.

  10. #10
    Boolit Bub
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    Thanks much Mr JonB. Very interesting links you provided. Seems those were mostly gas gun oriented moulds. I think I'll be searching for a mould that casts a bit lighter, especially for the Hornet. My apologies for asking before I employed a search engine.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cavhasbeen View Post
    Thanks much Mr JonB. Very interesting links you provided. Seems those were mostly gas gun oriented moulds. I think I'll be searching for a mould that casts a bit lighter, especially for the Hornet. My apologies for asking before I employed a search engine.
    no apologies needed, the info in text that I typed would be difficult to find in a concise 3 paragraph package.
    I listed the links and how I searched, because there is sooo much info about those two molds.

    I recently ordered a NOE 225-37-FN for my Ruger #3 (22 hornet) with 1:16 twist, I've cast some, but haven't loaded any yet.
    http://noebulletmolds.com/smf/index.php?topic=179.0

  12. #12
    Boolit Master
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    The .22 Bator is my all 'round favorite .22 cast bullet. It really shines when used as-cast (.226) in my pre-war German kiplauf 5.6x35R. The gun has generous throat and bore dimensions and the bullet fits it well. The fast twist of 1-9" notwithstanding, it'll put five well under an inch at 50 yards- cast of COWW's+tin and driven by 6.0 grains 2400.

  13. #13
    Boolit Bub
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    Quote Originally Posted by JonB_in_Glencoe View Post
    no apologies needed, the info in text that I typed would be difficult to find in a concise 3 paragraph package.
    I listed the links and how I searched, because there is sooo much info about those two molds.

    I recently ordered a NOE 225-37-FN for my Ruger #3 (22 hornet) with 1:16 twist, I've cast some, but haven't loaded any yet.
    http://noebulletmolds.com/smf/index.php?topic=179.0
    Out of curiosity, did you go with gas check or plain base? I have not yet started down the GC rabbit hole as most of my casting efforts have been either pistol or sub sonic .308.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cavhasbeen View Post
    Out of curiosity, did you go with gas check or plain base? I have not yet started down the GC rabbit hole as most of my casting efforts have been either pistol or sub sonic .308.
    Great question.
    I bought the GC style.

    Long story...
    I have several 22 molds...maybe a dozen? ...all GC style.
    anyway, years ago, I had a Ranch Dog mold 22 cal 50gr RF, tumble lube grooves, plain base. I could cast boolits that looked perfect with that mold...the bases looked perfect, but I could never get that boolit to shoot well. I had several 22 centerfire guns at that time...none liked that boolit. I was never so happy, as the day I sold that mold. I wrote off it's inaccuracy to the plain base and vowed to never buy a plain base 22 cal mold again. Also, shortly after selling that mold, I bought a FreeChex III, gas check die set for 22 cal.

    PS, with all that said, Hindsight tells me my problem may have been the Lee seater dies in the different 22 calibers I was loading at that time, as later on, I learned there is some slop in Lee's seater Design and the large meplat of the RanchDog no doubt didn't align well and I probably had varying amounts of runout when loading the Ranch Dog. A problem I solved about the time I started this thread, as I mentioned the Bonanza Benchrest seater in the OP.
    Last edited by JonB_in_Glencoe; 07-11-2018 at 12:59 AM. Reason: added PS

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check