Graf & SonsStainLess Steel MediaLee PrecisionADvertise here
Inline FabricationRotoMetals2Titan Reloading

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 35

Thread: New to casting and looking for a push in the right direction

  1. #1
    Boolit Mold
    Join Date
    Jun 2017
    Location
    Working in Phoenix, but often in so cal
    Posts
    4

    New to casting and looking for a push in the right direction

    As stated, I've been reloading for a bit, but have just been buying jacketed bullets. A couple months ago I saw a youtube video and it got the ideas rolling. Ever since then I've been reading. So far casting seems like reloading in the sense that it's complicatedly simple. So, I've decided to start with only a few calibers and work from there. I have a Rock Island 1911 45ACP that will be my first attempt. I'm mainly just looking for reassurance that I'm starting off on the right foot, but any pointers are appreciated. The only shooting I really ever do is on a range.

    For lead I've got 100lbs of pure lead, and grandparents who've got an Intertype machine they no longer use. Which gives me a good bit of lynotype I can pull from. I recently found the alloy calculator which, I'm very thankful for, and see that if I mixed those two in a 1:5 ratio I should come out with a hardness around 11ish. Which seems to be about what I need, from what I can tell.

    I'm planning on a 10 lee pot, and can snag some of the old smelting equipment from the print shop. They've got some flux left over, but I don't know if it's any good still. I've got plenty saw dust and am figuring on using that.

    As far as a mold is concerned I've got my eye on Lee's 6 cavity TL452-230-2R. From what I've read the SWC seem to give people trouble in 1911. My only concerns for a mold is something I can get to shoot in a decent group without giving me too much of a hassle to load. In reality most anything I load will probably out shoot me in accuracy, but it'd be nice to have a good starting platform. I slugged the barrel and it came out at .451, so I'm not sure if I'm going to need to size them. I'm also planning on starting off with powder coating to keep equipment cost down.

    I've read a couple books, but don't know enough to know what I don't know. Though I figure it's time to give it a try, and find out what I don't know.

  2. #2
    Boolit Master chutesnreloads's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Central Texas
    Posts
    187
    Best advice I can give,and looks like you've already started some of it,is to read read read.There's a lot more info than you can absorb in a few years just in the stickies.Would advise you towards a 20 lb. melter though.

  3. #3
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Deary, Ideeeeeeho
    Posts
    2,230
    Lastmile,

    Do you happen to live in the Moscow, Idaho - Deary, Idaho area.

    If so, let us get together and do some hands on.

    I need to have an early morning casting session soon.

    Crusty Deary Ol'Coot

  4. #4
    Moderator Emeritus


    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    SW Montana
    Posts
    9,591
    First thing to do is post your general location in profile. What you have planned should work, I shoot a ly452460 200 gr swc in my Kimber with no feed issues.
    [The Montana Gianni] Front sight and squeeze

  5. #5
    Boolit Master

    Wayne Smith's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Hampton Roads, Virginia
    Posts
    9,581
    I'd say you are starting right. You can and probably will look at other molds (it is addicting!) but that's a good start and a good low intensity cartridge to start with. Only one better might be the 38Special. You can actually use that pure in the 45ACP but it would be a waste. Any hardness you can add would be good, but don't go above your planed 11. You may hit your sweet spot the first time, but don't give up if you don't.
    Wayne the Shrink

    There is no 'right' that requires me to work for you or you to work for me!

  6. #6
    Boolit Master Sasquatch-1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Martinsburg, WV
    Posts
    1,915
    Plus one on the 20 pound pot. Easier to add lead as you go. I think I would start with a 2 cavity mold. It is easier to get good bullets fast when first starting your run. Also, if the mold doesn't work for you, you are not out as much.

    The flux you are talking about, is that the blue stuff in the round tin pack? Had some a print shop gave me a long time ago that was fantastic.
    A vote for anyone other then the conservative candidates is a vote for the liberal candidates.

  7. #7
    Boolit Master

    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    England,Ar
    Posts
    2,689
    Welcome Aboard! I agree, you are off to a good start. The 45 is pretty easy to load and cast for, so good 1st choice there. I also suggest starting with a 20# pot. Read the stickies on smelting, caring for molds and anything about safety that you can find. Give that new mold a scrubbing and go to casting!

  8. #8
    Boolit Man Markopolo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Location
    Remote island in SE Alaska
    Posts
    124
    Not sure if I would start right off powder coating though.. take it one step at a time.. learn what it takes to get good boolits rolling out first, then shooting... once real comfy with that for a while, then consider the whole powder coating thing... only one new twist at a time, like riding a bike.. not many of us started riding a unicycle and then went to a 2 wheeler. And most of all, enjoy the satisfaction of rolling your own.. ��
    Any technology not understood, can seem like Magic!!!

    I will love the Lord with all my heart, all my soul, and all my mind.

  9. #9
    Boolit Master
    sutherpride59's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2016
    Location
    Living in Georgia but from Texas
    Posts
    219
    One big price of advice I will give you is hardness even in 45acp does matter. Lots of people tell you you can shoot darn near pure lead in 45acp! True you can shoot pure lead without leading but the accuracy is garbage. You want your alloy to be the same hardness as pure clip on wheel weight alloy. To save myself from using up all my clip on wheel weight lead I cast with 50/50+2%sn and ice water quench to get the same hardness. Plus I don't have to wait for the boolits to cool down. I don't powder coat but with powder coating a lot of people over look the hardness they are shooting and don't achieve the accuracy they desire. Also for powder coat my buddy who does it found its way easier if you preheat to boolits to 150 for a couple of minutes first, makes the powder stick better.

  10. #10
    Boolit Master pjames32's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    Location
    NW New Mexico
    Posts
    565
    My alloy for 45ACP calculates at 10.4bhn and has good accuracy with minimal leading. I cast a 200gr SWC from an old Lyman mold. I'd suggest a 20lb pot and start with a 2 cavity mold. Don't over use the linotype!
    Good luck on your new habit.
    NRA Benefactor Member

  11. #11
    Boolit Master BNE's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    SC
    Posts
    738
    As you can tell, every body has an opinion!! Mine are as follows:
    get the 20 pound pot
    get the 6 hole mold
    Fluxing with sawdust is great, and you probably won't need to flux a lot as
    Print type is usually clean.
    Not sure why one person suggested not powder coating from the start. I had lots of trouble and lots of leading in my .45 until I switched to powder coating. I almost quit casting due to the whole lube thing.

    Go slow, and ask questions just like you are and lots of good folks here will jump in to help.
    I'm a Happy Clinger.

  12. #12
    Boolit Man

    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Walla Walla, WA
    Posts
    149
    All good advice above. The one thing I would comment on is to get the proper safety equipment. It isn't expensive but can save your hide. Eye protection, gloves, long sleeves, don't wear sandals (my screw up), at the minimum for starters. This is a great hobby. Welcome to the forum.

  13. #13
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Posts
    450
    I would say you're right on track. Don't over think it and have fun. I started with a 20 lb pot from lee and a 2 cavity mold from lee. I use sawdust and I powdercoat. Make sure to pm smoke (he is a vendor sponsor) and ask him lots of questions about powder coating. And all of the guys on here are SUPER helpful. Welcome to the madness. It's fun, keep it that way. Be safe and enjoy.

  14. #14
    Boolit Master




    TexasGrunt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2016
    Location
    Kaufman, Texas!
    Posts
    1,049
    1. 20 lb pot.
    2. Get a NOE or Arsenal mold, you'll thank me later for this.
    3. I've got 13 1911 pistols and they all feed SWC just fine. I just bought a NOE 155 SWC mold, for me the savings in lead is going to be great.
    4. Get the NOE push-through sizing die and both a .452 and .453 bushing. If you only want to buy one bushing get the .453
    5. You can powder coat from the start or just go to Hi-Tek. I'm doing more and more Hi-Tek.
    Semper Fi!


    Currently casting for .223, .308, .30-06, .30-40 Krag, 9mm, .38/.357, 10mm, 44 Mag and 45 ACP.

    I like strange looking boolits!

    NRA Patriot Life Endowment member.

  15. #15
    Perma - Banned



    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Color Me Gone
    Posts
    6,780
    Accurate makes the best molds. I would start with the Lee and then get the best, Accurate.
    I like PC but Hi Tek works
    Your plan is sound.

  16. #16
    Boolit Mold
    Join Date
    Jun 2017
    Location
    Working in Phoenix, but often in so cal
    Posts
    4
    Wow, To say I was surprised by all the responses would be an understatement. I really appreciate all of the advice, thank you.
    Well, currently I'm living in Phoenix AZ, but I tend to move around quite a bit. I'll probably ended up doing most of my casting in So Cal, because I doubt the apartment complex I'm living in would be excited if I did it here. That and I enjoy going back to the home town while I'm working this close.
    I'll have to looking into Hi-tek more. I've read a bit on it, but there's quite a few options out there. So, it was overlooked for the most part.
    The advice about starting with a two cavity mold seem like sound advice to me. Plus saving a few pennies will help out. Took about a 50% pay cut with this job, but it'll help to get me where I want to be. So, I'll snag a lee mold to get started and spend the money saved on a push through sizer. Which reminds me of one of my questions. I hear discrepancies on sizing. It seems that some people say +.001 or +.002. Is it just one of those divided camp issues, or just depends on what the specific gun prefers?
    Thanks again, I really appreciate the advice.

  17. #17
    Boolit Master




    Bzcraig's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Nampa, ID
    Posts
    3,509
    Welcome aboard! It shows that you have done your homework and I agree you're getting started right. Over time and as the addiction progresses you will need additional boolit sizers. Seriously consider buying the NOE sizer, it's a little bit more money to start but cheaper in the long run. I have a lot of Lee equipment and not a Lee basher by any stretch of the imagination but I have never gotten a sizer from Lee that sized boolits as labeled, all were on the small side. As far as how much over groove diameter is best, minimum is .001, .002 is ideal, and .003 is doable in MOST BUT NOT ALL cases. Much will depend on your throat. I have a Para Elite with .451 groove as yours that I couldn't get to chamber any of the boolits I cast and even some jacketed bullets were wrong. Sent the barrel to member Dougguy to work his magic and it will now chamber everything I've tried so far.
    "Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same......." - Ronald Reagan

    "It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died. Rather, we should thank God that such men lived." - George Patton

    The second amendment is a nail on which hangs a picture of freedom - member Alex 4x4 Tver, Russia

  18. #18
    Boolit Master




    Echo's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Tucson AZ
    Posts
    4,223
    The only thing I can add is the 1/5 alloy could use a little extra Sn - Lino is only 4% Sn, so cutting it like that gives only .008 Sn, that I don't think is enough. I like between 2 & 3% - anything over 3% is wasteful, to my thinking.
    My own smelting effort involves WW's & monotype, 7/1, with an additional 1% Sn to bring the Sn up to 2+%, and it works for me...
    Echo
    USAF Ret
    DPS, 2600
    NRA Benefactor
    O&U
    One of the most endearing sights in the world is the vision of a naked good-looking woman leaving the bedroom to make breakfast. Bolivar Shagnasty (I believe that Lazarus Long also said it, but I can't find any record of it.)

  19. #19
    Boolit Master

    Wayne Smith's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Hampton Roads, Virginia
    Posts
    9,581
    Only thing you are missing is a hotplate to pre-heat your mold. I have no problem someone starting with a six cavity Lee mold - just realize you can fill two or three cavities at a time until you find your pace.
    Wayne the Shrink

    There is no 'right' that requires me to work for you or you to work for me!

  20. #20
    Boolit Master
    WHITETAIL's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    NE Pa.
    Posts
    1,060
    Like what was said, everyone has a opinion.
    I agree with most of the things said.
    What works for me is.
    A 2 cav. RCBS mold,
    A 20lb. bottom pour pot.
    A 450 sizer / luber.
    A Lyman cast book.
    Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy!
    Ben Franklin

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
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