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Thread: Another method of standing bullets up when powdercoating

  1. #1
    Boolit Master
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    Another method of standing bullets up when powdercoating

    I've tried dry tumble, dump in a basket and bake method and have not been satisfied with bullets sticking together. I've also used the dry tumble and stand each bullet on its base and I like the results best with this method but it's a pain standing each bullet up in a neat orderly fashion. I've found a faster method that provides the results I want and is much easier that I thought I would share with the group here.

    I've used plastic trays, retrieved from dumpster diving at the range and screwed them, using 2 screws per tray, to a piece of 3/4" plywood which is the same size as an aluminum baking sheet that fits my toaster over (10" X 12").

    Shake the bullets in a #5 dish, without BBs until coated. Pick each bullet out and drop it nose first into each hole.



    When all holes are filled place the aluminum plate over the bullet filled trays.



    Hold both top and bottom together firmly and flip over. Lift plywood and trays straight up to leave bullets standing nose up on the non stick foil covered aluminum plate.




    Insert plate into oven and bake as usual. It takes me 20 minutes to fill 360 holes with bullets. By the time the batch in the oven is done baking the next tray is filled and ready to bake.

  2. #2
    Boolit Master




    Bzcraig's Avatar
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    Since you're already picking each boolit out of the shaking bowl why add the extra steps?
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  3. #3
    Boolit Man
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bzcraig View Post
    Since you're already picking each boolit out of the shaking bowl why add the extra steps?
    Because he had a hard time getting them lined up in an orderly fashion, great idea, I'll have to use it since I don't have the patience to get them properly lined up.
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  4. #4
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bzcraig View Post
    Since you're already picking each boolit out of the shaking bowl why add the extra steps?
    I just started doing this a couple of weeks ago, myself. I've done it both ways, and I really like this new method because:
    • It's easier to drop them nose first into the ammo tray then to stand them on end, in my opinion.
    • I only have one tray for the oven so I can be preparing the next batch while the tray is in the oven, and that speeds things up A LOT.

    An added small benefit is that every time I do this for a new batch that I cast, I'm made aware of exactly how many came out of my casting session without having to count them one-by-one.

    I'm a big believer in this new method. It's not an extra step, really - turning the ammo trays over to stand them up on the oven tray only takes a few seconds. For me, at least, it doubles my output since I only have one tray for the oven.

  5. #5
    Boolit Master OS OK's Avatar
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    This looks like a pretty good way to do things...those soldiers are lined up like good Marines...when I'm done setting mine they look like a platoon of drunken Sailors!

    Oh well...it doesn't matter to me, they get their little selves cooked eventually.
    As you PC and time passes...as you either have or don't have 'OCD' you will tend to modify your method by your drive to produce 'your' perfect PD'd boolit...what matters is that you are 'getting-er-done'.

    Nice work!
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  6. #6
    Boolit Master
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    When I was dumping my boolits in a mesh tray or basket the boolits either stuck together or stuck to the basket. Sure water quenching helped to break them apart but I always had pieces of PC paint stuck to other boolits or the basket mesh and when I broke the boolits free it removed some paint exposing bare lead. Yes, my OCD kicked in and that bugged me to no end.


    Bzcraig:
    Previously I was able to align the boolits, after picking them out of the #5 bowl, one at a time. I just placed them in an approximate albeit a wavy row on the baking sheet, then I would use a straight edge to straighten that row up and push that row up close to the previous row.

    It takes a LOT more time to pick, orient, invert and place the boolits on the baking sheet than it does to just let them plop down into the white plastic trays. Also when the boolits hit the bottom of the white trays the tiny bit of gravity force knocks off any excess powder paint. IMO that alone makes the paint coverage more consistent on each boolit.

    I wasn't aware of anyone else using this method and I'm not claiming to have invented the idea. I'm just sharing a new idea (to me) and the success that I'm having with it. Initially I was concerned thinking the white plastic trays might scrape off some paint when the boolits fell down into each hole but that is not the case. I'd like to encourage you guys to try this method and provide some feedback to the group. I think you will like it as Schrag4 has discovered this too.

  7. #7
    Boolit Master OS OK's Avatar
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    Initially I was concerned thinking the white plastic trays might scrape off some paint when the boolits fell down into each hole but that is not the case.

    That was my first impression too, I'm glad you mentioned this...I may just have to give this a try. My cooking tray is much smaller, have to do more batches for a large quantity...but...old greyback retirees have the time to tinker!

    I still use a pair of large tweezers and have gotten pretty fast with those but...I tap the tweezers on the side of the tray before placing the cast to knock that excess PC off...think I'll still do that so PC will not accumulate in the trays and dump back on the cook tray when I flip the filled trays to the cook sheet.

    Gotta luv this PC'ing of our casts...I think someone like you comes up with innovations every month or so!
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  8. #8
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    I salute these ideas of trays as well as straight edge to 'tighten up' the rows with one another.

    right now I've moved to the dump in colander to remove BBs and most of PC and then dump colander onto wire trays. I now actually have a bit of free time between putting trays into oven.

    It's working for me so I'll stay with it for now but always good to see what else is working out there.
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  9. #9
    Boolit Master
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    For the record, I saw this method on a YouTube video a while back but just recently gave it a try. My most recently attempted method before this was to dump them into a wire mesh to let excess fall through then onto the parchment paper, but I hated that method because I had way too many stick together, even if I dumped them in cold water right away. I’ve been thinking that method could still work if there was something between the tray and the paper, like a grill, so that boolits would like up on their sides, end-to-end. Spacing would have to be just right and it still might end up being more trouble than it’s worth. Until I can dump them but not have a bunch touching each other, I will stick with the method in the OP.

  10. #10
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    Great idea if it works better for you! Goferit. MY 1/2" wire mesh UNDER the NSAF forms a nice grid to set PC'd boolits on as noted on my thread elsewhere. Out of bowl, onto cook tray: BINGO. YMMV.
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by igolfat8 View Post
    When I was dumping my boolits in a mesh tray or basket the boolits either stuck together or stuck to the basket. Sure water quenching helped to break them apart but I always had pieces of PC paint stuck to other boolits or the basket mesh and when I broke the boolits free it removed some paint exposing bare lead. Yes, my OCD kicked in and that bugged me to no end.


    Bzcraig:
    Previously I was able to align the boolits, after picking them out of the #5 bowl, one at a time. I just placed them in an approximate albeit a wavy row on the baking sheet, then I would use a straight edge to straighten that row up and push that row up close to the previous row.

    It takes a LOT more time to pick, orient, invert and place the boolits on the baking sheet than it does to just let them plop down into the white plastic trays. Also when the boolits hit the bottom of the white trays the tiny bit of gravity force knocks off any excess powder paint. IMO that alone makes the paint coverage more consistent on each boolit.

    I wasn't aware of anyone else using this method and I'm not claiming to have invented the idea. I'm just sharing a new idea (to me) and the success that I'm having with it. Initially I was concerned thinking the white plastic trays might scrape off some paint when the boolits fell down into each hole but that is not the case. I'd like to encourage you guys to try this method and provide some feedback to the group. I think you will like it as Schrag4 has discovered this too.
    Didn't mean to sound critical, was curious that I might have missed something and I was, the OCD! LOL. I get it, you just have a worse case than I do........sure is a purdy operation though.
    "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

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  12. #12
    Boolit Buddy
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    igolfat8, I like the looks of those finished bullets! My thoughts are that if you attached those sorter trays together to form a sheet and place that over a screen instead of the plywood? That way you could shake out excess powder. I don't know if that's even an issue, but the method of coating, shaking in a plastic bowl is not that different than shaking off excess in plastic trays. Your trays look solid in the bottom and round shaped for the individual bullets, but the tray I just checked with American Eagle .40cals has straight walls around the edge and an open "basket" type pocket for each bullet, so gluing them together would be easy, and the screen is built in.
    Last edited by second chance; 10-21-2017 at 09:18 AM.

  13. #13
    Boolit Master
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    It could probably be done Second Chance but attaching the trays to a screen, i'd think, would make it pretty floppy and difficult to control when flipping over. You could dump the coated bullets onto a screen, and then pick them out of the screen and place into individual holes in the white plastic trays. That would allow you to capture any excess powder paint. It really isn't a lot of paint to deal with but may give it a try to see what benefit there may be. Thanks for the idea and tip.

    BTW, the white plastic sorter trays come from Blazer Brass factory 9mm ammo that I find at several ranges in the trash cans. You might want to keep an eye out for some the next time you go to the range?

  14. #14
    Boolit Buddy
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    igolf, this tray I have from American Eagle is very sturdy and rigid. It has parallel sides that would glue together to form a sheet with a plus(+) shaped open basket under the bullets, so the you wouldn't even need the screen on that side. You could however place a screen over the top(bullet base side) and shake that way as well. I'm still gathering knowledge and supplies before I take the plunge, but I will definitely try your method. Next time your'e at the range check out some other bullet brands, this type box is more like most of the factory ones I've used.

  15. #15
    Boolit Master slim1836's Avatar
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    I may try a version of this method to set the boolits uniformly on the tray prior to powder coating using the gun. Might have to fill every other space and stagger the rows to get better spacing.

    Now I've got to get some old trays in 45 and 308 cal. Thanks for the idea.

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  16. #16
    Boolit Buddy
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    I failed to get a photo to upload, but this box of fifty .40cals was $12, if that tells you how old. Lol

  17. #17
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    Click image for larger version. 

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  18. #18
    Boolit Master OS OK's Avatar
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    Ya know, those casts alone look to be about 6 1/2 lbs. of Pb...then there's the weight of the fixture...

    Have you got any good stories about 'flipping' that over you want to share?
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  19. #19
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  20. #20
    Boolit Buddy
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    Good point OS OK, my idea probably wouldn't do as many per dump, but these trays are pretty sturdy. Sorry about the extra photos

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