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Thread: 405 gr.hollow base

  1. #1
    Boolit Master

    Knarley's Avatar
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    405 gr.hollow base

    Just picked up a LEE 450gr hollow base mould. Going to be shooting out of a Trap door with Black. Is it suggested to use a wad underneath or shoot it without? 20:1 alloy
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  2. #2
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Knarley View Post
    Just picked up a LEE 450gr hollow base mould. Going to be shooting out of a Trap door with Black. Is it suggested to use a wad underneath or shoot it without? 20:1 alloy
    Thats a good blackpowder mold - nice big lube grooves - I have two of em I modified for my 1876 uberti 45/75 - took the dimple off the base plug to make it a flat base and then shaved a bit off the top face in the mill so the meplat was a safer size (pre doing that the boolit nose would fit inside the primer pocket - I dont like that idea for this big magazine rifle) - so both those mods and it came back right at 405 grains - I reckon if you wanna shoot wads under the boolit the flat base would work better and proly add about ten/fifteen grains weight. LEE will sell ya the bottom plate and base plug assembly outa spare parts quite cheap so ya dont need to worry about stuffing up yr mold.

  3. #3
    Boolit Master



    curator's Avatar
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    I regularly use a 1/8" card wad (.460) under the Lee .459-405HB boolit with excellent results in my various .45-70 rifles. The small hollow base is actually designed to put the center of gravity slightly forward and has zero expanding capability as would a "minie"-type boolit. This boolit has wide and deep grooves and holds a lot of lube for black powder shooting. I also paper=patch it and shoot in my martini-henry rifles too. Yes, I lube it before paper patching, contrary to common wisdom. This boolit also shoots great in the Danish rolling block 11.7X51R when shoot as cast, usually .462-.463.

  4. #4
    Boolit Mold
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    When you shoot your 405 bullets with a paper patch in your Martini, do you get thin strips pf paper on the ground or the whole patch. If I asked this before forgive me computer issues.

  5. #5
    Boolit Master Big Mak's Avatar
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    I would love it if someone could link or publish data on flat bottom vs hollow-based bullets in a controlled environment, all things equal except the bullet.
    This is the kind of stuff I study before jumping to the next level.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Big Mak View Post
    I would love it if someone could link or publish data on flat bottom vs hollow-based bullets in a controlled environment, all things equal except the bullet.
    This is the kind of stuff I study before jumping to the next level.
    The hollow base on the LEE boolit is not anywhere near enough to expand to fill rifling like a minie - its puzzled me why they designed it the way they did - somebody here recently said so the centre of gravity shifted forward a bit ? maybe ? I like the boolit because of the lube grooves for blackpowder - its what I use in my 76 uberti
    Click image for larger version. 

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ID:	219285 with a couple modifications as in the picture - I made it flatbase and milled the top face to widen the flat nose. I did shoot it as original at the start but the rifle was new and its a couple years back - cant make a useful comparison. The mods I did to that mold by coincidence got it right on 405 grains - I also altered another of those molds by making a longer base plug that took off the bottom driving band and lube groove and casts a flat base 335 grain . Both shoot ok, I think my rifle prefers the 405 g - If I try hard I can get five in about two inches at 100 yards (sometimes!) Thats more my limit than the gun or the ammo.
    Last edited by indian joe; 04-25-2018 at 10:47 PM.

  7. #7
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by curator View Post
    This boolit also shoots great in the Danish rolling block 11.7X51R when shoot as cast, usually .462-.463.
    I use it in my Danish Remington as well, but it only casts .459/.460 for me.
    I pushed a bullit through from the breech to the muzzle, and it never fully engraved, so I know it's undersize. Will probably order a different mould later, but this is good for the time being.

  8. #8
    Boolit Master Grapeshot's Avatar
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    .405 Hollow Based Boolit

    Quote Originally Posted by Knarley View Post
    Just picked up a LEE 450gr hollow base mould. Going to be shooting out of a Trap door with Black. Is it suggested to use a wad underneath or shoot it without? 20:1 alloy
    Ok. What will be your powder charge? If you are shooting the .45/70 TD Rifle and using a charge of 65 to 70 grains of BR, Do Not Use wads. They will lodge in your cavity and through the balance of your boolit off. Likewise for the carbine. If you are using the 55 grain load, seat that hollow based slug right on the powder. No Wads. (Ref: Spence Wolf's "Reloading .45/70 cartridges for the Original Trapdoor Rifles and Carbines".)
    Listen! Do you hear it. The roar of cannons, the screams of the dying! Ahh! Music to my ears!

  9. #9
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    Good morning Indian Joe
    Thank you for posting the modified Lee. I like that !
    Mike in Peru
    "Come unto Me, all you who labor and are heavy burdened, and I will give you rest." Matthew 11:28
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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