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Thread: Pan Lubing Is For The Dang Birds!!!!

  1. #1

    Pan Lubing Is For The Dang Birds!!!!

    Harumpfffff!!!!!

    I just had - shall we say - a 'negative experience' with pan lubing. It's a messy proposition at the best of times but today I spilled a pan of that stuff all over the place!!! After I finished chimping out in rage, I cleaned it up and swore to my wife and my Maker that I am never doing this again! SCREW IT!!!

    So I go on the innernet to by an RCBS or Lyman lube sizer... and I can't find one of these things in Canada! Any of you Canadian fellas have any suggestions? I want a press and the dies to size my Postell bullets to .459 (my molds throw them to that size anyway) - I am more interested in cleaner lubing more than anything else.

    If you fellas know anyone in Alberta selling these things - please be a sport and let me know...?

  2. #2
    Boolit Master pietro's Avatar
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    .

    Pan lubing can be successful if a few things are done.

    I use a somewhat denser lube, put the boolits into the pan/melted lube, then let the lube harden before removing the boolits.

    I remove the boolits (with their filled grooves) from the pan/lube by using a cartridge case that's had it's rear 1/2" cut off. (I use a .458 Win Mag case for .45's)

    I press the case mouth down over a few boolits (until the larger case body is filled with lubed boolits), then poke the boolits out of the case with a dowel through the case mouth, onto some paper, repeating as req'd before storing or loading the boolits.

    An avoidable accident is IMO not a reason for abandoning what's tried & true - unless you have the need for speed......


    .
    Experience is a wonderful thing - It lets you recognize a mistake, when you make it again.

  3. #3
    Boolit Bub
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    I've been there and done that, now have an old Lyman and fill the hopper with my favorite beeswax mix lube, so far so good just have to warm the body a bit if it's cold.

    They are on Amazon.ca; otherwise I'm afraid I don't know where to get one in Canada off the top pf my head, but other than the pain of the exchange rate getting them across the border is not an issue. I buy plenty of reloading equipment online from the USA (Titan Reloading, Lee and Lyman).

  4. #4
    Boolit Master
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    I pan lube some & also tumble lube a lot. The tumble lube is certainly easier than using the pan lube. Maybe you could try TLing some of them & see how that works.

    Then after your frustration level drops, maybe give pan lubing a try again.

    Of course you can always go buy a lube sizer as well, but just because ya stumbled a bit on your first steps in pan lubing, I would suggest ya try it again before just giving up.


    Or... You could always jump into the Powder Coating movement...
    {I tried that PC-ing once & got frustrated so I put it away to try another time... Just like you with the pan lubing technique. I will give it a try again here this Summer. So, Basically I will taking my own advice to try it again.. LOL . }

    G'Luck! whatever ya decide.
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  5. #5
    Boolit Master
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    Check out the shop in Edmonton or just order from the USA.

  6. #6
    Boolit Bub
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    Quote Originally Posted by JBinMN View Post
    I pan lube some & also tumble lube a lot. The tumble lube is certainly easier than using the pan lube. Maybe you could try TLing some of them & see how that works.

    Then after your frustration level drops, maybe give pan lubing a try again.

    Of course you can always go buy a lube sizer as well, but just because ya stumbled a bit on your first steps in pan lubing, I would suggest ya try it again before just giving up.


    Or... You could always jump into the Powder Coating movement...
    {I tried that PC-ing once & got frustrated so I put it away to try another time... Just like you with the pan lubing technique. I will give it a try again here this Summer. So, Basically I will taking my own advice to try it again.. LOL . }

    G'Luck! whatever ya decide.
    This is very true; and I should add that I pan lubed a ton before getting the sizer, and also still do for calibers I don't have the Lyman sizing dies for.

    It sure does create a mess though when that pan starts tipping! The look on my wife's face... I had to set up out in the shop after that. Man that stuff flows EVERYWHERE and after it hardens...

  7. #7
    Boolit Buddy


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    That's why they sometimes call it "pain lubing". I wouldn't pan lube another boolit if it harelipped Santa Claus.
    So many guns, so little time
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  8. #8
    Boolit Buddy MOA's Avatar
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    Click image for larger version. 

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    Here is some wonder lube for muzzle loaders pan lubing my 50 cal plains boolits for my Swede roller befor loading into my cut down 50 Alaskan cases loaded with 55 grains of RS Select over a hard card. Easy-peaze.

  9. #9
    Boolit Buddy
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    I haven't done a lot of pan lubing, but enough to know that it is messy even if you don't tip the pan over. My heat source is my gas grill, fire it up, close the lid and put the lube pan on top (away from any flames), usually melts pretty quick. Remove it and let it cool. After it cools it goes in the freezer and once frozen the bullets are pushed out pretty easily. Still a sticky mess but the best way I found.

  10. #10
    Boolit Buddy

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    I pan lubed when I was too poor to buy a lube sizer - but yes! The tool is so much more convenient. Good luck in your quest to locate one.

  11. #11
    Boolit Mold
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    I have had splendid luck pan lubing, and I never use any type of cake cutter or tool to remove the bullets from the lube. Here is my system and I hope it works for you.
    I use NASA black powder lube from Bullshop, a banned former member. It is the best b.p. lube I have ever used, and I have tried several commercial brands and a bunch of home made formulas. Next, I only heat my lube over boiling water in a double boiler, never direct flame to a pan bottom. I stand 100 bullets in a black plastic Deli tray with tapered sides. I leave a couple bullets out of the very center to allow a spot to pour the melted lube in. If my bullets are cool from being stored in cool/cold weather, I warm them up first, a hair drier or heat gun quickly does that while the lube is melting. I pour the lube in the bullet filled tray. When the lube is all the way to the upper grease groove, you will see it has a meniscus forming from surface tension. I stop pouring and gently tap the edge of the tray with my finger tip and the lube will flow into the last groove of all of the bullet. It is important the the pan be dead nuts level. After that I simply wait for the lube to cool completely, and then gently dump the cake of lube full of bullets out of the pan and using my thumb, push on the noses and shove them back end first out of the solidified cake. The lube groove are full, the bases clean, the noses are clean. What's not to like?
    Duke

  12. #12
    Boolit Master

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    I did a little panlubing in the beginning but found it very slow especially for handgun boolits , and after my wife saw the mess I was creating in the kitchen + the cussing . She told me to get what I needed so I did , I briefly tried powder coating also but I have a condition ( clumsily 10 thumb syndrome ) needless to say I love my lube sizer . I still dip lube some cast boolits for testing rifle rounds , and it reminds me how much I love my lube sizer .

  13. #13
    Boolit Buddy
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    I have found that I like dipping my .45-70 and T/C .50 and .54 Max Balls better than pan lubing and it's not as much mess. I use Ranch Dog's method just fine and I'm a bit of a klutz myself. For smokeless I use 45-45-10 and for BP I use either Lyman Black Powder Gold or my own beeswax and olive oil mix. GF

  14. #14
    Boolit Master RogerDat's Avatar
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    Tumble lube works and if you want to push it (or enjoy the smell of burning Alox based lubes) then dip and place in plastic bullet tray from box of bullets to dry/drain. Then through Lee sizer. Nice thick band of lube in each groove. Or for pistol just dump in a zip lock with a squirt of the 45/45/10 alox type mix, shake and dump on tray to dry. Really going to push things then one can't beat PC even inexpensive shake-n-bake.

    Have to admit never really saw much point in pursuing pan lube beyond an early trial since the other approaches mentioned above covered my needs with less muss and less fuss. Lube sizer for me would be another piece of equipment and more consumables to purchase and have on hand without expanding my output in any significant way. But then lube sizers have a good strong following so I will allow there might be a reason for that following.
    Je suis Charlie
    Scrap.... because all the really pithy and emphatic four letter words were taken and we had to describe this way of getting casting material somehow.
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  15. #15
    Boolit Buddy
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    I pan lubed until I found 2 RCBS' Lam's and I rather enjoyed it. I'm a tinkerer and I had rather pan lube than to change the lube in the RCBS. I hate changing lube so I keep one Lam set for 45's and one set for 357 which is the ones I use most. It also helps to have a designated area in a shop so screw ups are not such a calamity.
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  16. #16
    Boolit Buddy
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    Pan lubing can be a chore. I use to pan lube minnie balls in the toaster oven and when cool enough put them in the freezer. My wife thought I was nuts but once I had a routine down it was a pretty slick operation. I also agree that its hard to beat a Lyman lube sizer for speed and ease.
    Iv'e had both the Lyman and the RCBS and the Lyman is easier to use and refill. To find a lube sizer try Cabela's or Graf & sons.

  17. #17
    Boolit Buddy
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    I think the lube has a lot to do with success.....my mix of waxes and oils is good in a lub/sizer,consistency like a soft putty,but melt the stuff and it sets as a hard wax,and doesnt stick until its worked again,when its very sticky.......no good at all for pan lubing.

  18. #18
    Boolit Master
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    I mostly use my RCBS lubrisizer to hang rags on . I have only kept it as I might revisit it one day.

    Buffalo Arms stocks them and will send them to Canada.

    Chris.

  19. #19
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    Minerat's Avatar
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    My heat source is a high temp heat gun. Just sit the bullets in the pan, add a chunk of lube, give it the heat. When the lube melts to an even level I go inside and let it cool. Next time put bullets in holes from first batch, add lube if needed and melt lube again with heat gun. No fuss no muss.

  20. #20
    Boolit Master

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    I pan lube all my bpcr bullets. I use a double boiler type set up a 11x14 x3 cake pan a 9x 12 brownie pan in side it. The second pan set up on 2 lengths of 3/4 x 3/4 angle so its got water under it and all around. I have pans for the various calibers I shoot. I set the bullets up right and melt the lube into them adding whats needed as it melts (SPG or emmerts improved). This I let cool and remove pan setting it on a towel. Once completely cooled I cut the bullets out using a cake cutter. Mine are made from .015 wall brass hobby tubing sized down to the Id I want. One trick is once you have the lube in the pan and first batch out leave it in the pan and set bullets in the exisiting openings. This holds the bullets upright and gives the correct spacing every time.

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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