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Thread: Ordered my first mold

  1. #1
    Boolit Man wendyj's Avatar
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    Ordered my first mold

    Went for a cheap Lee 252 mold 2 cavity. Thought I'd try and ladle a few rounds out of a pot on turkey fryer and see if I'm any good before buying pot and sizers. I can always do that later. Only got 2 lbs of lead to start with. I hope it's something I enjoy. Watching videos and reading it looks like it would be relaxing and my gun range is shut down for 2 months to extend distance.

  2. #2
    Boolit Master
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    It's a good starting point.

    I liked using my bottom pour pot with a lee 6 banger when i started, it did the job quite quickly, it wasn't unpleasant.

    Years later, gear has changed to an automated master caster so i can focus on other things while it's making pistol food

  3. #3
    Boolit Master

    Wayne Smith's Avatar
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    Wendy I started with an old kitchen 1qt pot and a Lyman Ladle on a Coleman camp stove. Stove is different but the pot is still filled with pure lead - and I'm still using the Lyman ladle almost 20 years later. Not in a hurry and I enjoy the process of ladle casting.
    Wayne the Shrink

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  4. #4
    Boolit Man wendyj's Avatar
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    I'm going to do the same with exception of a ss dipper I bought and will drill a hole in it. I am not in a hurry either. I do want to see if I enjoy it which I think I will.

  5. #5
    Boolit Master
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    You would do well to use welding gloves. A small pot over a turkey fryer is gonna be REAL HOT. You might also be better served by getting a GOOD dipper. The right dipper GOES A LONG WAY in casting decent bullets. If you're going to dipper cast don't handicap yourself by trying it with an inferior tool. I'VE TRIED IT, IT'S NOT WORTH THE FRUSTRATION. THE LEE dipper may work for round ball. But nothing else. You can still cast a great .45cal 535gr POSTELL out of a single cavity mold with an RCBS or LYMAN dipper.
    Happiness is a Warm GUN & more ammo to shoot in it.

  6. #6
    Boolit Master
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    Walks has it right. You need a decent dipper to successfully cast. I started with a single cavity Lyman, Lyman cast iron pot on a Coleman stove, had the LYMAN dipper, no Lee bullet molds in 1964. A LYMAN or RCBS lead dipper is a decent place to start. That Lee lead spoon will not help you.There are other lead dippers but the Lyman or RCBS have the boolit caster in mind.

  7. #7
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    JonB_in_Glencoe's Avatar
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    I hope you don't get discouraged easily.

    When I first started casting, before I ordered a Lee bottom pour pot, I tried to cast a few with a Lee ladle and a old used 45 cal 2 cavity Lee mold. I didn't have any success, but I was doing this while I was smelting scrap lead, and luckily for me, I did enjoy the smelting part enough to continue with casting.

    Then, when I bought the Lee bottom pour pot, it was like night and day with getting good looking boolits from the mold...a bottom pour makes it quite easy compared to what you are about to attempt. There are many other hints, tips, and tricks you will learn along the way to make things even more successful. But all I'm just saying is, if you don't have first time boolit casting success with a turkey fryer/pot and homemade ladle, you wouldn't be alone...You'd be part of a pretty large group.

  8. #8
    One important thing to help start on the right foot is to be sure you degrease the mold well before starting.

  9. #9
    Oops. Double tap.

    Lots of reading here will give you the best way to avoid common problems and the ability to troubleshoot any issues that do come up.

  10. #10
    Boolit Man wendyj's Avatar
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    Will gun blaster work. It's what I get grease off my ar with. Does that mean the cavities or entire mold. Read somewhere about cleaning with dish soap and toothbrush. Boiling afterwards and air dry but not sure. Lees instruction said to clean cavities with a Q Tip and any degreaser. Lubricating moving parts with candle wax.

  11. #11
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by wendyj View Post
    I'm going to do the same with exception of a ss dipper I bought and will drill a hole in it. I am not in a hurry either. I do want to see if I enjoy it which I think I will.
    That bottom pour drilled ladle is something that I give much credit for allowing me to produce good bullets from my first casting session. It allows great visibility; and the fixed hole / flow removes a variable when, as a beginner, one is learning to adjust too many as it is.

    I'd, only, suggest more alloy and less burner.
    The first purpose of the Second Amendment is too often overlooked, fostering a liberty of mind and action necessary in the people of a free republic.

  12. #12
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    NoZombies's Avatar
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    Brake cleaner is fine, carb cleaner isn't. I prefer hot water, dawn dish soap and a toothbrush. Make sure the mold is hot before you start pouring, otherwise you will see things that look like you're silver prunes into the mold.

    Don't use candle wax as a mold lube, it burns off and leaves a ton of carbon residue build up without doing a good job of lubing the mold, even at first. If you can find a small bottle of synthetic 2 stroke oil, that's what most of the commercial "mold lubes' actually are. It only takes a drop or two, I use a Q-tip. Once the mold is pre-heated, open it up, and use the Q-tip to apply a very light amount to the alignment pins and the sprue plate hinge (just touch them with the Q-tip that has a drop on it). Then cast a few times, after the second or third cast, strike the sprue off, and with the sprue plate open, but without dropping the bullets out, use the same Q-tip to lightly touch the top of the mold, I just use a line across the top on the block half that's nearest the open sprue plate, then you can drop the bullets. By leaving the bullets in the cavity, it prevents the oil from getting into the cavities, at least in theory.

    The mold should then be sufficiently lubed for many pours. If you feel the cavities becoming more difficult to close, or the sprue plate resistance increasing, re-lube. A drop of 2 stroke synthetic on a Q-tip should be enough to lube everything on the mold that needs lubed, anytime it needs it. Too much and it can migrate to the cavities, giving you a whole different set of frustrations.
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  13. #13
    Boolit Man wendyj's Avatar
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    I can use a Coleman stove verses the turkey fryer. I just pulled it out to melt the 30-30 bullets into ingots since I'm not shooting 30-30 anymore.

  14. #14
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by wendyj View Post
    I can use a Coleman stove verses the turkey fryer. I just pulled it out to melt the 30-30 bullets into ingots since I'm not shooting 30-30 anymore.
    That's a good idea, I think, for both safety and comfort.

    If you haven't seen it, this thread and its posts by NavyVet1959 are good on the drilled ladles:

    http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...tom-pour-ladle
    The first purpose of the Second Amendment is too often overlooked, fostering a liberty of mind and action necessary in the people of a free republic.

  15. #15
    Boolit Man wendyj's Avatar
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    I watched. Video with Fortune Cookie 45 and a dipper he had drilled a 3/32 inch hole in the bottom. Looked like he was liking it better than his dipper. Only $4.00 so not out too much.

  16. #16
    Boolit Master rsrocket1's Avatar
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    The right equipment makes a big difference as to whether you make casting fun or a chore. You can melt toy soldiers over a campfire and make musket balls like Mel Gibson did in The Patriot which is fine if you shoot no more than about 6 shots in an entire battle. Hand pouring pistol bullets 2 at a time with a modified spoon over a hot cauldron of lead is not going to be fun unless you truly want to cast just a few dozen bullets.

    My first batch was with a Lee 4-20 and a six cavity Lee TL452-230-TC and it was a real joy to see a bowl full of bullets after just a few minutes of casting.




    Once I shot them, I was hooked.


  17. #17
    Boolit Master



    BrassMagnet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wendyj View Post
    Went for a cheap Lee 252 mold 2 cavity. Thought I'd try and ladle a few rounds out of a pot on turkey fryer and see if I'm any good before buying pot and sizers. I can always do that later. Only got 2 lbs of lead to start with. I hope it's something I enjoy. Watching videos and reading it looks like it would be relaxing and my gun range is shut down for 2 months to extend distance.
    .252?
    .452?

  18. #18
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    JonB_in_Glencoe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BrassMagnet View Post
    .252?
    .452?
    I suspect he is talking about Lee's 45 cal 252gr SWC
    https://leeprecision.com/mold-dc-452-252-swc.html

    I have that mold, it's one that I like for 45 Colt, as well as 45acp Revolvers.

  19. #19
    Boolit Master



    BrassMagnet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JonB_in_Glencoe View Post
    I suspect he is talking about Lee's 45 cal 252gr SWC
    https://leeprecision.com/mold-dc-452-252-swc.html

    I have that mold, it's one that I like for 45 Colt, as well as 45acp Revolvers.
    I think you're right!

    Even I can be educated!

  20. #20
    Boolit Man wendyj's Avatar
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    .452 .252. My rifle shoots .452 best.

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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