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Thread: Lee bulge buster catch can fix

  1. #1
    Boolit Mold
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    Jul 2018
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    Lee bulge buster catch can fix

    Im not sure if this issue has been covered before but I thought I’d put my experience out there on the off chance it will help anyone else. I recently picked up a lee single stage press, brass bulge buster kit and other things to reload a bucket or two of .40 brass I’ve got. I put the bulge buster together and started working brass through it and found after a few cases that they would lean at odd angles inside the plastic tube portion of the catch can on top, bind and lift the entire catch can off the die and it would either fall to the floor or I’d try to catch it and spill brass all over anyway. I tried putting a small piece of tape on the upper outside lip of the die and it didn’t work well, next I tried some very thin cardboard spiral wrapped inside the catch can tube and that didn’t work well either. I went out to the shed and found a length of left over 1/2” pvc electrical conduit and it fit inside the tube like a glove. I cut a piece that would sit flush inside the catch can tube and tapped it in and I have no more problems with the catch can being lifted by angled brass and I was able to completely fill the can several times without issue. This is my fix, hopefully it might help someone else out in the future.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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  2. #2
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    Nice first post. Welcome to the forum!

    Fred
    After a shooting spree, they always want to take the guns away from the people who didn't do it. - William S. Burroughs.

  3. #3
    Boolit Master Grmps's Avatar
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    Davidius - welcome to CB. If you decided to start casting to save money, forget it. You won't, you'll just shoot more.

    Nice first post. You'll fit right in. were all about sharing what we find and what we've learned on this forum.
    A couple of things that should help you get going.

    Casting boolits (lead bullets) properly is a science, once you know the basics, not a hard science.
    There is a lot of good information on CB. The Google search (top right of every forum page) is a gateway to all the knowledge on this forum. IF you can’t find your answer there ask the question (Please be as detailed as possible, pictures help http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...g-screen-shots I would be very surprised if there wasn’t someone on this forum that could answer ANY (firearm related) question you might have)
    http://www.lasc.us/Fryxell_Book_Contents.htm
    1. Boolits need to be cast .0005 to .003 (normally .002) over the slugged diameter of your barrel for accuracy and to avoid leading. If the fit is wrong nothing else will work right.
    a. slugging a barrel (it is safer to use a brass rod or a steel rod with a couple of coats of tape to avoid damaging your barrel http://7.62x54r.net/MosinID/MosinSlug.htm
    b. chamber casting https://www.brownells.com/guntech/ce....htm?lid=10614
    or pound casting http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...rifle-chamber)
    2. the right alloy needs to be used for the velocity and purpose of the boolit (don’t fall into the trap of going with too hard an alloy
    Economical way to easily test lead hardness
    http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...rdness-testing

    Some alloys harden over time
    http://www.lasc.us/Fryxell_Book_Chap...Metallurgy.htm
    different alloy’s different end sizes

    Lead alloy calculator
    http://castboolits.gunloads.com/atta...4&d=1341560870
    3. velocity the bullet needs to be pushed hard/fast enough to get the proper spin, have the proper velocity to accurately reach the target but not so hard as to be dangerous or strip the lead off in the grooves instead of spinning the boolit..
    The boolit needs to be the right weight for the riffling/twist rate of your barrel
    Powders range from fast to slow, you need to choose the right powder for your barrel length & application.
    Loading manuals list the best powders for certain calibers and boolit weights.
    NEVER use any posted noncommercial load data without first checking commercial load data to see if falls in the safe parameter for your firearm!! There are several firearms out there that can handle much higher pressures than others!!
    Link to free online load data
    http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...online-sources

  4. #4
    Boolit Master
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    I've had the same issue. Thanks for the fix.

    Ron

  5. #5
    Boolit Bub

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    A very handy solution. Similar problem but with bullet sizing on a Lee press, my solution was mount the press on under the bench surface, not the top. My press was attached to a knot-free piece of 2 X 4 using C-clamps to hold it on the bench top. I unclamped the press, placed it upside down under the bench top, reinstalled the C-clamps. Now I place the bullet nose down in the sizing die, pull up on the handle, sized bullet drops into empty margarine tub. Production rate went up 50%.

  6. #6
    Boolit Master


    Walter Laich's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Engineer1911 View Post
    A very handy solution. Similar problem but with bullet sizing on a Lee press, my solution was mount the press on under the bench surface, not the top. My press was attached to a knot-free piece of 2 X 4 using C-clamps to hold it on the bench top. I unclamped the press, placed it upside down under the bench top, reinstalled the C-clamps. Now I place the bullet nose down in the sizing die, pull up on the handle, sized bullet drops into empty margarine tub. Production rate went up 50%.
    did the same thing

    takes all of less than 5 minutes to get used to moving handle in opposite direction to work
    NRA Life
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  7. #7
    Boolit Mold
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    Thank you for the welcome and the information. I’ve been sizing more brass and I got a little tired of emptying out the can so I came up with this, two left over 1/2” pvc electrical conduit 90 degree elbows stuck together. Goes from the press to a box with an old shirt in the bottom for padding. Works pretty well, no issues yet. I may cut the bell off the free hanging end and turn it around just in case a piece of brass tries to catch on the lip of the outgoing pipe. Click image for larger version. 

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  8. #8
    Boolit Mold
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    Upon further review... the red plastic catch can is no longer needed when using the two conduit fittings. The bell end fits over the die perfectly and cycles normally. Click image for larger version. 

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  9. #9
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    Smoke4320's Avatar
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    Wow Davidius .. Simple, cheap and should work well .. Thanks for sharing
    I carry a Nuke50 because cleaning up the mess is Silly !!

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  10. #10
    Boolit Master

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    Is this a great site or what! james

  11. #11
    Boolit Master

    Omega's Avatar
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    Looks like it should also work for the Lee sizers too; or would the lead bullet weight pop the pvc off The container?
    "Freedom is the sure possession of those alone who have the courage to defend it."
    ~Pericles~

  12. #12
    Boolit Master






    Lloyd Smale's Avatar
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    made a mount to mount a cheap lee c press upside down on my bench with a piece of clear rubber hose that fit the die perfectly that feeds down into a coffee can. I use it with lee bullet sizing dies and it works great. Probably would work just as well with a bulge buster but you might need a slightly stronger press with a bit more leverage.
    Soldier of God, sixgun junky, Retired electrical lineman. My office was a 100 feet in the air, closer to God the better

  13. #13
    Boolit Master Bayou52's Avatar
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    Good ideas, Guys. Thanks!

    I use the Lee BB for 45 cap. Fortunately, with that caliber, the brass flows freely into the red hopper with no issues.

    Bayou52
    Bayou52
    NRA Life Member


  14. #14
    Boolit Mold
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    Quote Originally Posted by Omega View Post
    Looks like it should also work for the Lee sizers too; or would the lead bullet weight pop the pvc off The container?
    I made a few handfuls of boolits from two lee molds today and used the pvc fittings in place of the catch can and it worked just fine. I did stick another fitting on the outgoing end, put a 45 degree elbow on just to slow them down as they were coming out. Worked well.

  15. #15
    Boolit Master

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    Davidius,

    Outstanding thread. Discovered the problem a couple days ago when I took my first crack at sending .40's through. Thanks much for posting!
    More "This is what happened when I,,,,," and less "What would happen if I,,,,"


    Noli sinere nothos te opprimere

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