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Thread: Most people ARE NOT baking PC long enough

  1. #41
    Boolit Buddy
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    Normally I cook mine at 400 (Oven setting. No thermometer. I'm sure it lies a little bit.) for 30 minutes (starting in a cold convection oven) and they come out great. HF red. (I'm not advocating for this powder. It's hard to work with but it's what I have on hand and I feel like I have to use it up. Figured I should disclose that detail, though.) Needed slightly harder boolits and didn't want to mess with my perfect record of being cheap by spending any money adding tin and/or antimony. (Using range scrap.) So I experimented a bit with heat treating. Found out I can get away with 450 for an hour, with no harm to the pc, before chucking the basket in a bucket of water. Also found I can wait at least five hours before sizing without losing any harness. (Sizing before, immediately after, or five hours after made no difference in hardness at 24 hours after dropping into the water.) Didn't experiment with any longer than five hours before sizing. Didn't really mean to do that experiment either but life happens. My three month journey into casting for the 9mm ended with groups of 10 making one ragged hole at 50'. (multiple targets....repeatable)

    Seems to be quite a bit of flexability when it comes to cooking the pc.

  2. #42
    Boolit Grand Master fredj338's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dragonheart View Post
    Only problem is what if you have an oven like this? Even when the air temp of the oven is 400 and has been there for 14 minutes the temperature of the bullets is still not 400 and I usually only fill 4 of the 5 racks.
    Attachment 229555
    No idea on an oven that size but I would think 400deg inside is 400deg inside, that or a toaster oven. The good thing about the larger oven, it wont decrease heat much when you put cold bullets into it like a smaller toaster/pizza type. Still, I have no issues with 300 at a pop in my conv pizza oven, 400deg @ 13-14m.
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  3. #43
    Boolit Buddy Petander's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr_Sheesh View Post
    The oven's air temperature isn't the boolit's temperature; I've thought of drilling a boolit and making it an interference fit over a thermistor probe, to get a better idea of boolit temperature. Could use a smaller boolit like a light 25 or 30 cal one, since we'd care about the outside temperature of the boolit, not the center of a .458" 350 grain boolit?

    The surface of the boolit aka "substrate"'s temperature's going to be THE critical thing to get good bonding, I'd imagine.
    I did all that for a few months. Two different ovens. Different readings everywhere, add an IR meter and the boolit surface reads higher than the air and/or boolit. Oven dial can be something completely different than a probe inside a bullet AND another probe inside the oven. PID has its own probes,again different.

    My real problem was contaminated alloy but it took a while to find out. So I went deep into baking details. Too deep.

    My solution was to buy a third oven,a big used household oven , ditch all the meters, preheat the oven to 400 (dial mark) and find the good baking time by trial and error. No more stress about baking,it's always the same. Good bullets.

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    Ovens are like barrels.
    Last edited by Petander; 11-01-2018 at 05:09 PM.

  4. #44
    Boolit Master Grmps's Avatar
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    Dragonheart If you cover the bottom of your oven (around the heat elements) with firebrick, once the oven reaches temp it will recover faster when the door is opened.

    Petander most oven dials are off, some up to 75F

    I wouldn't trust any oven without first testing the temperature setting to the actual temperature inside the oven.

    I always start with a preheated oven so the bake time will remain the same when I do multiple loads.

    I'm not saying that shorter bake times won't pass the smash test or shoot well, I'm saying that most PC manufacturers recommend longer bake times for the PC to come to a FULL cure.

    IF the PC doesn't react to the gunpowder you are using with the length of time you are baking I would assume you are OK.

    I started this thread because people were having concerns about the gunpowder "melting"/sticking to the PC'd boolits.

  5. #45
    Boolit Master
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    Grmps, thanks for the info, but I have no need to open the door, so tiles would only add to the dynamic load and require more time and energy to bring the items up to curing temp. I have two Hamilton Beach Countertop Convection Ovens I set up just for bullets 6 years ago; I made additional racks so each oven is capable of holding approximately 1200 bullets in a single cook. I have enough oven space that a single cook typically takes care of my needs; usually just set the timer and unload the oven whenever. All my ovens contain a ServiceMan's Oven Thermometer to assure accuracy, even my PID controlled oven.

    In addition I converted a 30" convection kitchen oven with a PID for powder coating other larger items. I am just finishing adding a pneumatic case feeder to "Ram Buster"; my project to remove case bulge from straight wall pistol case by pushing a cartridge case through a sizing die. I gave it a test run yesterday and bulge busted 400 9mm cases in a few minutes. Today I plan to dismantle the feeder and powder coat the parts, so the big oven is needed.

    On a couple of occasions I used the big oven to cook several thousand bullets on 4 of the possible 5 full size racks. It was apparent that even though my PID holds the air temperature of the oven at 400 degrees, within a couple of degrees, one could see the PC flow differed on the individual racks. 4 racks full of lead is a lot to heat up. Observing that has prompted me to order several K probes, which I plan to cast into some bullet for monitoring the substrate and know for sure when it reaches 400 degrees. In the past I have used an IR thermometer to check the surface temperature, but the idea of a probe set into a bullets seems to be a better solution.

    As far as worrying about gun powder reaction, a long while back when this issue was first mentioned I placed various completely cured PC bullets in my scrap powder container for several months and there was no reaction. My scrap powder has an accumulation of numerous types of gun powders dating back for many years. As far as I am concerned this is a non-issue, at least not for properly cured powder coating.

  6. #46
    Boolit Buddy Petander's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grmps View Post

    Petander most oven dials are off, some up to 75F

    I wouldn't trust any oven without first testing
    True. They also go up and down. I chose a middle of the road, I decided to trust the oven when I found myself observing six different temperatures, inside a bullet,outside a bullet (all different), upper shelf,lower shelf, where should the PID sensors be etc... My big oven also has another fan for temp control, swings less than my other two.

    I preheat my bullets to 50C, that's where they are drying.

    I have done some 400 bakes in six months now. Three ovens. Had to get back to KISS.

  7. #47
    Boolit Buddy
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    I was wondering about time too. Several months ago I posted the question of how long is needed. I started over a year ago and the directions I was following said forty five minutes. So that’s what I did in small oven set on max 200*C (450*F) in a cold oven. It worked great. With time, I saw a lot of people doing it a lot shorter. So I posted the question, how long is needed. Most said a lot less time.

    What does Smokes say?

  8. #48
    Boolit Master
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    I think I might have just had my first ever under cooked event this weekend. No issues ever w powdercoat bullets but my 450 bushmaster I did I think. I’m going to try cleaning w acetone and a cyclone brush and report back. Remington 40x cleaner didn’t get it all and Lewis lead remover didn’t bring about lead shavings so I’m assuming it’s plastic

  9. #49
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by odfairfaxsub View Post
    I think I might have just had my first ever under cooked event this weekend. No issues ever w powdercoat bullets but my 450 bushmaster I did I think. I’m going to try cleaning w acetone and a cyclone brush and report back. Remington 40x cleaner didn’t get it all and Lewis lead remover didn’t bring about lead shavings so I’m assuming it’s plastic
    Instead of acetone I would suggest methyl ethyl ketone (MEK).

  10. #50
    Boolit Master Grmps's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Petander View Post
    True. They also go up and down. I chose a middle of the road, I decided to trust the oven when I found myself observing six different temperatures, inside a bullet,outside a bullet (all different), upper shelf,lower shelf, where should the PID sensors be etc... My big oven also has another fan for temp control, swings less than my other two.

    I preheat my bullets to 50C, that's where they are drying.

    I have done some 400 bakes in six months now. Three ovens. Had to get back to KISS.

    Another important thing to remember, the countertop oven's thermometer is affected by the temperature of the area it's in because of little or no insulation.
    IF the surrounding temperature goes up or down, you need to re-check your oven temp setting.


    odfairfaxsub try wrapping some "threads" of a brass scrub pad around your bore brush. This really speeds up cleaning time

  11. #51
    Boolit Master
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    I forgot to mention I tried the copper chore boy. It removed half of what I was dealing w but not the rest.

    Grmps I’ll try MEK. I’ll read up on how to use that stuff safely. I’ve been able to stay away from that chemical fortunately for many years. Gotta dust up on safety now.

  12. #52
    Boolit Master Grmps's Avatar
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    They use this to remove HiTek residue, it may work on PC. I do not know.

    Hi,
    To remove the coating from metal surfaces you need to get a product called N-Methyl Pyrrolidone.
    It is a very safe solvent water soluble.
    IMPORTANT.
    This material needs to be applied to dry surfaces. (No moisture as it deactivates solvency)
    Do not contaminate plastics or synthetic surfaces as this solvent will damage them.
    However, despite its ability to dissolve most materials, (sometimes slowly) in is safe to use.
    Use it neat, without any other solvents or diluents.
    Just wet a soft cotton rag or something like that, (not Acrylic or synthetic cloth) with N-Pyrrole, and pull it through the barrel to wet any coating residue.
    You can externally warm barrel with a hair drier which will increase solvents activity.
    Leave for a while, and, do another pull through with same solvent (N-Pyrrole) wet rag. Warming barrel will enhance the removal of residues.
    This solvent is slow acting and activity increases with warming.
    It will liquify resin bonded to metal, without doing any damage.
    When all residue is dissolved, simply rinse balance out with water or wet rag washes.
    Then, reapply some sort of WD40 type of spray inside the barrel to protect the steel.
    It seems to me that you did not cure the coating, as the deposits are a typical result of heat curing of coating by hot barrel which then bonded to inside barrel.
    This result, although unwanted, really demonstrates how tenaciously the coating will bond when heated to curing stage, and, how resistant it is to heat and abrasion after heat cure.

  13. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by GregLaROCHE View Post
    I was wondering about time too. Several months ago I posted the question of how long is needed. I started over a year ago and the directions I was following said forty five minutes. So that’s what I did in small oven set on max 200*C (450*F) in a cold oven. It worked great. With time, I saw a lot of people doing it a lot shorter. So I posted the question, how long is needed. Most said a lot less time.

    What does Smokes say?
    I use 15 minutes at 400 in a preheated oven
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  14. #54
    Boolit Master
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    Bought my acetone (I’ll look into buying N-Methyl Pyrrolidone) I’ll be busy a bit tonight. I do use a thermometer in the oven when baking. I am still perplexed on how my coat must have been under cooked. A first for me. I don’t buy into the low heat cures for 5 mins. I have had super luck w coatings in so many diff scenarios aka plain based 50 beo w reloader 7, plain based 45-70 over 4198, gas checked 30 cal over 4895 at 2k fps, top data 9mm plain based, I could go on. First failure I experienced. Most cleaning only requires two patches of oil (one to clean, other to straight lube)

  15. #55
    Boolit Master
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    Removed about 80 percent of it. The rest should come out w 5 rounds of Hornady black box.

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