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Thread: How much should I use?

  1. #1
    Boolit Buddy
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    How much should I use?

    I usually leave my 20lb pot mostly full when not in use. Doesn't seem to take long to remelt and I figure it helps prevent rust inside the pot. So it has maybe 17lbs or so of basic range scrap alloy in it currently. I've been casting pistol bullets from it. I want to do some 225 bullets to load for 223 now. Thinking of casting pistol bullets to get the pot down to maybe 14-15 lbs of lead. Then adding different alloy to try and harden whats in there some. I have COWW ingots, roughly 1lb each. Also have seveal bags of nuggets from Rotometals, both Hardball and Superhard. These nuggets seem to be around a couple oz each in weight. If I dropped in maybe 2-3 of the superhard nuggets, approx 30% antimony each, would that be about right to work with the amount of lead currently in the pot? I didn't think adding a couple lbs of COWW or a handful of hardball nuggets would add more than a fraction of a percent.

    Tried to play around witb that alloy calculator on here. Doesn't work well on my phone for some reason. Can't add any values.
    Last edited by Namerifrats; 11-15-2018 at 02:20 PM.

  2. #2
    Boolit Grand Master

    454PB's Avatar
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    Your numbers are kind of rough, but it sounds like adding 3 "nuggets" should bring it up a few percent. I suggest adding a little tin as well, those small .225 boolits are going to need it.
    You cannot discover new oceans unless you have the courage to lose sight of the shore

  3. #3
    Boolit Buddy
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    I already have some tin in the mix. I scrounged a lot of pewter over the last couple months. I smelted them into small ingots a couple oz each. I have around 25lbs of them. Usually add a couple to a pot when it gets low and I add more lead. Casting 30 or so of the 225 bullets with the current batch in the pot, filled out perfectly. I just think the curre t batch in the pot might be too soft for a 223. Not planning to load them hot or fast. Just something to play with at the range. They are gas checked as well. I would just rather avoid leading in that small diameter barrel. Size is fine based on my bore casting and what the current test bullets dropped at.

  4. #4
    Boolit Master

    Rcmaveric's Avatar
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    If you have the fit right then it might surprise you how soft you can go. Try a half Range scraps and half wheel weight. You can water drop from the mold if you wanted harder. I like a BHN of 10 to 12 in rifles and around 8 to 10 BHN for pistols.

    Havent Chroned my Grendel but the 30-30 is at 1800 fps and my 270 is about 2000 fps with that mix. Let the gun talk to and tell you what it wants to eat. Dont be afraid of some leading, it is easy to clean out witha but Chore Boy. You have lived until you cleaned leading out so bad you coudnt see the grooves. Honestly though, with a good lube you wont lead.
    Last edited by Rcmaveric; 11-15-2018 at 03:16 PM.
    "Speak softly and carry a big stick; you will go far."
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  5. #5
    Boolit Buddy
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    I get away with range scrap + 1% tin. I'm powder coating. Have to heat treat mine or the brass swages them down a little too much.

    Sent from my XT1710-02 using Tapatalk

  6. #6
    Boolit Buddy
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    I will try a few of the test bullets I made from the current batch. For lubes, I use White Label Lube's Carnauba blue and Carnauba red. As far as water quenching, I do that to all bullets regardless.

  7. #7
    Boolit Master

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    Try some water dropped bullets and some aircool and heat treated to see what is more accurate. You never know your gun might like the softer stuff. Good lubes so you wont lead.

    Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk
    "Speak softly and carry a big stick; you will go far."
    ~Theodore Roosevelt~

  8. #8
    Boolit Master RogerDat's Avatar
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    Alloy calculator on a phone doesn't work. Interesting. It is an Excel spreadsheet you should be able to run it on a computer with Open Office Calc program which is free and available for Windows, Mac, and Linux. Or of course MS Excel. Not to surprised it doesn't work on a phone. Downloaded files on a phone that can contain macros might well be locked down to prevent an exploit using a macro. Executable in effect and not coming from an official "store" but just off the web, yeah that is probably not going to work out of the box.
    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.
    Feedback page http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...light=RogerDat I do trade a bit from time to time.

  9. #9
    Boolit Buddy Land Owner's Avatar
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    From your description, a pinch here and there, you have no clue what composition is in your pot at present...that presents a fundamental problem in multiple variables.

    You can make assumptions and work from there...but not on a phone. Do it the Old Fashioned way - use a pencil and paper. The calcs can be done on the phone if you choose.

    "...do some 225 bullets..." does that mean a total number of rounds or the diameter of the cast boolet?

    Maybe 17 lbs in your pot now to cast down to maybe 14 or 15 lbs. Is your pot calibrated like that?

    You wish to add a different alloy to harden the remainder "some". Use the "pencil test" that is described in the Stickies to determine the hardness currently. Water drop a few and retest for hardness. Hard enough? No? Add some rotometal. That might be your fastest and cheapest way of empirically hardening the already unknown mix.

    Or you could do the MATH (old school and long hand converting everything to grains, ounces, or pounds, but everything has to be in the same units) and determine, based upon your assumptions of variables (30% antimony means nothing), how adding "X" pounds of WW's (hardness determined by pencil test) and/or "Y" ounces of hardball and/or super hardball (hardness determined by pencil test) is going to increase the percentage of exiting hardness in your pot (determined by pencil test).

    some constants for your consideration
    1 ounce equals 437.5 grains
    1 pound equals 7000 grains

    [LATE NOTE] Constant for ounces changed (to International Units for non-precious metals) as pointed out to me by 6mm win lee.
    Last edited by Land Owner; 11-26-2018 at 05:25 AM.
    If it was easy, anybody could do it.

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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