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Thread: The hidden cost of Power Coating - your toaster oven

  1. #41
    Boolit Man
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    Quote Originally Posted by sureYnot View Post
    Exactly. And I'm thankful he did it. I can now be sure that my fraction of a penny rounding is covering that cost. Wonder if we can get him to see how much our ten and twenty pound pots are using per hour.....

    Sent from my XT1710-02 using Tapatalk
    I have a Lee 420, hopefully I can cast again this weekend and I'll update.

  2. #42
    Boolit Man
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lloyd Smale View Post
    yup I don't meter the cost of my modem being on all night or how much it cost me per hour to watch tv or build a wood fire to cook over to save electricity or take cold showers to save a few pennys. Ive probably got 3ok worth of loading and casting gear out in the barn and another 10k building the loading room section of the barn. If I factored all the money I have there and in powder primers lead gas checks brass ect I could probably have bought factory ammo and it would have been cheaper in the end. but what fun is that. PC is just a small part of my big picture. Theres advantages to it and if it cost twice as much to heat my oven id still do it.
    I measured just about everything I had plugged in back when I got the meter. Found out that I could replace my dehumidifier, it would pay for itself in short order, and I would save $250/yr. It did surprise me that it wasn't worth replacing an old fridge however.

  3. #43
    Boolit Grand Master






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    pretty easy to figure if you know your electric rate. You can either look at the wattage rating on your pot or more accurately use and ampmeter to measure amperage and multiply it by the voltage your using and it will give you the amount of watts your using. Your bill is based on kilowatt hours. that's a charge for how much a 1000 watt hours cost per hour. So if your pot draws a 1000 watts and you run it for an hour you used one kilowatt hour. that is if you pot runs constant. You also have to calculate how much of that hour its actually running. that will very some because it takes less to keep 5lbs hot then it does 10 but it will give you a rough idea. Our utility charges @10 cents a kilowatt hour so if my pot runs steady for one hour at a 1000 watts it costs me 10 cents to do it. factor in the pot is only probably on half the time and its closer to a nickel. But then I have a bad habbit of turning a pot on and letting it heat up and coming back in an hour or two to cast so that would have to be factored in too. Now you also have to factor in the flat rate meter charge of 15 dollars but spread over a month that's pretty minor.
    Last edited by Lloyd Smale; 01-17-2019 at 07:17 AM.
    Soldier of God, sixgun junky, Retired electrical lineman. My office was a 100 feet in the air, closer to God the better

  4. #44
    Boolit Grand Master






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    biggest draws in your home are water pumps, water heaters and anything with a compressor ie fridge freezer dehumidifier. theres also many things in your home today using power 24/7. Anything with a digital display and your modem, cable or dish box cordless battery tool battery chargers ect. When I was lineman I heard the complaining all the time. Old timers saying there power bills are much more even factoring in cost of living then they used to be. Ive walked a few around there homes and showed them the equipment like these examples that run all the time that didn't exist 20 years ago.
    Quote Originally Posted by weeple2000 View Post
    I measured just about everything I had plugged in back when I got the meter. Found out that I could replace my dehumidifier, it would pay for itself in short order, and I would save $250/yr. It did surprise me that it wasn't worth replacing an old fridge however.
    Soldier of God, sixgun junky, Retired electrical lineman. My office was a 100 feet in the air, closer to God the better

  5. #45
    Boolit Master GARD72977's Avatar
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    I wonder what the hidden cost of documenting everything is? If you worked a part time job for the same hours you have spent with spread sheets what would the difference be? Factor in paper, meters, pens and other supplies.

    I'm not trolling here just pointing out you are working and have to consider what your times worth?
    " If you cant do it with a 308 , you dont need to do it!

  6. #46
    Boolit Man
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    I figure I probably "save" somewhere around $10/hr, maybe, casting. Obviously there is an opportunity cost here - if I wasn't casting, would I be shooting as much? As I mentioned I work in analytics and I am a numbers person. I enjoy trying to see what all of this stuff costs. I like to put numbers on spreadsheets and keep track of things. I don't look at this as work, but an enjoyable hobby. For me it is a way to relieve stress. I have run the numbers, and therapy costs about $250/hr. So you can see I come out pretty far ahead on this one.

    If I worked a part time job instead making over $10/hr, I'd have a different problem. I'd have less time to spend on something I enjoy so much.

  7. #47
    Boolit Man
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    I spent a little over 2 hours casting boolits tonight. I used my energy monitor to see how much it cost to run my Lee 420 pot. I ran my pot about half empty as I feel like that gives me the best results. I continuously heat ingots on top and add to maintain the level. I also leave my pot half empty when I'm done. In order to melt the initial solid lead in the pot, it costs $0.087/hr. I assume the heating element is running nonstop for this. I checked the energy used throughout the whole session at the end. It cost $0.074/hr on average throughout the whole session.

    Because some of you will demand the details, I cast using two two cavity molds at the same time. They were the Lee 148 grain TL mold for 38 special, and the Lee 200 grain GC RN mold for 308. I cast about 130 of the 38 special boolits and 192 of the 308 boolits. It was a total 8.24 lbs. There were some culls but those were the ones I kept. I didn't count the culls but there might have been 40 if I had to guess.

  8. #48
    Boolit Master
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    If you used 4 cavity molds your production would double and cut the cost in half.

  9. #49
    Boolit Man
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    Not exactly, it would run the furnace more to melt more lead. I use 6 cavity molds for my high volume rounds. Unfortunate that Lee only does 2 cavity for rifle.

  10. #50
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by weeple2000 View Post
    Not exactly, it would run the furnace more to melt more lead. I use 6 cavity molds for my high volume rounds. Unfortunate that Lee only does 2 cavity for rifle.
    And if I melt more lead I get more bullets and the entire reason I am there in the first place. When I run two 4 cavity molds I am dropping 20 bullets a minute.

  11. #51
    Boolit Man
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    I think you are probably right, you'd run the furnace fewer hours for the same production. I was curious how much more efficient a 6 cavity is vs the 2. You'd be saving time opening the mold less often but not when it comes to filling. I'll have to look into that out of curiosity. I suspect it isn't three times as fast.

  12. #52
    Boolit Master
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    Factory ammo shoots shotgun patterns in my win trapper 357 ,my lead GC loads shoot little groups ,priceless.if you cost your time it probably costs more than factory ,who cares?we do it for pleasure and personal satisfaction.

  13. #53
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by weeple2000 View Post
    I think you are probably right, you'd run the furnace fewer hours for the same production. I was curious how much more efficient a 6 cavity is vs the 2. You'd be saving time opening the mold less often but not when it comes to filling. I'll have to look into that out of curiosity. I suspect it isn't three times as fast.
    It depends somewhat. I personally don't think there is any method faster than running two 4 cavity iron molds like the H&G or old Saeco molds. They produce beautiful bullets with hardly a visible mold line. Regardless of cavities I set my mold under my Pro Melt on my self made SS mold shelf. The flat plate carries weight of the mold so I just open the valve and push the mold forward in a continuous motion, then close the valve. The amount of additional time it takes sliding the two extra cavities under the running spout wouldn't be worth mentioning. That mold goes to one side of my furnace setting it on a self made SS plate. I retrieve the other mold on the opposite side of the furnace, which was filled and cooling, tap the sprue cutter dropping the sprue to one side in my flat metal pan then tap the mold handle knuckle once and the 4 bullets drop out on the other side of the pan, refill the mold and the process continues until the pot is empty. My cut sprues are in a pile so they go in the pot with more ingots. Using this method I can drop a steady 20 bullets a minute until the pot is empty and end up with approximately 500 9mm bullet from a pot.

    My Brass molds also drop well, produce very consistent weight and teriffic looking bullets, but the heavier molds are more fatiguing to use and I tend to slow down somewhat.

    Big heavy molds like my old 6 & 10 cavity H&G produce more bullets in a drop, but I find the size & weight of these molds not pleasant to use.

    I only have a couple of 6 cavity Lee molds and used them only once when I found the 6 cavities were not uniform they went to the junk box.

  14. #54
    Boolit Man
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    Yeah I thought that cast iron molds dropped quickest. I want to try shooting these hg 68 clones from a rest, maybe I'll get something where besides Lee eventually.

  15. #55
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by weeple2000 View Post
    Yeah I thought that cast iron molds dropped quickest. I want to try shooting these hg 68 clones from a rest, maybe I'll get something where besides Lee eventually.
    Why don't you check out Evil Bay, I saw a H&G 4 cavity #68 plain base go for $70 a couple of weeks ago. I already have four 68's, 2 BB & 2PB, so I didn't need another one. You can't do any better as far the mold quality of H&G or the 68 bullet design for the 45 ACP. All the H&G molds originally came with the handles to fit the mold, so pass on those that do not have the handles.

    My brass molds drop just fine it is just maneuvering that extra weight of the molds, probably not the problem for younger hands without arthritis.

    My problem with Lee is my getting multi cavity molds and the bullets different dimensions and weights. In comparison I have several new manufacture NOE molds brass molds and the 8 bullets out of two identical 4 cavity molds are so close they could all have come out of a single cavity.

    To save you some time, here are several Ransom Rest powder coated 45 ACP #68 loads that can group under 1-1/2" at 25 yards. (4.6gr Bullseye, 4.2 gr. Red Dot, 4.6gr. WW231, 5.8 gr. VV-N340, 4.4gr. WST, 4.2gr. Clays)

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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