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Thread: Hello, new here question about buying boolits fir 450 BM bolt action

  1. #1
    Boolit Mold
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    Hello, new here question about buying boolits fir 450 BM bolt action

    Hello, new member here and have a question about buying cast boolits, yes I know buying them for shame, but being new I figured I would take as many variables out as possible. I have reloaded for a 308 a little and while unemployed from college couple years back, I tried to cast for a mosin but it didnt go so well. I think it was to much at once.

    So anyway I have a 450 BM ruger american I bought 2-3 years ago but have not shot much as I missed dear season due to work last couple of years and at 2 bucks a shot it kinda hurts the wallet.

    I am back visiting parents in mid Michigan while waiting for my next work run(military contractor) and thought to reload some rounds. I see some places sell cast bullets in 452 cal for around 10 cents and are powder coated.That seems pretty cheap as nobody here has wheel weights,and I would have to buy at around 30 cents a pound.

    Anyway I see that all cast boolets and the molds seem to be 452, but so are the regular bullets. From what I read, cast needs to be a bit bigger than normal. So if 450bm is 452, then wouldnt I need to have cast at something like 454, or 455? However I dont really see anything at that size, and custom molds arnt cheap for a noob.

    I have used google and read stuff on here, mostly in the past trying to cast for the stupid mosin.but most info that shows up is old and mostly for AR rifles.

    So any help would be appreciated, thanks.

  2. #2
    Boolit Master

    Rcmaveric's Avatar
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    Best bet is to measure your gun. See what it needs. You can use a groove diameter bullet, .002 over groove or a throat diamter. It all depends on what works best with that gun.

    You might not need a custom mold. Check out NOE and see what they have. Group buys and classifieds are great ways to get used and custom molds for reasonable prices.

    And welcome to the forum.

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  3. #3
    Boolit Master
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    There is a group buy going right now.
    http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...-Casull-460-SW
    “You don’t practice until you get it right. You practice until you can’t get it wrong.” Jason Elam, All-Pro kicker, Denver Broncos

  4. #4
    Boolit Buddy
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    While you are looking, lots of info at http://450bushmaster.net/ . While the site is not as active as this one there is still lots of good information in the archives there.

  5. #5
    Boolit Buddy Burnt Fingers's Avatar
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    You probably need to look at .454 bullets.
    NRA Benefactor.

  6. #6
    Boolit Mold
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    Thanks, I juat thought I would ask cuz it seems like everything for sale is 452 and for cast I would have thought 454 so you would get the slight oversize cast seems to need

    Taking my rifle in this week to get slugged, I dont have a kit or brass rod and pounding down a 45 cal BP revolver ball makes me worried.

    The goal would be to start by buying some afforable quality cast boolits to see if i can get any good groups and learn with. Then start to cast my own, though with the cost of lead, molds and such it is something to think about.

    I would love an afforable accurate bullet to use. For now it would be just white tail, coyote and targets. So nothing a good lead bullet cant hamdle. If i ever get the chance to hunt bear or elk or something like that id look at more performance bullets.

  7. #7
    Boolit Grand Master



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    I am odd man out here. Slugging barrels on older firearms is beneficial since the bores varied a lot. Today with modern manufacturing not so much. I always measure throats on a revolver. On newer rifles not so much. On new firearms I don't slug until I have a leading or accuracy issue or if I am going to order a custom mold.

    My bet is the bore will be closer than most peoples ability to measure the slug. Paying some to slug and measure it most likely will be a waste of money that could be spent on a inexpensive mold like a Lee. Once your get the mold try both sized and unsized if the unsized is not to large

    With a .452 mold the alloy and temperature will affect size but a .452 commercial mold should cast larger so the bullet will size to .452". PC coating will also add some size.

    http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...450-bushmaster

    http://450bushmaster.net/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=12143

    .454" here

    http://www.acmebullet.com/bullets-re...product_id=585
    Last edited by M-Tecs; 09-12-2019 at 06:17 PM.
    2nd Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. - "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."

  8. #8
    Boolit Master
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    I looked at the reloading data on the Hodgdon site and noticed that the jacketed bullets recommended measured .452". It is generally found that cast bullets be something between 1-3 Thousandths larger to sufficiently fill the groove diameter of the barrel. Going too large will perhaps cause a pressure spike when the case mouth is jammed in the throat. While I understand your expectations of sufficient accuracy in maintaining barrel specs, the quest is for a safe cast bullet load. We are trying to help a reloader that is inexperienced in the actual practice of cast bullet reloading and I would hope we are all basing our suggestions on doing it safely to avoid any small error that could have big consequences.

    I am not saying that the suggestion that not slugging the bore is a bad idea, but until that is done, who can say that the jacketed bullet at .452" is oversized and not necessary, or not. This way, the OP will know for sure what the minimum bullet diameter is needed to prevent leading. And being new to the process might save some frustration in the long run.

  9. #9
    Boolit Grand Master



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    The Ruger American 450 BM uses a 16.12" cold-hammer-forged barrel. Tolerances on hammer-forged barrels tend to be very consistent. The SAAMI specs for the 450 BM is a .453 throat with a .442" bore and .450" groove diameter with a .002" plus tolerance. Real world at measuring cold-hammer-forged barrel is that they tend to run .0005" over SAAMI minimums. Even at absolute max the throat would be .455" and the bore would be .452". https://saami.org/wp-content/uploads...sting-Copy.pdf specs page 147. Note I have only measured about a dozen hammer-forged rifle barrels with only two being Ruger's.

    Since the 450 BM headspaces off the case mouth a simple plunk test will address safety/pressure concerns. Again in the case of the 450 BM the case mouth does not go into the throat (neck) like on a bottle neck case. For most non-machinists the best way to measure the throat on something like this is a pound cast or next would be a chamber cast but why? Unless the load fails a plunk test, falls short of jacketed accuracy or leads why pay someone to measure the barrel?

    Real world establishing an accuracy standard with reloaded jacketed bullets is a cost effective good start. Next is accuracy and leading comparison of the 10 cent PC bullets. If they pass the plunk test and accuracy is equal or close to equal to the jacketed bullets without leading you have a winner.

    Next is determining how much you will actually shoot it. The Hornady Flex Tip 250 bullet is very common bullet for the 450BM. They can be had for 56 cents each https://www.midsouthshooterssupply.c...x-tip-50-count

    It appears the OP is not a high volume shooter or even a current caster????? so cost effectiveness of purchasing all the require equipment verse cost of the purchasing bullets may be a factor.

    To the OP purchasing wheel weights is no longer cost effective unless you can find old stashes. Today most wheel weights are steel or zinc. I have a source for two five gallon pail every month or two. I stopped taking them about two years ago due to them mostly being steel or zinc.
    Last edited by M-Tecs; 09-12-2019 at 08:59 PM.
    2nd Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. - "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."

  10. #10
    Boolit Master

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    The only pressure spikes i have noticed was jamming a bullet in the lands. The NRA Cast "Bullet supplement" recommend groove diameter bullet bodies and bore diameter noses but shallow multiples small grooves recommend .002 over groove. Cast bullets For beginers and experts recommends throat diameter. The Lyman Cast Bullet Handbook gives its own size recomendations in the reloading data.

    Quickloads indicates that raising a bullets diameter causes barely any pressure increases ( i think its like its like 4% over groove with no adverse effects to pressure). My own personal experiences using throat diameter bullets leads me to believe that throat diameter slightly more accurate due it being supported by throat and preventing deformation.

    I always recommend people experiment with different sizes and see what they and the gun like.

    They only thing i have seen in normal reloading that causes drastic pressure spike is sticking a bullet into the lands.





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  11. #11
    I'm A Honcho!
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    Im with MTecs on this one. I ordered 600 Speer Bonded 260 grain and 250 pieces of Starline Brass. Found a good load in the first box of 50 and haven’t gotten around to casting many bullets for my Savage 450 BM.

    https://www.midsouthshooterssupply.c...point-50-count
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  12. #12
    Boolit Mold
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    Thanks guys. When I called the scrap yard metal works a while back they said their scrap lead was 30 or 50 cents a pound. I dont know how well it is sorted though and what kind of lead, it could be car batteries for all i know.

    For casting I have 2 cast iron pots, a small propane stove, thick welder gloves, a cannister of harbor frieght powder coat powder, a lee mold for the mosin and a old toaster oven.

    If i was able to get a supply of lead I might look at casting later. When looking at reloading for the 450 I saw some cast boolits really cheap and was thinking that they the 450 uses heavy 45 cal ammo, so I could maybe use that.

    It seems anything marketed as 450 bm bullets are premium hunting rounds designed to take out elk bears etc but for white tail and making stuff explode I would think solid lead would be ok as I have killed deer with solid lead slugs from a 12 guage and muzzle loaders.

    I have not purchased the reloading dies yet. How does the lee kit work for cast boolits? Would I need a special expander to bell the case so i dont shave lead? Is the stock crimp die ok? I know some get a different one but it seems that is the AR guys, for bolt is stock ok?

  13. #13
    Boolit Grand Master



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    bluejays75 recommendation for 24 cent jacketed bullets would be my recommend starting point. Your 10 cent powder coated bullets maybe just fine but on the other hand they could be a source of various problems. There is a reason that high quality hand cast premium bullets can be more expensive than jacketed. Normally they are cast with certified alloy's and have a much higher GC. 10 cent bullets are going to be some form of unknown scrape that could have you chasing your tail over leading or accuracy issues.

    Do you currently load for any calibers? For a new loader the first goal is to learn how to reload safely, the second is to equal factory for accuracy and than to be able to surpass factory for accuracy. Less variables with jacketed to learn on. Once you get your jacketed loads to equal or surpass factory for accuracy start doing the same with cast. It can be done but the learning curve normally is much more of a challenge.
    2nd Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. - "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."

  14. #14
    Boolit Mold
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    Well I have reloaded a bit for a tika 308 with varget and seemed to get accuracy as good as factory at 100 yds(farthest i could shoot) .

    The cast boolit place is a company that seems to get good reviews for other calibers on here, they use a hitek coating that is supposed to do very well at keeping leading out od the barrel and getting good velocity.
    Like i said i was thinking along the lines of what you were saying and going with bullet of good quality to cut down on error factors from my casting, which is why i thought about buying commercial cast ammo.

    Also if I am able to get good accuracy and good speed then it should also work well for bambi .

  15. #15
    Boolit Master


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    Casting hunting bullets is a waste of time and money IMHO. (note: I only hunt deer and harvest a maximum of two per year)

    I found it challenging (near impossible) for a cast bullet to achieve jacketed bullet performance wrt accuracy and expansion. Just not worth the aggravation….I do not enjoy doing it. Cost of components adds up quickly. But I hunt with a .308, and your .450 will be more forgiving as accuracy requirements are less onerous and velocity is lower.

    Buy the factory bullet designed for the gun and work up a load. bluejay75 is on the right track...but you do not need 600 bullets.

    I use cast for plinking and practice but hunt with jacketed. Jacketed bullets give me complete confidence in the accuracy of the bullet and its ability to produce a humane kill.
    Don Verna

    NRA Endowment Member

  16. #16
    Boolit Grand Master



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    Most of the hunting I do is with jacketed bullets. In 35 Cal and larger for deer I have also used cast a lot and they work very well within limitations. If I ever shoot a Bison it will be with cast. I have cast and shot over a 1/4 million bullets so I real do appreciate the benefits of cast bullets. I have zero experience with PC so this may or may not be valid. With traditional cast and lubed I find it very easy to get great performance until I get into the 1,800 FPS range. After that various issues tend to arise. None of these issues are insurmountable but they do take much more effort of overcome. The 450 BM can push a 250 grain bullet at 2,200 FPS. That may be to much for some of the jacketed handguns bullets and I would be surprised if scrape lead 10 cent PC bullets will hold accuracy at that velocity.

    I shoot a lot of 45/70 with both cast and jacketed. In Marlin's or stronger actions it is possible to safely push 300 jacketed hollow point bullets fast enough that the unsupported lead on the hollow point spins off. Accuracy goes from excellent to 12 plus inches at fifty yards with visible lead splatter on the target.

    Hopefully some of the guys that enjoy pushing cast at higher velocities will weight in since their experience would be helpful.
    2nd Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. - "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."

  17. #17
    I'm A Honcho!
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    MTec went into a little more detail than I wanted to. But he knows what he is talking about. You might luck into the right alloy but chances are you won’t. That’s a large column of powder being fired off by a small rifle primer and most regular cast bookies won’t stand up to that. You could go heavier on the boolit and have a decent chance of finding a good load. But this caliber might be tricky or trickier to start your cast quest on.
    You never know how you rank amongst men 'til you have seen what will break another man.
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  18. #18
    Boolit Mold
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    Update just got back from the gunsmith and he used a 45 cal soft ball pushed from the muzzle . according to his measurements my bore is 455. He said up at the top it was a bit tighter amd opened up towards the chamber.

    I am really disappointed as I was hoping for a tigher bore so I could shoot the cast boolits.

    Since it appears I have a larger bore jacketed is the way to go as once you start to order special sizes the price goes up. Might as well spend a few pennies and get the hornady.

    I wonder if I got a bad barrel? Though accuracy at least out to 100yds aprox was pretty good so for now I will leave it. Bought a box of hornady black just to have some for deer season while I look more into reloading. Kills me to spend almost 2 bucks a shot though

  19. #19
    Boolit Grand Master



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    If it was measured correctly??????????? it is out of SAAMI spec by .003" . That is a manufacturing defect and Ruger will replace it. If mine no way in h*** I would keep it.

    Even with jacketed you still have .003" blow by.
    Last edited by M-Tecs; 09-13-2019 at 04:27 PM.
    2nd Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. - "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."

  20. #20
    Boolit Master


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    Quote Originally Posted by M-Tecs View Post
    If it was measured correctly??????????? it is out of SAAMI spec by .003" . That is a manufacturing defect and Ruger will replace it. If mine no way in h*** I would keep it.

    Even with jacketed you still have .003" blow by.
    Agree.

    I doubt the barrel is that far out, but if it is, you are in trouble.

    Easy to check. Shoot some factory ammo. If it groups larger than 3", you have a problem.
    Don Verna

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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