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Thread: Lead round balls

  1. #1
    Boolit Bub
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Goshen, IN.
    Posts
    36

    Lead round balls

    I've been buying my lead round balls and my other muzzle loader need's at Track the wolf. Just went to order more and the prices are much higher. To high for me. I'm looking for another place to buy. Suggestions
    I'M FROM THE GOVERNMENT....I'M HERE TO HELP!!

  2. #2
    Boolit Grand Master

    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Southern Illinois
    Posts
    6,075
    Everything is going up. Maybe time to start casting your own.
    Aim small, miss small!

  3. #3
    Boolit Master

    FLINTNFIRE's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Longview, Washington
    Posts
    1,391
    What sizes are you shooting ? And casting them is the way to go , but let the membership know what sizes , post a ad in swapping and selling and I would bet you will get responses .

  4. #4
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    1,577
    I got in to casting because I wanted revolver bullets for hunting, and the ones I bought were Kaido’s bullets that he charged $40/100 + shipping and then raised to $50. The cost in lead is about $3 and I’d never be at the whim of a supplier. And for balls it was about half of that. Doesn’t take long to recoup your money if you shoot a lot.

  5. #5
    Boolit Mold
    Join Date
    Jan 2021
    Location
    Asheville, NC
    Posts
    1
    Casting is the best decision ive ever made in regards to my firearms hobby. The most expensive thing I've acquired in my casting equipment was a bullet mold i designed for hunting that I had tom over at accurate molds make for me.

    I suggest buying roundball/boolit molds and the Lyman big dipper set. The lyman set is 120 $ and worth every penny.

    Over time youll build up a nice array of stuff to keep your guns shooting as long as you own em!

  6. #6
    Boolit Man
    Join Date
    Nov 2020
    Location
    Oklahoma
    Posts
    81
    As everyone else has already said, cast your own! You’ll be better off making your own than to be at the mercy of others.

  7. #7
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    May 2017
    Posts
    2,209
    Quote Originally Posted by rodwha View Post
    I got in to casting because I wanted revolver bullets for hunting, and the ones I bought were Kaido’s bullets that he charged $40/100 + shipping and then raised to $50. The cost in lead is about $3 and I’d never be at the whim of a supplier. And for balls it was about half of that. Doesn’t take long to recoup your money if you shoot a lot.
    You wont beat LEE molds for roundball - they make the best ball with no sprue so long as you dont have an oddball size and they are cheap.
    Pedersoli makes a better size range and almost as nice of a cast as the LEE mold. Lots of old fashioned molds out there with a longer sprue channel - they shoot fine but always fiddling to get the sprue up top.

  8. #8
    Boolit Master


    GregLaROCHE's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2018
    Location
    Southern France by way of Interior Bush Alaska
    Posts
    2,925
    Start casting your own. The only thing you need is a mold, old pan, soup ladle and a heat source to start. Lead too of course and if you are patching, it doesn’t need to be pure lead.

  9. #9
    Boolit Master


    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Aberdeen, South Dakota
    Posts
    4,811
    Yes, unless you are only shooting 100 a year, it makes no sense to be buying muzzleloader balls. They are so easy to cast, you could cast them from a big spoon for a ladle. Lee molds are top of the line in round balls. They cut the sprue flush, which is nice, but the real benefit is that they cast a more round round-ball than any other manufacturer I've used. Lyman, Dixie, and Jeff Tanner molds are all quite good, but are usually about .003"-.005" out of round. Lee round balls are often .001" or less out of round.

    That's exactly how I got started casting. In fact my first ever mold was a buckshot mold I made myself from a block of wood. Yes, you can cast balls in wood. They look like raisins, but they work. I found a spoon, and a heavy steel bowl, and I cast them beside a small fire, didn't cost me a cent. Exchange that for $25 Lee mold, and you have a fine muzzleloader ball making factory.

  10. #10
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    May 2017
    Posts
    2,209
    Quote Originally Posted by megasupermagnum View Post
    Yes, unless you are only shooting 100 a year, it makes no sense to be buying muzzleloader balls. They are so easy to cast, you could cast them from a big spoon for a ladle. Lee molds are top of the line in round balls. They cut the sprue flush, which is nice, but the real benefit is that they cast a more round round-ball than any other manufacturer I've used. Lyman, Dixie, and Jeff Tanner molds are all quite good, but are usually about .003"-.005" out of round. Lee round balls are often .001" or less out of round.

    That's exactly how I got started casting. In fact my first ever mold was a buckshot mold I made myself from a block of wood. Yes, you can cast balls in wood. They look like raisins, but they work. I found a spoon, and a heavy steel bowl, and I cast them beside a small fire, didn't cost me a cent. Exchange that for $25 Lee mold, and you have a fine muzzleloader ball making factory.
    Interesting ! I never measure checked my LEE RB molds (not compared to others anyway) Shot a lot of Hornady swaged ball in matches before I switched over and the LEE stuff did just as well for me - I really like the flush sprue - put the cast balls in a canvas bag with some powdered graphite - tumble it around for a couple minutes, the sprue mark is gone, the balls stay shiny new in storage, easy loading.........

  11. #11
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    976
    I just ordered .455. LEE, hollow base Minnie's, and they were $11.80 per 25 count. when I ordered them on the tele, and they went up to $ 18.11 per 25 count. the good news is that they arrived in 4 days! can you believe it?

  12. #12
    Boolit Master Sasquatch-1's Avatar
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    Jan 2012
    Location
    Martinsburg, WV
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    2,087
    As mentioned, getting into casting is easy and use to be cheap. The only thing you had to buy was a mold. When I started I used an old soup can on top of the stove. That is until I had a steam explosion and my wife banned me from the kitchen. If you watch the old movies (that are somewhat accurate) they actually are melting and casting from a shallow pan ladle of sorts over a camp fire.

    Get your self a mold and some lead and go to it. Next thing you know you will be casting for modern hand guns and rifles.
    A vote for anyone other then the conservative candidates is a vote for the liberal candidates.

  13. #13
    Boolit Grand Master

    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Southern Illinois
    Posts
    6,075
    I started as a teenager doing slingshot pellets. Found an old pot and mad a ladle with a stick and a metal top to a spay can on a coleman stove. A friend of the family was a plumber and told me how to do it. WWs could be had from most gas stations for free.
    Aim small, miss small!

  14. #14
    Boolit Master taco650's Avatar
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    Jan 2013
    Location
    OR->LaGrange GA
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    I agree with the others that casting your own will save money in the long run. I've been casting my own for over ten years now and found it very satisfying. I've bought buckets of ww's from a tire store and collected my own over the years. I also collect spent ones at the range now and then. Takes some work so be prepared to do it.

  15. #15
    Boolit Buddy
    Join Date
    Apr 2020
    Location
    Pemberton, New Jersey
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    120
    Casting is the way to go BUT, When was the last time any of you saw molds for sale? I have been looking for 430 and 545 molds for a year now and I sure as hell am not paying 100.00 for one!

  16. #16
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
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    1,169
    Quote Originally Posted by Rickf1985 View Post
    Casting is the way to go BUT, When was the last time any of you saw molds for sale? I have been looking for 430 and 545 molds for a year now and I sure as hell am not paying 100.00 for one!
    Probably in todays market (supply/demand )and based on your statement your right ,you probably never will .Expect yester yrs prices in one hand and in the other / see what fills yer hand 1st/Ed

  17. #17
    Boolit Buddy

    Buzzard II's Avatar
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    Nov 2011
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    Northern New Jersey
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    465
    Cast your own. Cheaper in the long run.
    SMOKELESS IS JUST A PASSING FAD!-STEVE GARBE
    NRA ENDOWMENT MEMBER
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  18. #18
    Boolit Master Hellgate's Avatar
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    Jan 2008
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    Orygun
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    547
    biglube.com sells 6 cavity ball molds (as does TOW) that make casting a quick and speedy process. A couple of days ago I spent from about 9 to noon and cast up 600 .454 balls for my Cowboy Action matches where I use percussion revolvers. Most CAS shooters use smokeless powder and load suppositories (cartridges) into the rear of their cylinders. I load from the front. The multi cavity gang molds sure shorten the sessions but I have cast many thousands with the LEE double cavity molds that are very affordable.
    Hellgate in Orygun
    With 16+revolvers, I've been called the Imelda Marcos of cap&ball.
    If you do not subscribe to a newspaper you are uninformed. If you do subscribe to a newspaper you are misinformed. Mark Twain
    ”We know they are lying, they know they are lying, they know we know they are lying, we know they know we know they are lying, yet they are still lying.” –Aleksandr Isayevich Solzhenitsyn

  19. #19
    Boolit Bub
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Delaware
    Posts
    50
    I buy the expensive $3/lb lead from Rotometals and cast .530 RB's with a Lee mold for about $0.10 a piece. Smaller calibers are much more economical. Lee molds are great for RB's, but at the moment can be hard to find. I just received a .350 mold I ordered 6 months ago from TOW. Lead has always been easy to find, so once you have a mold you will have an endless and cheap supply. Lee RB molds run about $22 for a 2-cavity. Almost invisible sprue and very accurate and consistent, at least in my guns.

  20. #20
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Posts
    1,169
    Lead is no longer easy to find ,and it will only get worse with new regs . And we all heard about primers/powder too but everyone said never happen ,but here we are same (stuff) different day!/Ed

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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