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Elk Whisperer (Super Moderator)
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All he needs to add is Tin to get what he needs. I shoot 16 to 1 alloy in a 45/70 and 38/55 and have zero leading problems at the speeds he's loading to.
Yep.

RJ
 

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Discussion Starter · #22 ·
I guess I'll just use standard clip wheel weights. The hollow points will probably get a little expansion. The old timers used this mold a lot for hunting. I've read Skeeter Skelton articles and it was one of his favorites.
 

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I guess I'll just use standard clip wheel weights. The hollow points will probably get a little expansion. The old timers used this mold a lot for hunting. I've read Skeeter Skelton articles and it was one of his favorites.
If you have them, use the tape weights, these are soft lead. Then get some 50/50 bar solder, you can buy this locally at a plumbing supply company. Use anywhere from a 10 to 1 and up mix. Makes some real purdy bullets (much better than plain clip weights) and will not lead your barrels.
 

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No, pure lead with a gas check will lead like no tomorrow. Way too soft. I tried it with 4 grains of Bullseye (Lyman's 43rd) at 950 fps. Dad's Security Six and I got really well aquatinted while I was scrubbing it out. You want #2 alloy minimum.

RJ
disagree, size is king
 

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Elk Whisperer (Super Moderator)
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disagree, size is king
Just my experience as a young bullet caster and I was using pure lead acquired from the local plummer and from recycled batteries that I was casting round balls and maxi balls with. Gas checked and sized to .359 for a true and honest .357 bore.

You do what you want with pure lead, I tried it once and it didnt turn out so well.

RJ
 
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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
I've got a pound or so of 50/50 bar solder I got at a scrap metal yard. Thanks
 

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disagree, size is king
In Elmer Keith's reloading manual , "Sixgun Cartridges and Loads" he warns NOT to use pure soft lead bullets in Magnum and heavy revolver loads as they are soft , deform and actually raise pressures to a dangerous level ... he recommends a alloy of 1 lb. tin to 20 lbs. Lead (1 / 20 ) for all light and normal pressure loads .
It's not leading with pure lead bullets but an increase in pressure that might be problematic .
Size is also important too .
Gary
 

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Keith later wound up switching from 20:1 to 16:1 lead:tin, IIRC. BHN around 12 or 13. Pure lead is BHN 4.5, again, IIRC.
 
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Elk Whisperer (Super Moderator)
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Linotype is what he used, 17-2-1, 85% lead, 10% antimony and 5% tin.

Mostly Charlie got tired of cleaning the lead out of the barrels of Elmer's 🤢 revolvers.

RJ
 

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In Elmer Keith's reloading manual , "Sixgun Cartridges and Loads" he warns NOT to use pure soft lead bullets in Magnum and heavy revolver loads as they are soft , deform and actually raise pressures to a dangerous level ... he recommends a alloy of 1 lb. tin to 20 lbs. Lead (1 / 20 ) for all light and normal pressure loads .
It's not leading with pure lead bullets but an increase in pressure that might be problematic .
Size is also important too .
Gary
I would certainly not disagree with Elmer as he had far more experience than I'll ever have. My post was assuming near correct alloy for the pressure and velocity. Soft lead in a 300WSM would be a fools chase. Soft lead in a 357Mag is quite doable if you download and have the correct size. Linotype in a 357 Mag works good but can lead if your sizing is not correct.

All great answers to my post pointing this out and gives me a reminder to be more clear.
 

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Discussion Starter · #31 ·
I loaned my mould to a friend and he's gonna do some hollow point. I made him a hollow point pin for it. I don't know what happened to the original.
 

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Lyman had two-part bullet molds at one point so you could cast a pure lead soft-point nose or hollow point, then you glued it into a bottom cast from #2 and the resembled a short, hollow point wadcutter, IIRC. They dropped it though. I can imagine problems with getting the centers of gravity of the two halves perfectly aligned and causing accuracy issues, but I never owned one of those molds, so I don't know for certain.

If you want to be sure pressure won't deform a base, Richard Lee's data boils down to a simple formula. A close-enough approximation is to multiply your BHN by 1300 and take the result as your maximum peak pressure before deformation starts to occur. For pure lead, this is just under 6,000 psi, about like some of the old small and light BP cartridge pocket revolvers would use. At BHN 28, Linotype would be good to about 36,400 psi.
 

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Just my experience as a young bullet caster and I was using pure lead acquired from the local plummer and from recycled batteries that I was casting round balls and maxi balls with. Gas checked and sized to .359 for a true and honest .357 bore.

You do what you want with pure lead, I tried it once and it didnt turn out so well.

RJ
I use pure very rarely outside of balls for muzzle loading. But if you keep the pressure and velocity down it can be done. As a general rule I use 50/50 for most everything as I have a shooting box and recover the bullets to use again. As for the recycled batteries, how did you get that lead? Did you do it yourself?
 

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As for the recycled batteries, how did you get that lead? Did you do it yourself?
Yep. A big hammer and lots of water to wash the leftover acid away during recovery. These were mostly 4D and 8D batteries with a few automotive size. Surprisingly very little lead in a car battery once it's been sulphated. An 8D might yield 5-6 pounds.

RJ
 
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...And you have to be careful with the smelting. It's become a problem in third-world countries where dead batteries are all smashed up by hand in a pit and the lead smelted out in the open nearby. It turns out the arsenic and antimony in the lead foam that hardens it against damage by vibration also react with sulfuric acid and heat to make arsine and stibine gases, both of which were proposed as chemical warfare agents and they are capable of killing at pretty low levels. So, you want to be upwind of it. If I were doing this, I would dip the plates in baking soda solution to neutralize the acid and then soak them in water for a while to remove traces, and then dry them in the hot sun to be sure all the water is gone before you try to melt it.
 
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Melting the lead out of low maintenance batteries is dangerous. The arsenic is a vapor at 300C and completely condenses at 70 to 80C. Taking arsenic internally as salts in a powder or vapor can kill you with or without the sulfuric acid.
 

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Just my experience as a young bullet caster and I was using pure lead acquired from the local plummer and from recycled batteries that I was casting round balls and maxi balls with. Gas checked and sized to .359 for a true and honest .357 bore.

You do what you want with pure lead, I tried it once and it didnt turn out so well.

RJ
Maybe that guy ...Elmer Keith ... who wrote a book on casting bullets and reloading - " Sixgun Cartridge & Loads " (1936) might have known a little something about casting and loading pure lead bullets in heavy revolver loads ? Possibility Deputy Dawg ... Possibility !
You can find what he says on the first page of chapter 4 .
What he says is what Recoil Junky says ... Don't do it !
Gary
 

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Discussion Starter · #39 ·
Maybe that guy ...Elmer Keith ... who wrote a book on casting bullets and reloading - " Sixgun Cartridge & Loads " (1936) might have known a little something about casting and loading pure lead bullets in heavy revolver loads ? Possibility Deputy Dawg ... Possibility !
You can find what he says on the first page of chapter 4 .
What he says is what Recoil Junky says ... Don't do it !
Gary
I agree, I was asking in original post thinking maybe pure lead would be ok with gas checks. But, I understand that's not gonna happen. Things can get sticky, fast.
 

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A sort of general rule of thumb I extracted from Richard Lee's work on cast bullet accuracy is that bullets will start to bump up and deform when peak pressure exceeds about 1400 times the Brinnel Hardness Number of the alloy. So the usual BHN 16 magnum bullet alloys would see that above 22,400 psi. As you then load them higher, accuracy starts to degrade, and metal fouling increases. A gas check does a lot to extend the usable pressure above that ×1400 limit before accuracy starts to show. It does this by preventing base distortion and reducing metal fouling caused by bypass gas cutting. But for the very highest accuracy with plain-base cast bullets, stay below that calculated limit and you will find you can often fire bullets with no lubrication and still not foul your bore if it is in good condition.

At a BHN of 4.5, pure lead will begin to deform at about 6,300 psi. That's pretty low pressure, even by handgun target load standards. I've seen photos of a few 19th Century lightweight lady's pocket revolvers that were proofed at pressure that low, but they were clearly for very, very low-power loads.
 
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