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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My son in law gave me a spool of solder that is mostly tin but it has a small amount of silver in it.  I use a piece of tin solder in my pot when I cast so my question is will the silver hurt my bullets?
I have one more question please. I have a 44 mag. 240 SWCHP mold. I am thinking of using it on a deer this year pushed by 21 grains of 2400. I notice no one hunts deer with cast hollowpoints. Is it because they do not penetrate well? Thanks Much
 

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Hi, Redhawk:
  I did a little research on silver on a couple of other boards a while back. Silver acts like tin in the alloy, to about the same extent. Mr. Bill Ferguson more or less told one fellow that he could add 3% silver solder but he won't be able to tell the difference from tin, IIRC. Most lead ore contains some silver anyway.  There's one commercial bullet maker (Laser-Cast??) that advertises that they've got silver in their alloy. Apparently they're also in the lead mining or smelting business and it costs more to extract the silver that it's worth.

Bye
Jack
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks Jack, that gives me some peace of mind. I am working on my loads for deer season and want everything just right. I am new to casting so I am constantly running up against unknowns.
 

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I also have tested bullets with silver content and believe it does help reduce leading when working at velocities at, or above, 1200 fps. There is more apparent on plainbase than gas checked bullets.
I have found that hollowpoint cast bullets do increase the terminal performance in bullets, if softer alloy is used, when impact velocity is between 600 and 1200 fps. Above that velocity, using harder alloy, the bullet TENDS to fragmate. Careful development of alloy can keep the bullet from fragmating at higher velocity, however one is better to depend on a large meplat for premanent wound channel.
As for the various cast bullets in the weight range of 240/265 gr, you bet they are great perfomers on deer size (and larger) game. Strive for controllability, rather than velocity! Any velocity around 1200 fps wil put meat on the table.
Best Regards, James
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks James,
I keep reading that zinc ruins bullets.  I have never read why zinc ruins them.  I wish someone would explain this?  I am sure others are curious as well.
 

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RH,

Zinc has the effect of increasing the surface tension of the molten alloy. This makes for poor mold fillout and the necessity of running the alloy hotter to try to compensate for it. Often to no avail.

High amounts of zinc in an alloy can at times lead to the alloy crumbling under stress.

A certain small amount of zinc in an alloy can be thought of as an impurity but higher amounts are detrimental.

Many wheelweight alloys are becoming contaminated with zinc and/or aluminum recently. One way to tell is look at the WW and see if it exhibits poor fillout from the WW mold itself. You'll see little fissures on it's surface. This can be either aluminum or zinc contamination causing the above described conditions.

Regards, Ray
 
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