40 S&W - bullet mould suggestion ?


December 24, 2006, 04:08 PM
Looking to do some 40 S&W caliber reloads with cast bullets.

Any suggestions for a bullet mould - I prefer Lee ones if possible.

The pistol I will be using is a Browning hi-power in 40 S&W.



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highlander 5
December 24, 2006, 04:30 PM
I use a Redding mold that cast a 150 gr SWC from my alloy 1/2 WW-1/2lino equal to Lyman no 2 alloy get good accuracy with my Beretta 96 and it feeds well. Sorry I don't know the mold number off hand

December 25, 2006, 02:27 AM
For the last twelve years, I've been using a 175 gr Lee semi-wadcutter mold with the tumble lube grooves for 10mm. It's a middle of the road bullet weight for 10mm, and will be slightly on the heavy side for .40 S&W. I'm just starting to reload .40 S&W, so I don't have any real world experience to report, but based on my experience with 10mm, including some practice loads that were so mild they were .40 S&W loads (1056 fps), I'm confident the 175 gr Lee mold will work well. If possible, get the 6-cavity molds as they make bullet casting very fast and efficient.

I've been shooting these lead reloads in my Glock G20. Glock advises not to use any reloads, and not to shoot lead in the polygonal rifled barrel. I have had no problems. I use a mildly abrasive bore cleaner to quickly (two minutes) remove all the lead from the barrel. I now have a policy of resizing all cast bullets. It adds some time to the process and it isn't strictly needed with the accurate Lee molds, as long as something didn't keep the mold sprung open, or the bullet wasn't cast when slightly liquid and dropped onto the meplat to cause it to get wider. The bullet sizing serves as a nice quality assurance step, and probably benefits accuracy, too.

December 25, 2006, 12:34 PM
I'm looking at the 175 grain LEE molds on Midaway - which would be better bullet shape to use - the Semiwadcutter, or the truncated cone ?

December 25, 2006, 02:09 PM
I've been using the semi-wadcutter for 10mm and it's been a very good bullet.


I just started using the 124 gr truncated cone for 9mm and so far it seems fine too.


I emailed Lee and asked them about 115 gr and 147 gr molds for 9mm and was told they stopped making them because sales were low. That surprised me. It seems like they'd be popular.

The deciding factor for me between the 175 gr semi-wadcutter with the tumble lube grooves and the 175 gr truncated cone with the single lube groove would not be the profile of the bullet nose. I chose the mold based mostly on the tumble lube feature. I like tumble lubing my cast bullets. It's very fast and the Lee AlOx lube works very well to prevent lead deposits in the bore.

I recently tried an experiment to dip the lower half of the bullets in diluted AlOx lube so only the tumble lube grooves and base were coated and the exposed parts of the bullets stayed nice and clean. I don't like the sticky lube on the bullets when I'm reloading, or when I'm loading the ammo into magazines to shoot. The initial experiement didn't work, but the concept is good. I just need better equipment. I'll try again.

December 25, 2006, 11:07 PM
I've had great luck with the 175 TL Lee 40 cal design cast with their 6 cavity mold. This was the first aluminum mold I've cast with and I think it works great. I've shot 5-6,000 rounds through my XD40 SC with no leading. I'm using reduced loads for practice and steel plate shooting.

Here's a pic of a 7 yard groupd fired with the XD:


I may be going out of the 40 S&W business and, if so, will have dies and my Lee mold for sale. I recently bought a SA 1911 SS loaded in 45 and really like it. I'd prefer to load for only one caliber so may sell the XD40 and buy a smaller 1911 or XD45 compact. You can pm me if you have any interest. I also have 3 coffee cans full of this bullet design sized and lubed.

I think the Lee 6 cavity mold is a great value. I also have two for 45 caliber. The Lee Liquid Alox has been great, as well.


December 26, 2006, 03:42 PM
You didn't mention the weapon you would be shooting the bullets in.

Before you buy the mold, get some bullets of similar design if not identical design, to make sure they will feed properly in your pistol.

December 26, 2006, 08:35 PM

if you're talking to me, I did mention the firearm in my initial post - a Browning hi-power in 40 S&W.

Your advice is good, I'll have to shop around some of the local gun stores and the gun show in January to see what might be available...

sent you a PM


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