cast 45 acp problem


October 25, 2009, 07:12 PM
Loaded some 200 gn cast bullets using 5.2 gns and increasing by .2 gn up to a total of 6.0 gns with Accurate #2. The accuracy at 25 yds was great, 8 of 10 in the 10 ring and the other two would be solid 9's. This was indoor rested on sandbags. The problem was that the loads were real smokey. Using the same loading with jacketed bullets, the accuracy was not near as good but there was no smoke. What gives? Love the accuracy, hate the SMOG. Any idea where the problem lies?

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October 25, 2009, 07:20 PM
Its your bullet lube burning.

October 25, 2009, 07:32 PM
Is this normal and can it be overcome?

October 25, 2009, 07:57 PM
Try several different lubes and select the lube that works best with your load...less smoke.

October 25, 2009, 09:14 PM
These bullets were purchased from Grandmaster Bullets and the lube is red. Since I don't cast I must purchase. Wonder if Grandmaster offers different lube?

Maj Dad
October 25, 2009, 09:55 PM
I haven't encountered any lube that doesn't smoke - some are worse (if you don't like smoke) than others. I have always enjoyed the aroma of gunsmoke, whether lube-enhanced or not :cool: If it's giving your position away, it's a different story :eek:

October 25, 2009, 10:08 PM
Truthfully, I have no experience with cast bullets, they just seemed like a low cost alternative. I suppose I could live with the smoke and it would not be a problem out doors but it is a bite indoors. I must say that I am impressed with the accuracy and was surprised that the cast was more accurate than the jacketed loads. When it comes to concealment, a 300 Whisper with a can and never exceeding 1050 fps at the muzzle with a 220 grain match boattail has always seemed like a fine idea to me.

October 26, 2009, 05:23 PM
As has been identified, it is the lube. If you search over at cast boolits, they may have some lube recipes that will be less smokey. Seems like I have read something to that effect there.

The smoke doesn't bother me, so I don't really pay much attention to solutions I have seen.

chris in va
October 26, 2009, 10:39 PM
Sorry, ignorant question...but what happens when you shoot bare lead bullets without lube? Does it foul the barrel? I literally gassed people out of the indoor range last time after shooting 200 rounds of my TC 9mm.

October 26, 2009, 10:50 PM
The lube is there to lubricate your barrel and not foul it up. Without it, it will lead up.

I only shoot outdoors and only shoot cast lead bullets so it's not a problem for me.

October 26, 2009, 11:01 PM
If the smoke is that big a problem in your indoor range I'd get my lead levels tested. It is fairly obvious youre not getting enough clean air, maybe the filters need to be changed.

BTW most of the lead comes from the primer not the bullet base.

October 27, 2009, 05:12 AM
The smoke is not a huge problem, I am unfamiliar with shooting cast and was frankly not anticipating the smoke problem. I can overlook it as long as it is normal. Our ventilation is very good I just wanted to be sure there was not a problem here. I find it is wise to ask instead of assume. Hell, I even stop to ask directions.

October 27, 2009, 11:48 AM
Some extra smoke can come from powder, 700X is one of them. Try Alliant Bullseye for light to mid-range indoor loads with cast.

October 27, 2009, 12:28 PM
Lubes with Alox will smoke a lot, that's why I avoid them. try to find out if they are lubed with it ?

October 27, 2009, 12:34 PM
There's also a problem with breathing smoke from alox, rise in blood pressure I believe. Not positive about this, someone research it out please.

October 27, 2009, 01:10 PM
Some have tried American Select powder to reduce smoke when shooting lead bullets. I use Bullseye myself, and the combination of bullet lube and Bullseye can produce plenty of smoke in the right conditions, but it doesn't generally bother me. All my shooting is outdoors.

Hope this helps.


October 27, 2009, 01:17 PM
I literally gassed people out of the indoor range last time after shooting 200 rounds of my TC 9mm.

Sounds like the range needs better ventilation. I use LLA and heavy at some times and man can it smoke. But the range has a good vent system that evacuates it before you can breath it.

October 27, 2009, 01:56 PM
Like the Major, I too enjoy the smell of gun fire. It brings back memories of when I first started shooting .22s when around 7 or 8 years old. That smell of nitro has not changed in all these years. But, unlike the Major, I don't like the smell of most bullet lubes, but I don't find them offensive.

If there are any out there that doesn't produce smoke, I haven't found any. Most have a waxey base, and wax produces smoke when burned. As for powders? I've never paid any attention to how much smoke they produce. I never use any of the fast burning powders for jacketed loads, so I wouldn't see much smoke. I know Unique leaves a lot of partially burned flakes behind, but I never noticed any more smoke with it.

October 27, 2009, 07:19 PM
The cast bullet smoke and smell makes my testosterone levels rise.

It's quite habit forming.

October 27, 2009, 07:39 PM
I love the smell of burning lube in the morning...


October 27, 2009, 08:41 PM
The worst lube for smoke in my experience is NRA formula at lower pressures: 50% Beeswax, 50% Alox 2138F. This is not to be confused with Lee Liquid Alox, which is not very smokey. Both these lubes are brown, one being a greasy stuff in the bullet grooves, the other being a brown film. The same lube at 35,000 psi produces no smoke.

There are lots of other lubes, of just about every color of the rainbow. Most commercial bullets have really hard lubes, which are not very good lubes, but the .45 acp you are using is not very demanding.

I would try some other powders. You could also buy some un-lubed bullets and use Lee Liquid Alox on them.

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