Need DIY Bullet lube help.


June 20, 2012, 03:35 PM
I've started casting my own .38 spl and have been pan lubing them with my own lube made from the most recommended components. Sunday I shot them inside for the first time and realized that they make my CA Undercover revolver smoke like a civil war musket. I was wondering if anyone had any experience with homemade lube and if they could suggest an alterations to my recipe to cut the smoke down a bit.
my current recipe is:
21 tealight candles (unscented white paraffin)
13 OZ generic petroleum jelly
1 tspn STP oil treatment
1 crayon

Was thinking of mixing up a batch with some bees wax substituted or maybe some white lithium in place of some petroleum jelly. Eitherway, any info is highly appreciated and I will post the results to compare for future reference (Please no links to stores selling premade lube).

Thanx Much

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June 20, 2012, 03:39 PM
Try swapping the petroleum jelly for something else. Gunpowder burns in the absence of oxygen. Generally petroleum does not, so you might expect some incomplete combustion. I'm no expert on the matter, just exercising my chemistry teachings a bit. My physics is rather weak by comparison, so the fact that its in the barrel for only a few hundredths of a second may change that assumption, I dont know.

By the same token your paraffin could be what's smoking. It has similar properties to the jelly. Try graphite? LOL.

June 20, 2012, 04:21 PM
Try just the Beeswax and lithium grease. I think it's commonly called "Lithi-Bee". Look here, read the stickies, for a bunch of recipes for do-it-yerself bullet lube;

I would guess the smoke is mainly from the vaseline...

June 20, 2012, 05:39 PM
I use a mixture of Beeswax, Parafine wax aka candle wax, Carnuba auto wax, & mineral oil. Minerial oil is added to the mix and the mix is allowed to hardel to check for softness/hardness. If I wish it harder more parafine is added, if I want it softer more mineral oil is added.

This works for me and I get no leading, even in rifle loads. Crayons? no need for color.

June 20, 2012, 06:56 PM
You should also read this:

June 20, 2012, 07:09 PM
You can try the " Recluse Lube "
45% of Liquid Lee Alox
45% of Johnsons Paste Wax ( Get it at Lowes )
10% Mineral Spirits.

Beeswax and Petroleum Jelly worked great for me in 9mm. I got no leading after shooting 100 rounds with W-231. They did smoke a bit tho....

June 20, 2012, 07:19 PM
You can`t buy the material & make your own as cheap as ya can get it from

Ive tried !

I use the carnauba red , needs a bit of heat in a lubsizer but it`s low smoke & works !!

With that said I see 2 ingredients that burn readily the parafin & PJ ,If I was gonna use this up I would try a small sample & mix a very small amount of lanolin ,it should encapsulate some of the petroleum products thus slowing the burn down & make it stick better

June 20, 2012, 07:46 PM
Buy a bottle of Lee liquid Alox and Fogadaboutit!

One bottle will last longer then you will saving all that money and breathing all that carcinogen laden smoke.

In the grand scheme of reloading supplies, there is no meaningful money to be saved making bullet lube or case lube.


June 20, 2012, 08:05 PM
Another vote 45/45/10. Makes application a lot easier than straight LLA. Tumble lubing works just fine for 38 Special.

Brought to you by TapaTalk.

June 20, 2012, 09:27 PM
Get your wax in the canning dept of your grocery store, you can buy it by the boxful. Its plain paraffin wax.

June 20, 2012, 10:36 PM
My wife likes to burn scented candles in the winter, I use the leftovers, plus I get short candles from church. Then there's also the parafine seal from home made jelly jars.

Bee's wax, we have lots of Amish bee keepers locally and the wax is super cheap if not free at times.

Carnuba auto wax, usually pick up cheap paste wax from Big Lots, one jar lasts a long time.

Mineral oil, always have some around for lubing precision tools or kitchen appliances.

That pretty much covers it all.

June 20, 2012, 10:49 PM
I mixed 2 parts paste wax (not cooked down) with 1 part Lee Liquid Alox or White Label X-lox, and apply it to the bullets while they are warm -- almost hot. It's much less messy than Alox by itself, and it's cheaper to use.

June 21, 2012, 10:03 AM
I shoot 45acp indoors and am on a similar quest to reduce smike. I've tried the following lubes:

100% Alox
45/45/10 (aka RecluseLube)
TAC#1 (from Randyrat on castboolits)

TAC#1 creates the least smoke.

June 21, 2012, 06:41 PM
I've made my own version of Lithi-Bee. Found an inexpensive source of real beeswax to make it cheap.

I weighed 8 oz of Moly-Lithium grease in a little saucepan. I heated that till it melted on my camping stove in the driveway. Made sure that I had a tight-fitting lid because grease this hot is near its flash point. Once liquidied I simply turned off the stove and dropped in an 8 oz chunk of beeswax. It will melt and fully dissolve in the grease in a minute or two.

After it's cooled down a bit I pour it directly into my lubesizer. Excess gets poured into a 1" PVC pipe mold with wooden dowel in the center. This 50:50 ratio gives a semi-hard lube that requires gentle heat to flow in winter or as is during the summer heat.

June 21, 2012, 06:55 PM
The OP asked for a recipe that doesn't create too much smoke and people are suggesting alox??????? he certainly does not want anything with alox in it if he's bothered by the smoke. The only thing i use now is the 45/45/10 or purchased lubes and i have only made lube in years past for BP guns so i can't offer any help, but the answer to your question can be had by following the link in post #3.

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