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Casting your own?

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by kount_zer0, Nov 30, 2007.

  1. kount_zer0

    kount_zer0 New Member

    Dec 23, 2006
    I'm just getting into cast bullet accuracy with my RBH 45 Colt. I appreciate all the feedback on powder selection.

    My question is simple ;)

    With LBT back in business and all of the usefull info available "at a glance", is it "worth it" to start casting now? With metal prices through the roof and cast bullet (in a box-over the counter) following suit, I've been interested in casting my own for a while now. I think I can get better results, more tailor made projectiles and the pride and satisfaction of a job well done, on paper as well as game (it's always Jug O' Water season anyway).

    But, what about cost savings? Is this still valid. I've got no source for free or near free lead. WW alloy is what I'd like to shoot even water-dropped from what I've read, but I'd be buying this retail unless I can find a local source for cheap.

    Sorry for the long post.

    Thank you for such a great forum.
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2007
  2. ReloaderFred

    ReloaderFred Mentor

    Apr 28, 2005
    Oregon Coast
    Casting bullets can either be an enjoyable pursuit, of a bothersome chore, depending on your nature and needs. I find it enjoyable to be able to cast bullets that I can't get anywhere else.

    It's just like reloading when it comes to buying the original equipment. The initial cost seems high, but amortized out over many years makes it much more economical. I've got several thousand dollars invested in casting equipment, but I make bullets that I can't find anywhere else with it. (how about a .577 Snyder hollow base bullet?)

    Your biggest problem is going to be finding a source of lead alloy. Wheelweights work great for pistol caliber bullets, and will suffice for most informal paper punching and plinking. For rifle calibers, you'll have to find a source for harder alloys, in most cases, but wheelweights can be made to work for them, too. It just takes a little more tinkering to get the right size, etc.

    Hope this helps.

  3. Misfire99

    Misfire99 member

    Aug 9, 2007
    Yea it's worth it even if you have to pay retail for your lead. One of the guns I cast for is a 45/70 and I shoot 500 grain bullets. This is a lot of lead. I looked into buying cast bullets for it and compared what it cost me to cast. It turned out that my bullets cost about half of what it costs to buy them. One of the best prices on base metal is at http://www.rotometals.com/
    They have alloys that you can melt into your wheel weights and make very hard bullets. Such as the copper and lead alloy. They also have pure lead ingots and free shipping on orders over 99$ and 30 pounds or under. You can also get lino type from Midwayusa as well as pure lead. Casting bullets is an art. The key is temperature control. Anytime you are melting metal, such as casting or welding, the key is temperature control. The molds have to be at the right temp and the melt has to be at the right temp. And it has to be fluxed properly. I have always used a bottom pour pot but some people say it better to use a ladle.
  4. dmftoy1

    dmftoy1 Senior Member

    Nov 17, 2003
    Lexington, IL
    I think you got good advice . . .you really have to look at what you enjoy and what you don't. I really get a kick out of reloading bullet that I've cast myself. When my nephew visits this year for christmas we're going to smelt wheel weights into ingots, ingots into bullets, load the bullets and then go whack some steel. :)

    I'd recommend reading the forums at http://castboolits.gunloads.com I've just been doing it a year and those guys were great at answering my questions.

  5. Wildfire

    Wildfire Participating Member

    Nov 2, 2007
    How much do you shoot?

    Casting is fun. i have cast 100s of thousands of rounds for competative shooting. There is no way I could have paid over the counter prices for bullets at the rate we consumed them. My son and I would fire 1000 to 2000 rounds a week for practice and then the shoots themselves would eat up bullets too.
    I use a Magma Master caster and Star luber. This will turn out a lot of bullets in a short time. But You may spend near $2000.00 to get set up like that.
    There are a lot cheaper ways of doing this. It will not be high volume but still fun. Even with retail cost of metal it is still less money to cast your own.:)

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