Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by AJC1, Jun 5, 2021.
I'll edit to add this really depends on the amount of copper fouling you have and your maintenance of the bore during that time.
Small amounts of copper fouling isn't bad. If there's a lot you will "tin" the bbl in less than 20 rounds in a high power rifle.
99.9% of my shooting is with cast bullets except for the 223rem's. What I've found is that if I shoot a lot of jacketed bullet in 1 session or over a period of time in a firearm I deep clean the copper out of them to shoot cast/lead bullets. If I've shot a bunch of cast/lead/lubed/coated bullets in a firearm or over a long period of time I can shoot jacketed bullets in them with out deep cleaning & it will not affect the bbl.
This was also an issue with the early Barnes X bullet, which was pure or nearly pure copper. They were “VERY” sensitive to a rough bore. They “did not” like to follow typical “gilding alloy” jacketed bullet, and consequently left a lot of fouling and had poor accuracy. I have hand lapped rifle bores, and substantially improved the accuracy and reduced the fouling characteristics of the original Barnes. The newer, “grooved” (TSX,TTSX,LRX) Barnes’ are much improved regarding fouling and accuracy.
As I’m now going to powder coated cast bullets, they may be more forgiving than typical “lubed” cast bullets, when following jacketed bullets. I haven’t done enough shooting the powder coated bullets to give a “reasonable” guess!
As I shoot cast in numerous cartridges, and only use Barnes in our hunting rifles, I now lap/polish the bores of every firearm we have.....with the exception of handguns which will be used “only” for close-up work! I think that the additional effort spent on rifle and longer range handgun barrels is time well spent! memtb
This is similar to my experience.
I don't have issues following jacketed with cast in the rifles I've lapped.
Ones that have pitting are a one bullet only gun.
Most folks still subscribe to not mixing. Which to be fair,is the "safe" way. But there's such a broad spectrum of shooting cast,much moreso than JB's. "Most" jacketed shooting is looking for some serious,within that chambering,velocity.
I shoot cast exclusively out of rifles... period. And it's a rare rig here that isn't slinging them at starting JB speeds. Just don't mess around with light loads. Also don't powder coat. For me,I want to KNOW what the rig is able to produce coming off a "deep clean". That is,JB paste... scrub down to the bare metal. There's reasons for this from a varmint hunting,cold bore... no foulers allowed,standpoint. Not to be confused with competition where fouled barrels and practice shots are the order.
So,long way around to say I prefer a spotlessly clean barrel. I shoot typically slow for cartridge powders which leave just enough carbon to act as lube. Because there sure as heck ain't any to speak of on most of the cast bullets I shoot. They get the tiniest bit just above the GC... and that ain't much! Cleaning between 20-40 shots. But that's as much to do with keeping carbon rings in check at these speeds. There is no leading in the conventional sense. Occasionally a little antimony "wash" on some of the stupid fast stuff... but these are knocking on the door of 3k fps. And is as much a function of certain neck clearance/jam specs as it is alloy or pressure. As well as case shape.
Deep rabbit hole. I personally use a Case backhoe... and am very prideful to say we can durn near drive a semi in the tunnel I've dug on the subject. And ain't done yet.
Bullet lube is one of the things that may be a factor in these observations. From molly to homemade bullet lubed, I believe there is an impact of these lubricants but I dont know their level of performance impact.
I either powder coat (mostly the handgun bullets) or tumble lube (mostly rifle bullets). I tumble lube with a couple of coats of the revised formula of Ben's Liquid Lube, which is 1/3 each Alox, Johnson's paste wax, and mineral sprirts. I have seen do discernable difference in accuracy, bu I think the rifle bores are cleaner with with tumble lube.
Next guy comes along and does "his thing" completely different. It's a high skill endeavor,as such... changing one tiny,seemingly insignificant process or component,can have dramatically different results.
In my experience,starting back in the mid 1970's,lube is "one" of the least important aspects. And as the speeds(and pressure,although not mutually exclusive)go up,your getting more bang for the buck on the amounts. You don't see it nearly as much in sedate(relative) handgun speeds.
In handguns,because of the slower,longer barrel time.... lube problems and nuisances actually show up.
In jacked up,let's say 22-250's,cast rigs.... the pressures here turn whatever lube there is into a vapor,and BLOWS it out the end of the barrel,IMO..well ahead of the bullet. In effect,you're grossly overlubing. I first saw it with a 30-06. Shooting a starting book load of 4350,and a conventionally lubed Lyman 175. After the second shot,I was noticing lube running out of the muzzle,haha.
Again,handguns=lower speed=lube quality.
Rifles at 2500+ = less is more.
And yes,I've tried "no lube". The problem with that is it's fine for say 5 shots but,after that it doesn't work so good,hard to explain. There's a football field amount of latitude here,something that newbs sorta don't want to hear. They want solid numbers/advice and it just isn't that easy with cast. You have to put in the time,find a game plan that YOU can live with. I use 3-1 BW-vaselatum(base vaseline sold to distributors to rebadge).
And have even found that on certain rigs; a complete emulsion isn't as effective as making it LESS,incorporated. I make a 50/50 then,"fold in" more BW. Think "crunchy" peanut butter vs smooth. It's a timed release. This is also one of the reasons I started knurling bullets. Heck,they've been knurling 22's for over a 100 years.... wonder why? Part of that is lube retention.
Intresting your observation is about exactly opposite of the process used in BP shooting. I guess the real reason I love reloading so much is the puzzles it provides. I never expect more information than allows me to create a test to verify my own conclusions. Honestly reloading is just a giant experiment we try and refine continuously. I am currently shooting traditional lubed bullets because that's what my dad had. The ones I cast are all powdercoated.
I started powder coating because my favorite revolver leaded badly with all tumble and conventionally lubed bullets and I could not fix the problem. Use powder coated and the problem is fixed. Although powder coating can be a bit tedious, I continue to do it for all handgun loads because it is less messy. I can't tell if there is any difference in accuracy.
I don't need to redo others research. I'm satisfied they are close enough
I’m not going to suggest that powder coating guarantees better accuracy. However, at present, the only two cartridges that I’ m powder coating for have exceeded my expectations!
My 45-70 Marlin GG with a 1-4 scope, which I just started loading for in September, is giving 5 shot groups at just over 1” (@ 100) using the bullet in the photos with minimal testing .....actually it was the first load tested!
My S&W 460, 8 3/8”, wearing a Burris Fastfire III (3 moa dot) with my homegrown, powder coated, 400 grain cast.....is getting 2 5/16” to 3 1/2” ( last 3 groups) @ 100 yards with 4 shots measured of the 5 fired. I have one chamber/charge hole in the cylinder, that consistently throws a shot out of the group.
While admittedly I’m working a bit harder on accuracy than in years past, it seems to be coming easier with the powder coating. I guess these situations are where the expression “ never look a gift horse in the mouth” comes from! memtb
1. Cast...even if powdercoated will get grabbed by copper or powder fouling left in your barrel.
2. When a little bit of lead is burnished into that area...every cast bullet that passes by is going to leave a little bit.
3. Keep shooting and more lead will be burnished into that area to the point of clogging the rifling.
4. When this happens, solvent cant get under it and brushes go right over it.
5. A new barrel with very few jacketed shots on it will deposit lead in a few shots and clog in less than 20 (I have proven this fact)
6. Lead deposits in small bore diameter barrels is easier to clean out than in larger ones. I think the brushes fit better and bristles stand taller on small bore brushes.
7. I have tried every solvent out there Sweets 7.62, Patch out, Hoppes 9 and the other advanced solvent...NOTHING worked better than Ballistol! Put it in and let it dry for a few days into the barrel. It still requires work but after a few cycles of that your barrel will be cleaned and conditioned to shoot cast better. I now leave a layer of Ballistol in my cast shooters and just shoot it out when I get to the range.
8. After lead is burnished into the barrel it CANNOT be shot out. It more smears down the barrel at that point.
9. Best brush for lead is the Tornado style brush.
10. As with number 5. If you have a ported pistol shoot a few hundred jacketed buttlets in it to smooth off the ports before you start using cast. Those rough areas will grab lead.
I've shot cast and jacketed in an .06 and in pistols and revolvers and never seemed to matter, but then I generally clean my guns every 50 to 100 rounds fired.
Peroxide/vinegar/warm water- Mix, plug the barrel and let the solution sit for no more than 20 minutes. Works great for light to heavy leading.
Frontier metal cleaner- cut, wrap around bore brush, scrub the dry barrel. lube will slow the scrubbing action. Tight fit is key here.
Iosso makes a paste that cleans out lead but not heavy leading. That big jug is their penetrating oil. Works ok.
Patch out is not as good as Hoppes and the No scrub lead remover cannot stay in your barrel long enough to dislodge heavy leading. I have a suspiscion that its just venegar and peroxide mixed and marked up 300%
Hoppes needs no introduction. Works second best.
Thats the Ballistol in the clear plastic bottles. They have a fine tip makes using the 32 ounce can a little easier. Worked the best of everything here. I can all but throw it all away because the Ballistol and getting the correct hardness of lead for the pressures Im shooting eliminated my leading issues.
AND last but not least. You need short cleaning rods. Most lead deposits near the chamber. Short rod makes short strokes easier.
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