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Lead bullets, which to use

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Jhamblen86, Sep 27, 2012.

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  1. Jhamblen86

    Jhamblen86 Member

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    I have just gotten into reloading 44 magnum. Once I realized I should be using lead bullets instead of jacketed, even though I don't have too. I'm not sure who to go with. I did order some Oregon trail 240gr swc. Any thoughts and feed back on this company or others would be a big help
     
  2. SlowFuse

    SlowFuse Member

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    For larger calibers I have been using beartooth bullets with success (on paper). For everything smaller than 40 I have been using Missouri Bullet Co.

    No reason for the seperate companies. My logic is that beartooth makes a quality bullet, and in the larger calibers I'm willing to pay a little extra. No qualms however with Missouri. Great product also.

    Another that has been suggested to me from a friend is Rim Rock. I haven't tried them, but have heard good things.

    Any reason for wanting to load lead? Is cost the main factor?
     
  3. blarby

    blarby Member

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    Every bullet casting company has their share of fanatics, and detractors.

    When I was buying them, I used Mo bullet. They ship fast, the product is good, and they offered ( not sure if they still do, or not) a THR discount.

    I also trade them (cast bullets) , see below...

    Hardest thing, for me, about buying from a big casting outfit is you might end up with 500 ish bullets you dont like- for whatever reason. For that reason alone, if I were you, i'd do my research ( just like you are doing now- thats some quality stuff you got betwixt those ears ! ) before buying ! FWIW- if you end up with Mo bullets you don't like- most of the folks here will trade them away from ya pretty fast... there is a hard-core following of MO BULLET fans here- and I was among them when I bought cast bullets.

    If you are going to be shooting for any length of time- you might want to make the very modest investment to start casting... it pays for itself pretty quickly.
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2012
  4. Jhamblen86

    Jhamblen86 Member

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    The main purpose I want to reload lead is $$$. The more cash I save the more I get to shoot. Actually I'm shooting twice as much and spending the same. But the wife sees it as half cost because of the price per shot. Also, I heard lead bullets put less wear on your barrel.

    I have done some research on Mo bullets but all I found was the common semi-auto calibers. Nothing for a wheel gun. Unless I'm mistaken and over looked them.
     
  5. blarby

    blarby Member

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  6. FROGO207

    FROGO207 Member

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    Yep for good lead bullets and great prices Missouri Bullet delivers all around IMHO. I have used Beartooth, Hunters Supply, Laser Cast, and Zcast. All work well and all are reasonably priced IMHO. I go to MO bullet for the fast service for the most part but you may have to get them through another distributor if they are busy.
     
  7. gspn

    gspn Member

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    I buy all my lead from Missouri Bullet Co. I shoot lead mainly in .41 and .44 mag and I've been through a few thousand of their bullets with no problems. Great company, great service.
     
  8. ljnowell

    ljnowell Member

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    Another vote for Missouri Bullet. I wont buy lead anywhere else.
     
  9. Jhamblen86

    Jhamblen86 Member

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    Ok, I think y'all have convinced me lol. With that said, at how many fps do you start to see them leading the barrel?
     
  10. ljnowell

    ljnowell Member

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    Too many variables. Depends on the exact gun being used, powder type, bullet fit, etc.

    I see you are just down the road from me. I live in Litchfield, I know a few people there in GC.
     
  11. Jhamblen86

    Jhamblen86 Member

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    You wouldn't happen to know any of the Hamblens from jerseyville?
     
  12. Hootus

    Hootus Member

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    I've had great success and service from Penn Bullets and they make great lead bullets in most calibers. I've loaded 500 of their .44 mag bullets and they work just fine.
     
  13. ljnowell

    ljnowell Member

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    I sure dont. The only people I know from that area are the mathenia's in Carollton.
     
  14. KansasSasquatch

    KansasSasquatch Member

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    I've only used Missouri Bullets in .45 and .38 when it comes to lead but I have had nothing but good using them. I don't think you can find anything cheaper unless you cast your own. MO Bullets are made pretty much right there where the lead is mined out of the ground, no shipping that heavy stuff around to be processed.
     
  15. Jhamblen86

    Jhamblen86 Member

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    Would it be wise to test a couple different suppliers or pick a brand and stick with them?
     
  16. blarby

    blarby Member

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    It can start at about as low as 300, and go from there.

    Leading in bores has a multitude of nefarious origins :

    Incorrect slug size.

    Too hot of a powder charge.

    Incorrect hardness for application.

    Forcing cone irregularities.

    Improper bullet seating techniques.

    Pre-existing bore obstructions.

    Pre-existing bore irregularities.

    Improper bullet lubrication amount.

    Improper bullet lubrication type.

    Nearly limitless Combinations of all of the above.

    In the application it would appear you intend to use them( targets), a bullet of anywhere between 16 and 18 BHN , driven under 1400 fps, given proper bullet fitment to both bore and forcing cone, should produce minimal to no leading.

    In my .44 magnum, a 240g tumble lube bullet of 16-18 BHN on top of 10 grs of unique is excitingly accurate, and produces little to no leading.

    That same bullet on top of 23 grs of h-110 produces noticeable leading for the first 1 inch or so of the bore. With that said, I can shoot 4-5 cylinders of this load in succession, at ranges of 15-30 feet, before any appreciable loss in accuracy occurs. At that point, its probably my hand- not the leading.

    In any event, 2 or 3 jacketed or gas-checked rounds after each lead firing session removes the lead from my bore, and that of many others that I have tried, completely.

    Why I am awake at this time to answer this question however, is another matter entirely.
     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2012
  17. noylj

    noylj Member

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    lead bullet:
    What is the diameter of the throats in your cylinder? The bullets should be a Tight slip fit. Some guns don't mind bullets slightly larger than the throat diameter and larger is better than smaller. Last thing you want is a gap where hot gasses will go shooting past the bullet and erode it.
    Then, most guns want a lead bullet that is at least 0.001" over the barrel groove diameter (you need to slug your barrel and determine what the groove diameter is).
    Many people buy lead bullets that are too hard for the pressure and velocities they are using and don't understand why they get leading.
    In my .44s, I have cast my bullets from what is close to Lyman #2 (90% lead and 5% each tin and antimony). I aim for a BHN of 12-15.
    As far as ordering bullets, many companies will send you evaluation packs.
    I like mastercastbullets.com and Missouri Bullets, but I get "personal" service from master cast.
    Find out the important dimensions of your gun, discuss it with the company, describe what you are loading for (target, general fun, hunting) as each type of activity will limit the bullet choices. If you are just having fun, you don't need to spend the money on heavy, large flat meplat, bullets like Leadhead Bullets. If you want to shoot targets and like to shoot a lot, you will be best served with a lighter (200-240gn) bullet, probably of SWC style and possibly a softer bullet for lighter target loads. A good choice here is to look for "Cowboy" bullets as they are made for light loads and quick shooting.
    If you want to load max, you may have to buy bullets with gas checks (I never had, but I never tried to "push the envelope" either).
    Mastercastbullets.com offers a 20BHN 0.430" 240gn L-SWC for $92.57/1000.
    Missouri Bullets offers an 18BHN .430" 240gn L-SWC for $93/1000.
    Penn Bullets offers a 0.431" 240gn L-SWC for $105/1000 and will size them to 0.429, 0.430, or 0.432" if requested.
    There is nothing wrong with jacketed bullets, other than the cost.
    Montana Gold offers a 240gn JSP of $333/1950 or $171/1000--a stiff increase in price, but the bullet is GREAT and is a "no-brainer"--no leading and pleasure to load and shoot, but it costs...
     
  18. Jhamblen86

    Jhamblen86 Member

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    Thank you, I will check my bore diameter. Never thought to do that.
     
  19. Jhamblen86

    Jhamblen86 Member

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    Is it true lead bullets wear on your bore less than jacketed bullets? I had heard this and it's one of the reasons I'm going to lead bullets.
     
  20. Kyle M.

    Kyle M. Member

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  21. homatok

    homatok Member

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    Quote from above "In the application it would appear you intend to use them( targets), a bullet of anywhere between 16 and 18 BHN , driven under 1400 fps, given proper bullet fitment to both bore and forcing cone, should produce minimal to no leading."----

    If the bullet to firearm "fit" is correct! With cast, "fit is king". You need to slug your barrel (auto) or slug your barrel (both ends) and slug the throats (revolver). If the throats on a revolver are smaller than the maximum bore diameter, you WILL get leading! The reason for slugging both ends of a revolver barrel is due to the possibility of a constriction where the barrel screws into the frame.
     
  22. jerryd

    jerryd Member

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    Lead Bullets

    Check out Magnus bullets, i use them in my 45, 10mm, and just tried their 255gr semi wad cutter in 44cal.
     
  23. ljnowell

    ljnowell Member

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    My advice would be to try the Missouri Bullets and see what result you get. I played around with a lot of different ones and settled on those. Plus, being a fellow Illinoisan you have a benefit, shipping is lightening fast from Missouri Bullet to us. Missouri Bullet ships fast to everyone, no doubt, but here in Illinois its like next day service most of the time. I actually ordered on a monday morning and got them tuesday afternoon once. Amazing.
     
  24. gspn

    gspn Member

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    Here is an article on lead hardness from the MO bullet website...it does a good job explaining it. I push my 41's and 44's from light loads to full magnum velocities and I've never had a problem with leading.

    http://www.missouribullet.com/technical.php
     
  25. Hondo 60
    • Contributing Member

    Hondo 60 Member

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    Nudder vote for Missouri Bullet Co.
    Great folks, very fast shipping, large assortment of bullets & personal attention.
    And they still have a discount for thr members - just search this site for the coupon code.

    I've asked for & rec'd a small sample (when I placed another order).
    So you might try to get just a few to see if they like your gun.

    Here's a link to their 44 Special/Magnum page.
    Just be sure to select a bullet with a BHN of 18 for magnum velocities.

    http://www.missouribullet.com/results.php?category=5&secondary=12
     
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