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broke out my NIB lee 6 banger for 45 colt 255 gr the other day and soon had a pile of slugs ready to size. set up my star sizer with air assist and heater, chucked in my 452 die from chris smith on castboolits and after prelubing the first one proceeded to get it so stuck in die i hd to remove die and pound it out. next 2 went thru like budda. next few had to be pounded out. so...i broke out my trusty starett 798 found em coming out of mold at .4535, .4520, .4545, .4570, .4530. the .4545 was tight as hell but made it, the .4570 was a no go, the 4520, 4530, and 4535 were good. its a 50/50 ww and lead mix. the BHN is 9 (saeco 6), on my Saeco hardness tester. far as i know theres other sizes too but quit at this many. so..the obvious solution is to find which cavity (s) are the oversize ones and leave em empty OR ....?? and yes i refuse to go back to castboolts for advice. thanks
 
Posts: 1094 | Location: south of austin texas | Registered: 25 November 2011Reply With Quote
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Picture of eagle27
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quote:
Originally posted by john c.:
broke out my NIB lee 6 banger for 45 colt 255 gr the other day and soon had a pile of slugs ready to size. set up my star sizer with air assist and heater, chucked in my 452 die from chris smith on castboolits and after prelubing the first one proceeded to get it so stuck in die i hd to remove die and pound it out. next 2 went thru like budda. next few had to be pounded out. so...i broke out my trusty starett 798 found em coming out of mold at .4535, .4520, .4545, .4570, .4530. the .4545 was tight as hell but made it, the .4570 was a no go, the 4520, 4530, and 4535 were good. its a 50/50 ww and lead mix. the BHN is 9 (saeco 6), on my Saeco hardness tester. far as i know theres other sizes too but quit at this many. so..the obvious solution is to find which cavity (s) are the oversize ones and leave em empty OR ....?? and yes i refuse to go back to castboolts for advice. thanks


I only used a Lyman single cavity mould when casting .452 250gr bullets for my Webley revolver and never experienced any issues when putting them through the Lyman 450 lube sizer. Why suspect the mould, have you used your NIB 6 cavity before? If so and without the problems you are having now, I would be suspecting your lead mix and or temperature variance you may be getting when filling the mould cavities.
In summary, if you haven't had problems when casting from your NIB mould before, then look to your alloy and casting technique.

Obviously if the mould is new to you then that is a different story.
 
Posts: 2941 | Location: Nelson, New Zealand | Registered: 03 August 2009Reply With Quote
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John C--The bullets out of the mold don't seem to be the culprit. I'd guess the sizing die might not be as billed????
 
Posts: 3169 | Location: san angelo tx | Registered: 18 November 2009Reply With Quote
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well, the die is from a guy "lathsmith" on castboolits.com that has a real good reputation, but i will contact him and see what he has to say. he specializes in star dies. i degreased the mold and smoked the hell out of it before i used it. the temp is at 700 and shows no signs of being too hard, as in no "frosty" looking bullets. and they drop right out real easy, best mold i ever had for that, and i'm not WD em. i have maybe 15 molds in diff caliber, makers etc. only other time i had this problem was with 45-70 and i finally went to PC them as i couldn't get a single one thru the die. as stated, this mold was NIB before 2 days ago. the use of a lightweight alum mold really helps my wrist and hands. i also have 2 other 45 colt NIB steel molds i will try but they are 2 cavity ones. 6 at a time is better, but.....!
 
Posts: 1094 | Location: south of austin texas | Registered: 25 November 2011Reply With Quote
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eagle....this was the maiden run of the mold.
 
Posts: 1094 | Location: south of austin texas | Registered: 25 November 2011Reply With Quote
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also, if anyone is still on the boolits website and has his email addy please let me know. won't let me back on.
 
Posts: 1094 | Location: south of austin texas | Registered: 25 November 2011Reply With Quote
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well hell, i dunno. i lowered the temp to 680 according to the screen on the lyman mag 25 bottom pour (725 using a meat type thermometer made for casting) and poured 5 good bullets out of each hole, then ran em thru the sizer. all did good except for the first cavity. casted 10 out of each cavity going 2-6 w/out stopping. all ran thru sizer great. decided to chance all 6 so did a all cavity run 3 times and all 18 bullets size good. if it works, it works.
 
Posts: 1094 | Location: south of austin texas | Registered: 25 November 2011Reply With Quote
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Originally posted by john c.:
well hell, i dunno. i lowered the temp to 680 according to the screen on the lyman mag 25 bottom pour (725 using a meat type thermometer made for casting) and poured 5 good bullets out of each hole, then ran em thru the sizer. all did good except for the first cavity. casted 10 out of each cavity going 2-6 w/out stopping. all ran thru sizer great. decided to chance all 6 so did a all cavity run 3 times and all 18 bullets size good. if it works, it works.


I did suspect it was more likely to do with temperature, alloy, and or technique rather than mould fault, or at least they were the things to fiddle with first, but good to hear things are working better for you now.
Casting can throw curve balls occasionally.
 
Posts: 2941 | Location: Nelson, New Zealand | Registered: 03 August 2009Reply With Quote
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b4 we moved i had the star set up with a bullet feeder and a tray under it to catch em mounted to bench. i'd fill the tube full and crank out sized/lubed keith 44s so fast i'd fill a 30 cal ammo can in no time. 50 cal can was too heavy. setting up again, i've lost the under bench tray, my stirring spoon, god knows what else. but i'm up and running again so i'll take it!
 
Posts: 1094 | Location: south of austin texas | Registered: 25 November 2011Reply With Quote
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John what alloy are you using? I agree not WD'ing them as you don't need to for 45 Colt. Do you have any of the dimensions on your cylinder throats and groove diameters?

With a new sizing die I always put lube on the first bullet so the die gets lube as they do need it when new. After you started you're fine.

That mould sure throws some wide variance in diameters. You could separate the bullets by diameters, a pain I know, but still makes them useful. Kind of defeats the purpose of having a six cavity mould and not casting all the cavities.
 
Posts: 662 | Registered: 15 May 2018Reply With Quote
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if u read the above posts u will see i did everything you suggested
 
Posts: 1094 | Location: south of austin texas | Registered: 25 November 2011Reply With Quote
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Originally posted by john c.:
if u read the above posts u will see i did everything you suggested


Some of it I was telling you what I do. I don't see anywhere above where you mentioned the cylinder throat diameter or the groove diameter.
 
Posts: 662 | Registered: 15 May 2018Reply With Quote
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because not relevant to the problem of the bullets being run thru a sizing die. whole diff topic
 
Posts: 1094 | Location: south of austin texas | Registered: 25 November 2011Reply With Quote
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the die maker, lathesmith, did suggest in lieu of prelubing the first bullet thru a new die to coat it with flitz FWIW
 
Posts: 1094 | Location: south of austin texas | Registered: 25 November 2011Reply With Quote
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A lot of times it takes a few heat cycles to get a mold running well.
I heat my new molds on a hot plate with a temp probe in one cavity. Heat to 250 dress or so, let cool, repeat two or three time before I try casting.
Leo


The only way to know if you can do a thing is to do it.
 
Posts: 298 | Location: Lebanon NY | Registered: 08 February 2010Reply With Quote
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Your not getting then mold closed all the way. Each and every time.

Slow down your casting rate and make sure the mold is closed tight each time

I have seen it happen with my lee six cavity molds
 
Posts: 16539 | Location: wis | Registered: 21 April 2001Reply With Quote
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Originally posted by john c.:
because not relevant to the problem of the bullets being run thru a sizing die. whole diff topic


Well it can be a problem if you're not sure of what size your sizing die is really sizing them down too and you may be sizing them down too much in one step.
 
Posts: 662 | Registered: 15 May 2018Reply With Quote
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On those diameter figures you gave us on the cast bullets can you tell us where the larger size came from the mould? Were they in the center or were that end or each ends?
 
Posts: 662 | Registered: 15 May 2018Reply With Quote
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Originally posted by p dog shooter:
Your not getting then mold closed all the way. Each and every time.

Slow down your casting rate and make sure the mold is closed tight each time

I have seen it happen with my lee six cavity molds


I can agree with this. It's important to keep a precise cadence to insure the consistency of the bullets. I wonder to did he hold the mould up to a light when it was closed and see any light through the halves.
 
Posts: 662 | Registered: 15 May 2018Reply With Quote
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Originally posted by p dog shooter:
Your not getting then mold closed all the way. Each and every time.

Slow down your casting rate and make sure the mold is closed tight each time

I have seen it happen with my lee six cavity molds

i think this was more the problem than anything else. been over a year since i casted and its back to basics after 49 years of it.
 
Posts: 1094 | Location: south of austin texas | Registered: 25 November 2011Reply With Quote
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If I were to venture a guess, because your using wheel weights, that you have zinc contaminated mix.

I'd cast a few, as pure lead, and see what your results are.

I ran into this a few years ago and don't use wheel weights anymore as a result. too many, especially if they come from imports, use a lot of zinc in their wheel weights.


NRA Benefactor.

Life is tough... It's even tougher when you're stupid... John Wayne
 
Posts: 1789 | Location: The Three Lower Counties (Delaware USA) | Registered: 13 September 2001Reply With Quote
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naw, i doubt it. all my zinkers float to the top and i chuck em. in any case the problems solved. i'm holding the handles a lot tighter and its throwing good bullets. also, the ingots i am using come from an bunch of maybe 500 i have been using for a few years with 8-10 diff molds w/no problems. i had surgery on my thumb a coupla years ago and it doesn't work as good as b4 so holding the handles tight is a chore.
 
Posts: 1094 | Location: south of austin texas | Registered: 25 November 2011Reply With Quote
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John C.
Every decade or so I give Lee molds a try again. I have to say Lee is consistent from my first Lee mold from the 70s to five years ago. I take the mold out of the box and get beautiful bullets. In the next casting session, I can't get a usable bullet ever again. I don't have the same problem with NEI, Saeco, RCBS, Lyman, Mountain Molds. The usable molds are made from iron, brass, aluminum. For me,
it's an example you get exactly what you pay for


"Whensoever the General Government assumes undelegated powers, its acts are unauthoritative, void, and of no force." --Thomas Jefferson

 
Posts: 5788 | Location: Richmond, Virginia | Registered: 17 September 2000Reply With Quote
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my experience was exactly opposite. the first session threw weird bullets, the next 2 sessions have been great. even with a 7 and 9 yr old "helping". the mostly have NOE molds. the aluminum ones are light and easier on my hands.
 
Posts: 1094 | Location: south of austin texas | Registered: 25 November 2011Reply With Quote
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quote:
Originally posted by john c.:
naw, i doubt it. all my zinkers float to the top and i chuck em. in any case the problems solved. i'm holding the handles a lot tighter and its throwing good bullets. also, the ingots i am using come from an bunch of maybe 500 i have been using for a few years with 8-10 diff molds w/no problems. i had surgery on my thumb a coupla years ago and it doesn't work as good as b4 so holding the handles tight is a chore.


I know some guy that I saw on a forum somewhere that was really concerned about closing the mould halves tight that he fabricated handled using Vic Grips. No I'm not advocating that to you, just saying what some folks do. Can you imagine how slow that would be to cast that way?
 
Posts: 662 | Registered: 15 May 2018Reply With Quote
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had me going for a minute. vic grips = vice grips.
gotcha. yes, thats really over kill. i just put on a thick pair of gloves to pad my thumb and all is well.
 
Posts: 1094 | Location: south of austin texas | Registered: 25 November 2011Reply With Quote
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One of the good features my Hoch nose pour mould is the 'locking' pin that engages in the top plate of the hinged top and bottom plates locking the mould halves together so even if the handles are not clamped tight by hand the pin does this.





 
Posts: 2941 | Location: Nelson, New Zealand | Registered: 03 August 2009Reply With Quote
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quote:
Originally posted by arkypete:
John C.
Every decade or so I give Lee molds a try again. I have to say Lee is consistent from my first Lee mold from the 70s to five years ago. I take the mold out of the box and get beautiful bullets. In the next casting session, I can't get a usable bullet ever again. I don't have the same problem with NEI, Saeco, RCBS, Lyman, Mountain Molds. The usable molds are made from iron, brass, aluminum. For me,
it's an example you get exactly what you pay for


Sounds like a personal problem
 
Posts: 16539 | Location: wis | Registered: 21 April 2001Reply With Quote
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