I've been waiting on bullet molds to show up, so I could cast some cores.
The molds arrived last week, and I did get some experimental cores cast. But, I didn't cast enough for a full batch of bullets.
Next time I crank up the casting furnace, I'll punch out a few hundred cores. (.401" 175 gr TC, and .410" 195 gr SWC) Then, I'll be able to do some proper accuracy testing.
In the mean time, I made a new ejector rod out of .295" polished O-1 drill rod, and have been experimenting with case lengths and die adjustments for various different results (taking notes for HPs, SPs, protected points, etc).
I'm juggling quite a few projects right now. Once I get my new reloading bench done, I promise
I'll post a video of the process.
The one thing I have definitively decided is: Wheel Weight alloy is not appropriate for this application. It's too hard on the press. I'm sticking to alloys of 5-8 BHN, from here on out.
Are you bonding the core to the jacket?
Some of the test bullets were bonded; some weren't. (The ones in the photos are labeled as bonded, if applicable.)
In the future, I'll probably bond everything going in the .444 Marlin, but not the bullets for the .44 Mags.
The initial tests used bullets that were bonded with paste flux, but I plan to upgrade to Corbins Core Bond in the future. (The cost and results are almost identical, compared to cheap flux (or liquid flux), but the Core Bond is designed for the application.)