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Old January 13, 2007, 10:41 PM   #1
Ohio Rusty
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Homemade bullet lube

Came across a blurb on the 'net today about an easy bullet lube to make at home. Equal parts of Moly lube and Beeswax, then coat your bullets. I have the beeswax, but what is Moly Lube? Is that the thick axel grease in the can you use on your car? I'm just starting into reloading, and anyplace I can save money or make it myself, I'll do that.
I already have the casting gear as I make muzzleloading ball for myself and friends. Thanx in advance for your help.
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Old January 13, 2007, 11:11 PM   #2
cloudcroft
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I wouldn't try to make your own bullet-lube just to save money...you won't save that much but you'll still have something of questionable performance. Besides, why try to reinvent the wheel?

Just buy some commercially-made bullet-lube and be done with it...save your penny-pinching -- although somewhat admirable in theory -- for some other area of reloading where it really WILL make a difference and savings.

-- John D.
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Old January 13, 2007, 11:12 PM   #3
cheygriz
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Moly lube is a powder. A lot of folks tumble bullets in it to make them slicker.

Be advised that there are as many different recipes for homemade bullet lube as there are bullet casters
Go to www.castboolits.gunloads.com
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Old January 14, 2007, 09:28 AM   #4
HSMITH
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Search the net for 'felix lube cast bullet'. It is a home made bullet lube that out performs all but maybe one commercial cast bullet lube. It is DRASTICALLY better than the typical hard lube you get on commercial cast bullets, WORLDS better. It also won't put Moly in your gun.

Bullet lube is one place where you can make a BIG difference in performance over what you can buy, and it doesn't cost much money. In fact, it is a good bit cheaper than bullet lube that doesn't work half as well.

The only commercial lube I will say good things about is LBT Blue.
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Old January 14, 2007, 01:42 PM   #5
WIN71
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It's not worth it

I don't think I would fool with this. I am not familiar with the article you are referring too. I assume you would have to heat the bees wax to melting and mix in the "molylube", whatever that is. Then pour into some type mold so it would fit in your lube-sizing press.

They must be refering to a grease with molybdenum disulfide mixed in. I doubt the recipe calls for dry pure molybdenum disulfide to be mixed in equal parts with beeswax. That would require a large amount and the only place I know of to buy it is some major chemical sales outlet.

Therefore you are probably correct in assuming they are talking about "axle" grease that has molybdenum disulfide already mixed in.

I think if you just buy a good bullet lube, like LBT Blue, you will be way ahead.
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Old January 14, 2007, 01:45 PM   #6
snuffy
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"Felix Lube formula

2 Tablespoons mineral oil
1 Tablespoon castor oil
1 Tablespoon Ivory, or homemade soap (grated)
1 Tablespoon Lanolin
Beeswax - Piece approximately 3 1/2" X 3 1/2" X 1 "

Heat mineral (baby) oil until it starts to smoke.

Add castor oil, and stir continuously for 1/2 hour.

Sliver the soap, and stir into the mixture a little at a time, until melted.

Add the beeswax before the lanolin, and then when that is melted, reduce or remove the heat and add the lanolin, thus not running any risk of burning or scorching the lanolin.

1 teaspoon of carnuba wax can be added to give a shiny bore. This can be found on the seal of Makers Mark whiskey, or the red wax on cheese from the supermarket.

Once made, let cool. This can be remelted in a microwave, and poured into the lubrisizer."


Sounds like a lot too much work, to say nothing about the high chance of a fire!

I'll just stick with the lee alox lube, it just plain works!
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Old January 14, 2007, 06:50 PM   #7
cheygriz
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HSMITH,

There are reams of information about the so-called "Felix Lube" and how to mkae it on castboolits forum. The only problem I see with it is that it's so soft. Probably great for rifle bullets that are loaded one round at a time, but definitely not for handgun rounds loaded on progressives.

I agree with you on LBT Blue, but I have used Rooster Laboratories "Zambini Red" with results just as good as the LBT Blue.

Try it, you'll like it.
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Old January 14, 2007, 07:42 PM   #8
Edward429451
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I made some felix lube. It was a little on the soft side for my liking so I easily hardened it up with the addition of some extra beeswax. Seems fine and at least as good as anything else I've tried.

Sounds too complicated? Ok it does, I'll give you that, it did to me too. That was before I actually made a batch though! What I found out after completing a batch is that while it "sounds complicated", it's really no more complicated than making an omlette. Can ya cook an omlette?

Sometimes people get on the net and over talk/anaylise things and I believe FWFL is one of those instances. It really is easy to do and is low impact on her kitchen. The soap doesn't smell THAT bad. I did subsitute extra virgin olive oil for the castor oil, so did not have to stir for 1/2 hour.

The most difficulty I had was gathering ingrediants. I'm totally stocked now though.
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Old January 14, 2007, 09:23 PM   #9
Ohio Rusty
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Thanx all for the replies and the help !! I found a couple of tubes if T/C Bore Butter for muzzleloaders I had put away. That bore butter, mixed maybe 50/50 with beeswax ought to make an excellent bullet lube..... plenty stiff yet will hold well in the lube rings of the bullet. Being it's all natural, it won't cause any corrosion problems in the gun.
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Old January 14, 2007, 11:43 PM   #10
cloudcroft
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"Ought to make?"

That's still guesswork, unlike the companies that make this stuff for a living.

But they're your guns and it's your choice,

-- John D.
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Old January 15, 2007, 09:05 AM   #11
jsflagstad
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Lee Alox

I have had good results with the Lee Alox, but it can be a bit messy if you don't thin it down with some mineral spirits though.

JSF
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Old January 15, 2007, 11:22 AM   #12
HSMITH
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cheygriz, I have loaded tens upon tens of thousands of rounds of felix lube bullets on my 550's. It is a little messy, but not nearly as messy in the dies as Lee Liquid Alox.

I modified the mix early on, I used about 35% Mobil 1 synthetic grease and about a tablespoon of pure carnuba wax. It was really really soft, so I hardened it with parafin wax to the consistency of LBT Blue. The results were amazing, bores shine like brand new after several thousand rounds. The downside is the grease makes the gun slick after a couple hundred rounds, more so than with a normal soft lube. A quick wipe with a towel and all is well again. I shot over 20K rounds with a M19 without any cleaning at all other than a quick brush through the chambers and wiping down the exterior, no leading at ALL in the bore or cylinder.

Red Zambini works OK with VERY hard bullets and higher pressures for me. I wasn't impressed with it, but I only loaded one tube.

For all the people that don't think this is a good idea or woth the effort: Did you know most commercial lube is just parafin wax with a little dye in it? You hear all the complaints about lead bullets and barrel fouling, cleaning nightmares, poor performance and all of that. I assume this is the cause of your negative opinion in regards to lead bullets and home made lubes. I shoot thousands and thousands of lead bullets with NO leading, cleaning takes just minutes, accuracy is fantastic, and ammo costs are just a couple cents per round. That is hard to argue with. You can make bullet lube at home for just a few dollars that is worlds better than what you get on your commercial cast bullets.
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Old January 15, 2007, 11:52 AM   #13
Edward429451
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+1 to HSmith, this man obviously knows of which he speaks. Read his posts again. I am certainly not as experianced as he is, but my more limited experiances are taking me down the same path of what he speaks.

My understanding is that most leading problems are due to bullet sizing deficiencies, and not lube anyway. As I understand it, if your leading is near the breech...sizing problem for sure, if leading is near muzzle...then it could possibly be a lube deficiency in which case the lube formula could be tweaked (or it could also indicate a rough bore?) Perhaps HSmith could expound a little about these issues?

The good thing is that FWFL formula can be easily tweaked and is not carved in stone. This most certainly is not rocket science guys.
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Old January 15, 2007, 06:13 PM   #14
HSMITH
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Thanks for the vote of confidence Edward.

Sizing is one of the most critical features of a lead bullet. It is vastly more imortant than bullet hardness for instance. But, if the bullet is of the right hardness for the pressure and sized perfectly it still needs good lubricant or it will lead the barrel and cylinder. It will lead as bad as a bullet that is .001" undersized or one that is way too soft.

Bullet lube is misunderstood by many. The lube is actually pushed out of the groove by the gas pressure behind the bullet. Some gas will pass the base of the bullet and pressurize the lube ring/s, this gas forces the bullet lube to press against the barrel and it is basically smeared onto the bore as the bullet passes down the barrel. The residue from this bullet will lube the front portion of the next bullet to pass.

Leading in the forcing cone and early in the bore can be attributed to lube issues as well as sizing. Many of the commercial cast bullets have a VERY hard lube with a high melting point to make sure the bullets have full rings when they get to the consumer and aren't sticking together. Something like that would outrage the average consumer, little does he know that the performance would probably be a lot better with bullets sticking together and some of the rings not filled. Anyway, the super hard lubes won't flow lube nearly as fast or as early in firing when compared to a bullet with a softer lube. It takes pressure and heat to get a lot of the commercial lubes to flow, and until it does flow there is nothing to prevent the leading. You can do everything right and still have horribly leaded bores and cylinders. Couple this with commercial cast bullets that are extremely hard and things get worse.

Leading at the muzzle end of the barrel is often times a lack of lube. If the lube is too soft or the bullet rings don't contain enough lube to sustain flow for the length of the barrel it will lead at the muzzle end. I ran into this most recently with a 10" 44 mag shooting 429421's using my super duper home made lube, in the end the lube was soft enough and flowing well enough that the bullet didn't contain enough to lube the full 10" of barrel. In 4, 6, and 8 3/8" guns it was never an issue. I hardened the lube just slightly and all problems disappeared. That gun with commercial cast bullets was an absolute nightmare, 20 rounds and the leading was so bad it wouldn't group at all.

Hope this helps.
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