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Old October 4, 1999, 12:57 PM   #1
Jack Straw
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Join Date: July 26, 1999
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Kent's question on water quenching brought up a question that I have yet to find an answer for: Where can I find linotype? I've been working on heavy 44mag loads and it would be nice to have an alloy that is already hard, doesn't need water quenching, and stays hard even when run through a sizer die. Or I could just go with a gas check bullet...Is the RCBS 245swc-gc the same as their 250Keith, just rebated to carry a gas check?

Jack
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Old October 4, 1999, 08:57 PM   #2
TEXAS LAWMAN
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Linotype is generally available from custom alloy sellers. I have not been able to find any at print/newspaper shops in over 20 years. In my opinion, linotype is harder than necessary for most handgun bullets but is fine without heat-treating for rifles. Have no info on the RCBS molds.
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Old October 5, 1999, 01:47 PM   #3
Paul B.
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Jack. The two bullets you are asking about appear to be the same, with the exception of the rebate for gas checks. I have the gas check version, and I like it quite well.
Looking for a source of linotype I would suggest the supplier closest to you. Shipping costs can eat you out of house and home. I am lucky, as my supplier is only 50 miles away, and I can go and pick it up myself.
The closest supplier i could locate to you is in Louisiana. In the Jan-Feb. 1999 issue of THE CAST BULLET, he had an ad for Linotype, 50 pounds $25.00. That's a damn good price.
Data is as follows. Robert Green
290 Russell Road
Stonewall, LA 71078
Ph: (318) 925-6734
He hasn't had an ad since then, but it might be worth the price of a phone call to find out if any is left.
An alternative, if you want harder bullets, is to heat treat wheel weight metal. I posted instructions on another thread. This will give you bullets even harder than linotype. Lino here runs about $1.50 a pound. I use it to put a bit more tin into wheel weight metal for easier castability. It is a good handgun alloy as is, and when heat treated is great in rifle bullets. I can duplicate factory 30-30 with thisd metal, including accuracy, and terminal effects are exactly as factory bullets. In fact, when I use my 30-30 for hunting, all I use are cast bullets. I have about 8 boxes of factory ammo that have sat on the shelf for years. I suppose I'll shoot it up someday for the brass. LOL Come to think of it, my son-in-law just gave me 5 new boxes of Winchester 170 gr. ammo.
If that guy Green is out of lino, let me know and I'll give you the address of my supplier. Shipping charges from Arizona won't be cheap though. He does have cleaned wheel weights for about $.50 a pound, which is cheap as hell around here.
Paul B.
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Old October 5, 1999, 08:02 PM   #4
Bill M
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I tried calling Robert Green about a week ago...no dice. The lady answering the phone said he was out of linotype. She did, however take down my name and phone number saying he'd call if he got any more in. Sounds "iffy".
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Old October 6, 1999, 08:13 AM   #5
Jack Straw
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Paul,

I would have called Mr. Green, but Bill M. just talked me out of it . Thanks for the lead though; I'll keep that number handy in case I can't find anything closer to the metro Atlanta area. I've been using a borrowed mold for the 250K bullet, but have been getting some pretty bad leading, so now I am considering getting the gas check version for hot 44 loads and just leaving the gas check off for plinking.

As for using the linotype, I just thought it would be easier to cast without dropping into water. My current alloy is 8lbs. WW + 2oz of tin (lead free solder:95%tin, 5%antimony) and if my math is correct (a big "if") my alloy breaks down to 94%lead, 2%tin, and 4%antimony. I guess the big "if" comes from whether or not the Lyman manual is correct in it's assumption that WW are .5% tin -- otherwise I might need more tin. Whaddya think about the makeup of WW - is Lyman correct or is their info to be taken as a very loose rule of thumb?

BTW, Buffalo Arms sells pure tin at $7\lb.; are there any better prices out there that I should check into?


Jack

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Old October 7, 1999, 10:50 PM   #6
Paul B.
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Jack. Sorry Mr. Green did not work out.
I haven't been too fond of the dropping in the bucket of water route. If your bullet is anywhere near oversize, and you have to size it down, then you will wipe out most, or even maybe all of the hardening effect.
I passed on my method of heat treating in another thread, which seems to me to be the best way of doing it. Simply cast your bullets. Size them to whatever diameter works for you. Place the bullets on a tray or basket of some kind and bake them in the over at 450 degrees. I arbtrarily went to that temperature when I first started heat treating. It worked, so I never went any further on adjusting the heat. After the bullets have "cooked" for at least one hour, pull them out of the oven and as rapidly as possible dump them into a bucket of water. I cannot emphasize this enough, "as rapidly as possible." As soon as you opened the oven door, the bullets started to cool. You want them as hot as possible when quenching them. Take them out of the water and spread them out on an old towel. After 24 to 48 hours they will be quite hard. You can then lube them with a sizing die .001 to .002 larger than the diameter you originally sized them.
Some helpful hints. Get a bag of magnum shot. This stuff has a high antimony content. Add about a cupful to your melt. This will increase the hardness level when you heat treat. The best way to drop the bullets into the water, is with a basket made from screen material with about a one quarter inch mesh. Make the basket about 5 or 6 inches square with an edge about one half to three quarters of an inch high. Make the handle from baling wire fastened at each corner. With this basket, you just place the whole package into the water. Those bullets are quite soft after being in the over, and there is less danger of damaging them when quenching.
My source of metal is:Bill Ferguson
P.O. Box 1238
Sierra Vista, AZ 85636
Ph: (520) 458-5321
I don't know if he has linotype, but you can ask.
Hope this helps.

Paul B.

[This message has been edited by Paul B. (edited October 08, 1999).]
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Old October 11, 1999, 09:31 AM   #7
Jack Straw
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Paul,

I had a few questions to come to mind when I read this. First of all, if the bullets don't reach full hardness for 24 -48 hours, how would the bullets be affected if they were sized and lubed in one step just after the water quenching (making sure they are dry of course)? Would they still harden to the same degree if sized while still relatively soft, or would sizing as such still negate the heat treatment? My curiousity just got to me on this one.

Also, why is it necessary to use a larger die to lube the bullets after treating them? Does treating affect the diameter, or is it merely a precaution to make sure the sides of the bullet are not touched (and therefore softened) by the die? I size my 44's to .430 and was just wondering if it is really necessary to buy a .431 die just for lubing. Of course, I could use my Lee sizer to size them at .429 and then lube at .430, couldn't I?

One more question. I have been using Lyman's numbers which state that wheel weights are approxiamately .5% tin. By my figuring, 2oz tin added to 8lb of WW yields a formula of about 94%Pb, 2%Sn, and 4% antimony. Is this correct or was my figuring flawed?

Jack

Upon re-reading this whole string, I see that I asked that last question in the initial posting...sorry bout that!

[This message has been edited by Jack Straw (edited October 11, 1999).]

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Old October 11, 1999, 12:30 PM   #8
Paul B.
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Jack. To answer your last question first, mathematically, I'm a dumb-dumb, but I think your figures are right. You need just enought tin to make your castings fill out. Any more is a waste.
You use the larger sizing die so that the sides of the treated bullets are not touched.
I guess this goes along with your first question. To be perfectly honest, I don't know. I have never tried it. I just do it the way I do, because that's what the instructions said to do.
There is an article on (www.sixgunner.com) by a Paco Kelly on hunting and stuff with cast lead. Try(www.sixgunner.com/paco/favorite.htm) It's a real interesting read. I guess, according to him, I should throw out my almost 300 pounds of wheel weight metal and use his alloy. He water quenches by dropping directly from the mold into the water. He later lubes and sizes in one operation with no apparent problems. Frankly, water anywhere near molten lead scares hell out of me. I know what happens when even teeny-tiny drops of moisture hit lead from firsthand experience.
I did try his method, but I got erratic reading with an LBT lead tester. The hardness varied by too many points to suit me. With the method I use, there is little variation in hardness between individual bullets.
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Old October 11, 1999, 12:39 PM   #9
Jack Straw
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Paul,

I think I'm going to try your method; I can see where it might be more consistent. Besides, where reloading is concerned, it's never a bad idea to simply follow the instructions!!

I'll go check out Paco's column right now.

Thanks for answering all these questions; I hope you can tolerate one more. I have definitely decided on the gas check bullet -- is a very hard bullet still desirable in this case or would I be just as well off to skip the hardening steps and stick on the gas check?

Again, many thanks!!!

Jack
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Old October 12, 1999, 03:37 PM   #10
Paul B.
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Jack. I use both, but prefer the gas check as it prevents gas cutting, which can occur with plain base bullets. I use the plain base for mild target loads without heat treating, and the gas check bullets for the super-dooper rompin'-stomping dinosaur detroyer loads.
Hey, glad I could help.
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Old October 13, 1999, 06:01 PM   #11
Yodar
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Re: Linotype:
For my pistol work, and outdoor range rifle use a gas checked WheelWeightMetal rifle bullet works fine alone, however one of my bullets for rifle use Lyman 311410) is not gas checked and I wanted to get it up to 6& Sb. When Lino became unavailable I found an East Coast dealer (G.A.R.( 509 McBride Ave....W.Paterson N.J. 07424
(201 754 1114) offerred "enrichment metal 30% Sb 15% Sn 55% Pb at about a buck a pound-price varies-and shipping aint cheap for LEAD -but check him out...send him a buck for his catalog, as his Saeco line of moulds
is pretty complete

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