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Old April 9, 2009, 10:27 PM   #1
webby4x4
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.45ACP Bullet mold - what do you like the best?

I currently have a 2 cavity mold to make all of my .45 ACP rounds, which is a 200 gr, semi-wad cutter with 2 grooves. It's this model:
http://www.lymanproducts.com/lyman/b...php?entryID=27

I'm looking to step up to a 6 cavity mold and I already have a few of the Lee 6 cavity aluminum molds for other calibers and I like them a lot.

For my Colt 1911 Govt .45 however, I'm looking for solid range accuracy out to 25 yards, and something that will load VERY well. I am going to get involved with IDPA, so the ability to feed the rounds quickly is a must.


Anyone have suggestions on the style of bullet on a Lee 6-gang mold for my 45ACP?

I was looking at the standard military ball round style:
http://www.midwayusa.com/viewProduct...tNumber=313971

But I was also looking at 200 gr semi-wad cutter with tumble-lube grooves:
http://www.midwayusa.com/viewProduct...tNumber=232646



So what are your recommendations for a mold style based upon my needs?

Also, will tuble-lube style grooves perform any differently (better or worse) than the large singel or double lube grooves as it relates to accuracy?


Thanks,
Rick
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Old April 10, 2009, 06:20 AM   #2
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The Lee TL452-200-SWC works very well in my Colt 1991A1. Very accurate. I have used it with both Bullseye and W231 powders.
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Old April 10, 2009, 07:21 AM   #3
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I have had good luck with my lee TL 452-230grn RN mold.Reliably feeds in my kimber 1911. Just trade a guy for a 200 grn SWC 6-banger I am gonna try in my kimber...not TL style bullet...but I am still gonna TL those bullets. Should work OK. I will get it probably early next week and can let you know then how it suites me.
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Old April 10, 2009, 09:04 AM   #4
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Have both and they work very well. Accuracy nod goes to the 200 grain in my guns because the shorter ogive allows me to seat out to headspace on the throat of the rifling (most accurate) without becoming too long for the magazines.

My first Tumble Lube mold was for my .38 Special K-frame target model revolver. The TL wadcutters cut group size in half over the commercially made bullets and over some expensive commercially loaded match ammo. This is shooting with no sizing of these bullets at all — as cast only, which seems to work best.
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Old April 10, 2009, 09:57 AM   #5
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.45 molds

I have the six cavity Lee 200 LSWC. Nice bullets.
I also have the Lee TL 200 grain - only a 2 cavity. Just shot a match with those bullets. They went right where the sights were pointed.
I also have a H&G four cavity mold for a 200 grain LSWC - a short nose profile similar to the Lee TL452-200 - just finished a box of those before I loaded the Lee TLs.
They all shoot well.
Pete
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Old April 10, 2009, 01:56 PM   #6
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Thanks all - What I'm gathering from all of this so far is that there is no noticable difference between the SWC and the RN/Ball, as it relates to accuracy and loading.

Interesting... I half expected one to be better than the other in at least one criteria.


Rick
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Old April 10, 2009, 02:08 PM   #7
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Nobody uses Lyman steel molds? We have maybe 35 or 40 Lymans and only two Lees. The Lees are aluminum and get hot too fast for us so they don't really get used. Too hot for too long = frosting, but with the steel molds we can switch out far less often. Is there something about aluminum molds I don't understand, or does Lee make steel molds too? I don't think I've seen any.

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Old April 10, 2009, 02:08 PM   #8
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The Real difference between roundball and SWC is in the scoring for comp. the SWC cuts a hole that is neat and clean the roundball leaves a ragged edged hole that can be smaller and can be scored differently.
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Old April 10, 2009, 02:23 PM   #9
webby4x4
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Quote:
Nobody uses Lyman steel molds? We have maybe 35 or 40 Lymans and only two Lees. The Lees are aluminum and get hot too fast for us so they don't really get used. Too hot for too long = frosting, but with the steel molds we can switch out far less often. Is there something about aluminum molds I don't understand, or does Lee make steel molds too? I don't think I've seen any.

SP
I have a whole slew of Lyman steel molds and they're fantastic (the ones my father gave to me).

My decision to go to aluminum was really a financial decision. Since I'm really new to reloading, I didn't want to sink tons of cash into something I wasn't sure was going to be a truly passionate hobby (which, it is quickly becoming so).

However, I've seen no difference between the quality of bullets between the aluminum and the iron molds (frosting, folding, etc.). Last weekend, I cast about 2,000 9 mm, and about 500 .45 ACP - again, no difference between them.

What I DO like about the aluminum blocks is that I can preheat the aluminum mold in about 5 seconds with a MAPP torch... The first 2-3 sets of bullets go right back into the pot, but after that, they all come out shiney and perfect. With the steel blocks, it takes much longer to preheat them, and I still end up tossing the first 5 or 6 sets that come out of it (too much folding for my likings) until it's at the optimum temperature.

Also, if I need to take a break while casting, I can reheat my aluminum mold in a few seconds, but I have to start over with the steel mold.

So far though, I've actually had better luck with my aluminum pistol loads than the steel block molds.

The again, I'm a rookie still, so...


Rick
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Old April 10, 2009, 02:24 PM   #10
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Quote:
The Real difference between roundball and SWC is in the scoring for comp. the SWC cuts a hole that is neat and clean the roundball leaves a ragged edged hole that can be smaller and can be scored differently.
Awesome, thanks!
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Old April 10, 2009, 03:34 PM   #11
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As I said in my previous post, I get better accuracy from the 200 because the shape lets me seat out far enough to headspace on the bullet without being too long to feed. That practice also minimizes leading.


SP Shop Foreman,

If the aluminum molds are overheating for you (or any other mold, for that matter) turn down the temperature of the melt pot or wait longer between pours. I have equipped molds of mine with thermocouples in the past so that I could pour when the mold dropped to the same temperature each time. Nowadays you can put a little aluminum black on one side (for thermal emissivity) and use one of the ever more inexpensive IR thermometers on it instead. At least that gets the wires out of the way.
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Old April 10, 2009, 06:17 PM   #12
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When I'm really cookin' molding bullets I keep a wet rag, actually an old used up towel close by. When the mold starts putting out frosty looking bullets I tap the rag. wait a moment for the mold to equalize, aluminum molds are quick that way, and away I go again.
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Old April 10, 2009, 06:59 PM   #13
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Interesting points on the heat... I've yet to run into that problem.

I did right around 1,000 9mm last weekend and really got into a groove. Never had any issues with the lead frosting on me. I'm sure I'll run into it though, so this is good advice.

Rick
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Old April 10, 2009, 07:14 PM   #14
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frosted bullets shoot the same as shiny ones!
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Old April 10, 2009, 07:16 PM   #15
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Yeah, but they just don't look as pretty when they're flying down the range at 850FPS

Rick
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Old April 10, 2009, 07:34 PM   #16
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true....so tumble lube them then you won't be able to tell the difference. TL hides the frosting to a certain extent.
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Old April 11, 2009, 12:24 AM   #17
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I use this one;

http://www.midwayusa.com/viewProduct...tNumber=110378

I tumble lube it, shoot as cast no sizing. It's very accurate in my SA 1911. I prefer a 200 grainer for IDPA or IPSC. There's less recoil with a 200 grain boolit.
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