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Old November 17, 2013, 02:26 PM   #1
Vance
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Painting and powder coating bullets

I have tried the 2 part epoxy paint with HBN powder mixed in. It works OK. I will post pictures of that later.

I have been researching the powder coat system and have seen video's of people doing it with various brands of guns. I have noticed that the Harbor Freight gun needs to be shook often to get a good flow of the powder and requires higher pressure air to do it. I found the Eastwood Company and their offering. http://www.eastwood.com/original-hot...-gun-3252.html
For $120 I got the gun, some accessories and 4 - 8 oz jars of powder. They are running a promotion of free shipping for orders over $50. Their gun only requires 5 to 10 psi and the video I watched of it in action, it seems to get a good flow of powder out of it without any shaking of the gun.

I will be using it for other projects as well. I really want to do this as I find it annoying to get sticky fingers from the waxy bullet lube and the color is cool.

More on that later.
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Old November 17, 2013, 03:23 PM   #2
Chaz88
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Quote:
Painting and powder coating bullets
Do people actually do this? First I ever heard of it. Would you need to worry about the coating causing the bullet to be to big? What about building up in the barrel and causing over pressure issues.
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Old November 17, 2013, 03:40 PM   #3
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I only have the HF gun, and I don't find that I have to shake it much unless it is getting very low. I do find that tilting it different directions helps quite a bit. I can see the flow coming out of the end of the gun and if it stops, a shift to one side or another buries the small tube back under the powder supply and blows it up into the "cloud" again and it is pushed out the top of the sprayer. If it is held perfectly still for long, the air current will blow the powder away from the inlet jet and not keep the powder in a flowing state. I'm using 20psi in mine, but I read where others are using from 12psi up to 25. I have a $6 regulator on my gun, so I don't know how accurate that really is.
Here's a quick cellphone pic, showing the short tube where the air comes in (through the small hole on the side) and the air swirls up through the powder and blows some of the resulting powder tornado out the hooked tube at the top and it continues on out the end of the gun. It seems to work best with about 2 inches of powder in the plastic jug. You don't want to fill it up or there will no room for swirling, and it if is too empty, the little inflow hole would be above the powder and wouldn't blow it up into circulation, hence the need to tilt it or "shake", if it was very low.

I don't know if this spray gun is better than any other, or much worse.... I'm just explaining the way this one works. Enjoy!
Attached Images
File Type: jpg HF gun.jpg (159.4 KB, 79 views)
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Last edited by Beagle333; November 17, 2013 at 04:18 PM. Reason: spellin
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Old November 17, 2013, 04:12 PM   #4
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Would you need to worry about the coating causing the bullet to be to big? What about building up in the barrel and causing over pressure issues.
You would need to resize after coating. The PC coating resizes just like a normally cast bullet and will not flake, chip or crack. It makes a bullet very slippery and it will slide right through the sizer with very little effort as well as through a barrel.

The idea behind powdercoating is that it replaces lubes and essentially becomes a jacketed bullet at this point. But not a full metal jacket, a polyester jacket. There is no residue or buildup at all if done properly and that is the allure. There are no sticky lubes, no streaking, no leading, no gummed-up loading dies, and you have bullets of any color you can think of, and they will last/store indefinitely without oxidizing like plain bullets or the lube drying out and cracking like conventional lubes after time. It also allows you to shoot softer cast bullets at jacketed velocities without leading. To do this without powdercoating required a high velocity lube and a harder bullet alloy. This coating mostly benefits fast loads and rifle bullets. Softer alloys and tumble lubing still fit the bill for most paper punching, and powdercoating may not have any appeal at all for lots of shooters, other than just being a novelty, although several guys are using the colors to help differentiate softer/harder bullets and also different loads.
(yes, labeling the container works, but isn't it cooler to have your "hot" loads in bright red?)
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Old November 17, 2013, 04:36 PM   #5
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I learn something new every day. I am going to have to look into this more. It might be the ticket for pushing my cast bullets as fast as I want to.
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Seams like once we the people give what, at the time, seams like a reasonable inch and "they" take the unreasonable mile we can only get that mile back one inch at a time.

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Old November 17, 2013, 04:37 PM   #6
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That's interesting. I like the idea of lower air pressure though. The price of just the gun and controller is $69, so it is not that much more than the HF gun.

I have what is supposed to be FMJ 55 gr bullets for my .223 and the tail is open so the lead is exposed to the gasses of combustion.

There are reports of people pushing powder coated bullets as fast as fmj bullets with no leading.

On Eastwoods web site, they showed a comparison of a normal painted piece of metal and a powder coated piece of metal in an impact test. The normal paint chipped away around the puncture point and the powder coating did not chip and was intact all the way to the hole of the puncture.
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Old November 17, 2013, 04:43 PM   #7
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Here are my painted 45 cal bullets. The paint adds a little weight. They cast at 245 grains and the final weight is 250 grains painted. They sized just fine. I loaded some of them and they feed through my magazines and cycle through the gun fine. I have a Ruger SR1911 that I am going to shoot these out of.

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Old November 17, 2013, 04:50 PM   #8
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Another benefit to painted and powder coated lead bullets is they can be easily fed through a bullet feeder to be loaded. The painted ones fed through my hornady bullet feeder without issues and no sticky mess.
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Old November 17, 2013, 05:01 PM   #9
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I probably would not want to jump right into powder coating. What kind of paint can I try this with?
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Seams like once we the people give what, at the time, seams like a reasonable inch and "they" take the unreasonable mile we can only get that mile back one inch at a time.

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Old November 17, 2013, 05:39 PM   #10
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Some people are having good luck with VHT in black. I have not used it. See post #22 of the thread below for the pic of the product. But you must bake it to get proper curing and molecular bonding, or it will scratch off with your fingernail. It doesn't appear to be as good as PC, but it will get you an intro into what is possible. Other brands don't appear to work, and other colors of VHT don't appear to work well.

Here is a thread on it......
http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...-lets-find-out
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Old November 18, 2013, 12:12 AM   #11
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Jeesh ya'll might have cost me money. Finally found a way to cast and shoot bullets for my .45 with a polygonal bore :-)

I'll keep following the threads, good stuff!
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Old November 18, 2013, 05:22 PM   #12
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Quote:
Jeesh ya'll might have cost me money.
Yeppers ya got to watch that Beagle fellow he has a sneaky way about doin that....

I'm pretending not to pay any attention to all of his outlandish colors and such tomfoolery ...
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Old November 19, 2013, 08:32 PM   #13
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Don't worry Mike, you aren't alone. I keep my blinders on and keep using my tumbler PC method and repeat "I don't need no stinking PC gun..." over and over...
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Old November 20, 2013, 12:07 AM   #14
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I've been reading up on both the PC method and the epoxy. PC seems to be more involved then coating with epoxy. I.E more of an investment as far as equipment goes.

Not wanting to sink a ton of money into an air compressor a PC set up it pretty much leaves me to ask what epoxies are people using?
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Old November 20, 2013, 07:18 AM   #15
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Valornor>> If you already have a tumbler, this is how I PC on the cheap.

http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...Tumbler-Method
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Old November 23, 2013, 07:58 PM   #16
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So, I tried the tumble method of powder coating today. I didn't like the results so much I am not even going to take up bandwidth posting pictures here. Uneven coating was the worst of it. My powder coating gun will be here Monday and I will try again with it.
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Old November 23, 2013, 10:40 PM   #17
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I simply mix powder coat with lacquer thinner in a coffee can and swirl until it starts to dissolve. Dump in a hundred bullets and swirl and shake for 3-5 minutes until the bullets are fully coated and then cure in a toaster oven for 10 minutes at 400 degrees.

I do not like the harbor freight powder coat. It clumps up too much and the green turns out a very putrid color. My favorite is powders buy the pound, inc. The color selection is endless. If you get you wife involved in picking out a color, you get a booster for the project and a little bigger budget.

https://www.powderbuythepound.com/Po...oating_colors/
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Old November 24, 2013, 11:35 AM   #18
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I bought a pound of powder from powder by the pound. I did the tumble in a bucket with laquer thinner. after tumbling the bullets for 1 minute the powder then just fell off the bullets after initially coating them. The next batch I tried, I just shook until the bullets were coated (about 30 seconds). But they were clumpy and not very good looking.
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Old November 26, 2013, 09:56 PM   #19
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I have gotten my powder coating kit from Eastwood company. It consisted of the powder coating gun and controller, 4 - 8 oz jars of colors (red, satin black, glossy black and gray), 2 empty jars for my own powders, a 30 piece set of hi temp silicone plugs to plug up holes you don't want powder coated, high temp masking tape and stainless steel hanging wire to hang parts for powder coating. It was $109.99 plus free shipping.

I found out how inadequate the built in pressure regulator on my compressor was today. It would gust a 20 psi burst before settling to the 10 psi I had it set for. A trip to the local Oregon Tool & Supply store got me a stand alone regulator and that one works like it's supposed to.

Here are the results with the red powder. It was easy once I got the pressure regulated.



These have been sized already and no I did not coat the bases. The bases of the FMJ bullets I have are bare lead, so why worry about coating the bases?
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Old November 26, 2013, 09:57 PM   #20
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Now to load up the painted and powder coated bullets and test them.
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Old November 26, 2013, 10:44 PM   #21
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They're lookin' pretty good, Vance!
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Old November 26, 2013, 11:04 PM   #22
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They are easy to do. I wish I had read farther along at cast boolits though to see the tip about the non-stick aluminum foil. Would have been nice not to have bits of aluminum foil stuck to the bottom of some of my bullets. It came off during sizing, but now I have little bits of foil to clean up.

I thought I would have cleaned up more overspray powder than I did though. I powder coated 300 bullets today and there was maybe 2 tbsps of powder I cleaned up off the table I set up.
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Old November 29, 2013, 02:18 AM   #23
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Any concern with not being able to PC the bottom?

With pistol bullets wouldn't think there was, but if you start driving them hard in magnum loads or in rifle loads I could see where there might be. Just curious.

Looks good!
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Old November 29, 2013, 12:29 PM   #24
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If you notice the bases of fmj bullets, they are exposed lead. At least they are in the .224 fmj bullets I have been loading. Push them close to 3000fps with no leading.

On sub-sonic pistol loads, there is no worry about that either. If I get nervous about it, with the wide meplat of this bullet, I could stand them on the nose and the bases would be coated.

I like the benefits of not getting sticky fingers while handling them for loading and my bullet seating die stays clean.
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Old November 29, 2013, 04:18 PM   #25
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If you notice the bases of fmj bullets, they are exposed lead. At least they are in the .224 fmj bullets I have been loading. Push them close to 3000fps with no leading.

Good point.
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