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Old April 3, 2014, 05:38 AM   #26
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I have no problems with Hard Cast in my 45 acp. Mine come from RMR.
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Old April 3, 2014, 03:26 PM   #27
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For many years, "hard cast" was defined as anything harder than a bhn of about 10. People think their cast bullets have to be super hard to avoid leading the barrel. My "target" hardness for use in the .357mag and .44mag is 12-14 for full power, high velocity loads (up to about 1450fps). Anything harder than 14 tends to lead the barrel as does anything softer than 12 at that stated velocity.

The reason the harder cast bullets will lead the barrel is that the lead does not obturate (expand) to seal up the barrel and kind of skids down the barrel as it starts to spin from the rifling.

When shooting cast bullets, the saying "Fit is king" has a lot of merit. You typically want the bullets to be sized to .001-.0015 over your groove diameter. Some guns prefer a little less, others prefer a little more. Combine "proper" fit with a good lube and you can be shooting bullets with a bhn of 10 up to close to 1400fps without any leading.
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Old April 4, 2014, 10:58 PM   #28
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Missouri Bullet Co has fantastic bullets for the .45. I use their 200gr RN, 12 Brinell, and listed under the 45 Colt section. Their 185gr SWC, 12 Br would work too, I'm sure.
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Old April 4, 2014, 11:13 PM   #29
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Missouri Bullet Co also has an excellent tutorial on bullet hardness...

and a dandy 225 grain truncated cone 45 bullet, with which I have had excellent results.

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Old April 5, 2014, 11:27 AM   #30
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I always check using my "rule of thumb". I dig my thumbnail into the bullet. If I can make a significant gouge, its "soft", and I don't even think of using it in an autoloader.

A small sliver of a mark, and its ok for autopistols, generally.

And if its only a bright spot on the bullet, then its "hard" and loaded for appropriate use.

As long as your bullet/groove diameter ratio is right, hard cast works great for everything, except expansion. And since I don't expect, or want expansion from my cast slugs, that's just fine with me.
All else being equal (and it almost never is) bigger bullets tend to work better.
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Old April 7, 2014, 05:30 PM   #31
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For once I found a thread that relaly answered a bunch of questions

I am looking at casting bullets for .45ACP (two 1911s) and this will be my first smokeless reloading experience.

I do a lot of BP cartridge reloading in several different calibers. I have cast bullets for a long time and can get pretty consistent results.

1. There are some posts which refer to hard cast and soft cast bullets. Can someone explain the difference.

To me a hard cast bullet is BHN 14 or higher. Soft cast is just about anything less.

I am going to opt for a RN bullet and I like Lee molds.

I am thinking somewhere around 230 for the 1911.

2. Some of you reported good service from this bullet. Are there any detractors out there?

3. The bullet produced by this mold is .452. I have a Lyman Manual that says problems can result from using bullets larger than .451. Again, do any of you have experience like that reported in the Lyman Manual?

The Lyman Manual lists Bullseye, Unique, Red Dot, PB, SR 7625 and SR 4756 (This is an old manual) and a Lyman RN bullet with one groove.

As regards powder, I would like to use the same powder for reloading Nagant revolver and Tokarev rounds.

4. If you take that into consideration and assuming it is doable, which of the powders would be a good place to start?

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Old April 7, 2014, 09:53 PM   #32
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Thank you to all who have posted. It was all very helpful information. I ended up ordering 230 gr LRN BB .452 bullets. I think they will be a good place to start. Thanks again.
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