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Old February 21, 2002, 09:06 AM   #1
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bullet casting

was thinking about casting bullets
what would be the start up cost?
good brands of equipment?
safety & health hazards?
i reload lead in both 357 &45acp currently.
how about cost effectiveness?
i'm sure you guys can lead me in the right direction.
thanks ,
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Old February 21, 2002, 10:07 AM   #2
Steve Smith
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Clown, try doing a search on "casting" here in the Handloading forum. The search will turn up 139 topics, many of which will get you a leg up. After reading that stuff, come back and ask questions. No offense, man, but most "getting started" questions have already been asked and answered many times before today.

I have some favorite casting forums that you'll get good info from as well when you're done with the searching.
Favor the X.

Steve Smith
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Old February 21, 2002, 11:25 AM   #3
Jim Watson
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You are going to have to have a good source of lead - cheap and uniform - and a lot of spare time to make casting pistol bullets worthwhile. I know one (1) shooter on a shoestring who does it. He runs a garage and has ample wheelweights which he casts up in pot, molds, and lubrisizer he has had for a long time.

Rifle bullets for accuracy, si; pistol bullets, no.
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Old February 21, 2002, 11:53 AM   #4
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Clown, i cast as much for fun as anything

Heck i just enjoy it, plus sitting there after a night if casting, and saying hell i just cast 1000 bullets, now i guess i have to go shoot em is fun.

Look into the Lee lubing system, and sizing if you need to, It is so simple it basically removes a step from the whole process. (almost all of my casting stuff is Lee, i have an old lyman sizer that i don't use much anymore)

good luck with the search, you'll definately fing a ton of info
The Forty-Four spoke and it sent lead and smoke
And seventeen inches of flame. -Marty Robbins

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Old February 21, 2002, 12:38 PM   #5
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I cast .25 acp up to .45, and some rifle bullets, all Lee molds and
big 20 lb dipper pot, I cast at shop door with fan blowing stink away from me, use a particle mask too, after casting a few hours
you can FEEL the dust on your face and hair, also I wear welding gloves, take a shower after and wash clothes, I think there is
alot of other bad heavy metals in those wheel weights, also I've
found rolls of lead that fume with smoke, I take a 15 minute break to let smoke clear,eye protection isn't a bad idea either,
be carefull and have fun.
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Old February 21, 2002, 12:41 PM   #6
Join Date: January 14, 2002
Location: Tupelo, Ms.
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Lets see, electric pot, lube-sizer and moulds for equipment. I just recenlty purchased a set of handles, top punch and sizing die. Best I remember that was over $60.00.
I would guess a two cavity mould and handle would run $75.00, lube-sizer near 100.00, pot 40.00.
Generally wheel weights can be got free or very cheap. It is good to have a large pot to melt wheel weights to seperate from steel clips and grunge. I use Coleman stove for this purpose.
Check out the used market. E-Bay and Auction Arms, I have had good deals at both.
Another almost mandatory item is the Lymann Cast Bullet manual.
All that said, if you value your time it is a good idea to compare the cost of commercial cast bullets, volume of shooting in a year into the equation.
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Old February 21, 2002, 02:44 PM   #7
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JWC is right

but i don't recommend all that for the introduction, Try this,
a Lee 45 mold, around $20 (shouldn't need a sizer)

a bottle of Lee liquiod Alox $2.50

a cast iron pan, on a hotplate or stove, normally you have something that will work, I recommend a bottom pour lee production pot, these will not get hot enough to put as much stuff in the air as Zot is talking about, Hot lead can vaporize and become airborne, typically your lead pots will not allow them to get this hot, a stove or hotplate deffinately will. $0-40 dollars

Gloves are optional, i burn myself all the time but don't wear em,

Eye protection is not optional

you can see if you like it for under 50 bucks, if you don't like it just cast 60 dollars worth of bullets, and sell it all, you will be money ahead, if you do like it, man can you ever spend some money
The Forty-Four spoke and it sent lead and smoke
And seventeen inches of flame. -Marty Robbins

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Old February 23, 2002, 11:17 AM   #8
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bullet casting

Go to a major distributor who sells to the public:
and look up Saeco, Lyman, RCBS and Lee. SAECO RCBS and Lyman are tops. Lee makes things affordable.
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Old February 23, 2002, 04:13 PM   #9
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What about the Lyman "Master Casting Kit", is it any good for starting with or are you better off buying other components individually?

Lyman Master Casting Kit
Molan Labe!
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Old February 23, 2002, 07:39 PM   #10
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Gloves are optional
That's what I thought too, until a biologist friend of mine told me that lead is absorbed through the skin. I now wear gloves when casting and handling lead, and I wash my hands and face after a day at the range.
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