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Old May 23, 2012, 08:38 AM   #1
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Lead rifle bullets

I was just curious if there are people who shoot lead cast bullets out of there rifles. I noticed on midway that there are molds for 30 cal. with a .309 dia. Can a person shoot these out of there 308/30-06/30-30? Is there there benefits other than cost, and how accurate would they be?

Eventually I hope to start casting for my pistols, and I was thinking if there is a good enough reason to cast for my 308 I might play around for the fun of it.
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Old May 23, 2012, 08:45 AM   #2
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I have 2 rifles, a Ruger M77 300WM and a Remington M700 30-06 using a Lyman 311284 mold dropping 210 gr. bullets using IMR SR 4759 that will shoot 1/2 MOA.
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Old May 23, 2012, 08:49 AM   #3
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Yeah, lots of folks do just that, with reduced loads.
They make the rifle more fun to shoot and good loads for small game.
If you do a web search for reduced load info, there's plenty of info on it.
Some places to look are here, of course, with the forum search,,, and others.
Hope those are spelled ok.
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Old May 23, 2012, 10:29 AM   #4
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I shoot cast lead gas-checked bullets in 30-06, 35 Whelen and 416 Remington Magnum. I use Accurate 5744 powder and aim for around 1800-1900 fps. These loads will give good accuracy (1-1.5 MOA) with a little tuning.

They are a little cheaper to shoot than jacketed bullets, but I buy them already cast. If you mold your own, they will be MUCH cheaper to shoot. Powder charges for these loads are also about 40% cheaper than full house jacketed loads, using AA5744 or SR4759, both of which are designed for this application.
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Old May 23, 2012, 12:57 PM   #5
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Cast Booolits?

Cast bullets are great. Inexpensive to make, reload, and shoot. Lyman has a great book on cast bullet making and reloading. The last manual LEE published has a lot of cast reloading information in it as well. It has a complete section on the 30/30, 308, & the 30-06 cast reloading. Both of these are great manuals. Good luck..
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Old May 23, 2012, 03:54 PM   #6
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Awsome!! You guys are making me more excited to get equipment and start going! Thanks for the feedback.
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Old May 23, 2012, 04:38 PM   #7
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I shoot Missouri bullet 165grain "#1 Whitetail" .30 cal bullets out of my .30-06. I think (Gosh, that's scary) 10 grains of Unique gives me about 1400 fps. Nice shooting, accurate, pleasant.

Use this load at your own risk. I can't validate the charge weight right now.

All the Best,
D. White
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Old May 23, 2012, 04:51 PM   #8
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Bullet making and shooting are great fun, it's just a different world from jacketed. One point mostly overlooked is that hardness of the alloy is not the most important thing, bullet fit is king. Slug your bore with a soft lead slug and size your bullets .001-.002" over groove size, you won't have problems with leading. I regularly drive my bullets in my .357Max rifle over 2000fps using gas checks or paper patching with no problems. Most people are still using wheel weights for a lead source, but bear in mind that lead WW are going the way of the dodo, the tree huggers are to blame, but there are many sources of lead, such as your local scrap yard, or a place called Rotometals on the internet, its just not free. May I suggest you visit for more info than you can digest at one time. Enjoy your new hobby. Goatwhiskers
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Old May 23, 2012, 07:28 PM   #9
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Go to the Cast Lead Bullet Association web site:

Their members have been casting, experimenting, developing, competing, hunting, etc. with cast lead rifle bullets for many, many years. They are the authority on the subject.

This is the other good cast bullet site:

Between the two sites you will be very busy.
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Old May 23, 2012, 11:31 PM   #10
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What about books with load data... any recommendations?
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Old May 23, 2012, 11:48 PM   #11
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I cast for nearly everything I have--rifle and handgun both. If you're going to get into casting, or even just shooting commercial cast bullets, do yourself a favor and READ--READ--READ. Absorb as much as you can first. Most of the myths against shooting lead are because of people who try it "half-way" without understanding, and then have nothing but bad experiences. With a little education, you'd be amazed what you really can do with cast bullets. I feed my AK almost exclusively cast with frightening performance, my Mosin thinks it's firing match bullets it runs them so well, my modified hollow point for my 40S&W performs side by side if not better than factory jacketed HP's, and paper-patched lead through my Winchester drives as hard as any jacketed bullet could but with much more versatility. Not even worth mentioning my Black Hawk--it doesn't even know what a jacketed bullet is but chews one ragged hole for grouping with everything I feed it--all lead.

Yes---if you're willing to put the time and effort into learning and developing it, casting is a very rewarding adventure.
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Old May 24, 2012, 09:05 AM   #12
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Casting is for people who have a lot of time on their hands.

Sometimes you have to cast for odd ball cartridges, like 43 Mauser’s, but if you can buy commercial cast bullets, even though they cost more, they actually cost less when you count your time and the equipment you have to buy.

The forum "Cast Booltis" has some very knowledge people on casting.
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Old May 24, 2012, 01:50 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Slamfire
Casting is for people who have a lot of time on their hands.
Or for people who like to do it themselves. I make time to cast the bullets I need, and I buy cast bullets when the opportunity presents itself.
Dennis Dezendorf
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Old May 24, 2012, 03:25 PM   #14
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Haven't shot the bigger calibers with lead, but the 30-30 is great with cast. I load 115 .309" LRN's to 1,100 fps with Trail Boss for my Handi rifle. It's more accurate than my .357 or 45 Colt carbines with lead.
1" at 50 yards and 3" at 100 is typical for my 30-30 single shot with lead.
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Old May 24, 2012, 11:28 PM   #15
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What about books with load data... any recommendations?
Best book out there on casting is the Lyman Cast Bullet Handbook (#3 or #4) It has a bunch of load data in it as well as the theory, nuts, and bolts of casting. Strongly recommend it.

The Cast Bullet Association and are two of the top sites on the internet for cast bullet (boolit) information. You could spend several days just reading the articles dealing with casting. Also, do a search on the name "Glen Fryxell". He has done a bunch of articles that are absolutely top notch.
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Old May 25, 2012, 02:14 AM   #16
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Hello, CS86. The only rifle I don't cast bullets for is a late 1950's custom target/varmint rifle in .219 Donaldson Wasp. Everything else, from .22 Hornet up gets fed cast..can't help myself!
If you join the Cast Bullet Association, you will recieve a large "How Too" book on just about everything there is to know about cast bullets for rifle & handguns. including black powder guns, paperpatching for both black & smokeless, alloys, moulds, tools, etc. in addition to the regular excellent Fouling Shot magazine.
As far as accuracy with cast..Back when I could "see", I fire-lapped an 1898 .30-40 Krag & shot the Ideal 311413. I could maintain a thin white line with 6:00 hold at 100yds. Shot many 1" and slightly under groups, with the original iron sights.
It took me five years of experimentation, custom moulds, sizing dies, etc., but I equalled the accuracy of the best jacketed match bullets in a custom
.22 Hornet & .222 Rem. at 100yds.

Last edited by Ideal Tool; May 25, 2012 at 02:22 AM.
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