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Old February 17, 1999, 01:35 AM   #1
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Join Date: January 6, 1999
Location: San Diego
Posts: 351
I have never heard definitive proof that lead is bad for your gun, but many stay away from it. Why?

I usually plug a clip of FMJ's through my gun after shooting lead bullets in order to clean the barrel a bit.

I like reloading RNL, because the whole point of reloading at this juncture is to save money, and RNL are cheap!

Are they bad for my guns?

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Old February 17, 1999, 02:50 AM   #2
Walt Welch
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Join Date: November 3, 1998
Location: Alamo, CA
Posts: 424
Thad; the only relative contraindication for using lead bullets regards weapons which have a gas port in the bbl. which bleeds gas off and cycles the weapon. Lead can foul up such gas ports, although I fired several thousand rounds through my M1 Carbine without difficulty.

Lead bullets will not harm your guns, in fact, it would be almost impossible to shoot out a 1911 bbl. with mid range lead bullets.

The shooting of jacketed bullets used to be advocating for cleaning out the leading. It doesn't work. In fact, recent evidence tends to suggest that it solders the lead to the bbl.

At any rate, you can clean out your bbl. with an agressive solvent, such as Accubore or Shooter's Choice, and you will be able to remove both types of metal fouling. In rare instances of severe leading, use Lead Away cloth, cut into small patches. It contains a very mild abrasive. Use it with a bore solvent. Works like a charm.

If you use phosphor bronze brushes, rinse them in hot water and detergent after use; the solvent will attack them just as it does gilding metal. Try and keep out of trouble. Dr. Walt
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Old February 19, 1999, 01:37 AM   #3
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I don't know where you heard lead bullets were bad. I've used them for years. Just don't try to hot rod them and stick to recommended velocities. Lead bullets can be troublesome if you push them up to magnum speed.
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Old February 21, 1999, 11:41 PM   #4
Join Date: November 13, 1998
Location: Geogia, USA
Posts: 85
I was told the old fable about firing a few jacketed bullets to remove leading a few years back by a range officer. Don't believe it.

I had to order a Lewis lead remover to get the lead out of a .357 which I tried "cleaning" with jacketed bullets. The hard jackets apparently swaged the soft lead fouling into the pores of the steel bore so tightly that nothing would budge it except the bronze cloth of that Lewis gadget.

Now I just avoid swaged lead bullets for everything except .38 HBWC's. I do use lots of hard cast bullets in a variety of calibers, even reduced rifle loads, and if I keep the loads at reasonable levels I have very little leading.

One thing I learned the hard way, don't EVER shoot factory loaded .357 lead bullet ammo. Those soft swaged bullets at .357 velocities are absolutely awfull. That's the stuff that messed up my .357 barrel to begin with.
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Old March 20, 1999, 10:54 AM   #5
RJ in Rome NY
Join Date: March 7, 1999
Location: Rome, NY, USA
Posts: 16
There are also "hard cast" bullets...
which I would assume * cringing here *
are less apt to foul the barrel.
I fully agree that shooting FMJ after
the lead would do nothing more that embedd
the lead even more.. especially if your
bore wasn't all that smooth to begin with..
Nothing like a good barrel cleaning
to remove the lead ....
There are also gas check bullets as far as velocities go.. good luck..
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Old March 20, 1999, 11:18 AM   #6
hal becker
Join Date: March 19, 1999
Location: U.S.A.
Posts: 15
I heard that shooting jacketed bullets after
lead can increase pressure alot,but that was
a story in regards to .357 magnum, I tend to
beleive it, I've pushed a pile of lead out
of .357 barrels after shooting only 100 rds
of factory lead loads, in my 1911 .45 I shoot
only 230 gr lead RNs. its the cheapest way to go and my pistol doesn't like wadcutters,
never had trouble with .45 getting the lead
out, just solvent and bore brush.
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