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Old April 16, 2013, 09:45 AM   #26
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Copper bullets

Copper costs 4 times more than lead and has a high melting point...I also believe it is not as easy to cast with as has less flowability. Hitting a hard target with a copper bullet is potentially dangerous as the slug could rebound back to hit the shooter or bystanders,

I mentioned the upcoming lead shortage...and building a sand box lead trap. Others have made clever portable steel plated bullet catchers that also work well.

Seems to em one should use the lightest bullet weight that you can, to use the least amount possible. For instance for plinking I use a Lee 105 SWC vs a 158 SWC in my .38 Specials. It took awhile to find an acceptable accurate load...but now that I have it works just fine. 1,000 105 slugs weigh 15 Lbs---1,000 158 slugs 22.6... In the .44 Spl/Mag go with a 200~210 grain weight in lieu of these heavy 250 gainers (or the 310 Lee)... for plinking and informal target shooting, they work just fine.

Last edited by Wallyl; April 16, 2013 at 09:52 AM.
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Old April 16, 2013, 10:37 AM   #27
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Lead shortage? WHAT lead shortage??¿

Not me! Lead is everywhere. Talk to people, let them know you make things from lead. They'll let you know about sources you can have free, or at very low cost.

The above lead was from my private gun club's indoor range. It hadn't been cleaned for 10 years or more. It took some work some propane and time, but it resulted in over a ton of lead!

As for the EPA banning lead bullets, that could happen. If it does, it'll take a major denial of basic rights to come to my home to confiscate my casting kit/tools, so I can't make my own boolits.
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Old April 16, 2013, 10:51 AM   #28
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In this are there is no lead shortage, but you have to pay dearly for is no longer free for the asking.

Indoors ranges here have lead gleaners or use contract (EPA approved) services to remove the lead. Lead fired into steel backstops tend to consist of particles and small chucks.... Most of it is dead soft lead and cannot be used in cast bullets without a hardening agent added (ie antimony or tin)... However If I could get a ton of it, I'd go gather it.
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Old April 16, 2013, 11:21 AM   #29
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Old cannons and even the conquistadors rifles used cast iron balls (smooth bore). The first cannons used stone balls. I think if you were desperate you could jacket ball bearings in high temp plastic or sabot cases. As snuffy shows lead is not going anywhere anytime soon. Even if EPA manages to make the easy sources of lead disappear there's still enough of it lurking around to suite the shooting public's needs for at least another generation. You will just have to actually put in some effort to get it rather then just stopping by a tire shop. If your shooting a .45 try glue stick bullets they are cheap fun. Next time I see the EPA inspector I will have to ask him what there policy is on sealed mercury sabots.
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Old April 16, 2013, 12:10 PM   #30
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alternative to lead, BUT .......


we use the target style in our 50BMG Target rifles.

the other style hunting bullets use a .177, .224, or .243 diameter v-max type bullet to initiate faster expansion.

not for everyone, but another thought.
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Old April 16, 2013, 12:48 PM   #31
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I dont cast, but I do have CNC lathes and screw machines. As of yet I havent done it but I plan on making copper bullets for my 460.
May try some similar for 30-06. So far the only cast lead bullets I shoot are for my 9mm luger. 125gr RN from MidAtlantic
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Old April 16, 2013, 02:31 PM   #32
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For years I shied away from cast bullets in the .30-06....then I decided it was time to do so. Using the RCBS 180 and a Lee 150 RNF with Unique powder in my Rem 700...I quickly developed loads that could plug a 3.5" wide steel plate at 300 yards using a rest. One heck of a fantastic experience and the cost per shot is cheaper than a .22 Mag RF...
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Old May 5, 2013, 07:02 PM   #33
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Replacement for lead?

I think the availability of lead for bullets in the USA is in the hands of the politicians and not in world supply.

Here in Peru, we rank 4th in the world after China, Australia and the USA in lead production. No shortage here.
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