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Howdy pards!  With the newly elected Dem party, I'm thinking it might be a while before we see cast bullets in great supply. I have a question for our pards who cast their own bullets. So, I have molds in all the calibers that I use and some lead to cast with, but I'm in a quandary as to whether I need a lubisizer or not. I can lube the bullets I cast by hand, but will I need to size the bullets after they come out of the mold?

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Elvis Ammo on youtube taught me a great deal about the whole process including powder coating. I resize after my powder coating . 

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I cast my own and do not use a sizer.  The bullets drop out of the mold within 1/1000 of groove diameter.  This works fine for our low powered CAS and target loads, both smokeless and black powder cartridges.

 

 If I were loading more powerful magnum loads, leading could be a risk and I would consider a sizer.

Edited by J-BAR #18287
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I do not size any bullets for straight wall cases. There is no need. Lee even told me, "if they'll chamber, shoot 'em". Tumble lube with Lee liquid Alox. Quick and easy. Others size with Lee bullet size die, tumble lube. To be sure on straight wall cases maybe use their carbide factory crimp die as the bullet gets sized in the case. I've been doing this for 15 years and no problems. Had a Lubrisizer and sold it. Hope this helps.

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1890244468_LeeAPPpressbulletsizingOct2020.thumb.jpg.469f00b0e03f1ee6ba2db12ea40c7945.jpg

 

I have been using my versatile Lee APP press set up "my way" with a hose to poop the bullets out the bottom into a box.  The sizing does little but rub off any little parting line flashing. The sizing dies are the old style Lee dies but they work on this press.  I use these with BlackMZ so no lube is necessary.  But I could and have powder coated or Alox tumble lubed. 

 

 

 

 

Edited by Warden Callaway
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If you decide to get a sizer-lubricator, look at the Star.  They are an order of magnitude faster and easier than the Lyman or similar machines.

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10 hours ago, Navy Davey said:

I cast and powder coat than use the lee sizers works great.

I used to do the Lubersizer thing but after watching all the FC45 videos I now PC and use the Lee sizers. Much easier. 

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If the cast bullets drop out at the proper diameter, then you will not have to size them. If it doesn't, then you will. You still have to lube them. If you are using the traditional grease lube, then you will either have to  pan lube or use a lubrisizer.  Or you can tumble lube. Pan lubing is fine if you only shoot a couple of hundred bullets a month, IMHO, unless you have lots of spare time, like if you are retired. Same for tumble lube, but it is a bit faster.

   Some calibers are easier to get away with not sizing also. 45 Colt guns generally have more generous chambers, 38 special and especially 44-40, not so much.

 So, if you are shooting 45 Colt and have some Tumble lube molds, go for it. If you are shooting 38 or 44-40 and have grease groove molds,  you might be better off just using the lubrisizer and sizing and lubing at the same time.

   Now if you are shooting Blackpowder, it can be a whole different ball game.

  I used to pan lube when I first started, and I also tried tumble lubing my wife's smokeless loads for a time, but in the end I found the most universal method that worked for all my loads is to just use the lubrisizer.  The Lyman or RCBS lubers are fine, but since I have 4 shooters in my family I sprung for the Star.

    Do you need a Star? I always answer this with, do you need a progressive press? Or are you fine with your single stage. If you feel the single stage is too slow then you will probably not like the non Star lubrisizers either.

  Of course you can also PC coat your bullets, but that is a whole new operation, with different equipment, which I have never done, and you might still have to size them.

Edited by Springfield Slim SASS #24733
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The "Newly Elected Dem Party" will have nothing to do with the availability of Cast Bullets.  The actual problem is a shortage of lead in the supply chain.  That past shortage is becoming less and less of a problem.  Imports are improving.

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If you want to start casting, by all means do so.  Lots of reasons for it, especially for black powder shooters.  But a shortage of available typical smokeless bullets from suppliers is not a reason, IMO.  Right now, delays for bullets are in the weeks to a few months at worst stage, not like primers.

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I cast my own 44-40 bullets have tried to pan lube gave that up real quick. I have a Lyman lubrisizer  that I use for those bullets. I have also in the past cast .38 spcl in 105 and 147gr bullets. Those were for my wife. I have decided to just buy her bullets it just saved a lot of time and my energy. But if I am going to shoot .38 spcl then I will cast out enough for a few matches and lube and size them as I shoot FC/FCD. I also make my own lube. Not to mention casting round balls for my capguns. Its sort of therapeutic. There is a feeling of satisfaction  that comes from rolling your own from start to finish.

 

Hochbauer

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Wow this topic is timely.  I received a LEE bullet sizing kit just yesterday...used it today.

 

I had a batch of cast bullets I bought on line and for some reason about 70 of the 500 were about .456 instead of .452.  It was quick work to get them resized.

 

Someday I'll get into casting my own, and then the sizer will come in handy.

Edited by Diamond Jake
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I run my 44 and 45's thru my Star, but for my 38's I use Delux Liquid X-lox White Label Lube from www.LsStuff.com.   A small amount poured over my bullets and rounded around till covered   Put on drying rack  Done.    No sizing No problems    Lube 1500 38's in a couple of minutes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

p

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Yesterday I bought 30lb of dead soft lead from our local scrap dealer for $10.  It was mostly a half dozen roof vent flashing.  Today I started melting it down and cleaning it up.  I figure to get well over a 1,000 .454 round balls.  I just checked Grafs and MidwayUSA and prices run from 10-15 cents each. And they are stock out. I use a Lee 6 cavity mold I got through Track of the Wolf.  

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Well done, I’m jealous.  Can’t find a scrap yard here that will sell to individuals.

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FyI .... bullets 0.001 to 0.003 over groove diameter don’t need to be resized.  Will obturate perfectly

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9 hours ago, J-BAR #18287 said:

Well done, I’m jealous.  Can’t find a scrap yard here that will sell to individuals.

 

A couple of years ago I hit a recycling place that had barrels of lead.  Lots of soft lead. Story was, a crew was demolishing a large old hospital and just dumping into trucks to haul off.  Someone figured out the sheet lead from the was worth salvaging and pulled it out.  I was more interested in the hard lead but pulled out maybe 20 pounds. It was mostly in sheets rolled up in a tube.  They even sheared it into smaller pieces.   There were several ingots and a bunch of large cast sinkers.  $.60/lb, as I remember.  I called the other day and they had shipped everything out. 

 

I checked to local scrap yards on Wednesday.  First one didn't have any lead. The second one had 30 lbs and I'm sure I cleaned him out as I asked for 50.

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I'm using a rock chucker upside down with a Lee sizer for powder coating. It works pretty well. I just drop a bullet down the chute with the ram down. Just push the bullet through the sizer into the bucket. The chute saves the fingers and you don't need alot of dexterity for a whole bunch of bullets. I'd do a few things different if I had to set it up again. This works for my needs though. 

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It has been quite a while since I have done any casting, as most of my current shooting is SASS with .44-40 commercially cast bullets.  However, for years, when I was doing a lot of shooting with antique guns with odd-ball groove diameter rifling, I did a lot of casting.  One thing that will affect the diameter of bullets as they drop from the mould is the alloy you use.  For example, harder bullets, such as cast with Lyman #2 equivalent alloy, will expand .001 - .003".  If that is too large you will need to size them down.  Using a Lubrisizer (probably a trademark of Lyman), with a variety of bullet sizing dies will make a more convenient way to size and lube at the same time.  For .44 caliber, I have .427", .428", .429" and .430" dies.  My recommendation is for the Lubrisizer.

Stay well and safe!

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One problem with trying to equip up to cast and lube bullets is that the stock of any and all is in as short supply as primers.   I have checked around and everywhere I've looked are stock out. 

 

 

 

Edited by Warden Callaway
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