WHEEL WEIGHTS FOR BULLETS?

Discussion of BPCR loading techniques, SAFETY, Case Cleaning and Prep, Indexing, BP Choice, Primers, Wads, Compression, Drop Tubes, Vibration, Load Testing, etc.
terry
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WHEEL WEIGHTS FOR BULLETS?

Post by terry » Tue May 12, 2009 7:48 pm

IS THERE ANYTHING WRONG WITH USING WHEEL WEIGHTS FOR CASTING BULLETS? I'VE A MESS OF THESE, AND MADE SOME BULLETS BUT HAVE TROUBLE WITH GROUPING AT 200YDS. I'VE SLUGGED THE BARREL AND EVERYTHING GREAT BARREL AND BULLET WISE. I'M LOADING 65 GR OF GOEX BEHIND A 535 POSTELL BULLET WINCHESTER PRIMERS AND A CARDBOARD WAD OF .050. THE BULLET IS LUBED WITH A HOME MADE LUBE OF BEES WAX CISCO AND CANOLA OIL. I ALSO BUT A SLIGHT TAPER CRIMP ON THEM. IF THERE IS SOMETHING WRONG WITH THIS PROCEDURE PLEASE ADVISE THANKS TERRY

John Boy

Post by John Boy » Tue May 12, 2009 8:18 pm

WW's usually have a Bhn between 13.5 to 15. Add some tin, 1 -2% and they will fill out nicely, obturate and shoot. Might want to consider increasing your powder charge to 68 or 70grs FFg or Swiss 1.5 or Goex Cartridge

Ray Newman
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Post by Ray Newman » Tue May 12, 2009 10:49 pm

Right off the bat, two things:

--See what John Boy posted.
--Second, can you type w/ lower case? Some of us find all capitalization difficult to read.

"I'VE SLUGGED THE BARREL AND EVERYTHING GREAT BARREL AND BULLET WISE."

--Can you elaborate on this/ Give us some measurements.

As John Boy posted if your bullet is too small &/or too hard it will not obturate & seal up the bore. Leading will result -- been there & done that.

Also if the bullet is too big, the chances of fining on the base of the bullet increase & this will be detrimental to accuracy. You might also experience leading in the throat & start of the rifling as a result of too big a bullet being sized down to fit. Again, been there; done that.

-- Chamber dimensions-- do you know the rifle’s chamber measurements? Too short cases are problematic along w/ an oversized chamber. Do you have a fired & unsized case handy?

If so, what is the outside diameter @ the neck. It might be worthwhile to make a chamber cast. Some BPCR’s have headspaces issues & chambers longer than expected. For example, I have a .45-2.4” (AKA 45-90) that has a chamber 2.441” long instead of 2.4”....

--As John Boy posted, up your charge. From what I have experienced & observed, a BPCR shoots much better w/ a full case (or as near as possible to full) of BP.

-- Bullet seating depth: You may also need to play around w/ bullet seating depth. Some rifles like a bullet touching the rifling, or backed off, or a hard seat into the rifling.

--Taper Crimp & crimp: some like it; some don’t. Generally speaking, the goal should be to neck size the case to apply sufficient enough tension to keep the bullet in place. W/ lead bullets, crimps can be detrimental as they can/will distort the bullet. Many Shooters avoid the crimp issue by seating the bullet farther out.

-- Bullet design: it could also be that you rifle just doesn’t shoot the Postell style bullet. Does the nose of the Postell take (engrave) the rifling? Or its a bore rider @ the nose?

Maybe a 500 grain Gov’t. style might work better?

--Primers: what primers are you loading? Primers are often overlooked in BPCR load developments.

--Sights: what ‘kinda’ sights does the rifle sport? Does it have a pistol grip or straight stock, shotgun or rifle butt?

I found that follow through is extremely important w/ these rifles. You might also find it worthwhile to have a successful bench rester watch you while you shoot. You could have inadvertently learned a bad habit which is subconsciously manifesting itself.

Many years ago, I tried WW & never could get them to shoot well. The alloy was never consistent. After talking to some successful BPCR WW bullet shooters, it seems to me that bullet diameter vis-a-vis bore diameter is extremely important. Most of these Shooters made a chamber & had a custom mould maker craft a mould to fit the chamber w/ the desired alloy.

Lastly what size groups are you getting??
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Post by Ranch 13 » Wed May 13, 2009 7:36 am

Things vary from rifle to rifle, but if you're shooting Goex 2f or Cartridge jump that charge to 70 grs. Scrap the crimp.
Seating depth can cause some leading problems, and its been my experience that keeping wheelweight bullets well off the lands helps to keep leading down.
Mixing ww's and lead 50-50 seems to help on the postell bullet. But anymore I can't get a ww bullet that won't leave a trace of lead in the bpcr's. They're getting to much antimony in them, I think. So I save the ww's for smokeless shooting and buy 20-1 for bpcr.

Ironramrod
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Post by Ironramrod » Wed May 13, 2009 12:58 pm

You can anneal your ww bullets in a kitchen oven. They will then be about the same hardness as 30:1 alloy.

Regards

Ray Newman
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Post by Ray Newman » Wed May 13, 2009 2:41 pm

IronRamRod: can you give us more information on the "kitchen oven" annealing process?....
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Ironramrod
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Post by Ironramrod » Wed May 13, 2009 7:10 pm

Ray,

Sure, be glad to. I drop my ww bullets out of the hot mould into an ice cream bucket of cold water that has an old t-shirt in it to cushion the bullet drop. Once in a great while a drop of water jumps into the hot mould, but is immediately converted to steam and gone in an instant. That part sounds a little scary, but I have never had any steam explosions at all from this when I poured the next bullet. The place I have had steam explosions is adding cold lead into a pot that has hot lead in it; something I just don't do anymore. One needs to be real careful there, but I'm sure you already know about that.

I take all the bullets out of the water, and lay them on some paper towels on one of the reloading benches. After a 24 hour hardening cycle I stand the bullets on their bases in an old steel cake pan. Place them in a 350 deg pre-heated kitchen oven for 1 hour. Turn off the oven and let them cool completely (~6 hours or so) in the oven with the oven door shut. At that point they will be very consistent in hardness and about the same hardness as 30:1 alloy for bullets of 400 gr. and larger. Longer in the oven than 1 hour won't make the bullets any softer. They can be stored in a deep freeze @ 0 deg, and they will maintain that level of hardness almost indefinitely. Additionally, the bullets can be made harder (e.g. up to the 10:1 alloy level) by decreasing the annealing time; 15 minutes of 350 deg annealing with the same 6 hour cool off period will give one about the same hardness as 10:1 alloy. This level of hardness will also be very consistent between bullets.

Regards

oldbluelight
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Post by oldbluelight » Wed May 13, 2009 8:10 pm

Ironramrod that sounds like a very well thought out and researched method. The only problem that I might have would be my wife. She looks everything in the freezer over for expiration dates. Firm believer in dates. The other day she was looking at my driver's license, noticed that it had an expiration date for next month, called the insurance agent and made sure the premium was paid up through that date. The only problem was she called the agent for my life insurance policy. I'm little bit worried. She keeps asking how I'm feeling. :D
You can't always win. You won't always lose. But you can always be a gentleman (or a lady).

terry
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wheel weights

Post by terry » Wed May 13, 2009 8:16 pm

ray sorry about the caps ijust got off the range today, after firing some bullets made of 30-1 mix and with no cramp. i shot a nice group of 3.5" at 200yds. i guess i found my groove thing. thanks for all the help from you guys. i think i'll try the oven to anneal the rest of my w/ws, the way ironramrod suggested. thanks again

Ray Newman
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Post by Ray Newman » Wed May 13, 2009 9:20 pm

Terry: glad you found some success! Hopefully your load will repeat the next time out.

Can you give us the load details?

IronRamRod: I now see what you're doing. But I dunno if I want to heat lead in an oven utilized for cooking. call me an old maid, but I tend to err on the side of safety. I wonder of these counter top electric ovens would work?
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powderburner
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Post by powderburner » Thu May 14, 2009 8:14 am

Ray ,
A good toster oven from the thrift store will do smaller batches..
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Ironramrod
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Post by Ironramrod » Thu May 14, 2009 8:46 am

Ray,

I suspect a counter-top electric oven should would work well. The only problem I can see is that it may cool down faster than a kitchen oven, and your final alloy hardness might end up different; probably harder. However, I suspect one could tinker around and find a way to duplicate the cool down rate of a kitchen oven by gradually throttling down the thermostat. Additionally, the right rummage sale or thrift store as Powderburner points out should help keep the test drive start-up cost down.

One thing I forgot earlier is that one needs some space between bullets in the cake pan so that the heat circulates around all sides of each bullet; about 3/8" or so works well. A convection oven would insure evenly distributed heat throughout the oven.

Regards

Ironramrod
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Post by Ironramrod » Thu May 14, 2009 8:54 am

OBL,

I have to give the credit for developing the annealing process as it applies to lead alloy bullets to Mr. Veral Smith, a mould maker in Idaho. I have tweaked the process some, and done some experimenting with different anneal times to get different bullet strengths; however, the credit for all the heavy lifting belongs to Mr. Smith.

Regards

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Post by montana_charlie » Thu May 14, 2009 9:56 am

oldbluelight wroteCOLONThe only problem that I might have would be my wife. She looks everything in the freezer over for expiration dates. Firm believer in dates. The other day she was looking at my driver's license,
OBL,
Keeping your driver's license in the freezer won't make it (or you) last longer.
Just try to be laying down when that thing expires...so the mortician doesn't have to overdo the makeup when he tries to make you look nice.

I base my expected longevity on my 'retired military' I.D. card.
In the space for an expiration date it says, "Indefinite". I guess that means I could go at any moment...or last forever.
Now, that might be worth keeping in the freezer...
Ray Newman wroteCOLONI now see what you're doing. But I dunno if I want to heat lead in an oven utilized for cooking. call me an old maid, but...
You're an old maid, Ray.
I am 100% certain that no trace of lead is left in an oven, when used in the way he described.
If you washed the pan and baked a cake in it, there would be less risk than squeezing split-shot onto a fishing line with your teeth...or swallowing a pellet when eating wild duck.
Heck, your bath water probably has more lead in it than that cake.

If you were real worried about annealing bullets in the oven, you could start keeping your driver's license in the freezer...
CM
Retired...twice. Now, just raisin' cows and livin' on borrowed time.

beltfed
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Annealing by Ironramrod

Post by beltfed » Sun May 17, 2009 10:20 pm

Ironramrod.
If you are going to anneal in the oven at 350, you don't have to bother dropping the ww bullets into water after casting.
By quenching, you harden them up to maybe 30 brinnell -harder than Lino.
So why harden them, when you can simply do a usual drop the bullets on a DRY towel, then do your annealing as you see fit. You should see the same results or better w/o the earlier quench.

Personally I have had good luck with my WW bullets sweetened up with 0.5-0.6%tin or 10% lino to make for better casting. For BPCRs I don't bother with quenching or with annealling- I shoot them as cast.
beltfed/Arnie

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