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I've got a question about casting your own bullets.

Do you need a special type of lead or can any type be used?

The reason I ask is that I happen to have quite a bit of lead. 2 or 3 hundred pounds. Years ago when money was tight and I could not afford to shoot I made a hunting sling shot and paid 11 dollars to buy a large split shot sinker mold. At the time I was tearing down old houses for a living and I recovered quite a bit of lead drain pipes. I used this for sling shot ammo.

Could I now use it to cast bullets?
 

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Don't see why not, try casting a few. How about wheel weights too. These are made with antimony(hardener) and tin(better flow rate) ...work in well vented areas when melting and keep the lil ones away.
 

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I know everyone is trying to reassure us that bullets will not be banned, will not go up in price, and there is plenty of lead in the market right now.

But then, articles like this are published:

End of the line for the lead bullet? Regulations, bans force switch to 'green' ammo | Fox News
I have a feeling there are two things going on here. Which is true, who knows.

There is going to be a shortage and people won't be prepared because false information is out there saying it is fine.
There is not going to be a shortage and fear will cause people to buy up all the ammo causing the supply to be even worse off than it is.

Just my .02
 

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I don't plan on panicking any time soon. Lead works too well for too many things, there isn't really enough science to support a complete ban, and if you think lead mining is ugly, take a look in a copper mine some time.

Si, try this once (if) it starts working again. Looks like they are moving the server... Cast Boolits

and The Cast Bullet Association Inc. Forum
 

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What would all copper do to the 22lr ? I don't believe anyone even makes one.
 

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That article is one of the worst pieces of craptastic, imitation wanna-be "journalism" I've read in a very long time.

Hell, the last paragraph indicates the stupidity of the article. Pennies haven't been made of copper in over 50 years.

The only thing the writer needed to do was do some homework and research and he could have avoided letting people know what a moron he is.

--Wag--
 

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Both CCI and Winchester make lead-free .22 long rifle rounds these days (tin, I believe), and mostly-copper pennies in the US were last made in 1982, replaced in that year by mostly-zinc pennies plated in copper.
 

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I don't plan on panicking any time soon. Lead works too well for too many things, there isn't really enough science to support a complete ban, and if you think lead mining is ugly, take a look in a copper mine some time.

Si, try this once (if) it starts working again. Looks like they are moving the server... Cast Boolits

and The Cast Bullet Association Inc. Forum
Yep it looks like I am off on a whole 'nother set of research. I read a few threads from TCBA INC. Caused more questions than it answered. I got some learning to do.

As for ROHS compliant bullets. I know what ROHS has done to my job. I shudder to think what it is going to do to my passion.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
That article is one of the worst pieces of craptastic, imitation wanna-be "journalism" I've read in a very long time.

Hell, the last paragraph indicates the stupidity of the article. Pennies haven't been made of copper in over 50 years.

--Wag--


Please clarify? Do you mean he stated that pennies have not been produced with copper in 50 years? I would agree there is still copper in them, but not much, only about 2.5%. That i hardly significant.

http://https://www.usmint.gov/about_the_mint/fun_facts/?action=fun_facts2

I prefer to focus on the part at the end of the article that says, "A rising cost of copper will only add impetus to that, and might encourage them to repeat the response to a copper shortage during WWII, and produce pennies from steel." Which is exactly what the government did.

Aren't you a bit hard on the poor guy? ;)

http://A rising cost of copper will... during WWII, and produce pennies from steel.
 

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I'll worry about ROHS when I start having to shoot Europeans with electrical devices. Or maybe Californians, since they are headed down that path.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I've got a question about casting your own bullets.

Do you need a special type of lead or can any type be used?

The reason I ask is that I happen to have quite a bit of lead. 2 or 3 hundred pounds. Years ago when money was tight and I could not afford to shoot I made a hunting sling shot and paid 11 dollars to buy a large split shot sinker mold. At the time I was tearing down old houses for a living and I recovered quite a bit of lead drain pipes. I used this for sling shot ammo.

Could I now use it to cast bullets?
Absolutely! But, as was stated in another post you want to gather information on the process and safety of casting, and the type of equipment necessary. The lead you have would be good shotgun pellets, black powder bullets as is. To use for any higher velocity loads (and that velocity will usually be debated) in rifle or pistol you will need to add an alloy that will increase the hardness factor. Wheel weights would be good for increasing the hardness factor. I cast for a hardness of Brn 15 for my .38/.357. Of course, I keep my velocities in the 900-1100fps range with these cartridges. This will vary depending caliber & velocities wanted. For example, 9mm is a somewhat high intensity cartridge, so I prefer a bit harder bullet. Hope this helps and didn't scare you off. It's fun, as well as cost effective after the initial purchases of equipment. Out of approx 30 lbs of lead I was able to cast approx 3000 158gr LSWC bullets. Be safe! :)
 

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I'll worry about ROHS when I start having to shoot Europeans with electrical devices. Or maybe Californians, since they are headed down that path.
Can't you already see the warning labels on electronics products. WARNING this device contains lead which is known to the state of California to cause birth defects.

ROHS is already here. And, it is absolutely crap!!!

I don't see the EPA missing out on this trick. The Kenyan uses every other government agency to bend things to his will with out having to bother with congress, there is no reason he won't be using the EPA in this way to mess with us bitter clingers. Shutting down that lead smelter was just step #1.
Step #2 will be unbelievable import duties and tariffs on lead because its considered a hazardous substance. All in the name of protecting the environment and keeping lead out of the land fills so it can't get into the ground water. Of course this ignores the million or so tons of lead that already exist in land fills.
I am not saying that the whole ROHS thing is aimed a shooters... all we are is bonus on this issue.
All it would take is for the ATF to announce that lead bullets are now considered a class 3 device. Backed by the EPA restrictions on lead they could make it stick.

Or hell it is possible that I am just paranoid. I would not put anything past a liberal.
 

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Absolutely! But, as was stated in another post you want to gather information on the process and safety of casting, and the type of equipment necessary. The lead you have would be good shotgun pellets, black powder bullets as is. To use for any higher velocity loads (and that velocity will usually be debated) in rifle or pistol you will need to add an alloy that will increase the hardness factor. Wheel weights would be good for increasing the hardness factor. I cast for a hardness of Brn 15 for my .38/.357. Of course, I keep my velocities in the 900-1100fps range with these cartridges. This will vary depending caliber & velocities wanted. For example, 9mm is a somewhat high intensity cartridge, so I prefer a bit harder bullet. Hope this helps and didn't scare you off. It's fun, as well as cost effective after the initial purchases of equipment. Out of approx 30 lbs of lead I was able to cast approx 3000 158gr LSWC bullets. Be safe! :)
See the whole hardness thing is an issue. The lead I have has all sorts of things in it. Lead pipes, lead wheel weights, expired rolls of solder. expired solder paste and other sorts of lead. I am pretty sure there are some battery plates in there somewhere. For easy storage I melted it down and poured it into a mold a made out of a length of 1 inch angle iron.

So first I need to learn about hardness and how to test for it. Then I need to learn what hardness to use for 380, 40, 357, 44, 5.56, and 30-30. Most likely there will have to be different hardness for each application.

I don't think I'll be casting anytime soon. I still want a shotgun, and a progressive press. but this goes onto my list of things to investigate for sure.
 
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