Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Casting bullets before swineflu

I have successfully come back to the land of the living now that the sickness has released its grasp, so to celebrate I thought I'd show off what I was doing on Saturday, which was during the worst of it. I felt like a pale, clammy, fever-filled fireball casting oh-so-beautiful boooolits in the backyard!

Actually, I was mostly casting lead ingots using my wife's muffin pans:



If you buy wheel weights from the scrapyard, you would be surprised at how you can turn three mostly filled buckets of lead, steel clips, razor blades, and dried up dip balls into lead pucks by melting them all down in a iron pot. Just know that when you melt down what you put in it, don't try to dump any more into the hot melt or molten lead will literally explode all over the place; the melt doesn't like anything cold or wet to touch it.

Afterwords, it's best to not use the muffin tins for food, or even bring them into the house again. Tinseled muffins may look delicious, but it really settles into the bottom of your stomach!

Here's a pic of me warming the shiny new Lyman 9mm mold that I got:



Yes, my gloves are flashing gang signs.

I sorted the bullets last night that I had made on Saturday and only about a third were good. There's a couple of reasons for this, the first being that new molds take some time to "learn;" and second, I was paying more attention to casting ingots. I had a couple of buckets of wheel weights sitting around, and now I have one bucket full of clean lead pucks that fit nicely into my LEE 10lb melter. Being able to grab a handful of lead ingots when making a batch of bullets is way easier than trying to melt individual wheel weights in your casting melter, and makes the mass production of target bullets a snap. Now that I think about it, I'm going to start looking for either a 115 grain or 124 grain semi-wadcutter mold for mass bullet production. I'll save a ton of lead that way (pun intended).

In other news, my Concealed Carry Concepts Shaggy holster came in the mail yesterday:



It has excellent fit and finish, but sadly doesn't have a lick of duct tape. Here you can see the "wedge," which is much better done than the one I did:



I'm thinking he must have a die or something to make the wedge so clean. I really dig the leather backing on the holster; it should make high round count range sessions a lot more comfortable.

I was also able to redeem myself Saturday night by making my brother a serviceable holster for his Walther PPQ. I was embarrassed that he was walking around with the one I had made the other night. I still haven't been out shooting for some time, which is unfortunate because I've got all sorts of things going on that I need to get done. For one, I've started reloading some quality .380 acp ammo for a Ruger LCP for my mom, as promised to her; I've got some more ammunition weather proofing tests to do; I've got a full sized Mosin Nagant to sight in, and I want to nail down a target load for the P30 with my new 147 grain cast bullets. Too many irons in the fire!
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