Slugging barrel & Lee moulds

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Slugging barrel & Lee moulds

Post by BigAgitator on Thu Jan 27, 2011 12:08 pm

They sell a few 6 gang moulds for .44 magnum/special.

Most are .430 (a little small?)
Why do they make one that's .429? that doesn't make any sense!


"Lee 6-Cavity Bullet Mold 429-240-2R 44 Special, 44 Remington Magnum, 44-40 WCF (429 Diameter) 240 Grain 2 Ogive Radius"




Lee 6-Cavity Bullet Mold C429-240-SWC 44 Special, 44 Remington Magnum, 44-40 WCF (429 Diameter) 240 Grain Semi-Wadcutter Gas Check



Isn't it likely I'll have leading problems with such a small bullet? If fit is crucial, why do they make these suckers so small?? my current lee mould is a .430 but I don't really want to buy a .429 unless you guys think it'll be all right. Reviewers of the mould said they got anywhere between .430 and .432 from the mould. I wonder why lee calls it a .429. Maybe they measure when casting a different alloy.

If I get them to make me a custom mould, what's the IDEAL size? .431 or .432 prob'ly, eh?
I'd like to be able to shoot them as cast but i'll also be getting a sizer for consistency. but it's be nice to not have to size them all.





Last edited by BigAgitator on Sun Jan 30, 2011 1:36 am; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Slugging barrel & Lee moulds

Post by Daywalker on Thu Jan 27, 2011 12:43 pm

.430 to me is the right size to cast with. It is .001 over bore diameter. Now when your dealing with a revolver, you have other things to take into conciderations as well. Not only do you slug the bore, you also have to slug and I pray I get this right, I am going off of little sleep here, but you also have to slug the cylinder as well. I once had a 38 special that the bore was one size. I casted up the boolits from the right mould, however, the diameter was too big for the cylinder. Kinda odd huh? LOL...

So with that in mind, that could be the reason for .429 to fit certain cylinders. You will get leading in the forcing cone area of a revolver no matter what size you cast. So with the right lube, if you do have to cast .429, you may be ok...

If you have tried 430 and i fits the cylinder great with no problem, as I am sure it will, my SBH takes it no problem, Then I would stick with the .430 personally...

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Re: Slugging barrel & Lee moulds

Post by Daywalker on Thu Jan 27, 2011 12:57 pm

I am going to copy and paste an article about revolver for you. I am also going to post the link to this article as well....

http://www.lasc.us/Brennan_6-6-3_CastHandgun.htm

Revolvers

In a revolver the throats are the areas in each cylinder chamber immediately ahead of the portion of the chamber where the brass case rests and into which the bullet projects. If the bullet is sized so that it is a gentle force fit in the throat, all else being equal, your accuracy potential will increase greatly.

Measure the throat diameters and slug the barrel. If you have a gun that has throats smaller than the groove diameter, (fortunately, an infrequent condition) there is not much hope for reasonable accuracy. From an accuracy standpoint, revolvers will not tolerate an undersize lead bullet rattling down the bore.

When you slug your barrel, note if there is a tight spot or area anywhere in the barrel. Pay particular attention to the back of the barrel where it enters the frame. A tight spot here is common and can size down your bullet. This situation can be remedied by lapping the bore.

Proper bullet fit in a revolver can do wonders. I can beat all my shooting buddies any day of the week; not because I am a better pistol shot, but because I fit all of my ammo to each particular gun - a decided advantage. I learned this way back when the Redhawk first came out. Through a series of very fortunate circumstances, I ended up with a matched set of the first year run. With their badly oversize .434" throats and using conventional ammo, the very best that I could get from them was 2" machine rest groups. By fitting bullets properly, they will now do 3/4" groups all day, even with full house loads. This dramatic improvement was realized in all my revolvers and I became a better shot overnight than I ever thought that I would be. It really is worth the effort.

Some revolver chambers have all six throats that are virtually identical, while some vary 0.0006 - 0.0007". Most hold 0.0003 - 0.0004" variation which is good enough, in my experience. Very carefully running an oversize soft slug through all six throats will give one the diameter of the smallest throat. This diameter is optimum for bullets fired in that gun.

You may very well find that your bullets shoot better with no sizing. My bullet sizer is virtually retired these past 15-20 years. Many bullets, as they fall from the mold, are already undersized for many modern production revolvers.

Tip - I fit most of my revolver bullets so that they will be a push fit into the throats and then load the cartridges so that bullets reach way out into the throats for good initial guidance; that is, with the bullet and bore axes perfectly collinear.

For those who load their rounds so that the bullets crimp at the crimp groove, rather than having them extend way out into the throat, oversize bullets, even those that are larger in diameter than the throats, can provide a definite advantage. There will be virtually no gas cutting, no matter what the bullet alloy.

Where a really long blunt bullet is loaded way out into the cylinder, the diameter determination is a little more crucial. I shoot mostly heavy (long) blunt bullets in revolvers because they allow me to load really long, to within 0.1" of the front of the cylinder face. This is important to me because, given a snug fit, the bullet holds its axis in nearly perfect co-linearity with that of the bore for an ideal launch situation. The chambers themselves are usually pretty sloppy so that conventional ammo will not lay coaxially in the chamber. Not good!

My Blackhawk came with .4545" throats and a .449" bore. That is a ridiculous mismatch, yet I shoot .454 - .4545" bullets in it, in both target and "boomer" 350 grain hunting loads. In addition, all of my .44 throats run at about .434" so most of my .44 bullets are made to .4335 - .434" area, again depending on the gun.

There is one caveat to the "big is good" situation, however. If the bullet is so large in diameter that the resulting cartridge experiences chambering interference, the situation is NOT GOOD. This is because the case neck must have a little room to expand for safe bullet release. For this reason, for the inexperienced reloader, it is prudent to keep bullet diameter pretty close to that of the revolver's smallest throat.


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Re: Slugging barrel & Lee moulds

Post by BigAgitator on Thu Jan 27, 2011 3:01 pm

Tommy,
Awesome info. I'll take some time to digest that and also measure the bullets that my ".430" mould has been throwing.

Thank you very much Very Happy
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Re: Slugging barrel & Lee moulds

Post by Daywalker on Thu Jan 27, 2011 3:42 pm

No problem. I am not saying this is the answer, I just hope with my sleeping brain today that I am reading right LOL.. If it isn't the answer, at least you got some good info on the subject.

Also, check out that whole site if you have not already. Great casting information there. Then come back here and teach all of us Smile

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Re: Slugging barrel & Lee moulds

Post by BigAgitator on Fri Jan 28, 2011 1:04 pm

What gets me about that info is this...
When using a revolver as a carry weapon, one should not have to push each round into the cylinder. You want to dump your speedloader into the cylinder and resume firing. It sounds like this would be impossible with this gentleman's method of sizing.

The rest of the info makes a lot of sense. I wish he had said what size moulds (according to manufacturer) he had to purchase in order to get those diameters of bullets.
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Re: Slugging barrel & Lee moulds

Post by Daywalker on Fri Jan 28, 2011 8:52 pm

Thats the problem when dealing with cylindars. If the Cylindar is smaller in diameter than the bore what do you do??

I can understand on the defensive carry issue of it. Don't really know what to tell you about that. I am sure the Gentalman probably does not carry lead for that purpose or I am sure he has a different handgun for his personal use.

Anyhow, I just wanted to let you know about the difference in the cylinder throats v/s the Bore diameter and how it affets your casting...

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Re: Slugging barrel & Lee moulds

Post by BigAgitator on Fri Jan 28, 2011 9:10 pm

Well I do appreciate it Tommy. Having never measured my chamber throats, I have no idea what their size relationship is to the barrel diameter. I might be fine.

It sounds like soft lead (pure) was recommended for "slugging" the barrel bore. What method is usually used to push it through? Maybe a light charge... One would have to somehow retrieve the bullet in a non-deformed state in order to get an accurate sample of the diameter. I have plenty of non-deformed bullets that I have retrieved but they don't "hold a lot of water" in my book.

Maybe a soft wax?
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Re: Slugging barrel & Lee moulds

Post by Daywalker on Fri Jan 28, 2011 9:33 pm

When you slug your barrel you do not shoot the slug out. Find some pure lead that is just a tad bit bigger than the bore. You want to use down rods to drive it all the way from the muzzle end till it drops out from the chamber end. Then you measure for the diameter.

As far as checking the cylinder throat, just drive it through then measure I am guessing. I myself never did measure the cylinder of my Ruger BH. I just casted at 430 and everything worked great....

Gonna miss that Ole Ruger Super Black Hawk... Sad

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Re: Slugging barrel & Lee moulds

Post by BigAgitator on Sat Jan 29, 2011 10:13 am

Noooooooo Evil or Very Mad
You're selling the Super Blackhawk?!

funny about shooting the slug out. If you calculated the charge correctly (maybe just a grain of powder, you could shoot it upwards and actually see it moving through the air, then retrieve it when it landed (DO NOT TRY THIS, PEOPLE!).

Something I'm considering is to take pellets for a pellet gun (VERY SOFT) and melt them and cast just one or two bullets out of those and then drill a 1/8" hole in the center and use 'em to slug. I don't have access to sinkers that are real lead.

This was a good read

Post about slugging
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Re: Slugging barrel & Lee moulds

Post by Reload3006 on Sat Jan 29, 2011 10:22 am

as far as slugging your barrel you wouldn't want to shoot it even in water because if the lead is soft enough to use for slugging it will be deformed when it hits the water. I believe Ammosmith did a video on slugging your gun. but the process is simple enough get a lead ball for muzzle loaders they are pure lead and dead soft. take a wooden or plastic mallet and drive one into the muzzle of your gun. then take a dowel rod and tap it back out then simply use a micrometer and measure across the ridges that will be your bore size.
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Re: Slugging barrel & Lee moulds

Post by BigAgitator on Sat Jan 29, 2011 10:38 am

thanks for the input. So you're saying I can slug my revolver from the muzzle end? I assumed I'd have to push the slug in from the breach (into forcing cone).

And when I mic the slug, do I want the tallest part of the ridges or do I want the inner part (valley). Sounds like you mean I go from the tallest part (outer).

I don't ask a lot of questions- I just inquire about a lot of things Spew Coffee

The info that you all have posted has been very helpful to me!
Thanks again.
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Re: Slugging barrel & Lee moulds

Post by Reload3006 on Sat Jan 29, 2011 10:40 am

yes you go from the tallest part.
http://www.ammosmith.com/general-reloading/how-to-slug-a-barrel.php


Last edited by Reload3006 on Sat Jan 29, 2011 10:46 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : added a linc to show how to slug a barrel)
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Re: Slugging barrel & Lee moulds

Post by BigAgitator on Sat Jan 29, 2011 7:59 pm

Thanks. Indeed a good video

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