It’s just another excuse to control society and to take away people’s tools to defend. Even Canada isn’t proposing such a stupid idea like that but that doesn’t mean that they’ve never applied stupid ideas.
“I have about 250 pounds of lead on hand, and am looking for more. Cast your own bullets.”
Indeed so, Mary. I find bullet casting quite enjoyable and productive. As long as one keeps their speed limitations in mind, they work very well. They are great in my Ruger .41 mag. They don’t need high velocity to do all the damage needed. Loaded to about 1000 fps is more than plenty. When that is not sufficient, a couple of boxes of factory JHP and JSP rounds will do nicely. :-)
2400 fps!!! THAT IS AMAZING! I have never heard of anyone getting that kind of leading-free speed from a cast lead bullet of any kind. Getting 1/2 of that is about the best that I have seen, although I do not cast rifle bullets. That must be some hellaciously hard lead! Normal pistol bullet velocities are typically in the 800-1400 fps range, with 1000 fps being a very common bullet velocity for pistol shooters.
About the hardest lead that I have come up with has been wheel weights and linotype lead. Both are pretty hard compared to purer lead, like fishing weights. Both of these contain antimony and a little tin. Not sure of the percentages, though. In most cases, lead scroungers have to settle for whatever we can find. I did note your comment in an earlier post about mixing some pewter in with your bullet casting lead. The tin from that would definitely make the lead harder.
My wife has several old-time pie pans that once belonged to her grandmother. They look and feel very much like pure tin. They don’t have any markings on them other than the manufacturer’s name, so they may or may not be pure tin. In the late 1890s and early 1900s, though, tin was commonly used for baking pans. If I value my life, however, I will NOT be looking at them as a possible bullet additive! ;-)
Here is a source of lead in various alloys for bullet casting. It’s expensive but should still allow casting good bullets that are cheaper than the factory jacketed bullets. I can see using some of the linotype alloy to harden a softer lead alloy that one might have on hand:
Yup that site is a must read for beginners and good refresher for experienced casters. This is a gas checked 160 grain spire point, 90%lead, 5% antimony, 5% tin, standard Lyman #2. The key is slugging your barrel to get your bullet sized right. That and a good lube, I use 45-45-10 (Lee Alox, Johnson paste wax, mineral spirits).
Yes, it sure is. I have not cast any bullets for about 3 years now and was amazed at all the things I had forgotten. This was definitely a much needed refresher read for me.
When you slug your barrel, what size differential to you want on your bullet size? I am thinking that the harder the bullet is, the less it will expand into the rifling, so the tighter it needs to be to be accurate… but I have no idea what that amounts in in actual 1000ths of an inch.
I just use the standard lube I got from Lee, the same company who made the the bullet molds I use. This stuff melts easily and looks somewhat like beeswax. I have a few of their aluminum molds. They work well and always release a freshly cast bullet cleanly. I have used these for several years and no problems so far.
.002 over is typical, my Mosin slugs .312 and the 312-160tl mold drops at .314 using the mix I like. To hard is just as bad as to soft, it doesn’t expand at the base when fired and hot gases go by cutting the bullet and causing leading
OK, that’s good to know. I will need to slug my pistols to see how they measure up in this critical area and also see what my bullet molds put out so I know if they are matched appropriately. They seem to be or at least close. The accuracy that I have gotten from them is pretty good. Pilot error is probably a bigger problem! ;-)
“To hard is just as bad as to soft, it doesn’t expand at the base when fired and hot gases go by cutting the bullet and causing leading”
Yes, it is and if one is using bullets for hunting that are too hard, they can shatter on a shoulder joint or even a rib and not penetrate for a clean kill.
Indeed it is. Recovering lead is good. Makes me wish that I had a sand-trap for a bullet stopper. Then, I could just shovel the sand into a box with a screened bottom to separate the lead from the sand. :-)
This all looks like a progression from real lethal bullets to rubber suction cup tipped and nerf rounds. Would not want anyone harmed by a bullet, you know.
The range of these bullets will be considerably less than lead rounds. Lighter bullets will exit the muzzle at a higher velocity for a given powder charge but they will also shed their velocity much more quickly than a heavier bullet. As the energy of the bullet drops quickly, it ceases to be lethal at long range. This is yet another dumb idea from The Dumb Idea of the Month club in DC.
No doubt the .416 has a better ballistic coefficient than the Browning .50-cal., so not an apples to apples comparison. For that, use the same caliber and cartridge design, one with lead based bullets and one with copper based bullets. THEN see what happens when they are fired, particularly as regards bullet velocity at various distances. If copper was inherently better, one would think that we would have been using them by now. On a volume basis, copper has less than 1/2 the weight of lead. Not sure of price differential between lead and copper but lead is a pretty cheap metal. Since copper is lighter than lead, they will have to do something different so that the round builds to the correct pressure as it is fired. Lead bullets will have higher inertia, so will build chamber pressure faster than the lighter and faster accelerating copper bullets. An interesting concept and one that may prove workable. It will be interesting to see how this all works out.
I read an article a long time ago about a fellow who had made some aluminum bullets to use in ballistic testing. These are, of course, MUCH lighter than lead. He was getting a muzzle velocity of just over 2,000 fps from his bullets when fired from a 9 mm handgun but their velocity loss was very rapid and their effective range much shorter than a typical 9 mm bullet.
Rifles tend to have much better ballistics than pistols, so who knows? Maybe copper bullets will work fine from rifles. It would be good to see some ballistic testing of these vs. lead bullets when fired from the same guns.
It’s difficult to imagine a round being “to deadly” when one is trying their best to kill someone with it. Of course, military ammo has a number of forms but a thin copper jacket over a lead or lead / steel core is fairly common. In many combat situations, bullet penetration is also a significant need. Enemy troops wearing body armor with ballistic panels, hiding behind barriers, or riding in vehicles require bullets that can penetrate and still do damage. It will be interesting to see how these copper bullets fare in penetration tests.
Not sure where my head was on this but lead is not nearly as dense as I was thinking. At 11.3 g/cc it is only about 27% more dense than copper at 8.9 g/cc. Somehow, I was thinking that lead was around 18 g/cc but it isn’t. Given that lead isn’t that much more dense than copper, using copper bullets should be quite feasible. Copper is about 3x the price of lead but then money is no object to the US Gov. They can ALWAYS just squeeze the tax-payers a little more to cover the extra cost, right? X-[
As to tungsten, it has virtually the same density as gold, so can be used to make fake gold bars that are then washed with gold to simulate a solid gold bar. Some fakes are real gold bars that have been drilled out and the holes filled with tungsten rods. The end of the hole is then filled with a little gold to seal it up. If the bar is then polished up to look good, it can be hard to spot these fakes. Both tungsten and gold are around 19.3 g/cc.
What does spot these fakes quite easily is an ultrasonic test. The speed of sound in tungsten and gold are quite different and the sonograms of a real solid gold item and a drilled or plated fake will also look quite different.
I know… this has nothing to do with bullets but I just threw it in so as to get back to PMs. ;-)
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