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Weighing 100 Hornady .35 swaged balls yielded the following weight distribution 82 weighed +/- 0.1gr of 65.7; 38 weighed =/-.1 of 66.3; 35 weighed less than 65.6; and 4 weighed more than 66.5 gr.. Pretty crummy for high cost fodder. Isn't swaging supposed to yield more consistency?? What has been the actual shooting accuracy of weight segregated balls vs boxrun balls?
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Okay--Okay!!! weighing balls follow-up

It's a good thing I get by on my good looks not my math skills. It's 159 balls weighed not 100. Well it used to be before gravity and gray did its worst to me.
 

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That's what I've heard and experienced. About 25% can be way out there. Speer, Hornady about the same.

If you practice sloppy casting I believe commercial swaged is better. However if you have good casting technique, I believe you can get better quality and performance.

The biggest factor that I've found to produce consistantly cast roundballs is to overpour.

Even maintaining the little puddle of molten lead on the sprue plate isn't the same as overpouring. Pour the entire ladle in EACH cavity (assuming you have a small ladle). Let the excess spill out back into the pot.

When doing this I noticed two things. When I cut the sprue, it makes a clean looking slice, as opposed to the "break" appearance. And the vast majority of my .530 balls are within 1 grain and 1/2 grain for .311 balls.

Try it and see if you notice an improvement. I developed so much confidence in this that I'm getting lax in my weighing each batch.
 

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I have had the best luck with Speer. Not only in weight but they are more spherical. Have ya ever tried weighing them Remington gold balls? They are very inconsistant and resemble little gold potato's more than round balls. Best thing is all the gun stores are jumping on the sabot and power belt bandwagon. I have found Round ball ammo discounted at many places. Good Luck :bye:
 

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Grump said:
I have had the best luck with Speer. Not only in weight but they are more spherical. Have ya ever tried weighing them Remington gold balls? They are very inconsistant and resemble little gold potato's more than round balls. Best thing is all the gun stores are jumping on the sabot and power belt bandwagon. I have found Round ball ammo discounted at many places. Good Luck :bye:
Grump- I'll have to look for Speer, I need all the help i can get :lol:
It seems the bigger the corporation, the more they rip you off, Remington is a good case in point, their re-introduced Rolling Blocks are super expensive and have all kinds of problems I know of several shooters who had to send thiers back several times and get all kinds of brain damage
when for less money you get a really beautiful totally squared away RB from Lone Star, I remember years ago when folks at one of my shooting clubs were buying Rem. tactical rifles for target shooting, I bought a Savage 110 police tactical for less than a 1/3 of the $ or a Remington and yet it would shoot circles around every one of those, I slugged the chambers of several of those Remingtons and the amount of freebore was outrageously too much and varied as well, and the company was extremely reluctant to help any of those guys out. Yuppie corpo MBA beancounters suck ! :twisted: everything is product, and only the bottom line matters.
Regards fredj
 

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weigh your RB's

Howdy 'Buster: I've run into the same problems with all the big name suppliers of RB lead. So, I go to Gander Mountain and buy the generic brand of RB lead for 5.99/100 for the .530. The next thing I do is weight out a group of 10 and find a more reoccuring wt in gr's. This has turned out to be 222.8gr. I use about +/- 1.5 gr increments as the RCBS powder scales swings above or below the "0" mark on the face of the scale. It takes about 30 min. to weigh 100 balls, but I check for roundness, dents, or bad shapes and end up with 5 bowls of mean weight and + 2x's and -2x's the 1.5 gr balls. It sounds tedious, but when you do 4-600 balls you can zero your gun and befairly sure of good percision for each group. I shoot these for leagues,woodswalks, and even Friendship championship matches. Save yourself the toxic fumes and possible cataracts and shop around. GOOD SHOOTIN and LUCK. :grin:
 

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I agree with Black Jacques. If you can't maintain a degree of consistency with casting your own, swaged is the way to go.

I do not have a mold for a .40 yet. However, I have a friend that does. So when I need some I have him mold some for me. Just for fun I weighed some to see what the weight deviation was. Honest to God I couldn't believe my eyes. I weighed about 25-30 balls and had less than a .2 deviation in them. With that many balls weighed I quit since I figured there was no point in going further.
 

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Ball weight variation

When I got a digital scale I weighed up all the .50 Hornady and Speer balls I had on hand, about 150 or so of each, and found that both brands were all over the map. Weights were pretty evenly distributed over a range of 4-5 grains regardless of brand. That's why I started casting my own, and a run of 100 balls usually yields about 50% within 1 grain. The rest go back in the pot. I'm pretty new at casting, and hopefully this % will improve with time.

The advice about overpouring is appreciated, and I'll try it next time.
 
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