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I just got a Lyman 535 gr. Postell mold for Christmas and was surprised ( and dissapointed ) when I weighed up several bullets cast with their Lyman #2 alloy and got a max of 519 grns of weight. I am using their old formula which calls for 55% wheel weights, 35% pure lead and 10% 50/50 solder. I then tried just plain old pure lead to see how heavy they would be and found the heaviest that I could get was 526 grns. What is going on here? I have used their 480 grn pointed bullet mould and with the #2 alloy got anywheres from 477 to 483. Am I doing something wrong or is this typical for this mold? Thanks, Jim W.
 

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:D JWINKS !! I have the same mold that you have from LYMAN. I have cast probably over a thousand slugs with it. When I am using WW and casting at a little over 800 degrees I am getting a weight out of 530 grns as an average. Im also using a ladle when I cast,not a bottom pour from the furnace. At about 725degrees they weigh as about 525 to 527grns. Now,I dont know a real lot about casting,but some of the guys on here do,and they can probably tell ya better that I. Also thier Lyman RN that is listed as casting about 500,I get about 520 grns with mine. I also find the postell to be very accurate out of my pedersoli rifles. From what I can tell ya probably are not doing anything wrong if your bullets look good and they dont deviate much from one another in weight. Im talking about 1 grain differance,at least that is what I do. King :)
 

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JWINKS-King is giving you good advice there is IMHO absolutely no way
to cast a decent bullet above 350 gr. with a bottom pour furnace, you need to use a ladle, I know folks that have gone to great ends to accomplish using the bottom pour furnace to no avail. I've been using the Lyman Postell mould for 1000 yd target shooting with my Badger Barreled
Remington Rolling Block and my Whitworth ML after hex swaging and it's a fine bullet. fredj
 

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:D FREDJ Hey Bud!!!!!!! Ya gots a Whitworth ?????????. My friend next door has one. We got the mold from ENGLAND,that makes a hex slug,with a 1:22 twist. We must have made 200 of those slugs and I dont ever care to see that mold again. That thing costs over 250 buck if I remember correctly,and was the worst thing I have every seen to get a good bullet out of. We have been shooting the Lyman Rn,cant remember the mold number,125 or 132 as a suffix. At any rate it was interesting that after forcing them down bore with a lotta lube,that round bullet shot a hex hole inna target. Now,that is cool in my book. I probably will end up with this rifle,cause he dond actually like it. Thinks it be wayyy to long. What sparked my interest is the make of gun ya mentioned,and that ya had a swage fer the bullet. The swage part be kinda interesting right now. If ya get a chaance let me know more about it. I remember there being one that was supposed to come with the gun or something,and all he got was the gun,no other equipment with it. Thanks...King :toast:
 

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As much as I hate to disagree with Fred, there IS a way to cast using a bottom pour furnace. I’ve cast 1000s of Lyman Postells and PJ Creedmoors (NEI Mould) using this method:

Lead Hot..800+
Adjust your lead flow to a little more than a trickle (Trial and error)
Hold the mould TIGHT against the spout
Fill mould while holding it tight….until a small bit of alloy squirts out, then back the mould off leaving a generous sprue. I’d use a second count before backing away. This allows the air to be forced out.

I first heard of this method about 5 years ago from Lee Shaver who also bottom pours bullets for speed. It’s faster than dipping. I usually get about a 2 grain spread for 130 bullets, looking to keep 100. Having said all that, I’m now using a new PJ mould that will not give good results when bottom pouring. Dipping has proven to be more consistent as I get about a 1 grain spread + or - .5 grains for 120 bullets, it just takes longer.

Chuck
 

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:D Sharps-Nut. I used to bottom pour for almost 25 years,and at that time I was only casting pistol type bullets and it worked ok. After getting into this BPCR I continued using the bottom pour on my LYMAN 20lb furnace. I was getting about 1 out of every 4 cast to look ok. I even opened up the outflow a little so it would fill the mold better,and left a large sprue on it. Your are correct about getting a rythem,but I just could not do it using two molds without having to recast about 60 percent of my castings. Now with the ladel method I have much more consistancy,and can keep three molds going. But,without that bottom pour I could not get all the molds up to temp to inturn get clean cast. I have found taht after about 30 projos have been cast,and I keep my rythem,all is generaly well on the casting bench...Generally. I just cant get the big slugs to fill out properly without that ladel. And casting those 650 grn saeco are all but an impossibility without the proper temp(800 degrees,)and a full ladel. Im a failure at bottom pour for thos larger molds. but that bottom pour sure helps ha turn out a lotta pistol projos in the double cavity molds. King
 

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:D Hi.all.well I might just as well throw in my two cents worth in this pot too.I bottom pour and ladle cast,I get better bullets with the ladle but also get good results with bottom pour.One thing to remember when you pour the lead ,ladle or bottom when you pour fast that lead acts just like milk gteetin poured in a round bottom glass it likes to wash back up the opposit side of the glass,well lead will do the same thing,but lead cools fast so you get a void were it boils up the side.
When I bottom pour I get my lead up to 750-775 deg. I find that workes best for most of my moulds ,some like it a little hotter,but I stop when I start seing crystals forming under the sprew puddle.I hold the mould tight under the nipple and from there it takes a little adjusting on the flow.What I look fore is were the vent grooves are you will get little wuns like peach fuzz from 1/16" to almost 1/8" long that is when you have the proper temp and flow.When I fill the mould i hold it till a little lead squirts out and hold for 1or 2 seconds let up on the handle just a little and back off the mould and let a puddle form,heck let it run over it is reusable .The reason I hold that mould under the nipple so long I'm wating for the lead to set up a little I found you get less shrinkage and less voids under the sprew plate.Then I set that mould on top of the pot and use the second mould to let it cool.I cast with two moulds so I dont get the bullets out of round by opening the blocks to soon.Even when the puddle is set the lead in the mould is still soft and you will pull the bullet when you open the block.I hear a lot of coments about certain moulds pouring out of round bullets that is the major caust for that and shrinkage.You can take Steve Brooks best lathe turned mould blockes and get a out of round bullet when you dont do it right I know I do it when I get in a hurry.
Now the ladle is a little differant deal.I start with the mould with the sprew plate on the side start the pour on the side and slowley turn the mould up hold the ladle for about two seconds and raise it slow and form a generous puddle to allow for shrinkage under the plate.The plate should swing loose by itself you will get a sharper bullet base and it gives the air a way out to get a better filled bullet.
When you have all your things together you will get a bullet that has good sharp edges in the groovse and base.I probly through 40-50 bullets back in the pot before I get it were I want it.
By the way my Lyman postells .457-132 cv come out 527 gr.with a 30-1 lead tin mix I dont use ww. I dont care to use antimony.
I dont know if my way of doing this is right or not,but it has worked for me for 40+ years?dont know fer sure.Lp.
 

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KING said:
:D FREDJ Hey Bud!!!!!!! Ya gots a Whitworth ?????????. My friend next door has one. We got the mold from ENGLAND,that makes a hex slug,with a 1:22 twist. We must have made 200 of those slugs and I dont ever care to see that mold again. That thing costs over 250 buck if I remember correctly,and was the worst thing I have every seen to get a good bullet out of. quote ]

King
Sounds like that Whitworth needs a better home, and I'd bet you really enjoy the rifle cranking that goes along with a Whit.
That Dyson Mould is an absolute POS, I've got a British friend who was
kind enough to get me started out right when I first got mine a number of years ago, he actually shoots original Whits. not because they're so superior but it's less legal hassle, crazy world isn't it those commies over there are flat out insane when it comes to any kind of gun, even the Brit. Olympic free pistol shooters have to keep thier .22 pistols in France or Belgium and go there to practice, and yet they have a skyrocketing gun violence rate, You can go into a London biker bar and buy Machine pistols, AKM's and even an RPG if you really wanted them, but guys like my friend have to get official permission from the constabulary to posses
a repro flinter, I think eventually after the failure of British rock and blunt object control they'll end having to suspend the populace from bungee cords to preclude kicking and biting ;-) At any rate my friend told me to avoid the Dyson mould like the plague, he'd heard a rumour somewhere that someone had actually produced some decent bullets from one but never was able to substantiate it ;-)
The swage I have is the bench vise type and I got it from Gibbs rifle company in Martinsburg W. Virginia, you're supposed to use .50 cal inline type slugs, but they're outrageously expensive and you end up with lead fins you need to trim off with an exacto knife, which is hardly conducive to LR accuracy what I've done is cast Lyman .458 Postels and swage them they're not fully filled out hex, but fit well, load easily and bump up just fine, I haven't had much of an opportunity to test them at LR on paper bu have killed any number of rocks, the silhouette shooting I've done with the rifle is using the standard Lyman "Whitworth" 475 gr. .451
bullet cast of straight lead (or thereabouts) these are standard round bullets but they bump up nicely to fill the bore when fired I shoot them
with a 70 gr. load of Elephant FFg with a milk carton wad over the charge
and if you do your part you can wax the ram every time, addmitedly this is a minimalist approach but it works fine, and I know other guys that shoot the same load and do quite well with it. Some guys you see at Friendship use beautiful swaged or cast PP (paper patched) bullets, use
a drop tube arraingement to charge the barrel etc, which would have been
more along the lines of the original Brit. shooters, however I don't think it really makes much of a difference considering wind and mirage etc
perhaps on paper at 800 to 1000 yd's or beyond that approach would be superior but I've never had the opportunity to try that out, I considered shooting my Whit' at the Lodi 1000 yd BPCR match, but once I shot that match with my Rem RB .45-70 it became clear I'd never have enough time with a ML in the time allowed per relay, I am virtually certian however that a well fed Whit could at least hold it's own agains't the
BPC rifles if there was adequate time. At any rate these are true rifle crank's rifles, I hope you get your Buddy to part with his, I'm certain you'd find shooting it as fascinating as I do.
Regards fredj
 

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:D Fredj I have been working on him parting with it a lot. He does not have time to shoot it,and at present I do. I think it is a reeeeaalll interesting rifle to shoot. I think it needs a home where it can be appreciated and shot a lot,and im the one that can adopt it. :-D :-D king
 

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lyman molds

JWinks,
When this mold originated a hundred plus years ago the weight was based on a lead -tin alloy. The new postell molds sold by Lyman today have a different nose shape than the original and I don't know if these changes were supposed to maintain the 535 grn. weight . I know my mold doesn't. For what its worth, my bullets measure a shade over .458 by 1.410 long. Out of 20-1 they weigh around 522 grns. 30-1 goes 527 and with pure lead they weigh 536 grns.
Oldwoodburner
 

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This is indeed a good topic, the "bottom pour vs dipper" has certainly deserved the attention it gets. I have used both, can't say I was without problems with either one. However, after using a botton pour, off and on, for over twenty years I discovered something by accident.
If I keep the spout clean...good running stream of lead, and direct the lead onto the sprue hole from an additional two, perhaps three inches, I get much better bullets. This does make a mess! It also makes a large ugly sprue that has to "whacked" pretty hard with the Ole hickory stick.
I now have a Lee Production Pot...The one that is about four or five inches higher than the base. I put my ingot mold on the base, set my mold on one of the dividers in the ingot mold, and direct the stream of lead into the hole, sometimes requiring a second attempt to hit the hole. As I said, this takes a little practice to learn where that "stream" of lead is going to land on the mold but it is not as bad as it sounds. I have tried this with a dipper and the results were disasterous! Lead everyehere! I have been able to keep my remelts down to about 3 or 4 out of a hundred using a variance of 1gr on 405 and 500 gr bullets. Now, let me say that I don't own a mold that throws exactly what it is supposed to. ie, my 500gr Lee Mold throws 503gr pure lead and 498gr Wheel Weights. I don't care why this is, I don't worry about it, or spend a lot of time trying to fix it. I have been pleased with all the Lee molds I have had, with only one exception. I also own RCBS and Saeco, If they throw better bullets I am not smart enough to see it. None seem to work any better, or worse, with the aforementioned method of dropping the lead.
My Saeco .358 - 245 gr mold drops a 237gr pure lead bullet and is extremely sensisitive to "right temperature". So, having said all this, it's back to the orignal thought of which is better? I don't have a clue! It's going to boil down to what is working for you. Change is good, changing from one method to the other is great. But don't expect miracles. It just ain't there.
Russ
 

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Marsh said:
I enlarged the spout hole with a 1/8" drill so more lead would run out for the large bullets. This helps a lot using a bottom pour!

Marsh
Marsh, Me friend...Clue me in as to how that rod, the one that controls the pour, can be adjusted, or made to fit better. That anoying drip I get from my pot, after enlarging the pour hole, has made me wonder about this practice. Using the screwdriver to twist & turn & jiggle, and whatever, will slow it down but it's seems to always be there. Life was good when my pot didn't drip :) Now she's got a bad case of the drips :evil: There are times when I wish I hadn't done that, It's not real bad...builds a little stalagmite... you know, those rock pillars seen in caves, guess that's what it called...Anyway, one of these little jokers forms about ever ten minutes or so and I have to take my handy dandy Boy Scout pliars and toss it back in the melt.
What now coach? How do you stop this? I don't know, but I don't think you can replace that nipple on the bottom pour. Got any suggestions?
Respectfully,Russ...Transplanted Applachian Hill Folk.
 
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