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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Having several Lyman moulds I had always planned to replace the 1/8” sprue plates with thicker ones from one of the specialty casting product companies. GMW products (http://www.castingstuff.com/gmw__products.htm) is a supplier of ¼” thick replacements plates at $15 each including shipping. I understand these are excellent and in addition provide a longer plate handle for more leverage. But for those of you who are economy-minded Lyman has recently introduced 3/16” plates for their moulds. For those of you who subscribe to THE SINGLE SHOT EXCHANGE, the very well known BPCR author Paul A. Matthews mentioned these in the recent edition in an article on new Lyman moulds, which Paul had a part in the design. But note these are still not quite as thick as the ¼” plates from GMW.

Besides coming as standard on all moulds being shipped from Lyman, the new sprue plates are also available separately and can be ordered directly from Lyman by calling 1-800-225-9626. In case you are interested the new plates can be ordered two different ways. They are available separately, as are the longer screws, or as a part of Lyman’s Mould Rebuild Kits. What I found interesting is the rebuild kits are cheaper than ordering the plates and screws separately. Here the details:

Single-cavity plates ($6.50): #2990205
Double-cavity plates ($6.50): #2998291
Longer screws ($1.00): #2998289

But, for a slight savings, the thicker plates and longer screws also are available in the Mould Rebuild Kits, which also comes with a washer and all screws for block and handle. But the catch is you have to request the thicker sprue plates and longer screws because Lyman has many kits in stock with the older thinner plates and shorter screws. Unless the customer service person specifically states the thicker plate and longer screw on the order you will likely get the older kits as Lyman will automatically ship these until current stock is depleted. By the way, thicker plates may be available for 3-cavity moulds but I did not ask.

Single-cavity Mould Rebuild Kits ($6.75): #2680100
Double-cavity Mould Rebuild Kits ($6.75): #2680102

For peace of mind it may be advisable to order the plates and screws separately. Then you can be assured you will receive the thicker plates and longer screws. With my luck the person filling the order for the kits will automatically overlook the special requirement.

Oh, and I ordered on of the new Lyman moulds Paul Matthews is "high on". Got one in 45 caliber and may order one later in 4o caliber if it works out. Reminds me of that country and western song about you can't have too much money or girls can't be too pretty....... You just can't have too many moulds. :mrgreen:

Wayne
 

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Bullet mold sprue plates

Hey, TexasMac, and All:

My machinist friend made up some replacement sprue plates in aircraft-quality aluminum alloy.

besides being some 60% lighter than steel, lead doesn't stick to these plates, and casting fatique is greatly reduced! Try it!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
By the way, if you do decide to order the higher-priced plates from GMW, Bob Gemmell, the fellow who makes them assured me his plates are machined to use the same shoter screw, so a longer one is not required.
Wayne
 

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Wayne

I ordered one of Bob Gemmells plates and have only the highest praise for his product. I will confess that the top of my Lyman double cavity wasn't flat so I did a little work in it. The double cav sprue plate from Bob really made a super improvement and the existing plate screw works fine.

My experience and my opinion. Your milage may vary.

jeff
 

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This may be a dumb question for some of you fellas, but what it is purpose suposed to be of having a thicker sprue plate? I have been casting for about 40 some years, and have never felt that my sprue plates (6 different mfgs) were too thin. I cast move than 300 bullets per week, and haven't worn out a sprue plate yet. Please explain why a heavier or thicker plate is needed. Thanks for the information. Omaha :?
 

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THICK sprue plates

That be IT, Marsh!

The larger sprue plate helps to maintain mold heat during the critical pour and liquid-to-solid transition.

My friend with the aircraft aluminum sprue plates explained that the thicker plate makes a larger, heavier sprue as well, and the weight of the larger sprue contributes to filling out bullet bases better.

This same fellow is an expert at jewelry investment casting as well, and he explained the need for relatively large sprue "trees" for getting complete fill-out of intricate and detailed mold cavities.
 
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