The SASS Wild Bunch Forum

Wild Bunch Boards => Reloading for Wild Bunch => Topic started by: Ranger7541 on September 24, 2012, 10:19:46 PM

Title: Are lead cast bullets a good idea?
Post by: Ranger7541 on September 24, 2012, 10:19:46 PM
Hi everyone I am new to reloading and also to the world of WB. Since you all have a lot of information on here I just need a little advice, are lead cast bullets worth using and do they gunk up barrels or even damage them? Also, any cleaning tips for barrels after being shot with lead cast bullets?
Title: Re: Are lead cast bullets a good idea?
Post by: Mink Shoals Bandit on September 25, 2012, 04:44:38 AM
Ranger, anything other than ALL lead bullets are not an option when using steel targets due to bullet splatter.....And they do not damage or hurt the barrel any worse than jacketed bullets. At the slow velocities we use, barrel leading is rarely a problem when using a good quality hard cast bullet. Depending on the bullet hardness, serious leading doesn't occur until you push it past 12- 1500 FPS. And cleaning is no different, use a good bore solvent to remove any lead left in the barrel..............Mink............
Title: Re: Are lead cast bullets a good idea?
Post by: Boggus Deal on November 20, 2012, 02:53:39 PM
As Mink said, only lead bullets allowed for WBAS. I shoot tens of thousands of lead bullets each year in CAS, WBAS and other forms of competition and never have leading problems. I have never hurt a gun shooting lead bullets at up to over 2000fps. Yes, it can be done without any leading.
Good guns with quality bullets at the speeds we shoot them and you won't have anything to worry about.
Title: Re: Are lead cast bullets a good idea?
Post by: John Boy on March 20, 2013, 09:02:02 PM
The lead bullet one might want to try is the Accurate mold copy of the H&G 68 - 200gr...
http://www.accuratemolds.com/bullet_detail.php?bullet=45-200H-D.png
Title: Re: Are lead cast bullets a good idea?
Post by: J. Frank Norfleet on March 20, 2013, 09:28:46 PM
The harder the lead mix the less leading.  It is no problem.
Title: Re: Are lead cast bullets a good idea?
Post by: Blackfoot on March 21, 2013, 06:46:14 AM
Don't be concerned about using lead bullets.  Any bullet caster who stays in business will be making good bullets.  Just get some and start shooting. 

Blackfoot
Title: Re: Are lead cast bullets a good idea?
Post by: Garrison Joe on March 29, 2013, 07:18:22 AM
do they gunk up barrels


 or even damage them

There is some extra fouling due to the bullet lube that you don't see with jacketed loads.   Cleans out easily with any solvent.


There is LESS damage to barrels with lead bullets than with jacketed rounds.   Who has told you a lie that lead bullets damage conventionally rifled barrels?  What do you think was used for bullets up until about 1900?    :D

Now, some types of porting that has been done on barrels, and some strange new polygonal rifling attempts, are not well suited to using lead bullets.   Neither of which are likely to show up at a WB match.

Title: Re: Are lead cast bullets a good idea?
Post by: August West on March 29, 2013, 10:15:49 AM
When the cleaning gets tough, the Tough get out their stainless steel bore brushes.
Title: Re: Are lead cast bullets a good idea?
Post by: BoydSinclair on September 24, 2014, 04:35:35 AM
Would the bullet split up when it hits a hard surface and fly off in all directions? Doesn't sound like a great idea.

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Title: Re: Are lead cast bullets a good idea?
Post by: Nellie Blue on September 24, 2014, 07:31:22 AM
Target set up is normally designed to deflect the bullet splatter in a safe direction. In the case of bad set up, the small pieces of splash back are much better than a solid chunk of metal hitting the target and ricocheting back at you. 
Title: Re: Are lead cast bullets a good idea?
Post by: Boggus Deal on September 24, 2014, 07:45:00 AM
And typically, with the softer alloy bullets used in Wild Bunch, the bullet flattens out against the target and falls to the ground without shattering like a harder bullet would.
Title: Re: Are lead cast bullets a good idea?
Post by: John Boy on September 24, 2014, 10:53:59 AM
Quote
And cleaning is no different, use a good bore solvent to remove any lead left in the barrel.
I wish!
After trying many solvents to remove leading in bores ... a 50:50 mix of ATF or Marvel Oil and PURE Spirits of Turpentine 
Title: Re: Are lead cast bullets a good idea?
Post by: vaquero on September 25, 2014, 07:37:56 AM
No problems using lead at lower velocities.  As for cleaning, I dry brush the barrel with a bronze brush, before using solvents, it seems that the lead will come out in chunks, then I use solvent an a bronze brush.
Title: Re: Are lead cast bullets a good idea?
Post by: Lone Dog on September 26, 2014, 12:10:43 PM
The harder the lead mix the less leading.  It is no problem.

Well there is considerable debate about that. Go to Desperado bullets site, I believe it is cowboybullets.com and read all about it.

I buy in to what they are preaching. Soft lead bullets will obdurate up in to the grooves and shoot cleaner than those fool too hard cast pills that just strip on by leaving lead behind
Title: Re: Are lead cast bullets a good idea?
Post by: Boggus Deal on September 26, 2014, 12:28:25 PM
Well, different hardness and different alloys for different purposes. At the velocities we shoot, a softer  alloy with more lead content works good. Fit and lube are also very important. If a bullet is too hard and driven at slow speeds, it may not bump up, seal the bore and could lead the barrel. Especially if it is on the small side for the bore.
A too soft bullet that is driven too fast can also lead the bore. I have shot pure lead bullets at nearly 2000 fps in rifles with no gas checks. Can be done with paper patches.
I have also had extremely hard bullets that leaded terribly due to poor lube and poor fit.
When I was casting bullets for the cowboy crowd, I strove for a Brinnell hardness of 11-12. No one ever had a problem with leading that ever told me.
Title: Re: Are lead cast bullets a good idea?
Post by: Garrison Joe on September 26, 2014, 02:12:58 PM
Yep, in fact, the boys out at LASC (Los Angeles Silhouette Club), some of the 'leading' experts on lead bullet shooting, have a hardness - to - chamber pressure chart.   For our pressures of about 10,000 to 12,000 PSI in cowboy and Wild Bunch loads, they point out a 8 or 9 Brinnell hardness is just about perfect.   That is about a 2% antimony alloy.  Half Wheel Weights and half soft lead.   I find I agree with them boys.   It takes 12,000 PSI, according to this article,
http://www.lasc.us/FryxellCBAlloyObturation.htm
to make a bullet of 8 Brinnell hardness seal the bore.   And the harder the alloy, the more pressure it takes. 

Even on 45 auto slugs.   Too hard, and the hot gases blow by the slug and I get leading right in the throat of the barrel.  Haven't yet cast any slugs too soft to shoot well out of the 1911.  Keep going to a softer alloy every time I cast a batch. 

Good luck, GJ
Title: Re: Are lead cast bullets a good idea?
Post by: Boggus Deal on September 26, 2014, 02:19:46 PM
Glenn Fryxell is a personal friend of mine. When he speaks cast lead alloy bullets, I listen! Most of his talk is too technical for me, though....
Title: Re: Are lead cast bullets a good idea?
Post by: VICIOUS on December 14, 2014, 11:29:11 AM
HI Gang; lead bullets -- cheap --must be right for me.
Title: Re: Are lead cast bullets a good idea?
Post by: John Boy on December 15, 2014, 08:16:00 PM
Vintage 2002 Rossi '92 Winchester, 45 Colt - 454190 mold, 250grs - Bhn13.5 or 15.4 -  lubed with 40:40:20 mix of mutton tallow:paraffin:beeswax -  Zero Leading with probably close to 15,000 BP reloads shot in the rifle.  Add also a comparable number of handgun reloads with the same bullet & lube ... still Zero Leading 

Quote
...do they gunk up barrels or even damage them?
NO!
Title: Re: Are lead cast bullets a good idea?
Post by: Cpt Dan Blodgett on December 30, 2014, 11:23:33 AM
I have been shooting desperado bullets for many years, they are the only bullets I have found that will fly straight and true from my circa 1995 over bored rossi 92.  .434-5 groove diameter vs .429 spec.  Hard Cast bullets don't group less than 5 inches at 25 and many keyhole.  At 50 yards much higher incidence of keyhole.  The desperado bullets fly true shoot about 5 inches at 100 with round holes.  I do not get leading in the rifle.