Casting new lead balls

Discussion in 'General Slingshot Discussions' started by JoergS, May 6, 2012.

  1. JoergS

    JoergS Administrator

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    Needed a refill on my lead ball ammo. <br><br>Rainy day today, so I decided to give it a go.<br><br>Made five batches using three different moulds <br><br>14mm (Hogancastings mould)<br>16mm (Bells of Hythe mould)<br>22mm (cheapo lead sinker mould from ebay uk)<br><br> Both professional moulds performed really well, with the Hogancastings teflon plated version creating zero (none at all) cripples, and the Bells of Hythe one creating just three bad balls. <br><br>The cheap one needs more attention, it gets very hot soon and you have to use clamps. The stems are thick and I flattened the stumps with the hammer. But I got 30 very nice 22mm lead balls in the end. <br><br><div style="margin:auto;text-align:center;width:100%">
    <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-O7-k1RkE5-A/T6ZK-eIQo8I/AAAAAAAABsI/HV8Kf9uTmUE/s1600/Lead1.JPG" class="postlink" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-O7-k1RkE5-A/T6ZK-eIQo8I/AAAAAAAABsI/HV8Kf9uTmUE/s400/Lead1.JPG" border="0" alt=""></a><br><br><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-7Sc4bzzWvKc/T6ZLAEOdpBI/AAAAAAAABsQ/l5t99MStV0c/s1600/Lead2.JPG" class="postlink" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-7Sc4bzzWvKc/T6ZLAEOdpBI/AAAAAAAABsQ/l5t99MStV0c/s400/Lead2.JPG" border="0" alt=""></a><br><br><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-NG4EBTykci8/T6ZLCOP0UuI/AAAAAAAABsY/__Q5j1EqkPs/s1600/lead3.JPG" class="postlink" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-NG4EBTykci8/T6ZLCOP0UuI/AAAAAAAABsY/__Q5j1EqkPs/s400/lead3.JPG" border="0" alt=""></a>
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  2. Antraxx

    Antraxx #7

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    damn i wish i could by those 14mm ones somewhere...i don´t have fun working with cheap tools, so the only way for me to create own would be a solid mold like the top or center one on your pic and that awesome lead-melting-pot...but i think thats too expensive for the amount of bullets i need...damn.<br><br>impressive results anyway, gj!
     

  3. JoergS

    JoergS Administrator

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    The cheap one is the only available mould for balls that big... even the musket balls stop at 19mm.
     
  4. trobbie66

    trobbie66 New Member

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    <div>
    <table width="90%" cellspacing="1" cellpadding="0" border="0" align="center">
    <tr><td><span class="genmed"><b>Antraxx wrote:</b></span></td></tr>
    <tr><td class="quote">damn i wish i could by those 14mm ones somewhere...i don´t have fun working with cheap tools, so the only way for me to create own would be a solid mold like the top or center one on your pic and that awesome lead-melting-pot...but i think thats too expensive for the amount of bullets i need...damn.<br><br>impressive results anyway, gj!</td></tr>
    </table>
    <span class="postbody">e bay has production led pots for as little as 65 and ladle style for35 not much if you make over300 balls after that its free</span>
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    <br>Trobbie66 <img src="http://illiweb.com/fa/i/smiles/icon_cheers.png" alt="cheers" longdesc="28">
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  5. mrjoel

    mrjoel New Member

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    These are great molds for making a quantity of balls in a short time. These gang molds were what was used in the days of muzzleloaders. However in truth, a mold with a sprue cutting plate will give you a smaller sprue and often a truer ball as they are made with much tighter tolerances with tight locking pins.<br><br>If money, time, storage, and weight were not an issue, I'd get a 4-6 cavity mold with cast iron blocks from NEI. Cast iron if cared for is the fischizzle as it holds heat much longer than aluminum. In cold climates casting outside this something you notice! Also the threads aren't as inclined to strip that hold the sprue plate cutter. The blocks themselves also tend to last longer IF they are maintained and stored properly. You would be limited in size I think to a 1 inch ball or so, but in 14 or 16mm it could be done.<br><br>I can't post the link yet, but if you care to take the time these make a slightly nicer cast than a gang mold. Thinking about the range we shoot our slingshots (under 75 yards) though, I'm not so sure that it matters so much. When we are talking quantity again, the gang mold is king. The Hogan mold is the best choice it would seem there.<br><br>
     
  6. JoergS

    JoergS Administrator

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    Both the Hogan and the Bellsofhythe moulds work well. You can make many lead balls in no time with them.<br><br>The quality of the balls is without a doubt perfectly adequate for slingshot ammo. Muzzle loaders, I'd use a dedicated high quality mould, and certified muzzleloader ammo lead.
     
  7. mrjoel

    mrjoel New Member

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    Certified lead is hard to come by. The purest lead readily available are lead wheel weights. Sort them into three piles: alloy, pure, and junk. Alloy are the clipped ones. Pure ones are the ones that have no clip and look like chocolate bar pieces. Junk are the silvery ones that contain aluminum, they useless for casting bullets. They can have a clip or no clip.<br>
     
  8. JoergS

    JoergS Administrator

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    When I was into shooting black powder guns (I have a small collection of Civil War breech loading cap lock rifles, namely Sharps, Gallager and Smith), I decided to buy industrially made balls for them. Those are usually pressed, not cast, and perfect. <br><br>Using lead that is too hard will shoot out a black powder barrel quickly.
     
  9. mrjoel

    mrjoel New Member

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    That is true especially when shooting deep rifling grooves like on the Sharps. Swaged bullets are nice but expensive. A swaged ball would be the optimal bullet, but again unnecessary. <br><br>I used lead in flintlock rifles and smoothbores, as well as cap and ball revolvers. Alloy lead I used in my center fire smokeless ammunition.<br><br>I only thought the hogan was nicer because of the beefier blocks to hold the heat longer.