I'm wanting to start casting. I want to cast small game hunting bullets and serious plinking/casual target shooting rounds for my 243. Rifle is a new (1 year ago) Brno BO98 with a 22” 1:10 barrel. My mold is a NOS Lyman 245496 85gr IIRC.
I’m on a real budget (one of the many reasons I want to cast), so have gone for a Lee sizing die so I don’t have to buy a lube-sizer (yet…). If it sizers too much I plan on polishing it out a touch. I'll start with Alox lube. The rest I have and am about to make.
They may be cheap, but I like to make everything I can (I’m sure that’s familiar to a lot of casters). I started with a ladle. Not perfect maybe, but was easy and I’ll make another if I need to improve on it.
Then the handles, slightly more complex but after getting them set up right they work very nicely – mold comes together with a perfect click and meats precisely all around. It also has no play between either mold half on the handle’s ‘arms’.
Next is the pot - I'll cut the bottom off a small gas cylinder. I'll mount it over my forge, and either vary the height or use the fan on/off switch for temperature control. If it's not viable I'll use the Burmos pressure stove I'm about to restore. I've bought 2lbs of this - http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.d...=STRK:MEWAX:IT
I will smelt my own once I've got the hang of casting.
Now the real reason I'm posting... After a lot of reading I'm still not sure about the pouring technique, I've also tried to find some first-timer tutorials and most don't go into much detail here. Can anyone run me through pouring rate/technique etc.? I think I understand about spotting for mold temperature problems, and am aware I shouldn't go too hot on the forge for my own health's sake.
Also, with that lead I bought (he calls it 20:1), Should I drop it straight from the mold into a bucket of water? Will that give me a suitable hardness for my uses? I will start without gas checks, driving it real slow and see how my rifle likes it. Is Trail Boss good here or is something else better? Then - what's a good powder for getting the most from cast pills out of a 243 with a gas check? Sub sonic would be nice even as we are allowed silencers here so would be good for rabbits, and my ears.
Then after I've got a few good pills I can start on the gas checks. I will make a check forming die and mandrel. Probably using boxwood as the main body with steel inserts for the working surfaces. Should they be a tight fit or will the lee die crimp loose ones on? I was planning on starting by using annealed 22wmr brass as the GC material - would this work? If not I'll try other sources...
Hope there are a few left after the essay - I know there isn't much following for casting here but I also know there are a few that know a lot!