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  #1  
Old 12-02-2013, 8:11 PM
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Default Powder Coating projectiles Methods/Tips discussion

I am extremely new to this process and kinda high jacked another thread. So to be appropriate, I started this thread to discuss techniques or methods for:

Cleaning store bought hard cast

Spray vs wet/dry shake

baking

resizing and seating

etc etc etc
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  #2  
Old 12-02-2013, 8:18 PM
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Spray will produce the most "even" and regular coating. This is a plus in my book. It just requires time and effort to build jigs and that sort of thing. Dust control is an issue with custom booth. Powder gets everywhere.

Tumble seems to work just fine in a two coat system. It's a bit rough and uneven and that will create an unbalanced weight on the bullet in flight. Does it matter? Need to run some tests as I lost half my bullets to a melt-down.
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Old 12-02-2013, 8:21 PM
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My first attempt went horrible wrong.

I baked at 200* for 20 mins and kinda hoped that I got all the lube off.

dry shook white HF PC then backed at 400* for 20 mins. Then repeated the process for a second coat.

Coating looked good and I tried to seat without resizing (.452 die inbound) ended up skinning some coating right off.

Another member chimed in and gave his method for cleaning involving a double preheat and an acetone bath.

Once my resize die comes in, I will get a lot more involved in this process. If it's worth doing then it's worth doing right. I kind of went at this first batch half *****.

So for next time:
Meaty's cleaning method
2 coats of dry shake
Bell the brass a little deeper
resize and seat.

I'm doing all my testing with .452 HC 230gn RN purchased from my LGS.
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Old 12-02-2013, 8:24 PM
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Here is a link from 300BlkTalk http://www.300blktalk.com/forum/view...?f=141&t=84219
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  #5  
Old 12-02-2013, 8:29 PM
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Acetone is most certainly your friend in removing the lube. I've got a few hundred commercial hard cast .38 bullets to clean.

Does not rank very high on my "fun things to do" list. It is labor intensive to even remove the waxy hard type lube as it is also elsewhere on the bullet.

You can skin the coating off without enough belling of the casemouth (pistol) or a good chamfer (rifle) or if a gaschecked casting w/o a gas check you will always shave. Just as with seating regular lead bullets, very easy to shave lead without proper accounting for the differences in seating and belling.
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Old 12-02-2013, 8:30 PM
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you may try and like the Lee Universal flare die, I for one do, especially for .22 hornet. http://www.midwayusa.com/product/140...-expanding-die
you should trim all your cases to same length for it to be most effective.
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Last edited by 3006mv; 12-02-2013 at 8:53 PM..
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Old 12-02-2013, 8:49 PM
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Universal flare die looks interesting.

Right now I'm loading with a standard RCBS 3 die set. I normally just barely bell to seat HC and I get a little bit of shaving on occasion. The PC shave, probably would of shot fine but I did not want to chance it.

I would really like to spray and probably will have to once this progress to casting 30 cal for my Black. I'm limited on space right now as it is so I'm trying to perfect the dry tumble for mass 45 loading.
I think I'm gonna buy another tumbler specifically for doing PC.
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Old 12-02-2013, 9:02 PM
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I don't understand the point in powder coating 45 acp. I don't get any leading in my 45 with my pan lube method and I can do that in the kitchen. My lube is just something I threw together based on the ingredients from other people's lube. I mix equal amounts of beeswax and paraffin and added a small amount of crisco and olive oil to soften it slightly.

The point of powder coating to me is to push the bullets faster than they otherwise could be. that is not an issue with 45acp.

Also, it seems really silly to buy cast bullets from commercial suppliers, then spend all that time in removing their lube only to lube it with your own lube or powder coat. For the cost of buying a batch of bullets, you could buy a mold and a cheap pot and have the tools to be set for life. Now if this is just an experiment that might get you into casting, then by all means go for it.

Now regarding methods, I chose to spray because I already had the compressor and respirator. Overspray notwithstanding, I think it is a better method that will save you time. Tumbling, baking then tumbling again and re baking again seems like more effort and a less than fantastic result(due to unevenness). The spray method is superior but probably costs more if you don't have the gear. I think there might be an alternative method though that doesn't require a sprayer: Heat the bullets in your oven in whatever jig you are using. Then remove, and use something akin to a powdered sugar sifter to shake powder onto the bullets. The powder should stick and even melt a little. If you have a good jig you can turn it every which way so the powder gets all over the bullets. Then just put it back into the oven and cure. One coat should do it, and no special equipment is necessary. You could also potentially use a heat gun to heat the bullets and cure the powder, but the toaster oven seems better.

My jig, as I have now written about 3 times today, is just an oak board with 100 or so holes drilled into it of the proper size to stick my bullet bases into. They stick in with resistance and I can even shake the whole board with the bullets in it and they wont fall over. Since I am spraying, I use a sacrificial tin foil sheet and place it on top of the board, then push the bullets through the tin foil into the holes. I attach the sprayer lead to the tin foil to provide the electrical charge for the powder to stick to, and then spray and bake. It takes no longer to do this than to pan lube, and I get less mess overall(no beeswax in my dies or on my fingers as I size and load).

here is my jig


Here are my beautiful beautiful bullets


As mentioned over in the cast boolits thread on this(which is ridiculously immense), there are sprayers that can be had for around $70 that do not require an air compressor. This tool is also useful if you want to powder coat gun parts or other things as well so it is not strictly a reloading tool. Spend the money now on the tools you need and you will save in the future for a long time. I'm shooting .308 for under .20 cents and most of that is powder. I shoot .45acp for $3 a box. Heck it costs more than that to shoot .22lr these days! My casting equipment has paid for itself already and I've only been doing it a few months!
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Old 12-02-2013, 9:10 PM
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Don't spend the money on another tumbler! This is a better solution and costs the same!
http://www.ebay.com/itm/WAI-Fully-el...-/300996732022

That is the WAI powder coat system(sears one is discontinued). just buy powder from Harbor freight(red or black) and you are set to powder coat(plus a toaster oven).
Heck, I bet you could go to a scrap yard and buy an actual gas oven for cheap that can serve as your outdoor, dedicated casting(via top burners) and powder coating oven. And you will only have to spray once.
If space is your concern, the self contained sprayer is probably more compact when stored than the tumbler. And you can save yourself the careful picking up of bullets and balancing them gingerly on a cookie sheet and slowly transferring them to the toaster oven, TWICE for the tumble coat method.

Last edited by thenodnarb; 12-02-2013 at 9:14 PM..
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Old 12-02-2013, 10:08 PM
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^^^^excellent idea^^^

I could spend the same cash and just buy a HF sprayer too. I have a compressor and respirator already

To spray, I would have to construct a booth that breaks down. It's the space to store a small booth that I don't have. Even 24"x24"x24" would be a pain in my arse right now. My garage looks like a shab-chic furniture factory.

Casting is where I am headed. But for right now, I only load lead in 45. and since I merry xmas'd myself a 629, casting equipment will have to wait. After the first I will probably start lead hunting.
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Old 12-02-2013, 10:37 PM
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I had NEVER heard of this technique....

How hard is the Powder after it has been baked?

Will these wear out a barrel like Bi-metal?

I am definitely interested in the process
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Old 12-02-2013, 11:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigred1 View Post
^^^^excellent idea^^^

I could spend the same cash and just buy a HF sprayer too. I have a compressor and respirator already

To spray, I would have to construct a booth that breaks down. It's the space to store a small booth that I don't have. Even 24"x24"x24" would be a pain in my arse right now. My garage looks like a shab-chic furniture factory.
FYI I don't spray in a booth. I just spray on the back porch/ back yard and hose down the overspray. It doesn't harden or stain, at least not on my concrete. It just washes off. You could put down a tarp or even trash bag right on the ground and spray. the powder doesn't go too far.
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Old 12-02-2013, 11:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hermosabeach View Post
I had NEVER heard of this technique....

How hard is the Powder after it has been baked?

Will these wear out a barrel like Bi-metal?

I am definitely interested in the process
i Hadn't heard of it before either until two weeks ago! Now I'm having great success!

To answer your questions, the powder coat is very durable, but softer than copper so it will not wear out your barrel faster than ordinary bullets. People have pounded these bullets flat and the powder coat doesn't come off or flake. I have not recovered any of my bullets yet but others have shown that the powder coat maintains a barrier between the lead and the rifling all the way down the barrel. Essentially it does what we need it to so we can push them faster than straight lead.
Its a whole lot easier than paper patching and has some other advantages as well.
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Old 12-03-2013, 1:10 PM
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I had purchased some Makarov lead bullets from a forum member on Gunboards and had wondered why they looked like this! I had thought it was some sort of silicon coating.
Thanks for posting this. Now I know how to make my own.
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Old 12-03-2013, 5:53 PM
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One of the cool things on powder coating is that you can reuse the overspray.

It is a dust until baked and melted onto the product.

Any overspray can be vacuumed up or reused I clean.



After seeing the wear tests on bimetallic rounds wearing out an AR twice as fast as copper I was worried that this would do the same.

Does anyone have an MSDS on cured powder coat?

This looks like a win for the .44 mag lever guns.
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Old 12-03-2013, 6:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hermosabeach View Post
One of the cool things on powder coating is that you can reuse the overspray.

It is a dust until baked and melted onto the product.

Any overspray can be vacuumed up or reused I clean.



After seeing the wear tests on bimetallic rounds wearing out an AR twice as fast as copper I was worried that this would do the same.

Does anyone have an MSDS on cured powder coat?

This looks like a win for the .44 mag lever guns.
The MSDS will vary with the brand and even color. I can generalize you have many types:
epoxy
polyester
hybrid (poly-epoxy)
acrylic
polyurethane

Of them most of us will recommend polyester over the others, straight epoxy is the cheapest.

Acrylic works well too and is used in it's liquid paint form and has bonding properties similar to the other types. I don't know of anyone using a polyurethane so no commentary on that variant. Harbor Freight Powders are Epoxy, fusion bonded epoxy. Durability is sufficient but it is not "solvent resistant" as you would find with a proper linked polyester coating.
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Old 12-17-2013, 7:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thenodnarb View Post
Don't spend the money on another tumbler! This is a better solution and costs the same!
http://www.ebay.com/itm/WAI-Fully-el...-/300996732022

That is the WAI powder coat system(sears one is discontinued). just buy powder from Harbor freight(red or black) and you are set to powder coat(plus a toaster oven).
Heck, I bet you could go to a scrap yard and buy an actual gas oven for cheap that can serve as your outdoor, dedicated casting(via top burners) and powder coating oven. And you will only have to spray once.
If space is your concern, the self contained sprayer is probably more compact when stored than the tumbler. And you can save yourself the careful picking up of bullets and balancing them gingerly on a cookie sheet and slowly transferring them to the toaster oven, TWICE for the tumble coat method.
just bought this and found a pretty big toaster oven for $10 on Pendletonyardsales.com I can't wait to try it out!
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Old 12-18-2013, 6:27 AM
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Finally had to go out and buy a new cheap toaster oven. Been looking for weeks with no luck at garage sales & Goodwill. Spent more money on gas and time!
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Old 12-18-2013, 8:32 AM
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Finally had to go out and buy a new cheap toaster oven. Been looking for weeks with no luck at garage sales & Goodwill. Spent more money on gas and time!
Craigslist is your friend, so is fleabay and walmart.
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Old 12-19-2013, 10:47 AM
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www.prismaticpowders.com

found this website. powder coating powders are half the price here as powderbythepound

bigger selection too. now to find a nice metallic turquoise blue/green

Last edited by Germz; 12-19-2013 at 11:35 AM..
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Old 12-19-2013, 8:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Germz View Post
http://www.prismaticpowders.com

found this website. powder coating powders are half the price here as powderbythepound

bigger selection too. now to find a nice metallic turquoise blue/green

You need to fix yer link. Oh wait...

I fixed it for yas.

Good job in finding this. Too bad they only sell by the LB though. My local powder outfitter is cheaper, but there is a better selection here.

BTW, 1 LB is enough to coat prolly 50k + bullets.
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Old 01-30-2014, 7:54 PM
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400 for 15 is just a tad hot in my new little toaster over.
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Old 01-30-2014, 8:04 PM
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Oh by the way I have that WAI powder coating gun. I am willing to sell it for $60. It works great but I find it more fun to tumble powder coat. only used one time!
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Old 01-30-2014, 8:23 PM
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400 for 15 is just a tad hot in my new little toaster over.
The problem with a lot of the toaster ovens is that their "temp" vs "actual temp" or "temp range" can be pretty damned high. Mine tends towards the cooler side so that helps.

But I've had meltdowns as well.

In your case you might want to get some kind of quality thermocouple or other temp reading system so you can find the right setting.
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Old 01-30-2014, 8:30 PM
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I tumble these, everything went pretty smoothly.
225 for 10 to get the lube off.
let cool and then gave a little acetone wash.
allowed to fully dry.
tossed a tiny bit of red PC in an old salsa jar, added bullets and then set the whole container into my tumbler.
tumbled for 20 mins

set them all neatly on the foil tray, set the little toaster to 400 for 20. checked at 15 and noticed that I had a pile of molten lead.

The PC was actually fully cure and most look like deflated balloons once the lead poured out.
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Old 01-30-2014, 11:35 PM
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400 for 15 is just a tad hot in my new little toaster over.
Some of those look chocolately delicious!
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Old 01-31-2014, 6:40 PM
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i noticed that with foil i will get melted .224 boolits, but on the grating which allows air to flow? i do not get melted boolits at the same temp and duration
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Old 02-01-2014, 8:09 AM
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I use 12 gauge sheet metal cut to same size as toaster oven pan, covered with non-stick tin foil.
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Old 02-01-2014, 8:06 PM
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I think the tiny over was basically acting like a broiler. So I used the grate with foul and put it on the top shelf then put the tray with foil on bottom shelf (with PC bullits)

18 min @ 400 again
Viola


came out a little uneven, HF Red PC seems to be wicked dark. Maybe a touch less on the tumble and go for two coats.
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Old 02-01-2014, 8:50 PM
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I tumble lubed cast boolits for a while before buying a Star and was happy as i was starting out and it was cheap. No offense but so far, all the pics of powder coating looks like a major boatload of work and messy as all get out.

Does anybody have it down to an art yet where you can do thousands fairly quickly and clean?

Al
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Old 02-01-2014, 9:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigred1 View Post
I think the tiny over was basically acting like a broiler. So I used the grate with foul and put it on the top shelf then put the tray with foil on bottom shelf (with PC bullits)

18 min @ 400 again
Viola


came out a little uneven, HF Red PC seems to be wicked dark. Maybe a touch less on the tumble and go for two coats.
tumble lube or spray? Tumble lube will be uneven and may require two coats. Spray on you should not touch (spray n back on same device) as you will knock the powder off if you do so. You do with tumble lubing but the general unevenness kind of makes you not notice.

Also your temp is a little high still HF Red turns dark when the heat is too high. Dial it back a little more, it should be lipstick red.
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Old 02-01-2014, 11:30 PM
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inkman - I did this batch in a matter of 5 mins +- not including the total of 38 mins of baking. There was absolutely no mess involved. The most time consuming part was using my leather man to stand them all up. The whole PC thing for me is just something to break the monotony.

Meaty- thanks for the tip, I'll dial it back to 350 for the next test batch. Plus I'll probably use half the amount of PC and go to coats. I really wanted some lipstick red 45s.

I'm trying to get this down, my wife's keeps seeing this pic of a Tiffany blue glock and accessories including the rounds in the mag.
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Old 02-02-2014, 8:41 PM
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i dry powder tumble and bake for 2 coats, my particular oven 15 min at 350F. if you make your own trays with a 1" edge all the way around you can stack and bake for 2x the volume. I did over 500 .224 the other day in a couple of hours, that is including casting them, just not sizing them.
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Old 02-03-2014, 3:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thenodnarb View Post
here is my jig


Here are my beautiful beautiful bullets
Quote:
Originally Posted by thenodnarb View Post
Don't spend the money on another tumbler! This is a better solution and costs the same!
http://www.ebay.com/itm/WAI-Fully-el...-/300996732022
Thanks for link to PC gun and your jig has inspired me, Ill post pics when I finish mine.

Ive been having I real hard time finding bullets to reload for x39 so last night I bought two Lee molds, one 155gr & one 160gr, and im gunna try my hand at rolling my own from scratch.

I'm gunna skip the 2xtumble method and jump straight to the dust method but what do you guys think of this fellas system...
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Old 02-03-2014, 6:58 PM
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.. wow, I never thunk about this stuff.. crazy cool!
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Old 02-04-2014, 12:52 AM
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Originally Posted by ArmedCMT View Post
...
I'm gunna skip the 2xtumble method and jump straight to the dust method but what do you guys think of this fellas system...
I do not have the time to watch his video but I HAVE to ask myself, WHY would ANYONE go to the trouble to coate their bullets to then put a gas check on them? Makes NO sense to me. I mean, THAT is a sign that all they want are colored bullets. But if the coating is anything decent then there is no need for a gas check... Sorry, don't need to hear arguments. The jury is DONE deciding this. I coat so that I do not have to buy plated or j-worded. I coat so that I can cast. I will NOT coat and then gas check... TOTAL waste of my time.

He is fired for having a pic like that. It gives the wrong idea behind coating and says he has no faith in the final product... Almost turns it into a hipster thing to do... Eww!
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Old 02-14-2014, 1:23 AM
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`Twas brillig, and the slithy toves...

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Old 02-14-2014, 8:14 AM
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Originally Posted by bigred1 View Post
inkman - I did this batch in a matter of 5 mins +- not including the total of 38 mins of baking. There was absolutely no mess involved. The most time consuming part was using my leather man to stand them all up. The whole PC thing for me is just something to break the monotony.

Meaty- thanks for the tip, I'll dial it back to 350 for the next test batch. Plus I'll probably use half the amount of PC and go to coats. I really wanted some lipstick red 45s.

I'm trying to get this down, my wife's keeps seeing this pic of a Tiffany blue glock and accessories including the rounds in the mag.
Try to keep the temps in the 400-350 range and cook for a shorter time. The cycle time on the HF PC is 10-15 minutes. 38 minutes is way too long, hence the dark red.
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Old 02-14-2014, 8:14 AM
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it is like some nightmarish glowing boolits. Love it.
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Old 04-18-2014, 1:43 AM
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Take note and learn from some of my moves adn mistakes...

I have stocked up on a lot of bullets and I am back in the PC mode again BUT I have noticed some very bad things with my materials now as a result or using PC. I have also wrestled with the lack of ability to duplicate batch colors perfectly and with repeatable results. Consistency is just NOT cool with me so far. But my **** is breaking now left and right so maybe that is it.

PAY ATTENTION if you start doing this:

1. For this set of instructions I used mostly harbor freight powders. There is nothing wrong with them, they seem to work fine, but temps/contaminates and other stuff WILL affect your batches.

Observe:



The two on the left were HF RED, Double coat and Single Coat. Why they came out differently I do not know. I DO know that when I tumble things, the LONGER things stay in the darker the colors are. The pill on the far right was left in the tumbler on accident for 1.6+ days. It tumbled all that time. Along with about 150 others that look like it. I am now tumbling them again with a coating of yello, hopefully they will come out nice and maybe get to be close to a glossy coating. Right now they are not even slippery. They feel like charred lead if it could be charred... My friend tumbled his stuff and he gets great BRIGHT colors, but my colors are always dark it seems... He can tumble for about 20 minutes, my digital timer starts at 1 hour. I guess I need a new one to test it out with.



TWO COATS! perhaps a contaminate got in the mix somehow. My jars are all broken now, they are frosted and have dark hues in them, ANY powder that gets tossed in them with lead comes out DARK. Just makes NO ****ing sense...



So you can see, three different batches, the first one I double coated. The nice thing is that so far it looks like you can always go put another coat on these things. Then just push them through a sizer and you are GTG! BTW, These in the photos have ALL BEEN SIZED ALREADY to .451...



So I left my tumbler on and that damn thumler rolled for ALMOST 2 days. I am glad I went out to check it out. This is the crap that I saw. This WAS yellow powder but it looked gray/black on the bullets. Now it just looks jacked. They feel charred and rough, not slick like the others do.

I need a different timer for rolling PC bullets I think...



WATCH YOUR TEMP! This foil was basically ruined. I had the temp to slightly over 400 for about 15 minutes and you can see where the foil bubbled up under the lead. DAMN that sucked. I do not care to use a different sheet every time. AINT GONNA HAPPEN. So WATCH your temps. Keep your temps to around 375-390 MAX. Once your foil bubbles up on you, BEST to toss it out or else you will get the next photo.



Yeah, go ahead and keep using your foil because you are CHEAP like me and this is what will happen AFTER your foil bubbles up, foil sticks to all things and you tear it off as you pull the bullets from the plate to get resized...

My containers are like frosted beach glass. I just wish I knew how to tumble and get lighter colors from it... I will stop in to S&F tomorrow and get some more containers. They cost me 1.49 or 2.49 each but I aint liking that I gotta buy a new one every 2000 bullets... Hmmm, maybe liners will do nicely.

Enjoy...
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Last edited by stilly; 04-18-2014 at 1:47 AM..
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