how do we........

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Ross Smith posted this 18 September 2022

Right now in Utah hunters are sighting in their modern muzzleloaders, at up to $5 per shot. I try to get some to cast their own and either paper patch or grease lube. But no, not a single convert yet. The same with recreational target shooters. Most don't-won't reload let alone switch to cast bullets. I've even offered to do the work for them. I do have one friend in town that has switched to casting his own, but can't get him to join the CBA.

 

So how do we get our message out?

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Ed Harris posted this 18 September 2022

At the risk of getting political, the brainwashing of our youth, the destruction of work ethic, developing a dependent welfare class, driving instant gratification while supply issues and pure greed drive the cost of shooting beyond the means of working class people is the plan. Discourage hunting and shooting so that the young won't carry the torch. Then wait for the Baby Boomers to die off and there will be no one left who cares. The young will suck the government teat and inherit their Socialist utopia. No further comment along these lines. Dave delete if this crossed the line.

73 de KE4SKY In Home Mix We Trust From the Home of Ed's Red in "Almost Heaven" West Virginia

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RicinYakima posted this 19 September 2022

No, I think the four letter word is "time". There is tremendous pressure on people under 40 to be "social" every spare minute. 

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sluggo posted this 20 September 2022

I think another factor in the lack of participation is how post boomers have been taught in school. I worked at a large (2500 student) high school. By the time i retired all the blue collar shop classes were gone. The new gen kids were geared toward white collar careers. They are unfamilar with tools and would rather work with what they know.

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JeffinNZ posted this 18 September 2022

I think the point is being missed here. 

Why would those casual shooters have any interest in the CBA?  They clearly have the means to buy ammo.  You can't instill curiosity in those that are not curious.  Further, that they don't want to pursue our interests is no failing on their part.  

Kind of akin to knocking those that drink beer but don't brew it themselves.

Cheers from New Zealand

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sergeant69 posted this 20 September 2022

somewhat off topic but not much............

on a FB site a guy was showing off a chair he got for his kid to sit in and hunt this year from. elk and deer. it had an articulating arm with a rifle rest for butt and forearm and the rifle had a waaay too long bbl. big scope. was being fawned over by others comments. wished they had a chair like that. i disagreed, saying how putting that thing in a luxury blind wasn't hunting. he got pissed and said he will do anything, whatever it takes, to ensure his kid gets a deer and elk on his first hunt. i very briefly related how my first hunt actually entailed climbing a mountain predawn, being shown how to track, be patient, quiet etc etc. and how to enjoy the outdoors part of it regardless of success. actual hunting. he went ballistic, asked how did i expect a SIX year old to hold a .243 rifle by himself, without a rest. went down hill from there. others chimed in accusing me of being a bitter old man living in an outdated world with no concept of how things worked in the modern world. the outdoors/nature part of it being totally ignored. only one guy agreed said how you needed to be able to hold and shoot a gun unaided before going hunting. then it got personal. same old story. when you your argument fails start the name calling and insults. anyhow....THIS above all else brought home how nowdays everyone gets a trophy, instant gratification, the less effort the better, etc. all the above posts about diminishing interest in reloading, casting, et all is adding to a bleak future for the sport. however, if you're a gangbanger in a blue state/city  ur good!

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RicinYakima posted this 18 September 2022

Not disagreeing with anything Aaron says, but my perspective is that almost all people under the age of 50 want to be looking at an electronic screen and being entertained or "shooting" outside. Shooting means buying loaded ammo on the credit card and banging it away as fast as possible. 

And the expense of money and time to reload, especially cast bullets, is not getting better. I have a machinist acquaintance, who says he can work two hours overtime and make enough to buy 200 rounds of 9MM and shoot all afternoon, why would I reload my own?

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Lee Guthrie posted this 19 September 2022

JEFF, maybe exactly what you said.  I LOVE to brew my own, preferably all grain.  Besides enjoying the end product, I get the same satisfaction from the home brewed beer as I do from my cast bullet handloads.

Unfortunately, I am an aging Boomer, and I fear that Ed is correct.  frown

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Idahocaster posted this 19 September 2022

I'm 45, so I expect that puts me on the younger end of the CBA membership spectrum. I started casting about 12 years ago. I had a great shooting and casting mentor (my grandpa) who introduced me to reloading and casting. Without his encouragement and help I probably wouldn't have ever started. Now I admit I am odd for my generation. I don't care for semi autos, rifles or handguns. Give me a revolver, lever gun, or bolt action any day. Point is, we need to be willing to share. Not everyone will be interested, but some will.

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RicinYakima posted this 20 September 2022

I love to share may experiences with bullet casting, until their eyes roll back into their heads.big_grin

 

My shooting buddy, Joe and I were practicing for postal matches about 20 years ago. The guy at the end of the line was shooting jacketed bullets in some type of fancy new hunting rifle. While he was scoping out our targets, he introduced himself and could not believe we were shooting mod-iron military rifles with smaller groups than he was doing with a $1000 outfit. Joe let him shoot his 1891 Mauser and ammo and the new guy shot his smallest group of the day. He ended up shooting cast bullets for ten years and is a loyal CBA member.

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Glaciers posted this 25 September 2022

Well I don’t know about the defeatist attitude in some posts, but I certainly understand where it comes from.  Ed Harris is right on the money about the powers that be doing everything they can to make it difficult to participate in shooting and reloading.  
But of the last year or two I have sold off a lot of reloading components that when I thought about my life span, I couldn’t use unless I turned this hobby into a job.  The reloading tools and molds I was not using and did not want to use sold for good prices which allowed me to reinvest in new molds from semi custom makers so it was good for me.  But quite a few people buying wanted to get into reloading and some of course were reloaders already.  I didn’t gouge but I didn’t have to give stuff away either.  One very important often overlooked benefit is a fair amount of freed up space which allowed for organization of a smaller reloading space.

I am personally dismayed when I look at gun shows in my travels where almost every table is black guns.  I just like to put my fingerprints on wood and blue steel.  I do enjoy the semi autos, but the change from hitting your target and spray and pray shooters is difficult for a old school guy to understand.  Yes it’s fun, but, then your out of ammo and your target might still be a virgin.

My two nephews like to empty mags in rapid order here on my range, but I’ve got them collecting brass and they are getting interested in bolt guns because they have figured out that a 223 isn’t a big game caliber. So there’s hope, I’m working on them.

But on a good note of a direction for myself is I will be spending time with my Son and 3 grandkids ages 8 to 12 in the lower 48 in winter times.  This will be a winter snowbird project as I will not be anywhere but in Alaska on the homestead in the warmer months.. Home and heaven.  

I will be setting up a reloading bench (bench is already there and unused) and have joined a very nice gun club and range about 10 miles from their house.  I have a couple of bolt action 22’s and a few other youngster/beginner firearms which will be put to use along with proper training and respect for making that bullet count and hitting the target.  I suspect that some in family competition will come of this.  That’s my intention and a small part of guiding youngsters into our sport.  Not being proactive to bring the next generation in, is a mistake.  I know some here already do that, but, some get with drawn because of the uneducated narrative that’s prevalent today.  But, only you can promote the respect our sport deserves.

Trust me, I’m a loner, but this is also an opportunity for me to come out and do something.  I do a lot of reloading, casting, and shooting by myself.  Got to pass on what I know, besides, I’ve got great grandkids.

 

 

 

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Waleone posted this 18 September 2022

 Ed, sadly you are 100% correct!

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hporter posted this 19 September 2022

I think another factor limiting the interest in reloading is the high cost of components. Primers and powder are very expensive at the moment.  And not necessarily readily available.

We cast, so the cost of projectiles can be mitigated. But someone new to the hobby would have to pay dearly for factory projectiles, if they can find them.

It must be difficult right now for a young person or a person of meager means, to try to budget for a reloading press, a scale, and dies and with prices of the equipment such as they are.  Not to mention a melting furnace, molds and sizers if they were to try out casting their own.

I joined the CBA to support an organization that supports a hobby I love.  I don't shoot in the competitions, but the wealth of information on this forum and in the Fouling Shot is well worth the cost of the membership alone.

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SkinnerD posted this 23 September 2022

(Continued)

My son, in his 40s watches with interest. But with a young family, a busy corporate life and a working wife, not to mention a heavy mortgage, he simply does not have time to shoot enough rounds to warrant reloading let alone casting. Like the guy re the overtime, the justification to take either up is not a monetary one, irrespective of the price of ammo. He can afford to buy what he needs, if its available.

There are only a couple of reasons to reload and cast that I see as relevant.

For reloading Pistol you have to be shooting high volumes to get a financial return. Otherwise you will reload because you love doing it or because its the only way you can get the ammo you need. Perhaps one other reason. In our country over the counter ammo purchases are recorded. Nuff said.

For rifle, few people who don't compete put enough lead downrange to warrant reloading - no matter the cost of a box of ammo. If you don’t get thru 20 rds a year why would you? In that respect there is another discussion to be had as to how effective a shooter/hunter you can be with that amount of time on the trigger but another day for that. And for those who do compete, even with the high current prices of ammo, if you are in well paid employment, its just a cost of your sport. Golfers don't make their own golf balls.

So the real driver for reloading comes from the perceived benefits. Cost if you shoot high volume, or, if you are cash poor but time rich. Availability if you can't buy off the shelf or if you are chasing decimal points in MOA. After that the only thing left is fascination. I reload and I will cast mostly because it fascinates me.

Historically, the broad interest and engagement in reloading, and casting was driven by something I grew up with as a Baby Boomer and which changed dramatically for us along the way. That is the balance between having cash and having time. My adult life has mostly been cash rich and time poor compared to my parents and grandparents and the prior generations. Those are the generations that were the heyday of doing it yourself. Nothing was made in China and Made in Japan was synonymous with cheap and nasty. I grew up with the term "Jap Crap" How the world has changed. Back then, if you didn't or couldn't make it you often didn't have it. Lee Loaders, the Lyman 310 Tong Tool, etc are examples of products that allowed cash poor, time rich folk to make the means to put meat on the table. Literally many thousands of them. And for many that was the only way they could get meat. By hunting nd by hunting with roll yer owns. Again, how the world has changed. Lee Loaders pushed out of the way by cling wrap and upsized burgers with fries.

The world tends to work in cycles of a sort. Perhaps our task is not to recruit the unrecruitable but to preserve the knowhow.

I have a bunch of grandkids, all but one are boys and the eldest are now 15. I take them all shooting and hunting. The interest waxes and wanes with the exception of a 9yr old who is besotted and sits at my reloading bench maki g ammo for his dad. A couple of them I suspect will move on to other things and are unlikely to come back to it. But at least its within their horizons. The girl is a hot prospect. The pig in the pen is not a pig to her, its bacon! The feral goat is just another kind of lamb roast! Some of them are too young right now but they will get their chance.

Interestingly a couple of young tradies who did some work for me and who hunt a couple of times a year asked me to load for them. I made the bench available and had them roll their own. Hooked! A mate from Uni days, a few years younger than me, and finallyb retiring, put his hand up for help to buy a couple of new rifles including his first deer rifle, a 7mm08. He has some cast and some jacketed ammo from me to put thru it on his first range visit. And bought his first jugs of powder.

But who knows. A little here, a little there. Bread on the waters. And a forum like this plays a huge part in preserving the knowledge, furthering the sport.

Cheers J.

PS. Dinner tonight was Shepherd's Pie made with slow roast Goat Shoulder cooked in gravy beans, carrots, garlic and onion, meat pulled and returned with layer of frozen peas, corn and garden spinach all topped with a mashed potato crust sprinkled with grated cheese and ground pepper then baked for 30 min. From hill to table, a young nanny, neck shot at 65m with a hand loaded 223 from a Ruger Ranch II. (A cast bullet from my 44-40 next year I hope). Yum!

John - New Zealand

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Lucky1 posted this 29 September 2022

Everyone here has a different path on how they get started with cast. A few years ago, I had a couple of friends over to my range for a Sunday afternoon session. One was shooting cast and the other one a newer shoot who reloaded jacketed. He fired a handful of those while we shot about 150 cast rounds for the same money. After a couple of sessions like that, it didn't take long for the newer shooter to realize that we were having more fun for the bucks and shooting pretty well too. So he took the plunge and bought a pot and lead, set up in my shop and borrowed some of my molds to get started. A couple of years later and now he goes to CBA shoots and has learned a lot in the process while adding molds and accouterments to his stash. A few weeks ago a neighbor asked about casting for his 45 Colt so here we go again. Yes, it's one at a time but they are much younger than me so hopefully there is a future and certainly worth my time. Second thought. I'm not retired yet so I feel the time crunch too. It does take dedication to cast, size and lube, reload with extra steps; and even research those loads because sometimes data is limited. I'm sure it takes me several hours to produce a 50 rd box of quality ammo if figured from sitting down at the pot to closing the box lid the final time. Most people consider pulling the trigger the fun part, not reloading per se. I will confess my weird outlook that casting and reloading is therapeutic because I can suppress work and life related stresses by putting them in the background while I do it. Plus I take pride in a job well done when the target looks good and realize it's my handiwork. I'm also old enough to not spend several hours a day on social media so I can head to the reloading bench instead. Yes, there are always obstacles but I prefer to focus on what I can do to overcome them.

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Tom Acheson posted this 10 October 2022

The old phrase.....look for reasons to do things, stop looking for reasons not to do things.

Tom

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Duane Mellenbruch posted this 10 October 2022

My concern about folks that learn from the internet means that they watched videos and some are quite misleading.  The basic books that we often refer to are well written and critically reviewed by knowledgeable casters after placed for sale.  While the Lyman Cast Bullet Handbooks may have some limitations, it puts a lot of information right in one area along with some great proven reloading data. 

I was taught from books and magazines and at times did have a steep learning experience. Take note that I am not saying all Internet videos are questionable, just that a new caster does not know when to take information cautiously.  The most common comment made when the forum members realize that the person is new to casting is to be careful but have fun.  And if something planned is likely to cause injury, speak up and give a warning.  

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Eutectic posted this 3 weeks ago

I love the current situation, at the matches and at the range other shooters hand me their nice once fired factory brass! When I get to the range the ground is frequently littered with brass. I get a sore back from picking it up. 

Most of the pistol shooters have a Dillon and feed it jacketed bullets. If they use fired cases most of them buy sized, cleaned and prepped cases. There is only one other shooter who competes with me for brass, most shooters are not interested in sorting cleaning etc. 

Expensive? Yes, my casting rig is expensive, but the cost was spread over 40 years. I started out with a mold, ladle an old pot and a camp stove. Today I would buy a LEE mold, LEE push-thru sizer and LEE Liquid Alox. An electric hot-plate and an old kitchen pot from the thrift store would work just fine. This would probably cost less than 1000 factory-cast bullets, certainly a lot less than 1000 jacketed. 

I have tried to interest the shooters using factory cast bullets in learning to cast, no responses to my invitations to come see how easy it is. 

Steve

 

 

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Duane Mellenbruch posted this 3 weeks ago

Could be that folks go to the range with limited time, and have already decided that it takes too much time to do the casting and bullet prep and then do the reloading in addition to that.  Given the apparent ages you mentioned, they are too old to just try it and have fun.  Perhaps we see more opportunity with youngsters, who do have a short attention span, but a lot less obligations that take their interest away.

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Aaron posted this 18 September 2022

I don't know that we can anymore. We have been branded and labeled by a socialist media as domestic terrorists, gun loving murderers, rednecks, racists, and other vile things - all of which are not true. Look at the advertising alone in the American Rifleman. What used to be a father and son at the reloading bench promoting the hobby has been replaced by the tattooed, bearded, "operator" promoting firepower and machismo.

The younger generation has no time for hobby. They want immediate gratification through an online purchase on Amazon. Have the bullets shipped. No casting for them. Those that decided to try to cast gave up when they boogered something up and leaded their barrels horribly with an incorrect alloy. They learned their hobby through online "experts" whilst doing the TicToc dance.

At the range, I am a dinosaur. When I load cast bullets into my M44 Moisin Nagant, I can see the other shooters grinning and cringing. Those who do ask and I inform them that with a proper alloy and reduced pressure, the barrel will not be leaded, smile and walk away in apparent disbelief.

We no longer have any prime time sportsman shows on national television. The Olympic shooting events are NEVER televised. There are no more intramural school shooting teams or leagues. Shooting and all things shooting related are now classified as terrorist activity engaged in only by domestic terrorists or radical right wing supporters.

Tools of the trade are only now becoming available again on the market but at significantly higher prices. Reloading now, like SCUBA, is becoming an upper middle-class activity. My LGS used to carry all kinds of reloading powders. My last can of Unique was purchased for $15.99 at Scheels. The other day I ordered 2 pounds of Unique from MidwayUSA, one of the only online places to get it. At $119.45 for two pounds, that works out to $60 per pound. Online purchases mean shipping, hazmat fee, tax, and of course the product charge. You can safely assume those will be the last two pounds of powder I buy online.

Prices like these will SEVERELY restrict who can reload. The loss of wheel weight lead will restrict those who cast bullets. I have no desire to cast zinc bullets or pay exorbitant prices for bullet alloy shipped to my doorstep. If you are one of the few fortunate people who live next to a powder factory or a lead mine, good for you. Most of us have to have it shipped to our country estate. 

The cost of goods is one thing but I do not sense the willingness to "roll your own" in the younger generations. They want to buy it and they want it right now.

Now I will relate something funny. I have decided to roll my own English cartridges like those highlighted in Brett Gibbons book The English Cartridge. I had to order 100% rag paper online and did so. The description on the paper never mentioned the fact that this very expensive paper was graph paper. Now my 1853 Enfield paper cartridges are made with 100% rag graph paper. I can't wait to get these on the range and explain to those that are interested that in 1860, the English used graph paper for their cartridges! innocent

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NH_Jim posted this 18 September 2022

 One method that has worked for me it to demonstrate the destructive power of a muzzleloader on an everyday item such as a plasma TV.  A muzzleoader will blow a big hole through a plasma TV. (I know ... can't shoot items on the range ...). As you know a high velocity round will go through most items with little fanfare.  A lead slug from a muzzleoader ... Bam ... big hole - lost of mess.  That sales pitch works.  From there you lead them by the hand down the road of muzzleoading and then casting.  All of the people I got into casting did so because the big bore slugs are not available much anymore.  It takes a year or two of mentoring but they get hooked. Casting bullets under .50 cal come later, once they are into casting.  One person at a time.  Just my two cents.

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