Lee little ladel ??

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  • Last Post 24 December 2022
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2frogs posted this 14 December 2022

Has anyone tried to cast bullets with this little thing? I tried it with a single cavity and the base of the bullets were a little rounded.. I thought I was putting a lot of alloy on the spure cutter maybe not hot enough??

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Aaron posted this 14 December 2022

Looks a little delicate to me. I would strongly suggest something with more substance like this RCBS dipper.

https://www.midwayusa.com/product/1010266079?pid=283142

With rifle in hand, I confidently go forth into the darkness.

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Wm Cook posted this 14 December 2022

I started with the Lyman dipper and their 10# pot.  I tried the RotoMetal bottom pour Rowell but it was too big.  So I went back to the Lyman and stayed with that. I mostly pour 150 to 230 grain single cavity molds.  The Lyman has enough volume on 230 grain single cavity molds for the overflow back into the pot.  

But I wish I had that same pot in 20 pound capacity.  Good luck, Bill C.

Patience isn’t a virtue, it’s a delay tactic.

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pat i. posted this 14 December 2022

That Lee ladel might make a good cereal spoon but not so much for casting. Get a Lyman or better yet RCBS ladel.

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Ross Smith posted this 15 December 2022

I use mine to skim the dross.

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Aaron posted this 15 December 2022

 This RCBS dipper has enough volume to get some weight behind the pour. This video shows you what I meant by placing the dipper spout onto the mold and mating the two for the pour. Dribbling the lead into the mold with that tiny ladel you have is what is probably causing your wrinkled bullets.

?t=56

With rifle in hand, I confidently go forth into the darkness.

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Wm Cook posted this 15 December 2022

Aaron, couple questions.  

1) Have you seen the Lyman & RCBS side by side?  Which is bigger.  From the video it looks like the Lyman is a little smaller than the RCBS.

2) What’s the added value to pressure casting with the dipper?  Would you happen to know the bullet dropped weight with pressure vs without ladle pressure casting?

The video shows the generous overflow that’s allowed with the bigger cavity dipper.  Pretty important part for managing a sharp base and to manage mold temperature.   Thanks, Bill C.

Patience isn’t a virtue, it’s a delay tactic.

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2frogs posted this 15 December 2022

I have the Lyman dipper. Works great. I was just inquiring if anyone really used the little lee dipper.

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Ross Smith posted this 15 December 2022

I forgot to mention that while skimming dross the wood handle has caught fire and is charred and falls of the spoon. I also wear welding gloves doing this.

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John Alexander posted this 15 December 2022

Bill asks: "What’s the added value to pressure casting with the dipper?  Would you happen to know the bullet dropped weight with pressure vs without ladle pressure casting?

Good question. Also are the bullets more uniform in weight?  Has anybody who believes "pressure casting" helps run these simple experiments?

If pressure casting improves bullets, is using four inches of pressure (bottom pour)  better than one inch (dipper)?  

Do we know any of these answers?  Maybe we should.

John

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RicinYakima posted this 15 December 2022

I ladle cast for match rifle bullets, but bottom pour for plinkers and hunters.

I started by doing what Townsend Whelan recommended, turn mould on side, put nozzle in hole, turn upright. Works for some molds, but not for others. Some molds will not let all the air escape and I discovered air pockets in the bases while weighting bullets. These molds I hold upright over the pot and pour to the side of the hole and swirl the alloy in and let a lot run off the side. 

Other moulds make good bullets no matter how I do it.  

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Aaron posted this 16 December 2022

Aaron, couple questions.  

1) Have you seen the Lyman & RCBS side by side?  Which is bigger.  From the video it looks like the Lyman is a little smaller than the RCBS.

   The RCBS is larger.

2) What’s the added value to pressure casting with the dipper?  Would you happen to know the bullet dropped weight with pressure vs without ladle pressure casting?

   The lead in the dipper, when mated to the mold, adds weight to the pour. All 8 oz of lead are trying to force its way    into the    mold improving fill-out like using a bottom spout on the melting pot with 20 pounds of molten metal on    top of the mold. There are less voids in the bullet too. I have not weighed any since I do not "dribble" the melt into    the mold. I always mate the dipper and mold and allow the melt to dwell on top of the mold bearing its full weight    into and onto the mold. I keep the dipper at least 3/4 full.

The video shows the generous overflow that’s allowed with the bigger cavity dipper.  Pretty important part for managing a sharp base and to manage mold temperature.   Thanks, Bill C.

   I don't allow that much overflow. The weight of the melt bearing down on the cavity fills out the base just fine. I     allow a little overflow so the sprue cuts off better and doesn't stick in the cutter plate when opening the mold.

With rifle in hand, I confidently go forth into the darkness.

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Aaron posted this 16 December 2022

Bill asks: "What’s the added value to pressure casting with the dipper?  Would you happen to know the bullet dropped weight with pressure vs without ladle pressure casting?

Good question. Also are the bullets more uniform in weight?  Has anybody who believes "pressure casting" helps run these simple experiments?

   Bullets cast in this manner are very uniform. I have never had any consistency when dribble pouring and    abandoned that method immediately. I either mate the mold and the dipper - or - use the spout on the    bottom of the pot.

If pressure casting improves bullets, is using four inches of pressure (bottom pour)  better than one inch (dipper)?  

   Some of my molds REFUSE to fill out properly with the pot spout and must be dipper cast.    Most of my molds do best with the full weight of the pot over the pot spout. Molds have    personalities and prefer different feeding methods. NONE of my molds will ever fill out    properly when dribbling from a dipper.

   Some prefer the pot spout with a 1/2" gap and a fast fill but most like to be placed directly on    the pot spout, allowing the full weight of the pot to force the lead into them.

Do we know any of these answers?  Maybe we should.

   We know these answers from frustrated attempts to make a mold cast properly. We try pot    spout feeding with no gap, pot feeding with a small gap, modified cadence and    temperatures, and eventually dipper feeding with a prescribed cadence and temperature. As    I said, each mold has a personality and works best with one method or another. Of course    alloys differ among molds too and that certainly plays into the casting feeding preferences of    the molds.

   And like Richard said, some molds just simply don't care how they are fed. They cast well with    any method used. I love those molds!

   For the record, my brass molds make the most uniform bullets but care must be used with brass molds.

   \\ Aaron \\

John

With rifle in hand, I confidently go forth into the darkness.

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Wm Cook posted this 16 December 2022

Ross you killed me with the line:

 wood handle has caught fire and is charred and falls off the spoon” 

Haven’t completely healed from my knee replacement,   It hurts to laugh.   Bill.

 

Patience isn’t a virtue, it’s a delay tactic.

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Ross Smith posted this 17 December 2022

It's true.

Guess I should explain. While ladle casting with my gas turkey cooker while using part of a candle to flux the melt , the melt usually flames and chars the handle of the lee dipper. After months of doing this the charred part actally caught fire. Now the spoon part won't stay in the handle. Need to find a stick to make a new handle.

I use an rcbs ladel to actually pour.

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max503 posted this 21 December 2022

I piece of deer antler would look nice as a handle.

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Eddie Southgate posted this 23 December 2022

I use one to stir and skim with but would not waste my time trying to cast with it . I started with one of the old style Lyman ladles , it got stole. So..... I bought a new one assuming it would be the same thing, wrong , didn't like it . Bought an RCBS, didn't like it either. Got lucky and found an original Lyman nib , been happy every since.

Grumpy Old Man With A Gun......Do Not Touch .

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45 2.1 posted this 24 December 2022

Do yourself a favor and buy a Rowel bottom pour ladle (the smallest one). You get used to it and you won't pressure pour again.

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Mike H posted this 24 December 2022

I gave up on the Lyman dipper years ago when I started casting with a four cavity and later a six cavity Hensley and Gibbs mould.What I use for a dipper is a small food tin two inches in diameter and two and a half inches deep,the handle is some twisted eight gauge fencing wire,a little lip bent into the side of the tin works as a spout.

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