Sizing PC'd bullets

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max503 posted this 2 weeks ago

I'm new to this so bear with me.

Last night I coated some 168 grain SWC's.  They came out of the oven measuring around .364".  I like to size to .358.  

That's a lot of sizing.  I always heard you don't want to have to reduce a bullet by more than a couple thou.  So far I'm not having real good results at 50 yards from my Contender 357.  Wondering if this could be a factor.  

How much do you guys size your powder coated bullets?

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Spindrift posted this 2 weeks ago

I try to avoid sizing down more than 0.003".

If I have a bullet that would require more down- sizing after coating than that, I size the bullet down a bit before coating.

If pre-sizing is needed, I like to do it base- first, then size to final size nose- first, after coating. If you do both pre- and post sizing the same direction, you might get a skirt at the base.

The NOE top- punch holder, that goes in the shell-holder of your reloading press, is a brilliant tool for this purpose (and some other things, like seating stubborn gas checks).

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max503 posted this 2 weeks ago

I thought about that. Might have to try it.  Once things get back to normal I'd like to get another Lee 9mm mold.  Maybe that 120 grain TC.  I'm looking for a 357 magnum hunting bullet.

I also thought about coating some Lee 124 grain TCTL bullets.  They are a few thousandths smaller and I got a bunch cast up.

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JeffinNZ posted this 2 weeks ago

If  you use a Lee push through sizer 0.006 is easy.  I size a .278 down to .268 for my Carcano this way.  

Cheers from New Zealand

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GP Idaho posted this 2 weeks ago

Everyone has their own way but, Unless the cast bullet is known to be undersized and the powder coat is being used to bump the bullet up a bit, I always size before I coat using the Lee or Noe push through sizing tooling to the size I want the finish bullet, Then coat and size a second time. I believe this produces a rounder less distorted bullet. YMMV. Gp

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max503 posted this 2 weeks ago

I've been having good luck with unsized Lee 124 grain tumble lube truncated cone 9mm bullets.  I'm going to try PCing then sizing some of those.  Only thing is, I don't think that's a good hunting bullet design.

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GP Idaho posted this 2 weeks ago

Like most here I have a fair assortment of moulds and have all but given up on lubing any of the bullets I cast. Powder coating for me is a much better system than lube. Now I'll mention that I'm not a competitive shooter  as most here are and I have no need the trim the fine hair off that far gnat's behind so this isn't meant to start an accuracy discussion.  Just want to say that among my mould collection most are standard lube groove design with a few with the tumble lube grooves  and just three slick side no lube groove.  I really don't have a preference one style over another for coating so if you're just getting started with PC don't think you need to rush out and buy the no groove mould. If your bullet shoots well lubed it will work fine PC'd.  Gp

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Boschloper posted this 2 weeks ago

GP Idaho:

I am curious about your comment that you size, then coat, then size again. Do you put any kind of lube on the bullets the first time thru the sizer?  I would think the bare bullets would gall in the sizing die.  Do you think this gives you a more accurate bullet?  I coat as cast then size in a home made push thru sizer.

Wayne

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GP Idaho posted this 2 weeks ago

 

Boschloper:  I rarely use any lube when sizing bullets through a push through die or bushing and never any form of greasy lube if I plan on PCing the bullet, If a lube must be used to prevent bullet distortion, I use Dawn dish soap as it can be removed with just water. The reason I size before coating is to weed out any bullets that may have dropped from the mould a bit undersized, this being felt as the bullet slips too easily through the die. Also in my opinion and depending on the quality of the die or bushing it MAY help round an oval shaped bullet. Then, With the second sizing after coating and adding a thousandth or two (in my unproven theory) you have a rounder bullet. Gp

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Sonnyk posted this 1 weeks ago

I cast a lot of .30

Since my casts are 20 BHN they are hard to push through the die, even in my rock chucker supreme.

So I size the bare bullets after casting in either a Lee, push through sizing die nose first. 

Then I apply the gas check, T.30 .012 AL, Pat Marlin check maker, and push that through nose first.  Sizing before applying the gas check prevents distortion and makes pushing the hard cast through easier.

The casts are then tub rolled with Eastman PC in a #5 tub and each is picked out with a pair of needle nose pliers, pliers are tapped on the side of the tub to remove excess and each is stood on it's base on a non stick Teflon baking sheet.

After curing the PC coated bullets are pushed again through the die.  Sometimes I use a little dish soap in water to prevent sticking.

Before loading I run the base on each one around a sheet of fine sandpaper to remove any excess PC pushed down by the die after the last sizing.

And load.

 

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4and1 posted this 1 weeks ago

I size with the GC base first, so the pressure is always pushing the check on, and my setup has a stop rod at the end of stroke that ensures the check is seated hard and square. 

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max503 posted this 5 days ago

Been doing some work on this.  The only bullet that has given me acceptable accuracy results is a bullet that drops .357-.358 out of the mold.  That would be my Lee 124 grain TLTC bullet designed for the 9mm.

I've also tried my Lee 168 grain semi-wadcutter, and the Lee 105 grain semi wadcutter.  Both of these bullets must be sized before being shot from any of my guns when conventionally lubed.

The 124 grain TLTC bullet measures around .359, powder coated.  I then size it to .358 and it shoots good out of my 10" Contender barrel.  So it only gets sized once, very lightly.  I can shoot that bullet unsized in all my guns except for a 380 that I used to have.

Those semi-wadcutters come out of the toaster oven measuring well into the .360's.   Sizing them down to .358 and shooting them at 50 yards gives me groups about the size of a toaster oven.  

I could have easily covered the 50 yard groups I shot today with those 124's with my phone.  All this shooting was done with iron sights from a rest.

I believe it hurts a bullet to size it too much.  The 124 is the one on the right.  These were all cast from the same alloy.

The semi-wadcutters shot fine out of my Taurus 357 revolver at 7 and 10 yards. 

Long story short - I will be using 9mm molds for powder coating my 38/357 loads.  

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