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Lead Bullets for Smokeless Rifle Cartridges

6040 Views 14 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  Quarter Cherokee
Every time I price jacketed bullets for my hunting rifles, I almost faint at how high the prices have risen! Some folks cast bullets for their BPCRs, but never give a second thought to casting for their everyday hunting rifles. High cost of jacketed bullets is reason enough to shoot lead in them, but cast bullets can be very effective on game - and accurate, too. Besides, you will shoot your centerfire rifles more frequently and become more familiar and proficient with them.

Here are a few bullets that I've cast for several of my rifles: L-R Lyman 245496 85gr GC Loverin bullet for .243, Lyman 31141 175gr GC bullet for .30-30, Lyman 311284 225gr GC bullet for .30-40, and Lyman 338237 200gr plain base bullet for .33WCF.

Photo of the three rimmed cartridges loaded for leverguns: L-R .30-40/1895 Win, .33WCF/1886 Win, .30-30/1893 Marlin.

.243 Win and the very accurate Loverin bullet:

Anybody else cast bullets for their deer rifles?

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FWIW, today I bought some 30-30 lead slugs from "Misery" (Missouri) Bullet Co. $25 for 250 165grain FPs. That's 10 cents a piece. No way I'm investing in melting/casting equipment at that price! Besides, my hourly rate is a tad too valuable to be breathing in lead fumes in search of the perfect pour! :)

Also got some of their 405 grain 45-70 slugs...$36 for 200...kinda pricey in my book, but since I was ordering 30-30 and 32-20 slugs, I figured why not. ;)

Here's Misery's website if anyone is interested:
Hey LeMat, I get really nice cast 9mm lead slugs for 4 cents each ($20/500)!! I buy em 2500 at a time (or mix n match with other calibers) that fits in a US postal "flat rate" box for $11 shipping! Ping me offline if you want this "connection" ;) !
LeMat said:
Good Lord! You're like the Clark Howard of the shooting world! :D

PM sent. ;)
Who is that?
xtimberman said:
Hey Toroflow,

I was wondering if you were shooting cast bullets in your "new" old Winchesters.

That .30 cal. Missouri bullet looks like it is a copy of the plain base Lyman/Ideal 311281. If it's cast of a good alloy, you should be able to push it to ~1600-1650fps in a rifle with a very good - fine bore. I'd start out at ~1500fps or so to see how it does.

I have a batch of casting gear and moulds, but I still buy bullets. I like to buy bullets that I shoot in high volume - such as for .30 Carbine, 9mm, and .45acp, but I save my casting sessions for bullets that are not offered commercially - and for bullets that require special alloys and special care.

I don't shoot lead in my old Winchesters YET. Soon as those .30 cal bullets arrive from Missouri Bullet, I will be loading and shooting them. I won't be pushing them beyond 1500 fps or so need. And BTW: I DO shoot lead in my Winchester & Marlin .444s, and use the same bullets meant for .44 special & mags (.429" 240 grain SWC).
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