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Very Hot Topic (More than 25 Replies) Brass Molds. (Read 6981 times)
DWT1885
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Brass Molds.
Mar 15th, 2015 at 11:25am
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To the guys that are using brass molds, do you like them better than the iron type ? Thanks, Dale.
  

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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #1 - Mar 15th, 2015 at 11:46am
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Nothing wrong with a Brass Mold.....
  
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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #2 - Mar 15th, 2015 at 12:15pm
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I have a couple of brass molds made by a fellow named Bevridge.  One is a tapered 33 cal the other for a 44 cal Sharps.  I've used both for over thirty years with good results.  Same for my iron/steel molds.  I can't tell much difference.
  
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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #3 - Mar 15th, 2015 at 12:53pm
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I like them both!

Terry
  

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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #4 - Mar 15th, 2015 at 6:00pm
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They hold heat like iron and resist rust like aluminum.  The interior finish tends to be less prone to tool marks than cavities in iron moulds.

The only downside I see is that some makers use a lot of brass to make their moulds out of, so they tend to be bigger and heavier than they need to be.
  
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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #5 - Mar 15th, 2015 at 6:52pm
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I have a couple of Accurate Moulds brass bullet moulds.
They are heavy, but the bullets are just beautiful.
The best thing to do is get a CabineTree locking handle so the grip-handle is smaller to hold.  I always set the mould down to let it cool so I do not have to hold it continuously.

Keep on hav'n fun
MikeT
  
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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #6 - Mar 15th, 2015 at 7:34pm
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I have an old Ideal that someone relined with brass and cut to the same caliber again. It's a .32-40 mold, and casts a nice bullet. Bought it years ago, just because I thought it was nicely done, but cast thousands of bullets with it since then.
  

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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #7 - Mar 15th, 2015 at 11:36pm
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Marlin,  Can you tell how the brass insert is attached? Have tried to silver solder the insert but is about as much work as making new blocks.
Chuck
  
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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #8 - Mar 16th, 2015 at 12:52am
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[quote author=7357555B6A3E0 link=1426433143/5#5 date=1426459944]I have a couple of Accurate Moulds brass bullet moulds.
They are heavy, but the bullets are just beautiful.
The best thing to do is get a CabineTree locking handle so the grip-handle is smaller to hold.  I always set the mould down to let it cool so I do not have to hold it continuously

I have 3 single cavity brass moulds from Accurate and they all cast beautiful bullets.  I think being heavy is what makes them cast consistent bullets once they are up to temp and running well.  I set the mould on a block of wood next to the pot while the sprue is cooling.  Takes some of the weight off my forearm.

JS

  

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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #9 - Mar 16th, 2015 at 6:22am
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Small blocks can also cast pretty well - one of my best-casting moulds has small blocks, and it casts very well.  It is for a PP bullet, though, so that will help too...
But I do prefer brass moulds to iron, they xon't rust and tend to be better at bullet-releasing
  
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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #10 - Mar 16th, 2015 at 10:13am
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Chuckster wrote on Mar 15th, 2015 at 11:36pm:
Marlin,  Can you tell how the brass insert is attached? Have tried to silver solder the insert but is about as much work as making new blocks.
Chuck


I can't see any sign of how they're attached. It's such a tight fit between the blocks and the brass insert that I can't see any sign of silver solder or adhesives? I have wondered how they were held also, and figured it must be soldered, as heat would make most adhesives eventually let go.
  

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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #11 - Mar 16th, 2015 at 11:39am
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Thanks guys. Think I will try one from Accurate. Dale.
  

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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #12 - Mar 16th, 2015 at 11:55am
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marlinguy wrote on Mar 16th, 2015 at 10:13am:
Chuckster wrote on Mar 15th, 2015 at 11:36pm:
Marlin,  Can you tell how the brass insert is attached? Have tried to silver solder the insert but is about as much work as making new blocks.
Chuck


I can't see any sign of how they're attached. It's such a tight fit between the blocks and the brass insert that I can't see any sign of silver solder or adhesives? I have wondered how they were held also, and figured it must be soldered, as heat would make most adhesives eventually let go.


I've wondered too, how did the old timers line those iron molds to re-cut them.
I doubt even silver solder would hold for long, considering the temps used for casting.
My thinking was that the iron had cavities machined out, then filled back in with  a closely fitting brass slug that was brazed in.
Brazing requires temps close to 1000 degrees, so it is far in excess of lead melting points.
Either that, or they are entirely composed of brazing material.
But I doubt you could achieve absolute purity and solidarity with that much brazing.
  

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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #13 - Mar 16th, 2015 at 12:42pm
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The brass relines that I know about are dovetailed into the mold blocks, like those made by Schoyen. I have one that was done that way, also. It's a Winchester mold and the dovetailed brass is tight into the mold halfs but, there is a short set screw added from the outside to aid in holding, also.

An advatage to that is that you can make a bullet, longer than the orignal block.

Frank
  

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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #14 - Mar 16th, 2015 at 12:47pm
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This is a pic of one of the best, highest quality, molds I've ever owned. I believe in was made in Los Angeles about 1940 by Fielding B. Hall. Each chamber has a brass liner;
« Last Edit: Mar 16th, 2015 at 8:51pm by Schutzenbob »  
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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #15 - Mar 16th, 2015 at 1:02pm
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That's quite a mold, Bob. I think I'd have to do some weight lifting to be able to use it Smiley

Have you weighed it, full of lead?

How are the cavity inserts held in it?

Frank
  

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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #16 - Mar 16th, 2015 at 1:08pm
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frnkeore wrote on Mar 16th, 2015 at 12:42pm:
The brass relines that I know about are dovetailed into the mold blocks, like those made by Schoyen. I have one that was done that way, also. It's a Winchester mold and the dovetailed brass is tight into the mold halfs but, there is a short set screw added from the outside to aid in holding, also.

An advatage to that is that you can make a bullet, longer than the orignal block.

Frank

Of course ! That makes sense.
dovetailing would provide a mechanical means  of locking the insert in place providing it was a press fit.
So, then how did they accurately close the two halves over the cherry ????

  

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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #17 - Mar 17th, 2015 at 5:59am
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A friend of mine in the USA wanted a PP Bullet for his Martini Henry 577/450 rifle. Now he is a sensible chap and won't buy anything if he can make it himself. So from somewhere he obtained a damaged Lyman bullet mould, set it up in a four jaw chuck on his lathe, made a 'D bit' and bored out all of the original bullet shape.

Then separating the moulds he proceeded to braze up the interior of the two halved using a Low Fuming Bronze brazing rod and a very good quality flux to ensure that there was good adhesion between the two different metals. Once cool all surplus bronze was removed and the blocks united and returned and centred in his four jaw chuck. Another 'D bit' was ground to the contour he wanted on the bullet. This bit was used to bore out the mould to the dia., he required. Finally the vent lines were scribed into the bronze to lie up with the originals. It works really well and cost only a few Dollars to do. Smiley
Pictures to follow.
Harry

« Last Edit: Mar 17th, 2015 at 6:25am by harry_eales »  
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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #18 - Mar 17th, 2015 at 11:59am
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Harry, I think your friend did an outstanding job, and that might well be what was done to my mold! Mine don't have the small dovetail added at the bottom though.
The mold I have appears to also be thicker brass surface, and maybe when it was brazed, the cavity was filled completely to prepare for recutting the mold? It looks like the recess in my mold measures almost 1/2" wide, so it was drilled out pretty large prior to fitting the brass.
  

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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #19 - Mar 17th, 2015 at 12:30pm
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harry_eales wrote on Mar 17th, 2015 at 5:59am:
A friend of mine in the USA wanted a PP Bullet for his Martini Henry 577/450 rifle. Now he is a sensible chap and won't buy anything if he can make it himself. So from somewhere he obtained a damaged Lyman bullet mould, set it up in a four jaw chuck on his lathe, made a 'D bit' and bored out all of the original bullet shape.

Then separating the moulds he proceeded to braze up the interior of the two halved using a Low Fuming Bronze brazing rod and a very good quality flux to ensure that there was good adhesion between the two different metals. Once cool all surplus bronze was removed and the blocks united and returned and centred in his four jaw chuck. Another 'D bit' was ground to the contour he wanted on the bullet. This bit was used to bore out the mould to the dia., he required. Finally the vent lines were scribed into the bronze to lie up with the originals. It works really well and cost only a few Dollars to do. Smiley
Pictures to follow.
Harry


Very nice work indeed.
I would have been concerned with gas voids in the braze, but your friend certainly nailed it.Not a gas or slag pocket in sight.

Regards
  

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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #20 - Mar 17th, 2015 at 1:03pm
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Marlinguy,
I think the filled hole at the bottom of the mould may have been for a hollow pointing plug for the original calibre.

GP,
My friend has over 50 years experience in metalworking. To say he is exceptional would be an understatement. Dammit, I'd love to have his workshop. As far as I am aware he has no CNC machines or EDM machines, like me he is a handle cranker, I just wish I was half as good as him. Cry  He hopes to retire this year and then I expect to see some beautiful creations emerge from junk actions he already has or will acquire. Shocked
Harry
  
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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #21 - Mar 17th, 2015 at 3:46pm
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That is some fine work. We forget the "Old Guys" did not have a vertical mill to knock out a new mold, nor a gas torch to fill the recess. The dovetail, as Frank suggested, could be cut with a file or hand shaper. Wonder if they put the blocks in the forge with fire clay dams and filled the cavity with spelter (brass chips) and flux and essentially, cast the insert in place. Would take some skill, but they had it and easier than making a new mold.
Chuck
  
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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #22 - Mar 25th, 2019 at 9:28pm
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This is a mold with brass inserts. I've owned two of these, the other was smaller and cast a short tapered 32 bullet, I assume that they were made by Schoyen or Peterson in Denver. This mold casts a 192 grain 32 bullet with a .328 base;
« Last Edit: Mar 25th, 2019 at 11:02pm by Schutzenbob »  
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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #23 - Mar 26th, 2019 at 12:58am
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'Bob,
Thanks for bringing this post back up, this bit about the brass inserts is interesting AND it brought an old friend back to our memory, I miss Harry and what he'd bring to the forum.
Dale, how is the brass mold treating you?
  

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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #24 - Mar 26th, 2019 at 7:20am
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Hey GT, Ordered one from Accurate Molds just a week ago for my Hepburn. So about another 2 week wait. Will let you know. Dale.
  

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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #25 - Mar 26th, 2019 at 9:03am
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I have this mold on loan to try in my 28-30. It would seem that Pope used a groove in the insert to locate  and then a screw to lock the insert in place .
Dales
  
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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #26 - Mar 26th, 2019 at 9:13am
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I'll bet you will have it this week. I have ordered molds from Accurate and had them in hand in 5 days. He has his act together for lead time reduction.....which was my career. I would love to see the operation. ALL my Accurate brass molds are the most predictable molds that I own.
  
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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #27 - Mar 26th, 2019 at 10:17am
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Since this post was originally started I bought a Ballard Long Range #7 in .44-100 Ballard that came with an Old West nose pour adjustable base mold. It can vary from as heavy as 535 gr. down to around 475 gr. weight. Bullets drop nicely from the mold, and look great. I doubt I'll use it as it's a paper patch mold and I don't plan on going that direction. But I wanted to try it out to see the weight difference the adjustment has.

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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #28 - Mar 26th, 2019 at 11:50am
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I tend to lean towards brass molds if given the chance, the one's I've made from brass tend to turn out the best too.  I'm using one I made recently to make core's for a PP bullet for a 44-85, I notice this one is very temperature specific on a given day, varies only about 5 degrees or less (according to the PID controller) where the bullet ends up with flash when it's too hot and voids when it's too cool.  My iron and aluminum don't seem to be quite as picky but they don't cast nearly as pretty a bullet either...
Greg
  

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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #29 - Mar 26th, 2019 at 12:16pm
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I love that .28 cal. mold Dales! Very cool!
  

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Reply #30 - Mar 26th, 2019 at 12:18pm
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I prefer Brass and I make my blocks 11/4 wide X 1 in depth X 1 1/14 high. The balance makes them very comfortable to use, they heat up fast and they hold the heat well. There is just enough room for the bullet cavity to be centered between the alignment pins.

Below is a Barry Darr Insert Mould workmanship is flawless and the best I have seen. Inserts are 25, 28, 32 and if memory serves me right 40 or possibly 35 his favorite being 35-40.

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Reply #31 - Mar 26th, 2019 at 12:38pm
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And those I make for myself this one showing the use of four alignment pins. 11/4 wide X 1 in depth X 1 1/14 high

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Reply #32 - Mar 26th, 2019 at 4:10pm
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Dales' loaner mould is the first Pope "universal" I've ever seen actually being used.  I am deeply envious!

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Reply #33 - Mar 26th, 2019 at 4:29pm
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The Pope mold is easy to use , the auto sprue cut off and bullet ejection are great advancements to bad they are not made by anyone today.
Dales
  
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Reply #34 - Mar 26th, 2019 at 4:32pm
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Dales wrote on Mar 26th, 2019 at 4:29pm:
The Pope mold is easy to use , the auto spue cut off and bullet ejection are great advancements to bad they are not made by anyone today.
Dales


Some features of that Pope mold look similar to Browning's loading tool he sold to Marlin. But the Browning/Marlin 1881 tool did more than just cast bullets.
I've never seen that particular Pope tool for sale. Seen them in displays, but that's all.
  

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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #35 - Apr 2nd, 2019 at 10:35pm
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I notice JLouis makes single cavity moulds which I like, be it brass or iron. My neighbor, who is a very knowledge bullet caster with years of experience, ordered a two cavity brass mold for a 30 caliber rifle. The bullets always shrunk noticeably on one side. That was the side nearest the other cavity. The bullets ended up off balance and wouldn't shoot worth a hoot. It was a well made mould that he fooled around with for weeks before he just gave up. He changed alloys, changed temperature, changed flux, and anything else he could think of. We concluded it must have had something to do with the cooling rate of the alloy as it related to the brass in the mould. I have brass single cavity moulds from the same maker that cast beautiful bullets so the problems of the double cavity remains a bit of a mystery.

JS
  

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Reply #36 - Apr 2nd, 2019 at 11:04pm
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JS, Did he try both cavities casting only one at a time?
  

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Reply #37 - Apr 3rd, 2019 at 11:03pm
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He tried that and everything else he could think of. He cast just the front cavity and just the rear one. The bullets still came out shrunken in the middle directly opposite of the opposing cavity. His iron two cavity molds don't yield the same results. He cast some bullets in a couple of his iron molds to see if he had similar problems which he didn't. To quote Jerry Garcia, "What a long strange trip it's been."

JS
  

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Reply #38 - Apr 4th, 2019 at 3:45am
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Interesting. I have a 2 cavity .33 brass mold, but I haven't tried it yet.  Wish me luck!  Cheesy
  

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Reply #39 - Apr 4th, 2019 at 7:37pm
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Schuetzenmiester wrote on Apr 4th, 2019 at 3:45am:
Interesting. I have a 2 cavity .33 brass mold, but I haven't tried it yet. Wish me luck! Cheesy


It will be interesting to hear of your results. Let us know after you've cast a few.

JS
  

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Reply #40 - Apr 4th, 2019 at 9:26pm
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Has anyone noticed the "one side shrinking" on
multiple cavity Aluminum molds?
beltfed/arnie
  
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Reply #41 - Apr 5th, 2019 at 1:56am
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I had a issue with one of my NOE, brass, DC molds. It took a while to over come it but, it's good now. But, as I remember, it was just overall fill out (like a cold mold) and not on one side. I also didn't cast just one cavity.

I believe that it was a result of casting in the mold (was in a hurry to check the bullets), before cleaning it, as recommended in the NOE instructions.

I scrubbed it with Boraxo and dish soap, using a heavy nylon brush (not tooth brush) 5 or 6 times and run heat cycles, using both, alloy and a hot plate. It finally came around.

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Schuetzenmiester
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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #42 - Apr 5th, 2019 at 2:34am
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JS47 wrote on Apr 4th, 2019 at 7:37pm:
Schuetzenmiester wrote on Apr 4th, 2019 at 3:45am:
Interesting. I have a 2 cavity .33 brass mold, but I haven't tried it yet. Wish me luck! Cheesy


It will be interesting to hear of your results. Let us know after you've cast a few.

JS


I will try to get in gear and try it in the next couple weeks.  Got my curiosity up now  Undecided  It is a NOE mold. Who was your neighbor's mold maker?
  

"some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence
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Chuckster
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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #43 - Apr 5th, 2019 at 10:28am
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.33 two cavity aluminum NOE mold and cannot tell the difference with a micrometer or weighing.
Chuck
  
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JS47
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Re: Brass Molds.
Reply #44 - Apr 5th, 2019 at 8:49pm
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Schuetzenmiester wrote on Apr 5th, 2019 at 2:34am:
JS47 wrote on Apr 4th, 2019 at 7:37pm:
Schuetzenmiester wrote on Apr 4th, 2019 at 3:45am:
Interesting. I have a 2 cavity .33 brass mold, but I haven't tried it yet. Wish me luck! Cheesy


It will be interesting to hear of your results. Let us know after you've cast a few.

JS


I will try to get in gear and try it in the next couple weeks. Got my curiosity up now Undecided It is a NOE mold. Who was your neighbor's mold maker?


PM on the way.
  

"I'll be happy to contribute to the wolf recovery program, 180 grains at a time" Unknown western rancher
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