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Lee .50 Minie Mold


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#1 Honky Cat

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Posted 11 February 2010 - 07:43 AM

I've decided to try casting my own bullets. I found that Lee molds are cheap and according to their website the "target" minie was the most accurate. So I ordered one for myself (birthday present). I found lots of resources on how to cast my bullets, so that shouldn't be hard with some trial and error. But, I can't find any specific info on loading these bullets. I now that they're intended for older rifles so my inlines may act funny with them. Also, I've seen mixed opinions on whether to lube the the base only or the base and grooves. I like the look of the flat nose, heavy bullet for hunting. Anyone on here have experience with these things?
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#2 PA RIDGE RUNNER

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Posted 11 February 2010 - 08:41 PM

One problem with a bore size conical is you may find that you cannot shoot them to fast or they may strip down the rifling. Also as I recall with a minnie you should push it pretty hard into the powder to start the skirt expanding and that may not be good when using pellets for powder. The minnie was used when there was only black powder and no problem pushing that down pretty hard. With todays pellets all of them but APP sticks say not to seat a bullet very hard and do not crush the pellets. One other thing is do NOT use wheel weights for this bullet as it will most likely be too hard and the skirt will not expand.
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#3 Honky Cat

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Posted 12 February 2010 - 10:24 AM

Also as I recall with a minnie you should push it pretty hard into the powder to start the skirt expanding and that may not be good when using pellets for powder. The minnie was used when there was only black powder and no problem pushing that down pretty hard.



Well, I'm shootin' loose APP. so that's not a problem. I did however just score about 50lbs of wheel weights for $10. If I mix them with some pure lead, I may get a usable alloy. And all this is gonna happen in that pitted-bore CVA so I'm not too concerned with adverse effects do to experimentation. If they are way too hard, anyone that wants the leftover lead (and can come get it) is welcome to have it. Chances are, gas costs more than buying it locally. I read one thread that described using telfon tape as a lube/sabot for the bullet. Seems like a good idea to try if they start out loose, but if the teflon comes off unevenly that would be bad.
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#4 PA RIDGE RUNNER

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Posted 12 February 2010 - 07:13 PM

After thinking about it for a little while with that pitted bore maybe the teflon tape would catch and tear. I also am not so sure why a minnie ball would be lubed in the hollow base of the bullet. Lubing the sides of the bullet is a normal and I would see the advantage of doing that but it beats me why the bullet needs to be lubed at the base. Lube is used to ease the loading of a bullet so I just don't see any advantage to lubing the base.
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#5 Spirithawk

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Posted 12 February 2010 - 09:31 PM

I agree with Paul. For one, I don't believe the teflon tape would work well in a pitted bore. Also, I've been shooting muzzleloaders for over 30 years and I can think of no reason at all to put lube in the hollow base of a bullet. If anything, in warm weather or a hot barrel, I'd be more likely to think it could foul the powder charge. Experimenting can have it's rewards but there's reasons that standard procedures are followed. Stray too far from them and you're just asking for grief. Hey, if nothing else, you could always use those weights for fishing weights and jig heads. Posted Image

Edited by Spirithawk, 12 February 2010 - 09:34 PM.


#6 Honky Cat

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Posted 13 February 2010 - 04:50 PM

I completly agree with you guys. I can't picture what the lube in the base could do, but that's what one thread seemed to be talking about. The powder that came in direct contact with lube would have to burn inconsistently. I might try it just to see what happens because after all that is what that gun is for. As for the tape, hopefully the bullets fit tight enough. It just seemed like a clever trick to make something work MacGyver style.
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#7 PA RIDGE RUNNER

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Posted 13 February 2010 - 06:02 PM

I seriously doubt it would hurt anything and as long as you keep the powder charge down to safe levels it might be worth a try if the bullet fits too loose. Minnie balls are designed to fit loose in the barrel and that is why I never used them for hunting as I feared that the bullet would not stay on the powder. As I recall I tested them once in a flintlock but did not get very good accuracy and never found a spent bullet to see if it expanded enough to engage the rifling or not.
If God had a refrigerator would your picture be on it.
Remember the Ark was built by amateurs, the titanic by professionals.




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