Author Topic: Who builds cutsom round ball molds ?  (Read 14823 times)

2lookindown

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Who builds cutsom round ball molds ?
« on: April 21, 2013, 03:22:57 AM »
I have  some Lee molds that have the spur cut off and is undersized... I would like to get one built with the spur above round...

jimtucker2

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Re: Who builds cutsom round ball molds ?
« Reply #1 on: April 21, 2013, 04:37:57 AM »

Larry Callahan of Missouri builds custom bullet molds...he has an ad in Muzzleloader, and you can probably find him on the web.
Good luck!   Jim

2lookindown

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Re: Who builds cutsom round ball molds ?
« Reply #2 on: April 21, 2013, 04:49:21 AM »
Jim, Thanks I will try and find him....

Offline smokinbuck

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Re: Who builds cutsom round ball molds ?
« Reply #3 on: April 21, 2013, 05:04:13 AM »
Jeff Tanner, best you can buy for the money. Reach him at; jeff@jt-bullet-moulds.co.uk.
Mark
Mark

2lookindown

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Re: Who builds cutsom round ball molds ?
« Reply #4 on: April 21, 2013, 06:10:35 AM »
Mark, I sent him an e-mail... Thanks

Online El Bango

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Re: Who builds cutsom round ball molds ?
« Reply #5 on: April 21, 2013, 06:31:57 PM »
Dixie used to,don't know if they still do.They made 'em in .001" increments.

Offline Kopfjaeger

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" A godly man and his rifle deprive sleep from the wicked, A christian man who prays is the defeater of evil, A praying man who will fight is the conqueror of nations and the hope of the oppressed "

Offline Collector

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Re: Who builds cutsom round ball molds ?
« Reply #7 on: April 22, 2013, 06:08:40 PM »
Here is another gentleman that makes custom RB moulds, though I have not had any contact, with him, for some time.  He's a retired Master Machinist and is known as 'Cannon Mike.' 

http://www.users.qwest.net/~cannonmike/

During the pendency of my Allen Martin Newcomer/Fondersmith build, I commissioned a 'period correct,' steel, three (3) ball 'gang mould (1X.630 + 2X.625) from him. It was fully stress relieved and heat treated.  Upon completion, I sent it to Tim Ridge of Swamp Fox Knives who crafted turned handles of Curly Ash, with turned brass ferrules, for it.  It was a thing of beauty and fully utilitarian- like the smoothrifle it was built to accompany.

Regrettably, I deleted my digital photos, of it.  Perhaps someone, here, can persuade the CLA European Correspondent, who has custody of this set/gang mould, to present a few photographs on ALR, for us.

We're fortunate, today, to have so many talented craft/trades people, to choose from, quite literally at our fingertips.



Offline smokinbuck

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Re: Who builds cutsom round ball molds ?
« Reply #8 on: April 22, 2013, 07:42:56 PM »
2look,
What size are you needing?
Mark
Mark

2lookindown

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Re: Who builds cutsom round ball molds ?
« Reply #9 on: April 23, 2013, 12:30:45 AM »
Guys, Sorry Dad is in the hospital with congestive heart failure... I stayed up whit him all night... I need a .319 & a .395... I have a .319 in a lee and a .395 in a lee... I want one that I can get a total round ball... The lee molds seem to leave the ball  10 thousands light on the spur side... I want a mold that I can swege to round or tumble round...

I have contacted Jeff Tanner but not set in stone yet....

Offline smokinbuck

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Re: Who builds cutsom round ball molds ?
« Reply #10 on: April 23, 2013, 02:24:17 AM »
2look,
I have used Lee molds with great success for a long time. The .319 is going to be a custom but you should be able to get your .395 from Lyman or RCBS, with steel blocks. For the cost you may not see an appreciable difference. Hope your Dad does well.
Mark
Mark

Offline Kopfjaeger

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Re: Who builds cutsom round ball molds ?
« Reply #11 on: April 25, 2013, 08:02:26 PM »
There's a Dixie 395 Single Cavity Mold on ebay with two days left. It's only bid to $5.00 so far.
" A godly man and his rifle deprive sleep from the wicked, A christian man who prays is the defeater of evil, A praying man who will fight is the conqueror of nations and the hope of the oppressed "

2lookindown

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Re: Who builds cutsom round ball molds ?
« Reply #12 on: April 25, 2013, 09:02:20 PM »
There's a Dixie 395 Single Cavity Mold on ebay with two days left. It's only bid to $5.00 so far.

Does that mold have a complete round ball or is it one like the Lee that will not make a true round ball... The lee is only .309 at the flat and the rest is .319 with no way to make it round.... I hate loading with the flat out it catches wind and affects flight of the round ball....

Offline Kopfjaeger

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Re: Who builds cutsom round ball molds ?
« Reply #13 on: April 26, 2013, 12:24:11 AM »
It makes a complete round ball. I have and use the exact same one for my .40 caliber. Its a heavy duty mold it will last longer than we will.
" A godly man and his rifle deprive sleep from the wicked, A christian man who prays is the defeater of evil, A praying man who will fight is the conqueror of nations and the hope of the oppressed "

Offline SCLoyalist

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Re: Who builds cutsom round ball molds ?
« Reply #14 on: April 26, 2013, 12:26:04 AM »
You may be seeking more perfection than you're going to find in a mold.   I just went and measured a few RB, different calibers and mold makers, just to see how spherical they are.   If you imagine that the ball is a globe with the north pole at the sprue, then measuring across the poles (first measurement) and comparing with the diameter at the 'equator' (2nd measurement) I got:
 Lee .385 RB,  .370 vs .387 around the equator

 Unknown custom .530:   .543 vs  .533

.595 Callahan Bag mold:   .579 vs .598

Lyman .440:   .446  vs .442

Hornady Swaged 000 (.350) RB:   .351  +/- .001 depending on orientation of measurement.

A mold is going to leave some artifact where the sprue is cut off.   The Lyman mold tends to leave the sprue standing proud.  The Lee mold tends to cut off below the imaginary contour of the sphere.   The Callahan bag mold leaves a lot of sprue and puddled lead for you to cut off manually so the sprue artifact depends on your technique in cutting off the excess lead.  

If you want to cast closer to a more perfect sphere, you'd have to pour through a small hole to reduce the size of the sprue, but I'm thinking the hole would be so small that getting a uniform pour without air bubbles would be somewhere between difficult and impossible.  I'd suggest you try to find some swaged rb in the desired diameter and see what sort of groups you get with those compared to the cast ball you're shooting now.   And, if you haven't already done so, weigh out several of your cast .319s and see how uniform you're casting with respect to weight.  A random air bubble in there may have more potential for causing  mischief than the sprue.  Good luck, SCL
« Last Edit: April 26, 2013, 12:28:30 AM by SCLoyalist »

2lookindown

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Re: Who builds cutsom round ball molds ?
« Reply #15 on: April 26, 2013, 12:36:46 AM »
SCLoyalist, I will build a swege if I get one with the spure up proud.... I have enough junk molds to make it work....

Offline Collector

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Re: Who builds cutsom round ball molds ?
« Reply #16 on: April 26, 2013, 06:55:34 AM »
1. Pour lead into mould (Note: type of lead-lead alloy will affect shrinkage)
2. Use sprue cutter or other cutting tool (if/as applicable)
3. Quickly reinsert into the warm mould making sure that the sprue is repositioned to face rounded wall of mould
4. Compress to obtain round/sphere shaped ball (without sprue)
5. Repeat...

The pursuit of perfection is a humbling experience, fraught, ultimately, with compromise.

Good luck! 
 

2lookindown

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Re: Who builds cutsom round ball molds ?
« Reply #17 on: April 26, 2013, 03:19:11 PM »
Collector, I was going to use my rockchucker press a the final stage of the round ball procedure.... I guess doing it hot would help but I think it will work by using an old mold and getting the spure as short as possible and press it to round... It has got to be better than a flat spot 10 thousands under size....

Offline Kermit

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Re: Who builds cutsom round ball molds ?
« Reply #18 on: April 26, 2013, 06:35:15 PM »
NEI makes RB molds too. Not sure about custom.

http://www.neihandtools.com/catalog.html
"Anything worth doing is worth doing slowly." Mae West

Offline Collector

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Re: Who builds cutsom round ball molds ?
« Reply #19 on: April 26, 2013, 06:50:54 PM »
2lookingdown,

All things being equal, (they're not) targets should tell the tale, but the benefits may, ultimately, prove to be so incremental that making any determination will prove, at best, difficult.

Good luck with your 'quest.'  We await your return and the telling of your travels.    

2lookindown

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Re: Who builds cutsom round ball molds ?
« Reply #20 on: April 26, 2013, 11:38:17 PM »
Collector, If you load a Lee made round ball and get the flat spot off center will it fly straight enough for you to shoot it in a match at friendship... I don't want to shoot anything like that myself... If I need to load something that needs to be centered up and if it aint center it won't fly right... Maybe it is good enough for most people but I want to shoot the best I can....

2lookindown

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Re: Who builds cutsom round ball molds ?
« Reply #21 on: April 26, 2013, 11:39:44 PM »
Kermit, I have a Jeff Tanner mold on the way but if it aint right I will check it out..... THanks

Offline pathfinder

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Re: Who builds cutsom round ball molds ?
« Reply #22 on: April 28, 2013, 06:04:24 AM »
The way you drop the ball and how soon after it solidifies affects the "roundness" of the ball.

Larry's cast quite a nice ball. I've never had one more than .008 out of round. Swedging is the only way to get the kind of "perfection" your looking for.

Walter Kline did an experiment with out of round ball's and found they were more consistently accurate than the more uniform ball's. Go figure!
Not all baby turtles make to the sea!  Darwinism. Itís works!

2lookindown

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Re: Who builds cutsom round ball molds ?
« Reply #23 on: April 28, 2013, 03:13:42 PM »
Pathfinder, I just don't want a .010 below round flat spot that I need to be centered to be able to shoot my gun.... If i get it off it will be out of center and cause a out of balance problem.... a wobble in a round ball can't be accurate...

Offline Daryl

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Re: Who builds cutsom round ball molds ?
« Reply #24 on: April 28, 2013, 06:08:33 PM »
The base must be perfect. The nose of the bullet or ball is of very much less importance. A ball with the projecting or flat spot sprue closely centred will shoot at well at 50yards as you are able.

Jeff Tanner's molds will leave a sprue that must be trimmed by you. I use wire strippers with the little rounded cutters - with pure lead balls a cut and twist motion will usually leave an almost perfectly round ball, with a tiny tit. I place that up and when pushing that combination into the bore with the short starter, that little tit is pushed into the ball, making for a perfectly round ball.

The other option is to snip off the sprue, then use a file stroke to smooth and round that area, again making for a perfectly round surface.

The smallest Tanner mould I have is a .595". With my 10 thumbs-for-fingers, I cannot imagine trimming anything much smaller.

Tanner mould. I suggest you use mould prep, or spray inside with Ms. Moly or other moly bullet coating spray. This will prevent lead sticking to the brass and will assist in delivering perfectly cast balls.




These balls are right out of a Tanner mold.



These are the wire strippers I use - I find them much superior to side cutters.




« Last Edit: April 29, 2013, 06:48:21 PM by Daryl »
Daryl

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