Brinell hardness of cast wheelwright and Linotype?

Discussion in 'Ammunition & Reloading' started by dgang, Feb 2, 2020.

  1. dgang

    dgang Member

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    Prepping to get into casting bullets. I have two bars of lynotype and a couple of hundred pounds of fluxed wheel weight ingots from years ago when I was making shot on a Littleton shot maker. I'm planning to make a 50/50 mixture. Anybody knowledgable as to the Brinell hardness I can expect?
    Thanks in advance and good shooting' to ya'.
     
  2. locutus

    locutus Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Can't tell you the Brinell hardness, but I used a mixture of one pound of Lino to two pounds of WW for many years for my high velocity magnum pistol loads, Up to 1500 FPS. Lubed them with either RoosterLabs' Zambini Red or Thompson's Blue Angel. Never had leading problems.
     
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  3. texaswoodworker

    texaswoodworker Well-Known Member

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    Edit: This kind of stuff interests me, so I kinda yammered on a bit more than you probably wanted. For the sake of not boring you or others, I put the answer in bold.

    Linotype is 4% tin, 12% antimony, and 84% lead. BHN is about 21

    If your wheel weights are the clip on type, then they are 0.5% tin, 3% antimony, and 96.25% lead (there's some other junk in there to make up the remaining 0.25%). BHN about 12. If they're the stick on type, they are basically pure lead with just a tiny amount of tin in it (about 0.25%). It should also be noted that some wheel weights are zinc, not lead. You do not want that in your bullets, especially in large amounts. Make sure to separate those out if there are any.

    A 50/50 mix of linotype and clip on WW is going to result in an alloy made up of 2.25% tin, 7.5% antimony, and 90.25% lead with a BHN of about 16

    Frankly, I would add a bit more tin to it, try to bring it up to 5%. It helps the alloy fill out the mold a little bit better. A BHN of 16 is good. Most factory made cast bullets are between 18-20, which is far more than you actually need. I try to keep mine between 14-15, and I push my stuff pretty hard. To get to 5% tin, you'd need to add about 10 grams of tin per pound if my math is right (feel free to check that). You don't have to add more tin to it if you don't want to, it just makes that allow a bit nicer to work with. You'll have a pretty decent alloy either way.

    Lyman #2 is a fantastic alloy to try to reproduce, and you are not far off from it. It's 5% tin, 5% antimony, and 90% lead, and has a BHN of about 14.5.

    I'M assuming you have clip on wheel weights. If you have stick on, things are a bit different.

    A 50/50 mix of linotype with stick on WW would result in an alloy made up of 2% tin, 6% antimony, and 92% lead with a BHN of about 14.75. Again, it's definitely usable, but a little more tin wouldn't hurt.

    You can play around with different alloys using this.

    http://www.weatherby.dk/bhn.htm

    Just remember that harness will not make up for an ill fitting bullet.
     
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2020
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  4. dgang

    dgang Member

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    Thanks guys for the input. That about the hardness I was hoping for. Will try that mix and look at the results and go from there.
     
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  5. locutus

    locutus Well-Known Member Supporter

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    BTW, Tamarack lube worked well for me, but it's smoky. Since I do a lot of indoor shooting, I don't use it anymore, but if you shoot outdoors most of the time, it works well and it's less expensive than Blue Angel.
     
  6. dgang

    dgang Member

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    Thanks for the advice on the lube. I've been advised to at least 1/2 dozen different types including some home made ones. It's going to be a learning curve just to find the best lube, not to mention the best mixture of lead alloy. That's part of the enjoyment. If I wanted it easy I would just buy the bullets.
     
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  7. Notrighty

    Notrighty Member

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    When I first got into casting a couple years ago I tried wheel weights and found a lot of them were zinc. Tapping them on a hard object gave a tinny sound compared to lead. Made some bullets from them but the consistency wasn’t good. Now it’s plumbers lead and superhard alloy for me.
     
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  8. dgang

    dgang Member

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    From input in talking to others that cast their own, Lymans cast data, and other forums, I am going to try 25% linotype and 75% COWW. Still haven't decided on the lube, will probably try some of each from other casters and see how they work. Won't know until it warms up this spring since all the work will be done in an unheated garage. Thanks for the input. Good shooting' to y'all.
     
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  9. locutus

    locutus Well-Known Member Supporter

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    The home made lube known as "Felix Lube" on cast Boolits seems to be great, but I was never willing to go to through the hassle of making it.:(
     
  10. texaswoodworker

    texaswoodworker Well-Known Member

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    You can't beat simple lube for it's simplicity. :p

    I've used it on full house 9.3x57mm Mauser loads. Not a hint of leading, and it works well in either a lubersizer or with pan lubing.

    http://castboolits.gunloads.com/showthread.php?168373-simple-lube
     
  11. dgang

    dgang Member

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    Thanks for the info.
     
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  12. Notrighty

    Notrighty Member

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    Alox tumble lube is also pretty cheap and easy. Someone mentioned proper sizing and that is probably the most important part of casting.