Bullet mold preparation, lubing and smoking
Posted by on 20 October 2011 01:29 PM


Aluminum molds require occasional lubrication. They should be re-lubricated if/when you notice the sprue plate begins to become more difficult to move and/or when the mold blocks do not line up when the mold is closed. Lack of lubrication will cause the mold blocks to mis-align, or the sprue plate to gall the top surface of the mold.

A technique that works well is to have a glob of hard, stick-type bullet lube (like beeswax or Permatex Anti-Seize) about the size of a .45 slug rolled into a football; when the mold gets hot, touch one end to the aligning grooves along the sides of the mold block, on the underside of the sprue plate, and on the steel pins along the bottom of the mold block. Use sparingly, as if any gets into the mold cavity it will cause wrinkled bullets. 

Fill your melting pot right to the top with lead, and then when the lead is molten, dip the corner of the mold (the aluminum part) into the lead for at least 30 seconds. A good indicator of mold temperature is the puddle that forms on top of the sprue cutter after the mold fills. If this puddle solidifies as you fill the mold, the mold is not hot enough. It should stay molten for 3 to 5 seconds after the mold fills and you stop pouring. Also make sure there the mold cavities are clean (we use Coleman lantern fuel as a solvent), and "smoked". Smoking is accomplished by using a lighter or match and letting the soot from the flame darken the bullet cavity. This process helps the mold release the bullet without undue "persuasion".

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