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 HELP- got mystery cast bullets my neighbor gifted to me 
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Location: Lacey
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I had a huge stash of reloading goodies given to me, but I need help identifying part of the bullet stash. They appear to be cast using Speer half-jackets? They are 30 cal (.308) and I have found 3 different sizes.
I googled and read something about them possibly being inexpensive plinking bullets? Some of them are very small though and I have never seen a bullet shaped like this.

I would like to load them and shoot them, but need to figure out what they are first.

any help is much appreciated! Thanks!

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Wed Aug 23, 2017 3:15 pm
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Use lead bullet with gas check info.

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Wed Aug 23, 2017 3:21 pm
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how about seating depth? Would i just take another bullet of same weight, and measure the seating depth achieved with OAL specified in the book, then mimic that seat depth with these bullets?


Wed Aug 23, 2017 3:31 pm
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Barfly wrote:
how about seating depth? Would i just take another bullet of same weight, and measure the seating depth achieved with OAL specified in the book, then mimic that seat depth with these bullets?



I would look for a bullet with the same length and similar weight before going by weight alone and start with mid to lower loading of powder and work your way up.

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Wed Aug 23, 2017 7:56 pm
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I believe those are swaged into the half jackets, not cast, meaning they are likely pure lead (or nearly pure) instead of a harder cast alloy. The half jackets are an attempt to make swaged bullets handle higher velocity, and they can to a point, but nothing like you can do with a regular jacketed bullet. From my experience with swaged half-jacket bullets, you'll get best results limiting those to ~1500 fps or less (probably better at 1000-1200 fps).

They won't handle very high pressure; the soft lead slumps, accuracy deteriorates, and the barrel will start to lead when pressure gets too high. They'd work for mild plinking loads using fast pistol/shotgun powder in most 30 cal rifle cases.

The different sizes/weights are from someone experimenting with their swaging die settings and different core lengths. Did you happen to get the swaging equipment with that stuff?


Wed Aug 23, 2017 9:23 pm
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All I got from him pertaining to these bullets was 3-4 cigar boxes of the bullets..

Ever seen a bullet shaped like that before?


Thu Aug 24, 2017 5:29 am
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Not exactly, but that's the thing with swaging, it can be whatever the guy wanted who made the die. It's basically a semi wadcutter profile though for punching paper at moderate velocity, which matches what that bullet construction is good for.


Thu Aug 24, 2017 4:56 pm
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should be interesting to find load data to push them from .308 at below 1500 fps... LOL Would it help to powder coat them?


Fri Aug 25, 2017 7:49 am
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I recommend Lyman Cast Bullet Handbook.
The data for 308 WIN, Lyman #311332, 180gr :
Unique 12.2gr 1425 fps, 23,000 cup --- 15.5gr 1692 fps 38,000 cup
SR-7625 11.5gr 1270 fps, 21,500 cup --- 14.0gr 1492 fps 36,400 cup
5744 21.0gr 1667 fps 19,300 psi --- 32.5gr 2308 fps 49,200 psi
(I just picked 2 random powders and the "potentially most accurate", the 5744. There are 10 more powders listed for that Lyman mold.)

SAAMI specifies a max 308 WIN pressure of 62,000 psi, so data for cast/swaged doesn't even come close at the low/medium loads. The loads for cast/swaged are limited more by leading, not pressure applied to the gun.
So for the higher velocity loads in both types: (Simplified)
Undesirable results for cast/swaged boolits- leading, fouling.
Undesirable results for jacketed bullets - over-pressure damages gun.

The sectional density for that Lyman mold is .271. BC is .320. The Good Book lists the OAL at 2.705.
The Good Book also has an excellent few chapters before the data giving good lessons on the metallurgy and ballistics, fouling/leading, etc.
I posted some months ago about how I used to think that I "knew enough".. I've actually had quite a few guys come to me over the years and ask my advice about reloading, casting etc, so naturally I thought that I was an expert. :ROFLMAO:

Joining WaGuns a few years ago opened the barn doors on my ignorance. I think that there are true experts who have forgotten more than I ever knew, so take this information as my best, which is wholly inadequate. Pick up The Good Book. If we cross paths before you do, you're welcome to borrow mine for awhile, as I am in a schedule that is far over my head and I won't be casting at least until December.

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Fri Aug 25, 2017 9:25 am
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I appreciate that info! I will look into picking up a copy of that book. Am hoping to eventually start casting my own bullets for .38 spl, .357 mag and .44 mag. :-)


Fri Aug 25, 2017 10:39 am
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BUT PMB no answer about powder coating which is the way I would try first with a few and if the sizeing after PC did not look right I would just smelt them.


Tue Aug 29, 2017 6:50 pm
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They can certainly be powder coated, but I don't think there'd be a significant advantage. The main limiting factor is the alloy hardness (or lack of). Powder coating may let you push them faster without leading, but it won't make them any more accurate when pressure gets too high for good accuracy. Powder coating won't hurt, but may not help much either in this very unique situation.


Tue Aug 29, 2017 11:15 pm
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Agree with Youndering's post here.


Fri Sep 01, 2017 4:53 am
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