Powder Coating Bullets

truck driver

Ammo Smith
Mar 11, 2013
6,911
242
Besides being a member here I'm also on the Cast Boolit forum.
There is a trend going on that is fairly new to me but has been around for a while and that is powder coating Lead bullets to cut down on leading and helping to keep the lead level down in your body from shooting and handling lead bullets.
The process involves dry or wet coating the lead bullet with poly coat paint instead of the usual alox grease when sizing.
I'm trying the shake and bake dry method to apply the poly coat to the bullets I cast.
I haven't perfected the method yet and my bullets don't look great but if it reduces the leading as most claim I think it is worth effort since I go through thousands of lead bullets each year with most of them hand cast by me.

With the polymer coating you can shoot lead bullets in AR style rifles and Glock pistols with out clogging the gas system on the rifle or leading the polygonal rifling on a Glock pistol.
This was done using Harbor Freight poly coat paint and baked in a Toaster oven/Air fryer.
With Harbor Freight powder coat paint you either have to spray it on or coat the bullets twice.
The picture is of once coated .45 cal 185gr target bullets that I cast.
Two coats will make them look better but not shoot any better.
 

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johnsonian09

Beginner
Nov 17, 2020
17
0
Alot of the pc powders of polyester or resin based.

Try 'smokes' powders from the cast bullet forum. Its top notch stuff. It works way better then the hf powders which is what I started with and gave me alot of trouble but I could get it locally so it's what I did at first.

As far as reducing your blood lead level. Your money will be spent better on a vent hood over your casting pot or a p100 respirator. The half mask type with interchangeable cartridges works great.

I work professionally, every day with both lead particles and vaporized lead. Using soap and water for hands, and a respirator my blood lead level is 22. After years of accumulation. And after going on special diet- basically a high vitamin/mineral-natural metals diet. Reduced that to 12 in 6 months under the same working conditions and precautions.

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Guy Miner

Master Loader
Apr 6, 2006
16,644
1,363
johnsonian09":3qiu2bq8 said:
Alot of the pc powders of polyester or resin based.

Try 'smokes' powders from the cast bullet forum. Its top notch stuff. It works way better then the hf powders which is what I started with and gave me alot of trouble but I could get it locally so it's what I did at first.

As far as reducing your blood lead level. Your money will be spent better on a vent hood over your casting pot or a p100 respirator. The half mask type with interchangeable cartridges works great.

I work professionally, every day with both lead particles and vaporized lead. Using soap and water for hands, and a respirator my blood lead level is 22. After years of accumulation. And after going on special diet- basically a high vitamin/mineral-natural metals diet. Reduced that to 12 in 6 months under the same working conditions and precautions.

Sent from my SM-J337VPP using Tapatalk

Excellent!
 

DrMike

Ballistician
Nov 8, 2006
35,225
1,792
johnsonian09":2hpfqyoe said:
Alot of the pc powders of polyester or resin based.

Try 'smokes' powders from the cast bullet forum. Its top notch stuff. It works way better then the hf powders which is what I started with and gave me alot of trouble but I could get it locally so it's what I did at first.

As far as reducing your blood lead level. Your money will be spent better on a vent hood over your casting pot or a p100 respirator. The half mask type with interchangeable cartridges works great.

I work professionally, every day with both lead particles and vaporized lead. Using soap and water for hands, and a respirator my blood lead level is 22. After years of accumulation. And after going on special diet- basically a high vitamin/mineral-natural metals diet. Reduced that to 12 in 6 months under the same working conditions and precautions.

Sent from my SM-J337VPP using Tapatalk

Some sound advice on the health precautions. Thanks for posting that.
 

truck driver

Ammo Smith
Mar 11, 2013
6,911
242
johnsonian09":34ybp5o6 said:
Alot of the pc powders of polyester or resin based.

Try 'smokes' powders from the cast bullet forum. Its top notch stuff. It works way better then the hf powders which is what I started with and gave me alot of trouble but I could get it locally so it's what I did at first.

As far as reducing your blood lead level. Your money will be spent better on a vent hood over your casting pot or a p100 respirator. The half mask type with interchangeable cartridges works great.

I work professionally, every day with both lead particles and vaporized lead. Using soap and water for hands, and a respirator my blood lead level is 22. After years of accumulation. And after going on special diet- basically a high vitamin/mineral-natural metals diet. Reduced that to 12 in 6 months under the same working conditions and precautions.

Sent from my SM-J337VPP using Tapatalk
Though my go to profession was driving a truck for most of my adult life I worked for 15 years in an aluminum smelter. I was forced into medical retirement do to allergies from air born contaminates which no respirator could filter out except for a scuba set up which couldn't be worn because of safety reasons.
It took me years to get the contaminates out of my system but with the help of a good Doctor I was able to get cleaned out and off various medications.
So I'm very aware of the exposer to dust and mist contaminates and use respirators when casting and cleaning liquid metals.
It was part of my life for 15 years and I still wear one any time I have to be in a dusty or misty environment.
Since it is second nature to me I tend to forget others don't know how harmful it can be to not protect their selves.

I ordered some of Smokes powder coat and will give it a try. The Harbor Freight PC just isn't working for me even when I double coat and bake a second time.
 

johnsonian09

Beginner
Nov 17, 2020
17
0
I only mentioned some safety stuff due to what you said about using pc to control lead exposure, which is true in the handling of finished boolits. But the casting pot if definitely a higher source of lead getting into the body. And I'm happy to hear you have experience dealing with the associated hazards and taking precautions, my father in law who is the one who got me into casting basically poisoned himself with ignorance/not caring to use precautions. So I try to slip in some safety stuff when I can!

I'm sure you will find smokes powder a pleasure to use. When I made the switch from hf powder to smokes it was night and day. Especially when I run the boolits thru the sizer after applying the pc. The hf powder would crack off constantly in the sizer. A large portion of each batch had to be discarded and melted back down to start over.

And cosmetically the coating is much neater and uniform. The only thing I do when I take the rack out of the oven is wait around 30 seconds to cool a tad and then shake them all up so they dont stick to each-other. Theres a sweet spot that you hit to let it cool off without sticking to eachother and it being too hot and goey-peeling off the boolit.

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truck driver

Ammo Smith
Mar 11, 2013
6,911
242
Safety should always be first in our sport whether it's reloading , shooting or making your own projectiles.
I have had club members and friends develop lead poisoning just from handling the bullet while reloading or loading a magazine with lead bullets.
We tend to forget how easy it is to contaminate our selves with lead and other chemicals even when we clean our firearms.
 

truck driver

Ammo Smith
Mar 11, 2013
6,911
242
Got some new powder so i thought I would share some pictures.
These are 185gr .45 SWC I cast myself for target shooting.
 

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truck driver

Ammo Smith
Mar 11, 2013
6,911
242
Nimrod84":3iiwp4fj said:
Those look real good TD.
Thanks Nimrod84. I'm still learning and hope to improve on the coating. Going to try a Ziplock twist lock tub next and see if I can generate more static electricity to get a more even coat and still have some light colored spots on some of the bullets. The main thing is to keep the waist area fully covered so the rifling doesn't cut thru and cause leading.
 

truck driver

Ammo Smith
Mar 11, 2013
6,911
242
Well I was up to it again and tried a different color powder and a smaller application bowl.
185gr .45 SWC target bullet freshly cast.
The bowl I got from Dollar General has snap lock lid that seals very well and will handle 50 bullets at a time with know problems.
 

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truck driver

Ammo Smith
Mar 11, 2013
6,911
242
Well I was up to it again and tried a different color powder and a smaller application bowl.
185gr .45 SWC target bullet freshly cast.
The bowl I got from Dollar General has snap lock lid that seals very well and will handle 50 bullets at a time with know problems.
 

truck driver

Ammo Smith
Mar 11, 2013
6,911
242
Finally got around to loading some of my powder coated bullets and now need to get to the range.
I wash my hands before and after reloading due to handling the brass which could and does hold contaminates, lead stephanite from the spent primers and my fingers get dirty from the lead bullets. I was very surprised at how clean my hands were after handling the powder coated bullets.
No residue on my fingers which are usually black from the bullet lube and lead.
 

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PJGunner

Handloader
Dec 11, 2010
1,811
353
Just a word of warning. The following is from another site I go to and is worth the read and watch the video. it's not all that long.

I'm glad I watched the attached video before I went too far!!!
I recently started to do a little powder coating with some 9mm that I had casted last year using one of Charley's molds. They seemed to turn out perfect. I used Eastwood's Light Ford Blue. Luckily I have only loaded a few rounds. So I will shoot them up this week.
I never thought about a chemical reaction between components happening. Especially with long stored ammo., possibly degrading my gunpowder or making a unsafe unsafe load. Definitely something to consider.
https://youtu.be/TCk2-pmXLZQ

Paul B.
 

truck driver

Ammo Smith
Mar 11, 2013
6,911
242
PJGunner":3axd1cs7 said:
Just a word of warning. The following is from another site I go to and is worth the read and watch the video. it's not all that long.

I'm glad I watched the attached video before I went too far!!!
I recently started to do a little powder coating with some 9mm that I had casted last year using one of Charley's molds. They seemed to turn out perfect. I used Eastwood's Light Ford Blue. Luckily I have only loaded a few rounds. So I will shoot them up this week.
I never thought about a chemical reaction between components happening. Especially with long stored ammo., possibly degrading my gunpowder or making a unsafe unsafe load. Definitely something to consider.
https://youtu.be/TCk2-pmXLZQ

Paul B.
I read that also over on the Cast Boolit forum.
The thing is I don't load and stock ammo Though I do have some older rifle ammo that is left over from hunting but these were loaded with jacketed bullets.
 

truck driver

Ammo Smith
Mar 11, 2013
6,911
242
I decide to experiment some with factory swaged .38 hollow base wad cutters to see if I could get the powder to stick. I washed them in lacquer thinner to clean the wax lube off.
My custom 1911 .38spl wad gun has a tendency to lead in the throat of the bore which has to be picked out when cleaning so I'm hoping powder coating the bullets will get rid of the leading problem and still maintain accuracy.
Here are some before and after pictures with the 148gr HBWC I have on hand.
 

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