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4/22/2019 5:32:20 PM
Posted: 4/17/2016 8:56:16 PM EDT
Several of you have asked over the last few months how I have been applying powder coat to my cast pistol bullets.

It took me a few tries to get the balance right between the number of black air soft BBs, vs the number of bullets, vs the amount of powder in the plastic container correct.

The biggest hurdle I had to over come with this project was actually getting the powder to stick to the bullets. I tried the circular hand motion, I tried tumbling by hand, I tried circular motion on the carpet all with poor results.

After watching a few YouTube videos I found guys that were dedicating a vibratory tumbler to the task. I really didn't want to dedicate a whole tumbler to messy powder coating. So I came up with this alternate method.

I literally just piggy back my plasticware containers on to the top of my Dillon tumbler for 20 minutes simply using a strip of packing tape. Can you say multi tasking?

This methods works so well that you can easily coat in one coat and often have to knock off a lot of powder before placing the bullets onto the parchment paper.



Link Posted: 4/17/2016 9:43:30 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/17/2016 9:43:43 PM EDT by Redarts]
You say you don't want to do it, so fair enough, but I just throw a boatload of airsoft bbs in a harbor freight tumbler with a few hundred bullets and run it for about 30 seconds. Bam, perfect coating.

The five pound tumbler is what, $50?
Link Posted: 4/17/2016 10:35:03 PM EDT
I think the biggest thing I don't like about a dedicated tumbler is just any further making of messes just getting the bullets back out of the tumbler. With the plastic wear I just pop the lid off and pluck them out with some large tweezers until empty. Reload with bullets and repeat. No messes, no clean up, no powder spilled anywhere.

To be fair, running it to 20 minutes may be excessive but I run it for that long just because that's how long the toaster oven is on for.
Link Posted: 4/17/2016 10:39:28 PM EDT
Link Posted: 4/17/2016 10:44:27 PM EDT
Thanks dry. I don't know if it's a humidity level or atmospheric thing but I had no luck by hand in a #5 container. Maybe if I wanted to do 2 or 3 coats. I prefer one coat, otherwise it's just not worth the time and headache.

To be fair, I never actually tried just doing it for 30 seconds. Maybe I was over doing it somehow by trying to go a couple minutes to 10 minutes by hand?
Link Posted: 4/17/2016 10:55:20 PM EDT
Use nitrile gloves instead of tweezers also if you want to save some time. You can get a big pack of them cheap at the grocery store. "Dust" them with some coating by running them through your tub of bbs and you can handle your bullets safely and quickly without compromising the coating. That will save you tons of time over handling each of them with tweezers.

You might have some of those gloves sitting around right now.
Link Posted: 4/17/2016 11:00:26 PM EDT
Thanks Red!

Awesome idea and yes I have both latex and nitrile gloves on hand. I will give that a try.

Learning as I go. Love this board.
Link Posted: 4/17/2016 11:04:02 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/17/2016 11:05:58 PM EDT by dryflash3]
Link Posted: 4/17/2016 11:07:06 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/17/2016 11:11:42 PM EDT by Redarts]
I have no idea if latex work as well or if at all (they probably do). I just tried it with nitrile, they worked, so I never attempted it with latex.

You can get shake the bullets while handling them with the gloves to knock off excess. Of late I just throw them all in a oven pan on parchment paper and just roll them around a bit.

If a perfect even coat was necessary everyone would be back to ESPC guns... and THAT is time consuming, doing only 40-50 bullets a go, and wasting way more powder... but they sure did look good
Link Posted: 4/18/2016 1:18:33 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Redarts:
Use nitrile gloves instead of tweezers also if you want to save some time. You can get a big pack of them cheap at the grocery store. "Dust" them with some coating by running them through your tub of bbs and you can handle your bullets safely and quickly without compromising the coating. That will save you tons of time over handling each of them with tweezers.

You might have some of those gloves sitting around right now.
View Quote


I'm going to give this a try. Grabbing the bullets with needle nose pliers is the most frustrating part of the process.
Link Posted: 4/18/2016 7:59:12 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/18/2016 9:00:29 PM EDT by MRBLACK947]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By dryflash3:

I only do 1 coat and I'm on the wet side of the state.


Maybe not enough powder or BB's? Too many bullets?


eta, the reason I don't use gloves is I pick up bullets with needle nose pliers and tap off excessive powder on the side of the bowl.


You get an even coat that way.
View Quote





Damn, I thought for sure we talked about this once before and I thought you said you were on the dry side.

I do about 3 layers of BBs deep. Between one and two tablespooons of powder. and I've settled on between 50 and 60 bullets in the tub at a time.

I'm very happy with the results but if I can learn ways to do it better and more efficient then by all means hell yeah!
Link Posted: 4/18/2016 8:01:31 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By DaveyDug:


I'm going to give this a try. Grabbing the bullets with needle nose pliers is the most frustrating part of the process.
View Quote View All Quotes
View All Quotes
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By DaveyDug:
Originally Posted By Redarts:
Use nitrile gloves instead of tweezers also if you want to save some time. You can get a big pack of them cheap at the grocery store. "Dust" them with some coating by running them through your tub of bbs and you can handle your bullets safely and quickly without compromising the coating. That will save you tons of time over handling each of them with tweezers.

You might have some of those gloves sitting around right now.


I'm going to give this a try. Grabbing the bullets with needle nose pliers is the most frustrating part of the process.



I don't think I could do it with needle nose. The dexterity would be off for me. I am using some harbor freight tweezers that are about 7 inches long and open naturally to about 3/4s inch. I can lay out a hundred bullets in less than 5 minutes and not make a mess of the coating. Still will give the Nitrile gloves a dry for grins. Got to remember to put some powder on the glove fingers as well. That does make sense.
Link Posted: 4/18/2016 8:52:19 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/18/2016 8:53:48 PM EDT by 30Caliber]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Redarts:
Use nitrile gloves instead of tweezers also if you want to save some time. You can get a big pack of them cheap at the grocery store. "Dust" them with some coating by running them through your tub of bbs and you can handle your bullets safely and quickly without compromising the coating. That will save you tons of time over handling each of them with tweezers.

You might have some of those gloves sitting around right now.
View Quote

I may have to give this a swing again sometime. I have PC a shot once or twice with an electrostatic gun and the whole operation was just a giant hassle.
Link Posted: 4/18/2016 10:46:50 PM EDT
Link Posted: 4/18/2016 11:06:28 PM EDT
Well it would definitely be a pleasure to meet you someday if we ever happen to cross paths dryflash!
Link Posted: 4/18/2016 11:13:37 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/18/2016 11:14:14 PM EDT by dryflash3]
Link Posted: 4/19/2016 7:38:40 AM EDT
OP;
Brilliant idea you have there piggybacking the containers on top of the tumbler-less mess less fuss.

Don't mean to hijack this thread, I want to eventually start doing this, but I have some questions.

What are the benefits to doing this? Cleaner barrel? less smoke with some powders? safer to handle?

I don't cast my own bullets yet, so can I just do this to any lead bullets I buy? I ask because I have some still from MBC in 45acp (230RN and 200 SWC's)

What do you use for powder coat? I saw on youtube people were just getting the powder coat from HF. Is there something better to use?

After you do this, can you just load them up or do you have to re size them back down because the coating increases the diameter? If so, how do you do that?

Sorry about all the questions, I am just getting back into the hobby after a 4 year hiatus.
Thanks,
Mav
Link Posted: 4/19/2016 8:25:29 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/19/2016 8:36:30 AM EDT by dryflash3]
Link Posted: 4/19/2016 3:19:14 PM EDT
I tried the piggy back route and it too long for me to get good results.

I have noticed the powder behaves much better in the north east winter months rather the summer months.

Just like DF, I use black air soft BB's and a #5 plastic container.

I do 100-150 pistol bullets at a shake and bake session.

1 to 2 minutes shaking by hand gives me complete coverage.

I differ when it comes time to bake.

I dump the bullets out on hardware cloth, shake the hardware cloth a bit and into the oven they go.

They come out 99% coated in one coat and leave some very minor marks where they rest on the hardware cloth.

Just not worth it for me to use tweezers.




Link Posted: 4/19/2016 8:42:35 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Flashbang1:
I tried the piggy back route and it too long for me to get good results.

I have noticed the powder behaves much better in the north east winter months rather the summer months.

Just like DF, I use black air soft BB's and a #5 plastic container.

I do 100-150 pistol bullets at a shake and bake session.

1 to 2 minutes shaking by hand gives me complete coverage.

I differ when it comes time to bake.

I dump the bullets out on hardware cloth, shake the hardware cloth a bit and into the oven they go.

They come out 99% coated in one coat and leave some very minor marks where they rest on the hardware cloth.

Just not worth it for me to use tweezers.
https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/--zHd1u3Dk8g/VfX0984hFAI/AAAAAAAAEY0/SR3Pfelfq4IC0ojgSihc2jD6yKMFYOTsACHM/s1280/upload_-1

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-1wjfJVLJB08/VgMMFrIeWWI/AAAAAAAAEZ0/-DXNDuEL5nU1abtP2XrsEAhEtMsh5S9OQCHM/s1280/upload_-1

View Quote

I like that.
Link Posted: 4/20/2016 7:19:54 AM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By dryflash3:
http://castboolits.gunloads.com/forumdisplay.php?184-Coatings-and-Alternatives Start here, read the stickies, this is how I learned.

<a href="http://s250.photobucket.com/user/dryflash3/media/Powder%20Coat/P1010910_zpsbkdyxwtn.jpg.html" target="_blank">http://i250.photobucket.com/albums/gg272/dryflash3/Powder%20Coat/P1010910_zpsbkdyxwtn.jpg</a>


This what you need to get started. Has to be black BB, has to be a #5 container, HF red works good. the other colors HF has don't work.


<a href="http://s250.photobucket.com/user/dryflash3/media/Powder%20Coat/P1010912_zpssw3a91gd.jpg.html" target="_blank">http://i250.photobucket.com/albums/gg272/dryflash3/Powder%20Coat/P1010912_zpssw3a91gd.jpg</a>


You also need a $20 toaster oven. Need to test thermostat with a oven thermometer to find 400 degrees. Then mark dial. Notice mark on my dial.
<a href="http://s250.photobucket.com/user/dryflash3/media/Powder%20Coat/P1010909_zpsghyy5sv0.jpg.html" target="_blank">http://i250.photobucket.com/albums/gg272/dryflash3/Powder%20Coat/P1010909_zpsghyy5sv0.jpg</a>


The results. !55 gr Lee 2R mold. For 300 blk or 7.62x39, depending on how their sized. .310 or .314.

Lee push through sizing die used to size. They are <$20 and screw into a press like a die. Work great.


#5 container, look at the bottom of bowl. Will have a triangle with a 5 in the middle.


That's the plastic that produces the static needed.


Same for the color of the BB's. It makes a huge difference when you use the right stuff. Got mine at Wally world.


HF= Harbor Freight


Benefits; puts a polymer jacket on bullet. So no smoke, no leading, so lube mess on bullets, dies, gun, ammo or you.


Yes use a gas check if you mold style uses one. For pistol bullets, use a mold without a gas check.

I use parchment paper so bullets don't stick to oven tray. Available right with the wax paper, Alum foil in supermarket.


Last weekend I shot 44 mag. Home cast 310 gr GC with a top load I worked up to, 22 grs of H-110. Stout load in Redhalk.


No leading, pistol very clean, just like shooting jacketed bullets.

View Quote

Thanks DF!
Link Posted: 4/20/2016 4:08:19 PM EDT
team here is my story, I failed miserably with the hi=tek, just too many variables or im just slow , I tried the powder coating and wow what fun, I toss mine in my tumbler, it makes a little mess but not bad,

about 5 min. I made some baskets out of 1/4 hardware cloth and lined them with the non stick foil. I pour from the tumbler to one rack with no foil, give them two shakes to get the loose powder off them. Next I pour

them into a basket with the foil and into the oven. 400 for about 15 min, I have an over thermometer I put in there and it says its 400 when my oven is on 425. I just got back from the range and I am really happy

to report no leading at all. I ran a brush down the bore with some eds red Mr. fortune cookie 45 LC turned me onto and its spotless. I ran probably 250 rounds down range, the SWC I cast did not fare so well, I

read a few threads and it seems I have to seat them a bit longer, or my crimp is off, it seemed like the bullets were (45 acp 200 GN SWC ) were hitting the top of the barrel in the M&P 45 FS. I almost think the

bullets were hitting the brass case so thinking thats where my crimp is not enough, i measured .470 though. Anyway I will play with that and get it to work. My PC did not come out super smooth like some I see in h

here, I used HF red and HF white. the white mixed with the red so they really came out pinkish.
Link Posted: 4/20/2016 4:10:14 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Flashbang1:
I tried the piggy back route and it too long for me to get good results.

I have noticed the powder behaves much better in the north east winter months rather the summer months.

Just like DF, I use black air soft BB's and a #5 plastic container.

I do 100-150 pistol bullets at a shake and bake session.

1 to 2 minutes shaking by hand gives me complete coverage.

I differ when it comes time to bake.

I dump the bullets out on hardware cloth, shake the hardware cloth a bit and into the oven they go.

They come out 99% coated in one coat and leave some very minor marks where they rest on the hardware cloth.

Just not worth it for me to use tweezers.
https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/--zHd1u3Dk8g/VfX0984hFAI/AAAAAAAAEY0/SR3Pfelfq4IC0ojgSihc2jD6yKMFYOTsACHM/s1280/upload_-1

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-1wjfJVLJB08/VgMMFrIeWWI/AAAAAAAAEZ0/-DXNDuEL5nU1abtP2XrsEAhEtMsh5S9OQCHM/s1280/upload_-1

View Quote
this happened to me and now I use the non stick foil, I just dump them into the rack like you have give them a shake and bake them. they have good coverage and no bare marks where they hit the basket.

bullets look really nice. where did you get the purple?
Link Posted: 4/20/2016 4:40:01 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By dryflash3:
I've had great luck with #5 container and hand shaking to about 30 seconds.

Lots of powder, 3 layers of black BB's, about 50 bullets.
View Quote

My procedure as well.
Link Posted: 4/20/2016 5:30:20 PM EDT
When saying lots of powder how much would that be? Like say in the containers in my first picture with three layers of BBs? Big difference between 2 tablespoons and 6 tablespoons. I'm only starting with about 2 table spoons and it's seems there is a good bit of powder laying in the bottom of the tub below the BBs. Maybe I need to add a few more tablespoons? At what point is there too much powder in there?
Link Posted: 4/20/2016 5:38:56 PM EDT
Link Posted: 4/20/2016 5:51:01 PM EDT
Ok, that sounds good. Sounds like I may need to try more powder and more BBs in the same container with the same amount of bullets I've been running. Just tried hand shaking some 40 S&Ws boolits for 30 seconds to a minute with my old ratios and was still getting lots of bare spots. Will adjust on the next batch and see what happens.
Link Posted: 4/20/2016 6:04:37 PM EDT
Link Posted: 4/20/2016 7:30:30 PM EDT
Approximately 60 of them. 160g 40 S&W
Link Posted: 4/20/2016 9:41:21 PM EDT
Try swirling the container around for about 30 seconds, then shake it up and down for same time. The up and down motion is supposed to really help with the powder coverage.
Link Posted: 4/20/2016 10:05:44 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By epd230:
Try swirling the container around for about 30 seconds, then shake it up and down for same time. The up and down motion is supposed to really help with the powder coverage.
View Quote
This. The technique really made a difference for me. As did getting quality powder. I never could make HF red work, but I got some from Smoke4320 over at Castboolits and I have no trouble doing this in a wooden shed during the rain.

Swirl for 20-30 seconds and then up and down vigorously for 5 to 10.
Link Posted: 4/20/2016 10:26:58 PM EDT
Link Posted: 4/20/2016 11:11:05 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Flashbang1:
I tried the piggy back route and it too long for me to get good results.

I have noticed the powder behaves much better in the north east winter months rather the summer months.

Just like DF, I use black air soft BB's and a #5 plastic container.

I do 100-150 pistol bullets at a shake and bake session.

1 to 2 minutes shaking by hand gives me complete coverage.

I differ when it comes time to bake.

I dump the bullets out on hardware cloth, shake the hardware cloth a bit and into the oven they go.

They come out 99% coated in one coat and leave some very minor marks where they rest on the hardware cloth.

Just not worth it for me to use tweezers.
https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/--zHd1u3Dk8g/VfX0984hFAI/AAAAAAAAEY0/SR3Pfelfq4IC0ojgSihc2jD6yKMFYOTsACHM/s1280/upload_-1

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-1wjfJVLJB08/VgMMFrIeWWI/AAAAAAAAEZ0/-DXNDuEL5nU1abtP2XrsEAhEtMsh5S9OQCHM/s1280/upload_-1

View Quote


This is pretty much what I do except I use a metal vegetable strainer to catch the unemployment used powder. After that I put it on in the oven.
Link Posted: 4/21/2016 8:47:47 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By epd230:
Try swirling the container around for about 30 seconds, then shake it up and down for same time. The up and down motion is supposed to really help with the powder coverage.
View Quote



This was the missing trick for me boys!

Thanks a ton for the pro tip!

Link Posted: 4/22/2016 12:05:20 AM EDT
Link Posted: 4/22/2016 8:06:18 AM EDT
Yeah, I found the same thing. Just swirling around in the container doesn't give good coverage. I actually turn it upside down and swirl for about 15 seconds to let the powder on the bottom of the container work its way to the top and coat all the bullets. Works fine for me.
Link Posted: 4/23/2016 3:53:46 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/23/2016 4:07:31 PM EDT by 30Caliber]
So I've got the oven fired up out in the garage for another try at powdercoating. This time with dry tumbling instead of the electrostatic harbor freight system which is messy and a lot more slow going (but cove/img]rage is superb).

Built up 2 racks out of 1/4" galvanized steel mesh from HomeD. They're undersized by 1" on all sides which makes them easy to get in and out of the oven and I can get about 50-70 per shot. I'm standing them up on it, using my gloved hands to fish them out of the container.

Using a 0.75l #5 (that's the number inside the recycling triangle) square'ish container and some Harbor Freight RED. Red is much easier to get decent coating on the first go than the matte black which was requiring 2 goes (it may be that i opened that can of black 2 years ago). I find I can cut it 2 parts red and one part black and still get good results (pretty BADASS that is). I'm not going to obsess about 100% coverage.

I'm doing 2 handfulls of bullets for one flat tsp of powder, and they're coming out pretty good and the whole operation moves along pretty neatly. 10-15min in the convection oven (must be convection, trust me) at 400F.

BTW, the BB's I'm using are Crossman Elite 6mm 0.12grams and clear red.


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