This topic contains 12 replies, has 7 voices, and was last updated by  Bodean98 2 years, 7 months ago.

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  • #46381
     Butch Wax 
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    I never used to be a fan of Lee moulds, but that’s changed when THEY changed how they made em.

    A while back I was needing a mould for a .45Colt. With some success with a couple of the new style Lee’s I went for the 200gr RNFP.

    I don’t use bottom poured, and the Lee works fine with an old Ideal dipper from my earlier days. Just enough pressure to fill out but not make fins. Casts great, sizes good and the single lube groove actually is just right. The nose resembles a round patio table, its so big!

     

    With proper loads it shoots remarkably straight in both the 45Colt and the 45ACP. Yes, a “cowboy bullet” in an auto and an unaltered 1911A1 and plain G.I. mags. In short, this is a great bullet, and accuracy is one of its attributes along with smooth casting and loading.  Pretty impressive for a recycled beer can mould. No leading. Accurate. Huge meplat. Affordable. I haven’t found a down side. Think I’ll get the 255gr version in a bit for those heavy-duty big boy loads.

    And to think that I used to throw Lee moulds into the woods or smash em on an anvil!

  • #46389
     Harter 
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    I have both of those in the 6C , the 452-200 and 462-255 RNFP , the 200 is very close with my 50/50 stuff and straight range metal from jacketed cores at 454-204 the 255 however runs 454-264+-1 . Not that the Ruger or the Schofield loaded 1917 Schofield conversion care much but a worthwhile note . 2% isn’t a big deal but 10-12 gr in an SAA or vintage 1911 etc might be an unpleasant surprise .

    Both shoot well in 2 1917s , 2 M92’s , a Henry and a BlackHawk in ACP and Colts . The 200 remains untested in the High Point Carbine but the 255 fed and cycled giving better than expected groups and good speeds well inside load data .

  • #46392
     Goodsteel 
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    I agree. It seems they do listen to their customers. At least those who are left who actually cast and shoot premium bullets. The new molds are truly worth the money. That won’t stop me from using NOE and Accurate every chance I get, but I don’t turn my nose up at the new Lee molds.

  • #46408
     Rattlesnake Charlie 
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    I guess I haven’t seen one of the “new” Lee molds. I have several of the 6-cavity molds that are 5 years old and several of the 2-cavity molds that are probably 15 – 20 years old. They have always worked for me. I do have problems keeping the sprue plates tight.

  • #46410
     Butch Wax 
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    The new Lee’s are much improved. Left handed screw on the sprueplate. Damn near self tightening. The mould pins align correctly now thanks to redesign. And spiral cut ventilation grooves. They function well now. I have smashed a couple of the earlier models on my anvil before it was stolen by crackheads. And later thrown some into my woods out of sheer frustration. But the new ones are quite good. Coming from a confirmed iron mould guy, that’s quite a statement.

    And to be honest, the only reason I kept trying with the earlier Lee moulds was that some of their bullet design’s were intriguing. Otherwise I would have left them alone and stayed with all iron. But things have changed since the old cheezy Lee’s and I’m glad they have. I really do like this 200gr RNFP Lee’s got now. Casts great, shoots remarkably straight, and hits hard. Today’s Lee moulds are right.

    As a retired old coot living on a pension that’s thin, I have no complaints about the cost either. I cast only for myself and have no need for large capacity moulds. Don’t need any high dollar “boutique bullet moulds” as old Ideal, Lyman, RCBS, and the new Lee’s are just fine for me.

  • #46411
     Doc44 
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    I have used the old style mold of this same bullet for many years as my go to plinking and general use bullet in the 45acp. I also use the 44 caliber verion of the same bullet in special and magnum cases.

  • #46413
     Butch Wax 
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    Yup, got the 200gr RNFP in .429 as well. Casts a great bullet. Unfortunately it’s a might undersized and leads the hell outta my .44 pistol. So it sits in the “nice, but I don’t use it now” mould box.

    • #46424
       Larry Gibson 
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      I have an old style 452-200-RF that I’ve cast a lot of bullets with w/o problem.  I then got a 6 cavity which I use now w/o problem.

       

      The only Lee moulds of which I have an old and new is the C312-185-1R.  The old is a single cavity I got back in the mid ’70s.  I’ve cast a lot of bullets with it and also with the new 2 cavity mould.

       

      I’ve numerous Lee moulds along with other makes of aluminum moulds and have had them since the mid ’70s also.  I’ve never had one go bad on me but then I quit using a mallet or anything else to whack open the sprue plate.  I also properly lubricate them and pay attention during casting.  I use thick leather gloves and open/cut the sprue with the glove hand.  If something loosens up or the blocks are closing right I stop and correct the problem.  I expect to get many more thousands of cast bullets from all my Lee moulds.

       

      I also learned a long time ago about “speed” casting for quantity…..slow is smooth and smooth is fast……..

      That means go slow and smooth and in the end you end up with more quality bullets with a lot less rejects and you’re not wasting a lot of time messing with the equipment.   When I’m casting bullets my objective is to cast bullets.  Taking care of the equipment before, during and after use means a bigger pile of bullets in the end.

       

      Larry Gibson

  • #46416
     Rattlesnake Charlie 
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    If anyone has used one of the “old” models and one of the “new”models in the same bullet size/weight/design, please let us know of your experience.

  • #46417
     Bodean98 
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    I have one of them and if anyone wants it they can have what’s left of it!

    Mine must have been a lemon. I didn’t get more than 100 casts before the locating pins moved. I noticed finning and the boolits were looking a bit odd. I stopped casting to inspect and discovered the blocks were terribly misaligned and the locator pins had receded into the block allowing this to happen. I tried many different fixative measures up to and including peening the block to hold the pins in place. The only thing that worked for me was the afore mentioned anvil treatment and the purchase of an Accurate mold.

    I do like the design of the boolit and the few acceptable casts I got were very good, but the Lee mold soured me pretty good.

    I have other Lee molds that work just fine and I have no complaints but this one was a real bummer!

  • #46428
     Harter 
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    I had the old style double , I probably cast a 2000 or more . I replaced it with a 6C . I have a couple the new style doubles same old pour , cut , tap ,tap , close , bump close , close the sprue , pour it again . Less bump and tap when the handles are tight .

    I had a mould I had to put the inserts back in but to be honest I don’t know if it was a Lee 6 or double or an NOE now and it happened during the heat cycles .

  • #46432
     Butch Wax 
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    Well, my intention here was to state that the new and improved Lee moulds are good. They cast well, and the bullet design are accurate, reliable, and for the most part, just plain good looking too.

    I didn’t intend to spark any controversy, rather merely to express the results of their merits and such. As an old man who was raised on iron moulds, when aluminum moulds first appeared it was different, but not unacceptable. I have some of the original single cavity Lee moulds I got in the 70’s. They’re great.  But like Larry, I take care of my equipment and do not force things. As such my gear remains inspection ready at all times.

    I do not have, nor can afford, the custom and special order moulds. They simply are too much. Further, to be fair I have dozens of Ideal, Lyman, RCBS, and Lee moulds. Other than the mould reviewed here, I don’t require or need others. So for the minimal amount I spent on this mould and the superb results from it, and the bullet it produces, it’s a winner in my world.

  • #46433
     Bodean98 
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    My apologies to the OP and the group if my post seemed contentious. That was not my intent. I did not intend to appear to be a hardware snob either. I only intended to relay my experience with this particular mold and my ultimate solution. I did not try the mold once and give up. The many fixative measures were tested by casting with it, but all failed for me. I tried various glues(locktite,JB weld) and even peening the pins in their holes and they all came loose in short order. If I tilted the mold just right on closing, it would last a little longer but still fail. I have not had this problem with my other Lee molds. Just this one example.

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