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Brian Enos's Forums... Maku mozo!

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I whipped up a casting machine over the weekend to make it easier and faster to cast bullets. I already had a Lee bottom-pour pot and an RCBS mould, so I built the machine around those two components. I watched several videos of the Magma Engineering Master Caster and felt that the design was simple enough to duplicate. I bought the shaft, shaft collars, mounted bearings and some steel and had the rest lying around.

Short video of the machine in action:

Finished bullets drop into a 50-cal ammo can and the sprues are dropped into a 30-cal can.

Overall, I am happy with the results but I need to add a squirrel cage blower to speed up the cooling process and increase the output. The 20lb pot is probably going to end up being too small and I predict (with the blower), I will be able to outrun the smelting capability of the pot. The real Magma has a larger pot, pours both cavities at once, and is a one-handed operation, but my version cost me a lot less and I can use off-the-shelf RCBS moulds.

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Sweet !! one question, what opens the molds for bullet drop, are the arms spring loaded ? couldn't tell from video

Fred

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It's the "V" shape at the bottom of the first photo and holding them open in the last one. The bottom of the mold carriers hit them and open the mold. The magma's and mine are spring loaded to close them.

caster4.jpg

I built my own too and automated it as well. Looks like you have conquered the hard part and I bet you could make another pot easy with your skills.

I made mine out of a section of heavy wall pipe and a 3500 watt oven element. It will hold over 60 lbs of lead.

caster5.jpg

Edited by jmorris

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I can tell you that this guy is like the MacGuyver of the garage. Really handy to know.

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jmorris nailed it, v-blocks to open the mould and a spring to close it.

jmorris - nice work, do you run a blower on your machine?

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Sometimes, depends on the conditions. I like to use it in the winter if I have a choice.

I have two timers on mine. One for the pour cycle and the other to allow the molds to be cooled.

This thread is about 8 years old but likely the most information on the one I built. http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=158478&highlight=Master+caster

At what rate are you able to run without a blower and what bullets are you casting?

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I am casting a 200gr 40 cal bullet and I haven't yet measured the output. At the rate in the video, we are looking at 800/hr, but when it starts taking a while for the lead to freeze, that slows down quite a bit. Once the blower is mounted, I'll measure the time and see how many I can realistically make with stocking the pot, etc in an hour.

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Ok, for mine to run continually for 3 hrs or so (one pot full casting 230's) I had to slow it down around 500 an hour.

800/hr may be hard to sustain unless you can come up with a way to cool them down even faster than a blower can. Maybe solider some copper or aluminum tube to the mold and water cool.?

Even Magma's Mark 8, while casting 4000 bullets an hour, is using 8 sets of molds to do so.

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Maybe solider some copper or aluminum tube to the mold and water cool.?

That is an interesting idea. There is enough material in the mold block that water passages could be drilled into each half (think engine block), tapped for small fittings and connected with silicone hoses and a recirculating pump...

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