The Cookbook

First is powder. After trying everything from 2400 to H4831 with mediocre to decent results, I’ve come to settle on one cast rifle bullet propellant that gives superb results — Accurate 5744, now a product of Hodgdon. Lyman’s Cast Bullet Handbook 4th Edition gives many loads for 5744. I’ll also mention some of my favorites at the end but before I want to give one caveat — don’t worry if 5744 leaves a few unburned powder kernels in rifle barrels! The important thing is how close to one another the bullets strike targets! I’ve been questioned about this many times and my reply is always, “How about accuracy?” The answer is usually “Great.” Enough said. A firm crimp of case mouth to bullet will greatly reduce unburned powder.

Next is the topic of bullet molds. My battle rifle molds come from Lyman and Redding/SAECO, and all are double cavity. I don’t sort bullets by cavity or weigh them for consistency. They only get a casual look-over while sizing and lubing. Lube can be anything on the market but since I’m also an avid black powder cartridge shooter, I stick to lubricants specifically labeled for black powder such as SPG and DGL. The first is now located in Missouri and the latter in Idaho. Incidentally, both are also great smokeless powder lubes. I use them for all cast bullet shooting.