Another milestone today. Overnight, my ‘catch tray’ finished printing. In the thread over at Castboolits, a member that I’d already printed & boxed up an RCBS decap tray for expressed interest in my design. So, since I’m still cautiously jumping into this, he is my first official beta tester.
For those not familiar with swaging bullets, here’s a video showing cores being swaged to weight. They’re falling out into my new catch tray.
The lead cores you see were originally stick-on wheel weights (almost pure lead). They were melted and cast into rough cores using a purpose-built mold. These cores are what’s inside the jacket of a bullet. The rough cores are swaged to a specific weight (the weight of the cores + the weight of the jacket = the finished weight of the bullet). Consistency in weight is very important – these will become 55 grain FMJ bullets when they’re done.
When the cores are swaged, they are compressed under tremendous pressure, forcing the extra lead out through a hole in the side of the die (and into the small cup at the top of the press in the video). Then, when the handle of the press is lowered, the core is ejected and it drops into the catch tray.