Repairing a Steel Mold...(adding new life...)

Discussion in '"Boolit" Casting' started by SubGunFan, Sep 28, 2011.

  1. SubGunFan

    SubGunFan Distinguished Poster MSGO Supporter

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    OK Bel, Doggoner and others..... tonight I got the chance to work on my "new" H&G 6C 350gr 45-70 bullet mold.

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    The "subject" needing some TLC................



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    Before................ :(



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    After................ :) NOTE: This mold had rusted pretty good sometime in its past. There is some pitting.

    The following are pictures and my method for repairing this mold.



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    The tools needed for the first step............... The cavities.



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    I used a big wad of OO steel wool on a plastic gun cleaning patch holder. ONLY use a PLASTIC holder.



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    After using the drill to spin the steel wool in the cavities, blow the mold off COMPLETELY with canned air. I don't recommend air from a compressor due to the water in that air. Canned air is moisture free.......



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    Tools for the next step.



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    Deburring the sprue plate. NOTE: What I did is not as bad as it looks in the picture.... :)



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    The mold ready for casting........... I left out some of the details to save time. I will answer your questions with more of the details.



    NOTE: This repair work is meant ONLY for STEEL molds. Do NOT use steel wool on aluminium or brass molds.

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  2. doggoner

    doggoner Distinguished Poster

    SGF

    Thank you for the demo. You are 100% correct about a compressor being wet. Unless you have one of the commerical air dryers, a home compressor is more like a drip irrigation system gone mad. Do you have any tips for the Lee type molds? They always seem to have a chip or two on the bottom of the sprue plate that scratches the top of the mold the first time you swing the sprue plate open. Do you remove the sprue plate and sand it flat with sandpaper on a steel plate or glass plate? Also, Lee recommends lubing the sprue plate and alignment "pins" before use. What do you use? I've used RCBS case lube with mixed results. I'll post this now as the list could go on all night. I'll write my questions down and we'll talk some at the Nov 5th doings.



    Doggoner
     

  3. SubGunFan

    SubGunFan Distinguished Poster MSGO Supporter

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    Doggoner.... for LEE molds a single-edge razorblade and a special dremil wheel are your friends......... Post some of your questions here to help others........ Although I have bought some mold lube (group buy), I still have not used any.........

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  4. captain-03

    captain-03 Moderator Staff Member MSGO Supporter

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    SGF - what size boolit does that thing drop - actual? Hope about increassing the drop size and remove those pits?
     
  5. bubbat

    bubbat Gatekeeper to my corner of Hell.

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    :HJ:

    You can build a water trap out of pre threaded pipe and fitting from somewhere like Home Depot or Lowes to get most of the water out of a home compressor system. Need to drain it about every other day. We would build these and put them every 50-75 feet in the air lines in the cotton gins we built. Probably wouldn't need but one in a home air system close to the compressor

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  6. doggoner

    doggoner Distinguished Poster

    Got inspired by SubGunFan to tackle my new Lee molds. I addressed the sprue plates as the molds cast fairly well. No venting problems,boolits drop ok, etc,etc. WARNING- If you try this and ruin your mold, IT AIN'T MY FAULT. Let's get started.

    First, the tools etc. I used a flat file, phillips screw driver, and RCBS case lube. I removed the sprue plate from the mold. BE CAREFUL here, the screw may bring the threads with it when you take it out. Slow and easy is the name of the game here.

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    This is the mold with the sprue plate removed. As you can see, it's pretty rough. The plate needs some attention. I used a flat file and draw filed the surface to remove the burrs and smooth it up.

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    Here the filing is done. Notice the bright spots. Those were burrs before.

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    Now it's lube the sprue plate,sprue plate screw and reassemble. You don't use much lube and please try to keep the lube out of the mold cavities. The first pic shows the TOTAL amount for the sprue plate bottom and the mold top.

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    Put a small amount on the screw.

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    Reassembled and all better. Notice I LIGHTLY draw filed the top of the mold. Did I mention I LIGHTLY draw filed the mold. Do so at your own risk. Again, if you try this and ruin your mold, it ain't MY fault.

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    I hope this helps some of you folks. It did wonders to my molds. The sprue plates glide open and closed now without scraping the mold top. Good luck if you try is.



    Doggoner
     
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  7. Beladran

    Beladran Moderator Staff Member

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    500gr wet dry paper usually does the trick if i need to touch up the top of the mold and bottom of spru plate unless i done carved a trench in it = (
     
  8. SubGunFan

    SubGunFan Distinguished Poster MSGO Supporter

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    I plan on casting with this mold Saturday morning. We will find out then what we get...................... (Good... Bad... maybe Ugly...)

    At this time I don't care to try to remove the pitting. That will take major and tricky work................

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  9. SubGunFan

    SubGunFan Distinguished Poster MSGO Supporter

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    I use a single-edge razorblade to find burrs. The little blue thing in the pictures is the razorblade in a holder. The dremil wheel is NOT a stone wheel. It is a hard rubber wheel with very light grit.

    I also use the razorblade to remove lead that might stick to the sprue plate.

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  10. M1GarandFan

    M1GarandFan Distinguished Poster

    Very good info SGF & Doggoner! Now I have an idea what to do when those issues arise with my molds one day. Thank you for posting this. :thumbup:
     
  11. doggoner

    doggoner Distinguished Poster

    Beladran

    I dredged up this old post as SubGunFan did a GREAT job on this old mold. Maybe some tips for you??????

    doggoner
     
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  12. SubGunFan

    SubGunFan Distinguished Poster MSGO Supporter

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    Thanks Doggoner. WOW, 2011...... farther back than I thought.

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  13. Ellis93

    Ellis93 Distinguished Poster MSGO Supporter

    Well this is an information nugget.....this needs to be pinned post or sticky?!?! Whatever it's called.
     
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  14. Beladran

    Beladran Moderator Staff Member

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    So in the jewelry manufactoring world metal molds are used. So I figured some of these guys must run into this problem. So I called a friend and sent a pic to him. He said do an electrolysis bath for about an hour.
     
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  15. SubGunFan

    SubGunFan Distinguished Poster MSGO Supporter

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    Sorry for the Photobucket error images above. Those pics were from long ago. Many years ago I left Photobucket because it became a PITA to use even after paying to stop ads and other garbage.

    ETA: I just checked on the "Photobucket Image Hijack" and it would cost $400/yr to get them to display. CRAP ON THAT ! ! !

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    Last edited: Jan 17, 2018
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  16. Ellis93

    Ellis93 Distinguished Poster MSGO Supporter

    Edit your original post. And insert ~original inside the image link right before the last [ img]. Pic should work again.
     
  17. Beladran

    Beladran Moderator Staff Member

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    Photo bucket = extortion
     
  18. Ellis93

    Ellis93 Distinguished Poster MSGO Supporter

    Yeah I'm not paying it either. I have multiple writups and how tos on a first gen dodge forum that all went to hell when photobucket started their extortion program.
    Lots of hours put in adding ~original to the links.