303british.com

Home
6x45mm - new!
How are Rimfire Jacketed Bullets Made?
Why I Make Them
Cartridge Specs & Chronology
Cartridge Headstamps
The Accurate Lee Enfield
Shooting & Reloading the 303 British & 303 Epps
Musketry Regulations - WWI
Small Arms Training - WWII
Shooting 7.62x51mm Military Brass: Target Loads
Reloader's Notes: The 7.62x39mm
Load Data
303s on the Net: The Last 14 Years
Lithgow Wood
Reloading & Firearms Articles
AIA Rifles: The Conclusion
The Stevens 200
What About These Stevens Rifles?
Stevens 200 Aftermarket Triggers
A 7.62x39 Bolt Action
Rimfires I Like
The 308 Winchester H&R Survivor Rifle
Paco's Acu'rzr - for 22LR ammunition
Ontario Gun Shops
About Steve
Contact Me

How are Rimfire Jacketed Bullets Made?

59.5to59.812.jpg
press1.jpg

How are they made? (Briefly) 
 
The bullet cores start as coils of lead wire.  I cut the wire into smaller pieces and squeeze them into perfect little cylinders, so that they will fit inside the bullet jackets. 
 
I process fired 22 rimfire cases into jackets in stages. First, I sort the cases by headstamp, and clean them ultrasonically.  Next, I unfold the rims and heat treat the jackets.  Then, I tumble them in a bath with stainless steel pins to remove the crust that forms on the outside of the case during heat treatment.  The stainless steel pins also remove any remaining powder residue from inside and give the jackets a dull shine.  In the pictures above, you can see the processed rimfire cases with lead cores inserted (on left), but not pressed into the jackets.  On the right, a core about to be pressed into a jacket using a bullet press.
 
 To make bullets, you squish little lead cylinders into bullet jackets, form a point, clean up and finish the tips. Whether it's done on big, industrial presses like the ones used by Sierra or Nosler, or a small operation like mine, the same steps have to be performed.  In my shop, I use three presses and other equipment to make bullets. 
 
In addition to the presses, I have several core cutters - to cut the coils of wire into smaller pieces; two ultrasonic cleaners - to remove dirt and grit from the cases; two tumblers - to buff the finished bullets; two electronic scales - to verify the weights; a small pneumatic press, and a pile of hand tools.

bulletsontray.jpg
59.5to59.8.jpg

After the bullets have been completely formed, the work is still not over. They have to be washed in solvent, to remove any remaining lube and tumbled in corn cob. The last part is to sort the bullets by weight, and bag and box everything. You can see the weight tag inside the plastic bag below. None of the bullets are exactly 60 or 65 grains.  They are weighed and kept to a tolerance of less than one (1) percent however! 
 
By weighing each bullet and sorting the rimfire cases by headstamp, the end product is better.  Are they benchrest quality?  No, but they are well made varmint bullets, formed from recycled material.  That's good for the environment, but bad for Wiley Coyote! 
 
I don't have to do anything special to reload them.  I use either 60 or 65 grain data, depending on the weight of the bullet.

59.5to59.8bagged.jpg
boxed60s.jpg

Coyote_Yosemite.jpg