Three Older Men Discuss Handloading

Copyright 2022 – Stephen Redgwell

Dave, Edmond and Ken

As always, Dave was the first to speak.

“I’m not as old as you guys, but learning the alchemy of handloading made me the man I am! After six years of university, and a few more working as an apprentice, I earned my MLT from MIT. It was a hard slog, that’s for sure!”

Ken saw another story coming and played along.

“That’s fascinating, Dave. All that studying, the assignments and your dissertation must have ate up all your time. By the way, what was your dissertation about? And what’s an MLT?”

Dave smiled and said, “I can remember it like it was yesterday. An MLT is a ‘Master of Load Technology’. I wrote a paper entitled, ‘The atmospherical air affects of the air on bullets in the air and stuff’. It took me about a year to get it figured out…”

Edmund looked puzzled. “But you didn’t graduate high school! You joined the army.”

“I think you have the events mixed up, Edmund. I believe Dave went into the army after graduating MIT. Isn’t that right, buddy?” Ken looked at Dave, waiting for an answer.

“Yes, that’s right. I left high school in grade 11 because I was so far ahead of everyone that the teachers had nothing left for me to learn. I wrote a paper which got me a scholarship at MIT and post military employment at Bio Sonic Technologies in Alberta. It’s all above your head, Edmond.”

“You went to MIT?”

“Yes. Canadian Industries Limited paid the bill. The Manitoba Institute of Technology was a great place to study…even in the winter!”

“I always wondered what MIT stood for. Now I know.” Ken struggled not to laugh.

“I will never forget the handloading classes. But it wasn’t cartridge assembly so much. I mean, there are only four components. But the nuances, oh man! Developing my own unique touch at the press made me. I learned about case/bullet friction, how to slowly heat primers to a specific temperature prior to seating. And of course, how to properly sift propellants to achieve a uniform burn rate! By the way, amateurs reload. Professionals handload. It’s a cut above for those of us who studied the art.”

Edmund scratched his head. “I thought you dropped out and became a cook.”

“Good heavens, no. After MIT, I joined the army as a scientist. Picatinny was my first post. I was lucky to get a plum like Pic. That’s where I started work on Bullet Balm.”

Ken kept the story going. “Oh yes. Bullet Balm. Of course. Why don’t you tell us about that?”

“I’d be glad to. Bullet Balm is a soft, creamy compound that you smear on bullets. It coats them and provides a frequency matched, Resonant Atmospheric Coating. You might have heard of ‘Hyper Wave, Progressive Ogive Technology’. That was my specialty. The technical term for what Bullet Balm does is ‘Turbulence Buffering, T-Plated Meplat Encapsulation’. That’s T for titanium, Edmund.”


Try and stay with me. It’s a coating that changes the airflow around the projectile. It does this by infusing a negative charge onto the bullet, which emits valance electrons as the bullet heats up in flight. Okay, Edmund?”

“I guess.”

“It’s simple. Heat created by air friction causes the reaction to start. Electrons pulse omnidirectionally around the bullet’s body. Bullet Balm reduces air friction. It smooths the forward direction and spin of the bullet. It keeps bullets accurately on track to the target!”

“I don’t follow…”

“I told you it was complicated, Edmund. It also reduces bullet deformation. Bullets are put under considerable stress as the powder begins to deflagrate. Pressure rises quickly and the associated temperature increase causes the bullet to become out of round, and less aerodynamic.

Bullet Balm uses what I called ‘layering technology’ to put a barrier between the bullet jacket and the air. The result? The bullet stays perfectly in shape with no deformation!”

Ken interrupted. “Why didn’t you ever get your doctorate?”

“No time. With all the conflicts going on in the world, there were more important things to do. I think of all the things that Bullet Balm does, I am most proud of while I call ‘puttying’. It fills in small nicks, gouges and weak spots on the jacket’s surface which can ruin accuracy and bullet integrity. This is especially important on impact. Small defects in any bullet can cause them to come apart prematurely, or not expand and function as designed. In effect, it creates a secondary shell for comprehensive jacket uniformity! Coated bullets cannot fail.”

“Well Edmund, now you know. Well done, Dave!”

Manitoba Institute of Technology – 1956