Author Topic: Pan Lube 101  (Read 15799 times)

Lou Graham

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Pan Lube 101
« on: October 17, 2005, 05:43:41 PM »
<Note: this is Driftwood Johnson's Original Version to me, personally, complete with jokes>

Pan Lubing 101-Not Rocket Science

Run down to the Piggly Wiggly and buy yourself a couple of teflon coated circular cake pans that you're going to dedicate to pan lubing. Mine are about 8" in diameter. I actually have 4. 2 for 44 and 2 for 45. The reason I differentiate between the two will become clear later. While you
« Last Edit: February 05, 2007, 10:59:52 AM by John Boy »
Lou Graham, APOMO, LOOG #1

"You can never be too thin, too rich or have too much ammo"

Loyal Order of GOOFBALLS #1
Congress of Rough Riders of CT.
CT. Valley Bushwackers
GAF #311

John Boy

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Re: Pan Lube 101
« Reply #1 on: October 17, 2005, 09:52:10 PM »
Thanks Lou, I 'lost' the copy of DJ's write up!  :kiss1:
I go a bit further than DJ putting the cake in the fridge ... mine goes in the chest freezer until the lube is rock hard.  Punching or pushing the bullets out leaves the web more intact and less lube gets on the fingers. Especially when making a batch of Dick Dastardly's Pearl Lube
Regards
John
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Devote Convert to BPCR

Lt. Col. J. Mark Flint

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Re: Pan Lube 101
« Reply #2 on: October 18, 2005, 09:01:51 AM »
I whole heartedly endorse this method and would not pan lube if I hadn't tried this.

I make a few alterations such as I do the whole process on cookie sheets and simply cut the sheet of wax and bullets in half The cake breaks for me, but I just piece it together as well as I can without much effort and add some hard lube to keep my level high enough.

I melt lube out at the lowest possible temperature and with multiple layers of paper towels.  I forego the dumping onto clean paper towels.  My oven was set at 150.  This allows things to cool off faster and is less likely to harden the already hardcast bullets by heat treating them.  In fact, the lower temperatures we use in pan lubing may well draw some temper out of the hardcast bullets.  At 200 I doubt there is any real difference other than the potential for a burn is reduced with my method.

I hate to admit t, but I melt my lube in the microwave on a reduced power setting to pour the initial cake.  I mix my lube in a double boiler though.

My lube has included parrafin as a supplement to beeswax and I learned that it doesn't cause any difficulties when used in quantities of 1/3 parrafin 2/3 beeswax-it does however save some money.  I may even try to add a little soy wax to my next batch.  One other thing I use is olive oil added to the mix in place of appx 20% of the crisco.  It is all sort of hit or miss as to measurements though as when it hardens I am looking for the proper consistency. 

Out of the fridge it should be hard and not quite brittle.  At 72 degrees it should be a bit more pliable, but not "mushy"  and at body temperature, ie a piece that has been handled, it should be soft enough to press into a lube groove and still firm enough to leave the groove filled when you wipe across it. You have a lot of leeway here.  With the big lube bullets a different consistency may help to fill them and allow the lube to shear easily, though the batch I lubed worked fine-I did discover they need a bit more room between them than the spacing I leave for my harcast relubes.
"I'm a strong believer in teaching the value of the three "R's"  Retribution, reckoning and revenge!" J. Mark Flint

Old Top

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Re: Pan Lube 101
« Reply #3 on: October 18, 2005, 11:57:43 AM »
Lou,

I remember right after this post and you tried the pan lube, you had visitors that got rid of most of your efforts.  That was a good post fell off my chair reading it I was laughing so hard.

Old Top
I only shoot to support my reloading habit.

Lou Graham

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Re: Pan Lube 101
« Reply #4 on: October 18, 2005, 05:56:48 PM »
Old Top, you must be talking about how the mouse ate my ammo ;D
Lou Graham, APOMO, LOOG #1

"You can never be too thin, too rich or have too much ammo"

Loyal Order of GOOFBALLS #1
Congress of Rough Riders of CT.
CT. Valley Bushwackers
GAF #311

John Boy

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Re: Pan Lube 101
« Reply #5 on: October 18, 2005, 07:28:09 PM »
... and that was only the first page of the story, if I remembers correctly ... ya Big Game Hunter Lou
Regards
John
SASS ~ Darkside WartHog ~ SBSS (OGB, w/Star) ~ SCORRS
GAF Bvt 1st LT, Atlantic Division Scouts
Devote Convert to BPCR

Gringo Jack

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Re: Pan Lube 101
« Reply #6 on: October 30, 2005, 08:29:51 AM »
Man!!! Ovens?...Freezers? :usabig:

 I use a heat gun to strip off the smokless lube with paper towls. Then I use it to heat up my lube 50/50 beeswax and crisco in a small cake pan, set bullets in  setting upright. As lube hardens I use an over size shell case that slips over the bullet to cut it out of the lube. It works great after you get a system going, and no wasted time waiting for things to cool or melt off.

Later
Gringo Jack ;)
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You've got me here, a thousand of you, now do your worst!"

Driftwood Johnson

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Re: Pan Lube 101
« Reply #7 on: June 18, 2013, 06:47:21 PM »
Hey!

What happened? Did Pan Lubing 101 get erased?

I have a copy if anybody wants me to post it again.
He'll feel a lot better after he's robbed a couple of banks.

Hedley Lamarr

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Re: Pan Lube 101
« Reply #8 on: June 18, 2013, 08:06:00 PM »
Driftwood, please do post it. Don't know what happened.
Hedley Lamarr

"There's a special rung in hell reserved for people who waste good scotch." - Lt. Archie Hickox

Lou Graham

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Re: Pan Lube 101
« Reply #9 on: June 23, 2013, 07:02:07 PM »
I still have my pard Driftwood's directions............
 
Pan Lubing 101-Not Rocket Science
 
 Run down to the Piggly Wiggly and buy yourself a couple of teflon coated circular cake pans that you're going to dedicate to pan lubing. Mine are about 8" in diameter. I actually have 4. 2 for 44 and 2 for 45. The reason I differentiate between the two will become clear later. While youíre at it, pick up a cookie sheet that you'll dedicate to melting lube out of your hardcast bullets. I'm assuming you're starting with regular hardcast bullets. You might also want to pick up a really cheap double boiler to melt your lube in. I use a cheap pot that I balance precariously in a bigger pot of boiling water. Buy lots of paper towels too.
 
 Step 1
 
 Melt the hard lube out of your hardcast bullets. Turn on the oven to 200 degrees F. Lay a few sheets of paper towels in your cookie sheet. Count out 100 bullets and lay them flat, not standing up, on the paper towel. Throw them in the oven and go find something else to do for 1/2 hour, like watching old reruns of I Love Lucy. The hard lube will melt out of the grooves and the paper towel will wick it out. I like to do this in multiples of 50, so I can load up each of my pans with 50 bullets.
 
 Step 2
 
 Melt your lube. You could do this while waiting for your hard lube to melt out instead of watching Lucy. I use a 50/50 mix of beeswax and Crisco. It hardens up to a good consistency for pan lubing. I suspect part of your problem was how hard or soft your lube was. I start with pure beeswax I buy at a craft store. Cut off a chunk of beeswax, maybe 1/4 pound. Throw it in your double boiler and scoop out a glob of Crisco about the same size. Eyeball measuring is close enough, don't get to fancy, this ain't Rocket Science. Keep your eye on this stuff while it melts, it's flammable.
 
 Step 3
 
 Take the bullets out of the oven. Don't turn off the oven, just leave it right at 200 degrees F. The paper towel in the pan will be soaked with melted lube. Lay out another couple of sheets of paper towels on the counter and dump your naked bullets onto them. Roll the bullets around in the towels while they're still hot to rub off some of the remaining lube, be careful, they're hot. You won't get all the lube off. A little thin coating left behind is OK. This ain't Rocket Science.
 
 Step 4
 
 Place 50 bullets, pointy side up in each of your pans. Space them so that they are at least ľĒ apart from each other and ľĒ from the edge of the pan. Neatness doesnít count. Put your pans on a flat level surface and carefully pour enough melted lube into each pan to cover the bullets just up over the lube grooves. If you donít need all your lube, just set it aside to harden in your pot. You can use chunks of it later to replenish your pans when you need to. Youíll probably pour some down on top of a few bullets, and youíll probably jostle a few bullets around. Thatís OK, while the lube is still molten, just push the ones that moved back so that everything is well spaced again. Donít sweat the ones that got some poured on top, you can rub that off with your thumb later. Leave the pans undisturbed for Ĺ hour while you go catch up on the latest Star Trek episode.
 
 Step 5
 
 Drop the bullets out of the pans. Thereís a whole bunch of ways to do this, and I suspect this is where you got in trouble. First, you have to get the Ďbullet cakeí out of the pan. Itís a little tough to do at room temperature. After cooling on the counter for Ĺ hour, your bullet cakes will still be a little bit soft. I like to throw my pans into the fridge for just a little while to harden up the lube a little bit. I think this is the real secret. If the lube is a little bit stiff, it will separate from the pan better, and it will shear off from the main body of the cake and stay in the groove easier. I leave them in the fridge until everything is a little bit cool. But not too cool. Take them out and separate the bullet cake from the pan just like your mom taught you how to do by jerking the pan up sharply a couple of times until the cake breaks free. The cake may have already shrunk away from the sides of the pan and made this easier. Some folks separate the bullets by pushing the whole mass out at once. Others like to use a cookie cutter of some sort. I like to sit in front of the TV with Mrs Johnson and push them out one at a time while watching reruns of Law and Order. I just carefully push them out with thumb pressure. Itís easier to push them out from the pointy end, but I find the lube shears off cleaner in the groove if I push them out from the base. This is why you kept all the bullets separated by ľĒ. It leaves a web of material between the holes so you donít break the cake. Dump your pan lubed bullets into a Tupperware container. If any bullets get an incomplete groove fill, smoosh a little more lube in with your thumb. When youíre done, youíll have your empty bullet cakes full of holes. Now hereís the secret. DONíT MELT THE LUBE AGAIN. Just put the empty bullet cakes, which have 50 perfect holes in them, back in the pans. If the cakes broke in a couple of pieces, just line the pieces back up in the pans as best as you can. The trick is to maintain the cakes with 50 holes in them, which youíre gonna refill with bullets. Thatís why I keep separate pans for separate calibers. The holes will be custom fit to each caliber.
 
 Step 6
 
 Next time you are gonna pan lube, either right now or next week, just fill up the holes with bullets. Donít melt the lube and pour it over the bullets again. Place the pan right in your 200 degree oven, and go watch old reruns of Gunsmoke for Ĺ hour. In a half hour, all the lube will have melted and filled up the grooves again. This is the tricky part. Using the fancy embroidered pot holders you made in Home Economics class, carefully take the pans out and set them onto the counter to cool. If youíre not extraordinarily careful, the bullets will slide around in the pans. Thatís OK too, set the pans down and push the bullets around while the lube is still molten, just like before, to space them out again. Thatís it. Go watch an old rerun of Sugarfoot while waiting for your bullets to cool and then return to Step 5. Donít melt your lube again.
 
 On bullet melting night, I would usually start the oven up, melt the lube out of 200 bullets on one level of the oven and be melting loaded pans on the other level. Every half hour I come back and juggle stuff to the next step. I got to watch a lot of TV in between. Every once in a while youíll want to replenish the lube in your bullet cakes. Just drop a few chunks of lube onto the cakes when you put them in the oven. It will melt when the cake melts. If you time it right, on bullet melting night you just keep taking trips back to the oven every half hour to advance to the next step. No muss no fuss. Last night I lubrisized 200 PRS bullets while watching TV. Took me about 2 Ĺ hours and I had to handle each and every bullet. Pan lubing is automatic and you just handle stuff every Ĺ hour.
 
 When my bullets come out of the pans, they usually have a little skim of lube on the bases. I just leave it right there, I don't bother to clean it off. I don't leave my ammo in the hot sun, and that little bit of lube has never caused any problem contaminating my powder. If some lube has migrated up onto the tops of my bullets, I may or may not clean it off. If they're going into the magazine of my rifle, I'll usually clean it off, so it doesn't attract gunk and clog up the magazine. If they're going into a revolver, I don't bother. I know Doc looked at some of my loads once and declared them to be 'messy', but they shoot just fine.
 
 Did I mention this ainít Rocket Science?
 
Lou Graham, APOMO, LOOG #1

"You can never be too thin, too rich or have too much ammo"

Loyal Order of GOOFBALLS #1
Congress of Rough Riders of CT.
CT. Valley Bushwackers
GAF #311