Handling small gas checks

  • Last Post 29 May 2020
Balhincher posted this 11 May 2020

Recently while adding gas checks to some tumble lubed .25 cal bullets I made a serendipitous discovery. The gas checks were being applied by running the bullet into a sizer having a diameter the same as the bullet as cast. No lube was added in the process leaving only the liquid Alox film. Handling small gas checks always challenges my dexterity and often ends with checks rolling around the bench and sprinkled over the floor. 

I was dumping checks into a lid then pressing the bullet base into the ones that were upright before seating with the sizer. Of course, about half of the checks were cup side down as dumped into the lid so to use that half flipping them over was required. This is where the dexterity deficiency was troublesome. Picking up each little copper cup to turn it over was not easy. My fingers were a bit tacky from handling the lubed bullets so I was trying to just press my fingertip on the check, have it stick as I lifted my finger to grab it, then flip it over. I quickly observed that with the right amount of finger stickiness, the check would lift a bit with my finger then come loose and fall back into the lid but would flip over to land "right" side up. Taking advantage of this discovery I was able to not only flip the checks very quickly but keep the little buggers front jumping off the bench most of the time. 

This won't revolutionize reloading or even sizing and gas checking cast bullets, but I thought I'd pass it along in case someone wants to give it a try. It always amuses me to find some little kink or twist that makes a task easier. 

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Spindrift posted this 11 May 2020

I use my Lyman primer flip tray.

1) pour gas checks on tray

2) pick up the ones who are facing the «right» direction

3) put on the lid, flip the tray over and open it ->

4) the remaining checks are now facing the right way, in the lid.

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Paul Pollard posted this 11 May 2020

Try putting bullets and gas checks (loose) in a tumbler. Run it for awhile and check to see. The gas checks should miraculously attach to the bullets! It works with 30 cal gas checks and bullets in a rotary tumbler; I don’t if it works in a vibratory tumbler.

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beltfed posted this 28 May 2020


What is the quality of the bullets after they have been tumbled, regardless if the gas check find their way on to the bullet bases?


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Paul Pollard posted this 29 May 2020


At the 2008 Nationals, Dave Lee answered all my questions about how he and the Pacific Northwest crew shot so well. He said he put his bullets (linotype) with a pinch of moly, gas checks and steel BB's into a rotary tumbler. After tumbling for a while, the gas checks would attach themselves to the bullets and the moly put a light coating on the bullets. He would then size the bullet and add conventional bullet lube. 

If you have seen how Dave shot, the tumbling didn't seem to affect the bullets any. 

For a time, I tried moly coating with my 6mm bullets, following Dave's method, and could find no damage to them. They shot ok, but gave it up as too much extra work.

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