12 ga. .690 Round Ball

Round Ball

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I have been shooting deer for over 30 years using a .690 diameter Round Ball in various 12 ga. shotguns, and have thoroughly enjoyed every single hunt that I have been on.

Wild hogs! I have never shot one with a Round Ball that has ever had a good thing to say about it. BANG! SMACK! FLOP! Just like that.

I know of 2 Cape Buffalo, a Zebra, Wildebeest and a couple of Warthogs that have been shot with my Round Ball loads. Guns used were an H&H Paradox, and my Remington 870 with a 34" Hastings Wadlock barrel with an extended full choke tube.

Lead has been mixed with antimony and will produce a Round Ball with a BHN reading of 22.

IMG_20210720_094105~2.jpg


Modified .690 mold and lead ladel for keeping the lead and antimony stirred and fluxed.
IMG_20210720_094128.jpg


The mold has been "smoked" and the first Round Ball is just as perfect as the last.
IMG_20210720_133301.jpg


One batch of Round Balls have been molded and are ready for the next step.
IMG_20210720_134642~2.jpg


All Round Balls have sprues on them.
IMG_20210722_125620~2.jpg


After a batch of Round Balls are made, they are put in a vibratory case polisher for 30 hours. This removes the sprue as well as any other imperfections that may have been caused by the molding process.
IMG_20210720_135812~2.jpg


IMG_20210720_135555~2.jpg


Once polished, these Round Balls will weigh within 2/10 th. of a grain from each other, and roundness is held within .0004 around the complete circumference, with measurements taken at 5 random points on each Round Ball tested.
IMG_20210722_130132~2.jpg


A 1/4" wool felt is inserted into each wad, and a Round Ball is nestled on top of that.
IMG_20210722_134907~2.jpg


IMG_20210722_135508~2.jpg


IMG_20210722_132422~2.jpg


IMG_20210722_132716~2.jpg


All loads are fold crimped and finished with a rounded edge for smoother feeding in any pump or semi-auto.

All 2 3/4" hunting loads, as tested through my 34" Hastings Wadlock barrel, average right at 1,700 fps..

I ship out 10,000 of these rounds a year, with most of them going out to guys that use them for elk, bear, moose, caribou and deer.

A Round Ball may not be the best looking round available for big game, and you surely cannot stretch it's accuracy potential out for hundreds of yards, but if you can put one of these spherical chunks of lead in the front shoulder of your intended quary, chances are, it is not going to be traveling very far at all.

I have seen huge bull moose shot at 20 to 30 yards with one of these Round Balls square in the shoulder, and they absolutely dropped like a rock, unable to get their front legs back under them again. A finishing shot in the neck usually means lights out!

I know that a 100 to 200 pound deer is no match for a chunk of lead like this, because I have killed many many deer with these loads, and the two guys that have used these loads in Africa, I would not hesitate to use them myself, if that once in a lifetime hunt ever presented itself.

Keep the range short and you can kill anything walking on 4 legs. And like any gun or load, you just have to put the shot where it will do the most good, and always be prepared for that follow up shot if needed.

Round Ball
 

Sarg

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Thank you for posting, great stuff those RB loads look the goods, very under rated the old round ball for sure.

I have a 12 Bore Double rifle 3in chambered near 15lb & shot .747 balls of over 600gr in it, which I think is the right pay load, use a roll crimp on mine, one good reason to do so is you can see the ball & I load the spruce front on .

Say what do you tumble your RB in to clean that spruce off so clean ?
 
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Round Ball

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You're welcome Sarg.

Round Balls are very underated indeed!

Sounds like you have a great rifle, and one I would be envious of.

Years ago, I use to roll crimp and loaded sprue side down. Now days, by completely eleminating the sprue, I can load the Round Balls in any position for superb accuracy and not have to worry about the position it sits.

I put a teaspoon of motor mica in the case polisher, and normally polish 200 Round Balls at a time for 30 hours. This completely removes the sprue and any and all possible defects.

Round Ball
 

Sarg

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Hey thank you for that info on the polisher / cleaning up the balls .

I cased mine & straight into water, I'm pretty sure she would kill any thing any where ?

Farm042.jpg
 

TOBY458

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I have been shooting deer for over 30 years using a .690 diameter Round Ball in various 12 ga. shotguns, and have thoroughly enjoyed every single hunt that I have been on.

Wild hogs! I have never shot one with a Round Ball that has ever had a good thing to say about it. BANG! SMACK! FLOP! Just like that.

I know of 2 Cape Buffalo, a Zebra, Wildebeest and a couple of Warthogs that have been shot with my Round Ball loads. Guns used were an H&H Paradox, and my Remington 870 with a 34" Hastings Wadlock barrel with an extended full choke tube.

Lead has been mixed with antimony and will produce a Round Ball with a BHN reading of 22.

View attachment 414345

Modified .690 mold and lead ladel for keeping the lead and antimony stirred and fluxed.
View attachment 414346

The mold has been "smoked" and the first Round Ball is just as perfect as the last.
View attachment 414347

One batch of Round Balls have been molded and are ready for the next step.
View attachment 414349

All Round Balls have sprues on them.
View attachment 414348

After a batch of Round Balls are made, they are put in a vibratory case polisher for 30 hours. This removes the sprue as well as any other imperfections that may have been caused by the molding process.
View attachment 414352

View attachment 414355

Once polished, these Round Balls will weigh within 2/10 th. of a grain from each other, and roundness is held within .0004 around the complete circumference, with measurements taken at 5 random points on each Round Ball tested.
View attachment 414358

A 1/4" wool felt is inserted into each wad, and a Round Ball is nestled on top of that.
View attachment 414370

View attachment 414371

View attachment 414372

View attachment 414373

All loads are fold crimped and finished with a rounded edge for smoother feeding in any pump or semi-auto.

All 2 3/4" hunting loads, as tested through my 34" Hastings Wadlock barrel, average right at 1,700 fps..

I ship out 10,000 of these rounds a year, with most of them going out to guys that use them for elk, bear, moose, caribou and deer.

A Round Ball may not be the best looking round available for big game, and you surely cannot stretch it's accuracy potential out for hundreds of yards, but if you can put one of these spherical chunks of lead in the front shoulder of your intended quary, chances are, it is not going to be traveling very far at all.

I have seen huge bull moose shot at 20 to 30 yards with one of these Round Balls square in the shoulder, and they absolutely dropped like a rock, unable to get their front legs back under them again. A finishing shot in the neck usually means lights out!

I know that a 100 to 200 pound deer is no match for a chunk of lead like this, because I have killed many many deer with these loads, and the two guys that have used these loads in Africa, I would not hesitate to use them myself, if that once in a lifetime hunt ever presented itself.

Keep the range short and you can kill anything walking on 4 legs. And like any gun or load, you just have to put the shot where it will do the most good, and always be prepared for that follow up shot if needed.

Round Ball
Just don't get those confused with a dove load and shoot at a low bird! Hahaha!
 

Round Ball

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Loaded rounds sell for $1.50 each.

I do not sell just the Round Balls, as there are enough guys out there who are already doing this. There quality control is quite lacking to say the least, and hardness is from one end of the spectrum to the other. Plus, most guys use wheel weights and I refuse to do that.

Unless I have a customer who no longer wants ammo from me, I do not exceed my 10,000 round count, as I take off work a full month to get everything cast, tested and loaded.

Round Ball
 

Sarg

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Wow that is some loading & work, wish you were here Id grab a heap myself !

I use Wheel Weights, could you say why you don't, I think you have forgotten more than I know on loading these lol ?

Couple more pics of my old girl, has Lions & Elephants engraved on her, was from India via Africa then England & then to me, seems to be on a 8 bore size action .
Farm021.jpg

Farm031.jpg
 

Skinnersblade

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You can count me amongst the believers of Roland balls, I shot my first deer with a .50 cal musket ball loaded in a 28 gauge high brass out of a double father gave me. i still carry a couple loaded ball any time I’m shotgunning one just never knows when he might want a thumper.
 

Round Ball

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That engraving is beautiful and the thickness of those chamber walls is quite impressive to say the least! Quite the travel history too.

Just me personally, when I spend the time and money to develope a load, regardless of what it is for, it has to be the best that it can be, or I won't fool with it. I have found wheel weights to be all over the place when it comes to getting a very good alloy. Weight changes, density changes and even the diameter of the Round Balls will change. I make my own mix of pure lead, babbitt and linotype. Why? Because it allows me to be able to produce one of the most accurate Round Balls and Round Ball loads there is.

I am a firm believer in that if you are going to do something, then do it to the absolute best of your ability. But that's just me.

And my $25 aluminum Lee mold. I machines it to where it has a very minimum sprue thickness. And since I am alloy specific, I had to find the correct size ball bearing, and shape my mold to it with the use of a borrowed 60 ton press. Now, my Round Balls are the exact diameter I want, and are perfectly round. I think the results were worth all the extra time involved in getting this mold to my exact specifications.

Accuracy with my Remington Wingmaster 30" full choke barrel is 2" @ 75 yards.

Accuracy with my 34" Hastings Wadlock barrel with an extended full choke is also 2" @ 75 yards.

I have tried modified and improved cylinder choke tubes, as well as fixed choke barrels, and most will do 8-10 inches at 50 yards.

Full choked barrels have always proven to be most accurate, regardless of whether or not it was a fixed choke barrels or screw in choke barrels.

Round Ball
 

flatwater bill

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RB...........I have been casting and hunting with roundballs for over 40 years, but never thought of the vibratory polisher...............I've got to try it. Learned something there, for sure. I also alloy my own lead, as wheel weights have no consistent formula and vary too much. My .69's weigh 478 grains +/-................FWB
 

ChrisG

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I never have tried a round ball. These are my 12 bore loads. Though I only have one coyote to claim with them so far. The bullet dwarfs a 9mm round.
20210722_204252.jpg
20190212_183031.jpg


They are 775 grain wadcutters cast from an accurate arms mold, loaded to about 1,150 fps... and a little overkill for a coyote.

I'm glad I am not the only one who enjoys loading and shooting some heavy, slow chunks of lead!
 

Round Ball

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FWB,

if the spru on your Round Ball mold is on the thick side, see if you can find someone with a milling machine, and get them to mill down the top of it for a very thin spru lip. I machined mine down a good .040 and the vibratory case polisher removes all traces of it.

I had to run back down to the shop for a little bit, and pulled my sheet on the last 10 Round Balls out of the mold and cleaner with the following measurements -

Diameters:

1- .69003
2- .69003
3- .69005
4- .69004
5- .69003
6- .69004
7- .69005
8- .69004
9- .69003
10- .69003

Weights:

1- 483.5 gr.
2- 483.7 gr.
3- 483.7 gr.
4- 483.7 gr.
5- 483.3 gr.
6- 483.4 gr.
7- 483.2 gr
8- 483.4 gr.
9- 483.5 gr
10- 483.6 gr.

I give credit more to the alloy for the uniformity, but I have never had either a rifle or pistol bullet mold that was as accurate as what this mold is.

Round Ball
 
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flatwater bill

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You are getting some seriously good consistency there on the weights. I am using a Rapine Mold and have a good alloy, but that danged sprue is a problem. I have been just touching it on a disc sander, and while it is not perfect, I am also not a professional as you are....My mold is undersized as I am shooting a muzzleloader, and need a thin patch. Of course, the sprue must be up when loading a muzzleloader......but it would be better not to have one. I won't buy swaged commercial balls, even though they are quite round, as they are pure lead.....I need a little hardening for penetration. Have taken over 40 head of big game with the oft maligned roundball.................thanks for helping..................FW Bill
 

Round Ball

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ChrisG,

with those brass cases, that makes for a very impressive looking round!

What type of accuracy and velocity do you get from those loads?

Round Ball
 

Round Ball

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F W Bill,

I have to work at it to get consistent weights and diameters, but still yet, nothing is ever perfect.

What type of accuracy are you getting with your patched loads?

Round Ball
 

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