How to Make Bullets

By Bob Jones May28,2023 #Jackery 1000

how to make bullets

Making bullets can be both affordable and straightforward, providing an opportunity to experiment with different calibers, shapes, and weights without incurring costly custom mold costs.

Beginners might like to begin with the classic paper bullet. Simply take a small piece of paper and fold or tear it into a squat tube shape before folding or tearing again to complete your masterpiece!


No matter if you prefer shooting rifles, shotguns, handguns or grenade launchers, there will always be advantages in creating your own bullets for shooting your firearms yourself – from cost considerations to tailoring projectiles specifically to each firearm type you own.

Making bullets yourself also allows you the flexibility to experiment with shapes, sizes and weights not available from store-bought ammunition. This is particularly true of swaged bullets with bonded core designs – one single die can produce virtually endless bullets of different jacket thicknesses and styles as long as their diameter remains the same.

Your bullets require the appropriate alloy, usually copper or brass such as oxygen-free copper and tellurium copper (UNS C36000 free-cutting brass), or precision metal such as cupronickel or tellurium bronze. Furthermore, special lube may be needed to help your projectile slide out easily from its mold.

Swaging dies are essential when creating bullets from lead alloy. There are various models on the market, but for optimal results it is advisable to purchase one with a diamond-lapped surface to ensure uniform bullet size and shape. Furthermore, your die should be set at the appropriate temperature – too hot could cause wrinkled projectiles while too cold will not allow them to fill out grooves effectively in your projectiles.

As well as the swage die, you will also require a sprue plate and some handles. The sprue plate should contain the negative cavity of your desired bullet type machined onto it and attached with hinges to a handle attached by hinges; handles can either be used to pull them out of a six-cavity mold or tap them against smaller molds with multiple cavities to cut away sprues that might obstruct bullet bases.

Swaging is the process of choice among major ammunition manufacturers, benchrest bullet makers and most serious hunters, as it does not involve heating molten lead and its attendant risks of burns and fire, and avoids distortion caused by heat-induced changes to bullet dimensions or misalignment that results from splitting molds.


Reloading ammunition yourself requires several tools in order to complete each stage of the process successfully. These include a reloading press, powder measure, reloading manual, bullet making tools and bullet making accessories such as bullet molds. In addition, scales, powder tricklers and case trimmers (or press holders that will work with it) may be needed as well as calipers which measure exact dimensions like length and headspace on loaded cartridges.

Reloading presses use high pressure to force bullet materials through a die and punches at high velocity, forming the final dimensions for shape, caliber and internal construction of each bullet – known as “swaging.” A single set of swage dies can produce virtually unlimited weights and styles; casting requires new molds for every new shape/caliber combination – saving time and money with this approach.

Some reloaders enjoy the challenge and cost savings of handcrafting their own bullets, using brass casings rather than purchasing preformed lead bullets from stores. Reloaders looking for deals may opt for packages containing all the tools necessary to start, which could prove more economical than purchasing items individually.

Bullets can be formatted either as a bulleted list or numbered list to effectively organize lengthy documents and highlight particular sections. Bulleted and numbered lists can also be highly effective search engine optimization strategies because they often include keywords in both their title and description tags. You can define bullets and numbers by specifying their character style in either the Bullets And Numbering dialog box or Paragraph Styles dialog box (if they form part of a paragraph style). With the Indent Options dialog box, you can customize spacing between lines and amount of indentation. Nested lists with lines indented at different rates can also be created; this feature makes it easy to highlight related or important topics within a document.


Bullets are kinetic projectiles used in firearms that propel slug-like pieces of metal through targets or animals with sudden, abrupt transfers of energy. They may be sold individually as muzzle-loading slugs or more commonly in cartridge (“round”) form in shell holders and casings as rounds (rounds of ammunition), which contain not only the bullet but also gunpowder, primer, and propellant in one package.

Bullet making requires both specialized and generalized hand tools, including vise grips, hacksaw, screwdrivers and hammers. To begin production, gunpowder must first be mixed properly. After adding enough of it to a brass case of the desired weight (using appropriate measurements and weight specifications) primer can then be applied if required. Before beginning this process it is vitally important that both length and headspace specifications of the case meet specifications before use.

Corbin offers home bullet makers an economical solution for creating any type of lead or ductile core jacketed bullet. A basic set of swage dies enables home bullet makers to form bullets using internal pressure; expanding, forming and seating the slug in the die results in perfectly formed bullets with precise diameter and weight specifications. Swagging eliminates casting which is slow, toxic and susceptible to errors due to trapped air pockets, heat-induced thermal shift, mold halves splitting apart due to shrinkage as well as wear on precision machined dies over time.

Swaging allows for an impressive variety of bullet shapes, from smooth ogives for big game hunting to long-range projectiles with low drag designed to penetrate deep. At its core is the monolithic lead slug; though tin and antimony alloys may help reduce lead deposits in rifled bores at higher velocities, their effectiveness lessens with increasing velocity. One method to avoid this situation is coating it with a “jacket” made from relatively thin copper or brass alloy that can easily be made by using Corbin jacket-making tools.


Making your own ammunition can be an engaging hobby for firearm enthusiasts and novices alike, offering relatively straightforward and economical processes compared to buying factory ammo. Before starting this endeavor, however, be sure to become acquainted with local laws regarding ammo production as well as understand any associated risks – like handling powder and making sure that you work in an area with adequate ventilation to reduce exposure to lead fumes.

Homemade bullets require the creation of a core material (lead, copper-lead alloy or powdered metal mixture) wrapped by an exterior jacket made of thin brass or copper tubing or flat copper strip, usually produced using Corbin jacket-making tools. Once these components are assembled together and compressed into place for firing from a gun, their cores can then be filled with solid lead, solid copper or powdered metal in order to be fired out and fired through its gunpowder-powered firearm, sending energy through its explosive power into its projectile which will cause it pierce or detonation upon striking its target surface when hit upon impact with its target surface.

Casting and swaging are the two primary methods for producing bullets. Casting can be costly and time consuming; additionally, special molds must be created for every shape and caliber, restricting experimentation. On the other hand, swaging offers quick and inexpensive bullet production solutions; it enables experimentation with numerous shapes using just one set of dies; this method produces bullets of any weight within any particular diameter with ease – it is truly the equivalent of thousands of moulds!

To swage bullets, you will require a high-pressure press capable of flowing the material without melting it, as well as a die fitted with two punches on either end; one end should thread into your press ram while the other has its own matching punch. In addition, you will require a mold that matches your desired caliber size, plus various punches for various styles – flat or rebated boattail bases, open or lead tips etc.

Once you have constructed your bullet, the next step should be seating it into its casing. This is usually a straightforward process using appropriate equipment; progressive reloading presses or single-stage presses equipped with bullet seating dies will do the job just fine. A case lube may also help ensure proper bullet seating within its neck of casing – further securing its place inside the case neck. Finally, consider purchasing a crimping die to secure its position even more tightly inside its case neck.

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