Alox bullet lube – why I can’t supply it

Posted by on November 1, 2011

I have had a few requests for bullet lube on this blog and by e mail.  I can’t supply it.  Let me explain why.

In the early days of my commercial bullet casting, hollow lube sticks at retail price were much too expensive, so I imported a 16kg drum of Alox 2138F and mixed it with local commercial beeswax.   It was identical to the commercial product sold be Lee and others at one tenth the cost.  I am not aware of any bullet lube better than 50/50 Alox/ beeswax, even today.  I stopped using it in favour of modern hard wax only because it is too messy for packaging for sale. 

But I had a lot of it left, so I offered it for sale, either in its pure state or mixed with beeswax in big blocks or hollow sticks, for which I made a simple mould.   I didn’t advertise it in Magnum because the cost of such adverts is disproportionately high for the likely sales volume.   I offered it through SATalkGuns, my local club, and what other channels I could think of that wouldn’t cost much.   Two guys bought 1 kg each of bulk lube.   One of my own club members bought a few sticks.   Not one dealer in the greater Cape Town area would buy it.   So I couldn’t sell the 100% genuine product at half the price of normal retail.   I concluded that only branded goods will sell, and the price doesn’t matter.   When I moved to smaller premises recently, I gave it to a friend who likes to experiment.   There was about 10kg, which would make 500 hollow sticks.

Just for interest, I ran two tests to see how far a kg would go.  It averaged 40 000.   90% of my production was single groove 9mm and 38Spl, the remaining 10% being mostly 40S&W and 45ACP.    At the time (a long time ago) the alox cost R320 for 16kg, and local beeswax R25 per kg.    It worked out at 56 cents per 1000 bullets, or 90 cents per hollow stick.   At the time, hollow stick retailed at R11.

Alox 2138F is no longer available as a standard product.  It can be duplicated, but I will explain that in a separate post.


Respond | Trackback