Hensley & Gibbs #99, One Skinny, One Fat
© 2014 – Thomas C. Dugas
I purchased my first Hensley & Gibbs #99 .30 caliber rifle mould around 1997 or so. In the photos, it's labeled as the "Skinny" one since the noses tend to come out around .297" to .298". The mould has worked well enough for my needs over the years and I have had good results using it in my Krag Sporter carbine, Remington 03A3 and even shot un-sized (tumble lubed shot as cast) in my Savage No. 4.
Hensley & Gibbs #99 Bullet (left) and #502 side by side for comparison…
Awhile back I picked up the second #99 mould and had it stored away for future use once I landed in a place where I could setup the casting pot again. Well, over the course of two weeks I managed to get my casting setup restored and had a chance to play with the new #99 mould. I was surprised to discover the noses measuring .304" when casting with the exact same alloy as I used with the "Skinny" #99. I cast using both side by side and stacked the bullets left and right.
As few Hensley & Gibbs rifle moulds are marked with caliber or as cast size, I realized that once again, George and James probably cut the cherries to order based on customer need. I would suspect that unless you cast and measure and verify as cast dimensions on Hensley & Gibbs rifle moulds, as cast size will vary from rifle mould to rifle mould.
I cast over 200 from each mould after culls, of which there were very few. Both moulds cast beautifully and a light tap on the hinge drops the bullets onto a cloth.
I've already loaded several hundred rounds of each (the fat and the skinny) for my 30-40 Krag sporter and plan on testing at 100 and 200 yards Sunday. I will report back to this thread and share the results.
The load is:
30-40 Krag Boxer Brass
Winchester Large Rifle
17.1 Grains 2400
Hornady Gas Check
Sized in my SAECO Sizer with a .311" die
OAL = 3.036"
The loaded Round:
The "Skinny" #99 Bullet:
The "Fat" #99 Bullet:
The Skinny bullet in my Krag Sporter:
The Fat bullet in my Krag Sporter:
And last by not least, the two Hensley & Gibbs #99 moulds side by side:
If anyone else has a Hensley & Gibb's #99 rifle mould I would love to hear about your results.