Similar to a gunsmith who starts out doing general repairs then later aquires the tooling and knowledge to specialize in certain types of gun work, Mountain Molds started out without any particular specialty but has gradually focused on the online design program.
The online design program allows the customer to design a bullet that is very close to a custom design, yet the high degree computerization and standardization keep costs lower than a true custom mold. It is a reasonable compromise.
Mountain Molds is a one-man operation. I like it that way because it keeps things simple and economical. On the other hand, with a one man operation, there is no quick way to increase production, so there will be times when work becomes seriously backlogged, or else prices may increase until supply and demand equalize.
Some of my long term goals:
— Continually improve the quality and durability of the molds.
— Continually improve the website.
— Continually control costs by improving the speed and efficiency of manufacturing, without sacrificing quality.
— Shoot more, so I can learn more about cast bullets.
Some of the things that are not my goals:
— Become a “generic” mold maker. Then I would have to compete on price with Lee, Lyman, etc. Niche marketing is the way to go for the small businessman.
— Become a custom mold maker. CNC lathe-boring is not a efficient way to make one-of-a-kind designs. There are substantial set-up costs, and often the first attempt or two has to be scrapped.
About me …… I grew up in the flat, flat, delta region of Arkansas and Louisiana. Seeing even a small hill was a big event. The first real gun that I was allowed to shoot was a Mossberg US44 target 22. That heavy sucker seemed to cut a furrow in my shoulder as I carried it many a mile on squirrel and rabbit hunts. It must have made a lasting impression on me, because now I shun heavy guns and flat land. I used to shoot a lot but family responsibilities and city life put an end to that. Hopefully that will change in the not-too-distant future.