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Casting balls

Discussion in 'Bullet Casting' started by billy, Apr 18, 2017.

  1. Finally have a mold on the way to begin casting for the first time.
    I have a propane burner
    Steel pot
    Steel ladle
    And a bunch of ww and range scrap I can't use for the black powder balls I will be making
    Gonna get some pure lead locally
    neophyte likes this.
  2. runfiverun

    runfiverun G&G Evangelist

    heat, heat, heat.
    mold temperature is your friend.

    don't forget to clean the mold.
    at the minimum I use a spray degreaser, followed up by carb cleaner, on a heated up mold.

    after you get a bit more comfortable with things, you might just want to try some of that range scrap or ww alloy in the pistol.
    I know it sounds wrong but the micrometers don't lie about what works and what don't.
    neophyte and billy like this.

  3. Got 20lbs of sewer pipe lead
    A brand new mold
    Steel pan,ladle,slotted spoon
    A muffin pan
    And a gas burner
    Face shield
    Welding gloves
    Car hart heavy jeans and shirt
    Steel toe boots
    neophyte likes this.
  4. Billy,
    I have been casting pure lead for muzzleloading applications and wheel weights for higher pressure applications. If your mold you are using is aluminum it will need to be "smoked" by that I mean clean the heck out of it with hot water and dawn detergent to remove any remnants of manufacture... take a butane lighter and heat the mold cavity it will become sooted or smoked leave the soot.
    I think you might want to buy a 1/2 face respirator with hepa filters. Lead can be absorbed into the body by breathing the metal fumes or by ingesting it into the digestive system. Quickest and easiest is by breathing the fumes or dust. I always use a respirator.
    Another precaution is make sure where ever you are casting there is no chance of water getting into your molten lead, ie, if you cast out doors and it looks like its gonna rain. STOP what you are doing.. just a small amount of water in a pot of lead can cause the lead to violently shed the water as it becomes steam... very dangerous. And last but not least, I too use a face shield but be certain to wear glasses, prescription type are ok, but have some sort of eye protection, too.
    Lead is no joke, I like it as a projectile material, it is fun to cast into bullets.. I also do lead abatement at work. In fact for the last two day we have been doing an abatement job removing old paint and rust to prep for a new paint job on the railing system...get a respirator, wear latex gloves while handling the lead.. wash hands after casting or handling lead and no smoking or eating.
    When done casting wash the clothes your wore for the next time..we wear Tyvek suits at work.
    neophyte, ChaZam and billy like this.
  5. Burner didnt get hot enough
  6. FYI, lead melts at 621 degrees Farenheit, perhaps move it further away from the blue flame... also make sure there are no zinc ww's zinc ruins lead.
  7. runfiverun

    runfiverun G&G Evangelist

    actually it's 630-f.
    your burner should get hot enough.
    gas should do it, but might need some help holding the heat in to get you going from scratch.
    I use a propane burner similar to a fish/turkey fryer to melt 80 lbs at a time, it just takes a good 1/2 hr to get everything going then about 15 minutes a pot full after that.
    it has no problem holding the melt after everything is up and going.

    my electric pots take about 20-25 minutes to get everything up to temp and evened out.
  8. Lead/Melting point
    621.5°F; please, remember I am licensed to do lead abatement and kind of know my business.. no flame is intended..
  9. Billy, if your flame isn't melting it move the pot further from the blue flame in small increments... here is what hydrocarbons burn at in air...

    Flame temperatures of common gases and fuels
    Gas / Fuels Flame temperature
    Propane in air 1980 °C 3596 °F
    Butane in air 1970 °C 3578 °F
    Wood in air (normally not reached in a wood stove) 1980 °C 3596 °F
    Acetylene in air 2550 °C 4622 °F
  10. Sewer pipe lead
    My regular glasses are safety glasses bifocals.
    And the burner I tried using simply doesn't have enough Btus for the job
  11. M14man

    M14man I don't take prisoners... Forum Contributor

    Use pure lead! I made some .454 balls out of mix. It is so hard it won't push into the cylinders. Usually with soft lead you cut a ring. Even banging on the loading lever wrapped in cloth doesn't help. Almost afraid to break something. So I learned my lesson. Use pure lead only. If...If you want to test, load up and cast 20 only, not 100 or so which later ended up being re-melted for use else where.
    870shooter1 likes this.
  12. I found a 50,000btu one at the hardware store
    neophyte and 870shooter1 like this.
  13. I can dent this with a thumbnail
    neophyte and 870shooter1 like this.
  14. You need a iron pot, I use a 6 in. iron skillet.......I have actually done it on a electric stove, & yes a iron skillet on an electric stove will melt lead !.............
    neophyte and 870shooter1 like this.
  15. I just asked my bride if i can get a lee 4 20 lead furnace
    She said I might as well
  16. runfiverun

    runfiverun G&G Evangelist

    there ya go.
    your gonna want to still clean the gunk out of the scrap then use the cleaned lead in your little LEE pot.

    BTW this is a slippery long slope your going down.
    I know you shoot lead in some of your other pistols.
    it won't be long now.
    you'll be using big words like carborization and oxide reduction.
    and dammitthatshot.
    neophyte, 870shooter1 and swedesrus like this.
  17. The first I ever made.
    It's kinda fun 20170421_170614.jpg
    neophyte, swedesrus and 870shooter1 like this.
  18. runfiverun

    runfiverun G&G Evangelist

    good start.
    throw them in your brass tumbler with no media and they will bounce everything smoother.

    those buck shot pellets I sent you were in the tumbler for about 1.5 hrs with some steel BB's and a poof of graphite.
    neophyte likes this.
  19. I made some ingots with a muffin pan
    neophyte likes this.
  20. A cruddy,dismal,shoddy and icky store bought ball.
    And my GLEAMING,GLORIOUS,GEM LIKE,INCREDIBLE ball I just made FB_IMG_1492821999521.jpg
    BigCaneSwift and neophyte like this.