Cheapest way to melt lead

HotSoup

Twelve Pointer
I used to melt with a lodge cast iron pot....one of those "used" specials off Amazon and a turkey fryer base. Worked great, was then gifted a small temp controlled forge and have been using that ever since.
 

.35Rem

Six Pointer
It can be either. The lead will melt at a low temp 620 I believe. To melt wheel wts I use a old kitchen pan and a propane burner to make ingots. I call it the smelting stage because I’m getting all the real junk out of the stuff in the pot, left with lead or alloy. The ingots I put in the electric melter when I cast bullets are clean and don’t gunk up that pot.
 

Buxndiverdux

Old Mossy Horns
I've always wondered if the fumes from melting lead were harmful? We know ingesting lead is bad. We know that breathing indoor air filled with lead particles from gunfire has to be filtered by very expensive equipment to be considered safe. Even handling lead is hazardous without hand washing.

Anyone know?
 

Dick

Eight Pointer
I've always wondered if the fumes from melting lead were harmful? We know ingesting lead is bad. We know that breathing indoor air filled with lead particles from gunfire has to be filtered by very expensive equipment to be considered safe. Even handling lead is hazardous without hand washing.

Anyone know?
hell yes!
be careful melting lead. outside, where gloves.
we always used cast iron to melt the lead and skim off any garbage. used an iron ladle to transfer into molds. sinker molds or ingot molds. had production pots that you could just drop a ingot into and it would melt the ingot and had a lever to fill molds.
 

Mr.Gadget

Old Mossy Horns
does it have to be cast iron or can it be metal?
Mack
I say yes. The reason is when you start the melt process the pan has nothing against it and a stainless steel pan or aluminum can either warp really bad or crack and that's the last thing you want to happen is have the lead dump out on the ground on your burner.

The lead also will not stick to the cast-iron like it can some other Alloys & Metals.
Many people have used old stainless steel Heavy Duty Pots to melt it and it does work I just don't trust it like I trust cast iron.
 

Mr.Gadget

Old Mossy Horns
yes, they carry lead particles,,, lead ain't good for you,,,

make sure to do it OUTSIDE and stay UPWIND,,,
That is what I like about using the cast iron pot I do I can fill it up turn it on walk away and come back. I'm never around the fumes on the initial melt.
I can see what it's doing from a distance and even use lead thermometer to tell when it's right and I need to go back to the pot.
 

Dick

Eight Pointer
cast iron. yes, others will work but usually what happens is the burner is too much for the pan and accidents happen.

keep liquids away from lead. they explode too. Make sure to keep the beer to sinker ratio in check.🤣
 

Dick

Eight Pointer
I'd be all into a big poor sometime. We used to get a mess of people together and cast a chit ton of weights and jigs.

good food and beverage of choice. everyone brings the molds they have, pots, ect.
 

darenative

Twelve Pointer
If you are melting it in bulk, id stick with cast iron for the safety factor.
I typically dont do large melts in big pots, i'll use an air chisel to cut pieces into small enough chunks to go into a lee production pot and cast ingots.
 

woodmoose

Administrator
Staff member
Contributor
heck, I still have a few chunks of lead here that I have had since the late 80s,,,, they are each about 25 lbs,,, old ballast from torpedoes that we salvaged to make dive weights,,, had mucho lbs (tons???) of it at one time,,,,, down to a couple of hundred lbs,,,

maybe all that lead is what is wrong with me :unsure:
 

.35Rem

Six Pointer
I've always wondered if the fumes from melting lead were harmful? We know ingesting lead is bad. We know that breathing indoor air filled with lead particles from gunfire has to be filtered by very expensive equipment to be considered safe. Even handling lead is hazardous without hand washing.

Anyone know?
I put an exhaust fan over my casting bench to draw off the fumes.
 

Mack in N.C.

Old Mossy Horns
Mack
I say yes. The reason is when you start the melt process the pan has nothing against it and a stainless steel pan or aluminum can either warp really bad or crack and that's the last thing you want to happen is have the lead dump out on the ground on your burner.

The lead also will not stick to the cast-iron like it can some other Alloys & Metals.
Many people have used old stainless steel Heavy Duty Pots to melt it and it does work I just don't trust it like I trust cast iron.
thanks, also I have read on it some and plan to have leather gloves and do it outside. I have a sinker mold that a friend gave me a few years back, it has 1,2,3 and 4 oz places in it and they look like they would almost be flat weights.
 

Mr.Gadget

Old Mossy Horns
Let me add, also good to cover you arms and legs. It stops anything in the air from getting in you skin.

Eye protection in the #1 thing. I also keep a big bowl to cover the pot incase a pop up rain.
 
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