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 Post subject: melting into ingots
PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2020 7:27 am 
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Right i have a large collection of old lead (mostly pipe some roof lead cut offs ) the pipe has numerous coats of paint on it all of its pretty dirty
Should i cast into ingots (thinking tobaco tin as a mould) before making slugs ? Should i add anything to it in the final melt or in the ingot making stage ?


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 Post subject: Re: melting into ingots
PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2020 8:33 am 
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Yes melt and thoroughly clean into ingots by stirring it well with a dry stick, removing the resultant dirt from the top.

Be sure that the metal is completely dry before melting so as to avoid the tinsel fairy.

Best to do outside as the cleaning process will give of copious amounts of smoke and fumes.

Do not use your casting pot for metal cleaning, keep it clean for casting.

I would not add anything to the ingots at the cleaning stage so that you have a base line metal for any future alloying.

Slop sided ingot moulds are best so as to ensure the alloy drops out, Yorkshire pudding trays are good.

For slug I would just add a smidgeon of tin at the casting stage

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 Post subject: Re: melting into ingots
PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2020 9:02 am 
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Like Dromia says, do this outside.

I use a cheap saucepan on a camping stove (like this https://www.gooutdoors.co.uk/15895048/c ... l-15895048).

When it's melted flux liberally with beeswax and scoop out all the dross that comes to the top. Then ladle it into whatever ingot mold you use: don't try picking up a full saucepan of molten lead! My mold is made up of 2" angle-iron, but the Lee one is also OK.

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 Post subject: Re: melting into ingots
PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2020 10:15 am 
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Muffin pans are great and throw an ingot around 1kg
I flux with Kitty litter and biodiesel that got spilled. Works really well Lol

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 Post subject: Re: melting into ingots
PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2020 10:20 am 
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I use small a small bun tray - each "ingot" weighs just about 1lb.

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 Post subject: Re: melting into ingots
PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2020 11:36 am 
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1066 wrote:
I use small a small bun tray - each "ingot" weighs just about 1lb.

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Or, you can use the frog in a clean house brick to make ingots. (hard flettons are best)

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 Post subject: Re: melting into ingots
PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2020 11:47 am 
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when people say flux are we talking as a release agent ?

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 Post subject: Re: melting into ingots
PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2020 11:49 am 
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Dellboy wrote:
when people say flux are we talking as a release agent ?

A flux mixed in the lead melt enables the alloy to mix well into solution and encourages the impurites to float to the top of the melt where it can be skimmed off.

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 Post subject: Re: melting into ingots
PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2020 12:40 pm 
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All you need to do to release the impurities is carbon which many refer to as fluxing but actually is cleaning. Fluxing has to do with removing dissolved metals that may impede the casting qualities of the alloy such as zinc, iron etc.

That may also be desirable depending on the purity of the original metal however carbon is all that you need for cast bullet alloy fluxing.

Hence the addition of all sorts of weird and wonderful potions for cleaning metal but it is the carbon that does the trick, its source is irrelevant but some like oil and greases are smelly and produce a really dirty smoke.

As I said all you need to do is stir it with a dry stick, the charring of the stick introduces the carbon along with the stirring brings the impurities to the surface for skimming off. Stirring through dry sawdust is another good way of cleaning as you want as much contact tween the alloy and the carbon.

There are also reductants which help with oxidised metals in the alloy, mainly tin.

It is a a complicated process once you start alloying, but here you are cleaning and all you need to do is stir and scrap the hell out of you mix with a dry bit of wood or stir and scrap the shite out of it with sawdust, pine is preferable.

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 Post subject: Re: melting into ingots
PostPosted: Tue May 26, 2020 9:13 am 
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Personally i'd try to make your ingots as small as possible. I have a load that have been made in muffin/Yorkie tins and they take forever to melt and introducing one into an already liquid pot of lead knocks the heat right out of it so you have to wait longer. Not an issue of course if time isn't a big factor.

The Lee mould has two sizes on ingot on it and the smaller one I find to be just about right, slightly smaller/the size of an adults middle finger would be better. The easiest stuff I've used has been roofing lead, cut into 100mm x 100mm sheets as you can just keep gradually topping up and effectively never have to stop.

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