Two Letters Re: Melting Lead for the Meltdown


Anyone casting lead must understand that Molten Lead and Water or Perspiration don’t mix!
Just One Drop of Water in the Lead Pot and…BOOM, an instant steam explosion.
Casting lead is hot business.
Standing over the pot you feel one drop of perspiration run down your brow, down the bridge of your nose right to the tip and in the pot.
By the time you realize what just happened, well… it’s too late.
That one little drop of sweat will most likely cause a violent explosion of molten lead all over you and every thing in the area.
Causing severe burns, maybe blindness and possibly a fire. That sweating glass of iced tea, or even a runny nose can put you in a bad situation. Wheel weights can hold a drop of water just under the clamp. Don’t drop them in the pot to save time.
A couple other good safety items would be sweatbands for the forehead and wrists and a full facemask instead of just safety glasses.
I personally believe melting lead in the kitchen on the stove is particularly hazardous. There are water sources everywhere…not to mention lead contamination in the kitchen.
You don’t use the turkey fryer in the kitchen, so why cook lead in the kitchen? 

Oh, by the way, I found a great on-line site for casting lead. About anything regarding casting lead is there.
Be Safe, – Bill in The Northern Neck of Virginia

Dear JWR,
I wanted to comment on the excellent article, Melting Lead for the Meltdown, by Charles J.

I would like to add just a few small things that I have picked up in 25 years of casting. The safety gear comments are spot on. Leather boots are very important, just make sure that your pant legs are on the outside of the boots. Take it from someone that learned the hard way, it is difficult to get a chunk of hot lead out of a boot while dancing around like a fool. Likewise, a face shield, or at the minimum, safety glasses, must be worn at all times when around molten lead. When my lead pot is on, a sign is on the door to the casting room reads that NO ONE is allowed entrance without at least safety glasses. The last safety item is that no liquids are allowed in the casting room when the pot is on. No soda, no coffee, no beer (which you shouldn’t be drinking anyway when dealing with molten metal). A small amount of liquid will cause a large splash of hot lead.One last hint would be that if you are casting more than one variety of bullet, do them both at the same time. Fill one mold, then set aside. Fill the second, set aside, open the first, re-fill and set aside. Repeat. When you get into a good rhythm, you can really crank out the cast bullets. Bullet casting can be very relaxing. Just be careful doing it. – Mr. M