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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Looks like I'm going to take the plunge and get into casting. I found a RCBS pro melt 2 in stock and my wife said to get it.

Any suggestions of basic items I need on the cheap to get started? I've got nothing except I do have plenty of saw dust. Going to focus on just smelting at first and making ingets from WW. Anyone know where I can get WW from a shop for free. Given I'm starting out, I'm willing to sort through new stuff with only 40% lead and cull out the Zn & Fe.
 

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Cast iron or aluminum pot. Big spoon. Camp stove. Muffin pan
Keep the rough materials out of your casting pot and use the above.

If you can’t find anything of any great amount,holler and I’ll get you some rounded up.
 

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Will that "camp stove" support 200lbs....?

Cheap metal tongs for grabbing the metal clips.

A good pair of leather gloves.

A box fan to help blow the smoke away from you.

A metal laddle to pour ingots.

DO NOT smelt anything in your casting pot. Only clean lead goes in there.

.
 

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Soonered I'm in the same position. I've got a dipper, 9mm mold, and 82 pounds wheel weight ingots and a old fish fryer. If I look hard enough I may have one of the old screw on the bottle single burner. I have got to round up a pot and more lead.
I want to get a 38 cal mold, .690 & .600 round ball molds and a melting pot. Been thinking about breaking down and for the fun of it use a couple ingot and practice with the 9mm mold.
 

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Watch the yard sales, that's where I got everything I used to melt rough lead. I use sawdust to flux in that pot and any kind of wax in the production pot. I use a slotted spoon to dip out big trash, scrape the sides and bottom as good as you can before and while fluxing.
I've got lead pipe and a mix of lead/tin .177 rifle pellets at a good price.
 

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2nd the yard sales, although I just scored 4 cast iron corn bread pans for 13-20 bux apiece on Ebay.
 
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Discussion Starter #10
Would a 16 qt aluminum stock pot work for smelting? Sam's has them for $30 and comes with a lid.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Will that "camp stove" support 200lbs....?

Cheap metal tongs for grabbing the metal clips.

A good pair of leather gloves.

A box fan to help blow the smoke away from you.

A metal laddle to pour ingots.

DO NOT smelt anything in your casting pot. Only clean lead goes in there.

.
SGF,

That is exactly what I was needing was some sort list to work from.
 

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Go ahead and be locating molds and sizers...they are not staying in stock if a common size.

Save some small cardboard boxes for the dross.

Good strong fan and table (outside) or strong vent fan inside
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I'm wanting a 45 ACP mold first. Looking at a Lyman 452460. Would like to have a 155 SWC, or something similar as I shoot that the most in my 1911's. Yes, 155 SWC with VV 340 at 1,200+ FPS...Sum Guy load. Having trouble finding something close to a 155 SWC. They have them at Magma but I'm looking for something in the $100 range, or less, plus handles.
 

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I'm wanting a 45 ACP mold first. Looking at a Lyman 452460. Would like to have a 155 SWC, or something similar as I shoot that the most in my 1911's. Yes, 155 SWC with VV 340 at 1,200+ FPS...Sum Guy load. Having trouble finding something close to a 155 SWC. They have them at Magma but I'm looking for something in the $100 range, or less, plus handles.
Can’t beat Lee molds. Lighter,come up to temp faster,and will cool off faster if you find yourself hotter than you need to be. I have some of most all brands......I like MP molds (brass) the best but I like lee the most because of the value they offer.
I also have had the most problems with steel/iron molds. Bullets stick/slow to get up to temp/they rust. Problems you don’t have with brass or aluminum......once you work them.
Yeah......the old way was to “smoke” your mold and repeat that process to keep your bullets dropping free with thesteel molds. It’s a very unnecessary thing with the aluminum and brass. First two/three times you cast,run it hot (750-850*) till you produce frosted bullets constantly. Once you’ve done that.....set it aside for a day. The heat and work will have the surface of the cavities produce a thin “corrosion”,that will allow you bullets to fall free. It will allow the venting in the mold block faces to do their job of getting rid of the air in the cavity(s) and not stop up with smoke from your lighter or wood match.
I have around 30 or so lee molds.......2 and 6 cavity varieties and only some of the ones I bought used have smoke put to them. None.....absolutely zero of the brass or MP/NOE molds have ever had any on them. All work great.
On the steel slug mold and their pins......I’ve went as far as blowing aerosol graphite on them to get the pin in and out freely. That works pretty well.
On my Lee buckshot molds......they do the same as my other Lee molds,everything falls out.



I guess the point is.......I like Lee molds 😂
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Can’t beat Lee molds. Lighter,come up to temp faster,and will cool off faster if you find yourself hotter than you need to be. I have some of most all brands......I like MP molds (brass) the best but I like lee the most because of the value they offer.
I also have had the most problems with steel/iron molds. Bullets stick/slow to get up to temp/they rust. Problems you don’t have with brass or aluminum......once you work them.
Yeah......the old way was to “smoke” your mold and repeat that process to keep your bullets dropping free with thesteel molds. It’s a very unnecessary thing with the aluminum and brass. First two/three times you cast,run it hot (750-850*) till you produce frosted bullets constantly. Once you’ve done that.....set it aside for a day. The heat and work will have the surface of the cavities produce a thin “corrosion”,that will allow you bullets to fall free. It will allow the venting in the mold block faces to do their job of getting rid of the air in the cavity(s) and not stop up with smoke from your lighter or wood match.
I have around 30 or so lee molds.......2 and 6 cavity varieties and only some of the ones I bought used have smoke put to them. None.....absolutely zero of the brass or MP/NOE molds have ever had any on them. All work great.
On the steel slug mold and their pins......I’ve went as far as blowing aerosol graphite on them to get the pin in and out freely. That works pretty well.
On my Lee buckshot molds......they do the same as my other Lee molds,everything falls out.



I guess the point is.......I like Lee molds 😂
Thanks Ellis, very useful advise.
 

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In the FWIW vain. These pics show my setup to make ingots. Basic as I don't cast for a lot of guns. 45-70, 8mm-06 and round ball for black powder guns of various calibers. In this picture is the dutch oven pot, ladle, and skimmer in the pot. The ladle and skimmer were bought at Freds as a CHEAP set ($2.95 or so) and the wood handles added. The throw away aluminum roaster pan under the two burner camp stove is for the wheel weight clips and zinc weights. Lead melts at 621 degrees and zinc at 800 plus so zinc weights will float before they melt making it easier to "seperate" them from the lead ones. You just have to stay awake and watch for the weights that didn't seem to melt when the steel clips start floating.The ingot" mold in this case is a muffin tin bought at the Klose kloset in Wiggins for 50cents. The size of these ingots make it easy to fit into a Lee 20 pound melter pot to cast boolets of round ball. You can get deeply involved and make a nuc type melting pot like SubGunFan and Ellis93 but you'd be best served to sneak up that kind of commitment until you are satisfied that casting is for you and you do umteen hundred pounds of smelting at a time. These pictures were taken in Nov 2011 at the Mag in Byrum.
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Again FWIW. These are some of the ingot molds made from angle iron. Most are about one pound ingots. The big one is about a ten pound ingot. I don't recommend it for general use.
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Discussion Starter #19
Thanks...pics are very useful. You gave me some ideas. I really like the angle iron ingot mold as that would allow them to nest/stack neatly. Unfortunately I don't weld...so guess I'm out of getting one of those. Maybe someday Philipd will do a limited run to sell to casters. Probably not worth his time to fool with though.
 

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Thanks...pics are very useful. You gave me some ideas. I really like the angle iron ingot mold as that would allow them to nest/stack neatly. Unfortunately I don't weld...so guess I'm out of getting one of those. Maybe someday Philipd will do a limited run to sell to casters. Probably not worth his time to fool with though.
Hey @phillipd theres market! That’s something that should be easy too! 😆
 
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