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Pouring Lead - Whats the trick?

post #1 of 35
Thread Starter 
Ok,
Just received my first two Do-It molds from Stamina. Fired up the Coleman camping stove and put the cast iron pot on it full of lead. About 45 minutes the lead was melted, but when I pour it into the mold the hole got clogged up with lead and I didn't get a full pour. I heated up the mold, and it seemed to get better. After about a dozen attempts, I got one complete jig. What am I doing wrong here? Seems like the lead wasn't hot enough, should I buy an electric pourer?
post #2 of 35
tattoo,

if your gonna get into making your own lures I would go the extra cost of purchasing a Lee Production Pot...

It will melt 10lbs. of lead to a working temp in about 10 mins.

I would have to guess that a Coleman stove just doesn't have the BTU's to keep the lead at a working temp of 700 degrees...

but also one of the tricks to successful jig pouring is having a VERY warm mold...

I usually pour about a dozen jigs without putting the hooks in the jig, just to warm the mold... you just throw the hookless jigs back in the pot...

then when I am seeing that the jigs are looking the way I like I start putting the hooks in them...

hope this makes sense and help ya some...
post #3 of 35
You don't say what kind of COleman stove you aare using > If it is the Propane type forget it.Go buy the Lee production pot. If it is the liquid fuel type it is plenty hot. I use mine to melt up to twenty pounds of lead at a time.
As Misfit said the molds need to be hot.I usually put my molds on the stove for a few minutes just to heat up. If you pour hot lead into a cold mold the lead starts to harded almost instantly causing the mold to fill improperly.Always heat your molds first.
Did you blacken your molds before using them?You should take a candle and hold the mold over it.Let the candle smoke blacken the mold cavitites before you pour your lead. You will find that this helps to fill the molds easier , and also allows for a better release from the mold.
If you still are having trouble you can enlarge the pouring hole a little. I usually do this because it allows me to fill the mold a little quicker, with less trouble.
Just a few things.
Always pour lead in a well ventilated area. Make sure you wear thick heavy gloves. I prefer welder type gloves.
Always wear long pants and heavy shoes. I had a mold leak on me once. Damn lead ran down my leg and onto my foot.
Always pour lead over a non burnable surface. can't be to careful.
keep the kids and pets away.You don't want to be distracted in the middle of a pour.And you definitely don't want the pot knocked over.
take your time.Practice makes prefect.
post #4 of 35
I use a coleman gasoline stove and it works just fine, at least until you run out of fuel.

Make sure you are in well ventilated place.
post #5 of 35
Ditto Misfit and WIWF's advice - make sure that you have your lead hot enough - pour several times without hooks to preheat the mold - sounds like it's not hot enough and so it's cooling too quickly, giving you lousy pours.
And REALLY follow all the safety precautions you read here - lead can have some nasty health consequences, especially for kids (and your two pups).
I always wear my Jack 'n' Jenny work gloves with the long forearm cuffs when I'm pouring just in case. Don't smoke or eat while you're pouring and wash your hands well when you're done.
You might also wanna give the hinge a blast of WD-40 too.
If you powder coat your jigs - the best finish, fer sure - and decide to bake them to harden the finish as recommended on the instructions, DON'T use the same oven your family uses for food.
Do-Its are great - it does take a little practice, but you'll find it's a piece of cake after a while.
Crafty
post #6 of 35
Thread Starter 
I was able to make some jigs yesterday with the suggestion you guys made. I heated up the mold on the coleman stove and heated up the ladle with lead in it with propane torch. Not that efficient, but it works for now.

Now if I can only figure out how to get rid of those cancerous paint blobs when using powder paint we'll be in business!

Mike
post #7 of 35
Hey, Mike -
Shoot me a PM or give me a call if ya need a hand. You're all of 15 minutes away.
Crafty
post #8 of 35
EVERY DO IT MOLD(AND THEY ARE FANTASTIC MOLDS) COMES WITH AN INSTRUCTION BOOKLET..YOU MAY WANT TO READ THAT ALSO,,VERYI NFORMATIVE..
BEST TIP I CAN GIVE YOU...
IF YOU WANT GOOD CASTING ON THE 1ST SHOT
VENT,VENT, VENT.
LEAD GOES IN, AIR HAS TO COME OUT SOMEWHERE, RIGHT?
SO TRY USING A SMALL PIECE OF THAT ALUMINUM TAPE THEY USE FOR DUCTS,,PIECE ABOUT 1/4" SQUARE ON TOP AND BOTTOM OF BACK OF MOLD, NEAR THE HANDLES..DO IT MOLDS ARE SO TIGHT,,THEY DONT VENT,,THIS WILL GIVE YOU CLEARANCE YOU NEED,,,DONT WORRY ABOUT FLASH..THE TAPE IS ONLY A COUPLE THOUSANTHS OF AN INCH THICK...TRY IT,,YOU WILL BE PLEASANTLY SURPRISED..
GOOD LUCK...
post #9 of 35
One other thing to remember is that if you have a fiber weed guard it will fray pretty bad if the mold gets to hot.I find pouring with the end plug that came with the mold (you know the little mushroom looking thing that fits in the weed guard slot) then i use epoxy glue to hold in the weed guard.Makes for a much cleaner jig and i also powder paint them before i add the weed guard. All my jigs look factory.
post #10 of 35
Mike
Preheating the molds will solve your pouring problem. Preheating the jigs will solve your other problem. Put them in the oven aroud 225 let them warm up then dip them in the powder. tap the shank of the hook to get the excess powder off of the head. The jig will still be dull powder color, then stick them back in the oven and turn the heat up and they'll turn glossy and harden.
post #11 of 35
What lead are you using, just started pouring last season..and have not done much since last winter, But hear there is soft and hard lead..guessing hard is from tire weights and has impurities..soft lead is reccomended by do-it-molds. I am gonna get some lead flashing from the local homies..something like 50lbs for 60$. if you try that let me know how that is...Plus what the other guys said.
post #12 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Salt and Fresh View Post
What lead are you using, just started pouring last season..and have not done much since last winter, But hear there is soft and hard lead..guessing hard is from tire weights and has impurities..soft lead is reccomended by do-it-molds. I am gonna get some lead flashing from the local homies..something like 50lbs for 60$. if you try that let me know how that is...Plus what the other guys said.


Instead of Homies, hit a local scrap yard and get the 50 lbs for about 25 bucks, or even less if you trade in any scrap metal that you have. Its all the same stuff, just in different form.
post #13 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Salt and Fresh View Post
...hear there is soft and hard lead..guessing hard is from tire weights and has impurities..soft lead is reccomended by do-it-molds...


Yep, hard lead has other stuff in it. The soft lead is pure. The flashing they use around chimneys and for some pipes is often soft lead. Like JTR suggested, you might find it at your local metal scrap yard. Either that or check the local plumbing supply place for ingots (often called lead chalking). Thats the good stuff.

Talk about pulling a thread up from the archives

Jigman
post #14 of 35
I use a old double burner gas stove...First thing I did when I purchased a home was to run a gas line near a basement back door for ventilation purposes.Then hooked up the stove on a table with shelves for molds etc.. I've been making sinkers & metal lures for about 48 yrs now..I've found that building a cradle to hold your ladle so the base is just above the tip of the flame is the hotest area...That & letting the lead get real hot before you pour... Doing a few blank pours will heat up the mold also..We on the west coast make lots of Kroks , Miki's , Kast masters etc in 600 degree heat proof silicone rubber molds.. We use auto wheel weight lead which has Antimony in it ,, which acts as a hardener....Check your local gas station you deal with.. Heats & pours as easy as regular lead...A little harder to pull pins as with sliding sinkers & such molds.. Same as lead with tin ( 60-40%) lead to tin ratio.. Don't try to add Antimony to lead...Really hard to do , as you really need high heat to mix...Wheel weight lead works great for lures because of the hardner, which does'nt allow the doulocks or split rings to pull out as soft lead does... Paint them with lure paint & glitter , eyes , Top coat with epoxy ..You can get them chromed if you can find a shop that will do it..Wear a mask & cross ventilate the area you're working in..Hope this helps ...Jim
post #15 of 35
Me & my dad have been doing this for as long as I can remember:

I have a big spoon to put the lead into and we heat it up with a propane torch. Takes about 10-15 minutes to heat up the first batch. Now while one person heats the spoon full of lead the other person takes another propane torch and heats up the lead mold so the lead doesn't clump up. The first 1-2 batches are the hardest and will sometimes get clogged. But after that everything is nice and hot and will work real easy and well.
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