|Originally posted by PASurfer:
Wait for Jigman to respond... he's our token leadhead.
Actually, there are a number of us leadheads here
Here is a quick run down of some commen ones that I have exerience with. All are good for the small time guy. The best one? Depends on how many jigs, what size, and how often you will use it.
Palmer Hot Pot II. The cheapest of the bunch. Handles 4# of lead. Sides have a pour spout. A couple of molds and this pot are a good starter. The only other thing you would need would be an old spoon to scoop out the lead scum that forms on top.
Lee Precission Melter. Handles 4# lead. Variable thermostat, so you can adjust the temps. You'll need a ladel to go with it.
Lee Production Pot IV. Handles 10# of lead (they also make a 20# version for more $). Both are bottom pour melters. Useful on smaller size pourings. You hold the mold under the pot, hit the leveler, lead fills the mold, pull mold away. If you are doing larger (i.e., 2 oz and up) jigs, you'll need a ladel instead.
Lee Magnum Melter. Handles 20# of lead. You use a ladel to pour the lead into the mold. Useful if you are doing a lot of larger jigs.
All but the Hot Pot have variable temp. Turn the knob to increase the heat. Start at high to melt the lead, then decrease the temp (lead needs 621 degrees F to melt). Higher temps mean more fumes. One thing to consider on the bottom pour molds, the spout will clog from time to time, so there is some maintenance there.
Note of warning. Only melt lead in a well ventalated area, wear a respirator specifically for lead, wear safety glasses (lead will splatter from time to time), and gloves. Don't eat or drink while pouring and wash well after pouring.
Other questions? Fire away. We need more leadheads here