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When a lead pour is incomplete


dv616

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You can take pliers and dip the jig in the pot to melt off the lead but you will have to clean residue off the hook.  I prefer to hold it over the pot with pliers and melt the lead off with my little propane torch.  The hook comes out clean and can be reused as soon as it cools.

 

 I have reused 100s and had no problems with the hooks.

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Thank you!  I did not think of a torch.  That makes sense.  Now, just to need to figure out the right temperature to get the molds to fill.  I started with 6 on a Lee pot, but poured soon after it was melted.  I will need to check the temp in the future to see where it is at temp wise.  Small Ned jig with lead keepers and the keepers did not fill.  Same with a football head, the keepers did not fill.  Ordered some mold release and will try to warm the molds more, sitting on the top of the pot while the lead melted did not seem to really warm it up much.  

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Lead melts at around 620°.  If you have alloys in it you need higher temps.  When I used a Lee pot I ran it on 10 all the time.  Frankfort Arsenal drop out spray will help.  I have it on all of my molds.  
 

If you have acetone clean your mold with it.  Dry it and let everything evaporate before using the release agent.  Wait a few hours after coating the mold before you pour.
 

Try holding the mold up to the filler when you open it.  Sometimes that helps.  If you are working in a cold area you may have to heat the hooks.

 

Once in a while you run across a mold that has to be “cracked”.  That means slightly opening the mold as you pour.  I had a Poison Tail mold that would not fill one of the cavities unless I put a couple of pieces of paper in it next to the handle.  A penny wrapper was perfect for that job.

 

Please report back on your progress.

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I never pour lead without my torch. Like Jig Man said melt off

the bad pours with the torch. Also after placing the hook , keeper and or

the other components in the mold, blast them with the torch to heat them up.

Close the mold and pour your lead. You should also blast the area in the mold that is not filling,

with the torch. Your problems will go away.

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17 hours ago, dv616 said:

Thank you!  I did not think of a torch.  That makes sense.  Now, just to need to figure out the right temperature to get the molds to fill.  I started with 6 on a Lee pot, but poured soon after it was melted.  I will need to check the temp in the future to see where it is at temp wise.  Small Ned jig with lead keepers and the keepers did not fill.  Same with a football head, the keepers did not fill.  Ordered some mold release and will try to warm the molds more, sitting on the top of the pot while the lead melted did not seem to really warm it up much.  

So i have the mushroom head mold and i too have this issue on occasion where the collar doesnt fill completely. I find this can be a couple things…. Hook size used, quality of lead, heating up the lead and mold more. One thing ive found to help assuming you are using a bottom fill pot. I try to knock off any lead exposed outside fill nozzle and immidiate put the mold fill hole as close as possible to the nozxle before filling.

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You need mold release for most jig molds, just put a tea spoon size piece of candle wax on the lead as it melt to de gas the lead and use the candle smoke to coat the mold cavity. Set the mold on top of the lead pot to pre heat the mold.

A used pie tin is useful to catch molten lead and put slag in scooped off the lead pot using a old table spoon.

Be safe and wear safety glasses.

Tom

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It works for me the lead is bright and shinny and the jigs fall out of the mold. 

I snip off the lead spruce into the pie tin and hang the jigs on a wire as they are molded. I only make a 100 at a time because I buy 100 package of hooks.

When done molding jigs I file the spruce where clipped with the filings into the pie pan and empty the lead into the lead pot after discarding the slag scrap. 

Been doing this since ‘71 and use Lyman 1 lb ingots for good quality clean lead.

Tom

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Tom I used to smoke molds before Cadman introduced me to Frankfort Arsenal Dropout spray.  I had a mold that no amount of smoke worked.  It is cleaner, stays on longer and works better than smoke.

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6 hours ago, Jig Man said:

Tom I used to smoke molds before Cadman introduced me to Frankfort Arsenal Dropout spray.  I had a mold that no amount of smoke worked.  It is cleaner, stays on longer and works better than smoke.

Agree there are some good mold release available, just never had a lead mold that need it. Once the mold heats up after a few jigs the rest don’t stick. I am using single cavity molds.

Tom

 

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Get a thermometer so you know your lead temp. I like to pour at around 750. After bringing my 20# Lee pot up to temp on high, I turn it back to around 4 to maintain proper temp. This will vary a bit depending on lead level. Too hot will cause oxidation, too cool wil cause poor fill out.

Keep your lead pot at least half full if using a bottom pour pot. 

I like about a 1/8" - 3/16" gap between spout and sprue. Pour a decent size sprue. I want a little puddle on top of the mold.

Frankfort dropout spray is excellent.

You want at least 2% tin in your alloy. It'll flow better than pure lead.

Sitting the mold on top of the pot doesn't get it hot enough IME. I use an 1100w hotplate turned about 3/4 up. Make sure to keep your mold hinge pins oiled. I use 2 stroke oil.

Propane torch works well for reclaiming lead and hooks from bad pours.

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On 12/1/2023 at 7:40 PM, J Francho said:

That's some old school method. Never tried it though. 

Forgot that part. Works for me as well. Definitely want to do it outside. That sucker is gonna smoke.

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Hold with pliers then dip the bad pour back in the pot until it melts off. Once the hook has cooled you can just rub off whatever residue is left.

 

Frankfort Arsenal Dropout is what I use now instead of the candle wax soot. Candle wax works its just easier to use the Arsenal spray can. The Arsenal spray I started using on my silicone molds and the pouring spout of the spincast machine. 

 

Allen

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I used the Arsenal spray, and let the lead get a bit hotter.  The first Ned rig pour was about 50/50 but the football jigs did better.  Next I briefly heated the molds with a torch and only 1 out of 18 Ned jigs did not fill.  These are 1/16th and 1/8th so guessing small size makes it harder to fill the keeper area.  Size 4 500bp little nasty hook for reference.  

 

IMG_9442.jpeg

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I cast my own bullets, and even have my own cast bullet website (bulletmatch.com) though I haven't gotten into making lures yet. Incomplete fill out will most likely be due to a too cold mould temperature.

 

If you have a mould with a lot of detail, and or your want super crisp corners, adding 2%Sn to the melt will lower the surface tension and help fill out as well.

 

Using beeswax for flux instead of paraffin will also lower the surface tension and aid in fill out, for the first few casts after you flux.

 

Having the hooks heated a small amount, even if you can get them to 100º vs 60º, it'll help keep them from sucking heat from the melt, which in turn will help fill out.

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2 hours ago, dv616 said:

Also, if I grind that ridge off in the middle of the mold, a #2 hook should fit, single row at a time though, cannot do both sides of the mold at once.  I may see if I can put a bit of some kind in a drill press to remove the ridge.  

 

Dremel 482 bit is what I use for modification to hand pour molds. Also make sure you have clearance for the hook eye length. That looks like a print_a_lure mold BTW.

 

Allen

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  • 2 weeks later...

I finally gave up on my lee pot and put a screw in the pouring hole and took the bar out. Now it is just a melting pot and by using a spoon or ladle to fill the molds they fill much quicker and more reliably. The pouring hole on the lee pot was always needing poking and fiddling with the get a decent flow, and just wasn't worth the bother. 

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