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Ball mill media


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#1 hochroter

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Posted 16 February 2017 - 11:53 AM

United Nuclear is out of stock of their 1/2 lead media...they haven't gotten back to me on future availability.

 

The ebay media looks kind of trashy, unless someone can chime in on their experience.

 

Sky lighter is also out of stock, id rather not since they are so expensive.

 

Im kicking myself in the arse for throwing most of my pyro stuff out years ago   :angry:  :wacko:



#2 lloyd

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Posted 16 February 2017 - 01:00 PM

Check with Caleb -- www.woodysrocks.com

 

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Edited by lloyd, 16 February 2017 - 01:01 PM.

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#3 dynomike1

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Posted 17 February 2017 - 09:28 AM

Go to where you buy tires from and get some wheel weights. This will be the cheapest way. Do not heat over 600 deg. F.

http://www.ebay.com/..._1938908/i.html


Edited by dynomike1, 17 February 2017 - 09:30 AM.

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#4 lloyd

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Posted 17 February 2017 - 10:17 AM

Most tire stores will NOT convey lead weights to 'ordinary citizens' anymore, even though they must PAY to recycle them.

 

If you have a local small shop, they might be able to fix you up.

 

Beware that not all wheel weights are lead, anymore.  You'll have to hand-sort them.  Also, get thyself some linotype alloy with which to harden the lead.

 

Lloyd


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#5 davidh

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Posted 17 February 2017 - 12:16 PM

Some day, some day, I'm going to make a small foundry that can do 3000F, make a graphite mold, and cast my own brass milling media from scrap brass.



#6 lloyd

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Posted 17 February 2017 - 12:39 PM

Don't miss the fact that copper compounds won't hurt BP milling, but might be undesirable if you were milling (say) a chlorate or perchlorate.

 

Lloyd


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#7 hochroter

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Posted 17 February 2017 - 03:01 PM

Most tire stores will NOT convey lead weights to 'ordinary citizens' anymore, even though they must PAY to recycle them.

 

If you have a local small shop, they might be able to fix you up.

 

Beware that not all wheel weights are lead, anymore.  You'll have to hand-sort them.  Also, get thyself some linotype alloy with which to harden the lead.

 

Lloyd

 

Yeah I found out years ago that wheel weights are usually 75% lead and the other is tin...probably not a good idea.

 

Oh yeah thanks for the link lloyd spot on!


Edited by hochroter, 17 February 2017 - 07:01 PM.


#8 uncrichie

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Posted 18 February 2017 - 11:52 AM

Heres a great link explaining wheel weight composition and how to tell if they are lead,  steel, zinc etc.  I was lucky enough to run into a few hundred pounds of linotype 10 years ago so I used it for making my media (also for reloading),  I believe its 12% antimony and its hard as can be.

 

http://castboolits.g...g-Wheel-Weights

 

 

 

Almost forgot,  copper was used for years to add some hardness to some "type setting materials".  The amount is probably minuscule but worth noting here.  


Edited by uncrichie, 18 February 2017 - 12:03 PM.


#9 MrB

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Posted 21 February 2017 - 03:31 PM

Yeah I found out years ago that wheel weights are usually 75% lead and the other is tin...probably not a good idea.

 

That's really not a problem. The problem is that a lot, more and more, wheel-weights, are zink, which melt at a similar enough temperature to be a problem, if your not careful.

B!



#10 OldMarine

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Posted 21 February 2017 - 03:53 PM

If you need lead you need to befriend a plumber! Most old homes and businesses have leaded cast iron drain lines. Though I do little residential repair anymore I still come up with several hundred pounds of lead every year. You can get more good quality lead from 10 4" cast iron joints than from a bucket of wheel weights.


Come on! Name one other hobby in which you cheer as your money and hard work go up in smoke!

#11 chuckufarley

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Posted 21 February 2017 - 04:40 PM

Do you alloy that stuff with Linotype or antimony Patrick? I can get all the soft lead (lead pipe, joint filler, roof flashing)I want from work, but never knew if it would be worth it to alloy it, and make it hard enough for mill media. I guess at the worst I could use it for the .50 call muzzelloaders.

#12 lloyd

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Posted 21 February 2017 - 05:07 PM

Oh, it's worth it to alloy it, Chuck.  It makes a significant difference in the wear characteristics.

 

Lloyd


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#13 chuckufarley

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Posted 21 February 2017 - 05:15 PM

I realize that part Lloyd. What I meant was if it was worth it financially. I can get Linotype ingots (which I use for my current media) for about $15-$18 for 5lbs. Or a 30% antimony alloy for about the same price. Just wondering if its worth the hassle to alloy it myself.
Do you recommend a hardness or alloy to shoot for Lloyd?

#14 uncrichie

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Posted 21 February 2017 - 06:22 PM

I think if you talk to the guys manufacturing commercial amounts of 1/2" media you'll find they use 50/50 lead to linotype which would produce lead with 6% antimony which is hard enough.  I used 100% linotype (12% antimony) when I made my media and its very hard and puts a lot of undue stress on your mold and is miserable to cut the sprues off the ball but produces excellent media. Pure antimony can be added to molten lead but takes a certain amount of flux and must be done at about 600 degrees for good results.  A process probably best left for a smelter.  That's the reason people use linotype or other "type set" metal for the antimony content,  the alloying work is already done for you .  I can tell you after pouring and cutting off sprues for 100 lbs of media my hands cramped up and hurt for about a week (I'm an old guy).  It was a fun learning experience but I'll never do it again.  After you consider your time, materials,  blisters and lead spills on the garage porch floor,  you'll find the price these guys charge on the forum and elsewhere for the finished product a real deal and worth every penny!   Kurt


Edited by uncrichie, 21 February 2017 - 06:39 PM.


#15 chuckufarley

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Posted 21 February 2017 - 06:34 PM

Unc,

I feel your pain. I cast my own media a year or so ago. I got 50 lbs of Linotype, a 12 place mold, and a bottom pour melter. I said it then that if I had to do it again Id just buy it. I used straight Linotype for that run. After I got the hang of using the mold the media turned out great, but I have alot of wear on the mold. I was just curious, since I have the tools, and can get the soft lead pretty much free, if it was worth trying to get some high antimony alloy, and make up some spare media.

#16 OldMarine

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Posted 21 February 2017 - 06:46 PM

Chuck, when I was pouring my own I got an ingot of antimony from eBay and alloyed it myself and then my brother got me some Linotype. What I did not have was a mold that would pour 35lbs of media in one fell swoop so I broke down and bought the rest!


Come on! Name one other hobby in which you cheer as your money and hard work go up in smoke!

#17 uncrichie

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Posted 21 February 2017 - 06:55 PM

Chuck,  oh yea its always worth it.  It saves time not having to clean out old media for a different mill run.  I would probably do it again 5-10 pounds at a time in between bullet casting (another hobby).  I originally used a gang mold like the one you describe but didn't have the hand strength to open the handle to cut off 12 sprues when using pure linotype so I only used 6 of the cavities which helped.  Then I found using a fishing sinker mold with 12 cavities worked better but the balls were all connected to each other by a network of sprue channels that had to be cut off with diagonal cutters.  I had to keep switching hands for the cutting process.  What we won't do to try and save a buck,  and usually don't.



#18 chuckufarley

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Posted 21 February 2017 - 07:02 PM

Lol yeah I spent more money then if I would have bought it from Caleb. But its fun to try new things. And I still have the tools. Me and my friend have .50 cal muzzelloaders too, so I could always use the mold, and soft lead for free bullets.

Patrick,
Did you have a hard time getting the antimony to melt and alloy with the pure lead? Vie heard that can be a problem. Also a bit of a health risk.

#19 OldMarine

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Posted 21 February 2017 - 07:21 PM

No' I have a bud who pours fishing lures for a living and he can ramp the heat up in his bottom shot pot to ludicrous degrees. I broke the bar up in the vise and it looked like Gollum going down in the lava. He poured it into one pound increments for me then I came home and decided it sucked too bad to mess with!


Come on! Name one other hobby in which you cheer as your money and hard work go up in smoke!

#20 lloyd

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Posted 21 February 2017 - 07:25 PM

Chuck,

I'm not an expert on alloying lead media.  It's best to get advice from folks like Unc, who've done it enough to know.

 

I have cast a LOT of pure lead media, but have always purchased hardened media.

 

Lloyd


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