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View Full Version : Need opinions on LBT's Hardness tester



Haywire Haywood
10-10-2005, 06:58 AM
I'm looking for opinions on LBT's Hardness Tester. I was all set to buy one, been hearing that they were the best thing since sliced bread till just recently when I saw some opposing remarks at another site.

What do you think? Does it give repeatable, accurate measurements? Do you find it useful for your casting?

thanks,
Ian

powderburnerr
10-10-2005, 10:29 AM
Now that you are here ,Check out buckshots tester . do a search and look at the pictures............ Dean

the link to the tester is in the for sale forum about 10 or 12 down "lead hardness tester for sale ". authored by buckshot and includes pictures

Catshooter
10-10-2005, 09:24 PM
Haywire,

I can't comment on the LBT, but I can on Buckshot's. It is suberb, and well worth the $56 he charges, IIRC.


Cat

Haywire Haywood
10-10-2005, 09:28 PM
According to Buckshot's post, he is out of the 8 he had for sale.

Ian

ammohead
10-10-2005, 10:42 PM
HH,

I'll reply to your post.

I have had an LBT hardness tester for over 10 years. That would be pre IRS Veral manufacture. It works. Damned good in fact. I doubt that it is scientifically accurate in terms of bhn or repeatability. It takes a "feel" to zero it the same everytime. But for what we want out of a hardness scale...it just plain works. Now, if buckshot put his name on a hardness scale, then without seeing one I would testify that it works. I know the man. Quality through and through.

Honesty, that's another story. I do recall buckshot saying that he couldn't shoot a steenking peestol. I stand before you to tell that he is a bald face liar, and you should take no bets against his pistoleroness. Ain't worth a crap offhand with a big bore rifle though.

Veral I have only had written correspondance and I did manage to get through to him via telephone, twice! Such efforts are not to be recommended unless you are big on futility. Seeing as buckshots scale is out of print, I would go with Veral's. Day will come when you can't buy them anymore and they will only go up in value.

ammohead

waksupi
10-10-2005, 11:47 PM
If Buckshot's is out of print, be sure to check out Gussy's Cabin Tree tester. I have one, and it is a great multifunction tool, built about like an anvil. Should last until the Second Coming or so.

Dye
10-11-2005, 01:41 AM
Haywire
I have a LBT Hardness Tester and it is ok, just have to be careful to get the set line line the same every time. I have had it for a while. The price was 29.00+ S&H and it still works. I also have the Saeco,Cabin Tree ,Lee and one I made with a arbor press,10 mm ball,a pressure guage and dial indicator.
They all have their limits.
Be carefull Dye

Haywire Haywood
10-11-2005, 08:00 AM
Thanks for the replies all. After thinking about it for several days, I have about decided to skip the Hardess Tester altogether. It costs $90+ S&H and I don't think I'll get $90 worth of usefulness out of it.

I only use 2 alloys. Straight roofing lead for front stuffer RBs and conicals and straight Wheelweights for 357max and 45-70 smokeless loads. I recently learned how to anneal WW boolits down to about a BHN of 9 for 45-70/90 BP boolits (altho I haven't put it into practice yet, that'll be another post and another question). I don't demand pinpoint accuracy from my cast boolits. I don't recall where I heard the acronym but I shoot for MOD... minute of deer. Consistant 3" groups at 100yds make me smile broadly. I rarely shoot at deer over that range and 3" won't make a hill of beans to a deer on a heart/lung shot.

thanks again for your input,
Ian

Bass Ackward
10-11-2005, 08:41 AM
I only use 2 alloys. Straight roofing lead for front stuffer RBs and conicals and straight Wheelweights for 357max and 45-70 smokeless loads. Ian


Ian,

Yep. Don't waste your money on any kind. If that is all you use, and the only ways you use it, you will never need a hardness tester.

ammohead
10-11-2005, 10:47 PM
[QUOTE=Haywire Haywood]I don't think I'll get $90 worth of usefulness out of it.

HH,

If that's the case, I agree don't spend the money. Truth is I rarely use mine anymore. It was handy to learn with though, and I like having it around.

If you need to know about a particular alloy or are just curious, you can always mail me a couple of boolits or someone else closer if necesary. Noone on this board would turn you down. This is like having complete access to the greatest running cast bullet experiment on earth. Got a question, ask. Need something you can't quite afford, ask. Want to try a boolit before buying the mould, ask.

ammohead

powderburnerr
10-11-2005, 10:49 PM
I second Ammoheads post................. Dean

Haywire Haywood
10-12-2005, 05:04 AM
I appreciate the offer Ammohead, I may take you up on that sometime.

Ian

Buckshot
10-13-2005, 01:40 AM
.............Ammohead, " I stand before you to tell that he is a bald face liar, and you should take no bets against his pistoleroness. Ain't worth a crap offhand with a big bore rifle though."

.........I do appreciate the previous compliment, but you might be forcing me to open a big can of whup-*** on the latter. Feeling a bit frisky are we, hmmmmmmmm? :D

What's the term? Things could get Jumptrap ugly if we're not carefull[smilie=w:

..........Buckshot

GLL
10-15-2005, 10:48 AM
Buckshot:

Is that your mule in the avatar? My grandfather raised work mules in central Texas when I was very young and I enjoyed being around them more than the horses !

Thanks again for all of the mould work and the hardness tester ! I will post a few photos of the beautiful hollow-point bullets when things calm down around here.

Best Regards,

Jerry

Buckshot
10-16-2005, 07:44 AM
Buckshot:

Is that your mule in the avatar? My grandfather raised work mules in central Texas when I was very young and I enjoyed being around them more than the horses !

Thanks again for all of the mould work and the hardness tester ! I will post a few photos of the beautiful hollow-point bullets when things calm down around here.

Best Regards,

Jerry

Jerry, yup that was my Toby. I had him from a 4 year old for 18 years. We had quite a few adventures together. He was a good boy. My buddy had a mule too and we'd go on weekend county rides and provide wrecker service for people with idiot horses (mostly airheads, oops I mean Arabians). Many was the time I had to use him to bulldoze horses into creeks and stuff.

My maternal grandmother was born and raised on a farm in Missouri. Her older brother loved mules and still used them for many things long after they'd been 'mechanized' :D. He had a span of 4, Tip, Bob, Jerry and Shorty. I have an old photo of my grandma standing in front of them. Of course it was black and white but she said they were red Missouri mules. She said it was a big deal when the mule man would drive his herd around to the farms each year.

...............Buckshot

jimbo500
10-18-2011, 08:16 PM
I believe the hardness tester listed here does an exceptable job for the application (proper hardness for shooting).
There is a lower cost methodology that is equal or better (relative to cost)
All you need is a ingot of pure lead (available at any plumber supply or through places like roto metals, an ingot of the lead to be tested and a ball bearing (I like to use a 1" or larger.
Then you simply place the ball bearing between the two ingots and compress ( i use a simple shop vise to do this but one could also you a loading press if careful.
You compress until you have a dimple in the test ingot and the lead ingot.
Then all you do is measure the two dimples with a micrometer and compare to each other in the following formula:
Brinell hardness = 5 (brinell hardness of pure lead)* (Dia. of indent in lead/Dia. of indent in alloy)Squared

Example: Indent in lead= .24, indent in alloy = .18 then Brinell = 5*(.24/.18) *(.24/.18) which = 8.87 Brinnel of the alloy.

It is not important how deep the dent is just the comparison of the two. Making the dent a little larger minimizes the measurement error and makes the results more accurate. Simple!

Bret4207
10-19-2011, 07:25 AM
Wonder what ever happened to Haywire? I didn't realize it'd been 3 years since he posted.

gefiltephish
10-24-2011, 04:29 PM
I bought an LBT used for 50 bucks. I don't know how technically accurate it is, but it does allow me to test the relative difference in my alloy's/bullets.

I use it on top of a file cabinet. At first I was finding it to be somewhat inconsistent. One day I was staring at the thing quite perplexed at the reading, and then entirely by accident I began drumming my fingers on top of the file cabinet near the tester. Well, that little bit of vibration cause the needle to rise and then stop right about where I was expecting it to be. I've been using this technique since with apparently satisfactory results. I just don't have any standard alloy to compare it to though. Next time I order from Rotometals I'll get some pure lead.

R.M.
10-24-2011, 06:21 PM
I have a LBT tester, and like it a lot. It does have it's limitations, but it does well enough for me. I find the direct reading to be a plus. No charts or measuring. It's not very good at measuring pure though, and I think Veral points that out in his instructions.