View Full Version : Electric pot wattage ratings

11-17-2005, 10:28 PM
I have an old and well used Lee 10 pound pot. It just won't keep up with melting lead to feed a 6 banger. So I was discussing the problem with Slughammer and he suggests I measure the resistance from my plug and see if the element is maybe burning out. So I did and got 21 ohms. Plug that into the old P=V^2/R formula with 110 volt power and I get 576 watts. Pretty close to the 500 Lee claims.

So the questions for the multitude are:

What pot do you have?
What is the wattage rating?
Will it keep up with the demands of hicap molds?

11-18-2005, 12:40 AM
ive got a lee 10# bottom pour and 4 two cavs.i dont get in a hurry and it wont keep up. ive found the mini-muffins melt faster.plus when my pot is 3/4 empty,my arms need a break,i need to sort and seperate and reorganize my table.

11-18-2005, 02:02 AM
I have both the 10 pound and 20 pound Lee bottom draw pots. I understand your problem with a 6 cavity mold, especially if you are casting large boolits. As you know, they really don't hold 10 or 20 pounds, unless you are using pure lead and filling them to the brim.

I have a clamp on ammeter, and have checked current draw on both pots. The 20 pounder is very little higher in current draw than the 10 pounder, which means it's trying to melt twice as much metal with only about 15% more heat. Lee's claims are really close, the 20 pounder is about 700 watts.

If I were in you shoes, I'd premelt some alloy in an additional Lee pot, either another 10 pounder, or better yet buy a 20 pounder. You could use the new 20 pounder as primary and the 10 pounder to premelt. Assuming a 20 amp breaker, you can run both pots on the same circuit.

11-18-2005, 02:06 AM
none of the little pots will keep up .I have a set of 25# pots to cast from I dip out of one pour over the other and add sprus to the second I then pour liquid metal from the second to the first this sorta keeps up using two double cavity 550 gn moulds................. Dean

David R
11-18-2005, 07:41 AM
I think my RCBS is 800 watts. It will keep up if I put ingots on top of it when I plug it in. I then add the preheated ingots as there is room. It will keep up with any mold I have.


11-18-2005, 02:44 PM
I never had a problem keeping up with 6 cavity molds or (2) 4 cavities. (I just got a second set of Lee handles, so I'll have to try running (2) 6'ers). I don't preheat my lead either. I do periodically add single ingots when the pot gets too hot.

I took a look at my Lyman 10lb pot and sure enough it says 115v 1000W.

11-18-2005, 02:49 PM
My rcbs pot will keep up with the 6 cav molds ranging from 120gr to .45cal 230gr with me adding sprus back to the pot as I cast and I can add 1lb ingots tho I usually don't. I don't like to cast for more than about an hour. I tried a Lee 10 lb. pot some years ago and gave up on it cause I could'nt use it with 4 cav molds. Every time I put a 1lb ingot into it it would go slushy. The quickest pot I ever owned was my Lyman/saeco 1000 watter. You can cast with 2-4 cavities and add ingots as you go.

11-18-2005, 04:22 PM
I just started using a 1500 watt hot plate to heat a Stainless Steel pot to refill my Lee 20 lb pot .

I start with 25 lb in it and 10 -15 in the Lee pot

I refill with a 1 cup ladle , that way I can pour lots of the 300 gr slugs in the 6 gang mold


11-18-2005, 06:18 PM
Thanks for all the replies. When I got my first 6 banger I tried the Lee pot and it was an exercise in frustration. 2 pours to get the mold working and it was time to add lead, add lead and the pot cooled off to slush, repeat. I solved that problem by melting 60-80 pounds on the Coleman and ladle casting till my arm fell off. I just can't see firing up the Coleman and the Lee at the same time. Not much interested in a 150 or 200 dollar pot either. Looks like I'll just stick to ladle casting the hicaps.

11-21-2005, 02:38 PM
I cast lots of bullets and I used to use 3 LEE 20 pounders to keep up. I got sick of that so I took my 4" clearance LEE pot and put another heating element into it. Now I have a 2.5" clearance pot with 1400 watts. Was easier than I expected. Now I just need to put a "real" thermostat in it. I have a 220 Volt RCBS coming in the mail soon, we'll see if it can keep up. At least when they say it holds 22 pounds it might be true, unlike the 16 pounds I can get into my LEE.