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Thread: Spoon/ Ladle clean up

  1. #1
    Boolit Master
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    Spoon/ Ladle clean up

    My ladleing (sp?) spoon is really funky looking right now. All kinds of crud on it, seems like she is gettin' a bit rusty too.

    Any slick way of cleaning this spoon up?

    thanks.

    BTW: Nice idea on the paint stick stirrer for a flux. Works better than anything I have ever tried so far.

    bill boy

  2. #2
    Boolit Master
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    Hello, soldierbill1. at end of casting session, while still hot. I use a wire hand brush on it. To clean pot, as well as ladels..with empty pot..if hot you might want to heat water to boiling first & fill pot to top..let boil for awhile & all crud will pour out..just be sure ladel/spoons are completly dry before sticking in molten lead!

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    I don't care about my skimmer spoon as long as the pot is clean, but if it really bothers you, you can get the crud off of it by getting it hot (like in your next casting session) and scrub around on it with the tip of your paint stick. That will get most of it, and a wire brush will get most of the rest.

    Gear
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    I just add a pea sized nugget of beeswax at the end of my casting sessions and dip my ladle and spoon in it to coat it most of the garbage just falls off.
    If God didn't want man to eat animals, he wouldn't have made them out of MEAT!

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    soldierbilly1, are you using Marvacrap? If so a wire wheel mounted in a power drill will grind it off. I hate that stuff for many reasons and that is one of them.

    Rick
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    if it's the ladle wire brush it and spray it with mold release. this will keep it clean.
    it's all an educated guess,,,, till the trigger is pulled.

    the more i find out about shootin boolits, the more it contradicts everything i ever learned about shooting jaxketed.

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    Quote Originally Posted by runfiverun View Post
    if it's the ladle wire brush it and spray it with mold release. this will keep it clean.
    Hey, there IS a use for aerosol mold release! How about that? Too bad my mould release went in the trash with my Marvakrap a long time ago.

    Gear
    You can't fix Stupid, but you can occasionally head it off before it hurts something. --Stephen Adams

    To universalize one's experience and state it as the norm is always thin ice on which to stand.--CharGar

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  8. #8
    Boolit Master trixter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by soldierbilly1 View Post
    My ladleing (sp?) spoon is really funky looking right now. All kinds of crud on it, seems like she is gettin' a bit rusty too.

    Any slick way of cleaning this spoon up?

    thanks.

    BTW: Nice idea on the paint stick stirrer for a flux. Works better than anything I have ever tried so far.

    bill boy
    Go to the nearest Dollar Tree and get a couple new ones. OOPs I just realized you said 'Ladleing". Sorry, they probably don't have them at Dollar Tree. I bought a couple of S/S spoons there to stir and scoop out the crud, and the lead doesn't stick to them.
    Last edited by trixter; 02-15-2012 at 01:36 PM.

  9. #9
    Will smoking a clean ladle minimize the crud buildup?

  10. #10
    Boolit Master



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    I use a ball of stainless steel wool, and a bit of water. works real well on my big pot, and my ladle.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by stubshaft View Post
    I just add a pea sized nugget of beeswax at the end of my casting sessions and dip my ladle and spoon in it to coat it most of the garbage just falls off.

    +1 Beeswax pr paraffin will clean it right up with little or no scrubbing.
    Note: It must be right out of the melt for this to work.
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  12. #12
    Boolit Master
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    I bought a couple of S/S spoons there to stir and scoop out the crud, and the lead doesn't stick to them.
    Drill holes along one edge of the spoon. The lead will flow back into the pot. As for the dross sticking to ANY spoon, it's a nature of the beast for casting. I steel brush mine every now and then but it will continue to collect dross - more so if one uses excess bees wax as a flux

    For the ladle, use it to stir the flux. The flux will clean the lead sticking to the cast iron of the ladle. Then just tap it on the side of the pot
    Regards
    John

  13. #13
    Boolit Master
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    Tapping the ladle on the edge of a cast iron pot may not be the best idea you ever had. Tapping on the edge of a cast pot may result in cracking the cast and pot failure. Try getting the crudded up ladle very hot and plunging it into very cold water. This will often loosen the crud so that it can be peeled off the ladle.
    R.D.M.

  14. #14
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    Put the spoon/ladle in the melted lead so it reaches the same temp as the melted lead. Remove the spoon and tap it on the bench. Any lead/stuff left can be wiped off with a towel/rag...
    Last edited by mdi; 06-29-2013 at 04:48 PM.
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  15. #15
    Boolit Master ku4hx's Avatar
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    I use a stainless steel serving spoon and a 1970s vintage Lyman ladle. When good and hot I just wipe them quickly with a piece of dry heavy cloth. The inside of the ladle I scrape out with an old blade screwdriver; the spout I clean with an old drill bit.

    Mostly I want the heavy crud off or out and the hole free flowing ... beauty is for boolits only.

  16. #16
    Boolit Master FAsmus's Avatar
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    Gentlemen;

    In all the additions to this thread nobody has mentioned the danger involved with cleaning dross-spoons. (I cast with a turkey-cooker burner and thus the pot never accumulates any problematical dross)

    It is my view that the junk that coats our spoons is most probably chock-full of lead oxide ~ you know; the stuff that is poisonous and can be readily metabolized by our bodies?

    Don't scrub it off our spoon with a wire brush unless you're outside, it is a windy day and you are definitely UPWIND!

    As for a wire-wheel on your bench grinder - within a confined space and no noticeable ventilation ~ forget it!

    When my spoon gets fouled I heat it cherry red with my blow-torch (remaining up-wind). This dries out all the old flux and makes the junk cake quite fragile. Then, outside, in the wind, upwind, I scrape it off with a edged tool.

    Good afternoon,
    Forrest
    Last edited by FAsmus; 06-30-2013 at 04:32 PM. Reason: additional text

  17. #17
    Boolit Master
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    x2 on the lead issues... I dont like wire wheeling, wire brushing, any Water contact (That and the Tinsel Fairy visits..) or any of the like because of that...

    I just wait till it's good and hot and bang it on something solid... Most crud falls off... Remaining crud is not really what I care too much about...

  18. #18
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    I just wait till it's good and hot and bang it on something solid... Most crud falls off...
    Yep, this works fine. It'll clean my Lyman ladle back down to nice shiny new metal.

    **NOTE!!- you are banging off red hot (700+ degree) stuff, which is mostly droplets of liquid metal with a little sand/dross/rust mixed in. Wear a glove and long sleeves and don't look at it while you're bangin'!
    Colt 1860 - It just feels right.

  19. #19
    Boolit Master
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    I use stainless steel spoons obtained at the Salvation Army store. One solid, one perforated. The perforated one is real handy when melting wheel weights and other things with lots of trash as it lets the lead run through. Also good for stirring the pot and scraping the crud off the side walls underneath the lead level. Once that is gone and I am dealing with just the powdery stuff the edge is fine for skimming.

  20. #20
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    I have a Lyman cast iron ladle, the kind with the little spout on the side, when stuff starts adhering I submerge it in pot of molten lead and when it's good and hot wipe the outside and the spout with heavy rough cloth , like burlap- wipe quickly. Then at end of a casting sesson , get it good and hot again and gently tap the round body, not the spout ,on my wood bench top. most of the crud falls off and out of the insides. Might do it twice if a lot of crud has gathered in the inside of the ladle.
    Wiping the spout is the easiest and quickest way to keep the spout clean. But the Lyman design doesn't let you wipe out the insides easily so I do the heat and gentle tap. If you have a Lee open ladle the heat and wipe should clean the outside and inside.

    Gary

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
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