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Thread: What is this lead?

  1. #1

    What is this lead?

    I acquired 60 lbs of lead today, but was not told where it came from. So far, all I have dealt with is wheel weights and range scrap. Is this roofing lead or what precisely?


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  2. #2
    Boolit Bub
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    Looks like roofing or shower base/water seal.. Is it dead soft?

  3. #3
    Boolit Master Rcmaveric's Avatar
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    Definately looks like roofing or xray room sheet lead. Most likely soft. If you can bend it and easily deform it then it safe to say its soft lead and almost pure.

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  4. #4
    Mikes around .37 inches thick and is very easy to bend. Guess it is time buy some rotometals super hard.

  5. #5
    Boolit Master


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    Or lino.

    I keep lino and tin on hand for alloying.

    Looks like soft flashing, pan or shielding sheets.

  6. #6
    Boolit Master


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    The larger piece in the foreground is definitely chimney flashing and, most likely, pure lead. Positive of this because, until he sold out and retired, a good buddy was a roofing contractor and I used to find a bucket or two of the stuff in my driveway every now and then. Still got a couple hundred pounds, fluxed and cast into ingots, stacked in the corner of my workshop.

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  7. #7
    Boolit Master
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    Step flashing. Where the shingles end butt into a vertical surface. 7"x7" up to 10"x12" when flattened. Usually dead soft.

  8. #8
    Vendor Sponsor D Crockett's Avatar
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    you can weigh that lead after you clean it up and add 2 times that amount of clip on ww and still have good usable bullet lead I have done that many times D Crockett

  9. #9
    Boolit Master
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    OR............. if you shoot a muzzle loader, you have a good start.

  10. #10
    Boolit Master
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    Guys, it could be old telephone cable sheath or lead sleeve for a splice case. Got a piece laying on my desk right now. Easily bent with the hand and is pure lead I believe.

    Rosewood
    Evangelical, deplorable redneck and proud of it.

  11. #11
    Boolit Buddy
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    I picked up 320 lb of lead that looked exactly like that from the local junk yard a few weeks ago at .80 per pound. There was sections which had a thin layer of plywood stuck to it, so I assumed it came from roofing...but it was soft. I cut it into manageable strips, folded and pounded it into flat squares to fit easily in the melting pot. Haven't done a hardness test on the ingots yet, but the ingots have a blue hue to them..the lead had a rainbow effect on the surface when melted, so pretty sure it's close to pure lead. 320 lbs melted down to 307 lbs of ingots. Plan on mixing it with some coww and add either pewter or foundry type I have on hand for an alloy.

  12. #12
    Boolit Man mpkunz's Avatar
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    Have you melted it yet ? My friend and I obtained lead sheet from a local scrap dealer that looked like that, and it contained contained cadmium. We had to return it. Cadmium is cancer causing, real cancer causing, not "known to the state of California to cause cancer" like ordinary table is in California.

  13. #13
    Boolit Master

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    I agree with the others that it is some form of sheet lead. Maybe roof flashing, maybe something from a shower, maybe from an X-Ray room, maybe even cable sheathing. Which ever it is, it should be very soft. Personally, I would smelt it together in one batch and make it as PB. Then later on you have the option to use it as is or to blend it with harder stuff. Nice Score!
    Last edited by lightman; 03-12-2018 at 08:26 AM.

  14. #14
    Boolit Master


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    You should be able to mark it with your fingernail if dead soft. It will make your wheel weight stash last lots longer.
    Information not shared. is wasted.

  15. #15
    Boolit Master


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    Quote Originally Posted by rosewood View Post
    Guys, it could be old telephone cable sheath or lead sleeve for a splice case. Got a piece laying on my desk right now. Easily bent with the hand and is pure lead I believe.

    Rosewood
    Son cable sheathing can be .5-1% antimony.

  16. #16
    Boolit Master

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    One of the older Lyman books listed cable sheathing as 98-98.5% lead. Thats a little harder than stick on weights and sheet lead but still soft enough to use most places suitable for soft lead. I've killed several deer with round balls cast from cable.

  17. #17
    Boolit Master RogerDat's Avatar
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    We will seldom get pure unless we buy it from a foundry. I like the term "plain" or "soft" lead and use it as pure. Little bit of Sb used by manufacturer to help it form or some joint solder someplace in the melt isn't a problem for most of what we do.

    Big batches are key. That way you have your "plain" ingots to use and they will be consistent throughout the whole batch so your recipes using them will be consistent.
    Je suis Charlie
    Scrap.... because all the really pithy and emphatic four letter words were taken and we had to describe this way of getting casting material somehow.
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  18. #18
    Boolit Master


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    Quote Originally Posted by lightman View Post
    One of the older Lyman books listed cable sheathing as 98-98.5% lead. Thats a little harder than stick on weights and sheet lead but still soft enough to use most places suitable for soft lead. I've killed several deer with round balls cast from cable.
    Agreed, unless it is for revolver. Any PRB, should be fine with lead that is 7-8 instead of 5-6.

    Revolver though.. Hard lead I a problem, unless you cast say .451 for a 44, and barely have any ring to shave, etc.

  19. #19
    It's really just an excuse to buy some super hard anyway

    Where do you actually find -type? Other than ebay.

  20. #20
    Boolit Bub
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    This is not cable sheating;cable sheating looks like....a cable with a hole in it's center..
    This is roof flashing and it is quite soft,pure lead(5 to 5.5 BHN).Perfect for black powder guns,perfect to alloy with tin and antimony,perfect with 50% wheel weights and still perfect with 20 to 25% lyno,more than perfect if alloyed with above mentionned and water cooled,perfect for.....well,I think you got the point.Nice find!

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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
GC Gas Check