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Thread: Does anybody process copper jackets?

  1. #1
    Boolit Buddy
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    Does anybody process copper jackets?

    Got 250 lbs of range scrap dropped off at my place today. I have tried to take the leftover dirty copper to the scrappers before, they wanted none of it. So i was thinking of building a mini foundry and processing the leftover copper into ingots.

    Anybody try this or have experience?

  2. #2
    Boolit Bub
    JimmyTheDentist's Avatar
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    thought about the same thing as i have access to almost unlimited range scrap.

    but the cost of equipment and fuel to reach 2000 degrees seems prohibitively expensive if all you're going to recover is the little bit of copper from jackets.

    looks sort of fun though!

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vus44ljHGU0

    J the D
    "Sometimes a society becomes too stupid to survive." Mark Steyn

  3. #3
    Boolit Buddy
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    I have a small but steady supply. An older gentleman brings me buckets a couple times a year and i get to keep half of all the rendered lead as payment. So the copper would add up. As long as i break even i would be happy.

  4. #4
    Boolit Bub
    JimmyTheDentist's Avatar
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    forgot to mention that the current market price for scrap copper is roughly $2.50 per pound . . . . we'll need a LOT of reclaimed jackets to reach a break-even point.

    Jimmy
    "Sometimes a society becomes too stupid to survive." Mark Steyn

  5. #5
    Boolit Buddy
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    Was thinking of making a good minifoundry. Couple hundred dollar investment if built with higher quality items.


  6. #6
    Plan on doing this as soon as I get cast off my ankle in 3 weeks, got the foundry the other day. I have about 6 5 gallon buckets of jackets.

  7. #7
    Boolit Bub
    JimmyTheDentist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reloading Rod View Post
    . . . I have about 6 5 gallon buckets of jackets.
    would love to know how you make out!

    i can picture 6 x buckets but i can't even guess at the pounds . . . i'm curious about your total starting weight and then what sort of finished product you end up with.

    and if you get really particular you could review your new foundry equipment and try to estimate how much fuel and time and money you invested in your project.

    hope you keep us posted.

    Jimmy the Dentist
    "Sometimes a society becomes too stupid to survive." Mark Steyn

  8. #8
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    MaryB's Avatar
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    Once you have a foundry and crucibles you start making stuff... friend makes copper yard art from wire the scrapyard won't take. Makes a sand mold for various lawn decorations. Sells them at car swap meets..

  9. #9
    Boolit Bub
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    Quote Originally Posted by MaryB View Post
    Once you have a foundry and crucibles you start making stuff...
    Mary's point is a real good one . . . might be a lot more satisfying and economical to use your foundry and whatever you eventually melt in it to create something more valuable than simple ingots of scrap metal.

    and this is where i fall down . . . my artistic and creative talents may allow me to someday make a lump of metal but not much else.

    J the D
    "Sometimes a society becomes too stupid to survive." Mark Steyn

  10. #10
    Boolit Buddy
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    Quote Originally Posted by JimmyTheDentist View Post
    Mary's point is a real good one . . . might be a lot more satisfying and economical to use your foundry and whatever you eventually melt in it to create something more valuable than simple ingots of scrap metal.

    and this is where i fall down . . . my artistic and creative talents may allow me to someday make a lump of metal but not much else.

    J the D
    Dribble it over the edge of a cinderblock and call it an impersionistic representation of the falls.

  11. #11
    Boolit Buddy OldBearHair's Avatar
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    Well, You might try pouring molten copper in a fire ant mound https://youtu.be/NUYqGX6a4vQ

  12. #12
    Boolit Bub

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    I like the possibilities of whats possible from this!

  13. #13
    Boolit Buddy
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    Look up flower pot forge.
    QUIS CUSTODIET IPSOS CUSTODES?

  14. #14
    Boolit Buddy
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    Quote Originally Posted by jdfoxinc View Post
    Look up flower pot forge.
    Look up, up, up, post 5. Video of flowerpot forge

  15. #15
    Boolit Buddy Salmon-boy's Avatar
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    If you're going to pour in steel molds, I would highly suggest getting some Boron Nitride spray:
    http://www.zypcoatings.com/top-selli...sol-lubricoat/
    "Unnh, Negative. I am a meat popsicle."

    Chuck

  16. #16
    My plans are to make things from the copper and brass which is unusable for reloading. I started making knives recently I use repurposed material for them, so I figure I can make bolster for handles, etc. I'm sure my cost into it will take a while to get back, but I enjoy messing with stuff and it will keep me out of trouble.

  17. #17
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    JonB_in_Glencoe's Avatar
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    I would find a different metals scrapper that will take dirty jackets.
    If you find someone, be aware that if clean copper is going for $2.50, dirty copper maybe as low as 90.

    Besides the local type scrap yards, there are many individuals who hobby scrap (My friend is one), he will collect all kinds of stuff, then haul a large trailer load of one specific metal to the Large recyclers in a big city, who will pay more, but often require a minimum amount of tonnage.

  18. #18
    Boolit Buddy
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    Post 5 is not a flower pot forge that costs about $20.00 to make.
    QUIS CUSTODIET IPSOS CUSTODES?

  19. #19
    Boolit Buddy
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    Quote Originally Posted by jdfoxinc View Post
    Post 5 is not a flower pot forge that costs about $20.00 to make.
    You didnt watch the video then

  20. #20
    Boolit Buddy
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    My plan is to first make copper sulfate solution by dissolving multiple jackets in sulfuric acid, then reverse plating onto a copper plate from the jacketed bullets. If the copper plate becomes rough, from uneven plating, heat it and beat it flat again. Then use it to plate cast bullets.
    QUIS CUSTODIET IPSOS CUSTODES?

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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