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Thread: Lyman Mold Question

  1. #21
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by georgerkahn View Post
    ...I bought a real el cheapo hot plate, which I have a piece of aluminum on...
    geo
    Attachment 254065
    George, that is...ah...a really BIG piece of aluminum...

    I'd guess it takes a good while to warm up, but, once it does, it probably gets your molds nice and toasty.

    I use a hot plate too, for my aluminum 8 cav molds. I've been just putting the mold right onto the coil element. Maybe I'm risking damage to the blocks?

  2. #22
    Boolit Buddy Phlier's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kevin c View Post
    George, that is...ah...a really BIG piece of aluminum...

    I'd guess it takes a good while to warm up, but, once it does, it probably gets your molds nice and toasty.

    I use a hot plate too, for my aluminum 8 cav molds. I've been just putting the mold right onto the coil element. Maybe I'm risking damage to the blocks?
    Yes, you are. I've warped two aluminum molds beyond use by doing that.
    "Things sure are a lot more like the way they are now than they used to be." --Yogi Berra

  3. #23
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    A variation on the hot plate. I made a three sided - 1 inch stock steel - device that sits on top of my burner. The "legs" of the rack extend beyond the size on my burner, but the triangle thus formed is small enough to hold all my cast iron pots centered, steady & vertical over the burner. Then I crafted a six sided steel (with three slots to marry up to the three legs sticking out) windscreen to sit upon the rack. The windscreen also has a flat steel table top with a hole cut out to fit my pots. Think of a top hat with a hole in the top. Allows my melt to warm quickly and makes a table to set my molds on so they warm up.

    I'd had it with my pot wiggling off center and occasionally slipping off vertical. This solved that. Adjusting a wobbly pot full of molten lead was just too much excitement for me. Now I have windscreen tall enough to come to the top edge of my pot and a useable surface to rest my molds on.

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phlier View Post
    Yes, you are. I've warped two aluminum molds beyond use by doing that.
    Thanks for relating the first hand experience. I guess I've just been lucky so far. Rotary saw blade or other metal plate it shall be.

  5. #25
    Boolit Buddy
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    A garage sale toaster oven they last forever and have always worked very well for me.

  6. #26
    Boolit Buddy Phlier's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kevin c View Post
    Thanks for relating the first hand experience. I guess I've just been lucky so far. Rotary saw blade or other metal plate it shall be.
    Yup, you'd think I would've learned after the first one.
    "Things sure are a lot more like the way they are now than they used to be." --Yogi Berra

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by kevin c View Post
    George, that is...ah...a really BIG piece of aluminum...

    I'd guess it takes a good while to warm up, but, once it does, it probably gets your molds nice and toasty.

    I use a hot plate too, for my aluminum 8 cav molds. I've been just putting the mold right onto the coil element. Maybe I'm risking damage to the blocks?
    What you do not see, is I have a hole drilled in the aluminum in which I have a PID thermocouple which (I use PID for several different operations) slides in when casting, to keep aluminum block at ~350*F. Bion, I was at a local junk yard seeking lead some years back, and I spied this aluminum disk. There is an ALCOA plant ~35 from said yard, and I thought there may have been a connection? I don't recall amount paid, other than it was much higher (by the pound) than I had anticipated -- but, in retrospect, have no regrets. Not in picture is an inverted metal can with a "mould doorway" cut into it which sits atop the aluminum, which further keeps moulds -- I like to use two different moulds, casting in tandem -- at "right" temperature.
    geo

  8. #28
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    My aluminum plate is about 1/4" thick so I bolted a small piece that's drilled and tapped for the type TC shown to it. Nice even heat across the surface.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Click image for larger version. 

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    Mike

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  9. #29
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    midnight's Avatar
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    I went the hotplate saw blade route too. It worked well for a while but soon the saw blade warped a lot and no longer gave a flat surface to rest the mold on. I got a 7 in dia, 1/2 in thick piece of aluminum, similar to Georger's, & it works perfectly so far. No warping. I may make a "garage " for it. My brass molds need to run about 350+ degrees, no way placing them on the pot will get them that hot.
    I use a temp probe in the mold to monitor mold temp.
    Bob
    Si hostes visibilis, etiam tu

  10. #30
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    I can see a visit in the near future to a scrap metal dealer for a piece of aluminum plate...

    Another theme I'm picking up on is digital monitoring and/or control. I've got that for the alloy (feeder and casting pots), and have been thinking about it for coating, but hadn't considered it for mold heating and monitoring.

    Amazing the technology available for our humble little hobby. Lots of potential for scientific controls to improve production and quality. It may not always be necessary, but it's nice to consider the possibilities.
    Last edited by kevin c; 01-27-2020 at 05:14 AM.

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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