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Thread: Range scrap Dross

  1. #1
    Boolit Mold
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    Jun 2016
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    Southwest Pa
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    Range scrap Dross

    Range scrap leftovers taken to scrap yard. I used to get red brass price. Now they say it still has traces of lead in it and only pay 1/4 price. Everything's the same as before.(It's the only place in the area that takes it, and I'm starting to think they are just being greedy) Anybody Out there crafty enough to make an inexpensive cast iron crucible for melting the jackets into Ingots? Would it be worth the hassle to do it? I usually end up with 3 or 4 5 gallon buckets per month. Building a small foundry isn't a problem, nor is getting the temperature needed to do the job. I could get a better price elsewhere for the Ingots (Bypassing the scrapyard). But before I go thru all that, Do you guys do anything to clean this up, other than sift the fine stuff out and run it thru a sort of wet tumble like the brass cases?

  2. #2
    Boolit Master
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    You will be releasing gaseous lead and zinc at those trmps.
    QUIS CUSTODIET IPSOS CUSTODES?

  3. #3
    Boolit Buddy Tazlaw's Avatar
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    Dec 2019
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    I’m interested in knowing what to do with the scrap. Just starting out smelting range lead.
    Just knowing enough to do it, is not enough to do it right! -Taz

  4. #4
    Boolit Master

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    Sure, smelting the copper jackets can be a potentially hazardous pain, it can be done. A simple foundry is not a problem, lots of youtube videos on the subject. It would seem the problem might be for cleaning the jackets. Think, you are already smelting the lead out and dealing with the crap left over. In my experience, you should be able to rinse the copper as the crud has already been freed up for the most part. Sift, rinse with an acidic wash (vinegar, lemon juice) and rinse clean. You want that stuff dry before smelting of course. Angle Iron or steel ingot molds should be good enough, I would have to check further on cast iron ingot molds regarding temperatures before considering that. I gave a bunch of split brass to a 'blacksmith' buddy, he was making medieval armor from scratch with brass accents. He didn't have a problem working copper or brass. Give it a shot!
    Common sense Gun Safety . . .

    Is taught at the Range!

  5. #5
    Boolit Master
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    I have always been able to sell the copper jackets from range scrap as #2 copper.

  6. #6
    Boolit Grand Master

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    They will come out pretty clean if you flux an extra time. Scoop them up with a skimmer and shake them well.

  7. #7
    Moderator



    JonB_in_Glencoe's Avatar
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    Sometimes it's just the day.
    Scrap yards may be willing to pay something one day, and NOT willing the next.

    I would do as lightman suggests, flux the spent jackets another time or two, until you don't see any Lead alloy. I wouldn't think any tumble cleaning would be necessary. Oh yeah, use a magnet to get out any steel, they will ding your price if they find any steel.
    Then bring them back to the same scrap yard another day in the future.
    Good Luck.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    “If someone has a gun and is trying to kill you, it would be reasonable to shoot back with your own gun.”
    ― The Dalai Lama, Seattle Times, May 2001

  8. #8
    Boolit Mold
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    Jun 2016
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    I use a small basket like from a French fry fryer to remove jackets and shake them well. Then they get a second melt by themselves to get anything missed (usually very little) . It just doesn't have that bright look. I've sifted it rinsed it then rolled it around the yard in a bucket. with Dawn detergent, lemishine an water. (Mixture is proper, Brass cases done this way are great ) then rinsed again.

  9. #9
    Boolit Buddy
    Join Date
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    A tablespoon of citric acid from a bee keepers store would likely put a shine on jackets, but I'd be leary of what's in the waste water and where to dispose of it. Maybe just let it evaporate off and deal with what's left.

  10. #10
    Boolit Buddy
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    What about tumbling the jackets in ss pins to brighten them up? They would have a hard time telling you its dirty.

    If you are going to make copper ingots id sell them to a chrome plating shop. Isnt one of the layers copper? Or cast into an shape a machinist could use...there is bound to be a someone looking for blocks of copper and willing to pay more than scrap prices.

  11. #11
    Boolit Mold
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    I was thinking in the same direction of machine shops. The SS pins might be a bit of a final sorting pain even with a magnet. as some get caught or tangled up in the jackets, but making ingots would clean up and bring junk to top to scoop off. Just wondering if the extra time and work would be worthwhile.

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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
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HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
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