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Thread: Lead hardness tester, homemade

  1. #1
    Boolit Master cheese1566's Avatar
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    Lead hardness tester, homemade

    My little shop attempt at a lead hardness tester.
    A little milling, turning, and powder coating.

    Now to make some various test bullets from known lead to make a reference chart.Click image for larger version. 

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    Last edited by cheese1566; 04-12-2021 at 07:00 PM.

  2. #2
    Boolit Master


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    Very nice!

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    W.R.Buchanan's Avatar
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    Simple design, should work just fine once you get it calibrated.

    Randy
    "It's not how well you do what you know how to do,,,It's how well you do what you DON'T know how to do!"
    www.buchananprecisionmachine.com

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by cheese1566 View Post
    My little shop attempt at a lead hardness tester.
    A little milling, turning, and powder coating.

    Now to make some various test bullets from known lead to make a reference chart.Click image for larger version. 

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Size:	76.8 KB 
ID:	281227
    Nice work.
    What units does the gauge measure?
    I am interested in how you would calibrate it.

    Perhaps use some pure lead (5 BHN) and use that as a reference?
    1A - 2A = -1A

  5. #5
    Boolit Master Scrounge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cheese1566 View Post
    My little shop attempt at a lead hardness tester.
    A little milling, turning, and powder coating.

    Now to make some various test bullets from known lead to make a reference chart.Click image for larger version. 

Name:	302C7B14-79F9-4233-A723-B2CD86690AE6.jpg 
Views:	63 
Size:	76.8 KB 
ID:	281227
    You sure you didn't buy that thing? It looks very professionally produced! Nice work! I'll be following your progress on this. I don't suppose I could beg a couple of close-ups and maybe a parts list? Drawings? Plans?

    Bill

  6. #6
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    W.R.Buchanan's Avatar
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    All the indicator does is give him a stopping point that insures that the same amount of force is put on the Penetrator every time.

    In other words you just turn the screw until the indicator reads Zero and then you measure the size of the dimple created by the Penetrator.

    The only variable is the hardness of the material you are testing.

    Randy
    "It's not how well you do what you know how to do,,,It's how well you do what you DON'T know how to do!"
    www.buchananprecisionmachine.com

  7. #7
    Boolit Master cheese1566's Avatar
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    It’s based off the style of the Cabine Tree tester. It’s made from basic 3/4”x2” steel stock and a harbor freight dial indicator. A 1/2” bolt holds the spring I found at a local hdwe store. The hand wheel was turned from aluminum as was the threaded pointer.
    Once the boolit is lightly touching the point, the dial is turned one complete turn. Then the dial measurement is made and recorded.
    I hade some soft clip on WW, 22LR range lead, clip on WW, and Linotype to make boolits for known references. Then I compared the Brinnel hardnesses from several resources (Cabine Tree/Saeco/LASC website/Lyman books to make a reference chart and graph. In the future I’ll make more measurements of the aged WW and quenched WW boolits form more data.
    Last edited by cheese1566; 04-18-2021 at 11:43 PM.

  8. #8
    Boolit Buddy
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    Quote Originally Posted by cheese1566 View Post
    It’s based off the style of the Cabine Tree tester. It’s made from basic 3/4”x2” steel stock and a harbor freight dial indicator. A 1/2” bolt holds the spring I found at a local hdwe store. The hand wheel was turned from aluminum as was the threaded pointer.
    Once the boolit is lightly touching the point, the dial is turned one complete turn. Then the dial measurement is made and recorded.
    I hade some soft clip on WW, 22LR range lead, clip on WW, and Linotype to make boolits for known references. Then I compared the Brinnel hardnesses from several resources (Cabine Tree/Saeco/LASC website/Lyman books to make a reference chart and graph. In the future I’ll make more measurements of the aged WW and quenched WW boolits form more data.
    Thanks for your explanation.
    1A - 2A = -1A

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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