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Old April 9, 2014, 06:02 PM   #1
nemesiss45
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scrap typesetting alloy

I was at my dads today, and was talking casting with him. I have some WWs and range lead I collected to melt. he gave me a spare seaco electric pot to melt lead for ingots, then directed me to a stack of cans full of "linotype" to melt into the WWs to harden the alloy up. I filled a 50 cal ammo can and headed home. now I was tossing chunks into the pot and I was eyeing the linoytpe, and I suspect there may be mixed alloys in there. there are some soft flexible strips, some hard clean edged chunks, and lots of small single letter typesetting pieces. I tried bending one and it snapped in half. if this normal for linotype? I assumed linotype would bend like lead, but I have never worked with it. I am concerned something else might have made its way into that box.

a google search tells me typesetting alloy comes in a few forms, but is all lead tin and antimony (and one type may contain a little copper)... but I'm still curious if anyone on here has used thistype of alloy as source metal.

thanks
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Old April 9, 2014, 06:28 PM   #2
GP100man
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Yep the lino will snap ,the spacers are of softer alloy.

They usually reused the lino until it would`nt cast crisp letters (losing alloys as it was remelted & fluxed) then cast the spacers from that.

I melt my snapping lino & pour it into the biggest mold I have , then add the nuggets of goodness that way.

BUT even the spacers may be hi in tin, it won`t snap like lino.

Hope this helps.
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Old April 9, 2014, 07:14 PM   #3
nemesiss45
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awesome, thank you. that is what I was hoping to hear.
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Old April 9, 2014, 08:05 PM   #4
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Man, I wish my dad was a caster. All he does is hook to his boat and goes fishing with one of his retired buddies..... every day.

People gotta learn to live in their retirement. He's just wasting it!
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Old April 9, 2014, 09:13 PM   #5
nemesiss45
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lol,

My dad retired last year, but fishing is the last thing on his mind. He is kind of a renaissance man. He draws, paints, scuplts, makes wine and beer, shoots, reloads, and restores military vehicles (mostly old jeeps) he is on his 5th or 6th jeep right now. He pretty much learns to do anything he puts his mind to.
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Old April 10, 2014, 11:17 PM   #6
iraiam
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Yes

I have a large supply of Linotype lead I acquired from a bankruptcy auction at a check printing plant some years ago.

I mix the Linotype with pure lead at 50/50 and get a pretty descent hardball bullet alloy with roughly 92% lead, 6% Antimony, 2% Tin. The Brinell hardness is around 15-16, the current batch I'm going through tested at 16.3 Brinell with the proper weight bullet, which I figured was close enough.

I do get a little variance in my alloy, I assume because the Linotype was of various ages when I cast it all into ingots, possibly some mono in there as well, the 50/50 mix has resulted in a good alloy through many 20 lb. batches.
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Last edited by iraiam; April 10, 2014 at 11:24 PM.
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Old April 11, 2014, 01:21 AM   #7
nemesiss45
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That is what I am planning to do. I have done one batch so far. I need to figure out the idiosyncrasies of my dad's hardness tester to see where I'm at though.
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