View Full Version : Lead Question

December 9, 2009, 06:45 AM

I recently came accross about 150# of lead from an old time and now passed on reloader. It is already molded into 1# ingots. I have no clue if the lead is lead or already in an alloy, is there a way to test it? Is there any problems with just shooting straight lead and not making and alloy cast? So far, all I have used it for is making 2-4oz pyramid and bank sinkers for surf fishing.



December 9, 2009, 08:31 AM
This is not the most scientific way to test, But if you can scratch it with your thumb nail. Its pure lead. If not. Its got Alloys in it. And then with out a lead tester. Your guess would be as good as mine. If you find its harder than pure lead. And want it tested. PM me and if you want to send me a bullet size piece. I will put it in my tester

December 9, 2009, 08:38 AM
This old reloader...did he shoot blackpowder guns? Then it may be pure lead and soft. If no black powder then it's probably good to use as is.

If it leads your guns, it still might not be the hardness of the lead. Even hard cast will sometimes lead if it's not sized right.

As unscientific as this sounds...I have been able to tell by looking at it if it is pure lead or WW's. Lead oxidizes faster and darker than plain WW's.

December 9, 2009, 08:50 AM
As Edward said,. The lead or hardness are not the only things to take into consideration. And its hard to Tell someones. Experience with casting in a simple post. If you are new to it. I would strongly recommend you get a copy of Lyman or RCBS. Cast bullet Manuals. Both are excellent for beginners. And both are loaded with cast loads.

December 10, 2009, 06:36 AM
Thanks for the info. I am almost sure that it is pure or close to pure lead as the ingots are pretty soft. I can lightly scratch the surface with my fingernail. I have not tried to cast bullets, yet, but was thinking about giving it a try. I am pretty new to reloading, I have pressed out about 1,000 rounds so far for .45acp and .38sp all with purchased bullets.

I think for right now I will keep buying cast bullets (500 for $30.00) and saving the lead for fishing sinkers since the price for the larger 4oz+ sinkers just keeps going up. But I have enough lead, I think I will have plenty for the future should I decide to cast my own, which might be the case with my .45colt.

Thanks again,


December 10, 2009, 12:28 PM
cast them and shoot them :D