View Full Version : mass melting setups

February 5, 2010, 03:00 PM
i saw through a link sum good melting setups. made me jealous. anyone have some good and more importantly CHEAP ideas for a good setup...

currently i just through some wood in a pile light it up fill up an old dutch oven with ww's and wait for em to melt then with a laddle fill up a muffin pan...

cavemanish? definately. works thus far but it makes for an all day event... perhaps some cost can be afforded for convenience.

thanks for the input!!!

February 5, 2010, 03:28 PM
I use a big cast iron pot and trukey fryer stand (propane).

February 6, 2010, 12:08 AM
I do all my WW melting in a small dutch over on a coleman single-burner camp stove run on propane. Works good. Stove was $20 at wally-world and propane bottles are about $5 each. Slightly less cavemanish, and cheap.

February 6, 2010, 12:46 AM
I use a cast iron fish fryer I bought on sale at Cabela's.

Fish Cookers (http://www.cabelas.com/cabelas/en/templates/links/link.jsp?id=0063664517078a&type=product&cmCat=SEARCH_all&returnPage=search-results1.jsp&Ntk=Products&QueryText=fish+fryer&sort=all&Go.y=0&N=0&Nty=1&hasJS=true&_dyncharset=ISO-8859-1&_DARGS=%2Fcabelas%2Fen%2Fcommon%2Fsearch%2Fsearch-box.jsp.form23&Go.x=0)

It has proved to be very durable and well suited to the task of supporting the weight of a kettle full of lead. Even at full price it runs only $100. You should be able to find something similar at a local store.

One strong word of advice. NEVER EVER USE AN ALUMINUM POT TO DO YOUR SMELTING. The aluminum pots loose their strength at the high temperatures that you smelt lead at. Aluminum works for fryers where the temperature doesn't climb above 400F. When smelting, you are near the slump temp for aluminum AND it is trying to contain a much heavier/denser material.

Aluminum pots used for smelting can and will fail catastrophically. When they do it will be with little or no warning. There is nothing you can do except run like hell if the pot starts to slump. I'll spend the extra $30-50 and get something made of the proper material. I tried using some beefy aluminum measuring cups for scooping/stiring material, but even for those small tasks they slumped and became useless/dangerous. I bought some stainless steel ones and have been using them ever since.

Aluminum does lots of things well. Smelting lead is not one of them. Smelting lead in an aluminum pot is like boiling water in a paper cup. Technically possible, but a very bad idea.