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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
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    Over the Rainbow
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    92

    Default Used batteries= cast bullets Yes/No?

    Guys, would like some opinions on whether or not used lead-acid car batteris are a good source of scrap lead for casting bullets. I've heard of some who have used it with success and others that say not a good idea (lead oxide??). What is the general consensus? If it's a good source, any prep needed to the plates in order to eliminate the acid?? Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
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    UK, Ontario & Oregon
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    2,990

    Default

    I can't believe that anyone is REALLY that desperate for scrap lead?

    tac
    I am an international Gunboards patron

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Posts
    7,077

    Default

    Here are the details on why you should never use salvage lead acid battery lead for casting... it is seriously hazadrious and makes crappy bullets

    http://www.lasc.us/CastBulletAlloy.htm#recyclebatteries
    "people who count on luck don't last long in the business of defusing bombs and disarming land mines." Hunter Thompson

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
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    off the beaten path in Ky.
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    791

    Default

    An individual can't safely recover the lead from a car battery. I looked into it, as my cannon launches a 1.5lb. ball, and that can run your lead supply down fast. It takes a properly equipped facility to recycle the lead safely.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Location
    SW.Pa
    Posts
    1,144

    Default

    saw the terminals off and thats about all you want to mess with.
    If you find yourself in a fair fight, your tactics suck!

    LETS GO PENS !!!!!!!!!!!!!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Southeast Louisiana
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    15,746

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by RU shooter View Post
    saw the terminals off and thats about all you want to mess with.
    +1. Good advice.
    If a man has nothing greater to believe in than himself, he is a very lonely man.

    I reckon so. I guess we all died a little in that damn war.

    And in that time when men decide and feel safe to call the war insane, take one moment to embrace those gentle heroes you left behind.
    Quote Originally Posted by MEJ1990TM View Post
    Well, all right. Maybe just this once.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Scone, NSW. Australia
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    1,203

    Default

    Rock along to your nearest tyre service and do a con job for wheel weights.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Location
    Brisbane, Australia
    Posts
    5,197

    Default

    Don't even waste time with the terminals...Battery Lead contains Arsenic to harden it (Cheaper than Tin or Antimony).

    The Arsenic, on melting, will remain in the dross on the top of a lead pot...and will combine with atmospheric Moisture to form Arsine ( AsH3.) --a very toxic gas ( By respiration and cross skin absorption.)
    Other lead compounds in the Battery (Lead Sulfate) will release Sulphuric acid, etc, as they break down, which just ain't nice either...and all the various lead compound vapours jst aren't your friends.

    Why do you think most First World countries export their Lead Batteries to Third World recyclers....EPA and WHS-OHSA Rules. ( of the exporters).

    Regards,
    Doc AV

  9. #9

    Default

    A bit OT, but related.........I have a 5 gal bucket of mixed caliber lead cast projectiles. It sounds as though these are best suited for melting/reuse. Are these worth selling?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Over the Rainbow
    Posts
    92

    Default

    thanks all. That's pretty much what I thought. We just recently moved and found a couple of old batteries in the garage sans acid. I thought i read one or 2 guys here mention they'd used the plates out of batteries, so I thought I'd ask. I've done the trip around to most of the tire shops and with the exception of a few handfuls here and there, either they won't let me have them ("EPA regs won't let us...") or they keep them for themselves to do exactly what I'm doing. Next try will be to the range officer to see if he'll let me gather up spent bullets.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Martinsville, Indiana
    Posts
    283

    Default

    No! No! No! No! No!

    Do not use car batteries as sources of lead.

    Very bad idea.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Scone, NSW. Australia
    Posts
    1,203

    Default

    Go back to those tyre service outlets and offer cash, you might surprise yourself.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Southern New Hampshire
    Posts
    370

    Default

    Does you range currently have a recycling program running?

    A few years back we instituted a "berm cleanout" program (after much controversy)and never looked back.

    The first year was the worst as my club is at least 50 years old and the berms had never been scrubbed. heavy equipment was brought in to break up the berms and "sift" out all the spent projectiles (along with all the rocks, sticks, glass and who knows what else), the sifted dirt went back into the berms and the sifted debris was left for the club members to sort out.
    The stones and rocks were stockpiled for use in walkways and road improvement, they did not go back into the berms.
    If fresh material is needed for the berms we use "tailings" from a local quarry, it is free for the trucking and contains no stone.

    The recovered projectiles were sorted by type, all lead or jacketed.
    Originally we were filling 5 gal. pails but it was soon discovered that they are not up to the job of holding a full load of lead and that no one could move them!
    Club members were welcome to this material, with the stipulation that it was to be recast and not sold (on the honor system as this would be impossible to police).
    It still left us with a lot of reclaimed lead.
    When the price was good we sold off the reclaimed material, thereby adding to the clubs funds.
    It took more that a year to reclaim all the material from the first scrub.
    A couple of our members who cast their own also took to casting ingots for the club while doing their own casting, ingots bring more at the scrap yard than raw projectiles.


    We now have the program running on a 5 year cycle (we originally were doing every 2 years but discovered that the recovered material did not pay for the machine time).
    Because the berms were rebuilt with sifted dirt and tailings we can now use much smaller machines to scrub them and a manually operated sifter. we can do a berm in a weekend and get several hundred pounds of lead out of each berm.

    You might try setting up something along these lines and assure yourself of a never ending supply. It may also pay off your clubs "work requirement" if there is one.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    569

    Default

    Awile back, I read the more recent 'lead-acid' batteries have plates that aren't full plates - construction is different than in 'the old days'. They can also contain cadmium, which is a really toxic heavy metal. Friends don't let friends use battery lead.
    If you can find a house or building about to be torn down and get the owner's permission, old lead flashing from roof fittings is a good lead source. Solid soft lead.
    Tire weights are becoming more and more steel or zinc - harder to find good lead, but it's still there in places. I found a big lead wieght in the grocery parking lot last week and pocketed it - my first thought - "That's a good eight or ten bullets!"

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