In a word NO! There are many other metals in the battery that are VERY deadly when melting. All these do gooders keep screaming about lead poisoning, thats nothing compared to what else is in there.
And yes I firmly believe this lead scare is WAY OVERBLOWN.
December 20, 2009, 07:05 PM
It is certainly possible, but a very bad idea. You can cut the lead terminals off the outside of the battery without issue.
It is getting harder to secure scrap (read free) lead these days. Even when I can get some from a tire store these days, there is getting to be a higher percentage of zinc and steel WWs that must be culled out.
Be sure to let your friends and coworkers know you're looking for scrap lead. It amazed me how many guys had a bucket of wheel weights or other scrap lead in their garage sitting around that they never got around to doing anything with. I scored over 200 lbs this way before I even purchased my casting equipment.
December 20, 2009, 08:07 PM
Don't do it.
December 20, 2009, 08:21 PM
This topic comes up regularly here.
Perhaps a search (http://www.google.com/search?sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8&q=battery+lead+site:thehighroad.org) next time?
December 20, 2009, 08:24 PM
Lead / Acid batteries contain Sulfuric Acid which becomes a Hazardous Waste regulated by the EPA or your local environmental protection department. Proper management and disposal is required and by the time you got the necessary safety gear, environmental training, and necessary permits you could buy enough scrap lead from a dealer to keep you in boolits for a long, long time. You may get away with breaking a battery or two but eventually you will get caught and fined, if you do not suffer acid burns first.
Obviously I strongly recomment against it but if you do please wear indirect venting chemical goggles and a face sheild.
December 20, 2009, 08:35 PM
I have hundreds of pounds of lead harvested from Lead Acid batteries. No problem. Lot's of ventilation.
December 21, 2009, 01:28 AM
Most modern batteries have very little actual lead in them. MOst of it is bound up in the oxide pastes on the plates, which are very thin. I can get $5-$8 apiece for scrap batteries, imho, I would do that and use the money to buy some wheelweights from a tire shop or scrap lead from a recycling place.
Some of the compounds in a maintenance free battery will form not just toxic but outright poisonous fumes when heated. Then what do you do with the acid and the plastic and all the non-reducable paste you can't flux in? Can't just toss it in the woods or your neighborhood trash can.
Seriously, not worth the effort.
December 21, 2009, 01:40 AM
If you don't mind standing around a pot of molten lead that is giving off various highly toxic poisonous gases, and you don't mind dealing with dross contaminated with nice things like lead sulfates, cadmium and arsenic, I don't see a problem. http://i227.photobucket.com/albums/dd7/rkba2da/smileys/freak.gif
I almost forgot to mention that the hobbyist cancer patients who have ignored the warnings, and melted car batteries anyway, almost always mention that it was a WHOLE LOT OF WORK for a surprisingly small amount of lead. IIRC, one guy said he melted four batteries and ended up with only half a coffee can of lead.
December 21, 2009, 04:47 AM
I can get $5-$8 apiece for scrap batteries, imho, I would do that and use the money to buy some wheelweights from a tire shop or scrap lead from a recycling place.
December 21, 2009, 11:38 AM
I can understand the thought crossing someone's mind, but to seriously consider it. Hacking through a car battery to salvage lead?? This should be a movie staring Keanu Reeves called Lead It Be.
December 21, 2009, 12:03 PM
The biggest joke of all is we send all our echo friendly recycled batteries to China and they resmelt them, discharging all the crap we thought we were preventing back into the atmosphere and then resell the lead to us.
December 21, 2009, 12:38 PM
Bullet Lead-Manufacturing Process
Lead used in the bullet-manufacturing process is generally obtained from secondary lead smelters where the raw material is made primarily of recycled automobile batteries. Under stringent environmental regulations, these smelters separate the batteries into plastic, acid, and lead components. http://www.fbi.gov/hq/lab/fsc/backissu/july2002/peters.htm I tried it, not worth the trouble.
December 23, 2009, 12:22 AM
I work with car batteries every day (auto mechanic), I wouldn't mess with it. There's a lot of nasty stuff in there, like 60% sulfuric acid, lead oxides, and various other heavy metals. Even that sulfuric acid alone can eat through stuff, BTDT. I'd take the advice of the other poster above, sell the batteries for scrap and use that to buy lead. I would like to know where he sells batteries though, I can't get more than $2 around here.
Wheel weights made of lead are becoming a thing of the past too. I'm not 100% but I think I heard of some new Federal Mandate saying that all lead wheel weights must not be used past 2011. My shop switched over to iron weights, and tungsten is looking like the new material of choice. Sucks for the casters... go figure.
December 23, 2009, 12:30 AM
I was reading an article yesterday about ammo availability. The writer mentioned that bullet casters used to get alot of their lead from used batteries, but now those batteries are going to china, as someone already mentioned.
December 23, 2009, 12:31 AM
It aint worth it.
The lead is junk and not desired for casting bullets. Period.
Way to much other junk metal in there. The issues that will come with trying to get it out are way to costly and the better idea is that the battery is worth more at the scrap yard now. With that money you can buy more good lead than you can get from that battery.
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