Lead Ingots-Help me Help you


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wstoldt
March 28, 2013, 04:57 PM
Hello again from Brass by Bill LLC! We received such great feedback from this board again we decided to give it another shot.

We are making a deal for around 16,000 lbs of lead a year. This will be reclaimed lead from an indoor range.

We are looking into expanding our business to include lead ingots. We would like to ask the following:

1. What is the going rate for lead ingots shipped that you would be willing to pay?

2. How much do you tend to buy at a time?

3. How do you normally receive any ingots that you buy on the internet?

4. Any other info you would see as good to know? (not "its dirty" or "be careful" as we already realize this warning and thank you for thinking of us)

Thanks again for the business and help!

Bill Stoldt
Brass by Bill LLC

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Certaindeaf
March 28, 2013, 05:24 PM
Probably a buck a pound in clean three or so pound ingots. And then whatever the USPS charges for their flat rate boxes for shipping.

Fryerpower
March 28, 2013, 05:54 PM
Set up your ingot size and dimensions around the flat rate boxes. If it fits, it ships!

wstoldt
March 28, 2013, 06:04 PM
Thanks for the feedback so far. I was thinking a ticket price of 1.25/lb in ingot mold. Seem fair?

Bill

Magnum Shooter
March 28, 2013, 06:10 PM
1) $ 1.25/lb shipped max.
2) 50-60 lbs at a time
3) USPS flat rate box, Postman hates me
4) reinforce inside box corners/edges with shipping tape

kelbro
March 28, 2013, 06:12 PM
Wheelweight lead, cleaned, and in ingots goes for $1 per pound shipped. I would not pay as much for range scrap as it's a little softer but that's just me.

Magnum Shooter
March 28, 2013, 06:13 PM
Thanks for the feedback so far. I was thinking a ticket price of 1.25/lb in ingot mold. Seem fair?

Yes, When do you start shipping?

Canuck-IL
March 28, 2013, 06:20 PM
Not only must the corners be heavily reinforced but the contents must not be able to shift. In 50+ USPS heavy pkgs shipped to or by me, the only losses were in those that had shifting contents - and then of course, really annoyed, careless postal workers don't always gather all the spilled pieces back up for eventual delivery. 2 Priority deliveries to me just went permanently missing - shipper didn't bother with the inexpensive Delivery Confirmation. Those Confirmations are not a guarantee of correct delivery but they vastly improve the odds.

Crushed heavy paper sheets or stout bubble wrap above, below and around contents which should be in 1 or 2 Tyvek bags - then reinforce the corners. Those USPS boxes are just not meant for materials of the density of bulk lead or 230gr FMJs.
/B

Reefinmike
March 28, 2013, 06:41 PM
will this be soft range lead from jacketed bullets(almost pure lead) or a known and proper alloy containing tin and antimony? Pure lead I could see people paying 75 cents or so a pound. ready to cast- $1.25 is fair.

For my purposes, If I werent getting a bucket of free wheel weights each month I would simply just pay for cast bullets locally. Sure I could cast my own for about $15 cheaper per 500, but Id rather just pay someone to do it for me at that price point.

as fryerpower mentioned, square ingot molds catered to the dimensions of flat rate boxes would be optimal. Or you can just fill the boxes with molten lead, let it cool tape it shut and send it off as a solid brick :) haha. Ive found that atleast moderate amounts of molten lead wont burn cardboard.

floydster
March 28, 2013, 06:46 PM
I wouldn't go over a dollar a pound shipped, to me it's just not worth it.

Over that price, I will just buy my cast bullets---just sayin.

Smokeyloads

Duckdog
March 28, 2013, 06:52 PM
I would agree that $1 a pound is pretty fair. If it is cleaned, like it sounds like it wil be, I would definitely buys some for that.

zxcvbob
March 28, 2013, 06:56 PM
Think outside the box a little: (pardon the pun)

a 9 x 14 x 0.5" ingot would weight 25 pounds and fit in a flat rate legal envelope without needing any extra packing. :D Current postage is $5.75, and USPS provides the free envelopes.

I think you could also put almost 25 pounds in a small flat rate box ($5.80) if it was in three 3 x 5 x 1.5" ingots.

1KPerDay
March 28, 2013, 07:12 PM
Make sure you reinforce the box and double tape all seams and corners.

Box within a box would be even better.

$1/lb shipped, max, IMO.

angus6
March 28, 2013, 07:19 PM
Think outside the box a little: (pardon the pun)

a 9 x 14 x 0.5" ingot would weight 25 pounds and fit in a flat rate legal envelope without needing any extra packing. Current postage is $5.75, and USPS provides the free envelopes.

I think you could also put almost 25 pounds in a small flat rate box ($5.80) if it was in three 3 x 5 x 1.5" ingots.

Some good ideas there ^

As others have said $1.00 pound max, can be found fairly easy at that price shipped

armoredman
March 28, 2013, 07:22 PM
I haven't bought lead in a while but I may need some soon. Dead soft lead, like what's inside jacketed bullets, really doesn't do much for me - wheel weight is the softest I'd like to go. I'd need a Brinell hardness rating on the finished products - I don't have a Brinell tester here.
For GOOD lead, yes, $1.25 shipped would be fair.

lightman
March 28, 2013, 07:34 PM
I would suggest that you Google a site called "castboolits" and check it out. As you probably would guess, its about casting bullets, and there are several people there that sell lead. There is a lot of info about shipping, alloys, smelting lead, price, ect.

As ingots go, it would be better for the buyer if they would fit a melting pot. Long and thin would be better than some of the round ones that I see cast in muffin tins and such.

As price goes, $1.25 is a little high for unknown alloy. Roto Metals has known alloy for a little more than that. Lightman

armoredman
March 28, 2013, 08:12 PM
That's castboolits.gunloads.com. Great site.

ASCTLC
March 28, 2013, 09:37 PM
If I knew I could get a reasonable amount at a reasonable price to warrant the investment in casting, sizing, and lubing equipment I'd jump in with a sizable purchase (I'm geeky like that :))

If it's not already alloyed castable lead at about $1/lb I'll stick with an already cast product (once I find a mfr that I can trust and like) and save my time for all the other crap my boss and wife makes me do ;)

Andy

rondog
March 28, 2013, 09:42 PM
I've seen a seller (eBay, I think) that makes wood boxes that fits inside the Large FR Box, then packs it full of ingots.

GCBurner
March 28, 2013, 10:34 PM
The going rate on eBay seems to be about $1 per pound for reclaimed range lead in one pound ingots, shipped with USPS Flat Rate shipping.

35 Whelen
March 29, 2013, 05:42 AM
wheelweight lead, cleaned, and in ingots goes for $1 per pound shipped. I would not pay as much for range scrap as it's a little softer but that's just me.

Where?!?!? Where are you guys finding WW's for $1 per lb. shipped? Also, Rotometals cheapest alloy (alloy, not lead), is almost $3 per lb. in 200+ lb. lots.

blarby
March 29, 2013, 06:49 AM
I would suggest my choice in shipping for large flat rate boxes filled with lead :

Fill it with small flat rate boxes. It so ridgid when you stand them end to end in the large flat rate, even the USPS cant bust these.

Personally, I would not pay more than $1.00 per # for cleaned and ingotized wheel weights... I would pay considerably less for allegedly "pure", or some sort of weird unknown hardness or composition such as that found in bulk range lead.... You never know what you are gonna get.


If you can get some sort of guaranteed hardness, at a fair price shipped- I'd be happy to buy a box, and provide an honest and fair review here of the entire process from buying- receiving, opening, and inspecting contents. I can verify hardness, and would love to do what I can to promote those who come here for help, advice, conversation AND commerce- not just commerce.

With that said- we don't see ya often ! There is a commercial section now- you might get better advice posting it there. Dunno.

zxcvbob
March 29, 2013, 11:27 AM
I wouldn't pay over $1 (shipped) for ingots of scrap lead (especially wheel weight lead from an unknown source), even though I know it's worth more than that. So I don't see where there's much business opportunity supplying a product people are skeptical about or always want on the cheap.

There's a risk (no offense) that the guy melting them down mixed in some zinc or something and the lead is not usable for anything but cannon balls or sailboat ballast. And a risk that the box will be destroyed or lost in shipping and hard to get replaced.

Good luck; I hope you can make it work.

twofifty
March 29, 2013, 11:50 AM
It's already been mentioned but bears repeating. If you grade stamp each ingot by Brinell #, then your customers will know that you have control of your process.

Grades will vary as your recycling sources vary, but customers will then know what they're buying and what other alloys they need to have on hand for their particular application.

Or better yet, you mix the alloys at the factory to create different product hardnesses. Price accordingly.

zxcvbob
March 29, 2013, 01:18 PM
People get too hung-up on lead hardness. Bullet fit and decent lube are more important. Hardness is third, maybe. You wouldn't want to use pure lead in a .30 rifle bullet or a full-powered .357 Magnum. But you wouldn't use linotype in a .38 Special or a blackpowder gun either. Anything between these extremes is probably usable.

Reclaimed lead from an indoor range makes very good bullets (at least from my range), without adding any tin or antimony. It almost looks like pure lead, except it's harder and doesn't tarnish. I don't know what the alloy is; it's mostly from .22LR bullets with a little jacketed and copper-plated mixed in. It's not as hard as wheel weights, but you don't need that for most pistol bullet casting.

silicosys4
March 29, 2013, 01:41 PM
For me to want to pay to ship range lead of unknown alloy, it would have to be less than $1/lb. I can get unknown lead alloys from multiple recycling shops around town for $.50/lb, and lead of known alloy for $.40/lb for sorted wheel weights, to $.75/lb for soft lead roofing flashing. If you could guarantee your alloy percentages, I would imagine it would be worth more money. It sounds like you cannot, so the next best thing to me would be a guaranteed BHN number with each lot of ingots.

silicosys4
March 29, 2013, 01:46 PM
Where?!?!? Where are you guys finding WW's for $1 per lb. shipped? Also, Rotometals cheapest alloy (alloy, not lead), is almost $3 per lb. in 200+ lb. lots.

Used to be Ebay before the panic, using flat rate shipping boxes. I'd suggest looking for recycling stations around where you live, they could very likely have a pile in the corner. I was able to talk down my recycling station's lead price on wheel weights by arguing that $1/lb was ridiculous for an impure alloy that was chock full of lesser value steel clips. On Ebay, I looked for wheel weights themselves, but if you want them you can find auctions for presmelted ingots of wheel weight lead. Danger though, those can be of unknown alloy.
Search "wheel weights" , "casting lead", or "scrap lead" to find them

Certaindeaf
March 29, 2013, 01:48 PM
How are you going to smelt it? Do you already have a honking smelter? As to ingot size, over at castboolits a lot of guys use "V" channel steel of various lengths.. it nests well inside USPS boxes.. measure the boxes to maximize/optimize ingot size/shape. good luck

35 Whelen
March 29, 2013, 02:18 PM
Used to be Ebay before the panic, using flat rate shipping boxes. I'd suggest looking for recycling stations around where you live, they could very likely have a pile in the corner. I was able to talk down my recycling station's lead price on wheel weights by arguing that $1/lb was ridiculous for an impure alloy that was chock full of lesser value steel clips. On Ebay, I looked for wheel weights themselves, but if you want them you can find auctions for presmelted ingots of wheel weight lead. Danger though, those can be of unknown alloy.
Search "wheel weights" , "casting lead", or "scrap lead" to find them

I know well that it USED to be on eBay, but it is no more. Ingotized WW's are bringing at least $1.50 shipped. I manage to keep quite a bit of lead around, but I shoot so much, that I'm always looking for more.

Certaindeaf
March 29, 2013, 02:59 PM
Just make sure to pour some lead into some beer cans. a lot of people have cannon in that/for that size.. but then again, most use concrete
lolz

Dr_B
March 29, 2013, 03:18 PM
I'd like to buy some ingots. Send me a PM.

stevehenry1
March 31, 2013, 04:17 AM
Canuck-IL- It isn't "lazy" postal workers- The facility I used to work in was HUGE (5+ acres under roof}, and when bullets broke open the machinery would spread them all over the building. They fall deep into the sorting machines, and management is raising hell to get the machines started again. They will still be finding bullets and those blasted state quarter s until they scrap the machines and tear down the building.

Searcher4851
April 4, 2013, 11:38 AM
Bill-
In response to your questions:

1. I've paid up to $1.00 per pound shipped. (I just barter for lead when I can though)

2. Over the internet, 50# lots are easily shipped through USPS. Depends how it's cast and packed. If you were to custom cast ingots sized to pack well in standard USPS flat rate boxes, you could up that. USPS seems to be the most economical, using the flat rate boxes.

3. see # 2.

Good luck in your new undertaking. Perhaps we can do some business in the future.

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