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Blood lead levels

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by ggood, Feb 16, 2012.

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  1. ggood

    ggood Member

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    Have shot many thousands of rds the last few months in indoor range and also use tumbler to clean cases indoors.Got blood test results as 62 or 64 and wondering if I left lead trails in my car and home.Always washed my hands but not clothes and shoes. I am pretty upset by results of my stupidity as Ive been shooting 35 years.Now have to get my house checked for lead. What made me get tested was thread I read here on tumblers which I did not think about before. Can anyone make me feel better?
     
  2. 1KPerDay

    1KPerDay Member

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    Let us know what you find out about your house.

    I suppose there's no way of knowing what your lead levels were BEFORE you started shooting indoors? Or have you been tumbling/shooting indoors for many years?

    Start taking 1000 or 2000 mg of vitamin C per day, and don't shoot or handle lead for a month if you can help it. See what happens.
     
  3. ggood

    ggood Member

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    Tumbling for years shooting heavily indoors about 6 months-Thanks for info
     
  4. 1KPerDay

    1KPerDay Member

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    Is it a public range? have you been shooting lead or plated rounds?

    I need to get my blood tested as well.
     
  5. Rule3

    Rule3 Member

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    Primary source of exposure is inhalation most probably from the indoor shooting. Does your tumbler have a solid cover or one with slots? If it is slotted, tape it over with duct tape. Lots of lead in the primers. Change your media often.

    You do not absorb much lead through your skin, so washing your hands before eating, smoking etc will solve that.

    Best thing is to find a outside range, stop shooting for a while and see a Doctor.
    Lead accumulates and is hard to remove from the body.
     
  6. ggood

    ggood Member

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    Thanks,will do. DR says see him in 3 months for another test and stay away from lead for that much time. Tumbler is closed .I must open and dump contents into strainer and shake. Thats no good. Dust must go in my lungs and everywhere else
     
  7. ggood

    ggood Member

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    To answer 1KPerDays question-Range is operated by gun shop anyone can go as long as they pay. Mostly shoot lead
     
  8. gacajun

    gacajun Member

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    Make sure you dump the tumbler contents when you are outside and be upwind if the wind is blowing. Wear gloves...and have a mask on.
     
  9. ggood

    ggood Member

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    For the last 2 weeks I bought 1/2 face respitator special rated for lead and wore it to range . Also use gloves everytime I can. Thanks for info only I am a few years too late. I will take the advice for future and like I originally said I saw it here first and thats what reminded me of the risks as I once did know them.
     
  10. walt629

    walt629 Member

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    Good luck with it

    Okay. Let me premise this with "I know squat about reloading" but I do know a lot about containing air born particulates.

    I got to ask a couple of things.

    Where do you do your tumbling and what are you tumbling? If you're reloading set up is in the basement or the garage, getting rid of the air born particulates is easy. Go to your local big box hardware store and pick up an inexpensive kitchen out door venting range hood. Mount it over the work bench where your tumbler is. Get your self some lexan and attach it to the side lip of the hood on both the right and left side of the hood so that the lexan bottom edge is sitting on the bench and top edge is connected to the hood. Run a flex hose to the outside wall where you have already punched a hole and mounted a through the wall dryer vent. Or connect the hood to a shop vac that uses a HEPA filter to filter the exhaust air.

    You might also consider a wet tumbler. More expensive and not widely used in reloading I think, but you can pick up a small bench top wet tumbler from a hobby machine shop equipment supplier. Tumbling your brass wet will trap the dust that comes off it. Or you can get the closed dry type that has a lid to cover it and have a shop vac ready when you go to dump the tumbler.

    What are the numbers you're giving us? I found this article you might want to read from the CDC http://www.webmd.com/parenting/news/20050526/cdc-dangerous-blood-lead-levels-down. It pertains mainly to children but it brings up the home environment. How old is your home? What kind of paint are you exposed to?

    Some time ago I changed over to totally enclosed ammunition for use on the indoor range because of the lead issues. Shooting accurately with a dust mask on is kind of weird but you might want to consider it for the near future.

    Best of luck and I hope the DR. gives you some good news.
     
  11. ranger335v

    ranger335v Member

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    I sure don't KNOW how you got the lead up but I seriously doubt it was from tumbling, there is precious little lead in primers and only trace amounts remain in the case after firing so there simply isn't much to get into the tumbler media. And, considering all the gov. reg.s for ventalating indoor ranges it's unlikely shooting did it either.

    I suspect your elevated lead comes from another source.
     
  12. chhodge69

    chhodge69 Member

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    I always empty my tumbler outside and wear a dust mask. I don't wear gloves but I am maniacal about NOT touching my face and washing my hands after any time I handle any ammo or component.
     
  13. ggood

    ggood Member

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    thanks,you seem to be very handy .I cant put a nail into a board without bending it but I can shoot if the lead doesn't get me. I read that article and found it interesting as they said vitamin c and calcium were helpful, vitamin c was mentioned by .another member1KPerDay.All I can say is thanks for your help and being a new member to the forum I do appreciate all the time members put into trying to help another member.
     
  14. gahunter12

    gahunter12 Member

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    This is the main reason I have not switched to lead. It's worth the extra $40 to keep my kids safe. When I tumble I use dryer sheets and lay a dry rag then a wet rag over my tumbler. I have a hampster cage fan that sets at my shop door while tumbling if I'm in there with it. Is there a way to check lead levels in your reloading area?
     
  15. SHR970

    SHR970 Member

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    Deleted
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2012
  16. TexasShooter59

    TexasShooter59 Member

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    This and allergies is why I went straight to the stainless steel media (wet) tumbling when I began reloading a little over a year ago.

    My blood tested at 2 a couple of months ago; it was the first lead test for me. Did it out of curiosity.
     
  17. TexasShooter59

    TexasShooter59 Member

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    And I try to take a calcium tablet a while before going to the range.
     
  18. oldreloader

    oldreloader Member

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    I'm with ranger on this issue.
     
  19. jcwit

    jcwit Member

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    What gov. regs for ventalating indoor ranges?
     
  20. Slamfire

    Slamfire Member

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    I am beginning to think, based on ancedotal evidence like yours, that indoor ranges are toxic lead dumps. More and more people report high lead content in their blood after shooting in indoor ranges.

    This article is interesting.

    Go here to read it http://www.utexas.edu/safety/ehs/msds/lead.html

    I called the EPA lead hot line, looking for lead numbers. I wanted to know how much lead was in the air above lead casting pots, the lead mg/m3 in air from primers at a shooting range. Did not get that, instead they sent me this, which does not have measured data, etc.

     
  21. jcwit

    jcwit Member

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    Check out post # 23 at this link for info regarding lead vapors over the pot.

    http://castboolits.gunloads.com/showthread.php?t=143533&page=2
     
  22. XxBulletBendeRXx

    XxBulletBendeRXx Member

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    Great thread gentlemen. This information is greatly appreciated. I never gave it a thoguht about tracking lead into my home or vehicle after a day at the range. I mainly shoot outdoors, but that doesnt prevent the immediate area around me. I will be changing shoes and wearing and overgarment and designate a "only use at range hat" to take off before enertering the vehicle.
    B.B.
     
  23. Slamfire

    Slamfire Member

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    http://www.osha.gov/dts/osta/otm/otm_v/otm_v_3.html

    The current OSHA standard (29 CFR 1926.62) for lead exposure in construction has a permissible exposure limit (PEL) of 50 micrograms per cubic meter of air (50 µg/m3), measured as an 8-hour time-weighted average (TWA). As with all OSHA health standards, when the PEL is exceeded, the hierarchy of controls requires employers to institute feasible engineering and work practice controls as the primary means to reduce and maintain employee exposures to levels at or below the PEL. When all feasible engineering and work practice controls have been implemented but have proven inadequate to meet the PEL, employers must nonetheless implement these controls and must supplement them with appropriate respiratory protection. The employer also must ensure that employees wear the respiratory protection provided when it is required.

    I disagree with MTgun44 over lead content over casting pots. His analysis is not rigorous enough to take seriously.

    Spudgunr at castbooltis calculated, based on vapor pressure, the amount of lead in the air above a casting pot.

    http://castboolits.gunloads.com/showthread.php?t=75964


    But I wanted real time data over our 20 pound casting pots, not over industrial processes, such as measured in a 1969 report. To convert mg to microgram multiply by 1000.

    LeadConcentrationsoverleadpots.jpg

    LeadConcentrations.jpg

    I have not found measurements, either from Lyman, EPA.
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2012
  24. jcwit

    jcwit Member

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    I shoot indoors, outdoors, cast my own bullets indoors, tumble my brass indoors. I don't pay any attention to what shoes I wear or hat or gloves, I do not wear gloves of any kind when reloading. I've been doing this since the 60's. My lead #'s run 4 to 6 normally, I am tested now twice a year.

    I'm 68 and not going to worry about it.

    To the orginal OP you may also look into dishes you use. Those numbers seem awful high.
     
  25. zxcvbob

    zxcvbob Member

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    Got a reference for any of that?
     
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