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Making case lube, but I can't dissolve all the lanolin. What to do?

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by IMtheNRA, Dec 11, 2018.

  1. IMtheNRA

    IMtheNRA Member

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    I used a 12 fluid ounce bottle of "red" Heet and 2 very full tablespoons of 100 per cent pure lanolin. Turns out, the lanolin I got is not liquid, like I saw in youtube videos - it is more like a wax.

    Anyway, I've been shaking and shaking this mixture and about a quarter of the lanolin still hasn't dissolved in the alcohol. It just accumulates at the bottom, looking like a layer of scummy white sediment in a bottle of pale yellow liquid. It has been almost 24 hours since I combined the two ingredients.

    What's going on here? Did I exceed the amount of lanolin that can dissolve in 12 ounces of alcohol or should I give it a few more days? Should I try heating up the mixture in a hot water bath?
     
  2. 9mmepiphany

    9mmepiphany Moderator

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    A common ration is 12:1 alcohol to lanolin. So for a 12oz bottle of Heet, I would have mixed with 1oz of lanolin.

    What you need to do is melt the lanolin before adding the alcohol. Letting it sit won't help them mix
     
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2018
    cheygriz likes this.
  3. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    Yep, I used hot water to do it. Got the bottle a bit too hot.

    Warmed up Lanolin
    4 Oz Liquid Lanolin.jpg

    99% Iso and warm Lanolin before shaking.
    16 Oz 99% Iso in Spray Bottle - Lanolin Poured In.jpg

    99% Iso and warm Lanolin after shaking.
    16 Oz 99% Iso in Spray Bottle - Lanolin Mixed In.jpg
     
  4. FROGO207

    FROGO207 Member

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    You take the mixture and on an electric range or hot plate, heat it in a double boiler arrangement just enough to get it to dissolve. Low heat to avoid the mix catching fire. You have to use the liquid lanolin as well. Note if it sits a long time it will need to be shaken up some before use as well. I am going to try using wire pulling lube instead when I run out of this current batch. I think this will not need heating.
     
  5. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    That is where I skipped a step and tried to melt my Lanolin bottle. :D
     
  6. FROGO207

    FROGO207 Member

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    I actually pour the mix together in the inside container first and then heat it. Stir until dissolved. Cool and use. Heat and mix it quickly or a good amount of the alcohol will evaporate.
     
  7. IMtheNRA

    IMtheNRA Member

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    So, am I the only one to use the wax-like lanolin and you all used liquid?
     
  8. RandyP

    RandyP Member

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    Probably not the only one. but figure that most all DIY case lube starts with the liquid lanolin and 99% isopropyl. Easy to find on Amazon
     
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  9. 9mmepiphany

    9mmepiphany Moderator

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    I've never seen the wax type lanolin
     
  10. berettaprofessor

    berettaprofessor Member

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    It would make me extremely nervous to heat 99% alcohol. Store-bought reloading lubes aren’t that expensive and are a very minor cost of reloading. Sometimes we get a little too cost-conscious for our own good, I think. Yes, my reloads might cost 14.06 cents rather than 14.0.

    But in the apocalypse, I’m happy to know it might be a solution.
     
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  11. edwardware

    edwardware Member

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    Guessing here, but if your lanolin came as a solid, the undissolved portion is probably the long-chain (high molecular weight) fraction, undissolved and too heavy to suspend in alcohol. Liquid lanolin is fractionated (ie distilled) to remove this part.

    In the end, I'll bet it doesn't matter. Lube, and be merry.
     
  12. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    "Liquid" Lanolin is very thick, has to be heated to pour, not quite like wax, but very thick.

    Do they make a wax type?
     
  13. Rule3

    Rule3 Member

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    As with any "mixture" of "anything" there is only so much of compound X that will dissolve, or go into solution with compound Y

    You probably just have too much lanolin.

    I also agree or disagree with heating a flammable liquid on the stove?

    Why folks go through the hassle of mixing all this crap up is beyond me. There are other products out there that are CHEAP and work just as well.
    But then there are those that wash brass in the kitchen sink and dry it in the kitchen oven?

    Guess some folks have tons of brass to lube.

    Wire pulling lube from Homer Depot works great as does the Lee lube, mix a small amount in regular rubbing alcohol and you are all set.
    But this has been hashed over and over,
     
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  14. doubleh

    doubleh Member

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    This has been an interesting thread. It helps me remember why I buy it already mixed.
     
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  15. Laphroaig

    Laphroaig Member

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    It's called Anhydrous Lanolin. I've used it as a lube for swaging 22 cases into .224 jackets like Imperial wax. Great lubrication properties under high pressures.
     
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  16. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    Cool. This is what I bought. "Liquid", but very thick. How much thicker is the Anhydrous Lanolin?
     
  17. cheygriz

    cheygriz Member

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    Now-a-days, I don't bother making home brew cheap stuff.

    A couple of bottles of Dillon spray lube is not expensive and lasts a long time.:)
     
  18. AR-Bossman

    AR-Bossman Member

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    Just drop the bottle in a pot of warm water... even hot tap water will do and agitate it. People are talking like we are using a propane torch.

    For me, the lanolin didn't stay in suspension once cooled. But, all I needed it for was to spray a large bucket of brass.
     
  19. Laphroaig

    Laphroaig Member

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    I can't come up with a good analogy. Its definitely semi-plastic and very sticky. It would take some force to push your finger to the bottom of the jar, or dig out a tablespoonful.

    https://www.makeyourown.buzz/lanolin-anhydrous-usp/
     
  20. Texas10mm

    Texas10mm Member

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  21. gifbohane

    gifbohane Member

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    Most of you are using 12 to 1? I have been using 10 to 1 and the same bottle that someone pictured here on this thread. I have never had a problem with it failing to mix or anything else......beats the hell out of factory $7 a can.
     
  22. fotheringill

    fotheringill Member

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    Hot water.

    Be aware that whatever you have left over is going to re solidify. Do not flush it down the toilet because after it clumps up and stuffs the line, whatever your flush down afterwards is going to not go away as intended.
     
  23. Average Joe

    Average Joe Member

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    Maybe I'm wrong, but wouldn't a 12:1 ratio be 12 oz of Heet and 1 oz of lanolin ?
     
  24. 9mmepiphany

    9mmepiphany Moderator

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    Nope, you're correct; typo on my part... I corrected the original

    I warm both in a hot water bath before mixing in a spray bottle
     
  25. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    Everyone keeps saying that the solution will separate out and need shaking up, but I haven't touched mine since I made it in February and it shows zero signs of separating out, still in solution.
     
    MI2600 and gifbohane like this.
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