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tumblers and lead exposure

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by mek42, Apr 23, 2008.

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  1. mek42

    mek42 Member

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    If I made a wooden box to put my tumbler in and then hooked up a shop vac with a HEPA filter, would this reduce the lead exposure to me?
     
  2. ReloaderFred

    ReloaderFred Member

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    I've got 3 tumblers running on my bench and the last time I was checked for lead levels in my blood, they were normal.

    Wash your hands and don't eat the media.......

    Hope this helps.

    Fred
     
  3. evan price

    evan price Member

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    Keep the lid on when you tumble, don't let the media crumbs build up without sweeping it up regularly, and always wash your hands and face before you eat anything or lick your fingers, and you'll be just fine. You are actually in more lead exposure danger picking up the fired cases than you are handling the tumbler.
     
  4. Ergosphere

    Ergosphere Member

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    I wear latex gloves when handling brass... that includes when I'm scrounging brass at the range, and sorting tumbled brass from the media. (I sift first, but there's always some media left in the brass.) But I can still smell some "dust" when tumbling and when sifting.

    Recently I had the same idea, to put a box over the tumbler in order to contain the dust. Air circulation is necessary to prevent the tumbler from overheating though... the shop-vac approach isn't bad but I'm not sure that it'd be enough.
     
  5. ranger335v

    ranger335v Member

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    Don't worry about it, just don't eat it. Unless you are breathing the tumbling dust from directly above the bowl and media for days at a time you won't get enough to be harmful, all the Chicken Little screaming of "The sky is falling!" aside.

    Cut a few paper towels into 3" squares and drop a couple of squares into each load. The stray "lead", if any, primer grit and dirty polish will get entangled in the loose fibers and you will just toss them out when they get dirty. It really helps to keep your media clean so it lasts longer.

    It is, of course, just common sense to wash your hands before eating or picking your nose after working with lead! ;) I keep a roll of paper towels and a can of auto mechanics hand cleaner (Go-Joe) in my loading room so I can clean my hands frequently.
     
  6. jlficken

    jlficken Member

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    Used dryer sheets work very well too at gathering all the lead and dust when tumbliing. I normally cut 2 up and put them in with every batch I tumble. They always come out almost black. The media lasts longer as well.
     
  7. strat81

    strat81 Member

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    jlficken has some good advice with the dryer sheets. You can also add a little bit of mineral spirits to keep dust down as well. If you tumble loaded ammo, I'd avoid the mineral spirits. You don't want to contaminate powder or primers.
     
  8. snuffy

    snuffy Member

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    You've been reading Al Gores book, haven't you? Earth in the lurch,,--or whatever he called it.

    Yes, there's lead styphonate in primers, therefore it's in the tumbler dust. As said, unless you purposely concentrate and inhale/ingest it, you won't get enough to be harmed.
     
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