Warning!! Warning when melting lead

Discussion in 'Terminal Tackle Review' started by Abu65, Feb 26, 2007.

  1. Abu65

    Abu65 Member

    Messages:
    583
    State:
    Kentucky
    I Just wanted to let everyone know about a bad & almost life altering experience I had last Monday 02-19-2007, here goes; A friend & I were melting lead in a cast iron skillet on a turkey fryer burner, we were using bullet lead from a shooting range where they shoot steel targets that a friend of mine had recovered & gave to me. They must shoot alot of bullets at these steel targets because he has given me several 5 gallon buckets full & it is really good lead when melted & cleaned up. However heres the kicker we were adding more lead to the melting pot when I looked down & saw the primer end of a fully loaded 9mm round in the pot & before we could react it exploded. Now heres the problem we had on leather welding gloves, dust masks but no safety glasses yes call me whatever you want but we didnt have any eye protection, and 99% of the time we do wear our safety glasses but for whatever reason we did not have them on!! We were in my shop & my wife heard the explosion in the house. My friend was very lucky and recieved no burns at all. I had some pretty bad burns on my left arm but nothing major, my face recieved several small burns but nothing that will scar, my eyes were burned pretty bad & I am extremely fortunate that it did no permanent damage, the Emergency room cleaned my eyes up and got the lead out of my eyes & I went to a specialist on Wednesday & he said there was no loss of sight or any permanent damage at all, I still have 20/20 vision and do not need glasses. So we were extremely lucky. It is really amazing how fast the eyes heal. I feel fully recovered with no pain or irratation at all. It was very painfull Monday & Tuesday night it felt like I had sand in my eyes. I just want every one of you all to think before you do anything be sure to wear the proper protective equipment all the time there are no excuses. I dont care if your just weed eating or melting lead. I will from now on use a full face shield when melting lead and wear long sleeve shirts. You could really be scarred or blinded for life for life. They say that a drop of water in a lead pot will do the same thing. If you think safety equipment is uncomfortable get 700 degree lead in your eyes. Be safe & enjoy life!! Abu65
     
  2. LiquidSteel

    LiquidSteel New Member

    Messages:
    898
    State:
    La Vista N
    I have yet to learn how to pour my own weights, but brother an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of eye protection. I applaud you coming forward to educate us newbys about pouring and the dangers involved. Im glad to hear that you and your buddy didnt receive severe injuries. I know the first time I do make weights, I will ask where the lead came from and dig through it if I have to.
     

  3. Terry Day

    Terry Day New Member

    Messages:
    298
    State:
    Parkville, Missouri
    Great information! I'm glad neither of you were seriously injured!
     
  4. Abu65

    Abu65 Member

    Messages:
    583
    State:
    Kentucky
    Thanks for the comments, I wish I would have had my wife take pics of my face and eyes on Monday night Ive never seen eyes that red, so that you could see the seriousness of it. But I was to bust thanking God that I could still see my wife & children!!
     
  5. GoFish_Tony

    GoFish_Tony New Member

    Messages:
    600
    State:
    Big Rock, IL
    Dang!
    I can't imagine anything being more potentionaly dangerous, then what you went through. Thank you for sharing with us the life lesson you learned. Hopefully none of us will have to learn that one the hard way.

    There are no short cuts when it comes to safety (although we are all guilty of this at times.) I'm going to personally remember your story and your warnings and will try harder at staying safe.

    Thank God you guys are OK.

    Tony
    _
     
  6. Pastor E

    Pastor E New Member

    Messages:
    3,194
    State:
    Beebe AR
    I`m glad you were not hurt Brother
     
  7. Fishinfreak

    Fishinfreak Member

    Messages:
    256
    State:
    North Bend,Ohio
    Glad everyone was not hurt bad.We all learn from things like this.Hope to meet you on the water someday.
     
  8. Scott Daw

    Scott Daw New Member

    Messages:
    2,002
    State:
    Allentown, Pennsylvania
    Thats one heck of a way to get educated on safety. Im glad your ok. what is the chance of lead poisoning thru burns like that?
     
  9. Abu65

    Abu65 Member

    Messages:
    583
    State:
    Kentucky
    They told me at the ER that there was not much of a chance if any. I was wondering the same thing.
     
  10. Hope

    Hope New Member

    Messages:
    1,177
    State:
    Oklahoma
    Shannon, just wanted to say thanks for the warning and I'm so glad to hear that you and your friend are alright. That was a very close call indeed!
    Been thinking of getting us set up to make our own sinkers here, and never considered those particular risks.
    You take good care and we'll all make sure to use proper safety gear... whew, who woulda thought of all that!

    Carolyn
     
  11. jtrew

    jtrew New Member

    Messages:
    4,404
    State:
    Little Rock, AR
    Putting a drop or two of water into a pot of melted lead generally doesn't cause the lead to splatter, because the water is so much lighter than the lead, it just bounces around on top of the melted lead while it boils away. Now, the slightest bit of moisture trapped under the lead will immediately expand to steam, blowing the melted lead right back out the pour hole. I have wiped down the inside of a mold, then heated it too hot to touch with my bare hands, only to find out the hard way that somehow there was still a little bit of moisture inside. It wouldn't surprise me to have the same problem if I used green wood to make a temporary mold; I've always used well-seasoned dry wood for that, and haven't had a problem. But, you definitely want to avoid pouring melted lead anywhere moisture could be trapped underneath.
     
  12. Wooly

    Wooly New Member

    Messages:
    134
    State:
    Illinois
    Shannon I'm glad you and your buddy are going to be alright. I would have never thought to check the lead. Makes me wonder how a primer ended up down by the targets. Are you going to continue to use that lead. Just curious.

    Wooly
     
  13. Abu65

    Abu65 Member

    Messages:
    583
    State:
    Kentucky

    Yes, we will continue to use the lead but only after thorough inspection. It was not just a primer but a fully loaded 9mm. Primer brass powder & bullet. the brass is still frozen in the skillet with the cooled down lead & I found the bullet on the front deck of my boat while taking my duck blind off & putting my rod holders back in Friday evening. It was weird that I found the bullet I assumed it would have been in the pot still. We were pouring the sinkers in front of the boat by the garage door. I had always heard if a bullet exploded the bullet wouldnt move but the brass would I guess the brass was lodged in the pot some how. How the bullet ended on the target end of the shooting range we will never know.
     
  14. olefin

    olefin New Member

    Messages:
    3,908
    State:
    Texas
    Shannon, thanks for sharing your experience. You and friend are very lucky!

    Safety glasses still come natural with me.. where I worked for 32 years they were the one piece of safety equipment that was required in all operating areas. They saved my eyes on two different occasions.
     
  15. jdstraka

    jdstraka Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    Messages:
    4,721
    State:
    Council Bluffs, Iowa
    Name:
    John
    Thank the Lord you are OK Shannon!!!! Thanks for the Tip. Your Friend and BOC Brother. J.D.
     
  16. Mark J

    Mark J New Member

    Messages:
    9,407
    State:
    Four Oaks, NC
    Dayton, yea, I'll stop somewhere on the way home from work and about halfway into the store I'm going in I start fumbling for my safety glasses.
    Second nature.

    I've driven home 65 miles and realized I still had my safety glasses on.:big_smile:
     
  17. billcatfish

    billcatfish New Member

    Messages:
    1,571
    State:
    evansville Ind
    glad to seeing your doing ok hope to get into melting some lead some day will take your advice on this now keep us posted on how your doing
     
  18. 223reload

    223reload New Member

    Messages:
    10,798
    State:
    Oklahoma
    Thak GOD for the miracle of your sight Shannon as a welder the thought of doing most anything without safety glasses is unthinkable i even use them while drilling holes with an electric drill as i have had the wind blow them into my eye on one occasion
     
  19. teaysvalleyguy

    teaysvalleyguy New Member

    Messages:
    9,751
    State:
    GC, OHIO
    Glad to hear everything will be OK. Thanks for the warning.
     
  20. trnsmsn

    trnsmsn New Member

    Messages:
    1,214
    State:
    Missouri Originally Now I
    Thanks for sharing your experience with us & I'm glad that no one was seriously injured.

    I would like to add that on the same note, it is very important to only melt the lead in a WELL ventilated area. The fumes will have a long term & lethal effect on you.

    I know that most of us have been guilty @ one time or another of not using safety equipment. It's better to be safe than sorry !!!!!!!!:wink: