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Tool Talk Discussion Board

Re: How do you cut lead bars?

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Posted by Bret4207 on August 31, 2013 at 16:40:06 from (

In Reply to: How do you cut lead bars? posted by buickanddeere on August 31, 2013 at 07:03:25:

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Nope, not gonna happen. Not on lead alloys. Otherwise you'd have molten lead all over everything. One of leads uses is a lubricant in steel on steel settings back in the early part of the last century. Lubricants reduce friction and heating. The danger of vapors from melting common lead/tin/antimony alloys has been researched and the results published. It was a big deal some years back and bullet casting was supposed to be as sure a form of suicide as there was. The testing determined you'd pretty much have to get the lead up to near boiling (over 3K degrees) and inhale the vapors determinedly for a significant period of time to give you any real issues. Your safety concerns at the refinery were as much due to the chloroethane as the sodium-lead alloy used. It's all nasty stuff in that setting. For a guy cutting up some lead alloy bars the dangers are no more significant than breathing in the dusts formed cutting metal with an abrasive saw.

I realize for some people there is no such thing as "too safe" and respect that position. But having been exposed to the myriad of wives tales surrounding lead alloys in the bullet casting biz I've discounted much of the myth that surrounds lead. Don't forget that water, sunshine and alcohol in unwise amounts can all lead to death too.


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