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 Post subject: Making lead shot is it worth buying the lead shot dripper?
PostPosted: Tue Mar 09, 2021 9:10 pm 
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Joined: Wed Sep 23, 2020 2:45 pm
Posts: 149
Location: Ozarks in Arkansas
Is it worth buying the 450.00 oasis lead shot dripper? I was given a huge piece of lead. I got it to make sinkers out of for fishing. But I will never use that much in a lifetime. Could a person make shot and sell it It? The oasis dripper comes with one set of drippers. The sets of different size shot are 40.00 each per size. Is graphite only thing I would need besides the oasis lead dripper to make shot?




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 Post subject: Re: Making lead shot is it worth buying the lead shot dripp
PostPosted: Tue Mar 09, 2021 9:17 pm 
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Location: Rochester, NY
Making your own lead shot comes with hazards and a HUGE learning curve. You also need a steady source of lead, which is difficult to find economically these days. If you have to BUY lead, it's quite unlikely you'll be able to make the shot cheaper than you can buy it. The only time people will buy it is if it's basically indistinguishable from factory, and there is typically a lot of trial and error before you get to that point.

Bottom line, there's a reason why it is not common. Unless you have an endless supply of free or near-free lead, and/or someone gives you the machine for free, it's very rarely worth the effort. And that's coming from someone who can make a penny scream.

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 Post subject: Re: Making lead shot is it worth buying the lead shot dripp
PostPosted: Tue Mar 09, 2021 9:42 pm 
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If you want anything resembling quality, you'll need to add antimony to the pure lead to make it harder and antimony isn't cheap. Might be better to find a bullet caster and sell what you don't need for sinkers

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 Post subject: Re: Making lead shot is it worth buying the lead shot dripp
PostPosted: Tue Mar 09, 2021 10:16 pm 
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Joined: Wed Dec 18, 2019 5:25 pm
Posts: 245
Location: Florida
I have been a bullet caster for 32 years over 200,000 bullets. I have looked into making shot: it is not a easy process to make good shot and with cheap lead sources drying up; It would be hard to break even cost wise. Lead to make sinkers and lead to make shot or bullets is way different. Messing with Antimony is not fun ether.


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 Post subject: Re: Making lead shot is it worth buying the lead shot dripp
PostPosted: Tue Mar 09, 2021 10:32 pm 
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Joined: Mon May 25, 2015 10:42 pm
Posts: 425
Location: In The Woods Of The SC Low Country
I bought an Oasis shotmaker about 4 years ago. I DO have a bountiful supply of lead as I have been casting bullets forever. I started making shot(#8's) when shot went to $40/bag. You will have setup a catch tank filled with a liquid of certain viscosity. Water won't work. I use fabric softner. After you make the shot you have to wash it to get it clean of the softner. Then spread it out to dry. Then you have to sift it through a strainer to separate the "good" shot from the bad/oversize pieces. i made mine from a pan that I drilled a certain size holes in the bottom. Then you have graphite it. I put about 4 lbs in my vibratory tumbler with a squirt of graphite powder and run for 20 mins or so. You end up with nice shiney shot that looks like factory. I usually run 75-100 lbs twice a year. This satisfies my need. My shotmaker has paid for itself twice over. I can't tell difference between my shot and bought shot on doves/quail/rabbits and clay birds. To me it's a BIG savings.


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 Post subject: Re: Making lead shot is it worth buying the lead shot dripp
PostPosted: Tue Mar 09, 2021 10:39 pm 
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The Happy Kaboomer wrote:
I bought an Oasis shotmaker about 4 years ago. I DO have a bountiful supply of lead as I have been casting bullets forever. I started making shot(#8's) when shot went to $40/bag. You will have setup a catch tank filled with a liquid of certain viscosity. Water won't work. I use fabric softner. After you make the shot you have to wash it to get it clean of the softner. Then spread it out to dry. Then you have to sift it through a strainer to separate the "good" shot from the bad/oversize pieces. i made mine from a pan that I drilled a certain size holes in the bottom. Then you have graphite it. I put about 4 lbs in my vibratory tumbler with a squirt of graphite powder and run for 20 mins or so. You end up with nice shiney shot that looks like factory. I usually run 75-100 lbs twice a year. This satisfies my need. My shotmaker has paid for itself twice over. I can't tell difference between my shot and bought shot on doves/quail/rabbits and clay birds. To me it's a BIG savings.

75-100 pounds is only 3-4 bags; by the time you factor in the electricity, hraphite, equipment, I do not see how you can say it has paid for itself twice over.

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 Post subject: Re: Making lead shot is it worth buying the lead shot dripp
PostPosted: Tue Mar 09, 2021 11:49 pm 
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204_ruger wrote:
Is it worth buying the 450.00 oasis lead shot dripper?


Not remotely close to a good investment.

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 Post subject: Re: Making lead shot is it worth buying the lead shot dripp
PostPosted: Wed Mar 10, 2021 12:57 am 
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Joined: Sun Jun 26, 2005 4:43 pm
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Location: PA Dutch Country
75-100lb = 3-4 bags x2 per year = 6-8 bags x about 4 years = 24-32 bags. At +$40 per bag = $1000 to $1300 or more in lead shot that didn't need to be bought. Plus the satisfaction of making stuff.

Happy Kaboomer, how much do you figure it cost you to make your next 100 lb of shot? Now that you are well set after 4 years? How much time per run?

I certainly don't shoot enough to make it worthwhile but I respect the capability of those that do.

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 Post subject: Re: Making lead shot is it worth buying the lead shot dripp
PostPosted: Wed Mar 10, 2021 7:20 am 
Tournament Grade

Joined: Wed Sep 23, 2020 2:45 pm
Posts: 149
Location: Ozarks in Arkansas
I was given a piece of lead not talking small 400 or 500 pd. We are talking 3,500 to 4,000 pd block. They wanted it gone. I had to loaded it in my truck with skid steer. Bump on my truck was riding low. Got it home had to use a tractor and chain to unload. Before I got that block . I had 1,500 pds I have saved over the yrs. So all I would have in it would be the dripper and graphite. That's why I was looking into a dripper. I have the tumblers for for my rifle and pistol reloading stuff.


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 Post subject: Re: Making lead shot is it worth buying the lead shot dripp
PostPosted: Wed Mar 10, 2021 7:29 am 
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Location: Mid-Missouri
A buddy of mine spent weeks making his own shot dripper. He also spent a bunch of money on the correct "nozzles" and several gallons of some super expensive RV antifreeze (my recollection may be wrong about what the liquid was) to catch the hot shot. He was super proud of his accomplishment. He ran it a couple of times working the kinks out and then ran one big batch. I don't think he ever ran it again. He used the excuse that the weather was too hot and he was waiting for winter to fire it up again. Then he all but quit shooting shotguns . . . :(

I believe he said wheel weights were the ticket as they had the right amount of antimony.

Seems to me the juice isn't worth the squeeze unless you intend commercial scale production.


Last edited by Bladeswitcher on Wed Mar 10, 2021 7:37 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Making lead shot is it worth buying the lead shot dripp
PostPosted: Wed Mar 10, 2021 7:37 am 
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The correct wheel weights (lead) are getting hard to come by, and are expensive to buy. They are pretty much not cost effective anymore.


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 Post subject: Re: Making lead shot is it worth buying the lead shot dripp
PostPosted: Wed Mar 10, 2021 8:10 am 
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Joined: Fri Jan 16, 2015 9:11 am
Posts: 1082
My thoughts -
If the price of lead shot is a hardship, get a clean, comfortable part time job.
I personally don't wish to add any more time handling lead than absolutely necessary.
I'm not saying that I like the price of good lead shot, but I don't want the job of making it.
There must be some other way to save or make the money required.


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 Post subject: Re: Making lead shot is it worth buying the lead shot dripp
PostPosted: Wed Mar 10, 2021 8:10 am 
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Joined: Sun Jun 24, 2018 2:51 pm
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Location: S.E. Wisconsin
Some where on SGW is a VERY long thread on this exact subject. You should find it and read it.

Steve

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 Post subject: Re: Making lead shot is it worth buying the lead shot dripp
PostPosted: Wed Mar 10, 2021 8:18 am 
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Joined: Thu Jul 31, 2008 11:12 am
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When you figure in the cost of scrounging lead, propane, equipment and electricity it's not worth it. And I won't bother going into the health issues.


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 Post subject: Re: Making lead shot is it worth buying the lead shot dripp
PostPosted: Wed Mar 10, 2021 8:44 am 
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Joined: Fri Jan 21, 2005 10:33 am
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Location: Virginia
My father did it for a couple years. He was a design engineer and had a nice set up, started with the Littleton shot maker…they recommended cutting fluid as cooling agent From what I remember the fluid level had to be a certain distance from the edge of the ramp on the shot maker…too close the shot deformed, too far same thing. Also the liquid had to be a certain temperature within a couple degrees, too warm you had a glob in the bottom, too cold deformed shot. It took him a month or so to get it right and a lot of additional money, the end result was pretty impressive but in the end the lead got hard to find. Also you couldn’t leave it unattended; as soon as you did something happened and would ruin a couple pounds of shot…it was an all day job to get 50-100 lbs. of shot. If he were still alive and I had the setup and you gave me the lead…I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t start it back up…it was a major PITA to do it…MAJOR. Melt the lead, skim off the dross, make into bars, melt that into shot, clean, dry, graphite and repeat…PITA!!!!

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 Post subject: Re: Making lead shot is it worth buying the lead shot dripp
PostPosted: Wed Mar 10, 2021 9:37 am 
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Joined: Tue Nov 15, 2005 9:33 pm
Posts: 6658
Location: Mascoutah IL
There is a very simple method to turn your 5000 lbs of lead into excellent quality shot.

First, load it up and haul it to the local scrap yard and sell it to them. Scrap lead is sells for $.40 - $.50 per LB. Then take the ~$2500 you got from selling the lead and buy 40 - 50 bags of factory shot.


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 Post subject: Re: Making lead shot is it worth buying the lead shot dripp
PostPosted: Wed Mar 10, 2021 9:39 am 
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Joined: Sun Jun 24, 2018 2:51 pm
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Location: S.E. Wisconsin
204_ruger
Here you go, I found it. Read it all and I am sure the lock-down will be over. LOL

https://www.shotgunworld.com/bbs/viewto ... shot+maker

Steve

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 Post subject: Re: Making lead shot is it worth buying the lead shot dripp
PostPosted: Wed Mar 10, 2021 10:42 am 
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Joined: Wed Nov 30, 2016 6:04 pm
Posts: 642
It's been pretty well demonstrated here that it isn't cost effective. But it wasn't cost effective to reload a couple years ago either, and most of us did it anyway.

Most of the reasons people cited for reloading don't really apply - it's unlikely you'll make better quality shot, the sizes are going to be the same as commercial shot, and (so far) availability isn't really an issue.

But it might well bring you some satisfaction to do it, and it isn't crazy to hedge against a shot shortage (most of us did that by buying a ton of shot over the last few years).

I think the biggest question would be how much free lead you actually have. $450 is about 10 bags of shot, and a 250# lump would be a big hunk of lead. To even think about it I'd probably want to have at least 500# of lead on hand.


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 Post subject: Re: Making lead shot is it worth buying the lead shot dripp
PostPosted: Wed Mar 10, 2021 10:44 am 
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Joined: Sun Aug 24, 2003 3:31 pm
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Location: Kearney NE
I agree with Randy. That being said, I’ve been known to do a lot of things that are not a. remotely cost effective investment. Why? Because!
Making shot would not be one of those endeavors. I’m not sure casting bullets for my several different handgun chamberings makes any sense either, except I’m not worried about where my next 50,000 or so bullets are coming from. From what I’ve researched, making shot is a whole ‘nother critter in the zoo!
My local scrap yard gives .35 to .55 for lead depending on what it is. He gets from .90 to $1,25 a pound for it, again, depending on what it is. Unless “because” is your reasoning for making shot, sell some lead and buy your shot, you’ll be glad you did!

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 Post subject: Re: Making lead shot is it worth buying the lead shot dripp
PostPosted: Wed Mar 10, 2021 7:56 pm 
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Joined: Mon May 25, 2015 10:42 pm
Posts: 425
Location: In The Woods Of The SC Low Country
oneounceload wrote:
The Happy Kaboomer wrote:
I bought an Oasis shotmaker about 4 years ago. I DO have a bountiful supply of lead as I have been casting bullets forever. I started making shot(#8's) when shot went to $40/bag. You will have setup a catch tank filled with a liquid of certain viscosity. Water won't work. I use fabric softner. After you make the shot you have to wash it to get it clean of the softner. Then spread it out to dry. Then you have to sift it through a strainer to separate the "good" shot from the bad/oversize pieces. i made mine from a pan that I drilled a certain size holes in the bottom. Then you have graphite it. I put about 4 lbs in my vibratory tumbler with a squirt of graphite powder and run for 20 mins or so. You end up with nice shiney shot that looks like factory. I usually run 75-100 lbs twice a year. This satisfies my need. My shotmaker has paid for itself twice over. I can't tell difference between my shot and bought shot on doves/quail/rabbits and clay birds. To me it's a BIG savings.

75-100 pounds is only 3-4 bags; by the time you factor in the electricity, hraphite, equipment, I do not see how you can say it has paid for itself twice over.


IT HAS. I 'm retired and have the time and the FREE wheel weights. Besides. It fun and I'm NEVER without shot. I made 100's of pounds to start with and stored the finished product in fabric softner bottles. Therefore a couple of 100 lbs each year tops of the stash. I can make 8's and 9's............There are lots of shooters today who can't find shot or powder. I have plenty of both plus primers. I shot 12 boxes of 410 & 20 last week. Today they are loaded and ready to go again..........Be a boy scout......Be prepared....And those so called shortages will have ZERO effect on your ability to shoot as much as you want---When ever you want.




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