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Old 03-03-2013, 7:24 AM
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Default Casting Round Balls - Quench or Not?

I am planning to start casting round balls in .454 and .490 for my black powder guns.

I know they need to be "soft lead", so if using a soft alloy to cast, should I quench them in water or let them air cool?

I have read that quenching increases the hardness, but seems it would be better in avoiding deformation of the balls when dropping them out of the mold.
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Old 03-03-2013, 7:50 AM
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? I always did air cooled.
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Old 03-03-2013, 8:04 AM
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What did you drop them onto/into?
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Old 03-03-2013, 8:21 AM
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Hello,

Quenching in water doesn't matter if it's pure lead. Lead does not water harden.

If you have an alloy with antimony and/or tin, then yes, you'll water harden some.

You should not use anything but pure lead in cap'n'ball revolvers. I personally use hard lead in my muzzleloading rifles for all except hunting. Just seems a tad more precise.

Regards,

Josh
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Old 03-03-2013, 4:44 PM
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Quenching in water doesn't matter if it's pure lead. Lead does not water harden.
Good info, thank you.
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Old 03-03-2013, 7:02 PM
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I've always just dropped them into a 1970's wooden salad bowl.
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Old 03-03-2013, 8:06 PM
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Teak or mahogany?
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Old 03-03-2013, 8:13 PM
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Teak or mahogany?
Teak. But use whatcha want. Yard sales are good for that stuff.
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Old 03-03-2013, 9:06 PM
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I have an old bath towel that I fold up into a couple of layers and drop them off onto that. Some people use a slightly damp towel just to cool them faster so if you have to scoot some out of the way into another container they're not so hot.
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