Labor Day in the United States is a holiday celebrated on the first Monday in September. It is a celebration of the American labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of their country. -- Wikipedia.
I've been collecting range scrap in small lots pretty much all summer and today I went to a friend's house where we melted all that stuff down and cast it into handy ingots for bullet casting. Here is some of the raw material:
We began with 203 pounds of jacketed range scrap, 18 pounds of cast range scrap and 15 pounds of "cowboy" range scrap (mostly what I call "cowboy scabs" recovered from in front of the steel targets these very soft projectiles are fired at). Here is the cast and cowboy raw material, cast on the left, cowboy on the right.
We also melted some pewter into small ingots for alloying later (pewter, high in tin, helps harden the projectiles). I was disappointed that some of the "pewter" turned out not be, even one cup that was marked "English Pewter" and "Made in Sheffield." Dirty lying Brits.
Here is the set-up. We used two propane cookers under an awning at the back of the property. We ran an extension cord out to a box fan to keep the fumes blowing away from us as we worked.
The pewter yielded a disappointing 7 pounds. All ingots are marked, in the xase of the pewter as "PEW." Still, as I only had about 25 bucks in the pewter (picked up over time at yard sales, estate sales and thrift stores) this wasn't a terribly uneconomic yield. Still, it could have been better, but I am learning more about pewter markings and what not to buy.
For fluxing we used the red wax off of Gouda cheese packaging and it seemed to work very well, superior to crayons certainly.
In the end, our efforts yielded:
Cowboy lead (CBY) 14 poundsCast scrap (CRS) 16 poundsJacketed scrap (JRS) 140 pounds.