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Norco

Lure Making 101

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I have just purchased a big lead melting machine, molds for jigs and jigging spoons, laddles, paint and basically all the tools I need to make my own lures. Does any one else make there own lures from lead and what advice can you give a rookie. Thanks!!!

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Seriously, though. I make some of my own stuff, and it really is as rewarding as you think it's gonna be. In fact, I'm getting ready to tie a few maribous here at my desk during lunch! Haven't started melting, yet. I'd like to know how bismuth performs in a mold.

------------------
Aquaman
< )/////><{
"I think we're gonna need a bigger boat."

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I've dealt with bismuth before and it melts like butter. Spendy, but you can actually cut it with a low wattage soldering iron if needed.

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I would like some info on Bismuth too. I melt a lot of sinkers and I have a buddy that just started his own Bass bait company here in Ohio. He is making Buzzbaits and Spinnerbaits right now but wants to get into the Crankbaits eventually.

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Jim Reed
http://countrykatfishing.com

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Do the melting and pouring in a well ventilated area. You may want to consider getting a respirator that is equipped with filters that stop lead vapors from entering your body.

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My email is srannie@sasktel.net, I have found a few sites which I have ordered all my products from but any more would be great. I guess I can't list the sites I alreay know

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Back a couple of months ago on the 'lead ban' thread in 'political power', coldone posted a great chart with the weights and melting temps of various metals. I won't re-post it here, but it's worth checking out with 'search'. A jig mold, melter and some bismuth are on my list of tackle investments. How 'bout epoxy? Anyone tried that in a mold? What could you use as a release agent?

------------------
Aquaman
< )/////><{
"I think we're gonna need a bigger boat."

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I make %95 of my jigs for river fishing and all my larger sinkers.

As has been mentioned a well ventilated area is a must !
One of those small gate shears for trimming the sprue off your jigheads is well worth the expense. I think they go about 8 bucks.
A pliers and screwdriver are good tools to keep handy also.

DON'T overheat your lead as that will lead to frosting and your mold won't fill properly. I assume you have a Lee Production pot ? That's what I have and a setting of between 5 and 6 will do you right.

Use the softest lead you can find. I go to the scrap metal dealer in town and buy mine for about 35 cents a pound. By soft lead I mean you want lead that when you stick your thumbnail into it it leaves a mark. Tire weights are NOT soft lead and I don't use them.They have a lot of alloys other than lead in them that make it hard to get a consistent decent jig/sinker time after time.

Keep a screwdriver handy as somtimes your spout will stick open and the lead will keep pouring out. A twist or two back and forth in top of the shut off pin will cure that.

I keep a small cast iron casting pot directly under the spout. This will catch any lead that spills out due to the spout not shutting off properly.

I also keep an old spoon handy to skin the crud and foriegn material the floats to the top of the melting pot.

I also keep a thin nail or straitened paper clip handy to run up the spout from time to time as it sometimes gets plugged for one reson or another.

Absolutely NEVER EVER get any type of liquid ( pop , beer , water etc )near your melting pot. Even a tiny drop of liquid will put you in the hurt locker should it come in contact with melted lead.

Preheat your molds before you use them. I do that by setting it on top of me melter as it's warming up. After the lead is good to go ( melted ) make some test runs by casting jigs/sinkers WITHOUT a hook or swivel to see how they turn out.

If they come out wrinkled = your leads too cool. If it comes out with tiny cracks and is white in appearence ( frosted ) your lead is too hot. You want a smooth,shiney, unblemished finish on your jigs.

I like useing the powder paints = easy and fast plus not much of a mess at all.

I do use vinyl paints from time to time but usualy in an airbrush. I thin that with acetone as strait vinil paint won't flow through my brush. IF you go with vinyl paints be sure to use a well ventilated area.
That stuff will knock your socks off after a short time if you don't plus it will stink up the house = [PoorWordUsage] OFF the old lady BIG TIME ! LOL

Don't eat while casting lead and be sure to wash your hands after each casting session. This will get rid of any residual lead you may have on your hands.

Sorry for the book here ! Casting jigs/sinkers is easy but there are tricks to it that will streamline your sessions.

Any more questions just ask.

Have fun. It's a fun hobby. ~~~~~~ ><>

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I bought the Lee Production Magnam Melter. There is no bottom pour on it you need a laddle to pour. Is this a good unit?? it was one of the more expensive units or should I have gone with the bottom pour???

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Meant to ask before but spaced out.

Where can you get ahold of Bismouth for jig making ? How much per pound does it cost roughly ?

Thanks

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I have the Lee production pot , it has the bottom pour on it. I've found it's plenty for the casting I want to do. I never had much luck going the laddle way myself though many guys do.
Anyways , IF your only going to make jigs/sinkers for yourself and a few friends I would get the unit I have. I can easily cast 100 + 1/4 oz jigs an hour and that's not using production molds.

As for good units ? My first LEE Production pot lasted me 13 years. I just replaced it last spring after literaly thousands of jigs and sinkers cast. I can't complain ! LOL

I'm not familiar with the unit you have. How much lead does it hold ?

Have you used it yet ?

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