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Lure Making Tips

See how to make your own soft plastic lures

Working with lead requires some common sense

From Do-It Manufacturing
Producers of Sinker and Lure Molds

Lead poisoning
is an accumulative effect caused by taking more lead into the body than it can expel. Each of us has some amount of lead in our body. A physician can obtain the current reading of your personal lead blood count if you are interested. While there is disagreement within the scientific community about what level of exposure to lead is cause for concern, there is no disagreement that overexposure is harmful. Instructions are furnished with lead hobby products to inform you of steps that you can take to reduce your exposure to lead.

1. Melt lead in a well ventilated area and exhaust fumes to the outside. Air movement that is sufficient to carry away the wisp of smoke from an extinguished match is generally considered sufficient ventilation. Lead melts at 621 degrees (F). When lead is molten, it releases minute amounts of vapors at a progressive rate as temperatures are increased. Harmful levels of lead vaporization are believed to occur at elevated temperatures above 1800 degrees (F). Only lower temperatures between 700-800 degrees are normally needed to cast lead hobby parts. Most melting equipment sold to hobbyists will not raise temperatures much above 900 degrees. Minimize vaporization by operating melters at the lowest temperature that gives good results.

2. Before eating or smoking, always wash your hands after handling raw lead so that lead dust is not transferred from your hands to food or tobacco products that could be ingested.

3. Small children are the most lead sensitive segment of the population. They are also inclined to put small objects in their mouths. Keep small children away from your work area.

4. Keep you work area clean.

Warning: Melting lead and casting lead objects will expose you and others in the area to lead, which is known to cause birth defects, other reproductive harm, and cancer.

Reducing Exposure: Lead contamination in air, in dust, and on your skin is invisible. Keep children and pregnant women away during use and until cleanup is complete.

Risk can be reduced -- but not eliminated -- with strong ventilation; washing hands immediately after use of these products before eating or smoking, and careful cleaning of surfaces and floors with disposable wipes, after lead dust has had a chance to settle. Use a lead-specific cleaner with EDTA, or a high-phosphate detergent (like most detergents sold for electric dishwashers), and bag wipes for disposal.

Moisture and melted lead are a deadly combination

By Jim Zeiner

While the precautions above are very important, the danger is an unseen one and one that takes longer to cause illness. That's why care must be taken. One danger that is very real and very dangerous is moisture and lead. Always inspect your lead before you put more in a melting pot. If it has any moisture at all, don't use it until you get it completely dry.

Your melted lead is over 700 degrees as reported above. Put on your thinking cap from grade school. What temperature does water boil at? The answer in case you forgot is 212 degrees. Can you imagine what happens when you put wet lead in a pot of melted lead? The results are not pretty.

It's never happened to me because I always store and melt lead inside, but I know someone that received serious burns while melting lead outside. The lead had been stored outside and had moisture on it. When a piece of lead was added to the pot of melted lead, it literally exploded with lead being projected of the pot. The person was lucky the in that the injuries were not worse that they were. The scars will remain a lifetime, but at least it didn't involve an eye or a facial burn.

Enough said. Always be careful when melting lead. If you are careful and use common sense, you will be safe. Gloves and goggles go a long way to increasing your safety. Care and clear thinking go even farther.

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