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  1. #1

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    Bird Shot Ballast?

    Having checked with all the local gun stores I am told the same at each....."Don't have bird or buck shot, haven't had any for over a year.....won't have any either. Soooo, the question is: Is anyone else having the same problem, and if so, have you found a suitable alternative??

  2. #2

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    RE: Bird Shot Ballast?

    I have a good working relationship with my local tyre fitter and I can get dead balance weights off him. (His boss runs a boat, and so is sympathetic to model boaters anyway)
    Builders and plumbers who have been working on old property often have scrap lead pipe to dispose of. Rolls of lead strip are often available from builders merchants.

  3. #3
    larrykin's Avatar
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    RE: Bird Shot Ballast?

    Just for the record,

    I beleive the rules are, for a Soling boat, the hollow ballast bulb must be filled with lead shot. Otherwise you could just use a lead bulb .

    Here in Sydney, where the gun laws are a bit tougher than Texas , there is only one store selling gun supplies. Every Soling owner here has to drive out to this store to buy their lead shot.

    LL
    In some cultures my behaviour would be considered normal............

  4. #4

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    RE: Bird Shot Ballast?

    Right guys....shot is definitely the handy way to go. Another alternative ...granted less handy...is solder lead available at hardware stores. Runs about $15 for a 5Lb ingot. BTW, the local tire shops have an agreement with a fellow to sell him all their scrap tire weights: I'm guessing the reloaders are having an equally tough time getting material for ammunition.

    Hummmmm, I wonder if the gun range run me off if I showed up with a shovel???

  5. #5

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    RE: Bird Shot Ballast?

    My local SCUBA (diving) shop sells coated lead shot in 1, 2, & 3 Kilo bags for buoyancy compensation.

    But I don't know if you've got one of those near you.............

  6. #6

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    RE: Bird Shot Ballast?

    AHAA....there's a forehead slapper !! I didn't know there was such a thing as coated shot for scuba ballast. Thanks, I'll check that out.

    The thing about shot is that you just mix it with a slurry of resin or even plaster ( sealed with a layer of 6 oz. glass cloth), pour into a model airplane wheel pant mold ( got aplenty of them) and you're in business. Assuming there are no conflicting class rule, of course.

  7. #7

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    RE: Bird Shot Ballast?

    Here's another alternative to lead shot, that is pourable, but not as dense as lead.....bulk purchased BB's. Walmart carries 4,000 count packages that, at first glance appear to be an acceptable alternative. Have yet to look into the availability of Scuba ballast.

  8. #8

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    RE: Bird Shot Ballast?

    Since you are in the USA, here is a link that could be useful to you:

    http://www.scuba.com/scuba-gear-154/...ot-Weight.html

  9. #9

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    RE: Bird Shot Ballast?

    How many pounds of lead shot do you need. I have some that I can sell you for $2 a pound plus shipping. I am in Colorado email me if you are interested, newmanre@yahoo.com.

  10. #10

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    RE: Bird Shot Ballast?

    Thanks for the offer ren, but I really need to find a local alternative that other folks 'round here can use on an ongoing basis. But, like I said, many thanks!

  11. #11
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    RE: Bird Shot Ballast?


    Do you need lead shot? Or just lead. I cast my own lead bulbs from a mold I made. Eay to do.

    For lead I use fishing sinkers. 5 x #6 snapper sinkers. They weigh 400grams each so 5 = 2 kg. Or (convert 2.2lb = 1 kg) nearly 5 lbs. Cost me $2.50 each.

    Alternately you can use 1mm thick lead sheeting. Cut into series of bulb cross-section shapes and epoxy together. Like laminating. Then file smooth.

    If you have to have lead shot. Get together with everyone who needs shot and work out size of order. How many pounds. Contact suppliers and try for a discount for a large order including delivery. Does Dick Cheney live near you? Ask him? Sure he never has a supply shortage.

    Larry.
    In some cultures my behaviour would be considered normal............

  12. #12
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    RE: Bird Shot Ballast?



    BANG..........BANG







    duck






  13. #13

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    RE: Bird Shot Ballast?

    Likewise


  14. #14

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    RE: Bird Shot Ballast?

    Try the local tire shops for lead tire weights. Or try scrap yards, and roof repair people for lead flashing from old roofs. Also try plummers for old lead pipes. I am working with sand casting my bulbs. they come out not too bad, BE CAREFULL as allways.

  15. #15

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    RE: Bird Shot Ballast?

    Good ideas Light'in......unfortunately re-loaders and some others have had the same idea In order to get the lead they need they have arranged with local tire shops to purchase all their scrap lead. Seems everybody using "old" lead is in the same fix.

    What I decided to do...out of expedience and unbridled curiosity is the make the ballast bulbs for my Footy and Pea Pod using resin/BB's. Wanted to see if the BBs would serve and what drawbacks resulted. What I found was, they served well....but resulted in a somewhat larger bulb. Guess that's to be expected. Unfortunatly I haven't been able to locate bird shot for a heads-up comparison between the mass that lead presents vs. steel. Just guessing...maybe twenty percent larger steel bulb. The other drawback is that it's near impossible to reduce or change the shape/size of the bulb made with BB's. That's to say, grinding the bulb produces BB's recocheing around the shop at the speed of light. NOT a good result.

    So, about the only safe way to alter the shape/weight of a resin/BB casing is to INCREASE with a filler such as Bondo. In the future, I think I'll first lay up a skin of glass cloth/resin in my plaster mold then fill to correct weight with BB/resin....leaving a void to allow for more BB's as needed for fine tuning. But, I reckon the cost/labor of using BB's to amount to nearly the same as lead. The main difference being in mass/availabilty of material. Two things are for sure though....probably...... the situation with disappearing lead supplies is only going to get worse, until...... and the joy of modeling is experimentation.

  16. #16

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    RE: Bird Shot Ballast?

    Scrap yards are still a good sorce for lead if you have one near you. I allways melt mine down , and sand cast the bulb. You get a little rough finnish, but its nothing that can't be smothed out with a little bondo.

  17. #17

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    RE: Bird Shot Ballast?

    How about using bb for bb guns. I use the brass bb as the lead one or not sold any longer do you EPA and lead in the enviroment. first ine the bilge and keel with wax paper. I then fill the are with the bb's. I then slow pour in glue tapping the side of the hull to remove air bubbles. 2 days later i flip the hull upside down the the fitted mass of bb come out. I peal off the wax paper and re insert the the weight. I make the weight mass removeable this way.

  18. #18

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    RE: Bird Shot Ballast?

    Local (Calif) skeet ranges recycle lead shot for their members' reloading pleasure and at a reduced price.

  19. #19

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    RE: Bird Shot Ballast?

    I just had that problem. I bought some through Victor boat builders. Also I just found some on ebay made by kyosho KYOY8 called sailboat ballast:$18

  20. #20

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    RE: Bird Shot Ballast?

    Use BB's

  21. #21

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    RE: Bird Shot Ballast?

    It is hard to get real lead anymore, I guess to many folks were eating it and went nuts. Seriously, fishing tackle shops and dive shops sometime sell a bags of shot that look just like the lead shot but are made of some non toxic material. I have purchased shot gun shells and just torn them apart - works fine and really wasn't too expensive at Wally World (Wal-mart)
    Boomer


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