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Lead ladle
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Mr.Westover
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Joined: 21 Sep 2007
Posts: 40
Location: Salt Lake City
Real Name: Brian Westover

PostPosted: Tue Apr 14, 2009 4:15 pm    Post subject: Lead ladle Reply with quote

Good day, I am looking for images of original 18th or early 19th century lead ladles for casting bullets. Were there really folding ones like some folks have, or would that be opening another can of worms a la the folding skillets?

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Tsegoweleh
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 14, 2009 8:15 pm    Post subject: Lead ladle Reply with quote

Oatsayo,
From what I am to understand the folding type lack any primary documentation. Its a great idea but There isent any evidence to them (that I am aware of)
Seems most of the ladles were forged or cast as one piece with a long handle,The majority being forged. Cast seems to be more 19th century
I was told once that there was some that had a loop to put a stick thru, But I have not comfirmed that.
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Mike Ameling
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 14, 2009 8:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The few lead ladles I have seen or read about have been forged - with fixed handles. And the cast iron ones all seem later - as in mid/late 1800's. I personally have not seen anything about original folding pouch/bag ladles. But I haven't been out researching them either.

Mikey - that grumpy ol' German blacksmith out in the Hinterlands
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Rod L
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Joined: 16 May 2007
Posts: 226
Location: the Forks of the Yellowstone and Missouri
Real Name: Rod Lassey

PostPosted: Tue Apr 14, 2009 9:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There's a folding handle ladle in the Museum of the Mountain Man, at Pinedale, Wyoming. But, I don't know the provenance of it. George Ainslie forged a few copies up quite a number of years ago, now---I have one of his that I use. I would say that 99.9% of ladles had plain, straight handles.

Rod

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2009 10:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

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Francois Labiche
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Joined: 16 May 2007
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Location: Western shore of the Mississippi below St Louis
Real Name: Al Puknat

PostPosted: Fri Apr 17, 2009 10:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ask yourself, "For what purpose would I need a lead ladle and mold in my shooting bag?" Lead weighs the same in bullet form as in ingot form. Why not carry precast balls?

Maybe you would like to retrieve the bullet from your killed deers to recast it? Ever shot a deer with your ML? The ball goes clean thru. Good luck finding it.

Perhaps, if I was going to work at a post for a year or longer, I would need to cast bullets from ingots, but then why not just bring my long handled ladle in my baggage? No need to carry in shooting bag. OR if you had a mold which fit your fusil, you could probably get the post blacksmith to run you off some balls.

Having said that; I have been to contests where one of the things we had to do was cast a ball and shoot it. Not necessarily PC, but if you wanted the points (or penalty?) you had to be prepared.to do whatever the score kepper wanted. :-)

Thought provoking, aint it?
F.

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smk50
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 17, 2009 7:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Francois,

First off, I agree with the precast ball theory. BUT balls can be found. I shot a deer, low grazed brisket, hit a fallen tree, another branch, then a 4ft long gouge in frozen ground, and BALL, plain as day, no damge(other than the sprue was worn off) needle in a haystack yes, but dont say it cant happen.
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badWind
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 17, 2009 7:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I find about 1 of 3 balls or pieces there-of from big mulies, whitetails, yeah usually the ball just goes thru...
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GreyWolf
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Joined: 15 May 2007
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Location: Southern Rockies
Real Name: Chuck Burrows

PostPosted: Sat Apr 18, 2009 3:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
"For what purpose would I need a lead ladle and mold in my shooting bag?"

FWIW - there are a few references to 19th Century mountaineers carrying molds on or in their shooting bags (IIRC Ruxton and Sage are two sources) and the Mariano Medina bag has the mold attached to the back of the shoulder strap.

Quote:
Ever shot a deer with your ML? The ball goes clean thru

Yes more than few and not always on big mulies. In the last 40 odd years of hunting here in the far west, I've had them stop fairly often just under the offside skin - it's a strange sight to watch how elastic living skin can be even when you've got a .54 roundball trying to punch it's way through (that was of course watching when some one else was shooting..)

As for ladles - I've seen a few out here in collections with a short hollow socket into which a stick can be pushed and used as a handle. I had one for a time and it was pretty handy even though I didn't pack it in my shooting pouch - it still took up less room and weighed less when going a horseback.

Here in the far west lead bars (and molds) are well documented as are pre-cast trade balls - so yes some folks were casting their own and while by the mid-1830's there were a number of posts established they were still few and far between so self sufficiency was (and still often is) the watchword....
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tgreene
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Joined: 18 Feb 2009
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Location: Danville, Ky
Real Name: Tyler Greene

PostPosted: Sat Apr 18, 2009 12:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here is an 18th century lead ladle for sale on the CLA website


http://www.longrifle.ws/forsale/default.asp?categoryID=all&age=Antique
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D.S. Bradshaw
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Joined: 19 Apr 2009
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Location: Middle Waters, USA
Real Name: D. Scott Bradshaw

PostPosted: Sun Apr 19, 2009 9:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This has me wondering, (critical thinking exercise) that if so many variations in rifle bores made it necessary for many rifles to have their own mold, does this not necessitate the possession of a ladle to cast with? Even some smoothbore weapons were inconsistent in bore guage. Pre cast ball was aLWAYS available as well? just thinking. To put the question in the simplest of terms; Why would you have a bag mold and NOT a ladle?
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Singleaction
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Joined: 17 May 2007
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Location: Cullman, Alabama
Real Name: Larry Quattlebaum

PostPosted: Sun Apr 19, 2009 12:12 pm    Post subject: Ladle Reply with quote

Here is a photo of a ladle that I purchase at an antique mall a few years back. I have no idea of the age.

(alt+p)

[/img]http://i357.photobucket.com/albums/oo11/SingleactionL/Ladle/DSC01833.jpg[img] (alt+p)
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Mike Ameling
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 19, 2009 4:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

D.S. Bradshaw wrote:
This has me wondering, (critical thinking exercise) that if so many variations in rifle bores made it necessary for many rifles to have their own mold, does this not necessitate the possession of a ladle to cast with? Even some smoothbore weapons were inconsistent in bore guage. Pre cast ball was aLWAYS available as well? just thinking. To put the question in the simplest of terms; Why would you have a bag mold and NOT a ladle?


The question is not IF you would have one. Military weapons and "trade guns" came in pretty standard calibers. So pre-cast roundballs were very much available. The trade goods inventories are full of listings for pre-cast round balls in those few standard sizes.

But if you do have a hand-made RIFLE in a ... unique ... caliber, then you do need that mold to cast a ball for that RIFLE.

The BIG QUESTION is WHY would you carry lead bars, a ladle, and a mould around in your hunting pouch while out for a day or two hunting/scouting? Why carry all the extra weight when you could just as easily have cast up the balls you would have needed before you took off - leaving your lead bars/ladle/mould back with the rest of your gear at the station camp, or fort, or settlement, or cabin.

Now, IF you are going to be out exploring or scouting out new territory, then YES you would bring extra gear along - either by boat or horseback. And YES you would probably then carry the fixin's to cast new roundballs for your specific rifle.

So back to that original idea - of carrying along the lead bars/ladle/mould in your hunting pouch/bag hanging from your side while out for just a day or two hunting. WHY?

The question is not IF you would have them, but WHY you would carry them around everywhere you go on a day-to-day basis?


Just a few humble thoughts to trouble your minds.

Mikey - that grumpy ol' German blacksmith out in the Hinterlands
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badWind
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 19, 2009 8:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Even if your out for a week, or a month, how many ball would you use in that time, and WHY carry the extra weight, I'd rather spend a whole day at home casting than have to carry the mould and ladle.. its that extra food I can't carry...
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D.S. Bradshaw
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Joined: 19 Apr 2009
Posts: 208
Location: Middle Waters, USA
Real Name: D. Scott Bradshaw

PostPosted: Sun Apr 19, 2009 8:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'll try from a different angle; IF you are going to CHOOSE to carry a bag mold; THEN you should also CHOOSE to carry the ladle as well. Would you carry your striker without flint and char? If you are only day-hunting, of course there's no need for it if you feel comfortable leaving it behind.

For the weight, I don't notice any problems in carrying mine. A pound of lead, a half-pound ladle and compareable weight in the mold, two pounds total for the extra shots. Is this really an issue for a healthy human of the period? I'm a 47 year old beat-up busted-up consruction worker and I carry that as well as 20-25 cast rounds in my hunting bag, along with spring vise, turnscrew, flint-wallet, and a pin-punch, and compass. Doesn't give me any pains at all, and I know it's there. I avaeraged 15 pounds in my tool belt everyday for most of 26 years, up and down the ladders a hundred times a day.(when I wasn't welding or some other trade task). What is all this whining about weight? (HeeHee) All in good fun of course.
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