Straightening lead rod

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Speedster
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Straightening lead rod

Post by Speedster » Mon Dec 19, 2016 12:24 pm

We purchase lead rod, 3/8" by about 5 1/2" for our workshops from our friends at Hodges Hobby house. Each rod weighs close to 4 ounces. Leads density, ease of cutting, and Hodges $1.75 per rod makes it very attractive for use in the workshops.
I am the only one that touches the lead rod. OK, the rods are not perfectly straight but because of Hodges price and the benefits of lead there is no alternative. I have access to a 5" vice. I put the rod in the vice and leave just enough stick out that I can hold the rod. I tighten the vice very gently (rod is very soft) back off the handle just enough to release the rod, turn the rod a bit, tighten vice, turn the rod a bit, etc. The vice will straighten the rod very quickly and any section of the rod will fit in a 25/64" hole. We Bondo the holes, cut the Bondo when it reaches its "spongy" stage, scuff it lightly with 80 grit paper and hand it to the scout. The scout then advances to another station.

We are expecting 90 scouts this year, 30 of them Girl Scouts. We're still recruiting helpers. Of Course, you are all Welcome to join us because I know you are all experienced. In the event you are unable to be with us, Please Pray for us. Thank You.
Cheers,
speedster



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Vitamin K
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Re: Straightening lead rod

Post by Vitamin K » Mon Dec 19, 2016 12:48 pm

Speedster wrote:We purchase lead rod, 3/8" by about 5 1/2" for our workshops from our friends at Hodges Hobby house. Each rod weighs close to 4 ounces. Leads density, ease of cutting, and Hodges $1.75 per rod makes it very attractive for use in the workshops.
I am the only one that touches the lead rod. OK, the rods are not perfectly straight but because of Hodges price and the benefits of lead there is no alternative. I have access to a 5" vice. I put the rod in the vice and leave just enough stick out that I can hold the rod. I tighten the vice very gently (rod is very soft) back off the handle just enough to release the rod, turn the rod a bit, tighten vice, turn the rod a bit, etc. The vice will straighten the rod very quickly and any section of the rod will fit in a 25/64" hole. We Bondo the holes, cut the Bondo when it reaches its "spongy" stage, scuff it lightly with 80 grit paper and hand it to the scout. The scout then advances to another station.

We are expecting 90 scouts this year, 30 of them Girl Scouts. We're still recruiting helpers. Of Course, you are all Welcome to join us because I know you are all experienced. In the event you are unable to be with us, Please Pray for us. Thank You.
Cheers,
speedster
Nice! Sounds like you've got a good system there. I wish I could be there to lend a hand. Got to shake the tree of parent volunteers and hope some more apples drop.

What do you use to cut the lead rod?



Speedster
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Re: Straightening lead rod

Post by Speedster » Tue Dec 20, 2016 5:30 am

Many things will cut it. The lead rod is very soft. I use a pruning shears that has a very sharp replaceable blade but we also use side cuts and sheet metal shears. We also use several of Maximum Velocity's balance stands. They work a lot better than the ones I built.



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Vitamin K
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Re: Straightening lead rod

Post by Vitamin K » Tue Dec 20, 2016 8:08 am

Speedster wrote:Many things will cut it. The lead rod is very soft. I use a pruning shears that has a very sharp replaceable blade but we also use side cuts and sheet metal shears. We also use several of Maximum Velocity's balance stands. They work a lot better than the ones I built.
I guess my main concern with cutting lead is causing the ends of the piece to deform and flatten and thus no longer fitting into the drilled hole. Is this an issue, or is the cut pretty clean?



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whodathunkit
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Re: Straightening lead rod

Post by whodathunkit » Tue Dec 20, 2016 10:12 am

VK,
I've had better luck with cutting
Lead rod using an electricians cable cutter..shear cut type.
For getting clean cuts on the rod.


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Speedster
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Re: Straightening lead rod

Post by Speedster » Tue Dec 20, 2016 5:47 pm

The cut is very clean. I've never had a problem.



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