Ladle casting for the first time!


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Be advised that anyone going with a Rowell, will need to shorten up the handle for better ergonomics. Don't know why they make them so long.


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I believe my Rowell is a one pound model. I had to shorten the handle a bunch right off the bat, but I can fill all 10 cavities in my H+G#50 in one pour and have a lot left over. It's great for that or making ingots. I prefer a smaller ladle for "regular sized" moulds, including 4 cavs.


Staff member
Yeah, I shortened mine very soon after getting it many years ago, suits me much better. It does at least to me seem a bit awkward as long as they make them. Probably a personal taste thing though. It's a really easy fix for anyone wanting to shorten it, just un-screw it from the ladle bowl, cut a length off the rod and re-thread the end, screw back into the ladle bowl.

Kevin Stenberg

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Well I have had good luck with my Lee 4-20. But it just took a nose dive. So you guys talked me into ordering a ladle along with the new heating coil.
A little thread drift if I may. I sit when I cast (bum knees) so at what height do you like the top of the pot to be. I will be making a designated ladle stand. I was thinking it would be best at normal dinning table height.
Thanks for all the advice guys.
I will order a Rowell #1 I think the #2 will be to big for my pot.
I have to work a 12 day shift we have a boat show this next weekend so no time to cast but I will be ready to give it a go in two weeks.

Thank you


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I cast out doors and use a Black and Decker Workmate as my table with a piece of OSB clamped on. I too, sit because of bum knees. The nice thing about the Workmate is it can be set at two different heights. Currently, I have it set for ladle casting. Table height is 24 inches. When I bottom pour, I unfold the legs and table height is @ 35 inches. I use a bar stool height chair when ladle casting and a normal height chair for bottom pouring.....that puts my eyes, near spout level.


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being able to see the lead is my main objective.
I like to look down on the ladle pot, and in at the pour stream on the bottom pour.
if you get the ladle pour too low it will kill your back.
I generally use a little folding table with a piece of plywood over it and a couple of 4x4's with another piece of plywood on the top and the bottom to lift the pot up for ladle work.
this gets everything up to about elbow height and prevents me from stooping over.


Well-Known Member
The most comfortable ladle-casting height for me is to sit in a secretary's office chair (no arms, straight back) set so my thighs are parallel to the ground, and position the pot so the top edge is a few inches above my knees, and pretty much between them. You may want to wear a leather apron to protect your knees and lap from drips and splatters.

The reason for the #2 ladle is having excess volume so the metal doesn't cool off much between the first cavity and the next ones. It also gives you a large excess to keep streaming across the sprue plate, keeping the sprues molten until the bullets have fully set. I like to "wash out" the sprue wells with molten metal for a few seconds after pouring each one to ensure bubbles can get out and the bases are fully filled.
Even with my little ladle I have found that washout of the Cavity during pouring is the real magic.
If you just fill it it’s not much better than a bottom pour.


Staff member
Washout=overflow, correct? Thanks
What I do is when the cavity is full I keep on pouring into it letting it flow over the side of the mold, then moving on to the next cavity the same way, if the ladle isn't empty pour back over all cavities again. As Brad mentioned mold temp is easier to maintain but just as important is sprue plate temp.
I agree on the sprue plate temp being easier to hold by pouring excess alloy over the top. When the mould is up to temp only a tiny fraction of the excess clings to the mould, the screw slot being favorite hiding place. A quick knock with the mallet usually dislodges it at the end of the session if I remember to do it while the mould is nice and hot.