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Lee Bottom Pour Maintenance/cleaning

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Over time, I guess all the Lee bottom pours can get a bit problematic. This morning I had trouble with the spout and decided to take it apart and clean it. First time doing this and ran into an issue trying to figure out just how to clean the seat area for the plunger. Just wondered what others have done to clean this area. In addition to this, I would like to hear some of your cleaning techniques and tools for the other parts of your Lee Pots. TIA.

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The way I clean my pot is like this. I empty all of the lead into mini muffin pans or something where it will fit back into the pot again. Unplug the pot and it will slowly start to cool. I then wait a bit for the cool down. I try to work with a warm pot as it is easier to clean, so don't wait till it gets cold. Also, I put on cotton gloves to protect my hands. Unscrew the plunger and set it aside. Take some abrasive steel wool and clean out the inside of the pot walls and the bottom of the pot. Next clean out the hole by gently rubbing steel wool into it. It will come out really well. Once that is done, clean the tip of your plunger by rubbing it with steel wool. Empty all contents of pot. Screw in plunger and then fire it up and put your lead in. Should be as good as new. 

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I do mostly the same as Ted.  I like to finish mine off after it cools with a coat of WD-40.   Let it set for a while then wipe it off before I reheat the pot.  I also take a small drill bit and gently work it with a pair of pliers into the drain hole and clean it out.

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When I clean out my pot, I take a drill bit same size as pour spout and ream it out there is a lot of rust that comes out,my pot hardly drips after. 

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On 3/16/2019 at 4:39 PM, mark poulson said:

Ted, 

Could you chuck the plunger into a drill and use it to rotate your steel wool in the hole to clean it out?

Mark,

Yes you could use steel wool, and put it on a drill, I do it by hand, because if my memory is correct, the spout with the hole is made out of brass and is soft. Doing it by hand lessens the chance of me damaging the spout and hole. It doesn't take much effort to clean the pot. It takes more time to empty the lead safely and letting the pot cool a bit so you can clean it.

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Use lapping compound w/ the plunger on a drill@ low speed. Check the plunger end frequently for complete polishing and proper alignment.You;ll see the plunger end completely polished when you have completed the process.

 

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I gave up and bought a ladle to pour with out of frustration. Tired of spending more time cleaning the pot than pouring baits.

 

Allen

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2 hours ago, Munkin said:

I gave up and bought a ladle to pour with out of frustration. Tired of spending more time cleaning the pot than pouring baits.

 

Allen

I started with a Ladle pour pot and always thought it would be nice to have a bottom pour. Bought one lightly used and I really abused it by never cleaning it and it’s  been 3+ years without cleaning.  They can take some abuse and lack of maintenance. Mine is proof positive.

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My old 10lb lee I had to clean all the time. I would take it apart and run a brass bristle brush chucked in a drill with a couple extensions on the plunger seat to remove gunk.. then I wire wheeled the steel plunger. It would make the pot run smooth as butter for a while. 

I switched to the 20lb lee a few years back and haven't had to clean it once. Never drips when up to temp and almost always smooth flow. I do have a piece of steel wire that I run up the spout from the bottom with pliers to knock out any junk in there if the flow gets restricted. Takes 3 second and back to good again. But have never even emptied the thing in the years I've owned it. I pour down to half a pot and then stop and refill until 3/4 and go again. Always refilling to 3/4 before shutting it off. 

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I run a piece of .040 wire up from the bottom occasionally to keep the flow going and when it starts to drip I grab the top of the plunger with my pliers and give it a couple of quick twists with slight pressure and go back to pouring.

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