Wednesday, 1 July 2015

Storage of Came

There are a variety of ways of storing lead came.  The best would be storage in air tight containers.  In the absence of that, many solutions are possible.  These are some of the considerations you should be thinking of when constructing your came store.

Straight
You will get the most use from your came if you store it straight.  If you are short of space or don’t have long arms to handle both ends at the same time, you can halve the normal 2 metre lengths. This also makes for shorter storage units.

Container
The surface oxidisation of lead is reduced by keeping it in a container whether box or rainwater pipe for example.  If the ends or top is open, it is a good idea to wrap the came in waxed paper, as that seems to keep the lead better than ordinary paper.
         
Dry
Lead oxidises on the surface quickly in a damp atmosphere. Try to store it in an area that is not subject to condensation.

Ease of extraction
When building your container, think about how easy it will be to extract the lengths of lead, whether by drawing or lifting them out.


The rate of surface oxidisation relates to the purity of the lead.  The more pure the lead the quicker the surface oxidises.  Half hard and hard cames oxidise more slowly.  However it is normal to have to make sure the surface is bright before soldering.  Don’t worry about a bit of oxidisation – it is only the surface and a scrubbing with a brass wire brush at the joints will have the came ready for flux and solder quickly.