Poisonous Metals

Post your thoughts and ideas on safety here.
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Post by onestrangeguy »

We've all probably picked up a lead fishing weight, and haven't died from it. Myabe Hanol has picked up a few more than the rest of us though :wink:
I think most of us can agree that lead, mercury, and plutonium are metals that are beneficial to mankind, but best left alone in our daily lives.
Cant we leave it at (Or near) that, and get on with other things?
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Post by Hanol »

I found couple more guidelines. From a friend who is dealing with lead all the time. It's kinda complex overall, but anyway here's the simple form. Lead is very reactive metal like aluminum. It can easily form different chemical compounds when subjected to water, oxygen and acids. In pure form it's silver white. When oxidized - it's dark gray. And it's this dark gray stuff you don't want to take into you mouth.
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Post by Mc_ntk »

So now I am back at college again XD anyways I made a depleted uranium mouthgag (cost me a fortune to get the glass with the uranium and to have a custom hole drilled for the strap). Now how is that for unsafe? But seriously it was the coolest bondage session I had with only a ball gag for light... :lol:

But seriously uranium is dangerous and don't play with any amount no matter what ppm!
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Post by Lost Soul »

If I remember my basic chemistry correctly, there are 35 different heavy metals which can be toxic if enough is introduced into the body. This includes, Iron, Mercury, Nickel, Titanium, Silver, and Gold, just to name a few of the more common ones.

Yes, you can absorb trace amounts through your skin, but the key word in this sentence is Trace. There is an upper limit of how much your body can tolerate, and when you pass it, you get heavy metal toxicity.The majority of deaths from heavy metal poisoning are due to inhalation or ingestion, which introduce the toxin into the body much more rapidly.

Also, bear in mind that most of these metals have different forms, usually elemental (naturally occurring), and a man-made variety as well. The man-made variety is usually more toxic. Big shocker there, huh?

Bottom line is what Jenny and a couple others have already said. Everything in moderation, use as directed, and exercise common sense.
This is something everyone has to decide for themselves:
How badly do you want it? How badly are you willing to be burned to get it?
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Re: Poisonous Metals

Post by subwayne »

Hey guys im just going to chime in here as well.

in most of my jobs I worked with lead, mostly soldering (im an aussie boy and it seems we could be behind the times on the solder front), when i started with my current employer who do chrome plating, which uses a lead annoide (pretty much a lead cage) as part of the process, which was what i was employed to make... the company gets everyone tested quarterly for lead levels and a few other things. due to my long term exposier I did have a lead level high enough for them to have to take me outa of the "lead shed". but they only work to the lowest level by australilan law (pregnat and breast feeding ladies)

for the few or was it one person saying its not dangerious, on a random skin touching type basis... its not overly... but say lead paint on your house walls would be very bad for you in the long run, in my case years of soldering, it had my lead levels at a higher level that I would have liked.

a Few things long term exposier to lead can cause as far as im aware is, brain damage, infertility (both male and female) and birth defects... once you get lead into your system it can take years to come out :(

as a few others has said, alot of heavy metals are bad for you, so even skin contact is bad, if you come in contact with anything that you might suspect is a heavy metal. please was your hands asap, for those IT professions out there, things like cpu compound contains heavy metals.

so BDSM toys outa lead is bad mmmkay /mr macky
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Re: Poisonous Metals

Post by Handcuffs »

If you happen to have an Iron :gag:, make sure you give it an extra polish. I learned in my organic chem class last Thursday that Iron Oxide FeO(rust) even in small amounts is very bad for the liver.

Play safe!
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Re: Poisonous Metals

Post by bound_jenny »

In that case I'll steer clear of my neighbor's K-car... :mrgreen:

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Re: Poisonous Metals

Post by ello »

I'm currentlin studying physics..... and I learned why militaries use lead one it is in fact one of the cheapest metals available (someone stated that it is really expensive, this is due to taxation to allow more for military and other use) and the second reason is because like someone said it is a soft metal..... When the bullet is shot out of a gun the metal will hit its target, it will then tend to flatten....creating a larger surface area to cause more damage. This is why if you ever see pictures the entrance wound is smaller than the exit wound..... the truth is a military would not want someone to die slower and die of toxic affects, which isnt the reason they use lead.
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Re: Poisonous Metals

Post by Sissy_Mikki »

I agree with the above post. Although in the UK there is less & less lead being used, as in fish weights, etc. as we are becoming a Nanny State. With to much emphasis on Health & Safety. I know you do need H & S but they are taking away our own use of Sensibility.
Play Same Mike
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Re: Poisonous Metals

Post by Sissy_Mikki »

Sorry that should say "play Safe"
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Re: Poisonous Metals

Post by scarfbind »

The danger from lead is mostly due to vapors while it is in a molten state. Neurological damage from lead exposure used to be a very real occupational hazard in the printing industry, where press workers could spend 40 hours a week inhaling toxic fumes. Mercury poses similar dangers, though I believe at an even higher level (possibly since it remains molten at all temperatures a person is likely to encounter it)

Simply handling lead is unlikely to cause harm, unless you are doing it hour upon hour, year after year, and are handling your food without washing your hands. Again, it is the vapor or ingestion that is hazardous. Merely coming into physical contact with the metal is a trivial risk (with the exception of people who are handling it for a living, and women who are pregnant or may become pregnant)

Those who make their own ammo could face some exposure, though unless they're pouring thousands of bullets every week in a poorly-ventilated area, the risk would be minimal. Younger people are more sensitive than older people, and have more time to suffer cumulative effects.

I think the original post was about lead fishing weights being used as insertables, which sounds to me like a bad idea for quite a number of reasons, toxicity being about #7 on the list.
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Re: Poisonous Metals

Post by tiemeupalso »

all the fear about toxic metals and being exposed to them i believe is over done.
ive known people that have been reloading ammo for decades and have no effects.
i have a b ullet in me that has been there almost 45 years.no problems here.
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Re: Poisonous Metals

Post by Sir Cumference »

Quite a necro-post, but I'll add a bit anyway.

Lead and bullets: Lead is great for projectiles because it is easy to shape by melting or swaging, it is relatively cheap and it has a high density. A lot of other metals can beat lead on one or two of these, but none is superior on all three points.
Toxicity is irrelevant when talking lead projectiles. You need the effect to take place in seconds or minutes, not in a couple of years.

It is well documented that lead and especially water and fat soluble lead compounds are toxic. But to hurt you, it has to enter your body in some way.
- inhalation
- ingestion
- through the skin
Are the main routes, with inhalation and ingestion being the most efficient. Our skin is designed to be a barrier to the world, the lungs and intestines to actively absorb things.

Metallic lead is not very soluble, but it will spontaneously form carbonates and oxides on the surface. These are more or less soluble, but will dissolve in the acid in your stomach. Handling lead and forgetting to wash your hands before eating, puts you at risk.
Breathing lead dust was a serious risk at foundries casting lead containing alloys. Workers cutting up scrap metal, either containing lead or painted with lead paint have also supplied interesting cases.
Another route to inhalation are indoor firing ranges with inadequate ventilation. Projectiles hitting steel backstops will shatter and the lead containing primer compounds produce a cloud of lead particles at the firing line.
I know a couple of instructors who have had "too high" levels of lead when they were tested.

Organic or inorganic?
Carbonates, nitrates, sulfates, oxides and other inorganic lead compounds are toxic, but will often react to form insoluble compounds. A lead bullet in neutral soil will form a white insoluble crust, and stay that way for centuries.
Organic lead compounds is another story. They are soluble in non-polar phases, in the body that translates to fatty tissue, blubber, nerves and the brain. You really don't want any nerve damage!
In the bad old days whem tetraethyllead was added to gasoline, large amounts of lead oxide was released from cars, and banning TEL in gasoline caused a sharp drop in the lead blood levels.

Common sense and hygiene should be used when handling lead.

Nickel is a funny metal. Shiny, hard, relatively cheap, easy to electroplate on almost anything....... And it can cause a really nasty allergy in some people.
And once you have the allergy, it stays with you!
In the EU, it is forbidden to use nickel compounds (that can release nickel, many stainless steels do not, even though they contain lots of nickel) in objects intended to be in contact with the skin, such as jewelry and buttons.
The risk of allergy should be taken very seriously.
If you are predisposed, you may develop an allergy, but you can't say how much is needed to do it.

You should not eat the oxidation on copper and brass. Copper compounds are toxic, but not nearly as bad as lead.
Clean brass and bronze is pretty safe.

Iron and stainless steel is safe too, but can pose a risk when welding or grinding.

Tin and low-lead pewter is perfectly safe too (some of the organic tin compounds on the other hand are very toxic!)

Aluminium is safe, but the safety of aluminium compounds is a topic of discussion. The acute toxicity is relatively low, but there are some studies raising concerns about long term effects...... I'm not worried.

But it is not always straight forward.
The effect will depend on what you are exposed to, how much, for how long and to some degree who you are.

To be quite honest, I think we should be more concerned about the plastizisers, flame retardent and Perfluoro-compounds we are exposed to.
~ Leatherworking, blacksmithing , woodworking and programming are the most pervertable skills you can learn! ~
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Re: Poisonous Metals

Post by BustaNut »

I found a good list of toxic metals and metal compounds
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Re: Poisonous Metals

Post by Blacky »

BustaNut wrote:I found a good list of toxic metals and metal compounds
Please be aware that the list you found is far, far from comprehensive! There are some highly toxic metals missing (e.g. the Actinoids), and, what's more important, there are a lot of organometallic substances that are extremely poisonous (TBT, Organolead compounds, methylmercury ...).

In case you are really looking for in depth information on substances you might want to take a look at this:
http://gestis-en.itrust.de/nxt/gateway. ... sdbeng$3.0

Kind regards,

If the doors of perception were cleansed everything would appear to man as it is, infinite. (W. Blake)
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