lee 4 Pro Pot Leaks (not from the spout

  • Last Post 22 March 2011
rhouser posted this 28 February 2011

The entire plug (that the valve rod passes through) is lifting on my new Lee pot (first use).  This is not the drip that you can adjust with the screws.  I was able to reseat the plug to stop the flow, but, not till I and dumped almost two pounds of lead onto the RCBS ingot mold that was serving to catch the drips.  I got the flow stopped by banging the rod with my screw driver handle.  I tried it again and first it poured correctly through the valve, then the entire valve plug lifted again and I had to bang the plug back down (3/8 inch plug lifting will move a lot of hot lead quickly.)

Has anyone had this happen before?  I don't want to try to stake it.  I will call the Lee service number this morning.  I have no IDEA what happened. 

This newbee thing is tough.  thanks rc

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RicinYakima posted this 28 February 2011

My experiences with lee pots:

  1. nozzle is freezing alloy, it is about 40 degrees colder than the crucible body unless you are pouring lots of alloy each time. Turn the heat up.

  2. dross is holding it up. How long since you emptied the pot and cleaned it?


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Dale53 posted this 28 February 2011

Rich; The OP mentions that the Lee pot is NEW (first use).

If that is the case then a call to Lee would be next on my list.


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rhouser posted this 28 February 2011

This was the first time I used the pot but it was after I added more lead. Is it normal to actually lift the “plug” out of the Pot Body? I am not talking about the rod that controls the flow through the nozzle, but, the whole nozzle assembly itself? I hate to think I broke it first time out, but, maybe I did. I am calling Lee now. thanks to all. rc

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delmarskid1 posted this 28 February 2011

Have you checked the screws at the top that hold down the operating lever? They could be pinching. I like to lap in my valve rod but I doubt if that is your problem. I would see if something is binding the valve.

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rhouser posted this 01 March 2011

I called Lee Service department and they advised that I should return the pot. The entire valve assembly has pulled out. While some of their models do have a threaded valve that is held in place by a nut on the underside of the pot, my model does not. According to the service person I talked to, the valve on mine is pressure seated with a hammer and should not be pulling out.

Question at this point: Should I just return this pot and spend the extra money on an RCBS or a Lyman bottom pour. I could buy 5 Lees for the cost of a single RCBS pot, but, maybe the valve wouldn't pull out on the first run...

What is everyone else using?

thanks rc

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RicinYakima posted this 01 March 2011

Well, even though I have others, I still dip with my Lee. The normal drips, fixed with a plug, but a good pot. The only bad thing is the the thermostats are the cheapest things made and have 100 degree temperature swings. You can solve that with a Haarmann digital control (see copy of Fouling Shot) for about 1/2 what a new high quality pot costs. Ric

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rhouser posted this 02 March 2011

Ric, I am waiting for my very first copy of the Fouling Shot. Is there an easy version of the Haarmann digital control? Is there an article archive somewhere? thanks rc

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RicinYakima posted this 02 March 2011

Mr. Harman is in the hospital was I write, new knee on Monday. How many he has made ahead I do not know. PM me your email address and I will dig through my old files and send you an article I wrote on the original model. The new ones are only about 1/4 as large as the first models. Ric

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Bob 11B50 posted this 20 March 2011


I use a Lee, Lyman, and a Waage from Bill Berguson.  I'd sure like to get one of those Haagman thermostat items you mentioned.  I've had one Lyman go south because of a bad thermostat and they told me that they didn't have any thermostats to sell me.  The Waage from Bill is just great.  I really like it.  But, I'd sure like a spare thermostat or arrangements such as you mentioned on hand for the Lee. 


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rhouser posted this 21 March 2011

My final on my Lee was to return it for refund. Ordered the RCBS. thanks rc

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corerf posted this 21 March 2011


I have had my Lee for about 3 years now. It has some idiosyncrasies with the valve and some screws loosening from heat/cool cycles but it ahs been pretty good.

Then I did an estate buy and got a lyman master caster. Engineered completely different, and better. A step up, long step up.

But I still use the Lee and it works pretty well aside from an occasional tweak.

The lyman, no tweaking.

You made the best choice, even though I like Lee products for the most part..... it was a wise choice.

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Fg1 posted this 22 March 2011

I think what he was talking about was the nozzle at bottem of pot that the lead comes out of . I noticed a bit of lead in the cover of mine dripping out and wondered if mine was leaking where the nozzle was swaged into the pot . I imagine all the heat flucuation , heating and cooling over the years the swage could have loosened . If thats the case I will take it apart and either wirefeed weld or braze it solid !

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rhouser posted this 22 March 2011

FG1, that is exactly it. Mine had no swaging. When the entire valve pulled free, the pot didn't drip, it poured out about a pound of molten lead by the time I got the valve back in place.

I am NOT bad mouthing Lee or Lee Pots. I just want one that works for me. As a new caster I have enough challanges already without my pot being one of them. Thanks to All. RC

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frank l jr posted this 22 March 2011

hey rhouser, just a coment, if you buy the rcbs, your troubles are over. i've been using a used one for about 20 yrs. also have several lee pots, ok but not the real mc coy.when i go to serious casting, guess which one i turn on?? am working on a controler system to regulate just a bit tighter on the temp flucuations. see ya frank l jr

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