Look for sporting goods stores that provide reloading supplies. Those catering to skeet or bird hunters are a good bet. There are online suppliers, too, but beware of the shipping costs of lead!
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Finding lead shot is harder than it used to be, because the hunting laws changed some years ago to prohibit the use of lead shot. Lead shot was causing poisoning to water fowl, who were eating the shot that accumulated on the bottoms of ponds, etc., where hunting took place. Lead shot was replaced by steel shot, although lead shot is still used by some skeet shooters. Your best bet is to contact stores that specialize in re-loading supplies. If you can't find what you want, I have 50 pounds of lead shot mixed with sand that I recently removed from a pair of Sound Anchor speaker stands. If you want to buy my "mix", call me at (206)-732-1223 (Seattle), or send me an E-mail at [email protected] Thanks, Scott
Please don't consider this to be an expert opinion because it's not, but here goes anyway. I'd go with the lead shot due to it's higher density over sand, though some use both. Though it might be obvious, the larger the designation the smaller the shot size (number of pellets to the ounce?). Number 11 is the smallest I remember ever seeing, though something like number 9 might be easier to find. My guess would be to buy the smallest shot available as it will settle more tightly. Hopefully someone with first hand knowledge will correct me if any of that is wrong.
Try a wed site www.trapshooters.com. They have lists of stores with reloading supplies. I would suggest #8 or 9 shot - they are smaller and will fill all of the voides in the speaker stands. Also, try the yellow pages in your area for "gun clubs, trap ranges, skeet ranges, sporting clays" These clubs usually have lead shot for sale in 25# bags.
JBM, what was the difference you noticed? Has anyone else tried filling their stands with lead vs. sand vs. lead/sand? I'm especially interested in comparisons involving filled equipment racks instead of stands, too? Any appreciable difference there or is density and stability more important with racks?
Thanks for all the great ideas. I was only able to find one store in the Dallas area that carried a substantial amount (i.e. bags) of shot, the smallest being 10gu. It was a pretty good distance however and paying for shipping from another destination seems like a little more $$$ than I would want to justify. I decided to create a mix of gravel and sand. Standard fare at Home Depot - sterilized childrens play sand @ $2.50/50lb bag and a 50 lb bag of gravel for about $3.00. I used 150# total or 75# per side. I finished up late last night, after feeling like a hourglass - I'll probably require traction for about a week!! I'll follow-up and let you all know how it worked out. Thanks again for all support and responses! You guys are great!
Here's where I will be getting my lead- www.welcocastings.com.(a Canadian lead manufacturer/distributor- they will ship around the world) I am actually going to do the ultimate- a 'hot lead pour' into my speaker stands. Welco can do this, they actually mix 3% antimony (an impurity) into the hot lead- the antimony helps avoid shrinkage from a lead-only pour. I can't even imagine how heavy the stands will be after that!! Sounds like a rather exotic solution, but hey, why not?- you just can't beat lead for resonance dampening- good luck! Oh- btw- Welco also sells individual pieces of lead- I am going to pick up a couple of their 'diving weights' (lead with a rubber coating) for use on top of an outboard power supply, with Isobearings under the power supply- it works!!
Thanks for that website Sutts it may come in handy in the future. I went ahead and used the sand and pea-gravel mix, about 60lbs per side. The stands are filled about 2/3 full. I should mention the "stands" are cubed wooden enclosures - I couldn't find a speaker stand with a wide enough footprint. They rest upon Mod Squad Tip Toes that by now have found their tips through the carpet and pad to the foundation (my wife loves that -HeHe). The first thing I noticed was a much more focused sound stage and a tighter bass. Unfortunately, I also lost a lost of mid/low bass. I use a subwoofer crossed over @ 85Hz (non-adjustable on this Velodyne model). It main speakers seem to have dropped a little "power" at around 100Hz, before the sub picks up. While I may have grown accustomed to the coloration my prior stands (end tables) helped create with my speaker, I don't know that I like it. Guess I'll have to give it more time and play with it. Ain't this a fine hobby fellas? It's always something!!!