I was told by a guy that makes a lot of shot that if you use a new muffing pan then it will stick real bad and he had to trash them but he said to let them sit outside in the weather and rust for a couple of weeks then sand them or maybe it was to sand them then sit them out i figured that would make it worse for sticking but he said it will make the lead come right out.
Also he said not to fill it all the way to the top I think he said about 3/4 up because it makes it the right size for melting I thought it was around 2.5 pounds per muffin at that level.
Dale the best advice I can offer is to get the cheap non-stick pans. I've had some trouble at one time or another from just about all the uncoated pans. I use the cheap non-stick ones from the dollar General store and have had zero problems with them.
Sooting the pans with a candle works, but I had a local welder make me some "ingot molds" out of plain 2-inch angle iron. Mine are 10-inch long sections oriented point down with a 4-inch piece welded across each end to act as legs and seal the ends. He made them for a dollar each and nothing sticks to them.
I have cast iron muffin pans for sale at $15.00 each plus shipping (about $5.00). It is a limited supply at this price since they are made to sell for $16.95 plus tax and shipping elsewhere.
Each pan has 6 holes and they are made to last a lifetime. We use them all the time to make our ingots and they don't stick either.
Call 256-587-0107 and ask for Jim
By the way everyones ideas on how to keep the muffin pans from sticking are really good.