Just took off the aluminum siding on the front of my house. I don't know if
it's worth the gasoline to drive it to the scrap metal dealer. I probably
have about 20 lbs.
Is this siding aluminum suitable for melting and casting?
Another question. My wife has three kilns. They go up to about 2000° F.
Can I just simply snip up a bunch of siding, place it in a cast iron skillet
and put it in one of her kilns? Just wondering.
You are fighting physics. The ratio of surface area to volume of your
siding is far too high and as you melt it, it will form a very large
proportion of various aluminium oxides which will settle out as a
thick layer of dross on the surface of your melt. Melting it
commercially they would plunge it into an already molten pool of
aluminium so as to exclude the air. I found all this out when I
started casting a couple of decades ago and was re-cycling beer cans.
Produced as much dross as aluminium.
Now if you cut your siding into kiln sized pieces in a skillet, and
filled the kiln with an inert gas you'd be fine !
Pretty much what Andrew said, although I'd add that the vessel in which
you'd do the melting wouldn't be a good choice. Molten metals have
considerable solvent power------and will dissolve other metals when well
below their melting points. That principle is used in assaying, where
molten lead, reduced from litharge, collects metals that melt at much higher
temperatures (platinum, for example) and includes them in the button.
Platinum melts well over 3,000 degrees F, yet it is dissolved nicely by the
lead at a much lower temperature.
If your objective were to reduce the aluminum for the sake of the exercise,
a cast iron skillet would work, but you'd be contaminating the aluminum and
altering its characteristics. You would end up with aluminum that is of
poor quality. You'd also likely regret the stink and smoke that came from
the finish on the siding.
Extruded aluminum, or rolled aluminum doesn't cast as well as aluminum
alloyed for the purpose. If your objective is to use the resulting metal
for casting, you'd be far better served to re-melt existing castings, which
are alloyed appropriately and flow much better.
Right now, the scrap market is quite strong. If you have a recycling yard
near, you might be pleasantly surprised to find your material is worth the
trip. It's no retirement plan, but it should buy a nice lunch for you and
On Fri, 05 Oct 2007 06:23:14 GMT, with neither quill nor qualm, "Ivan
Vegvary" quickly quoth:
Oh, sure. And the next time we hear from you, you'll be singing
soprano after the Bobbitting job she did on you. She'll like that as
much as you would like her cutting up the frozen turkey with your
For a hoot, google up "resawed beans" on the Wreck (rec.woodworking
newsgroup.) Then there was that Canuckistani guy who used his 20,000
RPM router for making whipped cream in the kitchen... ;)
Besides, I'm sure you'd have much more fun building your own
propane-fired melting furnace.
Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when
they do it from religious conviction. - Blaise Pascal
Hearing these stories always makes me thankful for the mother and wife that
I have. We ate dinner on TV trays several times when I was in high school,
because I had my S.U. carburetors all in pieces on the dining room table,
and the smell of gasoline was too strong to eat there. And my wife never
complained when I used our oven for bending wood, tempering steel, or curing
industrial A-B cure epoxy.
You have to pick these important people in your life very carefully.
Well divorce works too but it is far more expensive than buying an oven for
the shop. I guess I can consider that last batch of springs I did in the
oven as a discount on the price of the divorce. ;)
On Fri, 05 Oct 2007 09:33:20 -0400, with neither quill nor qualm, Wes
I learned early on that people change in different ways and at
different rates, so marriage doesn't stay together for very long.
(Some exceptions are some of you old farts.)
By my 10th high school reunion, not ONE of the people I'd attended
high school with who'd gotten hitched (during/since high school) was
still married to the same person. Hell, even my parents got divorced
(and remarried to each other a year later.) At age 14, I attended my
grandfather's wedding. That was 8 years after my parent's wedding.
(Oops, that was Grandpa's second marriage. Never mind.)
The cheapest way around a divorce is to shack up with a disclaimer
clause for palimony (unless she supports YOU. ;)
-- I'm in touch with my Inner Curmudgeon. --
I've been real busy of late, and haven't followed that thread due to lack of
time, but I feel that's the point to which he's alluding.
Molten metals are wonderful solvents of other metals. Think how mercury
reacts to form amalgams. That's an excellent opportunity to see it happen
at ambient temperature.
And I just celebrated the 30th anniversary with the 2nd Mrs. W.
Adding that to 14 years with the first one makes for a total of 44 years
of married bliss.
No complaints, the dissolution of my first marriage was an perfect
example of what "clutch" said earlier on this thread:
"I learned early on that people change in different ways and at
different rates, so marriage doesn't stay together for very long."
And, the first spouse and I handled our divorce with courtesy and
respect for each other and we still have a nonacrimonious relationship.
I'm fond of bragging that my first divorce (Which I hope will also be my
only one.) is better than most marriages.
I think that swans are doing better than homo sapiens with regard to
staying mated for life these days. I hear tell that 50% of all marriages
in the last few decades have ended in divorce.
I've had some success with stainless steel cookware (NOT from the
kitchen, nor in the oven :)
I assume this works because stainless protects itself with an inert
layer of oxide, which even the aluminium can't eat.