recycling steel

In another place I hang out, we're discussing a tower that was toppled by a tornado 25 years ago. Seeing as how this was a
327 ft tower, weighing ~135 tons, that's a lot of bent steel.
But the story is, it was not sellable as scrap because it was galvanized. They ended up burying it on-site!
You guys know lots more about steel than I do, so why is it you can't reuse galvanized steel?
--
A host is a host from coast to snipped-for-privacy@nrk.com
& no one will talk to a host that's close........[v].(301) 56-LINUX
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Sounds like bullshit to me.
Scrap yard that I frequent takes galvanized steel just as well.
They really could not care less.
i
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David Lesher wrote:

25 years ago it was probably not worth enough to cut it up and transport it.
--
Steve W.

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Pretty sure 25 years ago recyclers were buying scrap steel at around $50 / ton
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What what was $50 worth then? Same as $280/ton now...
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Ignoramus18027 wrote:
(...)

Sounds like a "shovel ready" project.
--Winston
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It may have been related to the fact that welding/flame cutting galvanized steel apparently releases very toxic gaseous compounds of zinc, so scrappers may have been reluctant to cut it up -- altho one doesn't normally think of scrappers as being a health-conscious environmental lot.... LOL . May have turned into a kind of scrap urban lore, in some locales. Just guessing....
--
EA



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On Mon, 30 Jan 2012 01:14:22 -0500, "Existential Angst"

Anyone who has ever experienced zinc-fume fever, even a mild case of it (raises hand) doesn't need health-consciousness to know it's bad news. It's like a short-lived case of flu. In severe cases, it can be really nasty. I got a mild dose from welding or brazing (I forget which) EMT, and I don't want to experience it again.
Today, there are throw-away masks that can protect you from it. 3M makes one, or did. I bought a few around 10 years ago. Ordinary dust masks and solvent-fume filters won't do it.
--
Ed Huntress (yes, I'm coming to Yonkers soon)


>. May have turned into a kind of scrap urban lore, in some locales. Just
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Ed the OSHA web site calls it metal fume fever. http://www.osha.gov/doc/outreachtraining/htmlfiles/weldhlth.html And their description follows; Zinc is used in large quantities in the manufacture of brass, galvanized metals, and various other alloys. Inhalation of zinc oxide fumes can occur when welding or cutting on zinc-coated metals. Exposure to these fumes is known to cause metal fume fever. Symptoms of metal fume fever are very similar to those of common influenza. They include fever (rarely exceeding 102o F), chills, nausea, dryness of the throat, cough, fatigue, and general weakness and aching of the head and body. The victim may sweat profusely for a few hours, after which the body temperature begins to return to normal. The symptoms of metal fume fever have rarely, if ever, lasted beyond 24 hours. The subject can then appear to be more susceptible to the onset of this condition on Mondays or on weekdays following a holiday than they are on other days.
I find it interesting they made comment to it's effects relative to Mondays or holidays. Someone in OSHA has a sense of humor. ignator
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On Mon, 30 Jan 2012 23:00:55 -0800 (PST), ignator

Ha-ha! Yes, that's funny.
The description sounds familiar. Fortunately for me, I didn't get a bad dose of it. I didn't have a fever, but it felt like the flu otherwise.
--
Ed Huntress

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Ed Huntress wrote:

(...)
I remove the zinc coating from galvanized pipe by allowing the ends to soak in straight muriatic (pool) acid for a few minutes, then neutralize with a water and baking soda solution followed by a water rinse.
The vapor created by the soak is hot, plentiful and Very Nasty smelling, so I only do this outside whilst standing upwind.
The resulting steel welds really well. I've avoided zinc fever so far.
The fumes created by gas cutting powder - coated steel left my nose offline for most of a year, though.
(Don't do that.) :)
--Winston
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wrote:

Around 8 or so years ago we discussed the subject here, after I'd complained about the fume fever, and someone -- maybe you -- recommended that treatment.
So I cut off some one-foot test pieces of EMT and stood them up in a plastic peanut butter jar, and poured muriatic acid around them to a depth of xix inches or so. The galvanizing stripped off in minutes.
Someone in the discussion had recommended against the baking soda because he said it could form a salt that would stay in the pores of the steel. So, just for a test, I simply rinsed the EMT off, scrubbing good with a fiber brush, dried them, and stuck them on a shelf in my dampish basement to see what happened. Until I had a really serious flood last fall, there wasn't a speck of rust on them. They were still shiny steel. Now one side of the pieces have a slight blush of rust.
Unfortunately, I haven't welded EMT since that day. d8-(. I had just been using it for practice, anyway.

Yeah, I did it outside. I will not open a container of hydrochloric acid in the same room with my machine tools -- or anything else I don't want to rust.

I'll try to remember that.
--
Ed Huntress
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Ed Huntress wrote:

(...)
I'd forgotten that. I'll drop the 'baking soda solution step' and use an aggressive scrub with clear water next time.

Yes. That is hugely important.
I stored my jug of HCl solution in a garden shed away from machine tools.

--Winston
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The caustic soda (NaOH) in drain cleaner also removes zinc, without affecting the steel. The CO2 in the air converts any lye you didn't remove into washing (Na2CO3) or baking (NaHCO3) soda. All are mildly protective of the steel, but not enough for outdoor use. You can see the difference between the silvery zinc and greyish steel to tell when it's done.
Drain cleaner doesn't release any fumes to damage your lungs or machinery. Spilled HCl can be more dangerous than other strong acids because it soaks in rather than reacting immediately with the outer layer of dead skin.
jsw
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On Tue, 31 Jan 2012 11:26:13 -0500, "Jim Wilkins"

Yeah, I've been meaning to try that, but I never got around to it. Maybe this spring.
--
Ed Huntress

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Jim Wilkins wrote:

A quick heads up would be to check the ingredients before buying the drain cleaner as my neighbour bought some, I'm in the UK, and found that the main ingredient was sulphuric acid. My neighbour took the drain cleaner back where he bought it for a refund, as it was expensive, and he already had quite a quantity of sulphuric acid that he had bought to make pickling solution for his loco construction. Not all drain cleaners in the UK are sulphuric acid based though, many are caustic soda which is readily available for the purpose.
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On Tue, 31 Jan 2012 18:13:31 +0000, David Billington

In the US, there appears to be only one brand of over-the-counter drain cleaner that is straight, powder NaOH (lye). It's Roebic Crystal Drain Opener, and the main (or sole?) retail outlet is Lowe's.
However, there are soap-making-supply companies that sell lye over the Internet, and it's much cheaper. The trouble is that small quantities tend to eat up any savings with shipping costs.
I buy from Essential Depot:
http://www.essentialdepot.com /
They've given me very good service, although I haven't bought any larger quantities of lye for about a year.
--
Ed Huntress

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Ed Huntress wrote:
(...)

http://www.essentialdepot.com/servlet/the-75/10-lbs-Technical-Grade/Detail
32 smackers for 10 lbs NaOH in 5 - 2 lb bottles. Free Shipping!
Is that a good deal Ed? My local Lowe's does not admit to selling any kind of lye on their website but I have not called them yet.
http://www.countryfarm-lifestyles.com/make-lye.html
Hmmm.
--Winston
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wrote:

Yeah, that's good. $3/pound delivered is what I expect to pay. Sometimes they offer big discounts to their e-mail list, but you might wait for months.
Note that they're now selling 2-pound bottles for $1.99. I didn't check shipping to your area, but you'll probably find that the 10-pound/free-shipping deal is better.

Go to Lowe's site and search for "Crystal drain opener." You'll see two brands. One is Roebic, which is the one you want. Two pounds for $11.69 in my neighborhood.
I used lots of lye to clean the 80-year-old cast-iron drains in my house, but I've been slowly replacing them with plastic, so I don't buy quantities these days. Mostly I use it for producing a matte finish on homemade aluminum radio chassis (another thing I haven't done for a few years), and as an ingredient in Ted Edward's E-clean electrolytic cleaner/de-ruster:
http://metalworking.com/dropbox/_1999_retired_files/E-CLEAN.TXT
I love that stuff.
--
Ed Huntress


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Ed Huntress wrote:

(...)
Yup. With shipping to me, the two pounder goes for ~$9.00 a lb! Still, a much better deal than Lowe's.

Yes, I see it now. It's $12.24 for the two pounder here. Thanks!

It works a treat, even if you use plain washing soda.
--Winston
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