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Author: Subject: Making iron filings in pound + quantites easily w/ no contamination
RogueRose
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[*] posted on 5-2-2018 at 03:46
Making iron filings in pound + quantites easily w/ no contamination


I've needed iron filings many times and refuse to pay $16 per lb for something that the scrap yard pays $.02 - $.05 for per lb. that kind of mark-up is higher than the pharmaceutical industry! I've waited to collect them until I figured a way to do it easily and found that I can probably do it with Al, Mg, Pb, Zn, Cu and probably any other metal that I can get in pure form (except those harder than steel).

Now my biggest question is whether I can use filings from steel like low grade stuff like rebar, heavy duty pipe, car axels or parts, (rotors/drums would be good source) etc. in many cases I think the only thing that will be in there will be carbon, but there may be some alloys with small amounts of Si, Mn, Mo, etc (especially if you pick stainless). now IDK if there would ever be any use for filings that have these additives, so LMK if they could be useful anywhere (I have about 30+ lbs of fairly nice silver ware, some non magnetic at all which I thought was special for some reason..)

Well I think a lot of engine blocks and heads are cast iron as well as transmission casings, so those could be a good source of iron if you can handle the weight. Then you have old cookware (pans/pots/etc). Maybe some old fencing. If you find some weights (dumbells and plates) some are cast iron and they are often fairly inexpensive especially if in bad condition. I'd like to hear some good suggestions on sources of pure iron.

My dad had an old contraption (grandpa made??) from the late 30's or sothat was an automated cutting device that moved a hacksaw back and forth with a moveable weight on it to increase downward force. a motor turned a flywheel that had a connecting rod on it that moved the arm back and forth (motor was perpendicular to cutting motion) - sorry no pics. This was great for cutting any metal. clamp in place, drop blade into position, turn on and walk away & it shut off when it dropped through the metal.

here's a vid of something similar to the one my family had
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NEWpC5bVNCg

I no longer have this so I'd make something new and more useful to making filings. I can get 50 12" blades for $6 and I can easily make a carraige that holds 1 - 100 blades stacked together - it would depend on strength of motor how many blades can be used & filing size & speed. Then place the metal under the blade and allow it to chew away the metal. I suspect that a few lbs an hour can be made easily this way, especially if I use the 2hp motor I have.

The only question I have is how to control the size of the filings. I can get blades from 14 - 32 (the 50 for $6 are 24 TPI) and I can control the length of the stroke so the entire blade is used as well as adjustable weight (possibly automatically adjusting while cutting). I don't know what else needs to be taken into consideration besides collecting the filings.

First off, less TPI should give larger filings with "normal" pressure, but what happens with very light pressure, I'm wondering if it would just be scrapings and very fine? IDK if there is a way to effect the filing size.

Is there any need to protect the filings as it is cut? maybe using a cutting oil which would help cutting and provide a protective coating to the filings - though this may be difficult to remove. Then there is using soapy water, but IDK if that can cause oxidation of the filings. Fe is a bit of a strange beast in my eyes when it comes to how it acts some times, but actually it is steels that seem to act strange.

So my biggest concern is the content of the material to be cut and what I specifically need to worry about as well as if filings of things like stainless would be useful.

I'm sure people will say that using a grinder is easier, but I don't want to use a grinder and I don't want foreign content in the filings and I have everything I need to make something like this already, so it makes no sense to build a grinder as it would be more complicated IMO.

Can anyone give any thoughts on how to improve this or things I should be aware of and look out for?
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Ubya
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[*] posted on 5-2-2018 at 09:53


i was thinking something like that to make powdered metals. i have a big chunk of magnesium, and i wanted to make it into a powder, so i tried with a metal file, and it works, but to get maybe 10g you need lots of time and elbow grease. so i thought of building something like a disk sander where a spring pushes the metal part against the grit, but as you said contamination from the sandpaper would be unavoidable. i came to a new idea, the idea you had! but using a file (or an array of files) and not cutting blades. i thing using lots of blades one next to the each other would make yes lots of filings but olso a few bigger pieces, if you plan on sticking together 100 blades it woud make a big file :D
right now i don't have any big motors, i will probably use a small motor with reduction gears.

oxidation could be a problem, but if the powder is not too fine (like really fine) a few hours in air shouldn't be a problem

let's build it!

[Edited on 5-2-2018 by Ubya]





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unionised
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[*] posted on 5-2-2018 at 12:07


This sort of thing?

https://www.ebay.co.uk/b/Power-Hacksaw/42296/bn_59498653
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RogueRose
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[*] posted on 5-2-2018 at 20:18


Quote: Originally posted by unionised  
This sort of thing?

https://www.ebay.co.uk/b/Power-Hacksaw/42296/bn_59498653


Yes very similar to that, the one we had was different but same concept. I think the one we had was home made.

I was trying to figure out how to do aluminum and soft metals and how to get small pieces that could then be milled easily. Very often using a hacksaw on aluminum the teeth get clogged, especially if using something like a sawz-all, as it kind of melts and clogs with ultra fine powder.

Then I tried using a drill press with a 1/2" bit and drilled down through 3/4" x 9" x 13" plate and kept the drill cuttings. This worked well but it takes a lot of man power and can't be automated.

I do know that I can cut the aluminum with a table saw with the proper blade and blade speed. It is possible to a length of that 3/4" plate in about a minute and it produces about as much chips as 40+ mins on the drill press. I used a very high tooth count blade (highest I could find) and it was a standard moly-steel blade that I sharpened with a dremel before and it cut great. Setting up a shop-vac with an in-line filter bag to catch the Al (this is awesome!) sucks away all the cuttings immediately and any vacuum cleaner will work but you have to make an inline filter if you don't have a perfectly clean vacuum cleaner.

It would be possible to use a cheap chop saw/miter saw and do the same thing. I can fit about 7-9 blades on my table saw setup if I wanted to do a wide pass, but I'd need to use the stronger motor than the 1/4 hp on it (my 2hp industrial duty would kick butt!!) The problem is that I just can't use this with iron unless they make metal cutting blades for table saws that aren't diamond or some other abrasive type material.
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Corrosive Joeseph
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[*] posted on 5-2-2018 at 21:20


Electrolytic Iron from Electricity and Fertillizers.......!!!

Electrolysis of ferrous sulfate and ammonium sulfate yielding pure electrolytic iron
https://www.google.com/patents/US4134800

Also.....


'Electrolytic Production of Iron - Chemical Abstracts Vol. 13 (1919)
'Hydrated Fe oxide compounds are suspended in a solution of caustic alkali and the resulting mix is electrolyzed'

That's all it says.....


/CJ




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[*] posted on 5-2-2018 at 23:12


Quote: Originally posted by Corrosive Joeseph  
Electrolysis of ferrous sulfate and ammonium sulfate yielding pure electrolytic iron
https://www.google.com/patents/US4134800



If that works, it would produce iron filings with much lower contamination than ground scrap iron.




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[*] posted on 6-2-2018 at 00:47


If zinc contamination isn't an issue, use galvanized steel wire nails. Add dilute HCl until you notice a color present in the liquid, at which point, remove, the liquid. You now have almost entirely iron, but with some carbon that will need to be removed from the surface by stirring.



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[*] posted on 6-2-2018 at 08:33


Go to your local brake shop and ask them if they will clean out their brake lathe for you. Usually good for a pound or more of fine cast iron (~2.5% C) turnings. Caution - very dirty!
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Corrosive Joeseph
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[*] posted on 6-2-2018 at 09:15


Electrolytic Iron is FOOD GRADE and the method posted above can be done in the biggest plastic bucket as you can find.

Info dump.....


/CJ

Attachment: Electrolytic Iron Powders - Production and Properties.pdf (1.2MB)
This file has been downloaded 107 times




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RogueRose
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[*] posted on 7-2-2018 at 15:52


Quote: Originally posted by Corrosive Joeseph  
Electrolytic Iron is FOOD GRADE and the method posted above can be done in the biggest plastic bucket as you can find.

Info dump.....


/CJ


So what does this do, grow iron crystals on the Cathode and then they can be scraped off and crushed? It's a little hard to read on my phone now. I'm not sure having to do electrolysis is the easist method, but if one need really pure Fe, then this should be a good method.

I know that Cu powder can be made by taking CuSO4 and adding Fe to it but can the same be done by taking FeSO4 and adding something like Zinc? Whenever I've done the Copper thing, the Iron I put in gets plated quickly and then the reaction seems to stop. how does one get around that, use Fe that has lot of surface area?

I want to get into making fine metals from the salts that I've made and am wondering the best steps to start this.

I'll have to look into this as I have both and can get both fairly cheaply. $25/50lb for Ferrous Sulfate and about $12/50lb for ammonium sulfate. I would just need to figure out how much. It sure would be nice to have a reaction where I could mix 2 salts (in solution ) and have Fe precipitate out, if that is possible.
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