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Thread: Can shredding

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
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    1,666

    Post Can shredding

    I would like some ideas on a problem that I have. Any suggestions will be appreciated. Between my beer drinking and others soda pop drinking there are a lot of cans available for my metal casting habits. I don't like crushing cans because the size and shapes are so varied. I've been thinking of making a can shredder that I can set up on my lathe. My current consept is a tube that leads to a drum on the lathe that has carbide bits that shread the cans in short order. The drum design must not load up with the gummy aluminum and the shreaded aluminum should go out of a shoot into a bag or a can. The best design would allow for a big hopper that would take a trash can full of alumimun cans and the lathe would just grind them into shreds.
    A lubricant may be necessary to keep the edges from loading up.

    Any Ideas?

    Thanks,

    Spence

  2. #2
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    Arizona
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  3. #3
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    On the Oil Coast,USA
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    Here local they use a hammer mill at one yard and a converted limb shredder at another,both big monsters.I would bet a common lawn mower with a modified blade would do the trick,it would make a little noise though.

    Another alternative would be a briquett spike in a press,basically a male spike and a female cone mounted in an over grown can smasher,you keep pushing one down on top of another until 20 cans take up the size of one and it still gets rid of the mositure in the can.Just a thought.
    I just need one more tool,just one!

  4. #4
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    Feb 2002
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    Spence: Several years ago,friend and i discussed same problem. The residue in the cans is reason enough to not use the lathe. We discussed shredders, even a furnace that would come on, melt the cans weekly (idea rejected but not for moisture problems), finally he built a machine holding two rubber tired automobile wheels,running tread to tread. a loading chute fed the cans, tires flattened them. Garbage can caught them.

    It worked, tire pressures were less than 30 psi but did take some adjustments. The machine was too big for the shop ( can volume did not justify the storage room). Modifications were more fun after a few cans of beer and contemplation of the problem- For example: When tilted back to 45 degrees launch angle, direct drive from a 1/2 hp motor, you can feed one can at a time and put cans in a collection can (Garbage can) on the far side of the shop. Trick is to put the collection can where the cans are going, rather than adjusting the launch machine. (sort of like shooting at a barn and painting a bullseye around the hole)

    ANy way, two tire, tread to tread, belt drive (direct drive lacks torque to handle multiple cans) and rain coat (the partial cans spray considerable distance).

    Friend died, this machine was one of our notable failures to solve all the worlds problems. Old steel beer cans were better- man could develop a grip by crushing them.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
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    Southwest Georgia, USA
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    Post

    I woouldn't do it on a lathe, but a gang of old carbide-tipped dado blades on a common shaft should do a pretty good job. Use the ones with a small number of teeth which normally go between the finer-cutting blades to clear the middle of the dado. Have heavy stationary fingers between the blades, but not too close. Run the blades so they are coming up as they hit the can so the uncut portion will fall back to be hit again.

    Hope that's not too much of a "whacko" idea.

    Roger

    [This message has been edited by winchman (edited 04-23-2004).]
    Any products mentioned in my posts have been endorsed by their manufacturer.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
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    Post

    Docsteve, the images are priceless. I can see some buddies and I building a machine like that sometime in the past if we'd had the raw materials. Great Story, thanks.

    John

    ------------------
    Pursue Excellence and the rest will follow.

    [This message has been edited by Excitable Boy (edited 04-24-2004).]

    [This message has been edited by Excitable Boy (edited 04-24-2004).]
    Pursue Excellence and the rest will follow.

  7. #7
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    Mar 2004
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    Sheboygan Falls
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    Post

    I'm sure you guys know all about the danger of water and melting scrap. I just think it is ironic that the aluminum die cast company were I work we are not allowed to bring in aluminum cans for lunch. All the soda machines dispence cups. This is because wet or potentially wet scrap is kept sepparate and run through a drier first. If something wet is in the regularly dry scrap from the die cast machines it could cause an explosion of molten aluminum at the melting furnace. The weight of all the rest of the scrap would push the soda can down under the 1250 degree molten aluminum. As soon as the heat gets to the moisture much aluminum leaves the furnace.

    I used to operate a die cast machine before automatic ladles were used. You have to be sure anything you stick into the aluminum is dry or it would blow up in your face.

    Sometimes if I was bored I would wring out my soaking wet gloves over the molten aluminum. The water balls up and sometimes dances. It stays about one eighth inch above the aluminum as though floating.

    Super Dave
    Super Dave
    RapidtoCNC.com

  8. #8
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    Good point,when I run my furnace I have a basket on top where I can place about 60 lbs of mixed scrap(cans,screen door ex,cast aluminum etc)it allows the use of waste exhuast heat to both dry out and pre-heat the next batch before it hits the pot.Saves on fuel and time,pre-heating in this manner cutts the melt time nearly in half.
    I just need one more tool,just one!

  9. #9
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    Post

    We had the same problem with molten lead and zinc tanks at a place I worked. However the moisture wasn't the only problem. Water boils off at 212, so anything that held water would be too cold to put in the molten metal. All tools must be warmed (and dry) before going into the tank. Nothing like a lead bathe if you got in a hurry.
    David from jax
    A serious accident is one that money can't fix.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
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    I have been TOLD,several times/several places, that plumbers stick a wet finger into molten lead or solder, that it just sizzles and you get finger out quickly there is NO sensation of heat nor damage done.

    Never tried it my self, never saw it tried, ain't gonna try it, don't suggest ANYONE try it. Don't need no safety lectures, seems to me that a speck of dross, too cold a pot etc could make things go wrong.

    Anyone actually know if it works?

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