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Compressors

| Dismantling, Breaking Down & Maximizing Scrap
  1. #1
    C.M.HUNTER started this thread.
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    Compressors

    Hello all, I just started scrapping stuff about 6 months ago for extra cash. My Job is for a ice machine and refrigeration distributor. Being so we have to process all warranty for these machine. Before I started taking them they company threw away all the warranty parts after the 90 hold period. I started taking them to scrap for extra cash, I talked to the manager about it, its all good. SO, right now I have about 25 large compressors to scrap. I have already drained them and cut them open. My question is....the casing can recycle as iron #1 I think, and the copper wire is worth pulling out. But has anyone scrap these before and know if there is anything else worth value? I am cutting them open, pulling the motors out then removing the copper winding from the motor. Cut the copper out and throw the rest aside. SO is that it? Just scrap the copper and the rest as mixed? Thanks for advice! Finding this forum to have some good advice for someone that just started.


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    Mick's Avatar
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    Far as I've seen with them, that's it. What are you using to cut them open? Are you sure you're getting a good profit (Return On Investment)? I started cutting an AC compressor with a Sawzall and figured it wasn't worth the time it was taking. How much copper did you get from one compressor?
    People may laugh at me, but that's ok. I laugh all the way to the bank.

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    C.M.HUNTER started this thread.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mick View Post
    Far as I've seen with them, that's it. What are you using to cut them open? Are you sure you're getting a good profit (Return On Investment)? I started cutting an AC compressor with a Sawzall and figured it wasn't worth the time it was taking. How much copper did you get from one compressor?
    well I get the compressors for free. I use an angle grinder with a metal cutting wheel on it. They cost about $1.50 per wheel and I can scarp about 4-5 compressors with 1. (I have tons a wheels to so thats not an issue. The compressors are very large, I am getting about 4 lbs on average from each compressor from the wiring and some also have copper tubing. takes about 10min per compressor to set it up, cut it open, unscrew the bolts( wish I had a power tool for those **** hex nuts) and get all the copper wire out. So not to bad. thats about 12 from copper alone. plus the casings/motors are pretty **** heavy. Some of the parts inside look like what I think is tin, some iron and some aluminum.

    Edit: These compressors are about 80-100 lbs each. I have some small 30-45 lbs ones.....not sure if those would be worth the time....I have not cut on open yet.
    Last edited by C.M.HUNTER; 11-20-2010 at 09:26 PM. Reason: edit

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    Mick's Avatar
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    Ok. Yeah, I said Sawzall - meant angle grinder. My compressors are the smaller ones. Those big ones sound like they'd be worth it. The casings should be #1.

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    I have done a few, messy but worth it if you have a lot.
    The windings sometimes have a mix of Copper wire & Ali wire, its easy to see if you cut thru the windings.
    Its a bugger when you find the Ali...... dammit!

    I cut off one end of the motor windings & pull the wire out the other end.
    Theres bits of copper pipe & some brass fitting bits as well.
    I have yet to pull apart a bigger 3 phase one though, that'l be interesting..

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    Phithy McNasty's Avatar
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    Most of the compressors I get are smaller ones out of residential heat and air units. I cut one in half once. It did'nt have copper wire. That was the last one I cut. I strip the outside and drill a 1 1/2 inch hole with a holesaw to drain the oil and sell it as a motor.

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    Quote Originally Posted by C.M.HUNTER View Post
    well I get the compressors for free. I use an angle grinder with a metal cutting wheel on it. They cost about $1.50 per wheel and I can scarp about 4-5 compressors with 1. (I have tons a wheels to so thats not an issue. The compressors are very large, I am getting about 4 lbs on average from each compressor from the wiring and some also have copper tubing. takes about 10min per compressor to set it up, cut it open, unscrew the bolts( wish I had a power tool for those **** hex nuts) and get all the copper wire out. So not to bad. thats about 12 from copper alone. plus the casings/motors are pretty **** heavy. Some of the parts inside look like what I think is tin, some iron and some aluminum.

    Edit: These compressors are about 80-100 lbs each. I have some small 30-45 lbs ones.....not sure if those would be worth the time....I have not cut on open yet.
    I have been cutting open the smaller ones, and found if you have the extra time (I strip out the wire when I am sitting on the porch with nothing else to do) they are worth it. I have filled two 5 gallon buckets with the windings (and I mash them down to get as much as possible in each bucket). Question I have is what brand of metal cutting wheel do you use? I have been getting the cheap ones from Harbor Freight (10 for 7.99) and it usually takes a little more than one to cut all the way around the casing. Basically my cost to cut through one is around 80 cents or so each, while it looks like yours is 30 - 40 cents each.

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    Mick's Avatar
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    Wayne1956, I'd started a thread wondering the same thing. I never got any response, so I went to a lumber store and asked their recommendation for something "worth having". Wound up special ordering two - Turbo brand 7" Pipeline Wheel Type 27 A30R-BF. I think they're also under the brand of "Bulldog". They listed for a little over $6 a piece. I got them for $10+tax. I couldn't find them online so maybe its a "store-only" thing. I haven't used it on anything heavy yet (just aluminum and copper), but seems like they'll do ok.

    I looked at those cheap ones, but I wouldn't waste my money.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mick View Post
    Wayne1956, I'd started a thread wondering the same thing. I never got any response, so I went to a lumber store and asked their recommendation for something "worth having". Wound up special ordering two - Turbo brand 7" Pipeline Wheel Type 27 A30R-BF. I think they're also under the brand of "Bulldog". They listed for a little over $6 a piece. I got them for $10+tax. I couldn't find them online so maybe its a "store-only" thing. I haven't used it on anything heavy yet (just aluminum and copper), but seems like they'll do ok.

    I looked at those cheap ones, but I wouldn't waste my money.
    I did an experimentation with my angle grinder, and found I was using it wrong. I basically cut throught the shell at one point, then continued the cut all the way around. This is really hard on the wheel. I found I could get twice as much use out of it if I would make a shallow cut all the way around, cut a little more a second time, then cut through and take it all the way around the third time. I was not forcing the wheel to cut all the way through the first time, which made it hard on the wheel and wore it down quickly. Now I can cut about 20 shells with a cheap pack of wheels instead of 8 - 9.

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  12. #10
    msmoorad's Avatar
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    just picked up HEAVY compressor today

    i think its easily 100kg's
    about 225lbs

    waiting for a chance to see what goodies lie inside.

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    Quote Originally Posted by wayne1956 View Post
    I did an experimentation with my angle grinder, and found I was using it wrong. I basically cut throught the shell at one point, then continued the cut all the way around. This is really hard on the wheel. I found I could get twice as much use out of it if I would make a shallow cut all the way around, cut a little more a second time, then cut through and take it all the way around the third time. I was not forcing the wheel to cut all the way through the first time, which made it hard on the wheel and wore it down quickly. Now I can cut about 20 shells with a cheap pack of wheels instead of 8 - 9.
    Exactlly, I figured this out when I did my first one. I realized that trying to cut all the way threw i was cutting to far in and was grinding the motor too. ooops Some times ya gotta learn the hard way.

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    My core buyer used to take these whole.. about a month ago I brought 2 in and got the "We don't buy these anymore" I said "How do I rid myself of these now then.." He pointed me to the biggest scrap yard in the area but said- "yeah they have to be cut out and fully drained" Now they just stay in the appliance they are paired with and go in as sheet steel.. Not worth the extreme mess for me to go at it any other way.. Just my .02.

    If anyone in Indiana is willing to drive here to me.. I'd save them up for you if you want to break them down.. I just don't think it will be worth the gas.. but who knows. I don't get hundreds of these, probably 1 or 2 a month.
    Last edited by sledge; 06-12-2013 at 06:04 PM. Reason: Spelling
    I'm so into scrapping.. When my Steel Toe Boots Wear out, I cut the Steel out of them and recycle the Toe!

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    There is a piece with aluminum on it called the rotor sell as breakage

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    If you guys are interested in selling your scrap cores I can buy them for more than just scarp. If you want to know home much you can get for each one give me a call and make some real more than just scarp at 210-587-7964 or 832-460-1065 ask for Oscar

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    i found out if the steel has anykind of aluminum on it its considered breakage and you get .10 a lb instead of .06 lb of steel. so if its got the tiniest bit of ali i count it as breakage.


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