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  1. #1
    SKWrapper started this thread.
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    stripped microwave shells - radioactive? Naaaaw... prove it - skeptic here

    I have a hard time believing that a stripped microwave would set off any type of radiation detector. A whole microwave, sure - maybe because of the Magnatron possibly (other dangerous hazards for the inside of that part as most people know) - but an empty shell...? Anyone have any actual proof besides word of mouth that these are really "radioactive", cause although I absolutely DO NOT claim to be an expert on the subject, I do know a little about it. To my knowledge the inside of a microwave is NOT radioactive when turned off and it does not "radiate" food to cook it - I can post links to articles that support that part of what I am saying.

    If I am dead wrong and someone has proof that an empty stripped microwave shell is radioactive - great, I just learned something and would be sincerely grateful, otherwise I am skeptical. No way that he outside of a microwave would be radioactive because if so - they should reject stoves or any metal from kitchens or anything near microwaves - and people might should not have them in their homes or businesses.



    I can believe that maybe some steel pipes can hold some naturally occurring radiation depending on what they were used for (scale build up etc..), and there are other sources of radioactive scrap, but empty microwave shells?

    Anyone?

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  3. #2
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    Whatever harmful radiation they have is no higher than the background radiation most everything is exposed to since the dawn of nuclear testing. The type of radiation microwaves produce is "non-ionizing radiation" meaning that it cannot remove electrons, damaging cell DNA that can lead to cancers. The harmful radiation is called "ionizing radiation" and has nothing to do with microwaves and no malfunction in a microwave could possibly produce it unless something with ionizing radioactivity was, for some reason, cooked in a microwave. In the *very* improbable event that a microwave shell is storing any kind of the radiation that microwaves produce it will no set off any radiation alarms because that's not what they're set up to detect.

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  5. #3
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    The only people that you have to prove it to are the ones at the scrapyard.

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  7. #4
    SKWrapper started this thread.
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    Quote Originally Posted by JJinLV View Post
    Whatever harmful radiation they have is no higher than the background radiation most everything is exposed to since the dawn of nuclear testing. The type of radiation microwaves produce is "non-ionizing radiation" meaning that it cannot remove electrons, damaging cell DNA that can lead to cancers. The harmful radiation is called "ionizing radiation" and has nothing to do with microwaves and no malfunction in a microwave could possibly produce it unless something with ionizing radioactivity was, for some reason, cooked in a microwave. In the *very* improbable event that a microwave shell is storing any kind of the radiation that microwaves produce it will no set off any radiation alarms because that's not what they're set up to detect.
    See that's what I thought/read too.

    As far as scrapyards, I don't have to prove anything - if some yards won't accept them, so be it - I wouldn't try and sell it to those yards because their rules are their rules. It would be more of a loss for the yard than any individual peddler anyway.
    Last edited by SKWrapper; 12-24-2018 at 10:22 PM.

  8. #5
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    The yard I take my microwaves to do not accept microwaves under any circumstances. I have been stripping them down for parts and taking the frames in for the past 4+ months without any issues.

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  10. #6
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    My shredder yard has the yellow radiation scanners when you drive to the scale. Never once had one set off the detectors.

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  12. #7
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    The yard I go to stopped taking microwaves about a year ago. They told me one of their trucks full of metal left their yard and went to a bigger yard to sell it. The scanners at the other yard were supposedly set off by a microwave and they would not accept the load so the truck had to return with the metal...and the microwave.
    I thought the whole story was a load of BS.

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  14. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by greytruck View Post
    My shredder yard has the yellow radiation scanners when you drive to the scale. Never once had one set off the detectors.

    It wouldn't surprise me if one of those old radar ranges from the 60's would be enough to set off the detectors.

  15. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by 406Refining View Post
    It wouldn't surprise me if one of those old radar ranges from the 60's would be enough to set off the detectors.
    Never brought one in whole, I strip those down completely. The inside box is stainless steal.

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  17. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by jimicrk View Post
    The yard I go to stopped taking microwaves about a year ago. They told me one of their trucks full of metal left their yard and went to a bigger yard to sell it. The scanners at the other yard were supposedly set off by a microwave and they would not accept the load so the truck had to return with the metal...and the microwave.
    I thought the whole story was a load of BS.
    Definitely bs. Microwaves are incapable of producing the frequency of waves that would set off a radation alarm.

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  19. #11
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    I watched a video once where it pointed to a place and said there is a tiny piece of material in the magnetron that does technically produce alpha particles. Again, if you eat it, might be a danger, but you are probably a bigger danger to yourself at that point. Some yards in town take them whole, which seems bad because of the beryllium in the magnetron and the danger it poses crushed and inhaled. My yard is somehow convinced that microwave doors are the ultimate danger. Folks don't understand the difference in wave radiation and emitted radiation. Plus, if microwave cabinets were actually emittively radioactive in the least, dontt you think there would be a warning on everyone specifying that?

    And yes, true radarranges are great finds if they are past the point of use. Lovely stainless cabinet. I wonder if any place actually makes a true stainless interior cabinet at all anywhere? I see them in mag stainless, but not so much non mag.

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  21. #12
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    Have to admit i was a bit paranoid today... I had 3 microwaves in my load of shred. It was all good

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  23. #13
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    It's come to the point where almost all the microwaves I find have copper coated aluminum windings in the transformers. Nowadays unless it's an old built-in model I just check for a glass tray, cut the cord, and leverite.
    Out of clutter, find simplicity. --Albert Einstein

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  25. #14
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    Everything is radio active to some extent ...

  26. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by RLS0812 View Post
    Everything is radio active to some extent ...
    That chart is from my favorite comic!

  27. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by JJinLV View Post
    That chart is from my favorite comic!
    Did you read the disclaimer at the bottom of the chart?

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  29. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by jimicrk View Post
    Did you read the disclaimer at the bottom of the chart?
    I mean...it's a cartoon lol. xkcd (the name of the comic strip) does some great science in its cartooning but it's still a comic.

  30. #18
    jimicrk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JJinLV View Post
    I mean...it's a cartoon lol. xkcd (the name of the comic strip) does some great science in its cartooning but it's still a comic.
    Well, that's good to know. I'm feeling bad this morning though because last night I threw out all of the bananas and made my wife sleep on the couch.

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  32. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by jimicrk View Post
    Well, that's good to know. I'm feeling bad this morning though because last night I threw out all of the bananas and made my wife sleep on the couch.
    Nuts and seeds are the most radioactive food humans eat ... you also may want to throw away all root vegetables, remove all drywall/plaster walls, remove stone and brick from your house, dispose of all wood, and not live in California.

  33. #20
    SKWrapper started this thread.
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    Quote Originally Posted by jimicrk View Post
    Well, that's good to know. I'm feeling bad this morning though because last night I threw out all of the bananas and made my wife sleep on the couch.
    Well you should feel bad for not smoking the banana peels - how could someone waste banana peels that way is beyond me.


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