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 Post subject: Propane tanks
PostPosted: Thu Sep 07, 2017 5:57 pm 

Joined: Thu Nov 12, 2015 2:43 pm
Posts: 11
How to Safely scrap propane tanks, Bar-BQ size and smaller. ?


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 Post subject: Re: Propane tanks
PostPosted: Thu Sep 07, 2017 11:49 pm 

Joined: Tue Feb 03, 2015 6:57 pm
Posts: 3323
Location: Low DOS
Uh, the general public doesn't.
That said anything following is just jokes and jest and entertainment and don't read my alien codes to planet Zed!
Easiest way is to take the can in the middle of a field, turn the valve, walk a away for a while and hope it's empty.
Fastest way is to put a full pull pressure torch head on the valve, light it, open it as far as it will go keeping a flame, and waiting for it to burn out. . Then waiting a while longer.
Instant method is shooting it with large calibre incendiary rounds shunted with tracers.
Any you could always toss it in your camp fire and wait for the pretty boom.

Still reading? Naughty user!
I toss the "how do I remove the brass fittings from propane tanks" question in the same category as "how do I remove gold contacts from a lithium battery".
If you don't mind missing limbs, melted skin, and death, watch YouTube. Plenty of stupid idiots will show you how.
Note 38 states require scrap liquid/compressed gas containers be halved. 4 more require them quartered. And two ban consumer scrapping of them entirely.
That includes propane, butanol, and fire extinguishers.
So if they will buy them from you the law in 42 states says you have to cut it on half first. At the least
YouTube is full of people whacking them with sledgehammers. All fun and games till somebody blows up. Those videos don't get posted (for long) so you've be warned.

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 Post subject: Re: Propane tanks
PostPosted: Fri Sep 08, 2017 12:17 pm 

Joined: Tue Feb 03, 2015 6:57 pm
Posts: 3323
Location: Low DOS
Ohkay. Reality is any compressed gas container is dangerous.
Honestly with the terrible rules on exchange services you should probably try exchanging the old tank for a new one, usually $10-$25 or so for an exchange. And try to get one that looks nice. Then take a picture, head over to Craig's list and post it for sale. Why aim for $1-$2 in scrap when you can sell the full one for $35-$50.
Smaller ones like torch tanks you may as well try selling locally if it's in good condition. If not many major hardware stores like ace and Lowes will accept them in for free. They're so thick cutting through them is a chore. And a waste.

Regardless of size If you're more rual try a camping or hunting supply shop. They'll usually accept them for free and may even pay you if the condition is good enough.

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 Post subject: Re: Propane tanks
PostPosted: Sat Sep 09, 2017 1:08 pm 

Joined: Thu Nov 12, 2015 2:43 pm
Posts: 11
Thank You, Thank You!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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 Post subject: Re: Propane tanks
PostPosted: Sat Sep 09, 2017 1:47 pm 

Joined: Tue Feb 03, 2015 6:57 pm
Posts: 3323
Location: Low DOS
I go through a few dozen cylinder tanks a year.
I've tried cutting through an old map tank. I used a diamond blade roter disk to no make sparks; whole time praying it was totally empty and didn't spark.
About 10 minutes later I had two pieces.
I got 5 cents for the tank. App $1.50 for the brass nozzle and insets, a flat two dollars for the pressure gage.
And spent $45 on a new diamond disk.
Lesson learned.
The authorised recovery companies that take them use vacuum systems to pull all the gas out and into holding tanks. The wasted gas is then sold back to industry as MCLG for automotive use.
Mixed compressed liquid gas is a growing industry that is currently the backbone of storage and supply. The majority of "propane" lift trucks and the like are now using MCLG in many cases, usually 60/40 tanks.
It's a prime example of an industry that 10 years ago required subsidies to make it maintainable, and is now profitable.

Like batteries if enough people recycling things the correct way commerce will find a way to make money from it.

The boards we all sell to boardsort: eventually much of the non-toxic plastics and woods will wind up in lumber and service. From plastic mulch for playgrounds to plastic lumber for decks, to recovered chip board for the backs of entertainment system equipment and speaker boxes.
That "cardboard" box your next pack of AAs comes in may have been your old Soundcard.

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 Post subject: Re: Propane tanks
PostPosted: Wed Sep 13, 2017 2:18 pm 

Joined: Tue Feb 03, 2015 6:57 pm
Posts: 3323
Location: Low DOS
www.bluerhino.com/Help/FAQ/Tank-Exchange#FAQLink161

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 Post subject: Re: Propane tanks
PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2017 2:44 pm 
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Joined: Tue Aug 22, 2017 10:42 am
Posts: 10
Location: Virginia
lostinlodos, there is a better way to cut those tanks and far less dangerous. I use a Milwaukee Sawzall. Blades are relatively inexpensive and tend to last a long time (unless abused) plus you don't have all of the sparks you get with a diamond or friction blade in a hand grinder.

Refrigerant tanks (Freon) have a safety plug built into the tank to prevent an explosion form too much pressure, either on the side or bottom of the tank.

The tanks you really have to be careful with are acetylene tanks. Instead of cutting those in half it's better to sell them online. I've sold several on ebay. If the tanks date code is no longer valid you can take it to a welding supply and trade it for a new tank with a valid date code (of course you have to pay for the acetylene refill). Personally, I think cutting an acetylene tank is not the wisest choice.

If you are into refining gold old propane tanks are great for building a small portable kilin


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 Post subject: Re: Propane tanks
PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2017 3:20 pm 

Joined: Tue Feb 03, 2015 6:57 pm
Posts: 3323
Location: Low DOS
I'm targeting the general users here though.
Bottom line is from a safety stand point it's not a good idea to cut into a propane tank. Or any compressed flammable gas tank.
If you can unscrew the top external brass fittings without issue they'll pay nicely as scrap.
Beyond that it's safest to just put recycle on the side in big bold marker and drop it off at any rhino or blast etc exchange location.

I agree there's lots of things you can do with them but the general public shouldn't try that stuff.

Personally I use an old map tank that been cut and modified as a kiln for melting copper to make replacement fittings.
From a scrap standpoint you're going to spend more time (and risk) trying to abide by local laws than the value is worth.
If it's in good condition as I said above by all means sell it. If there's any rust or dents; turn it in and forget about it. They're worth less then $3 in scrap in the best of circumstances.

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-- my grades are my own and do not represent an offer from boardsort, nor are they guaranteed. Please keep that in mind.


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