Component Legs

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by RodneyB, Aug 30, 2013.

  1. RodneyB

    Thread Starter Active Member

    Apr 28, 2012
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    I have been wondering for some time if there is anything constructive than can be done with the off cut legs from electronic components.

    It seems such an environmental injustice to discard them into the rubbish dump.
     
  2. pwdixon

    Member

    Oct 11, 2012
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    They're great for shorting links on vero/strip board to make the cross track connections rather than having to cut up and strip wire links.
     
  3. ErnieM

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 24, 2011
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    You actual get paid for metal when you bring it to a recycling center.
     
  4. RodneyB

    Thread Starter Active Member

    Apr 28, 2012
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    Thank you I will start trying to melt them down and take them for recycling

    They made from a copper alloy am I correct?
     
  5. mcgyvr

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    You don't have to melt them down to recycle them..
     
  6. atferrari

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    How many Kg a month do you expect to collect?

    With few, maybe you will pay part of the gasoline spent to go there. Or you use a bike?
     
  7. ErnieM

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    Last time I went scrap was down to 8 cents a pound, down from 10 cents the year before.

    I wait till I have at least 500 pounds to fill the bed of my pick up. The 40 bucks I get back feels much better then getting nothing, which is what I'd get if I drove the same distance the other way to the dump.
     
  8. #12

    Expert

    Nov 30, 2010
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    I just let things accumulate behind the shed for a year. Then I take everything apart to separate the different metals so I can get a better price. I average about $300 a year.
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2013
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  9. Metalmann

    Active Member

    Dec 8, 2012
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    I solder those cut off legs to different gauge wire, and use them for patch inserts into breadboards. A lot better consistency than wire. Recycle everything. Makes your BB contact surfaces last a bit longer, also.
     
  10. THE_RB

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    Feb 11, 2008
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    Most are steel, either solder coated or more likely these days just raw tin coated (which is why resistor legs and cap legs rust in your parts box).

    They are not prime recycling materials the best you will get is a few cents a pound for "dirty" steel.

    So that's a few cents you will get, for tens of thousands of legs...
     
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  11. MrChips

    Moderator

    Oct 2, 2009
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    Cut off leads go in a drawer in the parts cabinet.
    I use them for jumpers, vias, test points, ground connections and for cleaning PCB holes when replacing thru-hole components.
     
  12. GopherT

    AAC Fanatic!

    Nov 23, 2012
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    Resistor legs are about .030" (0.8 mm) and assume you cut off an inch (25mm) each. You end up with 0.1 grams each leg.

    That means 4540 legs per pound (10k per kilo).

    Lesson is, unless you have pick-and-place insertion equipment running in your basement, don't plan weekly trips to the recycling center.
     
  13. KL7AJ

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    Nov 4, 2008
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    Indeed! I have a whole little bin of them. I use them for jumpers, or for short leads, such as for poking into Arduino connectors. :)
     
  14. THE_RB

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    I had to check that, as 0.8 seems quite a large PCB drill size to me these days.

    I used good vernier calipers, new resistor legs in my junkbox are 0.58mm diameter and new cap legs (mono caps, ceramics etc) are 0.48mm. They really try to skimp on steel these days in component legs.

    So if 4540 is correct for 1" 0.8mm legs, and volume/mass being the square of the diameter I get;

    resistor legs = 8637 per pound
    cap legs = 12611 per pound

    Also, the cap legs on mono's and ceramics are too short to get 1" cutoffs, it's closer to 0.5" so the real figure for cap legs might be well over 20000 per pound.
     
  15. #12

    Expert

    Nov 30, 2010
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    Good point RB. Rodney will just have to throw the short legs in with the dead appliances to make the trip worth the gasoline.
     
  16. strantor

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    Oct 3, 2010
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    Make a sculpture out of them. Include some obsolete ICS, and a little bit of PCB art. Maybe some dancing LEDs. sell it as modern art for tens of thousands of dollars. Much better than you could get for scrap value and shouldn't take more than a couple weeks of free evenings.

    I knew a guy who did that with rusty barbed wire. He was a "jack of all trades" who owned a small engine repair shop, and also did odd jobs like fencing on the many ranches around. That's how he got started. Came home with about a mile of worthless rusty barbed wire and made sculptures out it. He plays to the wealthy Texan who likes to adorn their house with rustic southwest type art. He makes cow heads, cactus, trees, etc, all life size. Takes him a really long time. Last I saw him, he had been working on a life sized barbed wire horse. All barbed wire, no steel support frame. His work is really amazing, and I bet that's all he does now. I got the impression he was making more from his art than his shop.
     
  17. THE_RB

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    [​IMG]

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    :D
     
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  18. strantor

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    There you got the idea. Now scale it up.
     
  19. atferrari

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    Nice spider RB!
     
  20. #12

    Expert

    Nov 30, 2010
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    Absolutely spooky!
     
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