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Fun with Wood's metal

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Fun with Wood's metal

Postby jake_leg » Sun Mar 11, 2012 4:35 pm

Sorry if I just spoiled it for any Uri Geller fans out there.
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Re: Fun with Wood's metal

Postby Swede » Sun Mar 11, 2012 4:58 pm

:? :? I don't get it?? :? :?
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Re: Fun with Wood's metal

Postby jake_leg » Sun Mar 11, 2012 5:06 pm

This stuff is soft like lead and melts at 70 oC. :mg: Arrgh the Geller thing was bendy spoons wasn't it :doh:

Anyway, I was thinking, I have a bunch of 10 mm pipe that came out of a hot water cylinder. I have tried everything to wind this into a coil -- springs, packing with salt, annealing -- but it is stiff as anything. It holds out for as long as it can, wrinkles a bit, then finally kinks. I was racking my brains for something that I could put inside the tube to help it bend. Something long and strong and very flexible.

Elephants trunks!

But not just any elephants, they have to be midget elephants because after all we are talking about 10 mm tube and that is not very wide. Midget elephants can be hard to come by, but I was fortunate enough to get my hands on a dozen or so with a bit of help from this chap in Deptford called Russell.

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(To be continued.)
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Re: Fun with Wood's metal

Postby myles » Tue Mar 13, 2012 4:29 am

Why not just don't bother making a coil.
Either use it for a cassette element, by putting U bends on the ends of staight sections, or use it as a shotgun. What do you wish to put the 10 mm tube in, as you can get 22mm brass manifolds (a female end cap with a heavy base) that are predrilled to accept either 2, 3, or 4 10mm tubes. I used these on my spiral liebig as the vapour is inside the 10mm tubes so does not come into contact with the brass.

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I have realised since then that you could do the same with any end cap by soldering on a few copper disks first - to build up the base thickness - then drill the required patern of holes. This could be an alternative way of doing a multi core condenser. Just use an end cap 1 size down from your outer shell so it will fit inside it.
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Re: Fun with Wood's metal

Postby Dan P. » Tue Mar 13, 2012 5:26 pm

Deptford is the source of much good shit, and a lot of shit shit, too. Why not get one of those pipe bending springs from Wicke's? If you go to the Wicke's on Blackheath Hill you will also have the pleasure of experiencing the worst customer service in the Western World.
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Re: Fun with Wood's metal

Postby jake_leg » Tue Mar 13, 2012 5:27 pm

To cut a long story short, I melted down the elephants trunks and all the knobbly tusky bits too, and poured it into my copper tube. I was hoping it would flow into the tube and then allow me to bend it. Instead it plugged up the tube with bits of melted elephant!!! Most discouraging. Well, I tried to heat the tube to try to encourage the elephants to move down inside the tube, but rather obstinately they decided to alloy with the copper to form an unspecified low melting point alloy that sort of dribbled all over the place.

Bloody elephants - like they say, never work with animals or children :x

Of course it could be that Russell got me the wrong sort of elephants, or was some sort of con man. Come to think of it, his construction firm was called "Complete Fabrication".
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Re: Fun with Wood's metal

Postby Dan P. » Tue Mar 13, 2012 5:48 pm

jake_leg wrote:Well, I tried to heat the tube to try to encourage the elephants to move down inside the tube, but rather obstinately they decided to alloy with the copper to form an unspecified low melting point alloy that sort of dribbled all over the place.


I think this will be familiar to many London commuters.
I don't know if it's still there, but there used to be a gay porn studio on Creekside, on Faircharm I believe. There were often muscular dudes hanging around. Perhaps next time you might ask their assistance in "bending your pipe".
Tee-hee....urm
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Re: Fun with Wood's metal

Postby jake_leg » Tue Mar 13, 2012 5:55 pm

I'm not familiar with that perversion, perhaps you could elaborate.

All I did was ask if they had Wood's.
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Re: Fun with Wood's metal

Postby Dan P. » Tue Mar 13, 2012 5:58 pm

jake_leg wrote:I'm not familiar with that perversion


Well now you know where to go.


God, I miss Deptford.
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Re: Fun with Wood's metal

Postby manu de hanoi » Mon Aug 20, 2012 12:35 pm

jake_leg wrote: I have tried everything to wind this into a coil -- springs, packing with salt, annealing -- but it is stiff as anything. It holds out for as long as it can, wrinkles a bit, then finally kinks. I was racking my brains for something that I could put inside the tube to help it bend. Something long and strong and very flexible.


what radius did you try to bend it ? the bigger the diameter the bigger the radius, a 8 mm tube coil would prolly barely fit in a 2" pipe so a 10 mm coil should have a bigger diameter. What's the thickness ?


By the way, has anyone tried wax (candle/parafin/beeswax etc..) ? I intend to try soon
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Re: Fun with Wood's metal

Postby olcarguy » Mon Aug 20, 2012 8:10 pm

Did u anneal the pipe first before trying to bend. if it is ridged pipe it will kink befor bending.....just a thought.
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Re: Fun with Wood's metal

Postby Ayay » Wed Aug 22, 2012 3:50 am

Copper pipe is supplied as 'hard drawn' (left in the work-hardened state), and 'annealed' (re-softened after the last drawing).

Hard drawn copper is sold in straight lengths and is used where straight pieces of pipe are needed. Any bends need annealing where the bend must be made.

Annealed copper is sold in coils and it can be easily bent anywhere, it will never be nice and straight.

You can anneal pure copper by simply heating it to a dull red heat. This is a good way to make sure your copper is organnicaly clean because most organic compounds will be burnt off. If there is any lead or tin solder attached these will soak into the copper at dull red heat.

A teaspoon made from woods metal will melt off while stirring a cup of hot tea! Woods metal is best used for soldering glass to metal, but only where the operating environment is below 70*.
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Re: Fun with Wood's metal

Postby manu de hanoi » Wed Aug 22, 2012 4:07 am

OP specified he tried annealing already
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Re: Fun with Wood's metal

Postby pintoshine » Wed Aug 22, 2012 5:40 am

I found a nice trick on "How it's Made" when they showed a bit about making brass musical instruments. They filled the pipe with soapy waterand froze it. I have resorted to this several times trying to make a nice bend in hard copper pipe. It really works but you have to be quick about it.
All this to make a nice transition from a turned down lyne arm to a thumper. Too much work.
Distill safe. Make good cuts. Enjoy yourself. Give as much as you take. Have fun doing this incredibly hard work. Be a good example. It's your hobby.
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Re: Fun with Wood's metal

Postby jake_leg » Wed Aug 22, 2012 10:32 am

I did eventually manage to make a short coil with the stuff as a dephlegmator for my coffee can bubble plate head. I annealed it, packed with sand, and used a bending spring as well. I made about 3x 2" turns. Although the tube did not kink it had ridges on the inside and was flattened on the outside. It was the usual thickness wall, about 0.6mm, but just not very ductile. Just the wrong kind of copper. I now know to use refrigerant or brake tubing not water pipe.

Ayay I didn't know you can solder to glass with Wood's metal. That sounds interesting. Another use for it that I was thinking of was to make a concave mould for hammering copper balls from sheet.
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