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Topic: Harvesting components from devices (Read 19477 times) previous topic - next topic

GlitchBoy

OMG copiers are great for components.  Especially the bigger ones that have a lot of paper handling i.e. many paper feed trays, document feeder, finisher (stapler).  Find a nice big one and you'll find all kinds of motors (steppers, servos, 3-phase DC), solenoids, sensors, clutches, and of course the appropriate components to control them (IC's).  Some of the motors are fairly hefty.  The components are 24v but naturally there'll be a beefy power supply in the copier to put out all the necessary voltages 24v, 5v, and sometimes others.  Lots of wires, connectors, microswitches too.

Depending on the machine there'll also be pulleys, belts, gears, bearings, bushings, rollers, shafts, etc.

If you go to your local copier dealer I'm willing to bet that at any time they're going to have one or more that they're ready to just throw in the dumpster that they'd be more than happy to give you. 

I know all this because I have a copier dealership and I've always found it a great shame seeing all that stuff go to waste.  Lately I've been trying to harvest as much as I can from them before the scrap guy picks them up, but I have a hard time keeping up.

copiertalk


OMG copiers are great for components.  Especially the bigger ones that have a lot of paper handling i.e. many paper feed trays, document feeder, finisher (stapler).  Find a nice big one and you'll find all kinds of motors (steppers, servos, 3-phase DC), solenoids, sensors, clutches, and of course the appropriate components to control them (IC's).  Some of the motors are fairly hefty.  The components are 24v but naturally there'll be a beefy power supply in the copier to put out all the necessary voltages 24v, 5v, and sometimes others.  Lots of wires, connectors, microswitches too.

Depending on the machine there'll also be pulleys, belts, gears, bearings, bushings, rollers, shafts, etc.

If you go to your local copier dealer I'm willing to bet that at any time they're going to have one or more that they're ready to just throw in the dumpster that they'd be more than happy to give you. 

I know all this because I have a copier dealership and I've always found it a great shame seeing all that stuff go to waste.  Lately I've been trying to harvest as much as I can from them before the scrap guy picks them up, but I have a hard time keeping up.




I set them out on the loading dock in hopes someone will come finish them off for us. Most times the scrap metal guys come and pick them up for the frame but if someone wanted a motor or cluch I would let them have anything they wanted out of it. They are afterall scrap to me and its cheaper to have someone haul it off for scrap than it is to pay someone to take all the stuff off and take it to the scrap yard.

ckiick

I just spent about a week cleaning up my workspace, which included harvesting parts from a number of devices.

R/C toys are pretty easy. Most abandoned RC toys do not have a remote.  If you do have a remote, try it with other RC stuff, it might work.  Keep the remotes - you never know when they may actually be useful.  The RC device itself will yield motors, gears, axles and wheels if you want them.  Keep an eye out for rechargeable batteries.  Each RC toy will have a small circuit board in it which you should keep because it will have one or more H-bridge circuits in it which can be used to drive motors.  Also the receiver chip can be used for communications if there is a paired remote.  I have a robot with an RC receiver board in it for just this purpose.  The plastic shell and other junk can be recycled. Sometimes the battery compartment is modular enough to dremel off and re-use.

Printers and scanners have tons of good parts in them.  Motors, gears, sensors, cables, connectors, rods and optical parts.  My favorite is the photo-interrupters. Most of the bulk of a printer or scanner is plastic and metal dross that can go in the recycle bin.  What's left takes up a lot less room.  Speakers can be useful so keep those intact.  LCD displays are generally hard to re-use unless there is a driver chip for them, but LEDs and 7-segment displays are easy to re-use.
Buttons and switches also come in handy. I always keep the screws and other small hardware from a tear down.

Other devices that have good salvage in them: VCRs or DVD players, copiers, mice, fax machines, old motherboards and dead computers.  Anything which does something interesting but no longer works is generally on my hit list.  I recycle the metal and plastic, salvage the motors and gears and throw the PCBs into a box.  Note that tossing circuit boards into the trash is not a good idea. Things that are not so good for salvaging are cell phones, hand-held video games, TVs and CRTs.  They either have no good reusable parts, or they leave you with bulk dross that you can't throw away or recycle.

Things that can be salvaged from an old PCB are voltage regulators, power plugs, connectors, buttons, generic ICs, sensors, cables, resistor networks and jumpers.  Most chips have identification on them, so you can look up the data sheet (if available) to see if it's worth keeping.  For large-scale salvaging I recommend a heat gun or something similar which can melt off a lot of parts at once.  Trying to desolder components from a motherboard is just too painful.  Generally, surface mount components, large ASICs, unmarked chips and large connectors are too hard to get off and not worth the effort.  Small parts like resistors and capacitors are also usually not worth the effort since new ones are so cheap.

Organizing the salvage is essential. Large ziploc freezer bags work fairly well: you can see what's in them, write on them and keep piles of them in boxes.  Sometimes I create a salvage bag for a device with all the useful parts in it.  Write useful information on the bag, like what kinds of battery or power supply the device used, or the exact model number.  I also have bags for motors, gears, cables, wall warts, connectors, speakers and other large parts.  Smaller parts can go into coffee cans or sandwich bags.  I have a can of screws and nuts that I can search through when I need to replace or fix something.

Have fun disassembling!
Chris J. Kiick
Robot builder and all around geek.

kriss-38

I often get lot of components from discarded devices.
My last one was a little clock which was on my kitchen wall.It is only a very little printed circuit with 2 inputs for power supply and 2 outputs for the power to coil. On each of these 2 outputs , you can have pulses separeted by 2 seconds and if you combine both you can get an accurate timebase at 1 second. To power it (1.5V) you can use a resistor from, lets's say 5v, to a red LED of which the cathode is at 0V . between anode and cathode of this LED you can measure approximately 1.5V which is perfect.
It is possible to drive a transistor from the outputs to get a 1second period timebase at a TTL level.
I have also got several 7 segments displays from panel of microwave ovens , and in those panels i have also taken relays and very often a quadrature encoder in the size of a classic potentiometer.
I discard every "exotic" component and for every component i can salvage i use google with the search criteria : "part_number AND datasheet". By this way i have a lot of components i can use in many projects. Like this I could build a little LCmeter i found on the web site of an Italian OM , LCmeter i can connect to my old frequency counter i built 35 years ago. These two things together with a little BASIC programm let me measure a lot of capacitors or inductors with a very good précision.
I salvage also every power supply and power cord , ribbon cable and also wire which is very useful for cabling.

Techone

@kriss-38

The clock idea is a good one, that can be use in an Arduino project.  And a LC meter, that is a very interresting project to do. That is possible with an Arduino also.

Right now, my basement room is full of harvest parts and devices ready to be harvest ( from the garbage - of others peoples ) and yes I am a bit overwelm to how to store and "clean" my basement room.

dzzyd88

im harvesting parts from everything old laptop to printers shit like that but for the laptop i was wondering if anyone knows how to make a ethen et hook up for the arduino without buying a ethenet shield so practicly wanting to build my own, or how about the wifi card in a laptop can it hook up with some tweeks?

strykeroz


im harvesting parts from everything old laptop to printers shit like that but for the laptop i was wondering if anyone knows how to make a ethen et hook up for the arduino without buying a ethenet shield so practicly wanting to build my own, or how about the wifi card in a laptop can it hook up with some tweeks?
You could get a network module either completely built up, or as a bare circuit.  There are many on eBay.  The ENC28J60 Ethernet LAN Modules are very cheap but not so well supported by the Arduino IDE (they're not supported directly by the standard IDE 1.0 libraries so you have to either find and download one and use an older IDE version, or write your own if you're going to go for one of those.  Alternatively look for a module with the supported chipset.  In the end though not sure you'll save a heap over getting a shield, but you do get the flexibility of choosing your own pins to a larger extent.

Back to the topic at hand, I understand from one of the original posters that grabbing the stepper controllers that match to the steppers will be a good idea, but in a situation where you have multiple steppers that are unmarked and of different sizes, can you point me to a way of working out what the spec is of a component you've harvested (stepper, DC motors for example) where there is no component marking on them?  I've recently pulled down a few Canon and Epson printers, internally they have a mix of voltages being supplied aside from 12v and 5v (one Epson stepper that has a marking says it's 14v and the supply inside one Pixma puts out 24v and 32v for example).

Short question is can you determine without fear of destroying it what spec a motor or stepper is that has no markings?  Also is there a standard order for the pins/ribbons coming out of a stepper?

Thanks
"There is no problem so bad you can't make it worse"
- retired astronaut Chris Hadfield

Techone

@strykeroz

I do understand you problem. I am one of the people who like havesting parts from the e-garbage I pick up ( unless somebody beat me to it   :0  - specially in my neiborhood )

Here what I do : I measure with a ohmmeter to help me to figure out the wirring diagram, read / search about step-motors on the Net, since I have an idea, I apply voltage to see what happen and I may do a short code to test the stepper ( seperated Vcc for the stepper control by transistor with reversed diode - a basic "relay" circuit - base transitor - transistor - diode - motor coil ).

I do the same for 7 segment display, place a voltage ( +5 ) , a resistor of 330, an connect to gnd. Check every pins and combinations I can think of. Same for a stepper motor. Figure out a combination to make it work. 

As for transformer, measure with a ohmmeter to check the connections,  connect the 120 AC very carefully ( the location I think it is ) plug the AC on, measured the output to see what I get.

As for the semiconductors, I check / search about the number on the part to find what that is.

In one of the printer that I find in the garbage and took appart... I find a very interesting 40 pins IC, non SMT, I read the number of that part....--->  8255  <---  :smiley-eek:     I say : NO WAY !!!!  an old Intel PIA chip and maybe functional.

A PIA is an I/O chip that a early CPU like 8085, 8080 or 8086 can "communicated" with the outside world... Just like an ATMega328 - Ardiuno, except the Arduino have all in one chip ( CPU, Memory, PIA, UART )

Anyway, it is fun to take apart stuffs. you never know of what you going to get. 

cr0sh


In one of the printer that I find in the garbage and took appart... I find a very interesting 40 pins IC, non SMT, I read the number of that part....--->  8255  <---  :smiley-eek:     I say : NO WAY !!!!  an old Intel PIA chip and maybe functional.

A PIA is an I/O chip that a early CPU like 8085, 8080 or 8086 can "communicated" with the outside world... Just like an ATMega328 - Ardiuno, except the Arduino have all in one chip ( CPU, Memory, PIA, UART )


That is very strange - did you test it to make sure it -was- an 8255 (and not something marked that way)? I can't imagine the reason a printer would need such a thing (PIA) unless it also had a cpu, memory, etc - I wonder why the manufacturer used such a thing (did you notice what/how it was connected - it would be interesting to me to understand such reasoning - how old was the printer, anyway?).
I will not respond to Arduino help PM's from random forum users; if you have such a question, start a new topic thread.

marklar

I hacked an X10 PIR motion sensor since I had it around and useless since I don't use X10 anymore.  To do that I just used a meter to determine what changed when it clicked and soldered to that.

Also a broken stereo had some really high quality rotary encoders and button matrix setups with nice wires - little to no soldering needed.  I posted details along with the pictures and code for the encoder, button matrix and the discovery phase in the exibitionist area - but may be useful here as well - so here is a link. 
http://arduino.cc/forum/index.php/topic,67382.0.html

I have yet to hack another but will for sure pull a stereo like this before the "clam truck" eats it.

Techone

@cr0sh

The printer in question is :  Cannon  K10149  Centronic / Parallel Interface

Here the inscription of the "8255"

QH7-8787-03
V1.04
M5388002E-F1
8255B01

I may jump to conclusion to early...  :smiley-roll-blue:

cr0sh


@cr0sh

The printer in question is :  Cannon  K10149  Centronic / Parallel Interface

Here the inscription of the "8255"

QH7-8787-03
V1.04
M5388002E-F1
8255B01

I may jump to conclusion to early...  :smiley-roll-blue:


Got a picture of the chip handy? I've got a few 8255 rattling around in my shop; typically, the number will be in the first few numbers on the IC, not at the end (where it would be a date code or a batch number or something). Those numbers also look like "house chip" markings - were there any other ICs on board the PCB? Is it a 40 pin DIP IC? If it is, there were more than a few other chips in that package; it could be a some kind of 8051 or Z80 (or some other 8-bit) processor, with likely a ROM mask (to act as a printer controller) - the 8255 is just some other number.

Then again, it could be an actual 8255...

:)
I will not respond to Arduino help PM's from random forum users; if you have such a question, start a new topic thread.

Techone

@cr0sh

Bummer... "in-house" chip....  =(

There is also one way to find out... : LIVE TEST ....  :smiley-eek:

PS : I try to upload pictures... no luck...

strykeroz

Is there anything to scavenge from inside an old diskette, CD or DVD drive from a PC?
"There is no problem so bad you can't make it worse"
- retired astronaut Chris Hadfield

Techone

@strykeroz

Motors, gears, belts,  metals ( bars & slidders ), nuts & bots,  some smt parts ( hard to harvest - for me so far ), switches, IC's , resistors and capacitors.  I have a lots of drives at my place. I have at least 15 PC, all founds at the street curbs, yep --> e-garbage. 

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