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Author Topic: Dummy Load Oil ???  (Read 10220 times)
WB2NGX
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Posts: 35




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« on: August 10, 2012, 06:15:25 PM »

I recently found a mint Heat Kit cantenna dummy load. It was a bit wet on the top as most are from carrying them around with the oil splashing and seeping through the ceramic insulator. I cleaned it all up. Research tells me these weren't shipped with oil...... it was up to the buyer to obtain the oil. Now, my question is I'm wondering what type oil might be in this thing??? I doubt there is any way to tell by color or smell. The bottom of the can has a coating of some sediment or fine light sludge, maybe some seperation of the oil over the years. It looks clear with a slight yellow cast. I emptied it into a plastic milk carton and wiped the inside of the can clean. I'm wondering if I should put it back in or look for some transformer oil. I don't know if this original stuff contains any PCB's or not. It does'nt scare me but to be safe I would rather put some oil of a know type back in it.

TNX......
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W5FYI
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« Reply #1 on: August 10, 2012, 06:33:28 PM »

"I don't know if this original stuff contains any PCB's or not."

It's probably best to replace the oil with something you know is safe. Your local electric utility probably has barrels of PBC-free transformer oil and might let you have a gallon for free, or at little cost. Another substitute is mineral oil, which you can buy by the gallon at a tack shop, farm supply store, or from a veterinarian.
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KR4BD
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« Reply #2 on: August 10, 2012, 07:57:57 PM »

I still have a Heathkit Cantenna I built in the mid-70's.  One recommended and relatively inexpensive fill, as I recall, was mineral oil.  It would not take quite as much heat as transformer oil, but it was definitely safe to use for all but very high power (1000+ watts) for extended time periods.  The instruction manual, which I still have somewhere in my "pile of stuff" clearly warned against using any kind of motor oil and similar, flamable oils.
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K3GM
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« Reply #3 on: August 11, 2012, 04:40:57 AM »

I cleaned my local pharmacy out of mineral oil.  30 years later, it's still very clear and of course is not rancid like vegetable oil will do.
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KG6BRG
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« Reply #4 on: August 11, 2012, 06:01:13 AM »

Walmart is also a good source of not too, expensive mineral oil.
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KA5IPF
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« Reply #5 on: August 11, 2012, 10:07:07 AM »

Just be prepared for the funny looks when you buy 8 pints of mineral oil at a pharmacy. Farm supply won't even think twice about it and probably has it in gal sizes.

Clif
(still grinning about the time I did that)
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WB2NGX
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« Reply #6 on: August 11, 2012, 11:53:09 AM »

Just be prepared for the funny looks when you buy 8 pints of mineral oil at a pharmacy. Farm supply won't even think twice about it and probably has it in gal sizes.

Clif
(still grinning about the time I did that)

That is exactly why I would like to buy a gallon from any place other than the local drug stores. Thanks for all the input.
I have no clue as to what the stuff is that I removed. Looking at it in a clear plastic milk jug it's golden in color. Mineral oils that I've seen aare clear or slightly yellow. When you get this stuff on your fingers the smell is hard to get rid of.
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K2OWK
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« Reply #7 on: August 11, 2012, 02:26:11 PM »

Silicon oil can also be used, but is expensive and I do not know of any advantage to it, in this type of use.

73s

K2OWK
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K1CJS
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« Reply #8 on: August 12, 2012, 05:18:04 AM »

Mineral oil is the generally accepted alternative.
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WA8IUR
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« Reply #9 on: August 14, 2012, 06:28:50 AM »

Mine is 50 yrs old and I put mineral oil in 17yrs ago. Be prepared for strange looks from the cashier where you buy it from. Act like your run down and keep holding your stomache.

         73 TIM WA8IUR
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K8AXW
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« Reply #10 on: August 14, 2012, 08:06:10 AM »

OK..... let's go in another direction for a moment.  How do I get rid of a gallon of transformer oil with PCBs?? 

(Great!  Now I have worry about a SWAT team smashing down my door!)
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KD0REQ
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Posts: 971




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« Reply #11 on: August 14, 2012, 09:45:18 AM »

good luck with that, the power companies can't get rid of theirs.

you could do like General Electric, and dump it in the Hudson... <nixon_impression> but it would be wrong.  Westinghouse had a refit station behind our offices, and it took a year to dig out and clean up the parking lot next to that building just recently.

best thing I can think of is drive in smiling to your local hazwaste pickup point, hand it over, and burn rubber all the way back home.  "hey, what's in this stuff?" "really don't know, it's old oil that I don't want.  came out of some kind of old radio stuff."  you are now legally off the hook, morally clear, and you got rid of the crud at the right place.  you didn't test it right?  let them do it.
« Last Edit: August 14, 2012, 09:49:22 AM by KD0REQ » Logged
N5VTU
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Posts: 365




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« Reply #12 on: August 14, 2012, 10:09:56 AM »

Go to your local Tractor Supply store and get this -

http://www.tractorsupply.com/ideal-animal-health-mineral-oil-light-1-gal--2209812

I use it in one of the MFJ knock-off Cantenna type dummy loads and it works fine.
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KB1LKR
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Posts: 1898




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« Reply #13 on: August 14, 2012, 10:22:48 AM »

Re: potentially PCB based transformer/dummy load oil if your city/town has an annual hazardous waste pick-up day you might take it there in a gallon can. They'll sort it out, along w/ the other nasty old pesticides, chemicals, solvents, paints, etc.

Non PCB type transformer/dielectric cooling oil is the best (if you have a local power utility to get some from, Ameritron may also sell it by the gallon -- they sell it in their oil cooled dummy loads), but USP mineral oil is a close second. Don't use lubricating or hydraulic oils though.
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K1CJS
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« Reply #14 on: August 14, 2012, 06:22:38 PM »

That is the proper place to dispose of it, the hazardous waste pickup that most towns and cities host every six months to a year.  Unless they have it posted on a list of things NOT to be left there, they will take it.
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