Re: Good solvent
- Free leftover gasoline on Craigslist, Jim? I didn't know there was a market for such things! I guess these days it would all be unleaded, so at least you're not going to get those grey metal deposits from it. But it does still leave a residue? Hmmm . . . I guess you get what you (don't) pay for.
Even a small-sized US town should have an auto parts supply store of some sort, so it's not as if you're going to have citrus thinner shipped in from some exotic faraway place or pay some exorbitant price for it. It's now a rather mainstream product. I don't know how tight your finances are, but a small jug will probably last you for a year or more and be well under $10 . . . unless your constantly overhauling hubs, which would then imply you're probably doing some of it for other people, getting nominal pay for that service and, thus, no longer having to scrounge for used gasoline. :-)
The citrus thinners sold at green building supply stores will invariably be more expensive, since its purity will be such that finish carpenters will want to use relatively small amounts of it to do things like cleaning sawdust from the pores of wooden kitchen cutting boards before an oil finish is applied. This is the stuff I buy, since I might find myself doing exactly what I've just described above. There might be a few more impurities in the less expensive auto supply stuff, but this shouldn't be an issue when dunking that old S-W hub for an overnight degreasing.
Ben in Tucson
Cannot speak to others who have employed the gasoline, but I used old stuff that was going to recycling center, anyway, which is about as "green" as can be. We get people offering it for free from time to time on Craigslist, leftovers from generators, etc. It worked great, not my first choice since it does leave residue as it evaps off and I hate the smell. Also, gas is about 1/13 the pre-shipping cost per gallon of the citrus stuff, which remains a big factor for some of us.
- In Florida it is unlawful to dispense gas into glass containers, and I bet other states prohibit it. I could imagine some sort of electrical activity released as a glass container separated into pieces, even without a metal involved. And then the liquid gas and the vapors released from within would be suspended or splashing about, gaining lots of surface interface with the air and no doubt go fireball bonkers.Yeeeks!!! I guess I'm lucky the ca-ca didn't hit the fan and I'm not hideously burned or worse. Older, stale gas like I what used to clean bike parts that time has lost some volatility, but still....
From: bikealfa <mtwils@...>
Sent: Tuesday, March 19, 2013 10:57 PM
Subject: [Geared_hub_bikes] Re: Good solvent
I was strongly advised against gasoline in my younger days, back when it had lead. It was a contact poison as well as poisonous when ingested, and it had a very low flash point. Sheldon Brown said you could throw a lit match into a container of kerosene and nothing would happen. Gasoline was not that stable. The gas stations would not even put it in a glass jar; they claimed that if the glass broke you could get sparks that would set it alight.
I suspect that today's gasoline formulations are less poisonous and less volatile than the stuff of 40 years ago, but ...
Today I use very little solvent for washing bike parts. The 40 year old Sears wheel bearing grease does not seem to harden up, nor does the Phil grease that I got from a basement bike shop that went out of business. When I do need something I use alcohol or paint thinner, because those are available in the garage.
I don't wash chains, I lube them periodically and throw them away when they are worn out.