Fuel canister disposal

6:12 p.m. on September 8, 2002 (EDT)
(Guest)

What is the proper method for disposal of the primus/msr/coleman type isobutane/propane gas canisters? They all say "dispose of properly" on their labels... I assume residual amounts of fuel make the canister potentially hazardous, but I suspect most of them just end up in a landfill. What is the right way?

9:45 p.m. on September 8, 2002 (EDT)
(Guest)

I would take it to your local hazard waste disposal.
We use the small propane canisters for tent camping and that's where I take them when I recycle used vehicle fluids (oil, tranny, coolant, etc) or old paint.

When we backpack we carry kerosene fuel and use a MSR stove (dragonfly). Used a Coleman Apex before that.

Enjoy, DRS

3:56 p.m. on September 9, 2002 (EDT)
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Check with your local city or county government or whoever runs the recycling program in your area. Many local goernments run or sponsor through the garbage/refuse company a hazardous waste program that specifically includes compressed gas containers. Most, if not all, towns in the SF Bay area do, some even having a pickup on the day they gather the rest of the sorted recyclables. In my city, you take it to the city dump (very close by) and leave it under the sign that says "compressed gas cartridges".

Otherwise check with MSR, Coleman, Primus. They have lists of places that might be near you.

But definitely do *NOT* put them in a fire or where the regular garbage truck could include them in its compactor unit. They will explode and spew shrapnel all over the place, which means a possible fine and jail time for you.

5:57 a.m. on September 10, 2002 (EDT)
(Guest)

a.k.a. Warren Stevens

I don't know where I read this- perhaps with the instructions included with the stove, perhaps online:

The recommendation was to let the tank drain for an hour by attaching the stove to the spent canister and opening the valve, then to crush the canister with the heel of your boot. PAck out and then place into recycling. I've done this with no problems, though it didn't crush as flat as the illustration I remember seeing.

12:42 p.m. on September 10, 2002 (EDT)
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The old Bleuet Gaz puncture cartridges were easy - just take the stove off and let the cartridge sit for a while in the sun. But the newer Gaz and "industry standard" threaded cartridges have the rubber valve, so the suggestion of leaving the stove on with the valve open is a reasonable one. You could crush the cartridges more with a rock, piton hammer, or ax, but I would worry about a spark setting off the tiny residual amount of gas (maybe even when stomping with your heel on a rock surface). Coleman's X-series stoves come with a sort of "church key" to puncture the cartridge so you can empty them and then crush them.

I would still check with your local trash collection people about putting even the vented and crushed containers in regular recycling or trash. Some locales have pretty strict regulations. Some cartridges are aluminum, some are other metals, and the newer ones have the rubber in the valves, so they may not be allowed in the regular "aluminum" recycle collection boxes.

Side note - a while back there was a post replying to one of my posts on the valves on compressed gas cartridges. I called several of the distributors and manufacturers of the cartridges, plus talked to all of the ones at the Outdoor Retailer Show last month. Every one of them contradicted the post. First, they all said that the preferred term is "industry standard connector", with the DIN or CEN standard (number) designation, with the common usage being "Lindahl valve" (spelled that way). Second, all the companies either said they make the valves in-house themselves or have their subcontractor do it, and do not buy valves from the Lindal Group (with that spelling) mentioned by the poster. A design engineer from one of the Scandinavian companies said that Lindahl was a design engineer at their company in the 1920s and designed the valve as a modification of a valve used commonly for bicycle tubes in Scandinavia through the 1980s, adapted for stove fuels, and that the patents had long since expired, although the design now had a DIN designation and is considered as the industry standard for camp stove and lantern fittings for butane and butane mixtures. The Coleman folks told me that they would like to standardize on the "industry standard" connector and will move in that direction gradually. However, they have the heritage Gaz stoves (both the puncture and removeable, non-threaded), which have a large presence in Europe and Japan (Coleman, part of Sunbeam, bought Gaz some years back), plus the X-series, as well as the threaded connector and one other for butane stoves. This large number of existing stoves means it will take quite a while to completely go to the "industry standard." I will have to go with what the stove folks said, as far as the terminology.

5:47 p.m. on September 10, 2002 (EDT)
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Choose your method of disposal. I burn the last of the fuel, turn the canister over and hit it once with the pointed end of a rock hammer, and toss it in the dumpster.

5:53 p.m. on September 10, 2002 (EDT)
(Guest)

Re: Fuel canister valves

You should talk to the people who make the valves, rather than the stove salesmen. The valves are made by the Lindal Valve Company, part of the Lindal group, or by licensees.

8:08 p.m. on September 10, 2002 (EDT)
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Re: Fuel canister valves

Quote:

You should talk to the people who make the valves, rather than the stove salesmen. The valves are made by the Lindal Valve Company, part of the Lindal group, or by licensees.

They weren't salesmen, but design engineers who were at the OR Show to answer the technical questions. They specifically said that the Lindal Group (and Lindal Valve Company) was *not* connected with the valves they build and no licensing was involved. The comments came from engineers at all half dozen stove companies who were there, separately and independently, in response to my question of how the connector came to be so widely used and who invented it, and when. All said that the patents had long since expired. And how do you answer the engineer from the Scandinavian company who said that the man, Lindahl, did the original design in the 20s while at their company? Given the choice between your post and what design engineers (not sales types) at a half dozen different European and US companies say, I tend to believe the engineers as having the correct story (the sales types pulled the engineers over to answer my questions). If the biggest half dozen companies in the stove industry are wrong in what they told me, then you should spend your efforts educating them, so they give me and others who ask them the "real" story. The Lindal Group website, by the way, is very uninformative. Maybe you should make sure it includes an easy to find definitive history of the stove valve with references (not just a couple of poor quality images of spray can valves - which according to the same stove engineers have a different internal structure), or even something resembling a good description of the group, the associated companies, and their products.

10:06 a.m. on October 31, 2002 (EST)
(Guest)

Quote:

But definitely do *NOT* put them in a fire or where the regular garbage truck could include them in its compactor unit. They will explode and spew shrapnel all over the place, which means a possible fine and jail time for you.

You are kidding right? Jail time for putting an empty metal can in the trash? The poster above hits them with a rock hammer and yet according to you "they will explode and spew shrapnel all over the place" from inside a commercial compactor no less. Talk about over dramatizing a situation. And I thought Chicken Little was a fictional character.

10:45 a.m. on January 3, 2003 (EST)
(Guest)

Re: Fuel canister valves

Quote:

And how do you answer the engineer from the Scandinavian company who said that the man, Lindahl, did the original design in the 20s while at their company?

"Lindahl", spelled that way, is a fairly common Swedish family name (it's actually a typical 19th century "constructed" family name, made up of the names of two species of trees, lind is linden and ahl is eldertree; a name of the type used by the middle class of that time who were big time into replacing their traditional -son names with something more fancy) so I believe what those stove designers told you.

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