What can I do with this I-beam? (1 Viewer)

g-man

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In the woods near my house on my HOA common property...I think no one will care if I get it. A 12ft long steel i-beam 8 inch sides and 8.5 inches across from beam to beam. Really thick it measured .69 inches thick (edit) flanges. (edit)Webbing and outer support pieces are around .52 thick.

I don't have an O/A cutting torch nor a plasma cutter. So I'm not sure how to even attack this. May have to borrow a bigger welder and rent or buy a cutting torch. I was thinking sliders or rear bumper but maybe this metal is just too big. Probably would be great for making recovery points. Not that I need one hundred of them. Any re-purpose ideas? Anyone know what this is? Any guesses as to what it would weigh?

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e9999

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one never has too many I-beams or steel in general for that matter.......
having said that, it might be a bit thick for a bumper. But what a source of great material.
Such a big long thick beam is not that common among us peon DIYers. Would cost a bundle. I'd jump on it if truly abandoned and for the taking. Possibilities are endless. Gantry crane? Bunch of anvils? Chainsaw mill? Mega hydraulic press. Etc.
 

e9999

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it's pretty big even for that. From memory, the ones I saw in typical DIY garages are more like 4" across, not 8. That would make for a rather heavy crane. The supports would have to be ginormous. And for a hydraulic press you are probably talking well over 100 tons I would think, judging by how puny the supports are on my 20 ton press...
Or cut it in bits, make light duty anvils out of them and sell them on CL for $20 each....
Or heck, sell it to somebody who needs a bridge over a ditch and buy yourself a nice power tool...

as to the weight I have no idea, although I'd guess many hundreds of pounds. 600 maybe? There are online calculators out there that will tell all.
 

HandForged

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you'll definitely play hell moving it. My first thought would be to weld up some A frames for the ends of it on wheels, make it as tall as you can roll around in your shop. Having an overhead movable gantry is worth it's weight in gold. Pick up a chain hoist on rollers large enough to fit that beam and you'll be able to lift anything under the size of a tank with it.
 

KLF

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In structural parlance, that is not an I-beam, it is either a WF (Wide Flange) or an HP (H Pile) section. I don't have my tables with me to fully identify and won't be home for 3 more days. I estimate it weighs approx 45-50 lbs per foot. So if it's 12 feet long, you're looking at around 600 lbs to move it (and support it).

If you decide to use it, I can estimate the maximum safe load at the center. It's gonna be pretty high.
 

g-man

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In structural parlance, that is not an I-beam, it is either a WF (Wide Flange) or an HP (H Pile) section. I don't have my tables with me to fully identify and won't be home for 3 more days. I estimate it weighs approx 45-50 lbs per foot. So if it's 12 feet long, you're looking at around 600 lbs to move it (and support it).

If you decide to use it, I can estimate the maximum safe load at the center. It's gonna be pretty high.

I appreciate this but I don't think I can use it as a gantry.

I figured as much after research a little that it was an H beam...solid beams not tapered. and the beams being larger and welded

Although it is a good idea to use as a gantry...

I don't have a shop and live in a subdivision so my neighbors wouldn't appreciate my yard looking like a junk yard (although it kinda does already).

What about cutting a 3 inch wide length off of the beams to use as sliders? Basically a 5/8 thick flat bar. I know it wouldn't look as nice as a tubular slider but would it be solid enough? Just weld some legs onto it that in turn are welded to the frame? Maybe angle it outward slightly?

I too thought it would be around 600#s. I'm thinking I can free it up from the ground by prying with a 6 ft tamping rod. Then pull it out with my 18hp riding mower. Alternately I could strap it to a radio flyer wagon. It's close to the gravel access road so 20 or 30 feet down a grassy hill to the gravel road then about 400ft all up hill to the hard surface road. I could put my land cruiser at the top of the hill and use the winch to pull it up the hill.
 
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e9999

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must be some sturdy kid wagon you have. Long winch pull too.
Well if you don't need a gantry, no point. And if the thing is welded together, that's a different story too.
I can see you'd want to use that as a source of steel. But it's likely more valuable than that. I would sell it to somebody who needs something this unusually big and is willing to pay for it. And then buy the small bits of steel you need. It would also be quite an ordeal to cut long strips of 5/8 without a torch or plasma cutter. Yes, flat plate for sliders would look odd and would need to be much heavier to do the same job as tubes.
 

KLF

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So some more terminology, since I'm a former statics teacher ( I love statics and structural design).

The entire thing lying on the ground is not a beam, at least not like it is. It will be a beam when it is installed in a structure horizontally, holding up a load. Then it's a beam. If it is positioned vertically, then it's a column, which is probably what that shape was originally designed for, due to being square.

The part you call "beam" is actually the flange of the section. The part between the flanges is the web. Many structural shapes are welded together, but most common sizes are actually rolled, which is why the flanges will have a slight taper.
 
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That would be nice under a workbench top as a beam or under table tops as columns (to borrow from KLF's post ;)). Or sink it half in the ground for a mailbox post or to hold up a large bench vise. It could also be an un-steal-able bench in your front yard.
 

g-man

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So some more terminology, since I'm a former statics teacher ( I love statics and structural design).

The entire thing lying on the ground is not a beam, at least not like it is. It will be a beam when it is installed in a structure horizontally, holding up a load. Then it's a beam. If it is positioned vertically, then it's a column, which is probably what that shape was originally designed for, due to being square.

The part you call "beam" is actually the flange of the section. The part between the flanges is the web. Many structural shapes are welded together, but most common sizes are actually rolled, which is why the flanges will have a slight taper.

thanks for this. I couldn't remember flanges and web. Looks like the web is welded to the flanges. What kind of metal do you think this is? Cold rolled, etc. Not sure how long it's been in the ground but even the lower half of the flange that is sunk in the ground looks to only have very light surface rust. Is it true that older USA steel has more iron in it or doesn't rust like the chinese metal imported now?
 

g-man

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That would be nice under a workbench top as a beam or under table tops as columns (to borrow from KLF's post ;)). Or sink it half in the ground for a mailbox post or to hold up a large bench vise. It could also be an un-steal-able bench in your front yard.

thanks for the ideas and keep them coming. I really need to figure out what I can use this thing for. I'm not opposed to buying something to cut it up with if it's worth it. I know my dumb little 7amp grinders not going to cut it (literally and figuratively). So I'll have to pony up for a used O/A torch or plasma cutter.
 

PAToyota

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Last I took some steel scrap in from the shop, it was about $5 per hundred weight. So at 600# you'd get about $30. Hardly seems worth the trouble for that - particularly if you spend $50+ for a cart to move it.

You may get more for it on craigslist if someone else has a use for it.
 

g-man

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Last I took some steel scrap in from the shop, it was about $5 per hundred weight. So at 600# you'd get about $30. Hardly seems worth the trouble for that - particularly if you spend $50+ for a cart to move it.

You may get more for it on craigslist if someone else has a use for it.
Yeah. Scrap metal is going for very little. I meant what should I ask for it on C.L.? I'm guessing new its around 600 to 750.00 dollars.
 

PAToyota

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Hard to say. The outriggers and weight make it somewhat less usable. As discussed about potential uses, it's quite a bit heavier than would be needed for a gantry to other simple support. So you'd need to find someone wanting to span that distance and be able to carry quite a bit of weight. That limits potential buyers.
 

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