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Clint Bach
02-15-2018, 1:32 PM
Almost no cost burnisher.

materials: used automobile valve. In this case an exhaust valve from a Toyota racing engine. Free no cost.
short piece of emt conduit for the ferrul. Scrap from trash. Free no cost. A piece of scrap poplar for the handle. No cost. Enough epoxy to glue the valve stem into the handle. Not much cost. Finish for the handle. Not much cost. Sandpaper. Not much cost.

procedure: cut the valve end off of the valve. The valve end is not as hard as the stem. Cut a short piece of the emt for the handle. Drill a hole in one end of the handle blank. Turn the blank to shape between centers and finish. Glue ferrul and stem into, onto, handle. Sand ferrul on lathe just for beauty

that's it.... Cheap, easy, effective...

just a heads up on choosing the valve... Some valves have sodium in the stem to help cool the valve. You must not cut into a sodium cored valve. Liquid sodium burns in contact with water. Or so I've heard. No experience with that. Rumor...

this valve is stainless steel. It is hard enough. Regular valves may be harder.

enjoy!

clint

Frederick Skelly
02-15-2018, 10:28 PM
Good idea Clint!

John K Jordan
02-16-2018, 8:37 AM
Someone gave me some valves from some sort of big engine and they were hardened steel - perfect for making special tools. I never heard about valves with sodium inside - I'll have to research that.

Clint Bach
02-16-2018, 11:35 AM
Ok. I googled sodium exhaust valves and got a bunch of hits. It seems only exhaust valves have sodium so intake valves are probably ok. The question is how do you identify an intake valve in a pile of loose valves with no matching engines? Hmmmm. Mechanics tend to have loose valves.

c

John K Jordan
02-16-2018, 12:53 PM
...The question is how do you identify an intake valve in a pile of loose valves with no matching engines? Hmmmm. Mechanics tend to have loose valves.


Get your brother-in-law to cut it. Stand back. I know what sodium will do.

Clint Bach
02-16-2018, 3:02 PM
So what will sodium do? I have no direct experience with the stuff. I sort of know what brother in laws will do. They tend to look at me suspiciously. Do what with that thing you just handed me? Are you sure this will hurt you more than me?

C

John K Jordan
02-16-2018, 3:58 PM
So what will sodium do? I have no direct experience with the stuff. I sort of know what brother in laws will do. They tend to look at me suspiciously. Do what with that thing you just handed me? Are you sure this will hurt you more than me?

C

Sodium metal will react with water and produce hydrogen gas in the process. The reaction can be vigorous and the hydrogen gas can ignite and even explode. It can even react to water vapor, although not as vigorously in the open air as in liquid water. At one time I worked where there was a decades-old mothballed research facility that had tanks of sodium and of potassium, another reactive metal both stored under inert gas to prevent reaction. A friend of mine had the task of checking the inert gas every day to make sure it remained safe. The sodium was eventually removed at a huge expense, a process that took careful engineering and months of work by experts.

I saw videos once where drums of sodium were "disposed of" in water - just one could have killed a boatload of people!

I suspect the amount of sodium in a valve is very small but I'd still be afraid of cutting into it unprotected. If you are tempted, I'll send you a carbide burnishing rod as a President's Day present! :)

379215

JKJ

Mel Fulks
02-16-2018, 4:14 PM
The 1/4 inch diameter carbide laminate trim router bits work well too.

Gregory Halye
02-16-2018, 8:31 PM
So what will sodium do? I have no direct experience with the stuff. I sort of know what brother in laws will do. They tend to look at me suspiciously. Do what with that thing you just handed me? Are you sure this will hurt you more than me?

C

As mentioned Sodium metal will react hydroscopically and quite violently in the presence of actual water. It has to be stored in an inert environment away from oxygen and from water. It is a very light silvery colored metal that is soft enough to easily cut or carve with your fingernails, which is highly advised against trying, as it will also pull water from your skin, causing severe burns. As previously mentioned, an inert gas (any noble gas like neon or xenon, ect) is the typical industrial environment to store sodium metal and other such highly reactive metals, but another safe method is to store it under oils. As a side note, if you have ever heard of napalm .... this is how those bombs basically work. You have 3 fragile containers (glass or plastic, ect) that contain 3 different items ... Sodium metal (Na on the periodic table), Palm oil (the source for NaPalm becomes quite clear at this point), and water. Once dropped, the containers all break, spreading water and palm oil everywhere, with little beads of sodium metal skittering around through the water, igniting everything as it goes.

Have you ever watched the movie "We Were Soldiers", which took place in the jungles of Vietnam? In one scene of that movie, a grenade exploded among several of the marines, which had contained Phosphorus, another metal that is in the same reaction group as sodium... Phosphorus is slightly MORE reactive than sodium, but does basically the same thing. It reacts with the oxygen in just about any environment, even stripping it away from water molecules. This alone is fairly dangerous, as it's a highly exothermic reaction, hot enough to cause fires and producing open flames. The more dangerous aspect is the secondary reactions from this behavior. It produces pure hydrogen gas, from the hydrogen atoms left over after stripping oxygen from the water. This hydrogen, in open air, with an open flame nearby .... hydrogen gas explosion is the result.


I saw a the same sodium disposal videos ... also saw one where they disposed of a 55-gallon drum that contained cadmium. (honestly, they should have saved that one for NiCad batteries, back then) The resulting explosion was nearly as much as half the sodium combined.


And finally, a bit of insight ...

Sodium metal is quite dangerous and toxic to the human body.

So is Chlorine gas ... very poisonous.

We can't live without either in our bodies, as sodium and chlorine ions .... and the easiest way for us to consume them safely is by adding a little table salt (sodium chloride) to your food.

Clint Bach
02-16-2018, 9:03 PM
And to think we drive around with this stuff thrashing around at thousands of rpms just a few feet away from our laps in the engine compartment. Scary!

C

Lee Schierer
02-16-2018, 10:39 PM
Ok. I googled sodium exhaust valves and got a bunch of hits. It seems only exhaust valves have sodium so intake valves are probably ok. The question is how do you identify an intake valve in a pile of loose valves with no matching engines? Hmmmm. Mechanics tend to have loose valves.

c

In certain air-cooled engines, the exhaust valves are sodium filled. During engine operation, the sodium inside the hollow valve melts. When the valve opens, the sodium splashes down into the valve head and collects heat. Then, when the valve closes, the sodium splashes up into the valve stem. Heat transfers out of the sodium, into the stem, valve guide. In this way, the valve is cooled. Sodium-filled valves are light and allow high engine RPM for prolonged periods.

Rick Potter
02-17-2018, 11:13 PM
Kitchen "steel" for knife edges. Thrift store...next to nothing cost, and it is about a foot long.

Bruce Wrenn
02-18-2018, 9:56 PM
I use a "push rod" for my burnisher. Neat little ball on each end, and fits into a file handle perfectly. Butcher steels run about a buck in thrift stores. Avoid the diamond ones for this purpose.

Clint Bach
02-19-2018, 11:26 AM
Push rods... I'll have to try that. Good idea.

C

Bill Dufour
03-27-2018, 9:40 PM
Sodium filled valves are often used in diesel engines. I read the way to dispose was to nick with a grinder to expose the sodium and throw into a metal bucket of water. I would guess a sodium filled valve would weight less then a equal size solid steel valve.
Bill D.

Clint Bach
03-28-2018, 1:06 AM
Uh oh, now I've gotta get a sodium filled Diesel engine valve and a metal bucket of water. I've got a grinder. What kind of safety and protection are recommended? Have you seen this happen? Sounds like too much fun...

It's that moth to a candle thing.

C

Bruce Wrenn
03-28-2018, 9:57 PM
Attended Roland Johnson card scraper seminar at Woodworking show last weekend. He recommended using either a high quality screw driver, or "push rod." Seems great minds think alike.

Wayne Jolly
03-29-2018, 12:41 PM
I used a piece of shock absorber shaft.

Wayne

Tom Stenzel
03-30-2018, 2:40 AM
I used a new exhaust valve for a Slant Six engine. It's worked for a couple decades now.

Sodium filled valves were also found in some heavy duty Ford gasoline truck engines. That was in the '70s. It would take some doing to come up with a list of engines with those valves.

As far as it being dangerous in a car engine there's plenty of danger under the hood. My Dad was watching a couple guys fooling around with a car, revving the engine while they looked at it. The fan came apart and killed one of them. This was sometime before WWII. You think Dad would ever rev an engine while poking his head under the hood? He did rebuilds, engine swaps, upgrades (usually to small block Chevy) but when the engine ran no one was in the line of fire. Ever.

-Tom

Brian Thornock
05-01-2018, 1:21 PM
I also do machining and use old/dead end mills. I have an end mill manufacturer just down the road from me and I have stopped in before asking for old, broken end mills, and they just give me a few out of a scrap jug they have of them. Put the broken end in the handle, and voila, a great little burnisher.