Discovering materials: metal scrap

The word metal scrap is defined by Treccani vocabulary “piece or complex of pieces of broken objects and products”, but there are many aspects that go beyond this brief description and that we want to discover in this article.
In the common sense of the last century, the scrap dealer was someone who recovered various scrap of metals from homes and factories, transporting them on vehicles that looked worn and sometimes unsuitable.
Nowadays metal scrap has acquired a new value, which makes it not simply a waste, but a resource to be recovered, selected, treated and returned to the production cycle, optimizing its reuse and minimizing its waste.
The scrap dealer himself has therefore acquired greater professionalism, the legislation has set clear and timely rules to which everyone must comply to preserve the environment and combine the needs of the economy with those of ecology and sustainability.
The same evolution involves those who put themselves at the service of the scrap cycle, studying and implementing increasingly specialized solutions aimed to meet the needs of today and tomorrow.
In this way new machines are developed for classification, weighing, treatment and transport of metal scrap of various kinds: iron, steel, aluminum, cast iron, copper, zinc, brass, lead …
And with the evolution of science and technology, this list is continually enriched, requiring the recovery of rare metals that today are used only in market niches, but that tomorrow could become crucial.
But let’s go deeper and discover some types of metal scrap.
The classification distinguishes primarily ferrous scrap and non-ferrous scrap, while in use we distinguish also small or big metal scrap.
The nature and format of the scrap naturally characterize the needs of the scrapyard in terms of machinery and vehicles for collection and transport.
It is therefore interesting to evaluate some concrete examples:
Iron: naturally falls within the class of ferrous scrap. The origins are the most varied since it is widely used in civil engineering works (for example for the construction of railway tracks – and in this specific case comes in the form of long profiles that require for example to be transported with a straight platform instead of gooseneck), in construction and in production departments of small and large manufacturing companies.
Sheet metal and small scrap metal: this is a type of scrap of smaller size, which is managed by specific means and allows an excellent percentage of recovery and less wear of the means used.
Copper: very common among non-ferrous metal scraps because it is widely used in plant engineering thanks to its properties as a good electric conductor.
Car demolitions: the main task of the scrap dealer in this case is to reclaim the residues from the polluting parts such as battery and oil in order to recover the metal parts that can be recycled. In this case, for the transport, a gooseneck platform is preferred because, being particularly low, it allows to load larger volumes.
Like the role of scrap and scrap dealer in the economy, even the industrial vehicles for metal scrap have evolved considerably over the years to respond more effectively and efficiently to the different needs of the market.
Until the 80s, scrap dealers generally used pickup trucks, vans and trucks of various types, sometimes equipped with fixed boxes to be unloaded by hand, sometimes equipped with small tipping bodies and occasionally fitted with small cranes for collection. These vehicles were generally borrowed from building and craft sectors and were not designed to meet the specific needs of the collection and transport of metal scrap.
The introduction of Canguro semitrailers on the market since the early 80s has opened a real segment, offering scrap dealers a robust and manageable solution designed specifically for them.
These semi-trailers were in fact particularly robust (made of wear-resistant steel and reinforced with profiles and uprights), stable (thanks to the gooseneck chassis that guarantees an extremely low loading floor) and manageable.
The positioning of the crane was also designed specifically to facilitate its work and optimize the spaces, allowing the scrap to be collected capillary at the recovery points.
In the following years, this market niche has also evolved and expanded thanks to the growth in demand and the increasing attention paid to the recovery of residuals such as scrap metal, which are now considered more and more as resources and not just waste.
Gervasi Ecologica is pleased to contribute actively to this evolution with a strong commitment to research and development of innovations aimed to support the transition from a linear economy that generates waste to a circular economy that considers each scrap a resource to be recycled and to which we can give new life.

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