I'm not all that sure that plastic reels are made of a plastic that is reusable. You can't just
"melt down and reuse" plastics like you can aluminum. Burning and melting most plastics doesn't pass
EPA air-quality muster. While there is some re-melt, most plastic recycling involves shredding.
Stuff like carpet fibers and pillow stuffing are made out of shredded PET soda bottles. Many
recycling programs only take PET and HDPE. Other plastics usually end up in landfills, whether or
not they get put in the recycling bins. Just as an example, Green Mountain/Keurig has gotten a lot
of flack because the K-cups are non-recyclable. They say their next generation equipment will
feature "green" ingredient pods.
With something like tape reels, I would first put the whole lot on eBay, with a starting bid of $1.
See if anybody wants to use them for something. For instance, some people make clocks out of old
film reels, old records and yes old tape reels. Some artist might have a plan. Etc, etc.
-- Tom Fine
----- Original Message -----
From: "Dennis Rooney" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Friday, March 21, 2014 12:33 PM
Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Recycling plastic reels
> Does Raleigh-Durham have a recycling program? If so, you may wish to
> inquire how best to put the plastic and waste paper into their hands.
> On Thu, Mar 20, 2014 at 12:55 PM, Craig Breaden <[log in to unmask]>wrote:
>> Hi folks,
>> A question: we have a collection that contains a large number of ¼"
>> audio reels, mostly 5", 6", and 7". We're at the beginning of what we
>> expect to be a long cleaning project prior to transfer. There's all matter
>> of scrunge on the boxes, which we'd prefer to keep for their inherent value
>> to the collection and which are cleaning up pretty well with conservation
>> sponges. We also have to clean some of the tape, which we're doing in a
>> vent hood using pellon. Because we want to keep the boxes and I can only
>> find NAB reels in 7" (5" slotted are available too, but I haven't pulled
>> the trigger on those yet), we have a load of 5" and 6" reels that, to put
>> on new 7" reels, would mean we'd have to ditch the original boxes. Now, I
>> can handle this - we can always photocopy the box and where there is
>> information on the reel copy that as well - and I know slotless is the
>> preferred route, but wanted to see if anyone had ever done this kind of
>> project and cleaned up the reels instead of ditching, and if so, how they
>> did it.
>> More work than it's worth, old plastic = evil, a bad idea generally,
>> or...? Any considered opinions welcome.
>> I'm asking you because someone's going to ask me before this project goes
>> much further.
>> Craig Breaden
>> Audiovisual Archivist
>> Duke University
>> David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library
>> Smith Warehouse, 114 South Buchanan Blvd
>> Bay 11, Box 90767, Durham, NC 27708
> 1006 Langer Way
> Delray Beach, FL 33483