Wire Stripping Oven



About: Former electronics technician, former MIS tech support, former corporate call center help desk tech support

Recently the Golf Club where my brother works as a Greens assistant upgraded the control systems for the watering of the golf course. This left a lot of copper wiring which would have been trashed. My brother bundled it up and kept it. At the beginning of this year, April to be exact he gave me several bundles of wire a burlap bag, and one of those big plastic totes with wire. 0,6,8,10,12,14 gauge. All together at the end of stripping the wire I made about $400.00 Canadian. Price for clean shinny copper at the time $3.35 a pound, price for cladded copper that is with the plastic on it 85 cents a pound. A bloody giveaway at that price.

Step 1: The Wire Stripper

Copper shinny copper poor man's gold what to do, what to do, Google to the rescue - entered copper wire stripper, many designs, I can't weld, don't have a welder, prefer to work with wood, plastic and sheet metal, made my own, idea and concept good, unit did not meet my expectations. See picture will not describe it.

Step 2: In Comes the Heat

The light bulb in da brain clicked on, what if I used heat to soften the plastic. AHA I already have the heat source, my shop oven. So I tried it, worked to soften the plastic but the wires were bent, by the time i untangled a wire and attached to vise grip it was cooling off.Was working in the garage in April, a bit cold. So what now genius? Disassemble the shop oven and create wire stripping oven.

Step 3: The Wire Stripping Oven

1 shop oven

some oven wire - HIGH TEMP- the stuff with braiding

oven connectors- HIGH TEMP

some sheet metal

some metal screws

some wire mesh

some plywood

and other assorted things as needed


drill - cordless or corded will do

drill bits


metal shears

screw drivers


After disassembling the shop oven I checked my lumber stash that is the picture of my garage roof. I keep my found lumber there. I found some pieces of 3/4 inch by 9 inch 36 inch plywood there.Perfect size not much cutting needed.

I cut the heating element holder in half so that it would fit in the new box. One set of elements on top and one set in the bottom, just like a toaster oven.

Step 4: Let the Stripping Begin

As can be seen from the picture the wire was all tangled and bent. So I made my life easier by untangling and straightening the wires, cut the long ones to size to fit the oven. The oven is about 9x9x32 rectangular.After loading the wire in the oven, turned on the heat at low point, the plastic softened and I could remove the plastic cover without much effort.

Some effort needed but in the end I got some cash, and a new shop oven, more compact and i can process longer pieces of plastic material, even 6x32 inch pipes.



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    6 Discussions


    6 months ago

    Long ago in almost another life, a friend and I had a building demolition business and it irked me to see bundles of wire off to the landfill in a dump truck. I brought home huge quantities of salvaged copper wire, tied one end to the fence and another to a 2x2 about three feet long. My 10 year old (he's in his 50's now) pulled the wire taut with the stick tied on the unsecured end. I walked the length of it with a hook bladed carpet knife stripping off the top of the insulation. Was a simple matter to go back to the fence and pull the rest of the insulation off the partly bared wire, put the insulation in the trash and bundle up the clean wire in a box to resell. We collected about a pick-up bed full and took it to the scrap metal dealer. He got half the money and life was good. Don't remember how the purchase rate for clean copper. Nowhere near 3.00 a pound, though. I do remember that the purchase price for lead (roof jacks before much PVC was used) was 15 cents a pound.

    1 reply

    Reply 6 months ago

    Well Jimmy the situation in the world today reminds of a story of a man going to the market riding a donkey. On the way there he was eating figs. The ones that weren't ripe enough he bounced of the donkey's ass. On the way back he was hungry but this time he was walking and looking for the figs that he bounced. Now in North America as well as everywhere else there are hundreds thousands of landfills. Guess what they are doing in Europe they are mining the landfills for all recyclabe materials and burning the garbage to produce electricity. The land gets used for building houses on.

    Waldemar Sha

    6 months ago

    I have had a neighbour who was collecting a scrap metal from people for sale at his home. He used to just burn the plastic off the wire in his yard. Those were the days... For everyone in 300m radius. I'm glad you're using the oven just to soften the casings. It might be usefull for me since I have a bunch of old wire scraps and I plan to get into some wire jewelery making in the future.

    3 replies
    yeagerxpWaldemar Sha

    Reply 6 months ago

    Burning is a NO! NO!. I have a legal smoker in my backyard for smoking sausages. A couple of years ago I was smoking sausages, one of my neighbours called the fire department thinking I was burning leaves. They got to my backyard and saw it was a legal smoker and said no problem here. I gave them a couple of sausages for their trouble. So NO, NO BURNING.

    Waldemar Shayeagerxp

    Reply 6 months ago

    I assume you're from Canada. Is it so strict in there about leaves and smokers? ... On second thought, probably, it's more like we here in Ukraine who doesn't give a damn about anything...
    BTW the neughbour has died few years ago, so no burning indeed.

    yeagerxpWaldemar Sha

    Reply 6 months ago

    Yes Toronto No burning anything in the city. You are only allowed barbeque and smoker