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Drum It Up! Steel Drum Industry News, Trends, and Issues

Posts Tagged ‘steel drum’

Stainless Steel: A Brief History

July 23rd, 2015 by Natalie Mueller

Filed under: Industry News

By definition, stainless steel is a steel alloy with a minimum of 10.5% chromium content by mass. It is stainless steel’s chromium content that differentiates it from carbon steel and provides the corrosion, rust and stain-resistant properties we have grown accustomed to for storing and shipping various materials. In the proper quantities, chromium forms a film of chromium oxide, protecting the surface and internal structure of the steel from corrosion.

The magical corrosion resistance of chromium can be traced back to 1821 when French metallurgist, Pierre Berthier, noted iron-chromium alloys resistance to some acids and suggested the alloys should be used in the construction of cutlery. Unfortunately for 19th century people and their cutlery, it was too difficult to produce the level of carbon to chromium found in today’s stainless steel. These early alloys were exciting and new, but a bit on the brittle side until the late 1890s when German chemist, Hans Goldschmidt, made his discovery. Goldschmidt developed a process for producing carbon-free chromium.

Goldschmidt’s development set several researchers down the path to alloys that, by today’s standards, would qualify as stainless steel. Year after year, more researchers and scientists developed more different high-chromium alloys and reported new properties and benefits to this ‘stain-less steel.’ It was patented, industrialized and, by the time the Great Depression hit, was being manufactured, utilized and sold en mass in the United States.

Early researchers were right to get excited by this new steel. It’s high resistance to oxidization, acids, weak bases, organics, rust and stains paired with it’s low conductivity and easy sanitation has made it an ideal material for numerous applications including, but not limited to, the containment, transport and storage of food and beverages, hazardous materials and more. At Skolnik Industries, stainless steel barrels aren’t just corrosive resistant and antibacterial, they are also made thicker and stronger than industry standards. And, because stainless steel isn’t porous or absorbent, a Skolnik stainless steel barrel may be used multiple times after proper cleaning.

I doubt Berthier knew what he had stumbled upon two centuries ago, but on behalf of Skolnik and all of our partners, we’re very grateful for the developments his curiosity set in motion.

When to Use an Overpack Drum?

July 13th, 2015 by Natalie Mueller

Filed under: Safety, Salvage Drum

An Overpack is an enclosure used to provide protection or convenience in handling a package, or to consolidate two or more packages. Overpacks are not the same as Salvage Drums and are only meant for non-leaking packages. If an Overpack drum is sold as a Salvage Drum, the DOT will hold the manufacturer and distributor liable and both parties could face a fine. The DOT does, however, expect a level of knowledge from the shipper and can hold them liable if they do not meet the proper requirements or misuse a drum.

So when should you use an Overpack Drum?

According to UN criteria and standards, Overpack Drums are certified as secure outer packaging. They are tested for solids and should not be used if the integrity of the inner package has been compromised.

An Overpack can be simply defined as a larger container into which a smaller one may be placed. An Overpack can be made of any material, the traditional choice being a 55 gallon metal drum. Overpack Drums come with their own set of UN and DOT requirements, but passing leak and pressure tests are not always among them. More often than not, Overpacks are used to facilitate the handling of another package or two. Skolnik, however, does pressure test Overpack Drums. Our Stainless steel Overpack Drums have each been tested at 1A2/X plus 15 psi hydrostatic pressure per CFR 49 for the over-packing of Toxic (Poisonous) by Inhalation packaging. But despite this rigorous testing and the fact that Skolnik products are made thicker, heavier and stronger than industry standards require, the DOT would still not consider our Overpack Drums as Salvage Drums.

But fear not, if it is a Salvage Drum you need, Skolnik can still help. Both our Overpack and Salvage Drum lines come in a variety of capacities, meet domestic and international regulations and offer extreme durability.

The Popular Kid: A 55 Gallon Steel Drum

June 25th, 2015 by Natalie Mueller

Filed under: Stainless Steel

When I tell people about Skolnik and that we produce steel drums, their minds probably drift off to a Caribbean island. However, once I clarify that these steel drums are industrial grade, UN certified containers and not the kind for island rhythm, they probably immediately think of the 55 gallon drum. That’s because the 55 gallon stainless steel drum is the popular kid.

Stainless steel drums come in a variety of shapes, sizes and materials, but the 55 gallon construction is the most ubiquitous. The 55 gallon stainless steel drum is a reliable, secure and durable choice for many different contents and needs. It’s a quality product that Skolnik Industries is proud to offer.

With a range of different steel grades, closures and liners, the Skolnik team can customize your 55 gallon stainless steel drum to fit your specific needs. We’ll ensure your drum is stronger and thicker than the industry standards so you can feel confident that whether you’re storing or shipping, your contents are safe and secure.

These drums are a tough and safe choice for many industries and uses and their ‘cousin’ product, the 55 gallon carbon steel drum is a downright workhorse. It’s no wonder drums of this size are the gestalt image when someone mentions steel drums.

While there are seemingly countless configurations, styles and sizes of steel containers, the 55 gallon stainless steel drum has earned its place at the popular table. However, at Skolnik Industries, we know that the popular choice isn’t always the right choice so our team will work with you to ensure you are using the right container for your contents and needs. Understanding your unique storage and transport needs will help us direct you towards the proper drum for your situation, and proper beats ‘popular’ every time.

Deciphering the Code: 1A2 Drums

May 4th, 2015 by Natalie Mueller

Filed under: DOT/UN, Stainless Steel

The title of this post isn’t meant to be a super-secret code; it’s meant to denote a UN certified drum of a specific material. Most simply put, a 1A2 drum is a UN certified open head steel drum. The coding helps anyone coming into contact with the drum to understand key characteristics of the container and it’s intended, safe uses, and proper shipping and storage procedures.

So what goes into these codes? Well, the ‘1’ indicates that this container is a drum. Of course, if you saw the drum, you’d recognize that it is a drum, but on paper, such as shipping and storage manifestos, the container classification is pertinent to proper operations and organization. The ‘A’ informs the reader that this container is made of steel. The material of a container speaks volumes to how it should be used, filled and any safety requirements. Finally, the ‘2’ tells the reader that this steel drum has an open head, meaning the lid of the drum is detachable and can be removed.

With this knowledge, anyone can decipher the UN coding: this container is an open head steel drum. And should be used as such.

Open head? That means this drum has a removable lid secured to the drum with a bolt ring or a lever lock to prevent the container from opening in transit.

Steel? Fantastic. Steel drums are often used for the containment of chemicals, pharmaceuticals and food for storage or transport. Stainless steel is a compatible material for the containment of a wide variety of different products and items, but we still recommend discussing your needs with a Skolnik representative before choosing a specific type of drum.

Now that you can read the code, call Skolnik to learn more about our products and what type of container is the best fit for your needs.