There are loads of Internet content depicting the usefulness of salvaged innards found in defunct microwave ovens. [Mads Nielsen] is an emerging new vblogger with promising filming skills and intriguing beginner electronics content. He doesn’t bring anything new from the microwave oven to the dinner table, yet this video should be considered a primer for anybody looking to salvage components for their hobby bench. To save some time you can link in at the 5 minute mark when the feast of parts is laid out on the table. The multitude of good usable parts in these microwave ovens rolling out on curbsides, in dumpsters, and cheap at yard sales all over the country is staggering and mostly free for the picking.
The harvest here was: micro switches, X and Y rated mains capacitors, 8 amp fuse, timer control with bell and switches, slow turn geared synchronous 4 watt motor 5 rpm, high voltage capacitor marked 2100 W VAC 0.95 uF, special diodes which aren’t so useful in hobby electronics, light bulb, common mode choke, 20 watt 68 Ohm ceramic wire-wound resistor, AC fan motor with fan and thermostat cutout switches NT101 (normally closed).
All this can be salvaged and more if you find newer discarded units. Our summary continues after the break where you can also watch the video where [Mads] flashes each treasure. His trinkets are rated at 220 V but if you live in a 110 V country such components will be rated for 110 V.
Let’s don’t forget the high voltage (2000 V secondary) microwave oven transformer (MOT) which in newer microwaves is quickly being replaced by switch mode power supplies. DANGER! Don’t toy with this unless you really know what you’re doing! [Mads] knows, plus he plans on rewinding the transformer for much more useful high current low voltage applications. [Mads] needs only watch [Matt's] excellent videos on salvaging microwave oven transformers.
Not of terrible interest is the heart of the microwave oven, the magnetron tube which emits microwaves to heat your food. Don’t take apart the magnetron or play with it for several good reasons! First, there is the obvious danger of 2.45 GHz microwave radiation. Second, some magnetrons are made with a pink ceramic insulator containing beryllium oxide (beryllia). Beryllia is a known carcinogen and dangerous chemical hazard if broken up, handled or ingested.