## Tin, and Pewter, and Copper, and Iron, Oh MY!

How to build the perfect shield for your measurements? Discuss it here!
Mike S
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Joined: 25 Apr 2020, 10:24
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### Re: Tin, and Pewter, and Copper, and Iron, Oh MY!

From my amatuer research, it appears that antimony x rays are almost the same as tin, so there should be no issue with the antimony content in pewter.
Mike Sullivan
Central Coast of California, USA

Pavel M.
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Joined: 29 Feb 2020, 12:35
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### Re: Tin, and Pewter, and Copper, and Iron, Oh MY!

As far as I know (but I don't know much, tbh), using pewter is perfectly fine, at least for hobby-level gamma spectroscopy. If you can get it for reasonable price, I would go for it. Maybe it's not the optimal solution, but it should still improve your shielding by a lot.
Location: Czech Republic
Equipment:
• Spectrometer: Scintillix SCGS-01 v3.0
• Probe: Scintillix 2.5" with 3" PMT

Mike S
Posts: 25
Joined: 25 Apr 2020, 10:24
Contact:

### Re: Tin, and Pewter, and Copper, and Iron, Oh MY!

Thanks again for all the input everyone.

I have pewter, copper, and more lead on order. I'll update when it's here and I start upgrading. My shield cost has ballooned from $20 to over$150. I should end up with 2 mm copper and 3 mm pewter in critical areas: 6 inches (~150mm) up the detector and the inside of my "sample chamber". I haven't planned it out in detail yet, but I bought more sheet lead so I have options. My goal is to have a design that's modular and flexible without exposed lead (probably a 3D printed housing), but we'll see how that works out when concept meets fabrication reality.
Mike Sullivan
Central Coast of California, USA

Mike S
Posts: 25
Joined: 25 Apr 2020, 10:24
Contact:

### Re: Tin, and Pewter, and Copper, and Iron, Oh MY!

Update:
My materials are here and I'm working out how I will integrate the tin and additional lead. I bought the pewter and copper sheets from Contenti, a US based company that appears to specialize in jewelry making. They had the material in the size I wanted, the price was reasonable, and shipping cost and time was reasonable. Depending on where you live in the world, you may find a source that provides a better combination of those attributes.

https://contenti.com/lead-free-pewter-sheet-metal

I will update this thread with how it turns out.

Thanks again for all the help.

I do have a new question about the shield construction, but I think that's a different subject for a different thread.

Mike S.
Mike Sullivan
Central Coast of California, USA

iRad
Posts: 125
Joined: 01 May 2015, 12:27
Location: Stuart, FL USA
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### Re: Tin, and Pewter, and Copper, and Iron, Oh MY!

Mike - Thanks for the link to Contenti. Their prices are very reasonable and I am adding them to my contacts for future use.
Cheers, Tom Hall / IRAD INC / Stuart, FL USA
Please check out my eBay Store: http://stores.ebay.com/The-Rad-Lab

Mike S
Posts: 25
Joined: 25 Apr 2020, 10:24
Contact:

### Re: Tin, and Pewter, and Copper, and Iron, Oh MY!

Just to follow up and give some closure to this thread:

1. I added 3mm of pewter between the 2mm thick copper pipe and the lead wrap. There's still work to be done, but the pewter did eliminate the lead x ray peak (at least with just background gammas to excite it). I also added more lead, so the overall counts went down a bit from 25 counts per second to 18 (normal background is about 125 cps).
2. I think I would have been fine with less pewter, but I I added it all at once so I don't have any data to support that belief.
3. I'm definitely getting a reduced benefit to cost ratio at this point, but I plan to add even more lead to get the counts down lower.

I'll attach a background spectrum showing the progression from no shield, lead only, copper and lead, and finally copper, pewter, plus more lead.

Thanks again for the help.

Mike S.
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Mike Sullivan
Central Coast of California, USA

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