Only a decade ago, film photography seemed to be dying as more and more photographers turned in their old film cameras and went digital. Then about five years ago, people started to set aside their digital cameras as they took more and more of their snapshots on phones.Read More
If you have ever donated a car to a charity, you know the routine. You call to schedule a time when your car will be picked up. A flatbed truck arrives, the driver writes out a receipt, and your old car gets hauled away. A little while later, you get a receipt from the charity that took your car. That receipt should provide a value for the car you donated, which should be what the charity sold the car for.Read More
We Will Be Here Tomorrow . . . Be sure to entrust your precious metals to us
We learned that Republic Metals Corporation filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy protection on November 2nd. Republic, one of the largest gold and silver refineries in the United States, was one of our competitors.Read More
Have you heard that half of all marriages end in divorce? If you do a little research online, you will learn that statistic is not true. It seems that in about 1980, the divorce rate hit an all-time high of 40%, and is be declining today. That could be because more young people are skipping marriage - and if you don’t get married, how can you get divorced?Read More
We watched the royal wedding. Did you?
And while we were caught up in the wonderful spectacle of two young people starting their married life together, we couldn’t help noticing that a lot of jewelry was on display too. (We assume that most of the gold and gemstones we saw were the real thing, given the wealth of the celebrities in attendance and the serious nature of the event.)Read More
For today’s post, we’d like to put on our science fiction glasses and think about what the world could look like in year 2050. We admit that it is unlikely that all the following conditions will have arisen by then, but let’s consider them anyway . . .Read More
Over the years titanium has been used mostly in aerospace and industrial applications, and with good reason. Titanium is nearly as hard as steel, but it weighs much less. It is extremely resistant to corrosion and wear. It resists deformation - you are going to have to jump up and down pretty hard on a titanium ring or pipe to get it to flatten.Read More
We have already written on this blog about strange things that have been made from precious metals over the centuries. (See “Be On the Alert for Strange Objects Made from Precious Metals,” a blog post we published on November 16, 2016.) In that post, we wrote about sterling-silver prosthetic noses, gold-plated iPhone cases and other oddities.Read More
“EPA Allows Mine Company to Pursue Permits Near Alaska Bay,” an article that Becky Bohrer wrote for the Associated Press on May 12, reports that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is on the verge of approving a permit for a new copper and gold mine in the Bristol Bay area of Alaska...Read More
Twenty-five years ago, few people could have predicted that people would be using drones to prospect for gold and other precious metals. In today’s post, let’s put on our thinking caps and predict how tech-savvy treasure-seekers will be looking for gold and other precious metals in the years ahead.Read More
BMW, General Motors, and all major car makers are marketing electric and hybrid cars that use batteries. Tesla and Panasonic are selling back-up batteries for use in homes and commercial buildings. We are entering the age of the battery. Does that increasing battery production mean that this is a great time to start buying up scrapped batteries and recycling them? The answers to that question are surprising. Here are some things you need to know...Read More
If you called a precious metals refinery for an over-the-phone appraisal, you would be pretty excited to hear the words, “Your scrap could be worth an awful lot of money.” And you should be happy. The problem is, those words could lure you into one of the precious metal scams that are happening today.Read More
When you send us old catalytic converters, sputtering targets, dental scrap or other items to be processed, we recover precious metals from them that were mined from the earth years ago. Those same metals will then be reused in new applications that can include jewelry making, medical technologies, electronics manufacturing, and many more. What could be more efficient?Read More
We have reached a tipping point where tremendous numbers of products that contain precious metals are being discarded or recycled. If you are an alert investor or speculator, you can buy quantities of them at rock-bottom prices, recycle them, and earn a big return on your investment. Some of these products include...Read More
I recently overheard a young woman say, “My fiancé and I are planning to buy wedding rings that are made of eco-gold.”
That got me headed to my computer quickly so I could investigate. I quickly discovered eco-gold and ethical gold, two kinds of gold that have certain similarities. I also discovered that the gold recycling that is done at Specialty Metals Smelters and Refiners has a lot to do with both kinds. Let’s take a closer look.
This term seems to be a modern, environmentally informed way of defining gold that contains a high percentage of recycled gold. One example? Jewelry that is manufactured using gold that we have reclaimed at Specialty Metals Smelters and Refiners. People are attracted to the idea of eco-gold for some very valid reasons:
- Mining gold is hard on the environment and recycled eco-gold is kinder to the earth, air and carbon consumption
- Reusing gold is a more efficient and respectful use of natural resources than mining is
- In addition, many people seem to like the idea of wearing gold jewelry that is made of recycled old gold that once belonged to other people. To them, it adds to the richness and appeal of owning gold jewelry.
Ethical gold is the metallic equivalent of diamonds that have been mined responsibly. Like them, ethical gold must be . . .
- Mined without the use of child laborers
- Mined accordance with local environmental laws and labor standards
- Delivered with a “traceable” history that shows that it has been mined and transported legally
- Produced in countries that have responsible governments that are not engaged in persecution of citizens, genocide, or other unacceptable practices
What Are the Opposites of Eco-Gold and Ethical Gold?
I discovered that people who like eco- and ethical gold have coined another term, “dirty gold,” that defines gold that has been produced in ways that do not meet their environmental or ethical requirements.
Doing Business with Specialty Metals Smelters & Refiners
So, what does this all mean if you recycle gold with us at Specialty Metals Smelters and Refiners? For one thing, you will be doing the right thing by recycling your gold with us, because every ounce of gold that we recycle and refine here is an ounce of gold that does not need to be extracted from the ground. From an ethical perspective, we have a long history of adhering to highest ethical and environmental standards.
We also believe that the demand for eco-gold and ethical gold can only be good for our industry in the long term. Doing things responsibly is best for everyone who works in the metals industries.
On Earth Day, Let’s Agree to Recycle Metals Responsibly
The Mystery and Mastery of Gold Refining
As Gold Supplies Dwindle, Demand for Recyclable Gold Will Remain High
How the “Romance Factor” Can Distort the Perceived Value of Gold
If you’ve been reading this blog, you already know a lot about recyclable precious metals and where they can be found.
We’re going to give you some more valuable information today, in a list of precious metal alloys. You might want to print out a copy for your files or bookmark it on your browser, because it can help you find and understand valuable alloys.
Argentium Sterling Silver
This alloy of sterling silver and germanium, popular in jewelry, answers the need for a lustrous sterling-silver alloy that resists tarnishing. It is about 90% pure silver.
Since Roman times, billon has been used to mint coins and medals that look like silver, but which contain copper and other base metals. Billon coins, commemorative medals and other items contain small quantities of silver and are generally not worth recycling.
This is an alloy of silver and copper that got its name nearly 300 years ago, when the British government attempted to set up standards for silver that could be used by silversmiths. It generally contains about 90% silver, but that percentage can only be accurately determined by a qualified precious metals recycling company.
Pink, Rose, Yellow and other Colored Golds
These tinted golds are alloys that have been created by combining 24K gold with silver, rhodium, nickel, and other metals. The value of these metals can be determined after testing by Specialty Metals Smelters and Refiners.
Electrum is an interesting alloy of gold, silver and copper that occurs naturally in nature. It has been mined and used in coins since ancient times. It can contain as much as 70% pure gold, but that percentage varies. If you come into possession of ancient coins, some of them could be made of this alloy.
Mokume Gane, which has gotten to be something of a craze among people who are shopping for wedding rings, isn’t an alloy per se, but a striated metal that is made up of thin laminated layers of gold, silver, platinum, and other metals. When it is twisted and formed by a jeweler, beautiful and unusual surfaces are created. How much gold and other precious metals does Mokume Gane contain? It depends completely on the way the laminate was created and what it contains.
Platinaire is a patented alloy used in jewelry. It contains 92.5% silver, 5% platinum and 2.5% base metals. It is often made from recycled silver and platinum.
As we explored in an earlier post on this blog, alloys of platinum and rhodium are widely used in lab testing equipment, thermocouples, and other applications. And don’t forget that platinum and rhodium are often found side-by-side in catalytic converters.
Platinum sterling, like Platinaire, is an alloy of silver and platinum that is used to make jewelry. It is made of about 92.5% sterling silver, amounts of platinum that can vary from between 3% to 5%, and quantities of gallium and base metals.
Just as the name implies, this is an alloy of titanium and gold, most commonly used in jewelry and dental applications. The percentages of gold and titanium can vary widely, according to the application.
Find Out What Your Precious Metal Alloys Are Worth
Remember, a qualified precious metals refinery like Specialty Metals Smelters and Refiners can test your holdings of these alloys and quickly determine their value. Give us a call at 800-426-2344 or fill out our contact form today.
What You Need to Know about Recycling Alloys of Precious Metals
Are White, Pink, and other Golds Worth Less than Yellow Gold?
Platinum Sterling: What You Need to Know about this Precious Alloy
Some Fascinating – and Potentially Profitable – Facts You Never Knew about Refining Gold
If you’re a real estate broker or developer who deals in industrial or commercial properties, you don’t want to overlook precious metals that could be hiding in the properties that you have bought or represent.
Here is a checklist of places where precious metals could be found in the properties you are working with.
- Batches of unused welding or brazing supplies – Welding rods and wires often contain quantities of silver and other precious metals that can be profitably reclaimed. Even if you only have scrap pieces of leftover welding rods, they can be valuable.
- Drums of unused industrial chemicals – They are often worthless. Recycling them responsibly could be costly and difficult. Yet depending on what they were used for, they could contain quantities of precious metals that can be reclaimed.
- Metals shavings, powder, small bits and other scrap – If metal was being machined in a facility that you have acquired, even the shavings that have piled up under lathes and milling machines could be valuable. Unless you have them analyzed, you will never know.
- Sludge, sand and industrial byproducts – Depending on the type of processes that were taking place in the facility you own, seemingly worthless materials could contain precious metals.
- Tanks, pipes, electrodes, and filters that were used in plating processes – If a factory was involved in electroplating, silver or even gold could be recyclable from older components.
- Catalytic converters that were attached to old diesel or gas engines – They can contain quantities of platinum, palladium, rhodium and other valuable precious metals.
- Chemicals or supplies that were used in photoprocessing or x-ray processes – Even in a time when the use of traditional films and papers is dwindling, supplies that are left over from those processes are worth recycling because they contain silver.
- Older computers and electrical devices of all kinds – Older desktop and other computers and electronics, for example, contain gold that can be worth reclaiming.
- Old gauges, safety cut-offs, and monitoring devices – They are lying around collecting dust in many old factories. But depending on what their purpose was, they could contain valuable components like thermocouples that contain precious metals.
- Medical testing devices – Old x-ray, MRI, and other medical devices that have outlived their usefulness can still contain lots of valuable metals, including gold, silver and even platinum. They might look like they should be headed to the scrapyard. But don’t send them there until you know about the metals they contain.
Want to Know More?
We are here to help you understand where precious metals can be found. For a no-obligation conversation with our specialists, call us at 800-426-2344.
Buying or Selling a Business? Recycle Precious Metals before They Slip Away
Unexpected Places where Precious Metals Can Be Hiding
Why Recycling Plating Tank Scrap Can Pay You More than You Expect
Recycling and Refining: The Profitable Way to Dispose of Used Laboratory Equipment
What Precious Metals are Inside Catalytic Converters and What Are They Worth?
Are gold, platinum, palladium, silver, and other valuable metals “hiding” in your place of business? Whether you are a factory, a scrap yard, a hospital – or any other kind of organization – here are 11 questions that can help you know.
- Do you heat materials up or cool them down?
- Do you have older electronic equipment of any kind that you are about to discard?
- Do you use equipment that remotely monitors electrical activity?
- Do you remove pollutants from the air?
- Does your company engage in welding, brazing, or soldering?
- Do you apply platings of any kind to surfaces?
- Do you currently process photos or x-rays, or have you done so in the past?
- Do you have quantities of older metal-plated items of any kind, such as jewelry or silver-plated cutlery?
- Do you have a fleet of vehicles that you no longer use?
- Do you have quantities of older military surplus electronics, vehicles, armaments, or other gear
- Do you have quantities of appliances that you no longer need or are about to replace, such as stoves, air conditioners, water heaters, or furnaces?
Did You Answer Yes to Any of the Questions?
If you did, you should call Specialty Metals Smelters and Refiners at 800-426-2344 so we can help you recoup the value of the precious metals that you have on hand.
Question by question, here are some reasons why your Yes answers indicate that you could have precious metals . . .
- If you heat or cool materials during manufacturing processes, you have equipment that monitors that activity remotely. Those devices use thermocouples, which contain quantities of precious metals.
- Older electronic equipment contains printed circuit boards that contain quantities of gold and other precious metals.
- Equipment or devices that monitor electronic activity, such as IP catheters, can contain platinum, palladium, and other precious metals.
- If your operations remove pollutants from the air, especially after combustion, you could be using catalytic convers that contain precious metals.
- Used or unused quantities of welding, brazing, or soldering supplies contain silver and other precious metals.
- Any materials or equipment that are used in plating – from old sputtering targets to the sludge that accumulates at the bottom of plating tanks – contain quantities of gold, silver and other precious metals.
- New and used photographic films, papers, developing fluids and other supplies contain silver.
- Old jewelry and silver-plated items can contain valuable quantities of gold, silver, platinum, and other precious metals.
- Older vehicles contain gold in printed circuit boards, palladium in catalytic converters, and other precious metals that you can recycle.
- Military surplus items of many kinds – especially electronic devices – contain printed circuit boards and other components that can contain gold and other precious metals.
- Appliances of many kinds contain thermocouple wires that contain platinum and other precious metals.
How Solar Panel Manufacturers Let $MILLIONS Slip through Their Fingers
How to Claim the Cash that’s Hidden in Used Equipment Containing Thermocouple Wire
Recycling and Refining: The Profitable Way to Dispose of Used Laboratory Equipment
7 Strategies to Cut the Costs of Sputtering Targets and Precious Metal-bearing Manufacturing Supplies
How to Pick the Best Precious Metals Recycling Company