What Effect Will Trends in Healthcare Testing Have on Precious Metals?

What Effect Will Trends in Healthcare Testing Have on Precious Metals?

If you went to see your physician a few years ago and you were having chest pains, chances are that your doctor sent you to get an x-ray (a technology that relied heavily on silver), an electrocardiogram (which used printed circuit boards that contained gold and silver), and a round of blood tests (which didn’t have much to do with precious metals of any kind).

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Why Your Local Museum Is Probably Sitting on Undiscovered Precious Metals

Why Your Local Museum Is Probably Sitting on Undiscovered Precious Metals

We have written before on this blog about good places to hunt for undiscovered precious metals – places like old jewelry factories, wells, drain pipes, and even graveyards.

Today, we would like to add one more place to look for old gold, silver, and platinum items that you can recycle profitably . . .

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How Hospital Administrators Can Become Recycling Stars

How Hospital Administrators Can Become Recycling Stars

If you are an administrator at a hospital, chances are good that you have an unusual opportunity . . .

You can turn unused supplies and equipment into a significant source of income

Are you taking advantage of the opportunity to recycle all the unused precious metals that can be found in your facilities? If not, let’s find out how.

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These Precious Metals Items Are Worth More than They Look

These Precious Metals Items Are Worth More than They Look

A few years ago, a man looked down at the bottom of a stream in northern California and saw something shiny poking out from the sand and gravel that surrounded it. He pulled it out and it was a gold nugget. It was absolutely beautiful!

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Where to Find Great Big Chunks of Gold

Where to Find Great Big Chunks of Gold

If you read this blog regularly, you have noticed that a lot of our blog posts give advice on where you can find little quantities of gold. We have written about how we can extract small amounts of gold from gold-plated jewelry, from old eyeglass frames, from printed circuit boards, and even from small piles of sweepings from factory floors.

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Museum Closings Can Be Your Opportunities to Acquire Valuable Items at Low Prices

Museum Closings Can Be Your Opportunities to Acquire Valuable Items at Low Prices

Just last year I curated an art show in a museum near Atlantic City, New Jersey. It was a beautiful, modern museum that had been in operation for about a decade. But the show that I put together was the last one that would ever be held at that museum, which was closing its doors for good. Why? Because it had become too expensive to keep the place open.

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We Will Be Here

We Will Be Here

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.

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The Story of “Arsenic Avenue” Highlights the Dangers of Exposure to Chemicals Left Behind by Gold Processing

The Story of “Arsenic Avenue” Highlights the Dangers of Exposure to Chemicals Left Behind by Gold Processing

“Poison fears on 'Arsenic Avenue': Families forced out of their homes as studies find suburban street was built on toxic soil,” an article that appeared in Australia’s Daily Mail on September 6, 2018, points out all too clearly the health dangers that can result when people are exposed to poisons that are left behind near old gold mines.

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How to Inventory Your Precious Metals

How to Inventory Your Precious Metals

What kind of precious metals do you own? Bullion bars or coins? A mixed collection of jewelry items you have picked up at tag sales and estate sales? A garage full of catalytic converters? A batch of old computers?

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Inside the Government’s Precious Metals Recovery Program

Inside the Government’s Precious Metals Recovery Program

You might have heard rumors that the U.S. Government operates a secret program to recycle precious metals. That rumor holds that the government, unknown to U.S. citizens, is processing vast quantities of gold, platinum and silver.

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Debunking Common Misconceptions about Separating Precious Metals Scrap

Debunking Common Misconceptions about Separating Precious Metals Scrap

You have a pile of mixed metal scrap - shavings, powder, scrapings, what have you. You know that the batch probably contains quantities of platinum, gold, silver and maybe even platinum family metals like rhodium and osmium.  And you also have a strong suspicion that your pile of stuff contains small quantities of stainless steel, aluminum, copper and other low-value metallic scrap.

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Storing Precious Metals Safely

Storing Precious Metals Safely

Up until a few years ago, it was difficult to see genuine videos of thieves at work. But now that security cameras are just about everywhere to record activity in public places, homes, and stores, it is easy to watch videos of thefts of all kinds. If you search for “theft” or jewel heist” on YouTube, you will find dozens of actual videos of crimes taking place.

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What Does Science Fiction Tell Us about the Future Value of Platinum Scrap?

What Does Science Fiction Tell Us about the Future Value of Platinum Scrap?

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 . . .

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Desperate Times? Here’s How to Liquidate Your Precious Metals Fast, for Top Dollar

Desperate Times? Here’s How to Liquidate Your Precious Metals Fast, for Top Dollar

Back in his student days, our friend Joe was short of cash one month. So to pay his rent, he sold his high school ring to a jewelry shop on 47th Street in New York.

“I took it in, we struck a deal on price and before he even paid me, the guy behind the counter stuck my ring on a mandrel, grabbed a big hammer, and smashed the gem stone that was mounted in it. I left the store with some cash in my pocket, but I wasn’t feeling too great about the whole experience.”

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What Are the Weirdest Objects Ever Made from Precious Metals?

What Are the Weirdest Objects Ever Made from Precious Metals?

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.

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Looking for Gold and Silver in Collectible Knives

Looking for Gold and Silver in Collectible Knives

People are collecting folding pocket knives, hunting knives, highly stylized custom knives crafted by skilled artisans, ancient knives, and knives that fall into other niches. The question is, do any of them contain silver or gold? The short answer is yes, they do and if you take a close look at an unusual knife, it could contain small decorations and “extras” that are made of silver or even gold or platinum. 

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Become a Rich Environmentalist by Recycling Precious Metals

Become a Rich Environmentalist by Recycling Precious Metals

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?

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How Are Precious Metals Recovered from Electronic Scrap?

If you have old cellphones, computers, or other electronic devices, you probably have some questions about how you can make the most money by recycling them. Here is a basic rule of thumb to keep in mind . . .

If the process that is used to extract the precious metals in those devices is too costly, the devices might not be worth recycling at all

Shown: electronic scrap gold plated pins sent to Specialty Metals by our customers for recycling and refining.

Shown: electronic scrap gold plated pins sent to Specialty Metals by our customers for recycling and refining.

It Makes Sense . . .

If you spend time with a pair of snippers removing the gold connecting pins from old computer CPUs and forward those pins to a top precious metals refinery like Specialty Metals Smelters and Refiners, you will get a high dollar return for every ounce of those pins that you send in. It makes sense, because comparatively little processing is required to separate the gold that those pins contain from other metals and contaminating materials. In contrast, if you contact us and ask about several hundred intact cellphones that you would like to recycle, you might learn that the cost of processing those phones is higher than the value of the precious metals that they contain. After all, one cellphone usually contains only a few cents’ worth of gold.

For a bit of perspective, here is a brief rundown on the different processes that are typically used by precious metal refiners to extract gold, silver, platinum and palladium from electronic scrap, or E-Scrap, as it is called in the recycling business.

Whole Device Refurbishing or Remanufacturing

This is a recycling option that can only be used for current-model smart phones and other devices that can still have use if they are refurbished by the manufacturer or another company.

Extracted-Component Recycling

The case study we cited above – the recycling of gold pins that have physically been removed from electronic devices – is a good example. If you do the physical work of removing components that contain valuable quantities of precious metals, you will get a higher dollar return for every ounce of material that you send in to be recycled.

Shredding, Granulating, Heat Processing and Other Industrial Recycling

These processes are done by large industrial recycling companies that grind up circuit boards and components and use a variety of processes to separate and extract the materials that they contain. Shredded printed circuit boards, for example, can have their ferrous materials removed by magnets, then that residue can be sifted and searched for precious metals, then that residue can be melted so that plastics can be recycled and used in other products.

Which Process Will Yield the Most Value?

As you have already observed, the “purer” recycling options (like extracted component recycling) are likely to put more dollars in your pocket than are the “dirtier” options (like shredding and granulating).

Not sure which is the best way to get the most value from your E-Scrap? Give us a call at 800-426-2344 and we’ll be pleased to explain what your best options are.

Related Posts:

A Brief History of Circuit Boards and the Gold They Contain
Do Tablet Computers Contain Recyclable Precious Metals
Watch the Gold You Can Recycle from Circuit Boards Pile Up in these Videos
Extracting Gold from Ceramic IC Chips
Four Kinds of Easy-to-Overlook Electronic Devices that Contain Gold