gold and other metals

Discussion in 'General Survival and Preparedness' started by hamba, Mar 29, 2011.


  1. hamba

    hamba Monkey+

    A while ago i learned that in every tone of scrape electronics there is at least 17 kg of gold 1 kg of platinum so a scavenger could make a fair amount of money in a reasonable amount of time this would be relatively useful in an extended collapse of society

    the method of releasing these materials could be done by players and a lot of enthusiasm...or if you held little regard
    for you're environment then i suppose you could burn them out but then you would have to go about separating these metals which would require further research

    a draw back of this process is its time consuming and would attract some hungry hoodlums looking for their meal ticket so be sure to protect yourself if you ever find yourself using such a method.

    also i am not entirely sure of this method and its facts so i will research more into it and add it to this thread

    BTW this is my first post so please be kind
     
  2. Gator 45/70

    Gator 45/70 Monkey+++

    Post the process please..??
     
  3. hamba

    hamba Monkey+

    the following is the method i found with a small bit research it is not my own personal work and was obtained from ehow

    things you'll need:


    * Scrap electronics

    * Thick rubber gloves
    * Rubber apron
    * Face shield
    * Respirator mask
    * Glass beaker
    * Battery (9 or 12 volt)
    * Wires (any size)
    * 2 alligator clips
    * Small stainless steel rod
    * 2 glass beakers
    * Sodium hydroxide (NaOH)
    * Sodium cyanide (NaCN)
    * Sodium meta nitro benzene sulphonate
    * Aqua Regina
    * Sodium meta bisulphite

    1.

    * 1

    Start by obtaining as many scrap electronics components to reclaim gold from. Generally speaking, older electronics work better because enhanced manufacturing processes use less gold than older electronics, so an old 386 or 486 computer, for example, contains more gold than a modern computer. Old analog cell phones also contain more precious metal than newer digital phones. Of course, new electronics also have gold that can be refined, but never turn away old equipment.

    * 2

    Cut all of the gold-plated components out of the electronics. You do not want to waste your time treating the entire motherboard of a computer when all of the gold is plated on the connector pins, processors and or chips. Cut all of the gold-plated components off the circuit boards. Do not throw the boards away though, because there is still silver and other precious metals you may wish to reclaim later.

    * 3

    Prepare yourself for working with chemicals. You will be using one chemical process to remove the gold plating and another chemical process to refine the gold to pure 24k fine gold. Working with chemicals means taking safety precautions to prevent chemical burns and to block out toxic fumes. You should wear a rubber apron and thick rubber gloves any time you are handling chemicals. You should also wear a respiratory mask similar to what asbestos workers wear and a face shield to protect against splashing.

    * 4

    Make an electrolyte for your reverse electroplating process. The electrolyte is a solution that acts as a chemical bath for your precious metal, as well as a conductor of electricity. Make the electrolyte by pouring a mixture of 70 percent sodium cyanide (NaCN), 15 percent sodium hydroxide (NaOH) and 15 percent sodium meta nitro benzene sulphonate. Carefully pour these ingredients into a glass chemistry beaker and stir them with a glass wand.

    * 5

    Set up your power source so that it will be ready to be connected. Take two pieces of wire and strip about an inch of insulation off of the ends with a pair of wire strippers. On each piece of wire, connect a small alligator clip to one end of the wire. Connect the other end of the wire to a 9- or 12-volt battery. Use the large square batteries with spring-like posts on top. Connect one wire to the negative post and one wire to the positive post.

    * 6

    Prepare the anode. Take the wire that is connected to the positive post on the battery. Clip the alligator clip from that wire onto the gold plated scrap from your electronics. You may only be able to do small amounts at a time, but you can keep everything running in a continuous cycle for as long as the battery still has power. Once the alligator clip is connected to the electronics scrap, drop the scrap into your beaker of electrolyte solution.

    * 7

    Prepare the cathode. The remaining wire is attached to the negative terminal on the battery. Attach the alligator clip from this wire onto a piece of stainless steel. It will be easier to work with if the steel is in a cylinder shaped rod, shaped like a pencil, but any piece of stainless steel will work fine. Once the steel has been attached to the alligator clip, lower it into the solution. Your electric circuit is not active.

    * 8

    Wait it out. The battery will be charging your electronics scrap with a positive charge and the stainless steel with a negative charge. The electrolyte solution you made will dissolve the gold from the scrap, and the positive charge in the gold will cause it to attract to the negatively charged steel. All of the gold in the electronics scrap will form onto the steel, where it can be peeled off and set aside until you have enough to refine.

    * 9

    Mix a refining solution. Although you have recovered the gold from the electronics scrap, it may not be pure gold. It may be 12k or 18k gold, so now we will refine it to be pure 24k fine gold. Take a second beaker and pour it half full of Aqua Regina. Be very careful. Aqua Regina will burn through human tissue, so wear thick rubber gloves and take proper safety precautions.

    * 10

    Refine the gold. Drop the gold into the Aqua Regina, then fill the beaker the rest of the way with sodium meta bisulphite. This solution will eat away any copper or other metals that may have been smelted into the gold when it was manufactured. The remaining gold substance will collect in the bottom of the beaker and will be pure 24k gold.

    * 11

    Recover the pure gold. Drain your refining solution into a glass storage container for future use. Allow any remaining chemicals to evaporate off of the gold, then wash the gold thoroughly with water. Now you have successfully refined gold from electronics scrap.
     
  4. Gator 45/70

    Gator 45/70 Monkey+++

    So...You've followed all these step's and have recovered metal's ..??
     
  5. hamba

    hamba Monkey+

    sorry not yet but i intend to attempt it in the following few months ill update the thread if it works or not
     
  6. Gator 45/70

    Gator 45/70 Monkey+++

    Perhap's if one was in the scrape electronic's business...This may work out in their favor...However the overhead for the average joe blow to extract metal's would not be worth it due to cost of the set-up.. Interesting process though..
     
  7. hamba

    hamba Monkey+

    eh suppose so still interesting to know and may have some use as a hobby than an occupation
     
  8. TnAndy

    TnAndy Senior Member Founding Member

    "A while ago i learned that in every tone of scrape electronics there is at least 17 kg of gold 1 kg of platinum"

    I think your figures are WAY off.....WAY WAY WAY off.....probably by a factor of a 1000 or more....almost in the pure bullchit range...ahahahaaaaa. I'd go back to the source of this information, and tell them they are full of crap.

    One of the most valuable courses I ever took in college was in using the "new" scientific calculators that were replacing slide rules at the time. I clearly remember the instructor standing up there saying "NEVER EVER TRUST THE FIGURES THAT COME OUT OF A CALCULATOR IF YOU DON'T ALREADY HAVE A REASONABLE IDEA OF WHAT THE ANSWER SHOULD BE...the difference between a GOOD engineer, and most of the others, is the ability to recognize a mistake early on....".

    That one tiny piece of advice was almost worth the price of a degree......and you just got it for free.

    So THINK a minute, bud.....a relatively RICH gold strike is measured in a few grams/ton....like 5-10 grams/ton.....basically a fraction of an ounce per ton of rock.

    And you're talking 17 KILOGRAMS per ton ??

    At 32 troy ounces per kg, that is 544 troy pounds per ton.....you're saying over 1/4 of electronic scrap is pure gold ???

    You really believe that ??

    IF electronics had THAT MUCH gold on them, you could take a pocket knife and scrap it off.....you wouldn't have to bother with acids to melt away the other stuff.....not to mention the average PC would probably cost 50,000 bucks instead of 500.

    Also, working with a couple of the chemicals you list ( assuming you could even get your hands ON them ) is a great way to end up graveyard dead, and your workplace more contaminated than the average meth cooking lab.

    One of the problems with the internet is there is SO much BS floating around, you almost need a set of hip waders to surf.
     
  9. ghrit

    ghrit Ambulatory anachronism Administrator Founding Member

    In India, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka (at least) there are cottage industries that do exactly that, recover gold and other precious metals from scrapped electronics. Very dangerous business.

    Anyway, containers full of the scrapped items go there, brokers farm it all out to small businesses that break it up, and do the recovery. I don't think all the small businesses survive too long ---
     
  10. casey

    casey Monkey+

    *******************************************************
    (Requote:)
    "And you're talking 17 KILOGRAMS per ton ?? At 32 troy ounces per kg, that is 544 troy pounds per ton.....you're saying over 1/4 of electronic scrap is pure gold ??? You really believe that ??"
    ********************************************************

    Ah, I believe that you mixed up the units... don't you mean there are 522 ounces per ton and not pounds?

    And to quote you, "That one tiny piece of advice was almost worth the price of a degree......and you just got it for free."

    [stirpot]
     
  11. Seacowboys

    Seacowboys Senior Member Founding Member

    17 Grams per ton is more in line with the older electronics. I looked into this several year ago when I had an opportunity to buy several hundred tons of old computers.
     
    WestPointMAG likes this.
  12. BTPost

    BTPost Old Fart Snow Monkey Moderator

    Just another NOTE, here: Have you considered the costs, related to the chemicals REQUIRED, to extract the PMs from old computers, and electronic hardware, and the recycling costs, for those chemicals here in the USA? Also the EPA, and OSHA, Regulations on doing this, here in the USA. There IS a very BIG reason, that we ship all our old computers, and electronics, to China, to have them recycled. They do NOT have these regulations in their country and that makes it just a barely marginal operation there, and highly toxic, to boot. 60 Minutes did an exposé on this, a few months back, It wasn't pretty..... YMMV...
     
    Brokor likes this.
  13. Disciple

    Disciple Monkey+

    I tried the computer scraping business before and yes there is money in to be had but you are never going to scrap enough. the gold on the boards is about like gold foil. You would have to scrap 1000 computers just to get an ounce at least. the Platinum is the same way its like a foil that is laid on the hard drives disks as the thing that actually stores your info. once again, way to much work. the only way you ever make anything is to get mass amounts of computers either given to you or you go buy out 20 to 30 school dictricts computers and have them shipped to you the only metal you cane make some money on is copper, but it takes a whole lot of tear downs to get enough to make any money. when I did it the cases were still heavy metal cases now they are aluminum, very little money plus i had to go buy my computers from a volume dealer. 125 bucks for a pallet load. you get maybe 30 computers for a pallet you basically break even if your lucky. It is not a profitable business at all.
     
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