electronic scrap

This topic contains 4 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by  Anonymous 11 months, 3 weeks ago.

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  • #2775


    electronic scrap is something that i need some help with like the best way to remove the diodes or whatamacallits from the boards? I know that the green boards are the ones most desirable but where is the best place to send them to? where do you get the most bang for your buck?

    • This topic was modified 1 year, 3 months ago by  CynNUbu.
  • #2777

    Lisa Oliver Yates

    Boardsort.com and utube

  • #2863



    You have asked a very interesting question! Escrap is actually the only scrap I generate anymore. Let me explain.

    A few of years back after retirement I came to the realization that i needed to generate some extra income because SSA was just not cutting it. Primarily, I buy computers and accessories at government auctions. Some of the computers I will refurbish and then resell online. People will buy the older computers and ship them to their relatives in third world countries for a fraction of the cost. Some of the computers will be broken and not worth investing any money in. Some I will pull and resell the parts (power supply’s, motherboards and some PCI/PCIE add on cards). What I don’t sell I will break down and recycle for the various metals they contain.

    Computers and the various electronic components they are made of have a lot of precious metals! For instance:

    *CPU’s and the sockets they fit in contain gold (the older the computer, the more gold they contain)
    *Data cables and the sockets/ports they fit in all have gold pins (USB, IDE, VGA, DVI, HDMI, SATA eSATA, FireWire, etc). if the cable is used to carry data, then it will have gold pins and the sockets or ports it connects too will also have gold (gold does not corrode like other metals, so where data transfer is concerned, gold is used). If the cable is used for Power (either AC or DC) it will NOT have any gold
    *Motherboards have a lot of different precious metals. Again, any of the data slots, ports, sockets have gold pins. Some will have SMA Tantalum Capacitors. Tantalum is a rare, precious metal and these capacitors will bring a scrap price between $28.00 to $80.00 per pound (depends on what type of tantalum capacitors you have). Almost all MB’s will have MLC capacitors contain palladium and silver, both precious metals. The IC Chips on the MB contain gold wires in them and the list goes on!
    *Most DVD an CD drives will have gold diodes in them, not too mention the gold in the IC chips that their boards are made of. Most will also have photodiodes which converts light to electricity. Photodiodes contain gold, silver and germanium. Some have Laser Diodes which contain gold
    *Most Microwaves will have Gunn Diodes which contain gold and germanium.
    *Light Emitting Diodes (LED’s) all contain a gold bonding wire
    *TRIAC’s are a three terminal, solid state, semiconductor device for controlling current. TRIAC’s contain gallium and indium, both of which are precious/valuable metals
    *Leaded Disc Ceramic Capacitors, you know, the the round (sometimes light blue in color), ceramic coated thing that connects the the PCB via two legs soldered to the board. These capacitors will have two silver discs (one on each side) that the legs connect to.
    *Bipolar Junction Transistors (have 3 legs) can contain gold and germanium.
    *Resistors (depending on the type AND THERE ARE MANY DIFFERENT TYPES!) can contain gold, platinum and tantalum.
    *Network Resistors & Array Resistors can contain Iridium, Silver, Platinum, Palladium and/or Rhenium
    *Potentiometers (aka POT’s) are three-terminal resistors with a sliding or rotating contact that forms an adjustable voltage divider. The higher end (more expensive) POT’s can contain gold and platinum

    These are just a few OF THE MANY electrical components used in our electronic gadgets we can not live with out that have precious and/or rare/valuable metals used in their construction. There are actually hundreds of different electronic components that will have precious, rare or valuable meatals used in their construction.

    When it comes to PCB’s (printed circuit boards) or any motherboard I always depopulate them (completely remove all of the components from the board), sort and process the components for the valuable materials they are made of. Once the PCB is depopulated I will sell them to a scrap yard who then recovers the copper used in their construction

    • #3027


      I am not familiar with all the terms used in your post. Would it be possible for you to post or send to me any pictures with descriptions of the items list in your post? I am interested in sorting capacitors and resistors.

  • #3028



    A few weeks ago I started a series of posts entitled “Where’s The Gold?”. The purpose and intention was/is to help those who are new to e-scrap maneuver through the many different electronic components that they will come across when working with e-scrap.

    Each week I take a different electronic component and briefly outline what precious metals (if any) they may contain and also give a list of where the different components might be used or found.

    The first article was “Where’s The Gold- Part 1” and it covered Diodes, Rectifiers, SCR’s, TRIAC’s. Here’s the link for that thread:

    Where's The Gold?? Part 1

    The next week was titled “Where’s The Gold- Part 2 and it covered capacitors. Starting with that article I also included a .pdf attachment for download which gives more detailed information on capacitors and also includes pictures. Here’s the link for that thread:

    Where's The Gold? Part 2 – Capacitors

    This morning I posted the article for “Where’s The Gold – Part 3 – Transistors, Resistors, Potentiometers, Rheostats”. It has two .pdf attachments for downloading that give more detailed information and also included pictures. Here’s that link:

    Where's The Gold? Part 3 – Transistors, Resistors, Potentiometers, Rheostats

    Next week I will post “Where’s The Gold? – Part 4 – Resistance Temperature Detectors”

    If you go check out those threads (make sure you download the attachments), I think all of the questions you just asked will be answered.

    If you still have any questions or I can be of assistance in any way just let me know and I will do what I can to help

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