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  • Refining PCB powder Help Please

    Hi apologies if this came up twice, as i posted it yesterday but it doesnt seem to have saved.

    I have been collecting pcb for a while as a hobby and crushing them down into a powder. I have been doing this for a few years and have pretty much filled a drum of pcb powder. Now i am at a loss as to what do do with the powder. I am not really interested in getting involved with using any chemicals or anything like that. Ideally i would like to find someone to buy the material for refining. Can anybody help point me in the direction for this or what to do with my powder.

    Thanks

  • #2
    Maybe invest in a shaker table?
    https://youtu.be/TBc5XaBPx_0

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    • #3
      Thanks for your advice - but im not really talking about seperating the material - i have been running it through a old ball mill for a while and have it down to pretty much a complete powder. I just dont know what to do with it. If im not mistaken a shaker table helps push off the waste and keep the good stuff. But still, where can i sell the good stuff. Thanks again for your help

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      • #4
        What made you do it in the first place? Did you see a process from powder form?
        Sounds like it will be too complicated to sell, maybe the only option is to find a toll refiner that would process it but a drum full probably isn't enough to be dealing with a large volume refiner, possibly needing to ship it overseas.

        Problem is, circuit boards come in all forms, from high grade telecom down to low value power boards processed for base metals.
        Who's to say what the powder is made up of and do refiners go that far? Usually it's shipped as a shredded product in 5-15mm chunks.

        The best method is to just sell the boards complete, or depopulate the boards of the good bits, mostly the IC chips and sell them as is, since we can value them that way.
        As powder, where does one start? I'm not sure of what process would be used unless it was blown through an edy separator to pull the metal out of the plastic & fibreglass.

        I can ask for you in a week or so when I go to my buyer and see what he can come up with, maybe e can do something with it.
        Buying eWaste link here

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        • #5
          Thanks Ben, That would be really appreciated. Well originally i was only interested in the Gold so i figured as a powder i could build up a fair amount and then just refine out the gold. That was years ago though, i wasnt really thinking about all the other precious metals that would also be in there and would be going to waste. i am still surprised its so difficult to seperate, so i was thinking it would probably be best to sell it on to someone with the skills to process it properly. i just hope i havnt ruined it, but i guess i could always just go after the gold.

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          • #6
            Yeah it's a little too complicated as powder, because they don't know what it is it would need to be assayed first,
            Like a 1kg bag that needs to be sent overseas.
            But the problem is there's not enough product to make it worth their while, unless they were going to get a regular supply in say 500kg bulker bag batches, they wouldn't want to deal with it.

            The only stuff they buy that's shredded is low grade boards for copper recovery, everything else needs to be as is, as complete boards for them to pay it's value.
            Your best to try for the gold alone but i'd say there would be a lot of copper there too, any other precious metals are not worth recovering unless an assay sample showed a large proportion of it, like palladium, but that's probably unlikely if you've mixed in a lot of low/mid grade boards.
            Buying eWaste link here

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