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Methods of Recycling Your Stuff

lyonadmiral

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Joined
Jun 3, 2009
Messages
2,377
Location
Peru, New York
I'm curious to hear how people recycle their stuff; the retro/vintage stuff they can't find good homes for, but yet can't keep anymore.

Do you just box it in big piles and bring it to Best Buy or your local recycle, what do you do?

I keep several junk chassis with covers around, and I will fill up the chassis with drives (internal & external) and fill up the expansion slots with cards until the machine is just jam packed and then bring it to a local recycler.

-Daniel
 

Unknown_K

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Joined
Sep 11, 2003
Messages
8,507
Location
Ohio/USA
For junk cases I just put them on the curb (same with broken monitors), local scrappers come and pick them up.

For dead motherboards I rip off anything useful and let them sit around until I get enough to bother selling them for $3 a lb or so.

Anything that works but I don't want it ends up getting traded, sold, or given away via freecycle.

Pretty much 99% of everything I get I want and will fix it if needed, very little gets junked or sold.
 

Compgeke

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Sep 30, 2011
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Fairfield, CA, USA
I only really have random Pentium 4 era crap, so I just wait until I have enough to take a trip down to the dump, the closest place that buys anything is 60 miles out, not worth it in gas.
 

DOS lives on!!

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Joined
Mar 14, 2011
Messages
2,303
Location
East Tennessee
Hmmm, good working, but it must go. I don't (should change this) get rid of stuff often, but in most cases, people will buy it. Our local computer repair shop has a few trays of vintage computer parts. I keep those bins from becoming empty and also it gives a relief that you can finally have a way of gettingrid of stuff.

Other than that, try Freecycle?
 

Unknown_K

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Joined
Sep 11, 2003
Messages
8,507
Location
Ohio/USA
I only really have random Pentium 4 era crap, so I just wait until I have enough to take a trip down to the dump, the closest place that buys anything is 60 miles out, not worth it in gas.
There are people who will pay you for motherboards and CPUs plus pay for shipping if you have a decent amount.
 

Compgeke

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Joined
Sep 30, 2011
Messages
780
Location
Fairfield, CA, USA
The stuff I ewaste is dead stuff, like leaky caps, nothing working. Anything working I just put on Freecycle, far easier to get rid of.
 

sirwiggum

Experienced Member
Joined
Aug 12, 2011
Messages
68
Anything of value or working tends to go on ebay.

Ebay buyers can be picky though, I've had stuff on that even for a penny doesn't sell.

Freecycle - too many timewasters who say they'll pickup then never do.

If it is broken it goes to the local recycle centre who have a section for computers / crts / electricals.
 

k2x4b524[

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Joined
Jun 13, 2009
Messages
1,515
Location
Tacoma, Washington, USA. Zip code 98404
If it works i keep it until i need it, unless it's a part so generic they are a dime a dozen *Serial IO boards*
If it's a whole computer, that i don't need, i post it on craigslist for 2 weeks, if no sell, i pull the cpu, ram, hdd, jumpers, drives, all that, and add it to the scrap pile.
If it's a power supply, i separate all the good stuff out, then garbage the wire insulation, keep the caps, heatsinks, then scrap the board, and wire after i've stripped it.
If it's an old dead drive or board, i pull the ram, terminating resistors, all that stuff, THEN scrap the cannibalized board.

I'd rather make a little, then have something that doesn't work lay around collecting dust, when i know i can't fix it.

If it works completely, i see if i can sell it, to someone who can use it, or donate it to low incomes, churches, that sort.
 

BGoins12

Experienced Member
Joined
Oct 12, 2011
Messages
249
Location
Amherst, Ohio
Mine's pretty simple... if it works and I need it... it stays. If not, it ends on forums for sale or eBay.

If it doesn't work or is just broken in general, it's smashed up and dropped off at the local recycling center. I rarely ever trash anything as I don't want scrappers taking it as most of them around here scrap for drug and/or alcohol addictions.
 

sirwiggum

Experienced Member
Joined
Aug 12, 2011
Messages
68
Surely picking through waste for scrap is less harmful to society than robbing / mugging to get drug / beer money?
 

patscc

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Joined
Apr 13, 2005
Messages
2,311
Location
Stevens Point, Wisconsin
Less harmful, surely, but don't forget, here in the U.S. we're obligated to maintain a certain level of crime to keep our high standing in the eyes of the world.
patscc
 

barythrin

Veteran Member
Joined
Oct 5, 2005
Messages
6,256
Location
Texas
^-- lol . Does anyone here or has anyone here have an opinion on taking a heat gun to parts to get all the solder off and quicker get parts of a board? Is that likely to damage stuff or is it just not worth the effort?
 

patscc

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Joined
Apr 13, 2005
Messages
2,311
Location
Stevens Point, Wisconsin
I've never had luck with the heat gun, it always seems to start the epoxy PCB charring. If you don't care about the mess, keep a compressor with a small nozzle handy, heat the part's solder pad, zap it with compressed air, solder everywhere but on the pad. Of course, if you're not just parting out, but want to re-use, or fix the board, well....
SMD rework stations work okay on SMD if you've got just the right nozzle, but I haven't had much luck with through-hole parts.
What I really want to do is get hold of a pizza oven ( the ones they sell at Kmart, etc. ), add some control circuitry, and see if I can't bake the parts off/out without damaging them. Sort of a reverse wave-solder machine, if you follow.
As usual, the minute I need one, everyone around here either doesn't have any, or only has pricey ones (i.e. > $10)
patscc
 

glitch

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Joined
Feb 1, 2010
Messages
4,964
Location
Central VA
Does anyone here or has anyone here have an opinion on taking a heat gun to parts to get all the solder off and quicker get parts of a board? Is that likely to damage stuff or is it just not worth the effort?

I use the heat gun for smallish parts, and if I'm only taking one or two off. Up to about 24 pin ICs is the biggest I'll do with the heat gun. Bigger than that, or if I'm doing a whole largeish board, I get out the propane plumbing torch. Do it outside when you're starting out, as you /will/ set the board substrate on fire a few times. I've been doing it for probably 10-15 years, and can now desolder an entire motherboard-sized board stuffed with through-hole components without burning the board. I've even reworked bad caps on multilayer (modern) motherboards with the torch!

You do sometimes fry parts...large relays are bad to have contacts pull out of the plastic. Probably 95% of what I remove ends up being fine though.

As to recycling stuff...I sell/trade/give to friends the really good and decent stuff I no longer need or want. The OK and less useful stuff (legacy P2-P4 PCs, printers, et c.) I've been taking to the MIT Flea, which is a once-a-month April - October hamfest/electronics flea market. I don't make a lot, but it gets it out of the house, gets it to other hackers/hobbyists, and does make more than scrap. If the stuff is utter crap (boards I've torched parts from!) I give it to a neighbor who scraps for a business.
 
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