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Have acquired a solution containing gold

(-----) 2006

Would it be at all practical to remove the gold in an electroplating system.

Winfred Morgan
electronic repair - Decatur, Texas

First of two simultaneous responses -- 2006

If by practical you mean profitable it depends on the gold content. Mines are dug and abandoned according to this variable.

Guillermo Marrufo
Monterrey, NL, Mexico

Second of two simultaneous responses -- 2006

Hi Winfred,
It would depend on the volume you have and the gold metal concentration in the solution. If you have one or two gallons, it would probably not be practical. There are a few ways to recover the gold, but without hazardous chemical or plating experience I would advise against it. A reputable precious metals refiner may do it for you. If you choose one make sure they are using a licensed and properly permitted hazardous waste hauler (for transport). It also pays to know exactly how much gold you have before sending the solution out. Good Luck!

Mark Baker
process engineer - Malone, New York


In the old days, it would be shipped as a haz material, and not a haz waste since it was being "recycled". Makes a difference who can haul it and the cost of hauling.

James Watts
- Navarre, Florida


I used the term "hazardous waste hauler" because after the gold is dropped out of solution, the processor is left with a waste solution that must be treated in the proper manner. You don't want some yo-yo recovering the gold and dumping the remainder of the solution into a sewer drain. Cradle to grave is taken very seriously these days.

Mark Baker
Process Engineer - Syracuse, New York


My assumption is that a sane person would use a well known reputable company who's sole business was reclamation of spent plating solutions. shipping it as a haz waste requires that it goes to a certified waste treatment facility, which few if any reclaimers are.

James Watts
- Navarre, Florida


I don't want to argue with you Jim. The man that posted the question was in electronic repair and had acquired a gold solution. I was just warning him of things that he could be liable for. I have serviced 80-90 refining accounts in the past and never had a problem with customers using a haz waste trucker shipping to the refiner. The refiners I dealt with had to treat the spent solutions and had certified waste treatment operators on staff. Maybe regulations have changed in the last 7 years, so I could be wrong about present day procedures.

Mark Baker
Process Engineer - Syracuse, New York

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