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Professional recycling. one man's junk is, you know

Posted: Sun Mar 31, 2019 7:49 am
by Oilpan4
One of my hobbies that kind of became an obsession is buying junk from the scrap yard and dumping it at the local agg auction.
The first time I went to the local agg auction last year to check it out the first thing I noticed is people will buy anything about the same time I realized these people are buying stuff that I see go into the crusher at the local scrap yard. I have been a regular at the scrap yard since 2011 so I know what kind of stuff shows up there.

Last auction I was sweating bullets as an experiment I went big. Dropped about $370 at the scrap yard, only kept about $200 worth of unistrut, rigid and emt conduit had I paid retail for it at lowes to do my solar install.
So I only needed to clear $300 to make it worth my time.
Before I had only bought little junk at the scrap yard and dumped it off at the auction.
All the junk I dumped off, used chain link fence, new but dirty 10 foot emt conduit, a rusty goat or calf feeder trough made from cut in half 55gal drums on legs, small hay feeder made mostly from rebar, a stainless steel fuel tank about 37 gallons, an aluminum fuel tank at least 70 gallons, large hydraulic cylinders that came off a junked loader that appeared to still be servicable, some antenna tower stuff, half inch rebar, used T posts, rolls of used barbed wire, some full 20lb exchange propane tanks (I took rusty obsolete tanks that I got at the scrap yard, exchanged them at walmart for $16) and some other junk.
Then when I went to pick up my check I said to the lady at the counter "there must be some kind of mix-up" she said "were you lot 99"? I was like yeah, and she said "she said were these your items" and my eyes just about popped out of my head when I saw what some of the stuff sold for compared to what i paid for it and what my turn around expectations were.
I need to take this seriously since I like recycling but I love making money.
I was able to use my leaf and trailer for everything this time so transportation costs were essentially 0. But if I need to I will scout with my leaf pulling the 4x8 trailer, buy up the little stuff and come back with my diesel suburban and the big trailer for the big stuff.
Last time I bought the chain link as a gamble, there was a lot more there that I didn't buy. Yeah I should have bought it, I would have needed my 18' x 99'' deck trailer to get it all in 1 or 2 trips.

So if you happen to have a scrap yard and place that does agricultural auctions near by maybe check it out, make some money and save a little piece of the planet at the same time.

Re: Professional recycling. one man's junk is, you know

Posted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 10:36 am
by Oilpan4
I did it again.
But this time it was raining/snowing the morning of the auction, not many people showed up and I wasn't there to run up the bid because I had to work. (Same as last time)
Still made pretty good money, but not like last time. This was the worst case scenario.
I am going to change my routine.
I will take all the junk home, load it on my 26'x99" flat bed trailer behind my diesel suburban (aka the leaf range extender) and drive it 2 miles to the auction place a day or 2 before the auction once I know the weather is going to be good or incase the weather turns leave it on my trailer till next month and hopefully I don't have to on and off load items multiple times.
All this rain and snow junk was supposed to come the day after the auction.

Re: Professional recycling. one man's junk is, you know

Posted: Mon May 20, 2019 11:25 am
by Oilpan4
This time did a little value added experiment.
Netted about 100% profit.
I picked up obsolete 20lb propane tanks at scrap value, about $3 each, took them to walmart exchanged them for $16 full tanks.
Sold them for $39 each after auction fees.

Normally I'm running 30% to 70% profit margins on junk.