Non-Precious Metals

Mark

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Maybe this isn't the right place to post this so I apologize. I was speaking with a Precious Metals broker this past weekend and he brought up the subject of copper and a future demand for it. He told us the amount of pure copper in a .01 penny and indicated that you'd want to "hoard" pennies from 1982 and back. He said it's just something he and his grand kids do and they have a blast going through rolls of pennies. Well, my question is this: What about some of the other metals such as copper and nickle (or even zinc, etc...) Would it be worth it to do something like that? I'd appreciate some opinions. Seems like it might be fruitful to keep your old pennies and nickles.
What say you guys?
 

ancona

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We recycle all sorts of non-precious metals including, copper, aluminum, zinc and stainless steel. At one point, I could get 1.85 for a pound of stainless. That has dropped considerably since those days, but it is still well worth recycling. Copper as well.
 

ADK

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It seems to me that copper is still pretty widely available --- building materials, etc., and that the price would stay low --- of the same token, I suppose it will go up over the years. However, copper isn't gold or silver, which are recognized as money. Of course, gold is the primary metal.

I haven't done the research, so I'm talking out of line. But, I would imagine that you wouldn't make much profit from copper as you would gold or silver.

If I was searching rolls, I'd be looking for silver :)

ADK
 

GoldcoDirect

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Copper has been becoming more valuable as of late.

So valuable (relatively speaking) in fact, that thief's have been raiding construction sites stealing the electrical cables, and reselling them for a large profit.

While you definitely aren't going to make as much as Gold or Silver, if you happened upon a large amount of copper for free, you could make a few bucks out of it.

Having said that, would I spend my time collecting it? Probably not.

But its a good way to get kids interested in the idea of investing and saving for their future.
 

Mark

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Well I collect silver. I was just wondering if would be worth it to get a little copper here and there instead of buying Slim Jims.
 

benjamen

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Well I collect silver. I was just wondering if would be worth it to get a little copper here and there instead of buying Slim Jims.
It wouldn't hurt to keep pre-82 pennies and just about any nickles, but I wouldn't go out of my way to do so. While they are worth more in melt value than face, you would need a lot of storage if you really got into it.
 

ADK

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One of my many side hustles (http://artofmanliness.com/2012/08/15/be-your-own-boss-37-side-hustle-ideas/) is to collect scrap metal when the opportunity presents itself and sell that to the local scrap yard, then re-invest that money in gold and silver.

I don't do it all the time, but when it presents itself I'm certainly savvy enough to take advantage of it. For instance, a friend was cleaning out his father's printing shop --- there were old scrap machines and nearly 600 pounds of aluminum litho plates and over 1,000 pounds of printer's lead. No one wanted to move the stuff or deal with getting rid of it --- I offered to clean it all up, do all the labor, then split the cash from the scrap yard.

I sold the scrap metal locally, then e-bayed the linotype. Grossed over $3k for a days work, split 60/40. I kept 60. I was happy, they were happy, etc.

When I complete projects at home I always keep and separate the scrap. (I weld, which generates a lot of scrap... lol) Household stuff... wires, pipes, etc. Man, it adds up.

ADK
 

DoChenRollingBearing

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@ ADK, I bet it does add up when you can find a nice pile of metal that the owners cannot assign a value to.

@ Mark, I keep ALL nickels and inspect my change each day for the 1981 and before pennies (copper). I have about 1 and 1/4 liters (Aquafina bottles) of Cu pennies and about 1 and 1/2 GALLONS of nickels.

Metal value of US coins can be found each day at: coinflation.com
 

pmbug

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... While they are worth more in melt value than face, you would need a lot of storage if you really got into it.
:agree:

I used to have a collection of pennies. Volume wise, it was about 2-3 shoe boxes full of rolled coins (but you couldn't carry it in shoe boxes because they weren't strong enough to hold the weight). I traded it in for silver a few years ago. I've been very happy with that decision.
 

DCFusor

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I'm a fan of copper, not the penny alloy. Ratio wise, I've not done so poorly - remember there was a time it was too cheap to be worth stealing. So when I built this place, I bought a few hundred extra pounds of flashing (at $1.25/lb), plenty of extra pipe, and fat (#2 and on down to 000 gage) wire. That and stainless steel, and various other things scrounged here and there make up most of my "junkyard" for the machine shop.

Considering my basis cost on the copper is around $1/lb (a lot was scrounged free)...I think I've done OK on that stack.

Go check the current price of linotype and weep, ADK - it's about the best stuff out there for casting your own bullets....
http://www.rotometals.com/Bullet-Casting-Alloys-s/5.htm
That's about the cheapest outfit out there for things like this.
 

DoChenRollingBearing

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I should have mentioned this before, but just the very ACT of saving my Cu pennies as well as my nickels is that it helps give me a psychological component to help me spend less...

It is very true that to have substantial amounts of money (value) saved up in copper that you need a lot of space. But, just having some base metal socked away reminds me that the metal value IS worth more than the face value. And that having at least a tiny bit of stinginess somewhere helps me resist useless spending.
 

ADK

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@ ADK, I bet it does add up when you can find a nice pile of metal that the owners cannot assign a value to.
My friend was actually just putting off the work of loading all of the aluminum plates into their truck (this was a basement print shop) and hauling them to the local transfer station to throw them into the metal bin.

I told him that I could do one better for him. It worked out :)

ADK
 

silvercoinrn

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Lots of people collect copper. a pre 1982 penny is worth about 2.5 cents in copper weight. I have heard of people also collecting nickles because they are worth more for the metal content than the face value of it.
 
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