Friday, January 21, 2022

You may not realize it, but there might be items in your home collecting dust, when instead, you could be collecting cash for them.

Sam Fried of Specialty Metals, Smelters and Refiners, LLC in Fairfield, Connecticut wants to pay you top dollar for precious scrap metal including your gold, silver, platinum, palladium and rhodium.

So how does the process work? When you arrive at Specialty Metals, the first thing Sam will do is weigh the items you brought right in front of you. The unit of measurement used to weigh precious metals is called troy ounces and precious metals are priced by their weight in troy ounces. Troy ounces are used to ensure consistency. One troy ounce weighs approximately 31.103 grams, whereas a traditional ounce weighs 28.35 grams.

After the precious metal is weighed, Specialty Metals will then calculate the correct price of the metal. For instance, if you brought in a gold item, Sam would give you the price of the gold per carat and pay you 98% of the gold’s value.

Gold is usually marked, or stamped, from best to least quality, with the following designations: 24K, 22K, 18K, 14K or 10K. The karat quality is typically marked on the clasps or pennants of jewelry. On rings, the stamping is usually found on the inside of the band. If the item you brought in is unmarked or you are unsure of the quality, then Specialty Metals can test it for you.

Sterling silver is another popular precious metal that Specialty Metals likes to purchase. If you are not sure if an item is sterling, there are a couple of different ways to check. Sometimes the word “sterling” is stamped or engraved in fine print somewhere on the item. Other times, the numbers “925” might be found on the item, indicating that it is made up of 92.5% silver, thus making it bona fide sterling silver. Specialty Metals, however, does not accept silver-plated items.

The turnaround time for turning precious scrap into cash usually takes about 5-7 days, but can take up to two weeks.

Specialty Metals is also interested in your coins, sports memorabilia and other kinds of collectibles. Got a watch you want to sell? Specialty Metals offers a premium over scrap, especially for designer pieces including Cartier and Tiffany & Co. If you don’t have authentication, Sam will be happy to look into it.

While Sam Fried currently makes his home in Teaneck, he originally hails from Fairfield, Connecticut, where his father, Dan, first began smelting and refining metals 40 years ago. Dan used to trade watches and oftentimes the watches he received needed new batteries. He would replace those watch batteries, and in the process, amassed a large quantity of them. Rather than just throwing away all those dead batteries, he filled up a big bucket with them, knowing that they were anything but worthless. Watch batteries are made up of between 1%-2% gold. Dan would visit other watch stores, asking their owners to buy their stores of dead batteries, and they were all too happy to oblige and unload them for a little extra cash. Once Dan collected a substantial supply of batteries, he extracted the precious metals, smelted them and ultimately turned that gold into Specialty Metals.

For more information or to find out if your items are worth selling, email Sam at [email protected] or call him at 203-253-3635.

By Ronit Mershon

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