The following article has a section on silver recovery:
I've used the Porter's silver recovery unit. If the supplied test strips are any indication of silver content it appears to work. The strip indicates silver to start and none or much less after a couple days of using the unit. So it's doing something.
Originally Posted by David A. Goldfarb
i think it is probably not feasible for a "little guy" to collect and try to
sell the silver sludge, but maybe people could "pool" their sludge locally
and have a larger amount. there may be listings under
refiners, electrolplaters &C in your local phone book, maybe they
would give you a better idea of what the minimum amount that would be
accepted would be ..
sorry i couldn't be of more help
OK, Silver Wizards, here's a funny wrinkle on this discussion Just imagine for a moment that you run a high school darkroom and at least once or twice a year a kid gets confused and dumps his (or her) tankful of fixer into the main Hypo Clear tank (or Perma Wash, in my case). Is this now-contaminated hypo clear/perma wash safe to run through my trusty old electrolytic X-Rite silver recovery unit?
My inclination is to add it to a batch of old fix and run it through rather than dump it down the drain.
Thanks in advance!
Check to see if the concentration is below what the X-rite requires for operation. I seriously doubt there is anything in Perma-Wash that would cause problems.
Your idea of adding another used batch of fixer is a good one.
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Silver costs less than $18/tr.oz on the metal markets. You'd have to process an awful lot of film in order to get $1000 worth out. Sticking wire wool in seems to be pretty effective at detoxifying fix, even if you do only end up with worthless sludge. Whilst it seems a shame to throw silver in the bin, it's actually not that expensive (compare this with Gold which costs over $1k/tr.oz) and requires pretty much industrial-scale recovery to be economically viable.
I sell silver regularly, those are called ion exchange devices and nobody will pay for them, in fact you have to pay to get rid of them. The only way to get silver you can sell is by something called electrolytic silver recovery. It's a device that charges a plate and the silver will stick to it allowing you to chip it off when it's full. They are not cheap and for most people who develop at home would take a lifetime to recoup the investment.
you might want to check out the silver magnet.
you send the electrode covered with silver back to the manufacturer in the bag they provide and they will give you money for your silver.
the devices do not cost very much, they work very well, and pretty much pay for themselves.
there are no minimum levels of silver you need to have on the electrode ( you can send it back with 1/2 troy oz or 30 troy oz )
there are no minimums or fees involved ( except for a few percent of the total for overhead ) ...
if you want to get the silver out of your waste stream this might work for you.
Silver magnet is just a small electrolytic device like I described. Will work with low volume like a home darkroom. Unfortunately with the volume of fixer I use at my day job we would have the dec here looking very mean!
the dec ? whats that
Originally Posted by rtuttle