Green Gold: The Economic Opportunities in Selling Scrap Metal as a Side Hustle

In a world where sustainability meets economic savvy, the concept of turning rubbish into cash is gaining momentum. One avenue that stands out is selling scrap metal. Beyond simply decluttering your home or workplace, selling scrap metal presents a unique side hustle opportunity that can add some extra value to your hip pocket. This practice also aligns with environmental responsibility, which is an increasingly important concern for many people, businesses, and industries. This month, we explore the economic opportunities embedded in the world of scrap metal and uncover the strategies for and reasons to sell scrap metal. Keep reading to discover how you can turn your scrap metal into a sustainable and lucrative side hustle.

scrap metal

The Foundation: Understanding the Value of Scrap Metal

If you want to understand why selling scrap metal is a great side hustle, you first have to understand the value of scrap metal. There are several factors that come into play when assessing the scrap metal. First, the condition of the metal influences its value, and clean and uncontaminated metal will be worth more. Secondly, the purity of the metal also plays a pivotal role. Ferrous metals are metals which contain iron, and non-ferrous metals such as aluminium, copper, and brass, are often more valuable. Lastly, the quantity of the scrap you have also impacts its market value. Larger volumes usually translate to better returns.

In order to navigate this landscape effectively, aspiring scrap metal entrepreneurs should stay informed about metal market trends. In addition, you can consider forming relationships with local scrapyards and expert metal recycling centres, to help with your scrap metal journey. In essence, understanding the value of scrap metal is about more than simply metal; it’s about unlocking the potential embedded in what others might perceive as discardable or useless.

The Art of Collecting Scrap Metal

The potential sources for scrap metal are diverse, and often hiding in plain sight. You can start with your immediate surroundings – sheds or garages, for example, can hold many forgotten treasures, from old appliances to disused electronics. Op-shops or garage sales also offer rich hunting grounds, as do hard rubbish piles, where you can turn someone’s rubbish into your treasure. In addition, consider engaging with local businesses, especially those with plenty of metal by-products, can be an effective way to gather scrap metal.

Knowing Your Metal: Sorting and Maximising Returns

When you efficiently sort scrap metal, you can help to maximise your returns. This is a nuanced process that involves distinguishing between different metals, each with its own market value. When you understand classifications like ferrous and non-ferrous metals, and in addition, the purity of metals, you will potentially be able to command higher prices.

Plus, establishing a systematic sorting method streamlines the recycling process – you should separate metals based on type, grade, and condition. In all, sorting metals is not just about organisation; it’s a strategic move to extract the maximum value from your scrap metal collection.

Networking in the Scrap Metal Community

Networking in the scrap metal community opens a gateway to a world of opportunities. Building relationships with local scrapyards and recycling centres isn’t just a formality, it’s a strategic move. Local scrapyards can often be the final destination for scrap metal and can provide valuable information on current market prices, preferred materials, and any specific requirements for metal recycling.

In addition, when you establish a relationship with a trusted metal recycling centre, you can ensure that your scrap metal is fetching a fair price and that it will be recycled responsibly. This kind of networking isn’t just about expanding your contact list, it’s about creating a support system, staying informed about industry trends, and discovering new ways to source and sell scrap metal.

Selling Scrap Metal to be Recycled: The Smart and Sustainable Choice

You’ve decided to sell scrap metal as a side hustle. You have learned about the properties and types of metal, understood how to collect, and sort it, and established a relationship with local scrap yards or recyclers. So, why should you sell your scrap metal to a specialised metal recycler?

Firstly, this process transforms otherwise discarded materials into valuable commodity, which contributes to the circular economy. This means that the environmental footprint associated with metal production is diminished. Secondly, engaging in scrap metal recycling is a win-win scenario; you can get paid while contributing to a more sustainable future. By selling scrap metal, you can boost your income, while participating in the current global effort to reduce environmental strain.

Do You Want to Sell Scrap Metal?

Look no further than Metal Men Recycling. If you are interested in starting your own scrap metal side hustle and have scrap metal, then we want to buy it. We will then recycle your metal, which makes a difference to the environment, and helps you with your bottom line. 

When you are ready to start your scrap metal journey, contact us at 03 5941 6677, or fill out our online contact form, and we will get back to you!

Metal Recycling at Home: 5 Tips for Starting a DIY Metal Recycling Initiative

When it comes to sustainability, our individual contributions are incredibly important. The everyday actions that we take can have a hugely positive impact on the environment, especially when we work together with others in our community towards sustainable projects. One of the best ways to contribute positively to our environment is through recycling, a process that most of us are familiar with from our own households. However, what you might not know is that metal can be recycled as well, and that this has benefits not just for the environment, but for your hip pocket too! Setting up a metal recycling drive is one way to reap the many benefits of metal recycling. From minimising landfill waste, to providing you with an opportunity to sell scrap metal for some extra cash, there are many reasons to start up a metal recycling initiative. Whether you are a school, a workplace, or a community group, why not raise environmental awareness at the same time as potentially raising some extra cash for your organisation?

scrap metal recycling initiative

1: Know and Understand Metal

One of the first steps when setting up a metal recycling drive through your organisation is to educate yourself about metals. This includes gaining knowledge about metal types, metal sorting and separating, and how metals are recycled.

When running a metal recycling initiative, it is important that you can quickly identify different types of metal, so that they can be sorted accordingly. Down the line, sorting the metals you receive will assist the metal recycling professional that you partner with.

2: Set Up Collection Points and Bins

Now it is time to consider how you are going to collect and accept donations of scrap metal for your recycling drive. Will you have a collection point at your school or workplace? Or do you want to set up a collection bin at your home, for friends and family to drop off donations to? Now is also a good time to decide what types of metal you will accept, and in what forms, so that it is clear for those collecting scrap metal and making donations.

3: Learn About the Safe Handling of Metals

When it comes to metal recycling initiatives, ensuring that metal is handled safely at all times is critically important. Ensure that you, and everyone assisting with the recycling drive is educated and trained in ways to safely handle scrap metals. Wearing personal protective equipment such as gloves, steel-toed safety shoes, and dust masks is important to protect against sharp edges and any hazardous materials that you may come across such as lead-based paint that can coat old metal objects.

Another important point is to ensure that you engage metal professionals for tasks that relate to dismantling or disassembling objects in order to obtain scrap metal. It is critical for your safety that you do not take on these tasks yourself, but rather that you leave them to professionals with the correct training and expertise.

4: Engage Your Community

Regardless of the organisation that you belong to, when you set up a DIY recycling drive it is necessary to engage with your community in order to receive donations, and to make your drive as successful as possible. There are many ways that you can engage the community around you, whether you belong to a school, a kindergarten, a workplace, or another type of group. From flyers and leaflets making people aware of the details of the recycling drive, to your very own email campaign, it’s all about marketing! Consider a team lunch promoting the recycling initiative, or a series of social media posts that let your community know about all the ways that metal recycling benefits the environment. When people know the purpose of your initiative, as well as the details like where to drop off donations, you will have more support, and ultimately, a more successful drive.

5: Partner With a Reputable Recycling Centre

Once your recycling initiative has gathered steam and you have received your scrap metal donations, the next step is to get your donations recycled. This is where you need to partner with a reputable recycling professional, such as a specialised metal recycling centre. These professionals have the expertise to recycle scrap metal for you in a safe manner, and in a manner that will benefit the environment. When you partner with a reputable recycling centre, you can sell the metal that you have collected to these professionals, and rest assured that it will be recycled responsibly.

Do You Need to Sell Scrap Metal?

When it comes to metal recycling experts, look no further than Metal Men Recycling. Whether you have excess scrap metal from a DIY recycling drive, or you are a business looking for professional metal recycling, we can help. We pride ourselves on being scrap metal experts, and with over 50 years of combined metal industry expertise, we can provide you with a seamless experience from start to finish.

When you need to sell scrap metal, call us at 03 5941 6677, or you can fill out our online contact form and we will be happy to get back to you. As our motto says, if it’s metal, we want it!

3 Ways To Reuse Household Metals

Chucking out some coat hangers, copper wire or metal cans? Have you thought about giving them a second purpose instead? There is a surprising amount of ways to reuse metals that we’d normally throw away without a second thought. You can turn it into practical items like storage and holders, or let your creativity run wild and create art that will brighten up your home. In this blog, we are going through the creative and fun ways you can turn your metal trash into treasure.

 

Metal Cans

The possibilities for using metal cans around your home are practically endless. With a fresh coat of paint or punching a few holes, your metal cans could be the pride and joy of your home. Here are some things you can turn your cans into:

 

  • Lanterns: just carve out some holes and put in a candle
  • Pen holder: just clean out a can and paint it, then you have a cute new holder for your pens, paint brushes or anything else
  • Cookie cutters: if you have a soda can then you can bend into cute shapes for your baking
  • Metal flowers: you cut the top on the can then cut vertically to make petals
  • Jewellery: you can cut and bend cans into pendants and bracelets

 

There truly is so much you can do with cans; the only limit is your imagination.

 

With the right know how you can turn plain old cans into a brilliant work of art. In fact, metal can art can be incredibly stunning, just check out Noah Deledda’s work. Scrap metal art takes a bit of fiddling but it’s an art form for everybody. You can start by cutting the metal into animal and geometric shapes and go from here.

 

 

Copper wire

 

Copper wire is easily bent and shaped into beautiful art. Because it is sturdy, aesthetically pleasing and malleable it’s a sort after material for artists. It is good for making a strong base and framework for sculptures. Your new ground-breaking, soul-inspiring artwork will hold together with decent copper wire.

If you don’t mind a bit of arts and crafts copper wire can be used to upgrade your décor. For starters, you can use it to replace string for hanging up picture frames, artwork and mirrors. If you hang a metal peg off some copper wire you have a new way to put reminders around the home. You can even use it to hang pot plants! If you’re extra crafty you can turn copper wire into candle holders, napkin holders, baskets and Christmas decorations.

 

Also, with the right copper wire, you can set up some fascinating and cool science experiments for your kids. You can start with a simple copper wire and battery experiment and go from there. Copper wire is conductive and is a key element in a lot of electromagnetic experiments.

 

Coat hangers

 

If you’re about to replace or throw out your coat hangers hold your horses. You can use coat hangers in other ways around your home. All you need is a decent pair of pliers. There are plenty of life hacks with coat hangers that will make you want to hang onto them:

 

  • Towel holders
  • Pot lid holders
  • Magazine wrack
  • Tablet holder
  • Pot plant holder
  • Bowls
  • Wreaths and decorations
  • Frame for vines, tomatoes and other plants

 

Just like with copper wire, you can use metal coat hangers in your art. For example, they can be easily be bent into frames and stands for sculptures. Start playing around and see where your creativity takes you.

 

The right kind of scrap metal can be traded in for money, so don’t miss out on earning some extra cash for recycling. Metal Man Recycling buys scrap metal and can even pick it for you to save you the hassle. Don’t hesitate to get in touch with us on 03 5941 6677 today.

 

 

 

3 Ways To Support Australian Recycling Industry

The future of the Australian recycling industry is a little shaky right now with local government and councils unsure how to handle the excess of waste and recycling. While they are figuring things out on the large scale, there are things you can do in your day-to-day life that can help our recycling industry. Not sure how you can help out? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. In this blog, we sharing tips on how to give recycling the boost it needs.

 

Why does the Australian recycling industry need support?

 

At the moment the Australian recycling industry has hit a hurdle after China stopped taking our recycling. Before the ban, we were sending 30% of our recycling to China and now we have to work out what to do with this excess. The concern is that companies don’t see the worth in recycling because they don’t believe it will be profitable. If nobody is processing our recycling then we risk sending it all to landfill and taking a colossal step backwards in caring for our environment. So supporting the recycling industry is another way of fighting for an environmentally sustainable Australia.

 

Buy recycling

 

Buying products made from recycled materials or using recycled materials for your business helps create a demand for recycled products. The recycling process can be complicated, so often recycled products cost a little more. For this reason, some companies choose not to use recycled materials. By buying recycled products you are sending a message that recycling is worth it. For now, the cost is a little higher but think of it as an investment in the environment.

Here is a list of Australian stores that sell recycled products:

 

  • Who Gives A Crap is an Australian company that uses 100% recycled material to take toilet paper, tissues and towels. Each roll has a cool, modern design and you can buy in bulk.
  • The Oxfam Shop has a range of recycled products from jewellery, bags, fashion, furniture and ornaments.
  • Greenline sells recycled paper as well as other office supplies.
  • Iameco makes computer accessories from recycled and eco-friendly materials.
  • Trex makes decking from 95% recycled wood and plastic film
  • Greentoys have 100% recycled toys for younger children

 

You can also keep an eye on your buying habits can make a difference. For example, instead of buying plastic bottles buy a sustainable water bottle. The same goes for coffee cups, you are doing the environment a favour by getting a keepcup.

 

Smart Recycling

A good way to support the Aussie recycling industry is to make sure you are recycling properly. Even if you think you know the best way to recycle it is worth testing your knowledge. You might learn something new. The basics of smart recycling are to search for the little recycling symbol before chucking it into your yellow bin.

To start you off here is a list of things you should recycle:

 

  • Basic containers and bottles
  • Glass bottles, containers
  • Metal cans and aluminium
  • Scrap paper, letters, newspapers and magazines
  • Cardboard

 

Things you shouldn’t be recycling:

 

  • Polystyrene
  • Take away containers
  • Shredded paper as it should go into your green bin
  • Styrofoam
  • Foil
  • Coffee cups
  • Glad wrap and plastic bags

 

 

Some things, like plastic bags, you’ll need to check in with your local services to see if they recycle it.

 

If you’re not sure how to throw something away properly then take a moment to look it up. Don’t take anything for granted, you’d be surprised. Did you know that massive amounts of clothing are dumped in landfills every ten minutes? If you have old clothes, no matter how ragged, you should drop them off into collection bins where they can find a new life with somebody in need. Before you throw unwanted clothes away think about how you can reuse them in the home. For example, you can turn an old t-shirt into a tote bag.

 

 

Raise Awareness

 

If you care about the environment and are concerned about what the lack of recycling will do to our beautiful earth then make some noise. Contact your local council and let them know. On a smaller scale, you can encourage your friends and family to speak out as well. Inspire them to support recycling and let them know if they are recycling the wrong way.

 

Are you looking to scrap some metal? You can earn some money by recycling your scrap metal. Metal Man Recycling picks up and buys scrap metal. Don’t hesitate to get in touch with us on 03 5941 6677 today.

How Recycling Scrap Metal Helps The Environment

We all know recycling is important. But did you know the impact recycling scrap metal can have on our environment? In this blog, we break down the top four ways recycling scrap metal helps our planet. From reducing air pollution by 86% to decreasing consumer waste by 105%, there’s a lot to be gained from recycling scrap metal. 

 

Recycling metal helps reduce chemical pollution

Chemical pollution is a major problem for our planet today. Although there are many forms of chemical pollution, the term generally refers to the process by which chemicals are released into our environment, disrupting the balance of our ecosystems, polluting our air, threatening our health and contaminating our food. By recycling scrap metal, we reduce the need to ship metal from other countries, which decreases the fuel and emissions caused by long-distance transportation.

Decreased need for landfill sites

Landfill sites are one of the largest sources of chemical and visual pollution. In Australia, there is a heavy reliance on landfill as a form of waste management. In fact, between 2007 and 2007, the volume of waste deposited to landfill increased by 12%. But by recycling items such as scrap metals, we decrease the need for landfill sites, resulting in better air, water and land quality.

Recycling scrap metal helps prevent visual pollution

Metal is produced through mining metal ores. However, most metals are found in barren areas. By recycling scrap metal, we can reduce mining and the subsequent destruction of wildlife and formerly pristine landscapes. This will lessen the overall visual pollution involved in metal mining.

Less energy is used

Generating metal for raw materials is incredibly energy intensive. In fact, it takes approximately the same amount of energy to make 20 cans from recycled metal as it does to make one can from raw materials. By using recycled metal instead of natural resources, one can save more than 75% on energy bills for metals such as aluminium and copper.

While global warming hasn’t stopped, it’s on the decline. Due to efforts, such as recycling scrap metal, we can continue on this trajectory. 

At Metal Men Recycling, we’re passionate about creating a better planet for our future. As expert scrap metal buyers, we help our planet and you by providing cash for scrap metal. To be part of the change, contact us at 03 5941 6677.

How to Choose the Right Scrap Metal Dealer

Choosing a metal recycling scrap yard is about more than just searching for the best prices in your area, you should also consider convenience, professionalism and loyalty programs. In this week’s blog, we give you a few things to look out for when choosing a metal recycler to ensure you have the best possible scrap yard experience.

Business environment

It’s a good idea to physically visit a few different scrap yards so that you can see what kind of technology each one uses and how they run their businesses. If the business has new, high-tech equipment, access to online metal markets and advanced administration protocols, they will probably be capable of handling large volumes of scrap metal, which is great for business to business scrap dealing. However, you shouldn’t rule out a scrap yard just because it has older equipment or a smaller team. Older, family owned businesses are also a great choice, especially for dropping off household items and because of their reduced running costs, they sometimes offer better exchange rates.

Location and hours

Obviously, you’ll need to choose a scrap yard in a convenient location with flexible operating hours so that you can actually trade in your metal goods. Better still, go a for a scrap dealer with its own (free) pick up service and leave collection duties to the scrap metal staff. If you’re working on a construction site and need to get rid of large amounts of scrap metal, your best bet is to find a scrap metal dealer that supplies its own collection bins that can be filled and picked up when the job is complete.

The variety of metal accepted

If most of your scrap metal comes from household items, it’s likely you’ll have a variety of different types of metal to trade in. Look for a scrap yard that accept all ferrous and non-ferrous metals to ensure you can sell your entire haul. If you choose a good scrap yard you should be able to sell:

  • Copper
  • Aluminium
  • Brass
  • Steel (including white goods like washing machines, dishwashers, ovens etc. as well as wrecked cars) and stainless steel
  • Cast iron
  • Bronze
  • Car batteries

Customer service

In any business transaction, good customer service always makes for a more positive experience. By taking the time to get to know your scrap metal dealer, you’ll get an idea of their work ethic and begin to build a rapport, which should result in positive business dealings. You’re better off going to a trustworthy metal scrapper with whom you can establish mutual loyalty over a scrapper who claims they will offer the best price but fails to deliver in terms of service. All good scrappers will reward you for repeat business, so once you find a good one, stick with them!

Special offers

Scrap dealers often offer monthly specials to boost their inventory of certain metals and to keep up with market prices, so if you have large amounts of a particular type of metal (for example aluminum cans or copper wiring), it’s worthwhile checking around for corresponding specials.

Environmental consciousness

By its very nature, metal recycling is an environmentally friendly industry as recycling metal uses far less energy than producing new metal and combats waste. However, some metal scrappers will go the extra mile, using energy efficient vehicles and machinery, reducing fuel consumption wherever possible and implementing environmentally conscious practices such as paperless admin. If minimal environmental impact is a concern of yours, look for metal dealers committed to sustainability.

General pricing

Of course, pricing is a major factor when choosing a scrap yard, as you want to be able to yield a decent profit from your metal recycling efforts. Do your research on market prices and check these against the prices offered by each scrap dealer to make sure you’re getting a fair deal. Remember, prices can vary greatly depending on supply and demand, so you can always ask a trustworthy metal dealer about their market predictions for the coming months so you can figure out when best to cash in your haul.

By keeping these factors in mind when deciding on which scrap yard to sell your scrap metal to, you’ll be able to narrow down your choices to dealers offering competitive prices and friendly, professional service. Metal Men Recycling are a family owned scrap metal company based in Pakenham. Our friendly staff have over 50 years of collective industry experience and we offer fantastic rates for all kinds of ferrous and non-ferrous metals.

Reducing the Energy Consumption of Your Whitegoods

Whitegoods are some of the most important appliances in our homes; we use them daily for cooking, keeping food cool and fresh, washing our clothes, and cleaning, among other things. Because we use whitegoods so often, it’s important for us to know how they work, how we can reduce their overall energy consumption, and how to reduce environmental impacts by taking them to a scrap metal buyer.

Fridges and freezers

Almost every Australian household (estimated at 99.9%) has a refrigerator, and because fridges are usually kept running 24 hours a day, they are often the single biggest consumer of power within a household. Around 13% of Victorian household energy costs are spent on refrigeration, which is why it’s so important to purchase an energy efficient model and maintain proper use. A fridge works by removing heat from the inside (thereby keeping its contents cool) and transferring it outside through its radiator coils. Because of this, it’s important to ensure your fridge isn’t positioned too close to a wall so that heat can properly dissipate.

It’s also a good idea to avoid placing your fridge in enclosed spaces, in direct sunlight in summer, and to avoid putting hot food straight into the fridge, as all of these things will force your fridge to work harder and consume more energy. Radiator coils should be kept free of dust to prevent against incidental insulation, the amount of time your fridge door is left open should be minimised, and door seals should be kept clean and in working order. If you have an old fridge, it’s a good idea to upgrade to a newer model with a high energy star rating. Instead of having your old fridge sent to the tip, take it to a scrap metal buyer to further reduce your energy consumption through recycling.

Washers and dryers

Washing machines are another important household item, and because of how often they are used, and the fact that they can be expected to last for around 10 years or more, it’s important to invest in an energy efficient model. An efficient washing machine (at least 3.5 stars for energy and 4 stars for water) can save you up to 21,000 litres of water per year and up to 25% of normal running costs over a lifetime. It’s a good idea to look for a front loading washing machine with cold water cycle options in order save on water and energy. To further reduce your energy bills you should:

  • Wash using a cold cycle wherever possible
  • Ensure your washing machine contains a full load before use
  • Use the highest spin cycle to minimise the use of a clothes dryer

Clothes dryers are used in around 54% of Victorian households, however how often and how long they are used for varies a lot between households. It’s always best to let clothes dry naturally outside whenever possible, however if you must use a clothes dryer, look for an energy efficient model such as a heat pump or gas dryer. Electric dryers should have at least a 2-star energy rating. To minimise the energy consumption of your dryer it’s best to:

  • Clean the filter before use
  • Ensure proper airflow to the surrounding area to minimise humidity
  • Dry heavy and lightweight clothing separately
  • Make use of heat emitted by the machine by drying multiple loads consecutively

With both washing machines and dryers, you should always invest in the most energy efficient option in order to minimise your energy bills and your impact on the environment. Old washing machines and dryers can be taken to a metal recycling company in Melbourne in exchange for cash.

Dishwashers

Dishwashers are present in around 50% of Victorian households and are used between four and seven times per week. By looking for a water and energy efficient dishwasher, you can drastically reduce your bills: each extra energy star can save you up to 30% on running costs. To maximise the efficiency of your dishwasher you should:

  • Only use your dishwasher on full loads
  • Run the eco cycle wherever possible
  • Regularly clean the filter

Again, old dishwashers should not simply be dumped and sent to landfill, but sent to be recycled by a reputable metal recycler.

Remember that whitegoods are meant to have a long lifespan, and by selecting well rated models and repairing small problems, you will be able to reduce not only your energy consumption and bills, but also your overall consumption of materials. If any of your whitegoods are no longer functional, or if you’re updating to more efficient models, then you should take your old whitegoods to a scrap metal buyer. The metal from your whitegoods can be recycled again and again, so when you trade them in as cash for scrap, you are reducing the waste that goes to landfill, conserving resources, and reducing emissions created in the production of new materials. Metal Men Recycling can give you cash for scrap metal and even have a scrap metal pickup service for heavier items.

All About Brass

If you’re looking around your home for valuable scrap metal, steel and aluminium aren’t your only options – you can also recycle alloys like brass. Brass is a very versatile metal, used for conductive purposes, in machinery, as a decorative material and even jewellery. Read on to find out more about this incredibly useful metal.


What is brass?

Brass is an alloy, which is a combination (solution or compound) of two or more elements, one of which must be a metal. Brass is the alloy of copper and zinc, which allows it to exhibit the positive characteristics of both metals, i.e. brass is a stronger metal than copper, and is considered more visually appealing than zinc. Copper is the main component of brass, accounting for 55% to 95% of its overall weight, while the second main component, zinc, makes up 5% to 40% of the total weight. The more zinc present in brass, the stronger it will be, however it will also be more susceptible to corrosion. Brass can also contain other fortifying metals like lead (which improves machinability), iron (which makes the brass stronger and easier to shape) and arsenic and/or antimony (which help prevent against corrosion in zinc heavy brass. Brass can also contain very small amounts of manganese, silicon, and phosphorus.

When was it first made?

It is believed brass was first (unwittingly) manufactured as early as 3000 B.C., by ancient metal workers who were trying to make bronze (a compound of copper and tin). Because tin and zinc are sometimes present together in the earth’s crust, and have similar properties, the metal workers would not have realised they were making a different compound. By 300 A.D., brass was a large part of the metalworking industry in Western Europe, however it wasn’t until 1746 that zinc was identified as a unique element by a German scientist named Andreas Sigismund Marggraf. The process of combing copper and zinc to make brass was eventually patented in England in 1746.

What is it used for?

Because of its durability and decorative features, brass has a very wide range of uses, both around the home and in industry. Brass is used:

As a conductor

Although brass is only 28% as conductive as copper, it is still used as a conductor of electricity, especially in instances where its durability and resistance to corrosion are of an advantage.

In plumbing

Brass is a favoured material in plumbing due to its corrosion resistant properties. Brass pipes usually contain a larger percentage of copper, and brass containing 85% copper is referred to as red brass.

To make instruments

Because of its compound properties, brass is able to produce a unique sound, making it the perfect material to use in musical instruments. While its parent metal, copper, produces a very dead and flat sound, brass is capable of achieving rich tones, and its malleability combined with its durability has allowed it to be used in the manufacture of trombones, trumpets and French horns for many hundreds of years. The brass section has been a key component of orchestras since 1815.

In ammunition

Metal cartridge casings for firearms were first invented in 1852, and although several different metals were experimented with, brass was the most appropriate metal for the job. The brass compound used to make cartridges is even called cartridge brass, and has a 30% zinc content. The softest type of brass, gilding metal, is also used to make ammunition jackets.

In jewellery

Brass is commonly used to make jewellery as it is able to be highly polished. There is even a variation of brass called Prince’s Metal or Prince Rupert’s metal (named after Prince Rupert of the Rhine) used to imitate gold.

To make coins

One of the first uses for brass was to make coins, and it is still used for this purpose many hundreds of years later. Nickel brass (70% copper, 24.5% zinc and 5.5% nickel) is used to make the British pound sterling coin, and Nordic gold (a brass compound made of 89% copper, 5% aluminium, 5% zinc, and 1% tin) is used to make 10, 20 and 50 cent Euro coins.

There are many more uses for brass, which is a testament to its versatility and durability as a metal. If you have any of these brass items lying around your home unused, it may be worth trading them in for cash. Metal Men Recycling will give you cash for scrap metal, and will turn your old brass into something new.

6 Tools & Tricks of the Scrap Metal Trade

Selling scrap metal can be a great way to earn some extra cash but if you have never done it before you may be a bit unsure about how to get started. Here are a few popular tools and tips which can help you make money from scrap metal.

  1. A magnet will come in handy

While some scrap metal yards accept both ferrous and non-ferrous metals, the latter (which includes metals such as copper, aluminium and stainless steel) are more valuable to recycle and will fetch you more cash at the scrap metal yard. You can work out which type of metal you have by using any kind of magnet (even a fridge magnet will work).

If the magnet sticks to your metal then you are in possession of a ferrous metal such as steel or iron. Ferrous metal is not worth a lot but Metal Men Recycling will still accept it and make sure it is recycled properly.

If the magnet does not stick to your metal then you have a non-ferrous metal on your hands and may be able to make some serious money by selling it to scrap metal buyers.

  1. Safety gear is essential

It’s important to take certain precautions when collecting metal, especially if it’s old or rusty. You should protect yourself when collecting scrap metal by wearing clothing that covers your skin adequately, work boots, goggles and thick gloves.

  1. A metal file will reveal the true colour

As some metals are worth more than others, it can be handy to determine exactly which type of metal you have come across. By using a metal file to file down coated items or wires you can identify the type of metal. Some copper and brass pipes may be tarnished but when you use a metal file you can reveal the original colour of the metal. Copper is a reddish colour and brass pipes will appear yellowish in colour.

  1. All that glitters is not gold

Scrap metal prices vary based on material and location. Scrap metal is also graded according to what type of material it is and what condition it is in. It can be challenging at times to estimate the value of your metal unless you constantly have your finger on the pulse of the metal market (or scrap regularly). However, you can utilise sites like Kitco to determine current market prices. The most profitable scrap metals generally include copper, aluminium, silver, gold, brass, stainless steel, iron and lead.

  1. Basic information is just a click away

Basic knowledge of different types of metals is extremely useful when getting started at scrapping metal. There a lots of online guides to metal types such as eBay’s Guide to Different Types of Metals and Alloys which give you a great overview of the features and characteristics of a range of metals.

  1. You could be sitting on a gold mine!

If you own your own home/business or rent a large property, chances are you have something lying around that you could sell to a scrap metal company. From cans and wires to cars and old machinery, Metal Men Recycling will give you cash for any kind of scrap metal. To find out what items can represent great sources of scrap metal consult our informative blog or contact our friendly team.

Looking for Scrap? Here are 4 Places to Find Scrap Iron around the Home

When we think of household scrap metal, our minds often turn to things like old car shells, huge collections of aluminium cans, steel fencing, and copper wiring, however iron is also a great source of scrap metal and can be found in many furnishings and appliances around the home. Whether you’re having a big cleanout, are renovating, or simply want to make some extra cash, it’s a great idea to scour your home for scrap iron to be recycled in exchange for cash. Read on to find out where you can find scrap iron throughout your home.

Awnings and old window frames

Many older style houses (of which there are plenty throughout Melbourne) have wrought iron finishings like window frames and awnings. Because iron is so durable it makes a fantastic building material, so if you’re renovating your old home you’re bound to find iron somewhere. Not too long ago, iron was commonly used as a sturdy material for window frames, as it was able to keep the window in place and withstand high winds, and iron awnings above windows and doors were a popular form of decoration.

Ovens and stovetops

Beneath the layers of enamel, many older style ovens are actually made from valuable iron, so if you’ve got an old oven that you want to get rid of – either because it no longer works or because you’re upgrading – hold onto it and trade it in as scrap. If your oven isn’t made of iron, your stovetop undoubtedly will be, so salvage any old cooking elements and take them to your local metal recycler.

Bed frames and clothes racks

The bedroom seems an unlikely place to find scrap iron, however items like bed frames, dresser chairs, and clothing racks can all be made from iron and should be recycled rather than thrown out. Sometimes these items are coated with decorative paint, so if you’re unsure whether your furniture is made from iron make sure you scratch away at part of the surface.

If you come across any of these items around your home, don’t throw them away. Instead, take them to your local scrap metal dealer where you can earn cash for scrap. Metal Men Recycling accept a huge range of ferrous and non-ferrous metals and will gladly take any unwanted scrap metal off your hands.

How to harvest scrap metal from your garage

It’s very easy for the home garage to become a place of clutter, especially if it’s not where you usually park your car. While the garage seems like the perfect place to store electronics and appliances in need of repairs, handy items like wiring, an onslaught of tools, and old batteries, it’s unlikely that you’ll ever get round to fixing/using all these things, which is why it’s a great idea to clear out your garage and trade in any scrap metal for cash. Read on to find out how to sell scrap metal harvested from your garage.

Old tools

While having a tool kit is always handy, there’s not much point in keeping tools with very specific purposes if you haven’t had to use them in years, or worse still, don’t know what they’re for. Consolidate your tool kit, keeping only things that you have a use for and set aside any doubles, unknowns or tools that are looking a bit worse for wear. These unwanted tools are often a great source of scrap metal, so add them to the pile to be taken to your local scrap metal dealer.

Chicken wire

When cleaning out your garage you’ll have to make some serious decisions about what to throw out and what to keep. Although having things like chicken wire and copper wiring on hand may seem like a good idea, these unnecessary items are probably just taking up space and would be better off being recycled. Plus, by selling them as scrap metal you’ll be able to use the money for something you actually need.

Broken electronics and appliances

Old electronics are often another great source of scrap metal, so scour your garage for things like old AC units, computer monitors, televisions and kitchen appliances like fridges and freezers. Instead of repairing these items (which you’re probably never going to get around to) you can de-clutter your garage, trade them in for cash, and replace them with more energy efficient appliances.

Once you’ve cleared out your garage, it’s time to take your scrap metal harvest to your local scrap metal dealer, or if it’s a particularly large pile, have them come to you. Metal Men Recycling offer a 24-hour scrap metal pick up service in Melbourne and will give you cash for scrap. To arrange pick up, call us today on 03 5941 6677.

Where to Find Aluminium Scrap Around the Home

Aluminium is a non-ferrous metal with a huge number of applications. It is used in everything from construction to transportation to everyday household items. One of the great things about aluminium is how easily it can be recycled: it is able to be recycled endlessly without deteriorating in quality. Here are a few places that you can find aluminium around the home, so that you can earn some cash for scrap metal.

Cans and packaging

A great way to start selling scrap metal is to collect all your soft drink, food and beer cans. If you collect enough, you can get a surprisingly good return on these aluminium cans. Aluminium is also found in aerosol cans, so be sure to hold on to empty deodorant cans and cleaning sprays. Cans and tins aren’t the only source of aluminium packaging; the valuable metal can also be found in foil, takeaway food containers and pie trays.

Car Parts

Aluminium is being increasingly used in car manufacturing, and can be found in car parts such as wheels and cylinders. Once recycled, this mixed alloy aluminium scrap is used to make casting alloys for engines and gearboxes.

Electronics

Electronics such as computers, gaming consoles and even iPods all contain aluminium. If your electronics no longer work, don’t throw them out, salvage their parts for aluminium and make some cash for scrap.

Utensils

The kitchen is a great place to look for scrap aluminium as it can be found in a variety of kitchen utensils such as cutlery, baking trays and cookware.

Bike frames

Instead of throwing out your tired old bike, salvage the frame and add it to your pile of scrap metal.

Aluminium can be sourced from a variety of household items and is a great metal to trade in to your local metal recycler. Not only will you be able to get cash for scrap, your recycling will also benefit the environment. Metal Men Recycling accept all kinds of aluminium scrap and can even arrange a 24-hour scrap metal pick up service.