Hard Drive Tear Down For Precious Metals! In Detail HD
Here is my video on details of scrap hard
drive. This is not a video on how to take a part a hard drive. If you want to see that,
Watch my first video. Taking of the retaining ring it is held in with 4 or 5 aluminum machined
aluminum. If you have a bag of them they sell quite well on Ebay. They can be used in arts
and crafts. Here is the read-write actuator. It moves back and forth reading and writing
information on to these very shiny platters. Now these platters are made of either aluminum
or glass and are coated with cobalt and then a very thin layer 1 micron thick of palladium
or platinum. These discs have to be absolutely perfect or they do not work. The manufacturers
put the palladium on the disc, by a process called sputtering. I am basically saying it
is an oxidized layer of palladium. Do not waste your time trying to recover the palladium.
You need 1000s of discs just to get one gram! Now here is my favorite part of every single
hard drive I take a part. The neodymium magnets. this is the most valuable part for me in scrapping
hard drives. If you put 10 of these together, you can get anywhere from 15-75 dollars on
Ebay! The neodymium magnets are mounted on a bracket made of MU-metal. When scrapping
hard drives for profit leave the magnet attached to the bracket. Here is the read-write actuator.
The actuator is made up mainly of aluminum. It has a copper coil at the end and a ball
bearing assembly in the middle. I took this macro shot just to show you the size and scale
of the read-write actuator tip. This shows you actually how much gold is in there. It
is not a lot, but as you can see it is quite bright and pretty when you can get a close
up view of it. Now attached to the side of the actuator, is a ribbon and in that ribbon
there can be gold tracing or copper trace wiring, leading up to the data connections.
Now the metal actually inside the ribbon is copper. You will find gold plate leaf underneath
the ribbon around the data head. the gold leaf is extremely thin and separating it from
ribbon is extremely tedious! the only way I can see to efficiently separate the metals
from all of the plastic and the ribbons, would be to incinerate them. Then seperate the metals
chemically. Here is the second half to our pair of magnets. What makes the neodymium
magnets so great is how strong they are. They are VERY powerful, for their size and EXTREMELY
fun to play with! If you can get hard drives from the early 90s, the magnets are much larger.
on newer drives you are going to find, smaller magnets. But just as powerful. Now the next
part is what most scrappers go after. Some people just unscrew the logic circuit board
and toss the rest of the drive into the aluminum pile. the hard drive circuit board is where
you are going to find most of your precious metals. Starting with the gold plated connection
pins. The layer of gold on the connection pins is actually quite thick in comparison
with typical gold plating. You are also going to find contacts with partial gold plating.
Where just the tips of them are gold plated. Manufacturers have gotten pretty good over
the years at using less and less gold. In the end all data connections and pins are
gold plated. Now on these high grade boards yor are going to find large square and rectangular
chips. If you were to take the top of that chip and remove it, you would find multiple
gold bonding wires, 1 micron thick. Attached to each one of the silver contacts on the
side of the chip. Next valuable item located on the board is the monolithic ceramic capacitors.
these rectangular shaped components can vary in size and in color. They will be marked
on the board with a “C” and then a number.In this one “C45”. they are extremely valuable
due to the silver and palladium content. They can easily be removed from the board with
low heat and a spatula. here is the bottom side of the hard drive motor. You will find
gold leaf contacts. There is not a lot of gold here. Now this is an older hard drive.
On newer hard drives you will not find screws to remove the whole motor. The only way to
remove the motor is with a punch and really not worth the time. This one actually had
three screws holding it in. You are not going to find many hard drives like this anymore.
If you get a bunch of them, you can sell them on Ebay. If not they go straight into the
aluminum bin. here is the forged aluminum housing. this particular housing weighed half
a pound. Like Comment and Subscribe. Let me know what you think. And again… Thanks for