Picture of Gold recovery correctly

I will detail a SAFE process of turning old electronic parts into little round lumps of pure gold.  There are many tutorials that claim to offer methods of gold recovery such as "Cupellation"*.  These processes are DANGEROUS and put the user at the risk of inhaling vaporized metals.
No over the counter breather will protect you from these dangers; Only lab grade isolated breathing systems can protect against metal vapors.   ********************************** SEE HEALTH HAZARD ON STEP 6***************************************

**** a Side cautionary note,  This process is not suitable to purify Panned Gold or KARAT (Gold Alloyed with silver.) This Guide is best suited for gold plated or pure gold object.


*Cupellation is a refining process in metallurgy, where ores or alloyed metals are treated under high temperatures and controlled operations to separate noble metals, like gold and silver, from base metals like lead, copper, zinc, arsenic, antimony or bismuth, present in the ore. The process is based on the principle that precious metals do not oxidise or react chemically, unlike the base metals; so when they are heated at high temperatures, the precious metals remain apart and the others react forming slags or other compounds

Step 1: SAFETY FIRST, Always.

Picture of SAFETY FIRST, Always.
In this instructable you will be working with basic house hold chemicals.  By themselves these chemicals can be fairly harmless.  The combination of such chemical which will be presented in this instructable can be EXTREMELY hazardous;  By such there are a couple of safety items which are not Optional.  THE FOLLOW ITEMS ARE REQUIRED.  FAILURE TO OBTAIN THESE ITEMS BEFORE HAND CAN POSSIBLY COMPROMISE YOUR HEALTH.  

Item # 1.

Breathing equipment.  You will need a chemical mask rated AT LEAST as a P100. If you dont know what a P100 rating means It is your responsibility to yourself to find out.

Item # 2
Heavy duty Gloves.  pvc or rubber is fine,  do not use Latex or Nitrile gloves.

Item # 3

Safety Glasses.  Any pair will work as long as It is safety rated and solvent rated.

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klamp542 years ago
Will this work with gold on magnetic based parts ?
I have some old glass resistors from 70's, a few pounds anyway, I'd like to know before I mess it up.
Railes (author)  klamp542 years ago
No, ferrous metals will vastly reduce the effectiveness of chemical bath 1, the resulting pulp will not re-precipitate any gold I'm the final step. For magnetic conductors use Aqua Regina.

How do you recover the copper from the HCL, hydrogen peroxide and copper solution?

enemek12 days ago

this is should be fun, I'av made some collection. but looking a safe way of doing it.

FredBack17 days ago

I'm confused. My understanding was that only AR can dissolve gold. You are saying that gold can be dissolved with HCL and Clorox? I thought nitric acid was required?

RonD220 days ago

bonide stump out is smb it is just coled by an name they used years ago. smb is not sodium bicarb "baking soda" i should know i am a patented publised scientist.

Ron Donahue and pk11195, patents BS/MS/MDs/PhD

AnnaG141 month ago

I did all steps, tests were good, when melted I got glass not gold. please help

AnnaG141 month ago
Amybaby3141 month ago
You mentioned putting 3G of flakes into the solution... what was the weight of 24K gold of the finished product? Thank you for your time. ?
BoudyB2 months ago
Help !!!! When i added some of smb the solution become clear and no ppt although solution contain gold
NajmY2 months ago

Hello there, Can I use Sodium bisulfate NaHSO4 instead of Sodium Metbisulfite MBS (Na2S2O5)?

According to the MSDS, Bonide Stumpout is sodium metabisulfite, which is NOT the same compound as sodium bisulfate, but you are correct - sodium bisulfate cannot be substituted for Stumpout. Clorox bleach is sodium hypochlorite; sodium hypochlorate does not exist.

rhoogeveen3 months ago

Railies thanks for this info, I have come back to this instructable many times. Question about how much peroxide to use? On the gold forum I have seen it mentioned several times that if you use more than 25% peroxide in the first bath you may loose gold in the solution. The instuctions say 50%! would it be better to lower that and use a bubbler?

Hi Railes,
You had said that you always refine the 'gold fingers' because everything else is more of a process...I was wondering...what about the gold plated connector pins from Hard Drives...Floppy Drives...CD and DVD drives...MotherBoards and DaughterBoards...ISA Slots...PCI Slots...AGP Slots...Etc?


What you just described sounds similar to gold fingers. In case you didn't know, gold fingers are the contact points on, say, RAM sticks and I think they would be about the same.

theegghead5 months ago


vishnuj35 months ago
BrandonH36 months ago

when I did this process everything worked the way explained until I got to the end where I added the stump out to recover the gold from the solution. when I added the stump out it didn't turn the mud color and I got crystals at the bottom of my container. can you tell me what I did wrong?

Anyone know of any legitimate buyers my worries are a few things like being ripped like at a pawn shop or denied based on a high weight amount for a years worth of gold recovery it would be a real disappointment if say I yield 1 pound bar and could collect my 20,000 as the price is based now
Cryxis9911 months ago

I will be doing this for a school experiment and was wondering where to take the waste, would a normal waste disposal place accept the glass jars full of acid and metal or are there specific places to take this acid?

Also when combining the muratic acid and hydrogen peroxide about how violent is the reaction? would I be able to do that in a fume hood?

You can also use aluminum foil in the copper chloride to drop out copper if any trace copper is in it the use of aluminum till no more reaction cause the acid in the solution to be used up leaving a clear liquid with powdered copper when it settles at the bottom of the container
kent.kulrich7 months ago
And what about platinum?
kent.kulrich7 months ago
Hey dose this method also remove the palladium from the ceramic capacitors? Or i guess what im askin is if this would work for palladium? Or would the process be different?.
AneelC9 months ago

Our experiment color turns green when we added sol of HCl , H2SO4 and water. Does this mean gold is already separated in this process ??? We use gold pins obtained from processor

AneelC9 months ago

Our experiment color turns green when we added sol of HCl , H2SO4 and water. Does this mean gold is already separated in this process ??? We use gold pins obtained from processor

Ronnie47919 months ago
Railes, not sure if you are keeping up with these postings.
But, I have done some gold recovering and one issue I'm having is the gold is so fine it goes through the filter paper.
So, is there a way to recover the fine gold that is in the muratic acid and hydrogen peroxide mix ????
Any help will be nice....
Thanks, Ronnie
PopsicleGhoul11 months ago

Wow! Super great Instructable! I am currently stripping the gold foils from my RAM chips using a 10:1 H202:H2S04 mix. I may try your method of further refining the gold once that finishes.

Dmytro K1 year ago

Hi I was wondering if you process the gold plated parts,and the computer chips magnetic and non magnetic.If you do what method do you use,Aqua regia?,reverse electroplating?One last thought how do you feel this method compares to Aqua Regia for dissolving the gold?Also very good instructable.Clear,and to the point.

Powersb2 years ago
Really interesting procedure (never seen anything like this). Can you use the same procedure for pins containing gold? Can I use potassium metabisulfite instead of sodium Bisulfite (i cant find any)?
sodium bisulfite aka baking soda right?

If you don't know the difference between baking soda and sodium bisulfite, you need to keep away from all chemical compounds.

Railes (author)  num1bandit1 year ago
no baking soda is calcium carbonate. and yes you can use pottassium metabisulfite.
aka ph down?
Railes (author)  Powersb2 years ago
That shouldnt be an issue. Instead of creating sodium chloride. You would create potassium chloride the resulting exchance. Should create so2 gas. Lol give it a try, just dont hold your face over the beaker if you added distilled water ..
bjawed11 year ago

Will this method work on gold plated/polished pens,paper holders and other stationary accessories? Please respond as i am going to start this tommorow after i buy all the chemicals tonight.Will i have to amend the first and the second bath in any way as i'm not recovering gold from computer chips rather items that are completely gold plated.Though the base metal might be something else which i'm not sure of.Will this work?

cdillard21 year ago
Just found an earlier post, and it says that only sodium BISULFATE 99.5% and up will drop the gold. So this means my 93% pool stuff won't work???
camk cdillard21 year ago

sodium metabusulfite or SMB can be found at any home beer making outlet

dmallon11 year ago

about how much did all the materials cost?

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