When you sell gold on 47th Street, there are two ways to go. You can sell at any one of the small gold dealers (or the larger ones), or you can go straight to a refinery that melts it for you. Prices are often in the same neighborhood, but when you have scrap that’s not identifiable, or that you suspect is thickly plated over silver, or lots of individual pieces that would have to be tested individually, going to a refinery and “making a melt” is best.
This means that your gold scrap is melted into a little blob, or bullion, and then analyzed electronically for gold content. You then get paid out the exact value of your melt in cash, and you are given a copy of the elemental analysis for proof. You should bring a few grams at least (I’m sure there’s a minimum but I think so), otherwise it’s not worth doing.
|Making the "Melt"|
The analysis is then printed out for you and you take to the cash register to get paid. You also get a receipt, and now it’s done, there’s no return, no coming back if you changed your mind. The place I go to is for businesses only, you have to provide your business name, address, and bring ID, which is photocopied. The melt is invoiced, and I believe it is kept for 24 hrs before it gets shipped out. All this helps reduce the chances that the gold is stolen, but of course it doesn’t completely eradicate it.