Flashback Friday: Experiment - Can You Mine Gold From Old Motherboards?

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Yannick Guerrini


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  • Fetal
    Amazing. Nothing can replace gold of course. Good for us, giving advice not to do in your home or i was ready to do it.
  • Tamz_msc
    A very nice, off-the-track article!
  • tony singh
    I can give u 2 balls of gold if u repeat that process for me...hehe
  • welshmousepk
    excellent experiment. was very fun to read.

    what will you do with the ball of gold? would make a cool giveaway ;)
  • cangelini
    greghomeWhy is there not a Don't Try this at home quote?

    There is, right on the first page ;-)
  • dragonfang18
    Soo... That pile of motherboards would make a nice gold tooth for someone...
  • victomofreality
    But it’s still interesting and fun to know that it’s technically possible to recover gold from motherboards using a homemade process.

    Homemade process? where does someone find 95% concentrated sulfuric acid for home use? I've read cockroaches can swim in sulfuric acid and have always wanted to test that :P
  • lashton
    see toms this is an interesting article, now what we expect from toms is an article like "IPhone puches kid in face"
  • TheStealthyOne
    That's so cool!
  • jimslaid2
    Now lets all send Tom's all of our old Motherboards and add in cards and see what we can come up with. I've got about a Dozen.
  • mortesv
    Cool article! Can I buy the gold BB? I think I have 3 dollars stashed away somewhere... :)
  • calmstateofmind
    You could imprint the small amount of gold with a design and make a charm for a bracelet or something...if you had a nerdy girlfriend she'd love the idea!
  • pioykowsky
    It could be even more interesting (and reasonable) to recover copper from old computer parts. Everyone tried? :)
  • jsm6746
    this remind anyone else of making hash?
  • MU_Engineer
    I have worked in a lab with dangerous chemicals, and this reaction certainly uses dangerous chemicals. You would need the following equipment to work safely with these chemicals:
    1. Fume hood (which the author obviously didn't use)
    2. Chemical gloves (which he did have)
    3. Chemical-resistant apron (which he didn't use)
    4. Full face shield (we didn't see his face)
    5. Closed-toe shoes or boots (we didn't see his feet)
    6. Emergency eye wash and emergency shower (we didn't see these)
    So basically, it's a "don't try this at anything less than a university lab" type of procedure.
  • rohitbaran
    That is some dangerous looking practical chemistry with a pretty lucrative result! :)
  • shortbus25
    I have about 30 or 40 mobos and diff old circuit boards with gold on them what are the names of some of these companies that recycle these? Do they pay for them or is it donation only?
  • ethaniel
    Make a pair of those, put them in a pair of earrings, and you could melt the heart of any geek girl out there. :D
  • Reynod
    MU made some good points about safety there but I will assume the THG team had all of the PPE.

    I would imagine the older mobos and peripherals would have had more gold deposited on contacts than newer ones.

    The price of gold was much lower in the past for a start.

    I am thinking those Russian X86 clone CPU's would have been a great source of gold, along with high end Mil Spec components.

    The inside of older Klystrons and other microwave devices would have also been a good source.

    Mil Spec Cannon connectors ... other avionics components and cabling.

    Great article Yannick.
  • anamaniac
    That was actually somewhat interesting.

    Though just for an idea on the scale of things...
    Gold was worth ~$450 per troy ounce in 2005.
    There are ~29,167 troy ounces per ton.
    318 tons of gold equates to $4,173,797,700.
    4 trillion dollars in a single year, back in 2005.
    With gold closing at $1185, and growth in the electronics industry, can you imagine what kind of numbers are involved in this year?
  • spartanii
    jsm6746this remind anyone else of making hash?

    or hash oil hehe
  • damasvara
    GOOOLLLDDD!!!... ****$___$***
  • steelbox
    Tamz_mscA very nice, off-the-track article!

    Certainly, i would really like to see an article where toms get the most out of an motherboard, GPU or other add in card and processors, and to analyze the quantities used of gold and other metals along the evolution of computer hardware.
  • geofry
    I'm having college chem lab flash backs. Pretty cool article.