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Author: Subject: Buy PdCl2 from Alibaba; Recover Pd; Profit?
DaftStrategery
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Buy PdCl2 from Alibaba; Recover Pd; Profit?

Greetings all! I'm an EE but I like to do a bit of electroplating and anodizing and such in the ol' workshop.

Whilst stumbling around Alibaba on the hunt for cheap precious metal salts I saw a bunch of listings for PdCl2 at what can't possibly be correct prices - like $100US / kg. Before I get too excited about the prospect of becoming an instant thousandaire (like a millionaire, except 10^-3 smaller), I want to investigate the feasibility of the process, specifically: 1. Has anyone successfully purchased chemicals from Alibaba and actually got what was claimed - I'd hate to order a kg of PdCl2 only to get some vaguely reddish-brown dirt instead. 2. What would be the best way to recover the palladium from the salt? I was thinking that simply plating it onto a sheet of Pd foil would be the most direct approach, but that may be the result of technological myopia (that is, I am familiar with plating so that would be the obvious route to me). Perhaps some kind of chemical reduction would be more appropriate, though, as it wouldn't require purchasing a very expensive sheet of Pd foil. wg48 International Hazard Posts: 613 Registered: 21-11-2015 Member Is Offline Mood: No Mood  Quote: Originally posted by DaftStrategery Greetings Whilst stumbling around Alibaba on the hunt for cheap precious metal salts I saw a bunch of listings for PdCl2 at what can't possibly be correct prices - like$100US / kg.

Yes your correct, that is not correct price. They just put a generic price in the ad. You have to contact them for actual price.

Bert

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Yup. Stuff that costs $1,000 kg+++ is routinely listed as "$1 to $100", you need to ask for a real quote. Rapopart’s Rules for critical commentary: 1. Attempt to re-express your target’s position so clearly, vividly and fairly that your target says: “Thanks, I wish I’d thought of putting it that way.” 2. List any points of agreement (especially if they are not matters of general or widespread agreement). 3. Mention anything you have learned from your target. 4. Only then are you permitted to say so much as a word of rebuttal or criticism. Anatol Rapoport was a Russian-born American mathematical psychologist (1911-2007). DaftStrategery Harmless Posts: 13 Registered: 4-1-2018 Member Is Offline Mood: No Mood I suspected as much, but even at$10000 / kg this would still be a worthwhile endeavor; there's about 50% Pd by weight in PdCl2, right?
DaftStrategery
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Hmmm, so I did a bit of googling on how to recover Pd from PdCl2 and some of the results were a bit alarming as it seems PdCl2 is used to make drugs.

Still, I did come across some interesting papers on the treatment of wastewater from refining/recycling and one process sounds particularly interesting: cementation. Apparently you just stir some zinc or aluminum powder into a solution of PdCl2 in water and the Cl2 will attach to the Zn or Al, leaving the Pd to precipitate out! It sounds so simple I have to wonder what I'm missing; much like with the pricing of said Pd salt on Alibaba.

aga
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In theory, at $10,000 per kg, you could end up with a max of 600g of Pd out of 1kg which is worth, in theory$21,276, so your basic idea is right.

"Palladium Price Per Gram $35.46" Now, that price is for someone established in the Palladium market with assayed product and involved buyers. If you end up with a lump of Pd in your hands, who are you gonna sell it to ? Even if you manage to find someone, they WILL reduce the price massively as they do not know you, trust your assay statement or legal status. Same goes for gold, platinum, stolen diamonds, ancient artifacts, nazi art treasures etc. Next is the cost of extracting the Pd from the PdCl2, the process efficiency and the Time required. Also the cost of disposing of the waste products. All these tiny problems kick the bottom out of most PM recovery get-rich schemes. Madness is thinking i'm not drunk. DaftStrategery Harmless Posts: 13 Registered: 4-1-2018 Member Is Offline Mood: No Mood Yes, the proverbial devil is always in the details, but selling the "scrap" palladium isn't that difficult, nor do you get penalized in price per gram (or troy ounce, as it were) as much as when you sell, say, scrap aluminum or copper. See this website for up to date prices on scrap palladium of various grades and quantities: http://directgold.metallix.com/palladium/ Of course, if the PdCl2 costs more than around$20US/g then recovering the Pd from it is unlikely to end happily, but metal prices change all the time and what is unprofitable today might be profitable tomorrow.

Now, about possible methods to get the Pd out of the PdCl2... the most promising two I've found are ion exchange in which aluminum or zinc trade places with palladium, but there can be a problem with the resulting Pd taking up lots of hydrogen when excess Zn or Al is destroyed with acid. The other chemical method which I found the barest mention of in another post on here is to boil in the PdCl2 in sodium formate buffered to a pH of 5. That sounds fairly easy (famous last words, I know).

Electrowinning - basically, refining through electrolysis - is still on the table, and could be the best method overall, but would also take the longest and requires a minimum level of PdCl2 in solution to work; perhaps too much, unless this is done semi-continuously.
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Elemetal Direct will buy your palladium. They pay 80% of spot based on purity of your metal. So if you had 995 pure palladium then the would pay .995 X .8 X spot = payout.

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Palladium is the easiest of the six sister metals in the platinum group to refine. Partly because it is the only one of the six to dissolve in hot dilute nitric acid.

DaftStrategery
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 Quote: Originally posted by kadriver Elemetal Direct will buy your palladium. They pay 80% of spot based on purity of your metal. So if you had 995 pure palladium then the would pay .995 X .8 X spot = payout.

Wow, thanks for that tip - Elemetal Direct is located just a few miles from me!

Now I just need to decipher the Chinglish responses from my Alibaba inquiries; assuming any of them respond to my request for pricing on 1kg.

EDIT - and figure out how best to convert PdCl2 back to Pd... ahem...

[Edited on 4-1-2018 by DaftStrategery]
DaftStrategery
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 Quote: Originally posted by kadriver Palladium is the easiest of the six sister metals in the platinum group to refine. Partly because it is the only one of the six to dissolve in hot dilute nitric acid.

Hmmm, isn't nitric acid virtually impossible to purchase because of DHS restrictions? Also, while I feel I am very competent technically, I am less confident in my ability to safely use nitric acid or cyanide solutions, to name 2 that are commonly used to recover PGMs.

Bert

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Additionally, if you end up with a kilo of something that is NOT (a platinum group metal) chloride, how are you going to pursue whoever in China burned you?

We deal with China a good bit. If you don't go there and meet the people, see the specific product you want, hash out a deal the Chinese are happy with and then have someone knowledgable who YOU pay watch the loading to ensure that is what will be shipped , things happen.

(Edit)
Additionally, as we are spending hundreds of thousands of dollars which could bankrupt us to lose, we structure our payments. A certain % down at time of agreement & our order being accepted. Another % on completion of order and our agent in China signing off on quality, quantity and general conformation to spec., before trucking to port at loading of container(s) from factory warehouse. Another % when FOB (order is on a ship and will be leaving China, short of a ship wreck, nuclear war, etc.). And the last increment, usually at least 10% on our receipt and TESTING the product ourselves, just in case they fucked the dog in some way regardless.

On top of that, we buy insurance for shipments on the water, because ships DO sink, get hijacked by hungry Somalis, blow up, throw all the category 1 containers overboard when there is a fire onboard & etc.

[Edited on 5-1-2018 by Bert]

Rapopart’s Rules for critical commentary:

1. Attempt to re-express your target’s position so clearly, vividly and fairly that your target says: “Thanks, I wish I’d thought of putting it that way.”
2. List any points of agreement (especially if they are not matters of general or widespread agreement).
3. Mention anything you have learned from your target.
4. Only then are you permitted to say so much as a word of rebuttal or criticism.

Anatol Rapoport was a Russian-born American mathematical psychologist (1911-2007).

DaftStrategery
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 Quote: Originally posted by Bert Additionally, if you end up with a kilo of something that is NOT (a platinum group metal) chloride, how are you going to pursue whoever in China burned you? We deal with China a good bit. If you don't go there and meet the people, see the specific product you want, hash out a deal the Chinese are happy with and then have someone knowledgable who YOU pay watch the loading to ensure that is what will be shipped , things happen.

Yes, as an EE that's designed many products, key parts of which pretty much had to be assembled in China, I am well aware of the, shall we say, cultural differences at work here. I highly recommend a book titled "Poorly Made in China" for a good explanation of these differences.

Or maybe you are suggesting starting out with a much smaller order, say 10g or 100g?
Bert

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If they won't send you a sample at quoted rate + shipping, fuck 'em.

Rapopart’s Rules for critical commentary:

1. Attempt to re-express your target’s position so clearly, vividly and fairly that your target says: “Thanks, I wish I’d thought of putting it that way.”
2. List any points of agreement (especially if they are not matters of general or widespread agreement).
3. Mention anything you have learned from your target.
4. Only then are you permitted to say so much as a word of rebuttal or criticism.

Anatol Rapoport was a Russian-born American mathematical psychologist (1911-2007).

DaftStrategery
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 Quote: Originally posted by Bert If they won't send you a sample at quoted rate + shipping, fuck 'em.

Yeah, that is SOP when dealing with China. And you are dead-on about them only caring as much about what they send you as you care about it yourself. So if you go in asking for the cheapest price and don't bother to check up on them (or even monitor them the entire time) then you get a sack of reddish-brown dirt instead of PdCl2.

Bert

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Mood: " I think we are all going to die. I think that love is an illusion. We are flawed, my darling".

They will say it to your face: "Quality control is the BUYERS responsibility".

Rapopart’s Rules for critical commentary:

1. Attempt to re-express your target’s position so clearly, vividly and fairly that your target says: “Thanks, I wish I’d thought of putting it that way.”
2. List any points of agreement (especially if they are not matters of general or widespread agreement).
3. Mention anything you have learned from your target.
4. Only then are you permitted to say so much as a word of rebuttal or criticism.

Anatol Rapoport was a Russian-born American mathematical psychologist (1911-2007).

Reboot
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 Quote: Originally posted by DaftStrategery and some of the results were a bit alarming as it seems PdCl2 is used to make drugs.

I wouldn't worry about it. It's not a Listed or otherwise regulated chemical in the US. The metal plating, jewelry, and photo folks buy most of it I think.
DaftStrategery
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Quote: Originally posted by Reboot
 Quote: Originally posted by DaftStrategery and some of the results were a bit alarming as it seems PdCl2 is used to make drugs.

I wouldn't worry about it. It's not a Listed or otherwise regulated chemical in the US. The metal plating, jewelry, and photo folks buy most of it I think.

That's one showstopper out of the way, then. Even if you aren't up to no good, you still don't want the feds kicking in your door and shooting your dog.

Now back to the main question... most of the really interesting papers I am finding on the recovery of Pd from PdCl2 are behind paywalls, but reading the abstracts I have zeroed in on two frontrunners:

Electrowinning

and

Pd Recovery using Sodium Formate

Surely there must be a reasonable way of converting PdCl2 back to Pd - I mean, isn't aqua regia used to extract the PGMs from catalytic converters, and aren't the PGMs then in the form of chloride (or is it nitrate?) salts?

SWIM
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I don't see why you're worried about making palladium out of it.

PdCl2 is fetching $40 US per gram on Ebay right now. Just buy a bunch of little bottles and a scale.$34 profit per gram is probably less work for the money than refining palladium in the lab would be, unless you're going to work on a large scale.

The problem with quotes on the internet is that it's hard to determine their authenticity. -Abraham Lincoln.
DaftStrategery
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 Quote: Originally posted by SWIM I don't see why you're worried about making palladium out of it. PdCl2 is fetching \$40 US per gram on Ebay right now.

Bah, that's no fun... also, now that I know it has some nefarious uses I'd rather not be fingered as a supplier when some snot-nosed brat gets taken down by the DEA.

But no, I'm not planning on doing this on an industrial scale, or as anything more than a sheer challenge with the possibility of a bit more of a payoff in the end than, say, climbing a mountain.

This is sciencemadness.org, correct? Not sciencesoberandrationalandnofun.org... or has my browser been compromised with a stealth page redirector?
Cryolite.
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I mean, PdCl2 has plenty of legitimate uses too (precursor to Pd/C, palladium complexes, etc). I've bought gram quantities of palladium in the past specifically to convert to palladium carbon. Sure, it can be used for Wacker oxidation of safrole to methylenedioxyphenylacetone, but 1) safrole is now basically impossible to get unless you own a sassafras farm, 2) formic acid + hydrogen peroxide is known to do that transformation too, and 3) converting palladium to palladium chloride is easy enough. It's somewhat unfair to write away the whole chemical as evil in this light.
SWIM
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Here's a thought: If you buy this PdCl2 for next to nothing and make palladium out of it you could sell it back to the manufacturer at 1/2 the spot price. (you'd make money, and they'd be getting palladium cheaper than they could anywhere else)

Then they could make more PdCl2 out of it and be back where they started except you'd have some of their cash.

So why not explain this to them and ask them to just send you the cash and save everybody the effort?

Big savings on postage and reagents too.

The problem with quotes on the internet is that it's hard to determine their authenticity. -Abraham Lincoln.
aga
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Excellent thinking there SWIM.

Totally unworkable, but still excellent.

Alternatively, work for a living, or gamble.

Madness is thinking i'm not drunk.
DaftStrategery
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 Quote: Originally posted by SWIM Here's a thought: If you buy this PdCl2 for next to nothing and make palladium out of it you could sell it back to the manufacturer at 1/2 the spot price. (you'd make money, and they'd be getting palladium cheaper than they could anywhere else).

Sigh...

No one wants to talk about the chemistry, just the business prospects.

The premise sounds absurd when you put it that way, and it is if you were to try to sell the Pd back to a company in China, but that's not the idea; Pd is worth way more here than it is China, for many of the same reasons why building an iPhone here would double or triple its price, or why you could rent a mansion in Topeka, Kansas for what a modest apartment goes for in NYC or San Francisco.

Now, if the Chinese have to buy Pd from the London Metals Exchange at the current spot price then this idea is totally impractical, but if they are digging it out of the ground along with all the other valuable heavy metals they practically have a monopoly on now then their cost may very well be a fraction of ours, even on the scrap market.

But all of this is theoretically irrelevant on a forum supposedly dedicated to amateur chemistry/science. Quit trying to save me from bad economic decisions and instead help me avoid bad chemistry decisions!

RogueRose
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Quote: Originally posted by DaftStrategery
Quote: Originally posted by Reboot
 Quote: Originally posted by DaftStrategery and some of the results were a bit alarming as it seems PdCl2 is used to make drugs.

I wouldn't worry about it. It's not a Listed or otherwise regulated chemical in the US. The metal plating, jewelry, and photo folks buy most of it I think.

That's one showstopper out of the way, then. Even if you aren't up to no good, you still don't want the feds kicking in your door and shooting your dog.

Now back to the main question... most of the really interesting papers I am finding on the recovery of Pd from PdCl2 are behind paywalls, but reading the abstracts I have zeroed in on two frontrunners:

Electrowinning

and

Pd Recovery using Sodium Formate

Surely there must be a reasonable way of converting PdCl2 back to Pd - I mean, isn't aqua regia used to extract the PGMs from catalytic converters, and aren't the PGMs then in the form of chloride (or is it nitrate?) salts?

Attachment: Electrowinning of palladium using a modified cyclone reactor kim2002.pdf (209kB)