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scrap yard scales

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    Chuckvanstinkle started this thread.
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    scrap yard scales

    im a bit new to the whole scrapping thing in terms of a business but i was wondering if anyone could chime in or give some thought towards yards and the accuracy of their scales. i recently dropped off two loads of lead batteries and both times there was a difference from what i had calculated. the first time i had found the weight online from a few different sources. and today when i dropped the second lot off one of the guys helping unload had told me what one of them weighed in at from the day before (confirming the sources online to be accurate). long story short, it seems like i was shorted about 10-7% on my weight. is this something that typically happens? how do you / do you confront a yard discretely if this happens? I'm dealing in the 10's of thousands of pounds range with these batteries so even a slight difference is costing me a lot of money. any help or suggestions would be appreciated.



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    Mechanic688's Avatar
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    I don't know about your state, but here the scales and fuel pumps have to be inspected once a year. If it's too far out of tolerance then it is shut down till it's fixed. Truck scales usually run in 20lb increments. There is a big difference in batteries, Don't know what kind your dealing with. But if it's car/truck batt's then they should run from 32 to 76lb average.
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    armstrt8's Avatar
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    Your dealing with 10's of thousand of pounds and you arent aware of the weight your carrying? I would love to be in your shoes!

    Weight a battery out then multiply it by what you have. If I found out a yard was ripping me off I wouldnt confront them, but I would just simply go to a different yard

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  5. #4
    Chuckvanstinkle started this thread.
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    i did that. that is why i posted this thread. because it is off from what i calculated but instead of running through the yard making a scene i was wondering if there was a proper way of dealing with this

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    Chuckvanstinkle started this thread.
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    how can there be a discrepancy if i had no original weight calculated?

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    Chuckvanstinkle started this thread.
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    ups 140ah 100 pounders. weighed a few myself this evening. 100 lbs is what they weigh.

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    EcoSafe's Avatar
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    Scales involved in interstate commerce are certified by the department of weights and measures or what ever they call it these days, that said, scales are a delicate instrument and the only truly accurate weight is the first one after calibration.

    The batteries are not a precise weight they can vary a few ounces. with the load you cary that could add up. Be careful how you approach this situation. Yes there are crooked scales, scalemen, managers and owners, but they don't last long when the word gets around. Most are upstanding people and would not take kindly at even an inference they are dishonest. The best way to approach this is by asking him/her for help. Explain your situation 99% of the time he /she will be glad to help a new customer with potential.
    Last edited by EcoSafe; 11-20-2014 at 12:17 AM.
    "anyone who thinks scrappin is easy money ain't doin it right!"

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    ...if you're talking about large quantities, maybe some of the cells were dry? I would find a way to weigh your actual load before going in, not just calculate it. Estimating that all batteries of the same type weight the same amount is not proof that a yard shorted you.
    ~You have to start somewhere to get anywhere~

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  12. #9
    Mechanic688's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScrappinRed View Post
    ...if you're talking about large quantities, maybe some of the cells were dry? I would find a way to weigh your actual load before going in, not just calculate it. Estimating that all batteries of the same type weight the same amount is not proof that a yard shorted you.
    If you need a scale, go to your nearest co-op or grain elevator, those are state certified. Get an empty weight first then go back and get a loaded weight. Then you have actual proof if/when you talk to them. I think the scales around here charge around $5. to weigh.

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    armygreywolf's Avatar
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    CAT scale. Usually only a few bucks for a state certified weight.

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    Phantoms001's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mechanic688 View Post
    I don't know about your state, but here the scales and fuel pumps have to be inspected once a year. If it's too far out of tolerance then it is shut down till it's fixed. Truck scales usually run in 20lb increments. There is a big difference in batteries, Don't know what kind your dealing with. But if it's car/truck batt's then they should run from 32 to 76lb average.
    I'm sure in all states if you are using a scale for business it needs to be inspected/certified every year. I don't see the scale as the problem, it would be that it only takes a fraction of a second to add a tare to your weight.

    I would NEVER sell something when I didn't know what I had. You can sell batteries as a flat rate which is easy to figure out or by weight, but I'd surely know what they weighed. If they shorted me I wouldn't sell it.

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  17. #12
    msmoorad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by olddude View Post
    Scales involved in interstate commerce are certified by the department of weights and measures or what ever they call it these days, that said, scales are a delicate instrument and the only truly accurate weight is the first one after calibration.

    The batteries are not a precise weight they can vary a few ounces. with the load you cary that could add up. Be careful how you approach this situation. Yes there are crooked scales, scalemen, managers and owners, but they don't last long when the word gets around. Most are upstanding people and would not take kindly at even an inference they are dishonest. The best way to approach this is by asking him/her for help. Explain your situation 99% of the time he /she will be glad to help a new customer with potential.
    i agree

    be polite
    and do it something like this:
    "excuse me, i just want to clarify something- these batteries are supposed to weigh 100lbs each & ive weighed them at home just to check - they do weigh 100lbs-according to my scale"
    "maybe im making a mistake somewhere, so please explain to me how u get XXlbs on your scale"

    if u can get hold of the manager/owner-that would be better- i think.

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  19. #13
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    Dumping stuff hard on the scales can upset them.
    Most work off a piezo load cell. Google it.

    Dry or wet batterys? Just going off a bunch of numbers in a book is not accurate..

    A local yard (the one I told the guy not to go to as he "will get ripped off") we went too.
    I noticed they would look at the sack of metal, pick it up, move it around, put it down & weight it.
    But there was something weird with their movements....
    Then, one day someone tells us to "make sure the metals on the right hand side of the scales"...
    Why? "Because the left hand side is damaged and weighs 1kg less."

    So, I check it out, sure enough...... its a kg less... And the guy shifts it from right to left, weighs a kg less.
    Did we go there again? guess.
    Someone had smacked into the left corner with the forklift.

    Best thing to do, check your weights first. BTW you are not 'topping off' the batterys with water are you?
    Scrapbuyers will deduct weight if you do that.

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    If you are dealing with a large enough yard, the solution is simple. Weigh on the truck scale going in and out and then weigh the batteries on the non ferrous scale in the shed. Compare the weights. If they do not match ask what causes the difference on certified scales and ask that they honor the heavier weight. I do this with everything except prepared and unprepared steel.

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    There are scales available at most truckstops for a fee. Mike
    "Profit begins when you buy NOT when you sell." {quote passed down to me from a wise man}

    Now go beat the copper out of something, Miked

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    scrap yard scales

    you can always call the county\state department of weights and measures. they will most likely go test the scale if there is a complaint.

    places that sell gravel by the ton should have a scale.....almost anyone that sells by the ton has a truck scale. some farmers even have them.

    most places charge $5-10 for a weight ticket, but I have heard of higher. its best to call ahead instead of just showing up
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  26. #17
    redcrossnj's Avatar
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    There are a lot of reasonable answers to your questions.

    did you have these batteries in another container ( EX. Barrel , pallet, Gaylord etc) ?
    Because if you did the yard may have tarred that weight- basically subtracting a few pounds for each container Etc)

    Also if this is your first time going to that yard . You don't know them and they don't know you. I AM NOT saying you are one. But there are some people who try to "Get one "over on the yard because they think The yard is screwing Them. ( these individuals are a disgrace to the industry but that's another thread). Batteries are one thing that people try to manipulate. I have heard and seen it . they will try to open the terminals and fill them with water etc. Some maybe this yard has had experience's with individuals doing this. SO they proceed with caution with people they don't know . So to be safe when you someone they may not know come in with a truckload of batteries . they just wanted to be safe. Its totally understandable

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    hobo finds's Avatar
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    Auto batteries have water in them, not sure why filling them up would be frowned upon... Cant put sand, rocks or screws though!

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    1956's Avatar
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    The answer is very simple, if you are dealing in the tens of thousands of pounds why would you sell to a scrap yard????? I would find myself a battery refurbisher, the guys that sell used batteries, most yards resell them to these types of places if the are not shipping full trailers, second option call a commercial battery dealer like interstate they have lots of locations all across the USA. they buy batteries also and if they need lead to ship they pay very high prices for the batteries, you know some thing if you guys have a problem in a yard reguarding weights and you haven't got your payment yet, just tell them to reload your scrap back on your truck that will in most cases resolve the problem , If you are not happy selling your material at a yard for what ever reason don't sell it.

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  32. #20
    1956's Avatar
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    refilling battery posts with water would most likely hurt your reputation
    not to mention
    the acid factor
    hope you wear gloves at least.

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