Tag: scrap yard


First of all we have to say that scrap is being processed mainly because of the necessity to reduce its size for transportation from the scrap yard where it is collected to the steel mill or foundry where it is used. Once scrap reaches the scrap yard where it is processed it is transformed into a product and with smelters requiring more and more a high quality product specific equipment and processes are required in order to obtain the highest possible value. The value is defined by the purity , size and density of the product sold to steel mills and foundries.

There are three different ways to process scrap metal and these can be summarized as follows:

  • Scrap baling
  • Scrap shearing
  • Scrap shredding

In this article we will focus on the first two.


Baling can be divided into two subcategories, high density baling and low density baling, also called logging or soft baling.

Logging is a process that involves ELV, End Of Live Vehicles, or cars. Also it is related to scrap which contains impurities or various un-separated materials. These are baled into a low density log or soft bale. Logs are mainly prepared to reduce volume of scrap while increasing its density for cost effective transportation to a shredder where a further process is required in order to properly prepare scrap for the melting process (refer to the shredding section of this document).

Below a picture of a typical scrap baler – logger

Schrottpressen - Karossenpressen - Metallpressen - Schrottverarbeitung

 G.P.S. mobile ELV and light scrap baler

Baling is a process that involves by and large clean and homogeneous scrap (like cuttings, cans, litho sheets, etc.). Bales are typically produced in a three or two compression baler and have a very high density.  The steel mills and foundries are very happy with this product as it has optimum density and contains clean material.


The most versatile way of processing scrap is by means of a scrap shear. These machines can be used to process a variety of different scrap sorts and are able to vary also the quality and type of product produced. Scrap shear balers for instance will allow scrap shearing but will also bale and log scrap efficiently. The shear can be used to produce various lengths from an average 80-60 cm to a foundry grade of 30-40 cm.

Shears are indicated usually by their shear force, thus a 550 ton shear is a scrap shear that will generate 550 tons of shearing capacity.

GPS Scrap Shears are ranging from 550 tons to 1200 tons and have a charging box from 5 meter to 8 meter in length. They can also be equipped with pre-loading tables  which guarantee higher daily performance of the shear.

See below a picture of a typical scrap shear baler combination.


We will dedicate more in-depth articles to the single scrap processing possibilities in the near future.

Marco Garuti


If you are here reading this Blog, then you’re either looking for recycling machinery or (like us) love machinery.

The task of selecting recycling machinery to do a job is always very difficult. You’re never sure until some time after any machine is installed if you made a good choice or bad choice.

There is a lot more to machines that meets the eye.  Hunting for a good machine that’s right for you can be tricky to say the least. So much “know how” of the manufacturer does not appear in any brochure or machine description. This type of information is kept fairly secret and it’s normally the accumulation of years of hard work making constant improvements to machines. It’s the result of sending machines to site and then monitoring how they run.  We all want to be better than our competitors so even if they ( our competitors)  tie us to a chair and rip our fingernails out we’ll never tell them how we solved a problem and why we are better than they are…

Recycling Machinery by GPS Processing Solutions

With recycling machinery, the bad news is that it is even worse than in other industries because the problem is always the scrap.  So for example if we were transporting sand through a machinery the sand is fairy uniform.. Now lets think about  scrap. No two loads of scrap fed to a machine are ever the same and so it’s hard to foresee how a machine will handle scrap..

What type of recycling machinery do you really need?

The only way to answer the question..”what machine is needed for our types of scrap” is to  know, having witnessed a particular  machine’s performance on site with various scrap types..

Buyers who invest in a low priced recycling machinery, who went for a deal that seemed too good to be true (as their first ever machine normally)  often end up with burnt fingers. The machines don’t perform, they either don’t have the hoped for capacity or they are unreliable or the product they make is not very good quality..

All above mentioned problems are like a cancer to any company and should be avoided. However without experience it’s hard to get the job of selecting any machine right. So if you are considering machinery, the cheapest (no matter how tempting the price is)  is often not the best and in most cases it is the worst.  Why? Because a badly manufactured or badly conceived machine will never perform, and they are almost impossible to put right..

Check the running cost

Don’t just look at the price tag, also consider the running cost, here is an example:

If you are spending for example 15 Euro per ton to shear (with the wrong machine, and this is a common figure for badly made machines) when you could be spending just 7 Euro per ton (with the right machine) then every 100,000 tons you processed you’ve paid and extra 800,000 in processing costs (800,000 will buy you a new heavy duty shear!) But it doesn’t stop there, shearing can cost as little as 4 or 5 per ton. So is the cheap machine robbing you of your profit, and your future? And this means that all the time the machine is being used on site it will be holding back your business from growing  Instead it’s like a weight the company has to carry..

Unfortunately this happens more than scrap companies care to admit.  But it’s noticeable the second time a company wants to buy a machine, they may still not know for sure what they want, but the are 100% clear what they don’t want.. It’s a hard and painful way to learn for clients in our industry  We do our best to give the best assistance we can, sometimes we know that “saying it like it is” to use a well known expression doesn’t win you any friends and potentially will lose us orders but in the long run it’s better to lose an order than sell the wrong machine to a client.

Pierluigi Sambolino

Why do we do it?

Sometimes I ask myself why I work in this industry. Let’s be honest, at a dinner party or social occasion, when I’m asked what I do, and I reply referring to scrap metal processing or scrap machinery, normally there aren’t any follow on questions, the conversation moves on to more interesting “other” things.

For some reason scrap is not generally interesting.

For sure the scrap metal processing industry seen from outside has an image problem.  And yet the people I have met who work in it for the most part are real characters and some are really great businessmen and great people too, these are people I listen to,  respect and try my best to learn from.   So, not just me.. but also you reading this, why do you do it?   How did you get into scrap metal  recycling? What is it about scrap metal and scrap metal processing that keeps us here day in day out?

My particular interest is  scrap metal processing machinery , things like scrap shear and balers,  gravity feed shears and 1,2 and 3 compression balers and our No.1 best seller, car balers, all of which I find fascinating. I love scrap machinery,  what it does , how it is built, how it breaks and how it’s fixed, anything to do with scrap recycling equipment really.

My start in scrap was from a very early age.

GPS ship breaking - scrap metal processing - scrap recycling equipment - scrap machinery

I used to go to my dad’s Scrap Yard. Mostly to play but also if my luck was in to earn good money too. (picking up nonferrous to fill an oil drum which took all day. I’d get 4 pounds sterling in about 1970 which was big bucks for me!!).  So yes, my dad was a Scrap Man (he’s now 84 and he’s still what I call a Scrap Man). He started as a boy himself in ship breaking and demolition at the age of 14, it was his first real job even though he’d worked almost full time from the age of 8.

A brutal industry.

Ship breaking was quite a brutal industry to be in. It forged his personality, he’d have been a tough guy no matter what he did. But the Scrap Industry just amplified it. And that somehow got distilled into his parenting approach, so you can forget all about me playing at a Montessori school with kids called Tarquin and Tobias, no we (me and my brother) had scrap yard dogs to play with. I can tell you a few of them were pretty mean, nasty, hard dogs. And what a great place it was to grow up in. If a car came in I could smash it up… nobody cared!  I found all sorts of things that would explode off the ships which I used to put on the bomb fires and then run for cover!

The scrap yard was full of anything that came off a ship. I could make and build all sorts of contraptions using whatever I found laying around. I think my favorite was the explosions I used to cause with whole cans of easy start spray. One day I threw in so many full cans in one go that after the explosion all that was left was just …. a crater!  I ran for cover (dad wasn’t around that day thank God).

Actually one day dad did fire off a beautiful brass flare gun that came off a vessel, it was amazing. This flare went up very high and had a kind of parachute that kept it aloft. It seemed to burn for ages bright red!!  Dad and me, we were admiring it up there and within 2 minutes we had a search and rescue helicopter hovering over our scrapyard searching for a sinking ship. Oops… Dad ran for cover and after a while the helicopter went and he didn’t get a fine either for wasting the coastguards time. It was silly really because we were on a tidal creek maybe 2 miles inland. Even if your ship had sunk you could have just waited for low tide and walked ashore across the muddy creek.

Can’t see myself doing anything else

I did actually study to work in the construction industry. But somehow I’ve gravitated back to what my dad (and older brother) did all their working lives and now I couldn’t see myself doing anything else. I really like the scrap metal industry and scrap recycling equipment. I’ve met some outstanding excellent people at all levels.  I’ve traveled far and wide across various continents, for me scrap has been and continues to be a great adventure.  I know that what I learnt just from observing my dad has been a good foundation and now  hopefully I’m seen as a reliable trustworthy person the way he was.

Scrap metal processing yards, scrap machinery, the piles of metal, the smoke, the dust, the smells of God knows what toxic substances in the air. The grease and oil mixed with mud are normal to me. As a kid I played in that environment and as an adult dirt doesn’t bother me at all.

For me a scrap yard is a business opportunity and a Rubik’s cube rolled into one. If you lost money today, never mind. Tomorrow you won’t make that mistake again. You got ripped off today, never mind. Next time you’ll look harder. You did a great deal, great! But don’t think it will always be like that. The scrap industry and the scrap itself will test you every day, they will try to knock you down and if you can get up, you’re stronger for it..

Scrap Industry: Where a handshake still counts

The scrap industry seems to have resisted the modern world. It’s still an industry where your handshake counts and your reputation is your calling card and your word is your bond, and if you lose face in this game you won’t go very far.

The scrap metal recycling industry has been a very good schooling for me. I’ve been in contact with it all my life. I feel at home there and I just like it. I found my niche in selling scrap recycling equipment. My feeling is that the scrap metal industry is a bit like the wild west I suppose. Still untamed by boring men in suits. Scrap never gets boring and keeps you on your toes, so at the proverbial dinner party when I get bypassed for being a ruffian accompanied by the associated looks of horror, I just have to laugh to myself and think… “yeah.. who cares what you think anyway? you pussy you..”

Pierluigi Sambolino