• Report: #430479

Complaint Review: Garfield Refining Company

  • Submitted: Tue, March 03, 2009
  • Updated: Fri, February 01, 2013

  • Reported By:Anonymous North Carolina
Garfield Refining Company
810 East Cayuga Street Philadelphia, Pennsylvania U.S.A.

Garfield Refining Company Offered me $300 for $1200 worth of gold / silver? PLEASE READ! PROTECT YOURSELF! Philadelphia Pennsylvania

*Consumer Comment: sorry about bothering you

*Consumer Comment: Scam for Gold

*Author of original report: Response to John (Dentist)

*Consumer Comment: Angry people often defend the undefendable.

*Consumer Comment: Still Find Garfield Refining Fair Payments

*Author of original report: Just the kind of response I expected.

*Consumer Comment: This guy is angry, not rational or well informed.

*Consumer Comment: My dealings with Garfield have been satisfactory

*General Comment: Ripped off too

*UPDATE Employee: Not how we do business

*UPDATE Employee: Rebuttal to Anonymous Complaint

*Consumer Comment: Garfield has gone downhill. Better off dealing with Midwest refiners.

*Consumer Comment: Garfield has gone downhill. Better off dealing with Midwest refiners.

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I was told by a friend who used to own a local Pawn Shop that Garfield Refinery was a dependable place to send your scrap gold to for converting to cash. I had already taken my gold to a local pawn shop and was told they would pay $11.00 a gram for 14 Karat gold. I called Garfield Refining Company, and they said they would pay me $16.21 per gram to individuals for 14 Karat gold AFTER their small refining fee. I was pleased to see they would pay this much. I tested my gold, weighed it, and calculated I had AT LEAST $856.00 worth of gold according to their quote, and I also sent in over 2 pounds of sterling silver (with an approximate value of $400.00). When the check arrived, it was for $302.00!!!

I immediately called, and was told it would be TWO DAYS before they could pull my information to see if there was a mistake. I was also told "Perhaps the items you thought were gold were actually gold plated." Again, all of this gold was tested twice by myself and the local pawn shop before sending it in! When this didn't work, they told me perhaps they could try to give me a better OFFER two days from now! I was also told "perhaps you should have included a detailed list of what you sent us and what you had already been offered for the items...this way, we could see if our company could match or beat that quote." **I told them I was quoted $16.21 per gram by THEIR company BEFORE sending it in!** Their "detailed report" accompanying the check stated "Gold--$165.00; Silver--$137.00." No details such as weights, any non-precious metals found, etc. I asked them on the phone "How much did my metals weigh?" They would NOT tell me! I just told them I was sending the check back to them. They still tried to get me to wait until two days later (this would have made me pass the 10 day guarantee date, and by default, I would have had no choice but to take the $302.00!)

I returned the check, and received melted blobs of what "looks" like gold and silver. Now I have no clue what percentage of gold vs alloy I have, or what percentage of silver vs alloy! What in the world can I do with this now! Send it off to another refinery??? I DON'T THINK SO!! I would have been better off to have kept my gold and sold it locally. I am glad of one thing....that I do not belong to a company who reaps their rewards by preying on the elderly and those who desperately need any money offered to them. If that's what it takes for this company to get ahead in life, I don't see how they can sleep at night knowing that it all comes back to them in the end.

58chevy348
Anonymous, North Carolina
U.S.A.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 03/03/2009 05:50 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Garfield-Refining-Company/Philadelphia-Pennsylvania-19124/Garfield-Refining-Company-Offered-me-300-for-1200-worth-of-gold-silver-PLEASE-READ-P-430479. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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REBUTTALS & REPLIES:
2Author 11Consumer 0Employee/Owner
Updates & Rebuttals

#1 Consumer Comment

sorry about bothering you

AUTHOR: john - (United States of America)

I do not know why I spent so much time rebutting your comments, I am sorry if I caused you more distress.

I just sent some metal to Garfield and I think I will do like you did and get my metal back and try the same gold place you tried and I will let you know how it goes.

Really, I am sorry should not have given you so much grief

john
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#2 Consumer Comment

Scam for Gold

AUTHOR: Lekaimadh - (USA)

Man cant you see that the gold trade thing is a rip off. From the beginning it was a big hype to steal from people. Put your gold in envelope and send it to us we will send you money LOL that alone should tell you not to do it. 
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#3 Author of original report

Response to John (Dentist)

AUTHOR: 58chevy348 - (U.S.A.)

This is for the last poster John (Dentist)......all I can say is, I'm glad you're a dentist and not an optometrist, because you obviously can't see!  I clearly stated in my last post that I got $885 for the EXACT SAME hunk of melted gold / silver mixture that Garfield offered me $302 for!  Can I state it any more clearly than that?  If that's not an attempt at a rip-off, then I don't know how else to define it.  Garfield was going to profit an EXTRA $500 plus off of me, and I do not think that's being very fair. 

I know they have to make money, otherwise, they would not be in business; however, this goes beyond their "fair share."  The name of the local gold / silver dealer that gave me that $885 is Tri City Exchange.  Because the precious metals had been melted down by Garfield, they had to send it in for analysis at the refinery they deal with in NYC.  No, I do not have the name of that refinery.  All I can tell you is this.....I sent a mixture of 10K, 14K, 18K, and sterling silver to Garfield.  They mailed me a check for $302.  I refused the payment and sent it back.  I got the melted metal and received a check for $885 from another company. 

What makes me an expert in precious metals?  Well, I never claimed to be an expert at any time during my posts, but I am VERY knowledgeable when it comes to gold vs gold plate, rolled gold, etc.  I have multiple testing methods and materials which I use, and in this case, even got a second opinion before sending the metals in.  But no, I never claimed to be an "expert."  I think YOU are the "expert"------an expert at putting words in people's mouths. 

Angry?  You're darn right it angered me.  I think most people in this situation would be angry.  (By the way, just so you know......I do not appreciate your condescending tone.  I am not some moron who walked in off of the street with a gold necklace I bought in the parking lot of a flea market).

Furthermore, concerning your comment about Garfield sending the metals back to me warrants them being fair.........Well, sir, it takes MUCH more than that to convince me they are being fair.  Had they NOT sent my metals back, that would have been criminal.  There's a HUGE difference between being FAIR and STEALING.  I never once said they stole metals from me, and never even considered that possibility.  My entire point is the FAIRNESS.  Garfield can place any value they want to on metals sent in to them, but again, I was smart enough to know what a low-ball offer it was.  THE PROOF IS IN THE EXTRA $500+ THAT WENT INTO MY POCKET!!!
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#4 Consumer Comment

Angry people often defend the undefendable.

AUTHOR: john - (United States of America)

I am the dentist that defended Garfield, I am not working for Garfield.  As far as I can tell, until you have the metal evaluated chemically you cannot really know what you have, especially if you have a mixed batch of jewelery. 

So tell us, what types of material did you submit and what types of tests did you do?  What makes you so expert in evaluating raw metal and if you are experienced in the field, why are you asking around where to process metal?  How much did you "friend at the pawnshop" offer you, that you went to Garfield instead of your friend?  Oh and yes, who gave you twice as much for your melted lump of mixed metal returned to you by Garfield?

I am glad you pointed out that Garfield did return your metal when you refused their offer, so actually they did not rip you off, unless you assume they skimmed off the good stuff and sent you less expensive metal or equal value.  Of course that would be an assumption, nothing you can substantiate.  If they were cheats, why would they send you back metal worth so much more?

There is a website where employees can tell what they think of their employers and many of the complaints on that site are based on employees reporting unfair or illegal activity in the work place.  Dispite a long history, not one employee made claims of illegal or unfair practices by Garfield.  The web site is www.glassdoor.com, a well know know place for whistle blowers.  Do you have any facts about lawsuits, investigations criminal charges associated with Garfield Refining?

I find it easy to assume that you are misinformed and bent on revenge.  I find it hard to assume that Garfield Refining are cheaters after they have made a long reputable history of service in a field that is so much based on trust.  Do you have information of Garfield changing ownership?  They don't get customers with big advertising or bold claims or emotional trickery, they make their business doing repeat business with business professionals that repeatedly have to make these transactions.  Your arguments have been less than convincing and your anger readily apparent.  Angry people often defend the undefendable argument.
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#5 Consumer Comment

Still Find Garfield Refining Fair Payments

AUTHOR: USAyinpa - (United States of America)

Since I left my last comment, I have sent several of my auctioneer friends to Garfield. All have been treated fairly (in their own estimations). I am getting ready to send them another small shipment of gold and silver scrap so I guess I'll see too if I am ripped or treated fair.

Just a comment.  If you got more than you expected from another refiner or payer (after you said you wouldn't by the way) than perhaps you could do us all a favor and let us in on who you used. We'd all like to get more for our scrap. If not than perhaps it's time for us to all move on and let bygones be bygones after all your ripoff is over three years old and we've had dealings with Garfield in the last six months. Best regards.
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#6 Author of original report

Just the kind of response I expected.

AUTHOR: 58chevy348 - (U.S.A.)

So, Garfield Refining replied to my initial complaint with the following comment:  "This guy is angry, not rational or well informed."  Yep, exactly what I expected their response would be.  Well, I hate to inform you, but I am VERY well informed when it comes to the trade of precious metals.  Angry?  OF COURSE!  Who wouldn't be when you offer 25% of what you should have offered, and you go ahead and melt down my items in order to cover up your lies.  Just to clear things up. I took the melted hunk of metal to a reputable gold dealer who sent it in to a respectable refinery in New York City.  I was given $885.00 for the same hunk you offered me $302 for (and that's after the middle man took their cut)!  Enough said.  At least I am one person you didn't jerk around.  It truly scares me to think of how many unfortunate people have fallen victim to your bogus offers. 
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#7 Consumer Comment

This guy is angry, not rational or well informed.

AUTHOR: john - (United States of America)

I can see you are angry and were hoping for more money.  My concern with your comments is that you tested if it were gold and you calculated what you thought it was worth.  Until a metal is melted, the components separated and evaluated scientifically, all your calculation can be no better than an estimate.  If you were a professional in the field with equipment and experience you may guess pretty good.  If you are a deprerate elderly person (as you described yourself)  who has limited experience selling precious metals, I bet your best guess could be less than acrurate, yet you put your numbers down as if they are certian.  That makes your arguement less believable.  Virtually no gold Jewlery is pure gold, all jewlery is made of alloys of metal that contain a percentage of actual gold, weighing will not do.  If the gold carot rating is stamped in the piece you can calculate the amount of gold from the gross wieght of the metal.  Even gold coins are usually alloys of gold, not pure gold.

I am a dentist and dental lab owner with 25 years experience in salvaging mixed batches of salvaged dental gold of unknown composition.  I also hate that we have to trust the refiner.  This is a company that has won and maintained a long history of trust in dental field.  Which place is best and which is honest is nothing is a difficult task.   All I know is that a lot of people with years of recycling as part of their business have continued to us this company while other refiners came and went away.  Lately the field is full of small start-ups and investors who  just sell to refiners. For example, your friend with the pawnshop, I am guessing that he is a better judge of a refiner than you based on experience in that field.  You skipped the middle man and were working with the refiner directly, which is also what I recommend because your payment is calculated by analysis and calculation, not an estimate by an commissioned employee at a booth in a mall scratching the metal agains a black stone or something.

I know that you are angry but think rationally about my points and consider that maybe you cannot defend your calculations well enough to say such bad things about someone else.  I think you should consider removing you post, maybe you were partially wrong and maybe you are wrongly hurting some older gentleman running an honest business. 
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#8 Consumer Comment

My dealings with Garfield have been satisfactory

AUTHOR: USAyinpa - (United States of America)

I can only say that on both occasions I have dealt with this company, the results have been what I expected and fair. I sent about $200 in silver and $200 in gold in by my own calculations and low and behold that was what I got back less about $23 for processing.

On a previous occasion, I sent in silver when it was around $16 per ounce and got back pretty much what I expected.  I cannot speak to other individuals experiences but my own have been fair minded. And yes customer feedback could be better on their part because I also found the gold silver reports with the check a little terse and confusing. good overall however
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#9 General Comment

Ripped off too

AUTHOR: saditrustedgarfield - (United States of America)

I am sorry you got ripped off too. A very expensive lesson. Wish i researched online before I left my valuable jewelry there for minimal cash and got nothing but a lie that it was not real 14K. I was cheated of about $850 by Joel
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#10 UPDATE Employee

Not how we do business

AUTHOR: Joshua - (Virgin Islands (US))

We are a precious metals refiner that has been in business for 119 years. Any quotes we give over the phone are approximations based on the customers description of their material. We tell our customers that their material will be melted and assayed and that payment is based on assay. Assays are conducted in our fully equipped laboratory using the latest in spectrographic technology.This person reports that he had material tested, presumably by acid test or an electronic tester. A test is not an assay, but rather a rough approximation of purity. It cannot detect gold-plate or gold-filled, unless properly administered, and even then, not accurately.I cannot comment on this person's case, because he chooses to remain anonymous. I can, however, state unequivocally that we do not do business as he describes. We have over 500,000 customers nationwide, a large percentage of which are precious metals professionals. We would not survive long doing what he describes. Furthermore, we do not make second offers. We will re-assay material in some cases, and in the rare case of a variation in lab results, adjust our offer. This may take an extra day or two, but the terms of our guarantee are not affected. Any customer who requests it can get their material back within ten days of payment. It will be in processed form, because an accurate assay requires melting so a homogeneous sample can be taken for analysis. This is the accepted method throughout the industry.


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#11 UPDATE Employee

Rebuttal to Anonymous Complaint

AUTHOR: Joshua - (Virgin Islands (US))

We are a precious metals refiner that has been in business for 118 years. Any quotes we give over the phone are approximations based on the customers description of their material. We tell our customers that their material will be melted and assayed and that payment is based on assay. Assays are conducted in our fully equipped laboratory using the latest in spectrographic technology.

This person reports that he had material tested, presumably by acid test or an electronic tester. A test is not an assay, but rather a rough approximation of purity. It cannot detect gold-plate or gold-filled, unless properly administered, and even then, not accurately.

I cannot comment on this person's case, because he chooses to remain anonymous. I can, however, state unequivocally that we do not do business as he describes. We have over 500,000 customers nationwide, a large percentage of which are precious metals professionals. We would not survive long doing what he describes. Furthermore, we do not make second offers. We will re-assay material in some cases, and in the rare case of a variation in lab results, adjust our offer. This may take an extra day or two, but the terms of our guarantee are not affected. 

Any customer who requests it can get their material back within ten days of payment. It will be in processed form, because an accurate assay requires melting so a homogeneous sample can be taken for analysis. This is the accepted method throughout the industry.

I might point out, in passing, that I first saw this complaint posted on a page surrounded by advertisements for a competitor.
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#12 Consumer Comment

Garfield has gone downhill. Better off dealing with Midwest refiners.

AUTHOR: Alan - (U.S.A.)

I've had a similar experience to original poster, only I've dealt with Garfield several times in the past. About two years ago Garfield really started playing games with their assay and fees......my last sale to them in 2008 was very similar to the original posters in that I sent a large quanity of sterling/gold to them and their "assay" value was around 35% of what it should have been for items which were weighed/acid tested prior to submittal (and items identical to those we submitted to them before). Garfield is now just as bad as the Goldkit companies and I wouldn't deal with them in the future. Like I said, we've sent material to Garfield several times in the past, but it seems that they have recently become much less generous in their assay/valuation.

We're now dealing with Midwest Refineries and very happy with them. You may want to check them out.
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#13 Consumer Comment

Garfield has gone downhill. Better off dealing with Midwest refiners.

AUTHOR: Alan - (U.S.A.)

I've had a similar experience to original poster, only I've dealt with Garfield several times in the past. About two years ago Garfield really started playing games with their assay and fees......my last sale to them in 2008 was very similar to the original posters in that I sent a large quanity of sterling/gold to them and their "assay" value was around 35% of what it should have been for items which were weighed/acid tested prior to submittal (and items identical to those we submitted to them before). Garfield is now just as bad as the Goldkit companies and I wouldn't deal with them in the future. Like I said, we've sent material to Garfield several times in the past, but it seems that they have recently become much less generous in their assay/valuation.

We're now dealing with Midwest Refineries and very happy with them. You may want to check them out.
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