Collecting Pallets

March 4th, 2013 by Shane Petersen Leave a reply »
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Me and my buddy worked at this factory that was designed to “convert” printing press blankets. Meaning we cut them to specific sizes and shipped them off. We also sold other items related to the field, such as barrels of chemicals. These chemicals were delivered to us in giant shipping trucks on shipping pallets. These pallets are those wooden crates that are constructed to be lifted by fork lifts. We had a trailer that was collecting pallets beside it, stacking up very high, with several stacks.

Pallets Delivered Every Day!

So we’d work and these barrels and boxes of chemicals would be delivered to us almost daily, along with rolls of the printing press blankets. We’d unload it all and then just stack the pallets up on the side of the trailer we kept the chemicals in. I didn’t really catch on until way after the fact, but these random people would always come by in an old beat up pick-up truck and ask if they could have our pallets. My boss’ stock answer was always “That’s fine, just leave us three good ones.” They’d load the pallets up and then be on their way.

Collecting Pallets for What Reason?

So why were these guys all desperate to collect our pallets? This wasn’t clear to me for a long time. There was this place way down the road I used to like to take my laundry to because they had huge five load washers and dryers. I’d drive down there and pass this place that had tons of pallets stacked up.

They were nice, clean pallets, but then I eventually noticed the dirty, beat-down pallets in another area of their stock yard. That’s when I finally saw the sign. They accepted used pallets, and would pay out three, four, or five dollars per pallet depending on its shape and quality! I guess they found it cheaper to repair them than to purchase brand new lumber and smack together their own pallets. They still have to do the labor of cutting it and sizing it and nailing it.

Collecting Used Pallets For Cash!

These guys would stack pallets up in the back of that truck way higher than the roof of the truck. Then they’d strap it down and drive it off to the pallet factory. I’m guaranteeing they were carrying off twenty pallets a shot, and could probably pull this off twice, if not three times in a Saturday in a big city. Once you get the connections and know the spots, you could probably make this happen pretty quick. Figure you take 50 pallets, worth on average three bucks. That’s $150 in one day easy. If you got four bucks per pallet that’d be $200. What a deal! If you have a truck and know the industrial zoned area well enough, you could make this happen for sure! Heck, you could ride through two or three times a week, store them at your house, and possibly pull down another $500 a week! Consider it as a weekend job!

About the author

Shane Petersen Shane Petersen is a programmer, an engineer, an entrepreneur, but above all, a great husband and father. It's Shane's goal to gain financial independence and it's his pleasure to share his ideas as he discovers, explores and invents so others can follow in his foot steps. You can find him on and , feel free to interact with him there.