Anyone Want To Try To Use My Old Credit Card?

Thread Starter

MrAl

Joined Jun 17, 2014
7,604
This is sort of a joke but it is really about ways to destroy an old credit card.

In the photo, you can see that the heat gun combined with the Dremel tool with sanding drum works wonders.
The other card i did a while back only needed the heat gun, the lettering became unreadable even though it was pressure stamped into the card plastic, but this one was more stubborn it had to be ground off with the Dremel.
It does a good job only takes about 5 minutes. The card comes out both unreadable and badly warped due to the heat but does not start smoking due to the temperature not being too excessive, and the chip gets ground down to fine particles.
Note the black parts of the photo are not burn marks just the way the camera rendered some reflective parts.

OldCreditCard_4938b.jpg
 
Just cut 'em up so no piece has anything useful on it, then spread the pieces among this week's trash, a can in another room that gets dumped more rarely, the recycle bin, a trash can in the basement that won't be emptied for a month, etc.
Also, don't destroy the old card until you're sure the new card works, has your name spelled correctly (been there, done that).
For the question you didn't ask -- what to do with an old hard drive. Drill 3/8" holes through it. Then just put it in the trash.
 

SamR

Joined Mar 19, 2019
2,134
what to do with an old hard drive. Drill 3/8" holes through it. Then just put it in the trash.
Due to proprietary information being on corporate ones, I used a large magnetic tape degausser on them before trashing. We also had several huge electromagnets on the plant that did a great job on the credit cards in your wallet and the watch on your arm if you got too close to them.
 

Thread Starter

MrAl

Joined Jun 17, 2014
7,604
Hello again,

Yes i know people cut theirs up sometimes too and i have done that in the distant past, but that requires cutting them up in to thin slivers and that isnt that easy either. But the method i described here is not hard to do if you have a heat gun and Dremel tool and it is kind of fun :)
When the card starts to soften it warps too it's funny to watch. Soft molten plastic does not hold its shape very well at all. Then after all the stuff is ground off, you can still cut it up if you want to for another measure of protection although there is no way anyone can rad any useful info off of the card after the heating and grinding.
After having done this more recent card though, i would recommend grinding first heating second, because it is hard to grind a card that is bent into a "C" shape it's easier to grind a flat card. The heavy duty sanding drums that you can get for Dremel tools works very fast too one or two passes over the area to be removed.
But again i guarantee it is a lot more fun than cutting it up :)
 

Thread Starter

MrAl

Joined Jun 17, 2014
7,604
Does microwaving a credit card do a good job?
Hi,

Interesting idea, i would think it would heat up the chip and destroy it and the chip might melt part of the card as it heated up. However, the card number is stamped into the plastic which makes one side have raised lettering and the other side sunken lettering so i am not sure if it would do much for that part. Not sure how it would affect any magnetic strip though either. It might destroy it but i dont know for sure.

It is recommended not to burn the card though because it gives off noxious chemicals. I guess they mean using a flame to burn it. The heat gun does not cause that problem unless maybe you put it on high and leave it for a long time. The low setting on mine 500 watts seems to work ok.

I dont know if anyone else got one yet but now we have the "tap and go" credit cards. In stores that have the machines to support that feature, all you have to do is tap the card on the front of hte machine and it registers the transaction. It works really nice, but so far there were two places i went that did not support that feature; one machine was not working all the way and the other machine just did not support that yet. It's nice because you dont have to slide the card in.
I guess it reads the new kind of chip or something. THAT chip would definitely have to be completely destroyed in order to decommission it :)
 

Thread Starter

MrAl

Joined Jun 17, 2014
7,604
At my age, they're falling like flies.
Oh yes i understand it gets weird when you get older. A friend of mine is only 58 and is ALWAYS talking about death. For me i just live as if i am going to live forever except when there are practical aspects to consider like what would happen to someone ELSE if i died suddenly.

But getting back to the card destruction, i also know people put them in some electric shredders but only the good quality ones that say they can do cards.

Oh i almost forgot too, i have a METAL card that does not burn or melt. I guess i'll have to grind that one down to nothing when it comes time to get rid of it.
 
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