Frequently Asked Questions

A lot depends on legislation but the next step for TranAct is a bank branded debit card. This solution is being used in some yards now. If you can get your customers to use this card for retail purchases, this model works. The merchants pay the transaction fees when the customer uses the card to buy goods. The problem is, Cash-Is-King and peddlers are skeptical about leaving the yard with a card. Also, if you calculate the cost to get cash, the transaction fees add up to much more than running a private ATM. Congress recently calculated that a banks average cost to do cash transactions at an ATM is less than $.50. TranAct’s scrap yard customers and banks own and operate their own high volume financial ATMs and the costs are similar, less than $.50 per transaction. Debit card providers often charge fees to move funds to cards that are $1.00 or more. Most retail ATMs in the US are owned by third parties and do much lower volume than bank machines driving up fees. The average ATM owners surcharge is over $2.50 in the US and the bank interchange charge adds $1.00 or more per cash withdrawal. We are up to $4.50 per transaction now. Most retail and bank ATMs limit daily cash payouts to $300.00 increasing the number of cash transactions. A cost affective debit card solution needs to include an all cash payout option without fees. TranAct’s debit card release will coincide with an ATM that can provide private and bank transactions. Peddler skepticism is hard to overcome but not taking anything away from them will help.

This again will depend on the ATM model that is going to be purchased. Physical requirements for a thru the wall ATM will require a hole where the ATM is going to be placed. Other requirements that either ATM will need include power and network connectivity.

This will remain the same as your current process. You can choose to pay your industrial tickets or group of tickets via your yard management software using cash, checks or ATM.

There are companies that are selling systems that would allow you to pay customers using a prepaid debit card. We are actually developing this option ourselves and may have this solution available down the road. I am not sure what the costs are to implement this sort of solution but one of the obstacles that we have come across are the fees associated with the cards. The end user (your customer) and the card issuer (your company) are responsible for various transaction fees. Really the main argument for using this sort of solution is this; Customers prefer cash. If your competition is paying cash, customers may be more likely to sell their materials to them.

Things such as redundancy, security for large transactions and traffic flow should be considerations for the use of multiple units, but if the number of transactions is consistently exceeding 400 per day, the facility should certainly consider using two terminals.

No, in the scrap industry, companies typically do not charge a transaction fee. Remember, your ATM transactions are private and do not involve any banking networks. I can only think of one company that charges a cash convenience fee to their customers.

Yes, some companies choose to load cash themselves. The maximum amount that a customer could receive from the ATM can be defined in EZcash and within your yard management software. I have noticed that several companies cap the dispense limit at around 2k, but again, this can be determined by your organization. In our professional opinion, the best option is to have a delivery company handle the cash. This is the safest and most secure way to handle your money.

For the software and hardware purchase, make sure the vendor can meet your requirements. An ATM is a fully contained self service device that is designed for outside exposure installation. Cash dispensers can be configured as a self service device but are not fully contained and are designed for office environments. One benefit of being fully contained is you can get one service contract on the entire payout solution. Balancing procedures for cash suppliers and Scale System should be reviewed. An enterprise solutions may be required if more than one device is needed. Due diligence should include good references for experience in this industry. A solution provider should guarantee that the system provided will perform for its intended purpose. Don’t forget to inspect the peddler’s process flow at the ATM; try to avoid entering data for single payout transactions. Local first line, second line and cash suppliers are typically contracted direct with the yard and many options for service providers.

The costs for installation and maintenance fluctuate based on the location and equipment type. Our typical installation is an exterior through the wall ATM like the side of a bank building. Some customers provide a private room and a cash dispenser for large payouts. Behind the counter cash dispensers with cashiers are not used as often as self service configurations. Whether you are putting it in a lobby, through the wall or adding a building the total costs change. NCR ATMs run from $13k to $38k, this range includes refurbished and new ATMs; EZcash is $10k per ATM. A new Arcatech 2600 cash dispenser is around $19k. The transactions themselves are private; there are no usage or transaction fees. TranAct’s precast ATM building sells for $15k plus shipping, power, slab and a cable crane. Our customers typically manage their own rigging for obvious reasons. The required local support include “first line” (cash/paper jams) and “second line” maintenance (hardware failure). Yards can expect to pay around $1,200 each per year for first line maintenance and software support $1,500.00 to $2,500 for second line maintenance. Cash replenishment can be contracted through an armored car company estimated at $70 to $90 per drop or managed locally by yard personnel who would then also do the first line maintenance. The average cost per transaction in a scrap yard works out to be around $.50. Cameras run from $350 to $2,500 plus software and hardware for recording.

We should have a discussion to make this determination. Some of the variables will include: ATM model type (lobby or thru wall), space, and customer flow.

I don’t believe that adding the ATM will drastically affect your insurance premiums. I would recommend speaking with your agent about any actual increases that may occur.

The transaction starts in the scrapyards scrap purchasing software (Scale System). A Scale System is required to calculate the purchase by commodity and weight and finally the dollar amount the customer is to receive. TranAct’s EZcash software is designed to work with any Scale System. When it is time to pay, the Scale System triggers EZcash, securing a barcode that is printed on the customers payment receipt. The customer then scans the receipt at the NCR Financial ATM or cash dispenser. EZcash authorizes the transaction and the ATM dispenses the cash to the customer. The EZcash client monitors the devices and the balancing tools facilitate balancing to the Scale System and the armored car service providers. TranAct’s JPEGger software captures all transaction images from scale to payout for auditing and security.

If the amount of cash you are going through exceeds what the ATM can handle. Keep in mind, the current NCR model we are using has eight cassettes, each of which can hold around two thousand notes each. The typical denominations used would be: 100s or 50s, 20s, 5s, and 1s. Point being, that you can hold quite a bit of cash in one machine. You will hopefully be dealing directly with us and will offer you the best deal we can on the ATM hardware. We normally discount our EZcash software when a level of three or more licenses has been reached.

EZcash software works with: Scrap Dragon, Mayer, Recy, RIMAS (Shared Logic), SAI and ScrapWare. Your software will send the payment information into EZcash and in return EZcash will send a bar code back to your software to be printed on the receipt. The EZcash Monitor can be installed on any computers on your system. The monitor will provide you with real time balance and transaction information, the data can also be exported to Microsoft® Excel.

This is a matter of preference, you could create the payment at the scale if you wish or have the customers go to the cashier window for their receipt. I believe the ATM payments will be accounted for separately in your yard management software, same as cash and checks are separate.

The ATM uses sensors to prevent any over dispensing. Each bill that passes through the machine is measured for thickness and length. If any bill does not fit this measurement it is placed into a divert cassette. This prevents any notes that could possibly be stuck together from dispensing

If you choose to use a cash delivery service the only thing you will have to contend with is the physical security of the ATM. In most cases the ATM is installed in its own room. This would allow you to lock and alarm the ATM separate from your main security system. Some customers also add a camera to their security system that is inside the ATM room. Also the ATM itself has some alarm capabilities. The ATM comes with a harness that can be tied into a security panel and includes functionality such as: door triggers, vibration and heat sensors. Your ADT installer would be able to have the system go off if any of these triggers occur. A custom decal or sign could be added on or next to the ATM with that message.

There are definable rules within EZcash that will allow you to set certain parameters such as maximum dispense limit. Also, you should be able to set limits within your yard management software. There will be an ATM button on the your yard management software payment screen. When this button is clicked the payment information is passed to EZcash and a barcode is returned to your yard management software. The scale operator or cashier would then click the Receiver button to print the receipt with the barcode.

Most customers round up and down to the nearest dollar but coin is an option and mandatory in Canada and California. The ATM can pay exact amounts down to the penny or round to whatever increment is needed. Dispense limits are handled by EZcash and rules can be used to handle large payouts that may require multiple bundles of cash. Customers can easily set the maximum transaction value through the EZcash interface although it is most often managed by the Scale System.

The cash will be provided by you. Yes, the cash services usually charge by drop. This cost can change based on geographic area, frequency and provider. Typically you would want to keep a little over a week worth of cash in the machine. This figure can be determined by your current payouts.

Cash delivery will be handled by a courier service. Some of these companies also provide first and second line maintenance. In most cases the delivery company will at least provide first line support. As far as cash deliveries go, they will need to swap the cash and insert the new cash totals into the system. Actual maintenance would be performed by the first and second line personnel. Upon cash delivery the service provider will start a new “balance cycle” and input the cash figures into the system. On the next delivery they will start another new “balance cycle”, therefore ending the prior one. EZcash will provide you with the “balance cycles” start count, dispensed count, and remaining balance (amount returned to the bank). These figures can also be verified by detailed transaction reports as well as purchase reports from within your yard management software.

When you order cash, you would request that it be “ATM ready”. When preparing the cash, the vault will remove any cash that it deems unfit for an ATM.

This is normal procedure for the cash delivery companies. They will load the new cash order and deposit any unused cash from the previous cycle back into your account. They will also provide you with a balance sheet once the returned funds have been counted and verified.

Typically we sell the machines out right. However, there are finance companies that would be willing to lease the machine to you. As far as transaction fees go, the ATM is yours and the transactions occur on your own private network and there are no fees to complete a transaction

We use encryption to verify the barcode data being sent from the ATM and check it against the EZcash database. Any unauthorized barcodes (such as one on a box) would be kicked back is invalid.

A good example would be “Payment Time Regulations”, holding a payment for three days is configurable in EZcash and doesn’t require any system changes. The example of “you can’t buy copper for cash” would be handled in the Scale System. Procedures and changes are required in many Scale Systems as legislation changes. The use of JPEGger to capture images is often used for scrap theft issues.

The ATM machine can be purchased directly from TranAct and we are an NCR partner. Prior to shipping the ATM, we load all necessary software into the ATM and test for functionality. Upon arrival, you will need an installer or rigging company to set the machine into place. We can provide you with all the necessary installation instructions and service requirements.

Reliability and ease of use has been the biggest change. Peddlers want cash, so the actual process has not changed much. Before 2008 our solution was based on refurbished NCR ATMs using cards that the ATM retained for each payment. TranAct is now an NCR authorized dealer and with NCR’s help we created a new solution specifically for the scrap metal industry. With bar code receipts we eliminated card issues and by adding a redundant dispenser we cut most of our system down service calls. Voice and video instructions at the ATM has also played a part in enhancing the customer experience.

There are two ways that the delivery companies load cash. One is to load the money into the cassettes when they arrive on site or some companies may ask you to purchase an additional set of cassettes that are loaded at the vault and they simply swap them out with the existing ones. This is really a request or requirement that a particular service provider may have. Yes, the second option makes the actual delivery quicker. Usually you will just have a particular day of the week that the delivery takes place. For security reasons a lot of the delivery companies won’t give you an exact time but just a window of delivery. You may be able to set up a specific time with your service company but that would really have to be determined by that company and branch.

The ATM is normally anchored to the floor on each side of the unit. A dedicated 15 amp circuit for power and a Cat5e connection to the facilities data network. An indoor lobby ATM installation requires anchoring the ATM to the lobby floor and supplying the necessary wiring. Installation and placement of a through the wall exterior ATM necessitates the need for a hole to be cut into a wall. Once the hole has been cut, the machine can be moved into place and anchored to the ground in the same fashion as the indoor lobby ATM. Although the face of the ATM may be exposed to an outdoor environment the machine is actually behind the wall in a controlled environment. It is also recommended to wire up the alarm features found in the ATM. This would include alarm triggers such as vibration, heat and door switches. Your security company should also monitor prolonged power outages. Many customers who use the exterior model have the ATM in its own room and will have a separate alarm panel just for that space.

NCR ATMs come with a 90 day warranty that will cover both parts and labor. There are several options when it comes to service. You could even opt to have NCR service the equipment. Response time is something that can actually be written into the contract. For example, NCR has guaranteed two or four options that can be written into their agreement. There are two levels of service that you will need to have in place. First line maintenance will include any cash or paper jams and second line service will include hardware repair and replacement as well as second level diagnostics.

No one touches the cash but the armored car service and the customer; offers a lot of advantages for multi-yard companies. Safety for employees and customers is number one. Security is number two, the ability to assist in fraud prevention (check and internal) as well as the risk of robbery. The other benefits include process flow enhancements, central cash management, head count and peace of mind. Each benefit by itself has been the deciding factor in past purchases.

For a list of supported digital network cameras click here JPEGger Supported Network CamerasPDF

Text can be embedded on the image to include: ticket #, customer #, weight, date, time, etc.

JPEGger images can be printed, emailed, exported or uploaded to Leads on Line or other governmental agencies.

An unlimited number of snap shots can be stored with a transaction.

If you have an analog (NTSC) camera system, you can purchase a video encoder, which will convert your analog video to digital and can be accessed by JPEGger. This is usually not cost effective and in addition the image quality is typically subpar.

JPEGger currently supports Leads on Line (and other governmental agencies) and the data is typically transmitted automatically after business hours.

75 K but can vary widely based on resolution and compression.

Your images will be saved indefinitely unless they are purged or archived.

Windows 7, 8 or Later. Server, 2008 or later.

You will typically purchase peripheral equipment based on governmental compliance requirements in your state, county, city, etc. Some of the peripheral equipment available includes: electronic signature pad, thumb print scanner, document scanner, driver’s license scanner, nonferrous scale camera, peddler image camera, truck scale camera.

Microsoft SQL Server is a required piece of software. The JPEGger images are housed in its database. SQL Server workgroups is the minimum acceptable edition.

JPEGger database can be searched by ticket #, date, commodity, customer #, a combination thereof, etc

Snap shots are taken every time a commodity is weighed (to include gross weights and tare weights) and every time a peddler receives cash at either the cashier station or ATM. You will end up with a step-by-step record of every scrap purchase from first weight through final payment.

Scrap material on scale, peddler images, finger prints, signatures, drivers licenses, vehicle titles, emailed pictures, word documents, PDFs, excel files and other documents.

The hardware and network support is provided by your local computer company. Scrap Dragon support is available by telephone, e-mail and remotely using pcAnywhere. There is a monthly maintenance fee that includes future software upgrades.

This depends on you. The installation is done in 3 phases. ////PHASE-1//// the hardware is set up by you or by a local company that provides your computer network support. We provide specific instructions on setting up the computer peripherals and also provide installation support over the telephone. Hardware installation can take from one week to one month, depending on equipment delivery times, the amount of equipment required and the determination of the installers. ////PHASE-2//// the Scrap Dragon Software is installed and the system is configured for your needs. A Scrap Dragon specialist will work with your designated system administrator to do the initial setup and create the data files for your company. We use pcAnywhere during this phase of the installation to train your administrator without the high cost of on-site installation and training. Provided that at least one computer is available on the internet with pcAnywhere, phases I and II can proceed simultaneously to shorten the overall installation time. During this phase the electronic scales are interfaced, and printed forms are customized if desired. ////PHASE-3//// the employees are trained and the system goes live. If you prefer, you can arrange to have one of our installers on-site for this phase which usually takes two or three days.

We have made Scrap Dragon extremely easy to use without sacrificing any powerful features. In particular, all of the screens that are used at the scales, in the warehouse or by the cashier are designed to be easily used by traditional scrap yard employees with a minimal amount of training. Typing or computer skills are not required, and the system can be easily mastered by anyone who can read and point. Your employees will need less than an hour of training and will become proficient and comfortable after using the system for just a day or two. The system administrator is the only employee that will need to be trained for more than an hour, and this training is integrated within the installation and configuration of the system

Scrap Dragon contains over 80 built in reports. These include a wide variety of reports for complete yard management, and are grouped into 7 categories; Inventory, Commodity, Customer, Purchasing, Cashier, Exception and Shipping. Some are specialized reports, such as the Texas State Report and the Canada Sales Tax Report, but most are designed for use in any scrap yard. All of these reports can be previewed on the screen, printed to any connected printer or directed to a Microsoft Excel file. To add to the reporting flexibility, most of the reports can be selected by date range and many have other selection criteria as well.

Yes. Scrap Dragon is compliant which the Microsoft Open Database Concept (ODBC) which makes it compatible with most accounting software. Even if your accounting software is not ODBC compliant, Scrap Dragon can still be interfaced using a simple ASCII file transfer. We have already developed interfaces for Peachtree, Quick Books, MAS 2000 and Alere.

There are many fine accounting packages available on the market. There are far fewer good, affordable scrap yard systems. We prefer to focus our development efforts on creating the best scrap yard system that we can and then make it work with the accounting system of your choice. We wouldn’t want to force you to use our G/L Accounting system and deny you the opportunity to use one of the far superior accounting packages that are currently available.

Not anymore. Initially, Scrap Dragon was developed to purchase scrap at the scale and to pay for it using an ATM. By incorporating sophisticated data entry and data capture hardware, we designed a system that was faster, easier and more accurate than anything else available. Since then, we have continued to add capabilities to the system and now offer a complete product (Sell Side) that includes contract management, shipping, inventory, and Dispatch. In conjunction with your general ledger accounting system, Scrap Dragon provides complete yard management capability.

Yes. Scrap Dragon provides for limitless pricing possibilities by importing directly from Microsoft Excel spreadsheets. Any formula that can be maintained in Excel can be used in Scrap Dragon.

Price Lists are used for two purposes. First, we use price lists to set up Pricing Tiers that appear in Scrap Buying on a pop-up list of available prices. Technically, Tier Prices are not automatic prices in that they are never part of an automatic price calculation. However, tier pricing is very useful in giving the scrap buyer price guidelines for special situations. Secondly, we use price lists to set up Customer Pricing. This is special automatic pricing that is for a particular customer for a particular commodity for a particular date range. Customer pricing can be set up as a flat rate price or as a formula based on the Scale price.

Yes. Automatic pricing is one of the most useful features of the program. The most basic of automatic prices is the Scale Price or Door Price. This is the price that would be available to anyone and is usually the lowest price paid for a commodity. This price is entered into the commodity table and can be changed at any time. All other automatic pricing is established by creating special Price Lists.

The number of different commodities that can be purchased with Scrap Dragon is virtually unlimited. Each button screen has 21 buttons. For a typical ferrous scale, all of the commodities will fit on a single screen, but 21 buttons is usually not enough for a nonferrous scale. However, any button can be designated to display an additional page of buttons. The most frequently purchased commodities would be put onto buttons on the home page and less frequently purchased commodities would be on additional pages that could be accessed by pressing a button on the home page

We don’t, you do. The system is designed so that you don’t need a programmer to set up or maintain the screens that your scrap buyers use. You create the list of commodities that you will buy, and you specify a button for each commodity. You control the label, the font, and the color of the button. Using our unique button menu maker, you then place the buttons on the screen wherever you want them.

Using our companion product, JPEGger, we can take any number of pictures of the entire scrap buying process. We use Ethernet networked cameras over tcpp/ip and can capture images from the scales, from the cashier window and from the ATM. Multiple cameras can be used to take pictures from different angles. For example, when a truck is weighed in you might want to take one picture of the material from above and one picture of the vehicle from the side. All images can be viewed by ticket number from within Scrap Dragon and can easily be e-mailed to your customer.

Yes, if your scale has an electronic indicator with an external serial port that can be configured for continuous output. This includes most indicators on the market today. We have interfaced with Cardinal, Rice Lake, Mettler-Toledo, Fairbanks, Trancell, Western, GSE and Weightronix . We connect your scale directly to your computer and do not require you to purchase any proprietary hardware. While some of our customers choose to just enter the weights manually on every ticket, this is much more time consuming and much less reliable than reading the weights directly from the scale. Even when the direct weights are used, the system can be configured to allow the operator to override the automatic weights.

True, computers don’t do well in dirty, dusty environments which get extremely hot or cold. We overcome this problem by placing the computers in Dustshield industrial computer enclosures. These enclosures are made with 3/8” ABS plastic and meet NEMA standards. They provide positive pressure air flow and feature replaceable 0.1 micron filters that remove 98% of all contaminants. They can be equipped with extra fans, heaters and even A/C. We offer a custom Dust-shield Kiosk specifically made for Scrap Dragon that is perfect for nonferrous scrap buying.

Absolutely. Using a laser printer, Scrap Dragon can print checks on pre-printed check forms or on blank check stock.

The ATM is the safest and most reliable method of making cash payments to your customers. However, you don’t have to have an ATM as Scrap Dragon has a complete Cashier module that supports traditional cash and check payments. The payment system is actually very powerful. Payment for an individual scrap purchase can be easily split into different pay methods (Cash, Check or ATM) and even split among different payees (driver, owner, etc). Payment can be made at the time of purchase or held on account for future payment. On account tickets to be paid can be selected from a list of open payables for a particular customer or can be printed in a batch process based on the due date.

Scrap Dragon is designed to work in any metal recycling facility. It works for Ferrous and Nonferrous, for Wholesale and Retail. There are setup screens in the back office module that let you easily configure the program for your needs.

  • Physically secure platform to anchor machine
  • Local Area Network connectivity
  • 110 volt, 30 amp dedicated electrical service
  • Adequate access for servicing and filling machine
  • Adequate lighting and security
  • PC with Windows XP Pro or later; Windows Server 2003 or later
  • Microsoft SQL Server for Workgroups 2005 or later