David Binford has been a fixture in the Seattle area metal recycling industry for nearly 30 years. It all started in the mid 80’s when he was working for Davis Wire. He always recognized the value in the scrap wire and metals that are a byproduct of that industry. Over time, he got to know some of the players in the recycling industry and formed a good relationship with Clyde Shaw, owner and operator of Clyde Shaw Scrap Iron & Metals in Kent, WA. When the time came for Clyde to retire, Dave asked what he planned to do with the business, and Clyde responded by handing him a flyer and letting him know that the business was up for sale. This sales flyer still sits on his desk, at an arm’s reach, to remind him of how Binford Metals was born. Dave knew right away that he wanted to purchase the business, even though some of his family and friends told him he was crazy, and that it would never work. With the odds against him, he forged ahead and purchased the business, in May of 1993, renaming it “Binford Metals”.
The business operated on 228th St. in Kent, WA out of a small, leased lot with just two employees, one of which was Dave himself. After about 3 years the owner of the land offered to sell it to Dave for $200,000. At the time that seemed awfully expensive, and while Dave was contemplating the purchase, the owner sold the land to someone else for $500,000. Even though the land had sold, Dave continued to lease it for another year before learning that the new owner had defaulted on the payments. At this point Dave got another call from the original owner offering to sell it to him again, this time for $500,000, and Dave said “Yes!”. After a couple weeks passed, and not having heard anything about the pending purchase, Dave followed up and learned that the owner had sold to someone else for $1,000,000! This time the change in ownership forced Dave to relocate the business. While this was a setback, Binford Metals relocated to a new location at Cooper’s Corner in Enumclaw.
The hopes of a long-term location were short lived though, as zoning changes forced yet another move after just 2 years. Still not conceding to all the challenges his young company had faced, Dave packed up and moved again. This time, Binford Metals relocated to a tiny little ¼ acre site located in an industrial business park amongst several auto wrecking businesses along a road known locally as “Junkyard Row” on 78th Avenue S., in Kent, WA. Binford Metals had seemingly found it’s forever home, but after a couple years Dave was confronted by the managing owner of the business park who approached him and asked, “Who the hell are you?”, to which Dave replied, “I am David Binford of Binford Metals!”. When the managing owner advised him that he was an illegal tenant on the property Dave quickly showed him his checkbook proving that he had diligently been making his rent payments every month, and always on time. As it turned out, Dave had sublet the property from someone who was pocketing the money, and not paying the landowners. While many tenants on the property were evicted, Dave worked out an arrangement to remain on the property and to pay the owners directly.
After a couple more years passed, Dave was presented with the opportunity to buy the entire business park. The agreement to purchase the land meant Binford Metals expanded from just a quarter of an acre to nearly 13 acres of combined space. During this period, the business grew considerably and eventually employed about 40 full-time staff. With this additional space, Binford Metals began buying a wider range of metals, everything from Aluminum to Zinc (A to Z). While the company grew, the payments were tough. Dave was pretty sure that the landowners structured the purchase in the hopes that he would fail, so that they would ultimately get the property back. Even with this challenge, Dave always managed make the payments, and set money aside to be sure that the exceptionally large balloon payments were always paid on time. Thanks to Dave’s determination and the help of his expanded team, the land was paid off in full, and Binford Metals was on the highway to real success. It took nearly 20 years from the initial dream to this point, but Dave has proven ALL the doubters wrong!
In early 2004, Dave decided it was time to expand into the auto recycling and parts sales. With this new stream of revenue, and the growth of the metal recycling side of the business, Binford Metals found itself bursting at the seams, and in need of more space. In 2017 Binford Metals acquired a neighboring business, AAA Auto Wrecking, which was renamed Binford Auto Wrecking, and provided the company the much-needed space to sell auto parts, while allowing the metal recycling division to focus on the diverse range of metals available to be recycled in our area. Significant investments were made to the improve auto parts yard such as replacing the gravel yard with concrete and installing racks to allow for proper storage of newer parts vehicles. Binford Auto Parts is now a major distributer of used auto parts, servicing automotive repair shops and backyard mechanics throughout the region.
While not planning for any further immediate growth, the opportunity to purchase another adjacent business presented itself in 2019, and Binford Metals acquired Budget Auto Wrecking in December of 2019. Just 3 months after this acquisition the world was hit with the Coronavirus pandemic, which surely put a bit of fear into any business owner. But, just as the sun rises every day, the scrap business endures, and 2020 turned out to be a great year for Binford Metals.
As 2021 clicks away Dave decided to take on yet another new venture, and in April, Binford Metals acquired its first remote facility by purchasing DLC Recycling in Yakima, which will move forward as Binford Metals & Recycling.
Anyone who knows Dave, knows of his love for all things automotive. His hard work and creative vision have paid off in the huge success of his latest creation, which we affectionately refer to as Dave’s “Field of Dreams”. He turned an eleven-acre berry patch that is part of the property, into a beautiful venue for hosting many car shows.
A harder working man is hard to find! Dave prides himself on his dedication to honest, high quality service with a small business attitude. His team of over 150 employees are highly appreciated and the whole Binford Team looks forward to many more years serving the Pacific Northwest!