I really dont see the problem. First of all, if you take the full weight of the gold items, multiply by 14/24 for 14 karat or 10/24 for 10 k youll find that the most you can expect is 50 or 60% of the weight. (we are not talking plated). Now, there is a refinary fee. ..perhaps as much as $60/oz.
say you send in 8 oz of 14K gold. Figure on about 4oz X 950/ozor $3800, less refinery of $200 or about $3600 max. Say a 10% profit, resulting in $3, 240. This comes to about $800/oz. This is the MOST you can expect. If you get $600/oz, i would be surprised.
Now, as for trust? Baloney. You would be betteroff going to several jewelers and getting a quote from them . They deal with refineries all the time. Even then, I would be surprised if you can get half the actual price of Gold, maybe $500/oz.