I'm looking to purchase a bulk amount of broken and or semi-functional iPhones/iPads/MacBooks. I'm looking for an electronic recycling supplier that fits this criteria - I understand you probably don't sell these parts yourself, but could you recommend suppliers I could get in contact and negotiate with? Thanks!
I've found most of my suppliers on eBay. The thing is, if you're selling piles of broken stuff on eBay, you're probably doing it because you don't have another outlet for it. In other words, these kinds of sellers often don't know what they have, and just want to offload it. Most recyclers specialize in PCs because that's what they get the most of, and they don't know what to do with Apple stuff. Search for "macbook lot", "iPad lot", "iPhone lot", etc. Sort by "newly listed". Find the ones that are being listed as-is and for parts. Click on "see other items" -- if they have 500 listings for items that you'd expect an electronics recycler to have, then they are likely an electronics recycler.
My technique is to find a listing like this that I actually want, then buy it, and then if I'm happy with the product, follow up with an e-mail introducing myself and letting them know that as a refurbisher I'm willing to buy any amount of additional material they get. Having purchased something already causes them to take you seriously when you make this offer. And they will often take you up on it, because everyone hates listing on eBay, and if they can reduce the situation down to a simple PayPal transaction and not have to take pictures, etc., then that will be an attractive proposition.
The thing about it is, though, you want to think of recyclers as your customers, and you want to make their lives easy. You can't ask a million questions, ask them to take pictures, etc. Recyclers want to move material quickly, so the simpler you make the transaction, the more likely they will keep dealing with you. Keep the prices LOW -- my general rule is to not pay more than you could sell it for broken. That way, if it all shows up broken, it's still worth it. Anything more than that is a gamble. A lot of recyclers are fine with super-low prices as long as you are easy to deal with.
You'll want to buy everything they offer within the specific category of interest. You're their trash person, so to speak. If you only take 1/3 of the trash, they're going to need to find another trash person to take the other 2/3, and they just might call that guy first next time. Again, it's all about treating the recyclers as customers and making their lives easy.
Hope that helps, and let me know if you have more questions!