How to mine an NFT for free?

One of the best things about the NFT space is its broad appeal to enthusiasts from all walks of life. From millionaire celebrities to teenage hobbyists, the promise of non-fungibles is a decentralized deed of ownership available to everyone.

However, the world of NFTs is currently dominated by the Ethereum blockchain. While Ethereum has proved vital to the flourishing of the NFT space, it is also a victim of its own success.

As network adoption has increased for both crypto, NFT and DeFi usage, it has become increasingly overloaded, leading to extremely volatile gas prices. This often makes hitting NFTs prohibitively expensive.

Fortunately, creators now have another option. In this article, we’ll explain exactly how to mint an NFT for free so that everyone can get involved in the non-fungible creator scene.

What is minting?

Creating an NFT is the process used to convert your digital art, profile picture, music or any other form of collectible into something that exists on the blockchain.

The term comes from the way coins are “beaten” before being put into circulation. However, unlike currencies, each newly minted NFT is considered unique and does not necessarily have the same value as all the others.

Minting involves assigning a tokenID to a crypto address† This is recorded in the ledger and can then be checked by anyone if they want to check.

This process is often facilitated by NFT marketplaces that streamline all the steps involved, including linking to a graphical representation of the token, the royalties involved, a description, starting price, and other metadata.

Most NFTs are still on the Ethereum blockchain and as such use the ERC-721 token standard.

Striking an ERC-721 incurs upfront costs in terms of gas costs, as the smart contract involved is immediately written to the ledger.

What is lazy minting?

While ERC-721 is still considered the “gold standard” of NFTs, its upfront gas costs and undue strain on the network have been criticized as wasteful. With no guarantee of a sale, creators could lose hundreds of dollars just for offering an NFT, not to mention the carbon footprint caused by processing the minting of the token.

These concerns have led to the development of an alternative called ‘lazy minting’. In tech, instead of an insult, calling something “lazy” just means it won’t run its code until it needs to, making it much more efficient.

Rather than pre-mining an NFT, lazy minting allows users to upload all relevant metadata without actually interacting with the blockchain, making it an off-chain solution.

Lazy minting uses this idea and only mints when an NFT is bought. In this way, there is no interaction with the blockchain until it is necessary to do so, saving makers money for NFTs that never sell and significantly reducing network usage.

In lazy minting, the asset data is stored using the marketplace and decentralized storage on IPFS (https://ipfs.io/). Both ERC-721 and the newer, multi-purpose ERC-1155 token standard can use lazy minting.

What is lazy hitting used for?

Lazy minting is ideal for large NFT collections with thousands of tokens. Pre-mining each individual NFT in a collection is unnecessary and a big expense. It is also often the case that collectors are only too happy to mint the token themselves, assuming that they are the first to handle it.

It is also useful for those who simply cannot risk the cost of striking for a sale. With lazy minting, the revenue from the sale can be used to offset gas costs or pass it on to the mint master, meaning a creator never has to come out of his own pocket.

How to mine an NFT for free?

That said, here’s how to mint NFTs for free using 2 of the major platforms: OpenSea and Rarible.

While there are other NFT marketplaces that offer similar services, the process is much the same and the following can be used as a roadmap.

Beating lazily on the open sea

OpenSea, by far the largest NFT marketplace, is the first port of call for most collectors and makers.

With such a large user base, now standing at over 1 million, the market has played an important role in the direction the NFT space has taken.

With their lazy coin function, OpenSea legitimized the concept and is now seeing an increasing number of users choose to go this route. With the addition of royalty tracking, OpenSea is definitely worth considering if you want to mint an NFT for free.

To get started, follow these steps:

  1. Connect your wallet

Visit the OpenSea website (https://opensea.io/) and connect your crypto wallet. The platform supports multiple different types of wallets, with MetaMask (https://metamask.io/) being the most widely used.

  1. Create a collection

All NFTs on OpenSea exist within a collection. You must therefore create a collection before hitting, which you can do by hitting your . to click profile icon in the top right corner and select My collections and then To create

You will then need to provide some information about your collection, including images, name, and a description.

  1. Choose your blockchain

With OpenSea now supporting multiple blockchains, including Polygon and Solana, as well as Ethereum, you will then be prompted to select which network to use.

To enjoy gasless beating, choose: polygon† Polygon is a low-2-scale solution that works on top of Ethereum. Although you will be using Polygon for minting, your tokens will still be Ethereum compatible with tools such as the NFT Bridge (https://bridge.mintnft.today/).

  1. Start adding NFTs

With your wallet connected, your collection set up and Polygon selected, you are ready to start lazily minting coins. Proceed to upload art, music or other digital assets and mint as an NFT. You will be given the choice to select how many copies of the token you want minted, the sale format and the price.

Lazy beating on rarity

Follow these steps to lazy mint with Rarible:

  1. Log in with your crypto wallet

In the top right corner of the screen, select login and choose your favorite crypto wallet. Again, MetaMask is the most widely used and therefore has the most support, so it is recommended for new users.

  1. Click “Create”

You will also see a brightly colored button reading in the top right corner To create† Click on this and you will be asked what type of token you want to create, Single or multiple† Select your choice based on the type of NFT project you are implementing. For example, a collection would select ‘multiple’.

  1. Upload file

On the next screen you will be asked to: upload your file and choose you Pricing Structure

  1. Choose “smooth coins for free”

You will then be asked how you want to mint your token. Select mint coins for free and will be asked to fill in some information, such as the name, description, and royalty structure of the token.

  1. Select “create item”

To finish creating your NFT, click create article, who then lists the token on the Rarible marketplace and adds it to the ledger upon purchase.

To take off

While lazy minting is often seen by enthusiasts as a less attractive proposition than pre-minting, its use now makes sense not only in terms of cost savings, but also for the good of the network and the planet. Lazy minting allows users who would otherwise be unwilling to enter the NFT space to explore the world of non-fungibles and see how they fare.

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