Almost everything you can pickup in Fallout 4 can be scrapped for components, but not quite everything.

Some things clearly are not junk, even though they can be scrapped. As far as I'm aware, this includes all non-legendary weapons and armor and mods when attached, so ignore those. Some things are pretty clearly not junk, and cannot be scrapped. As far as I'm aware, this includes aid items, so ignore those. If you know an exception to these broad strokes, please mention it.

This leaves Misc items. I think some of these can be broken down (in workshop mode), but many cannot. Folders, for instance, cannot.

What items are in this category?

An exhaustive list would be nice if it's short enough, but the point is to avoid picking up things I can't scrap, so focus on ones one is likely to see, and on describing them in a way that can be remembered.

  • 2
    I have to assume those downvotes are because this looks like a "list question", but it's a finite list that will not need to be updated over time or added to. If there's another reason, I'd love to hear it. – DCShannon Jan 8 '16 at 1:13
  • Not a downvoter, but I'd assume people probably just don't like the "Give me a list of..." questions. I wouldn't expect this list to be very large at all... But many lists are finite, given enough time ;) – Broots Waymb Jan 8 '16 at 14:34
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    I don't know why you expect the list to be short enough to fit the SE format. Fallout 4 has hundereds, if not thousands, of items. Of the seven categories in the player inventory (which in fact do not encompass all items in the game, nor all that can be scrapped), only three hold items which are commonly expected to be scrapped. Performing exhaustive testing or code analysis of all items in Fallout 4, and providing a list of what can or cannot be scrapped would be far beyond the appropriate scope for a single SE answer. – Iszi Jan 8 '16 at 17:30
  • @Iszi Hmm... In my answer, I focused mainly on the items that appear to be random junk, but weren't scrappable, since they show up in the 'Misc' tab (such as his example, folders). I can see that the way the question is currently worded... that it could be interpreted as a question for a full list of non-scrappable items, which would include ammo, mods, and aid (as you pointed out in your answer). Maybe adding a bit of focus to the question would help clarify. – king14nyr Jan 8 '16 at 17:41
  • The biggest problem with this question, I think, is the specific listing of Folders. That blows the scope wide beyond what's normally expected to be scrap-able in the first place, by including an item in the Misc category. (All of which, to my knowledge, cannot be scrapped - albeit, as @king14nyr has noted, there are some which can be used as ingredients.) Perhaps narrow it down to something like "What weapons/armor/junk, if any, cannot be scrapped?" and you'll find a list of a more SE-appropriate size. – Iszi Jan 8 '16 at 17:46

To my knowledge, all the items that seem like junk, but are not scrappable, appear in the 'Misc' section of your inventory instead of the 'Junk' tab. You might have noticed that when collecting folders, for example, they sit in the 'Misc' tab of your Pip-Boy inventory until you remove them yourself, and do not move when performing the "store all junk" action at a workshop.

That being said, the most complete list I've been able to find is at the Fallout 4 Wiki article on Miscellaneous Items, more specifically the "Other Items" section. This section contains all of the items I've run across that seem like junk, but was unable to scrap:

  • Bobby Pin
  • Book Return Token/Overdue book
  • Burnt Book/Textbook
  • Burnt Fashion/Lifestyle/Trade Magazines
  • Burnt Grognak/Manta-Man/Unstoppables Comics
  • Cybernetic Limb Actuator
  • Cybernetic Pain Inhibitor
  • Delivered Boston Bugle
  • Eyebot/Mr. Handy/Mr. Gutsy/Protectron/Robot Parts/Sentry Bot Models
  • Folder
  • Lab Scale
  • Napkin
  • Stingwing Barb
  • Subway Token
  • Vault-Tec Lunchbox

Some items in this list, while not scrappable, still serve some purpose for crafting or gameplay. Stingwing barbs and Vault-Tec lunchboxes are used in crafting. Bobby pins are, of course, for lockpicking. Overdue books/book return tokens are used at Book Return terminals, and Subway Tokens are for paying Subway Stewards.

Furthermore, not all of these items are weightless. Whereas collecting all folders might add some clutter to your inventory, collecting burnt books/textbooks also has the negative effect of adding 1 weight each (with a value of 0), so should be avoided to prevent being over-encumbered.

Needless to say, other items that appear in the 'Misc' inventory tab, such as holotapes, notes, quest items, etc., cannot be scrapped. The one exception to this seems to be the RFID Device, given to you during the quest "Jackpot". It is not marked as a quest item, which would prevent it from being scrapped.

  • Wait... what's a Vault-Tec Lunchbox used for? – Iszi Jan 8 '16 at 17:31
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    @Iszi Bottlecap Mine. – king14nyr Jan 8 '16 at 17:33
  • I think that list on the Fallout Wiki pretty much answers it. I was looking for that and couldn't find it before posting the question. – DCShannon Jan 8 '16 at 20:21
  • If you copy over the contents of that list, so that it's not just in a link, I might just accept this. – DCShannon Jan 8 '16 at 21:39
  • @DCShannon I've added it. I typically try to avoid putting lists from the Wiki in answers, since that can change so often and make our answers out of date. This list shouldn't change often, though... We can edit in any changes, if need be. – king14nyr Jan 11 '16 at 14:00

Your inventory is broken into several categories:

  • Weapons
  • Apparel
  • Aid
  • Misc
  • Junk
  • Mods
  • Ammo

Categories in bold are the ones which contain items which are generally easy to break down into scrap. All non-legendary Weapons can be broken down manually at a workbench. Most non-legendary armor in the Apparel category can be broken down manually at a workbench as well, but not all Apparel is armor and there's even some exceptions which are armor. All Junk will be automatically be broken down as needed during crafting.

Workstations also have a somewhat-hidden inventory of items that can be used in settlement construction, which the player has either built or collected and chosen to put into storage there. When not labeled as critical for a mission, these items can be scrapped in construction mode after you place them in the environment.

It's conceivable that some Aid/Misc/Mods/Ammo items (and non-armor Apparel) could be scrapped if they were dropped in the environment and then viewed in construction mode. However, I have not thoroughly tested this myself and I personally consider it to be generally unlikely. (Maybe the non-armor Apparel will go, but probably not the rest.)

At the very least, I do know that most - if not all - food items (which would be collected under Aid) cannot be scrapped. I find it generally annoying since it just adds a bit more hassle to cleanup of things like Blamco Mac & Cheese whenever I'm taking over a new settlement.

  • Weapons/Apparel can also be 'scrapped' by dropping them in a settlement, entering workshop mode, hovering over them and selecting 'Scrap'. This technique is especially useful as it works for items that cannot normally be modded and thus do not show in the Weapon/Apparel workbench screens – Robotnik Jan 13 '16 at 5:00

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