Shapeshift is a service to convert from one currency to another. One sends currency to Shapeshift from one’s wallet, and they will then convert and resend toward your other currency’s wallet. Shapeshift support a huge amount of currencies and is a great way to convert into a currency without having to bid for it on an exchange.


  1. You must have a source wallet with currency in it.
  2. You must have a destination wallet for the converted currency.

The wallets can be anywhere. They can be apps on your phone, or computer. They can also be wallets on exchanges. Here’s some conversion examples:

  • From a phone’s wallet to an exchange.
  • From an exchange to a computer’s wallet.
  • From an exchange to a paper wallet.
  • From a phone’s wallet to another phone’s wallet.

Some real world examples are:

  • Someone wants Monero because they see it spiking fast and all they have is Litecoin.
    • They Shapeshift Bitcoin from Coinbase to their Ledger’s Monero wallet.
  • Someone wants to stash Bitcoin for the long haul, but all they have is Dash.
    • They Shapeshift Dash from their phone app to a Bitcoin paper wallet.
  • Someone wants to buy a TickleMeElmo from their friend whom only has a Ripple wallet, but the buyer only has Ether.
    • The buyer Shapeshifts from his Trezor’s Ether wallet to the seller’s Ripple wallet.

As one can see, there is a near infinite combination of currency movements. If one has the address of a destination wallet, and currency in their own wallet, then most likely a Shapeshift can occur.

How to Use Shapeshift.

  1. Surf to Shapeshift.
  2. On the web site, there is a section which looks like this:
  3. Choose the SOURCE currency listed under Deposit you wish to convert. In this case, Bitcoin was chosen to convert.
  4. Choose the DESTINATION currency listed under Receive you wish to be converted into. In this case, Ether was chosen to be converted into.
  5. Choose Quick and then click Continue.
  6. On the next dialog box enter the appropriate addresses. The text box “Your Ether Address” is where one wants the funds to go to. The “Your Bitcoin Refund Address” is the emergency screw-up address. If things fail, the money goes back to that address; you want this.
  7. A filled out dialog box below. Make sure you fill out both addresses before hitting “Start Transaction”. 
  8. When you click “Start Transaction”, the dialog will transform into an Order ID dialog. At this point, Shapeshift is waiting for you to SEND them some currency to be transformed. 
  9. Open up your Bitcoin wallet and click send. Punch in the address listed above, or scan the QR code with your phone’s Bitcoin app. Enter the amount you want sent in Bitcoin. Once you hit send on your app, the dialog box will update. The Awaiting Deposit will turn into a green check box, and immediately the Awaiting Exchange will change too. At this point, BE VERY PATIENT. It took me several hours for the final check mark to turn green on one particular transfer. Typically, this will only take 10 minutes or less. The bookmark button on the top right of the dialog allows you to save this page to check the status. You do not need to keep the web browser up and running. You may safely turn off your computer and come back later. Simply hit refresh, or fire up that bookmark to see how things are going.
    1. What if the funds are NEVER transferred? Make sure you wait 24 hours. It is entirely reasonable for a very popular coin to get back logged. If it never, never, never, ever makes it, contact Shapeshift’s help-desk and make sure you give them your Order ID from the bookmark you saved.
    2. The support form will also ask you to put in the Deposit Transaction ID Hash. This comes from your wallet you sent the funds from. Look in the history section and click on the one in which you sent the funds. If you are a Coinbase user, one can only get this data from the web page. Log into the Coinbase, click “Accounts”, click which ever account you sent from, in this case it was Bitcoin. Once clicked, the history list will display on the right, click on the transaction you want more info. Once clicked, the dialog box will have a “View Transaction” link. Click that, it will bring you to the block explorer. Select that entire URL (the web link thingy in your browser bar) and put that in the email to support. That should give them enough info to figure out what happened.

If you need any help, talk to Shapeshift first, then if nothing is resolved, or the whole thing has gone sideways, shoot me a message and I can see what I can do…for a fee 🙂