Mercury is very bad stuff and amalgamation by definition releases
stuff probably will red flag you on at least a few government
"watch lists". The stuff is available (although I will not say
where) expensive and with shocking Hazmat shipping and more
expenses to legally dispose of any hazmat waste.
The irrational terror surrounding mercury is truly amazing. In the
grand scheme of chemistry, metallic mercury is not that bad, really.
People have injected themselves with it and survived with little ill
effect(the case I read of was a failed suicide attempt). Other forms
of mercury, methyl mercury specifically, are far more toxic. Sodium
hydroxide, sold as Draino crystals, in solution is a sufficiently
strong base to blind you in fifteen seconds should it be splashed in
your eyes. Many plating solutions use compounds containing cyanide. A
surprising number of household cleaning agents are little more than
dilute hydrochloric acid.
Then there is gasoline. Gasoline contains multiple known
carcinogens, and can be absorbed through the skin. Proper protective
equipment includes splash goggles, gloves and respirator. The only
reason people don’t wear these things is simply a lack of education
about the risks involved.
If given a choice between handling these chemicals and handling
metallic mercury, I’ll choose mercury any day.