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Enter DeFi Part 2

This article is a continuation of Enter DeFi Part 1 and is intended to explain how to configure a Metamask wallet with various blockchains and add the native tokens to pay for gas fees. Once the blockchains are configured, you will be able to purchase coins on the blockchains and use bridges to chain hop into various DeFi projects. The blockchain configurations in this article are Ethereum (ETH), Fantom (FTM), Avalanche (AVAX), Binance Smart Chain (BNB), Harmony (ONE), and Polygon (MATIC). There are many other blockchains that can be added to a Metamask wallet and most layer 1 blockchains have a website that provides the information needed to configure Metamask or any other noncustodial wallet to the blockchain. All compatible blockchains for Metamask run on the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM).

Ethereum (ETH)

Photo by Zoltan Tasi on Unsplash

Let’s start with Ethereum. When you create your Metamask wallet, it defaults to the Ethereum blockchain. There is nothing more you need to do to utilize the Ethereum blockchain.

To add an additional blockchain click the icon with the circle next to the Ethereum Mainnet Dropdown.

Then click settings

Then click Networks

On this screen there is an option to add the Network Name, the New RPC URL, Chain ID, Currency Symbol, and Block Explorer URL.

Fantom (FTM)

We are going to start with my favorite blockchain right now, Fantom. Add the following data:

Network Name: Fantom Opera

RPC Url: https://rpc.ftm.tools/

ChainID: 250

Symbol: FTM

Block Explorer URL: https://ftmscan.com/

Then click the “save” button below. The Fantom Opera blockchain has now been added to Metamask. Now when the Fantom Opera icon is clicked, a dropdown will appear with the Ethereum and Fantom Opera Blockchain as options.

Attached is a hyperlink to the Fantom Foundation for additional context and verification.

Now you will need to add the native coin FTM in order to transact. The best way I have found is to purchase initial FTM, is on Binance.us The FTM can be sent directly to a Metamask account. To do this copy the Metamask address. Then click withdrawl on Binance.us. Then paste the address on Binance.us. When withdrawing and sending FTM from a binance.us account, be sure to click the FTM scan option. If ERC20 is chosen, the FTM coins will go to the Ethereum blockchain and there will be unnecessary gas fees to move it off the chain through a bridge.

Avalanche (AVAX)

Next we are going to configure the Avalanche (AVAX) blockchain. Again click on the circle icon in the right hand corner -> Settings -> Network

Add the following data:

Network Name: Avalanche

RPC Url: https://api.avax.network/ext/bc/C/rpc

ChainID: 43114

Symbol: AVAX

Block Explorer URL: https://snowtrace.io/

Attached is a hyperlink to the Avalanche website for additional context and verification.

To get AVAX into Metamask, purchase on coinbase. Then send to your metamask wallet. Similar to the binance.us, click copy for the Metamask address and paste it into your the address bar when you click send in Coinbase. There are no additional steps for AVAX

Binance Smart Chain (BNB)

Next we are going to configure the Binance Smart Chain (BNB). Again click on the circle icon in the right hand corner -> Settings -> Network

Add the following data:

Network Name: Binance

RPC Url: https://bsc-dataseed.binance.org/

ChainID: 56

Symbol: BNB

Block Explorer URL: https://bscscan.com

Attached is a hyperlink to the Binance website for additional context and verification.

For BNB, it is most straightforward to send directly from a Binance.us account. Purchase BNB on Binance.us and send it to the Metamask wallet. Be sure to select BEP20 token in order to make it to the BSC configured to your Metamask wallet.

Harmony (ONE)

Next we are going to configure the Harmony (ONE) blockchain. Again click on the circle icon in the right hand corner -> Settings -> Network

Add the following data:

Network Name: Harmony

RPC Url: https://api.harmony.one

ChainID: 1666600000

Symbol: ONE

Block Explorer URL: https://explorer.harmony.one/

Attached is a hyperlink to the Harmony ONE website for additional information and configuration verification.

The best way I found to put ONE into Metamask was to purchase on KuCoin. To do this, purchase USDT on Coinbase and send it to the KuCoin wallet. Then find the USDT/ONE pair on KuCoin and purchase ONE. Then copy the metamask address, paste in KuCoin, and send the ONE to the metamask address. To get this to work you will need to copy your metamask address in the ONE Block Explorer above: https://explorer.harmony.one/ Then you need to add your metamask address in the block explorer which will give you your ONE address which starts with ONE instead of Ox. This is the address you will need to use in KuCoin. For the intent of purchasing ONE on KuCoin, do not purchase another stable coin. The only ONE pair available on KuCoin is the USDT/ONE pair.

Polygon (MATIC)

Next we are going to configure the Harmony (ONE) blockchain. Again click on the circle icon in the right hand corner -> Settings -> Network

Add the following data:

Network Name: MATIC

RPC Url: https://polygon-rpc.com/

ChainID: 137

Symbol: MATIC

Block Explorer URL: https://explorer.matic.network

Attached is a hyperlink to the Polygon website for additional information and configuration verification.

Matic can be purchased on binance.us and sent to a Metamask wallet. When sending MATIC from Binance.us be sure to select polygon network. I should note that I have had plenty of errors so if it does not send, it is possible to select ERC20 on binance.us which will send the MATIC to the Ethereum chain in Metamask. Once it lands you will need to bridge the MATIC from Ethereum to Polygon.

Some important details:

  1. Always make sure you keep enough native coin in your wallet to transact. As you’ve witnessed this takes a few steps and if you run out of gas you have to go back to CeFi and fuel up with the native token. The easiest way to purchase your native coin is simply to use a DEX on the blockchain. You should only have to purchase the native coin on CeFi once.
  2. Be sure to let your transaction clear on your CeFi account before you purchase the native coin. If you do not and you purchase say, AVAX straightaway on Coinbase, you have to wait 6 days for your transaction to settle and move the AVAX onto your Metamask wallet. During that time period the coin may depreciate. If you never intended to purchase any other coin with your AVAX on Metamask that’s fine, however if you intended to buy say PTP, you came to DeFi with less value than you could have if you stayed in USD or a stable coin on CeFi and made a quick transaction to reduce price volatility for the speculative layer 1 asset. I encourage everyone to let their US dollars stay in USD or purchase a stable coin while they let the transaction clear in CeFi.
  3. There are a lot of steps to this. Take it one step at a time. Don’t get overwhelmed and at the same time don’t be lazy. You are an early adopter. If it was easy, everyone would be doing it. The fact that it’s not easy and you are putting in the work to learn DeFi is the reason why you will make handsome rewards. The next article, Enter DeFi Part 3, will go over recommended DEXs on each chain, the function of a DEX, adding new coins to your Metamask account, and using a bridge to chain hop.

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Cheers!

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