Ask The Experts: Is there a safe DIY alternative to cyanide or mercury for extraction?
September 2016 by Chris Ralph
Q: With safety as a given, what can the average miner, or Joe-blow greenhorn do to identify and extract some metals or minerals with off-the-shelf products or natural ingredients?
Most placer equipment is really made with gold in the 30 and larger mesh sizes in mind, though if carefully used can often get reasonable recovery down to the 50 mesh size.
Silver refining has been used from ancient times to change the characteristics of the metal. Early metallurgists refined silver by heating it a couple hundred degrees above its melting point and holding the metal at an elevated temperature for a period of time.
Let’s set up a thought experiment: Suppose you had some material that ran one ounce per ton gold, which is generally considered high grade to fantastic grade depending on the circumstances.
How to go about the entire process of prospecting is a big question. The answer comes down to research and preparation.
...your sampling procedures should not be designed to catch gold your mining technique will never recover.
With the recent surge of interest in gold projects, it’s about time to revisit a subject that strikes fear into the hearts of small-scale miners: Permits.
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