How to Interpret Assay Values
January 2018 by Don Robinson
This assay system of ounces per ton sounds simple enough, but the use of the metric system and the additional measuring terms of “grams per ton” and “parts per million” (ppm) has created some misunderstanding of ore value.
Most small-scale miners want to know how they can set up a system much more cheaply. The difficulty is in the balance of putting together a decent small-scale system at a reasonable cost.
The first step in my recovery process after milling the ore to the desired size is to table it. On this particular ore, I get good results milling it to minus 100 mesh.
The whole purpose of sampling mineralized ground is to measure the values in a small volume of material that would be representative of a much larger volume of similar material. The key word is representative. Chemical and fire assaying will not accurately represent placer deposits by themselves.
There are loads of new gold prospectors attracted by the current high prices, and so I thought it might be a great time to take a look at what makes some prospectors so much more successful than others.
This is just the type of specimen that could have been easily ignored by the old-time miners. It felt a little heavier in my hand than a chunk of quartz of that size ought to have been.
Questions regarding patented and unpatented mining claims and the legal rights surrounding them.
The fine art of panning heavy sands requires a measure of patience. If you enjoy panning gold, you ought to enjoy this too, once you get the hang of it.
The Bawl Mill • Legislative and Regulatory Update • California: The Land of Big Nuggets—Part II • Bedrock Nugget Hunting: Tools of the Trade • A Primer on Bitcoin and Other Cryptocurrencies • Gold Hunting on Libby Creek • PLP and MMAC Update • Man's Best Friend • An Interview with Minelab Engineer Mark Lawrie • Third Largest Nugget in Existence Returns to Dallas • Melman on Gold & Silver • Mining Stock Quotes and Mineral & Metal Prices