Placer Sampling for the Small-Scale Miner
October 2021 by Chris Ralph
I have seen many samples taken originally with an eye toward getting the highest grades possible, but later someone claims that those results represent an average grade of the whole gravel deposit.
The placer deposits of Utah occur in two distinct types of environments. These are 1) placers found adjacent to, and derived from, gold, silver and base-metal deposits; and 2) placers found in major rivers and derived from unknown, distant sources.
The first location we worked was a small, dry ravine cutting through many mineralized zones in an area where some hard rock mining had taken place in the past.
The first thing I realized was this was not a toy—this thing had power and I needed to really pay attention. I got into position, took a deep breath, and pushed that monster into the hard pack.
When he got home that night, he looked at the plotted points of gold and trash he had dug and saw that there was a distinct line where the gold nuggets were being found.
Lately I’ve been having success utilizing two types of detectors in succession. The first is a pulse induction (PI) detector with a blanket-style antennae, and I follow it up with a very low frequency (VLF) detector.
Whatever system you plan to use will require a way to safely initiate the explosives from a distance. In this article, we’re going to learn the basics of electric blasting and get a hands-on example…
...these nuggets have not traveled far from the lode because the golden wire lattices would have been torn apart or flattened during weathering of rock and deposition by violent stream action.
The Bawl Mill • Ask The Experts - Is the trumpet plant a good indicator of minerals? • Ask The Experts - Why won’t my detector respond on wire gold? • Ask The Experts - Should I be able to locate gold near old volcanoes? • Secrets of Gold Research and Why You Need It • Detecting 'New Again' Spots • The Miner’s Theme Park: MINExpo 2021 • Downieville: Another Gold Rush Favorite • Gold Prospecting for Better or Worse: The Disappearing Nuggets • National Mining Hall of Fame Names 2021 Inductees • Lithium Fuels Hopes Around Salton Sea • Melman on Gold & Silver • Mining Stock Quotes and Mineral & Metal Prices