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Small Mining Operations

Prospecting for Copper—What to Look for on the Outcrop

For the prospector, knowing what oxidized hydrothermal alteration looks like in the field is an important exploration tool.

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Extracting & Smelting Your Gold


Unfortunately, not all the gold that we prospectors find is pretty, or appealing to the eyes. They are not all nice, bright, shiny nuggets with lots of character that carry high collector value.

Putting Together A Small Free Gold Mill


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 Basics of Crushing and Milling Operations


In processing gold, silver and other valuable ores, the minerals containing the values, such as metallic gold, silver-bearing sulfides or other minerals, must be freed from the surrounding host rock before those valuable minerals can be captured.

All About Hard Rock Drills


There are three basic power sources for rock drills—electricity, gasoline and compressed air. Before we go into big pneumatic drills, we’ll start with a quick rundown of each.

Hard Rock University: Expensive Hobby or Real Business?


Improper sampling techniques lead to more avoidable heartache than almost anything else in micro mining.

Why Assaying Placer Gold Deposits Doesn't Work


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.

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How do I set up a Miller table?

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The Bawl Mill   • Ask The Experts - Where can I obtain chemicals for flotation?   • Ask The Experts - Can I get an update on your efforts in DC?   • Ask The Experts - What equipment do I need to enter an old lode mine?   • Hard Work Pays Off On Hard Rock   • The Mysterious Telluride Minerals   • Detecting: Getting Away From The Heat And Into The Gold   • The Coolgardie Gold Mining Camp of Southern California   • Gold Prospecting for Better or Worse: How Curiosity Burst My Platinum Bubble   • Dredging Tips and Tricks: A Measure of Water Pump Efficiency   • Hard Rock 101: Small-Scale Blasting   • Melman on Gold & Silver   • Mining Stock Quotes and Mineral & Metal Prices

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