Setting Up A Placer Operation
January 2022 by Don Robinson
Trommels come in two basic sections. The first section is called the scrubber unit. The second is the punch plate, where the gravels and ore of a specified size drop out into a variety of sluice box recovery units.
It is not necessary to have a PhD in geology, but you need to know the basics, so that’s what I am going to try to dig into here—the understandable basics of these gigantic gold deposits.
I researched the Internet and found a number of table makers, but technology has changed in the last 25 years. No one could sell me a kit for a new deck with wooden riffles...
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.
So far this year we have recovered over three pounds of gold and the hard rock veins seem to go on forever. We now have three claims that can produce good enough gold to set up a productive operation.
We were met with a plethora of mechanical problems with the dry washer and even a few with the excavator that were at times frustrating, but we were in this for the long haul, so we needed to solve these problems and move forward.
Another little gem of equipment he built was a nifty sample splitter. In order to get accurate assays, you need to have really good, representative samples for the assayer to process.
The gold was very chunky and much of it had quartz attached. Even back then I knew that the gold was very close to its source.
The Bawl Mill • Ask The Experts - Geophysics or drilling? Which is best for this project? • Ask The Experts - How closely are black sand and gold related? • Why Is The Gold On Bedrock—Or Why Is It Not? • Breaking Boulders With Explosives • Colorado to California for Gold • Historic Dredge Uncovered in North Carolina • Grizzly Flats, California—Another Mother Lode Gold Rush Town • Drywashing Without A Drywasher • Late Fall Drywashing • Melman on Gold & Silver • Mining Stock Quotes and Mineral & Metal Prices