Small-Scale Processing of Hard Rock Ores
December 2014 by Chris RalphDepending on the ore and if significant sulfides are present, a hard rock miner may be able to get away with simply using a flux to digest the other minerals that may be present.
Detecting is not very complicated and the rewards can be tremendous. The difference between success and fruitless toiling can be remedied by a few small adjustments and a whole lot of perseverance.
Several areas came to mind, but each was eliminated for one reason or another. One that seemed to be hanging on was the old historic mining town called Placerville.
I believe dry washing is an underappreciated prospecting method. There are plenty of places where there is some pretty decent gold to be had, but the spot is a long way from any water and dry processing may well be the best way to go.
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.
His take of gold was pretty close to what mine was—about a quarter of an ounce. We had just gleaned about half an ounce of gold in just twenty minutes.
We needed something to cook on, so we brought most of our kitchen with us including our full-size oven, which was pretty funny to see in the middle of a rainforest. Food was always a concern, but fortunately for us...
In my early days of nugget hunting things were fairly simple. Just headphones, a pack, a detector and a small pick were all I needed for my search for great wealth.
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