Q: Aside from the softness scratch test and other methods of identification, what feedback would you have on identifying gold in hard rock that may be mixed with other metals that affect its color?
Q: With safety as a given, what can the average miner, or Joe-blow greenhorn do to identify and extract some metals or minerals with off-the-shelf products or natural ingredients?
The solution focused on the relative difference in malleability between gold and waste, rather than the difference in density exploited by gravity circuits.
When doing your initial armchair research and selecting potential areas to explore, consider all the indicators, both natural and man-made.
Once a seam is found it can be traced for miles in either direction. While you are tracing a clay line, you are looking for indicators. The indicators that I look for are ironstone, hematite, different color clays intermingled with the clay line, and a very iron-rich, brown gritty soil.
A Wilfley table works best when all of the mineral being run across it (the pulp) is about the same size. For this reason, I took a good look at each of the samples.
I love to dry wash old nugget patches found by detector operators, and I have found my fair share of gold dry washing those areas. I have also found a few nuggets using a detector on the bedrock exposed by dry washing the patches.
I’d like to offer some practical comments about staking and maintaining mining claims. Owning your own claim is the dream of many prospectors. I’ve made good money off my mining claims, both from the minerals I have found on them as well as from leasing out some of my claims to larger mining and exploration companies.
Designing my own dredge...
Carbon, activated charcoal, or “char,” as some old timers refer to it, can be an assayer’s nightmare.
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.
• How do I separate silver from lead ore?
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.