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From reading the land to setting up your equipment

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.

Online Mining Classes Now Available at Mackay


The University of Nevada, Reno Mackay School of Earth Sciences and Engineering, Department of Mining Engineering has begun offering online courses for miners.

Iron Minerals, Your Detector and Gold


It’s worthwhile for the prospector using a metal detector to know a little bit more about the association of iron and gold as well as how iron minerals affect your metal detector.
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Customizing Your Dredge


I am going to suggest dozens of ways you can increase suction power, dredge to greater depths, and improve recovery methods in your sluice box.

Using Vegetation and Soil Conditions as Prospecting Aids


Wouldn’t it be great if you could know if there is gold in the ground without setting foot on the ground? Well you can, to a certain extent, if you can recognize mined ground from unmined.

Prospecting for Diamonds


Let’s take a look at diamonds and diamond mining and see how they form, how they are used beyond just jewelry, and what leads geologists to find diamond deposits.
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Ask the Experts


Questions regarding patented and unpatented mining claims and the legal rights surrounding them.

Ask the Experts


What is the best type of mat to use in a high banker set up?

Ask the Experts


How do I set up a small placer operation?
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Using Google Earth and Other Maps


Last month, one of our readers requested an article regarding the possible use of Google Earth for prospecting research. It was a good idea, so here it is.

Proper Assaying of Placer Samples


The whole purpose of sampling mineralized ground is to measure the values in a small volume of material that would be representative of a much larger volume of similar material. The key word is representative. Chemical and fire assaying will not accurately represent placer deposits by themselves.

A Data Miner Builds A Power Sluice


Data mining involves processing huge amounts of digital information to find hidden patterns and financial relationships. To executives, the findings are like gold, but on the weekends, I prefer seeing the real thing in the bottom of my pan.

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Charles P. Watson, Chief Geologist

How to Melt Your Own Gold


There are good and bad ways to melt gold. In this article, we’ll take a look at the right way to melt gold without losing any of the valuable metal.

Fine Gold Panning Without Using Mercury


The technique I will describe is a much safer alternative and it works. It’s a fine-gold panning technique that eliminates the need for mercury amalgamation of most placer samples.

Regarding "Good Assays and Bad"


Last month I wrote an article entitled “Good Assays and Bad,” which gathered a few comments.
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The Basics of Geophysical Exploration


In developing a mineral property or mining claims, one of the first goals is to identify and quantify valuable deposits. The classic method of doing this is by drilling holes into the ground to sample what is below the surface. The problem is that one or two holes usually are not going to tell you a whole lot...

Testing Ores for Free Gold


I get a number of questions from people about testing and treating hard rock ores. The simplest way, but also an expensive one, is to just have an assay test done by an independent assay firm. As an alternative...

The Fine Art of Panning Heavy Sands


The fine art of panning heavy sands requires a measure of patience. If you enjoy panning gold, you ought to enjoy this too, once you get the hang of it.
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Explosives and Mining


Explosives used correctly will save you both time and money being one of the best and most productive tools you can use.

Mining Claims—What to Know Before You File


During the initial assessment year (the year of location), the claim maintenance fee must be paid at the time the notice of location is filed with the Bureau of Land Management. Failure to pay the claim maintenance fee will void the claim.

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