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From reading the land to setting up your equipment

Proper Placer Sample Processing


...your sampling procedures should not be designed to catch gold your mining technique will never recover.

Using Sucker Guns to Find Gold


...if you have a good, rich spot, hand-operated systems can produce some decent gold.

Making Adjustments to Catch Fine Gold


This fine gold that is so common is probably the most notorious for eluding our riffles and mattings.
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The Subsurface Suction Dredge


The problems of the submersible dredge tube are addressed by the subsurface dredge, where the enclosed sluice recovery tube is suspended from a flotation assembly...

A Few Pointers About Cracks and Crevices


Because these crevices catch and hold gold so well, it's worthwhile to learn how they form, which ones are good for catching gold and which ones are not.

What, Where and How for the New Prospector


How to go about the entire process of prospecting is a big question. The answer comes down to research and preparation.
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Proper Spacing of Placer Sample Sites


The zone of influence of each sample must be carefully considered when deciding how far sample sites should be spaced from each other.

Hunches, Choices and Guesses


When you approach a location, even if you've been there before, you should consider all the factors and conditions present at the site. This includes both natural and man-made factors.

Placer Channel Sampling


Sampling gold placers can be rewarding, but remember to treat the samples so you are not high grading or low grading your results. Learn the rules and apply them so your samples are accurate.
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Breaking Rock the Old School Way


Prospectors have many reasons why they might want to break rocks. These include dividing up a specimen too large to carry.

Which Nugget Detector Should I Get?


The most commonly asked question in metal detecting is, “Which metal detector should I get?” People worry a lot about not getting the right machine. They do not want to waste their money and their time with the wrong metal detector.

Ask the Experts - proper mining claim procedures


Q: Can you offer any information on proper mining claim procedures?
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Charles P. Watson, Chief Geologist

Excavator Testing Wet Placer Ground


The excavator or backhoe has become the tool of choice for testing placer ground. These machines are the best way to explore and sample a placer deposit if the ground is not too wet or frozen and bedrock is not beyond the reach of the machine.

Hard Rock Milling: A Matter of Scale


Most prospectors understand placer mining a lot better than hard rock mining and don’t realize the amount of work that goes into processing different types of hard rock ore.

Turning Hobby Mining into Business Mining


The first thing a person should do is seriously consider whether they want to go mining as a hobby or a business, and the tax implications of the choice.
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Buying a Mining Claim: Questions to Ask


At one time or another, many miners will look seriously at purchasing a mining claim...Usually it’s a significant financial commitment, so how do you know if you are getting a good deal?

Refractory Gold Processing


After your excitement peaks when you first receive the high gold assay from the vein you just exposed, you ponder how you will extract and sell your gold. You will need to develop a flow sheet for your process to optimize your recovery and minimize your costs and permit requirements.

What is a Valid Mineral Discovery?


One of the greatest opportunities afforded to the citizens of our country is the right to stake and hold mining claims on federal lands. One doesn’t need to be a lawyer to stake mining claims, but a little bit of knowledge about mining claim laws can be helpful.
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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.

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.

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