Small Mining Operations
On my weekends off I spent many hours dredging the Second Broad River from Cane Creek Road up to the headwaters. I used a three-inch dredge with air and graduated to a five-inch with air.
Silver refining has been used from ancient times to change the characteristics of the metal. Early metallurgists refined silver by heating it a couple hundred degrees above its melting point and holding the metal at an elevated temperature for a period of time.
It was time to prime the pump and start the engine! Dan’s priming method is to use a small, submersible, 12-volt pump. My priming method is to use a hand-operated diaphragm pump.
“The evidence is clear—mineral deposits alone are not enough to attract precious commodity investment dollars...”
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.
Not long after this, I was camped out with the geologist beside the Similkameen River where he showed me the evidence that an ancient channel existed on our claim.
I pulled out the nuggets I had worked on previously and looked at the size of the wire basket that the items to be cleaned are placed into. It looks much like a miniature french fry deep fryer.
We’ve been busy with a plethora of projects, all aimed at gathering gold into a pile big enough to brag about. We’re not there yet, but I’ll show you some of the interesting projects we’ve completed since we talked last.
I have figured out over the years that the winning combination is hard work, persistence, knowledge, and a little luck. This leads me to describe one of my best finds ever, a “honey hole” of placer gold, if you will.
My partner had the contacts and it wasn’t long before we had an agreement in place and the company had a geologist on site. I recall a time when he was getting the lay of the land, so to speak, and he broke off a rock sample and inspected it with his magnifier.
Solar energy can be used for any size placer or hard rock mining operation. It is most practical for small and longer-term operations provided your mine is not located in a dense forest.
Now it was time for the nerve-wracking part of the job: actually removing anything from the hanging wall we deemed to be in need of removal because it was either loose, could be loose, looked loose, or we felt it was just downright dangerous
…we cheered and high-fived each other as the ore cart slowly crested the top of the headframe, then picked up a bit of speed on the short downhill section and came to an abrupt halt, ejecting its contents of ore…
Let’s take a look at these important property aspects individually, because they all affect the value of a property and how much mining companies might or might not be interested acquiring it.