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Mooch3597

Commercial Drywasher

16 posts in this topic

Production Drywasher

 

Looking for any information on a commercial scale dry washer. I have a claim in the Arizona desert with absolutely no water. I have considered hauling in water for a recirculation system, but such a system would be very challenging, and expensive,  to set up. A production scale dry washer, 5+ yards an hour, would be the ideal piece of equipment to use at this claim since all water has to be hauled in. Any ideas on how to fabricate or purchase such a thing?

 

Thanks

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I personally don't know of anyone producing a commercially made larger scale dry washer as you describe.

I know of several large scale dry washers that have operated in Australia, but these were individually fabricated by the owners.

You could go with a vibratory screen system that split the output into several lines and then each line feeds into an existing larger model of dry washer as are currently available for purchase.

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Reno,

Do you have any photos of the large dry washing plants (dry blowers) you saw in Australia?  

 

Were they just larger versions of the ones we are familiar with here in the U.S. or were they very different in their mechanics?

 

Why do you think no one here makes a large, commercial-size dry washer?  Is the gold recovery just too poor to justify and therefore miners just do what it takes to get water to their site and work wet?

 

Interested in your take.

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Most dry placers are small and spotty, so the set up of a larger scale operation is rare as the resources are soon consumed. There are just not many areas here in the US that could support such an operation for the longer term such that it would pay for the capital equipment cost to get started, so I just don't see the demand here. Operators in Australia move around and process different areas and gold patches. Its how most of the successful small scale dry washers have historically worked here - find a good spot, work it out and then go find another productive spot.

I did not get any photos of the Aussie large dry washers, they looked a lot different as they were designed to be fed by front end loaders. In a lot of ways, they looked like the new Keene dry washer box if you want a smaller scale comparison. The mechanics on the inside of screened gravels floating over a cloth sluice with air coming up from underneath was the same.

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There was one similar to this one, working southeast of Quartzite, Arizona in the Plomosa Mtns 20 years ago. The did well with it. They fed it with a front end loader. so it can be done. Dry washers set up correctly don't loose as much gold as folks think they do.

 

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Not sure if it helps any, here is a picture of the remains of a very old (1930's?) drywasher at the Ryepatch area of Nevada. As I recall, it had three bellows in parallel underneath it. Not sure how the conveyor system worked. Next time I'm near there I'll take some more pictures, but a lot of the parts are missing.

Drywasher_zps77dywqtz.jpg

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Thanks for all of the replies.

 

Many desert areas I have seen are pretty spotty so a larger operation probably could not be supported in most circumstances. However, a larger sized dry washer, somewhere around 5+ yph, would be ideal for some desert locations. It could be set up relatively easily and some water could be used for dust control. I have permits to use heavy equipment on a mining claim I have. A small excavator could be used to feed a large scale dry washer very easily. A trommel or other type of recovery system is feasible, but does not make complete economic sense due to having to haul water to the sight. Once an area was worked out, it could be moved to another area easily if it was trailer mounted. I think its worth trying to build a unit with several of the larger dry washers used on the market today, but with little metal working experience, it would be kinda an unrealistic project for me. 

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Geowizard,

 

Yes we have done some pretty extensive sampling. We initially found several grams on the property and then staked a small 20 acre claim. We eventually filed a plan of operation so we could use heavy equipment to excavate the hard rocky dirt.  From then we have been using a Keene 151 dry washer to do some bulk samples. The purpose of this process is to see if the claim could support a larger operation(large scale dry washer, trommel, etc). Testing has been slow due to work and other activities. Results have been borderline on whether we should scale up or not. We have been finding only course gold which is found inconsistently so it is complicating results.  Dry washing can actually be very effective if the unit is set up correctly. We have tested the 151 with fine gold and consistently captured 85% of all gold. 

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Great Video!  

Can you tell us more about the dry-blowing unit?  Did you build or buy it?  Looks like it works well.  

 

Thanks for sharing.

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no problem

 

mine I got made up locally by an old guy who has been making them on and off over the years mine is about number 30 he has made over the years so has been fine tuned. The trays run on a bellows system works welI get about 60% recovery some fines are lost through gold being caught up in little clay balls or if ground is not very dry, there are a few units that run a trommel / scrubber they get a better recovery on very fine gold. these units are much bigger than mine and have a higher through put - also a lot more to go wrong and cost more to build.

there is a 6 tray version which will run 15tph which in hindsight would be better

 

cheers Tom

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Production Drywasher

 

Looking for any information on a commercial scale dry washer. I have a claim in the Arizona desert with absolutely no water. I have considered hauling in water for a recirculation system, but such a system would be very challenging, and expensive,  to set up. A production scale dry washer, 5+ yards an hour, would be the ideal piece of equipment to use at this claim since all water has to be hauled in. Any ideas on how to fabricate or purchase such a thing?

 

The LDMA  Duesenberg site the local caretaker has a nice commercial size dry washer he built.  I am sure he would show you how he did it.  He moves an easy 5+ yards an hour very effectively on a private claim he has.  I don't remember the name but I am sure I can locate it.

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I know Keene has been working on a larger scale dry washer that would be fed by hydraulic equipment. Its been a while since I heard an update on their progress. 

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