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Posts posted by diggingbar

  1. Good point.

    Part of what I was emphasizing is that today, there are a remarkable number of small impact mills available on the market - made in the USA.  I don't believe many of these were available 10 years ago.

    These small mills can get the little guy into processing hard rock ore quite inexpensively.  Processing on the ultra, small-scale may only yield enough to just cover equipment and gas, but that's sometimes all placer mining covers.


    What I find interesting is there is not a corresponding number of U.S. made mini jaw crushers to accompany these impact mills.  It seems like there is a gap that needs to be filled.  


    I would also like to see a more affordable wave table offered.  From what I can gather, the wave table is perfect for small batch processing - more so than the shaker table, which prefers a steady flow and larger volume of material to work properly.  

  2. Yep, finding mineral specimens on mine dumps is fun and rewarding.  

    Of course, the gold specimens are a great prize and the rarest to find.  I don't have the patience to hunt mine dumps with a metal detector.  I know that's how the whoppers are found, but usually, there is way too much trash to deal with.  Instead, as you mention above, you can be a "diligent observer" and simply use your eyes… your free metal detector.


    Using a magnifying loupe (I like the cheap ones that are about 2 inches diameter over the tiny little jeweler's loupes) in the right location, you can sometimes find enough specimens showing "vg" to fill a bucket.  This material may not be showy enough to be specimen grade, but sure makes fine ore to process.


    I will add that if you are able to cut your specimens with a lapidary saw, then you can sometimes get a specimen to reveal much more gold than it was originally willing to do, thereby making it marketable.

  3. Interesting stuff on this thread.  I would like to solicit some further comment.  

    Both mine dumps and tailings piles are mentioned above, so I don't think this is about mill tailings.  

    So, you are talking about mine dumps or mine tailings that contain good values and are worth processing.  These dumps can contain all sorts of large waste rock and trash.

    Here's a question...

    Why would someone process an entire dump pile full of junk if they can sort out the waste?  I realize hand-sorting is time consuming, but if it could be done in a practical manner, then you would only be processing ore.  Many of the original high-grade mines relied on hand-sorting.  Is it not practical today?  Perhaps if it's not part of an automated/mechanized process, it's not even considered. 

    Also, it seems that the iron trash mentioned could easily be stripped out with an industrial-sized magnet like they use at recycling yards.  You sure wouldn't want to run pieces of ore track or drilling rod through your crusher. 

    I get a kick out of hunting mine dumps and finding ore to process in "mini-batches".  It must be free-milling and at least a couple oz/t.  That is the extent of my hard-rocking.  I realize you guys are talking about processing huge volumes, so my perspective comes from a low-volume, layman's level.

  4. I like the idea of "Hard Rock On The Cheap" and think one of you more knowledgeable guys should do an article on how it might be done.


    Just a few years ago, it seemed like it was pretty hard to find a mini impact mill offered.  I have one made many years ago called a Cyclone-Z.  I believe it was made by a guy named Hansen.  Today, there are a multitude of small impact mills out there starting at around $400 without motor.  Some of them are advertised in the ICMJ and some you can find just searching the web.  I don't know which of the newer offerings to recommend.  It would be nice to hear from actual users of these small mills.

    As far as discussing brands, that seems to be ok here, but links to products is viewed as advertising.  I'm fine with that.  We do need to be able to discuss specific equipment, including brands.

    I also have a mini jaw crusher.  It's about a 3"x3".  Sure beats sizing ore down manually.    I found it on ebay back in 2012 made by Golden Manufacturing Co.  out of Oregon.  I don't think they are in business anymore and I don't know of anyone today making a similar product here in the U.S.  Mine was under $300 and after buying a new electric motor and all the rest of it, it came to about $750.  I think that qualifies as a cheap jaw crusher.  Yes, you should screen after your primary crush and doing that manually is a p.i.t.a., but the bright side is that if your jaws are set close enough, you are actually crushing a percentage of your material fine enough to run that to recover values.  Of course, oversize goes to the impactor.