Jump to content

Recommended Posts

Some members may consider it an important comparison to compare the economics of mining then and now. :)

 

What were the costs and revenues then? example: 1930-1938

 

What was the profit/loss P/L then compared to now?

 

- Geowizard

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Geowizard,

 

1938 compared to 2010

 

"In 2010, a cut was made in the third bench and half of a million dollars worth of gold was recovered in two weeks. I refer to that cut as cut 1 or the "nugget patch".--Geo

"Ophir has produced 1000 ounces of gold per year over a 70 year period."--Geo

 

 

This may be redundant, however, your Ophir project is sounding too good to be true. I'm wondering if you can compare gold for gold, then and now?  How do the 2 P&L pencil out?  What do they teach us?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The math is pretty simple. :)

 

Ophir production was 70,000 ounces of gold. It operated in production from about 1910 to 1980. Average production was 1000 ounces per year.

 

We don't have profit/loss figures.

 

What they teach us is hard work may be profitable. We don't know what the cost was - so we cannot calculate the profit.

 

- Geowizard

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"In 2010, a cut was made in the third bench and half of a million dollars worth of gold was recovered in two weeks. I refer to that cut as cut 1 or the "nugget patch".--Geo

 

Yup?

 

That's it?

 

The ability to inspire belief might be considered subjective.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Do the math; :)

 

Volume mined:

 

$500,000 production from $25 dirt = 20,000 cubic yards.

 

The cut is 100 yards x 100 yards x 2 yards = 20,000 cubic yards.

 

Rate of mining:

 

They mined 20,000 cy @ 150 cy per hour =  20,000/150 = 133 hours = 16.7  days.

 

- Geowizard

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Equipment:

 

Caterpillar 235 Excavator with a 1.5 cy bucket (1.25 cy useable)

 

Excavator loads feed hopper @ 1.25 cy every 30 seconds = 150 cy per hour.

 

The feed hopper and conveyor capacity was 3 cy per minute = 180 cy per hour.

 

D8N pushes 9 - 10 cubic yards with U-Blade approx. 1 push to excavator every 4 minutes.

 

- Geowizard

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Gus's operation used the D7 Dozer, Giant, Sluice, Dragline.

 

He pushed gravel to a sluice box with the D7. A Hydraulic Giant washed gravels into the sluice mounted on the ground. 12 men shoveled rocks and gravel down the sluice box. A 1.5 cy Northwest #4 Dragline stacked the sluice tailings. Operations would run double shifts when practical.

 

The dragline and dozer were used for stripping also.

 

- Geowizard

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Rod,

 

You said; "The ability to inspire belief might be considered subjective."

 

I think that's where you keep getting confused.

 

Never confuse truth with the facts. They're two different things. Truth is based on belief. Belief systems are subjective.

 

The facts stand on their own.

 

But, this thread is about economics - not "belief systems".

 

We can start a new thread on "Subjectivity of belief systems" next to "The Art of Dowsing" if you want. :)

 

- Geowizard

 

 

OK Geo,

 

I tried.  Your sophmoric propensity to project rudness and insults prevails.

 

Good luck on your endeavors.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Rod,

 

I started this topic, to provide discussion on "economics of mining - then and now." :)

 

Then you slipped off into; "The ability to inspire belief might be subjective"? . What does that mean?

 

I don't understand what "inspiring belief" and "subjectivity" have to do with economics of mining.

 

If you want to begin a "new topic" on subjectivity and belief systems, then we can start a "new thread" on the subject. 

 

I'm not being rude, just trying to keep the topic "on topic".

 

- Geowizard

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Karl von Mueller reprinted USBM IC 6786, IC 6787 and IC 6788 Placer Mining in the Western United States.

He titled them as Placer Miner's Manuals Volume 1-3.

These are still available through a few web book sites at modest cost.

Inside you'll find a wealth of information including detailed costing for several types of placer mining.

Keep in mind that during these studies, official gold price was $20.67USD/ozt.

These were published during 1934-1935.

--------------

Now I'm editorializing.

These Information Circulars are based upon a lot of assumptions. Among these is the definition of experience levels.

As an example, in IC6786 on page 48 the authors stated that, "... an experienced man can wash about 10 pans per hour." This is for a standard 16" pan. The authors go on to state on the next page, "... a man could pan about 1/2 cubic yard in a day. With exceptionally clean gravel a man will sometimes pan as much as a cubic yard a day."

I do not consider myself exceptional and the material I have is cobble/boulders heavily loaded with glacial silt. I can consistantly do better than a yard per day.

Other considerations are just how honest and open were the miners that the authors interviewed?

The costing might have been accurate, maybe.

Little information is given about actual recovery by the miners.

There is mention that hand-miners averaged $1/day in recovery with the most experienced recovering up to $3/day.

Then we must consider the author's prior knowledge about placer mining. Did they know enough to ask the right questions? Were they experienced enough to know when they were getting their leg pulled? I would assume there is a high probability that inaccuracies were put into print such as panning rates.

What can be reasonable assumed is that placer mining during the depression fed a lot of folks in the west. This is based upon the USBM tasking the authors to research, write 3 information circulars and rush them into circulation by 1934-35.

And please don't drag out nonsense about Roosevelt repricing gold to $35/ozt at the time. Doing so would only prove how little you understand about the USGPO printing process in the 1930s.

I would most certainly buy the set of ICs again. If you are close to a college that offers degrees in geology or mining engineering, the library probably has copies tucked away. Go check them out.

Older technology is not in and of itself evidence of obsolescence. Burlap still works very well as sluice bedding. It is just a bear to clean.

I haven't looked to see if they are online.

In this trade, a thorough knowledge of mining history in your area of interest pays dividends.

eric

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks Eric,

 

I think you hit the bull's eye.  Credibility.

 

The reports of gold recovery are many times fiction.  Who has proof of what transpired in the wilderness?

 

Today we can communicate and document like never before.  It's a vast improvement over the circumstances of the 1930s.

 

However, do we continue to irresponsibly promote our self interests?  Of course we do.  A heavy dose of skepticism is as valuable today as ever before. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Rod Seiad, on 23 Nov 2013 - 08:42, said:

Thanks Eric,

I think you hit the bull's eye. Credibility.

The reports of gold recovery are many times fiction. Who has proof of what transpired in the wilderness?

Today we can communicate and document like never before. It's a vast improvement over the circumstances of the 1930s.

However, do we continue to irresponsibly promote our self interests? Of course we do. A heavy dose of skepticism is as valuable today as ever before.

You credit me with too much.

Documentation helps determine credibility. See NI 43-101

However, documentation only means a paper trail. See Bre-X

Recovery is usually kept quiet if it exceeds cost and the operation is not corporate. Recoveries aren't left in the wilderness.

In cases where the recovery is far less than costs, see Mark Twain's definition of a mine.

Communicate? In most cases we only communicate opinions we plagiarized or are obviously ridiculous. Usually plagiarization is foremost. Folks are intellectually lazy and shop around until they find an opinion they agree with and then claim it as their own. Plagiarizing is theft.

Better than the 1930's? That is an unfounded statement. Please submit your evidence supporting that contention.

Of course we tend to self-interest. But using the term of "irresponsibly promote"? Mr. Ron Seiad, you have lost all credibility as far as I am concerned with that line of unfounded nonsense. Who are you to determine what is or is not irresponsible promotion? Do you demand the worker offers all their efforts for free?

Fly in on your own nickel. Pack your own picnic basket. You might wanna take along a #2 shovel and a pan. Ooo and better take some bug dope, a blue tarp and a 12 gauge loaded with slugs. Never been to Ophir, but I was detailed to helitack out of McGrath DoF station more than once. You just gotta check out their log sauna and mini 3-hole golf course. Admittedly that adventure was a decade or two ago.

Skepticism is called "due diligence."

-------------

The recoveries from the Ophir area of the Innoko district might be in error, but that error would probably be on the low side.

In other words, under reported. For general overview of recoveries and potential, see USGS B-1374 for placer and USGS B-1246 for lode deposits.

More specific information is available on the USGS site as well as the Ak DGGS site.

I would contend that lacking any specific knowledge of the subject calls into question any opinion trotted out on that subject.

But I'm just a cantankerous old codger that had to learn my lessons the hard way. Hard way defined as willing and eager to pay the high price of tuition in the college of experience.

The odds are that if someone said it couldn't be done, I probably provided compelling evidence supporting that statement.

But along the way, I disproved several unfounded claims. And like geowizard, I offer them at no cost. We....ll not really. He probably got paid by ICMJ for his article(s). But I won't begrudge a worker their just wages. And admittedly, I have been paid by other magazines for my articles (73 Amateur Radio Today and Whole Earth Catalog are a couple).

In summation, credibility goes both ways. So I would offer two suggestions for consideration.

Caveat and cui bono.

Please do not confuse my comments as an expression of unfounded arrogance. I frankly don't care as I'm old, plumb worn out and no longer energetic enough to stroke just any and every grown adult's ego. I do make exceptions, care-wise, for younglings and folks that can get off the couch.

eric aka overtheedge

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

All of us at the end of the day must search our soul and ask; "Was the end worth the means?". :)

 

What's in your wallet at the end of the day is the net result of the toil taken to reach the "end of the day". As eric often expresses in his manner of candid satire; "Another day in Paradise". Everyone must use a certain amount of introspection and ask if what we are doing is sane. In the real world of design, projects are given occasional review and "sanity checks" take place. Mining is hard work and it takes its toll. The design - the plan should take into consideration the wear and tear on the machine - the man that harbors the ambition, the drive and the focus that makes it all happen. All too often, the personal net cost is not factored into the balance sheet.

 

I suspect that as usual, most of the miners arrived with little or nothing and left with little or nothing and could only reflect on the personal feeling of having worked their tail off and at the end of the day evaluating their own feelings and emotions after having subjecting themselves to such abuse! Others want to hear the story. Younglings lean forward to listen to Grampa...  

 

The frailty of mankind is that we are generally optimistic. I call it a frailty because we unwittingly expose ourselves to a mission of potential hopelessness and despair at the behest of a delusion of grandeur.  Grampa cannot explain that part to a youngling. 

 

Today, we speculate on how much gold was spirited away. In the early history of Ophir, the town had a general store. Accounting for the amount of gold that was produced was based on how much gold was presented at the store for use in payment for supplies. Most of the miners probably considered themselves fortunate if they recovered enough gold to purchase provisions to sustain themselves. If there was surplus gold, it was probably spent on additional shovels and additional labor. All of that gold eventually wound up at the general store. A commissioner would regularly check with the storekeeper to get a tally on goods sold. Rudimentary as they were, accounting systems were in place.  

 

- Geowizard

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks eric you've done it again,

 

"Better than the 1930's? That is an unfounded statement. Please submit your evidence supporting that contention."...eric

Lacking in reading comprehension oldtimer?

 

I said...

"Today we can communicate and document better than ever before.  It's a vast improvement over the circumstances of the 1930s."
Any question?

 

When someone misconstrues or fabricates a separate reality by accident, all is forgiven.  You just proved that.

 

I do thank you for the correction and I will refrain from applauding your reasoning.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"Today, we speculate on how much gold was spirited away. In the early history of Ophir, the town had a general store."...GEO

 

 

 

Yes, you're correct and that is my point here.

 

Until the gold is brought up into the daylight, it's speculation.  Until we receive an accurate and documented accounting, it's speculation.  Wouldn't you consider that an irresponsible path to making an informed financial decision? 

 

Your real life story describing Ophir, AK in present tense, is outstanding.  I've encouraged you and urged you to go for it.  Thankfully, due to the ICMJ, lots and lots of us get to share your adventure.  That's good all the way around.  You've repeatedly asked for comments and several of us have chimed in.  Surely you realize that you're affecting many people's hopes and dreams.  I only ask that you take care and appreciate what a strong impact your winter work on this forum, is.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Rod said; "Until the gold is brought up into the daylight, it's speculation. Until we receive an accurate and documented accounting, it's speculation."

 

Then, Rod asked; "Wouldn't you consider that an irresponsible path to making an informed financial decision?"

 

----------------------

 

Rod, frankly, I don't understand the question.

 

First of all, speculation is what prospecting is all about "pro-specting". Having a positive view +/- speculating and/or involving speculation and looking. What does "making an informed financial decision" have to do with prospecting?  

 

Ask a prospector - Wouldn't you consider that an irresponsible path to making an informed financial decision?

 

 "Surely you realize you're affecting many people's hopes and dreams."

 

Everyone should have their own hopes and dreams. I don't assume liability for "hopes and dreams". Please don't hand me a mixed bag of "hopes and dreams" and think that I will in any way assume responsibility for "affecting" them. Hopes and dreams are the fruit of imagination. Imagination is a great thing.

 

Old timers that entered into the business of mining received a dose of reality. Today is not much different. "Hope" doesn't put the shovel in the dirt and "dreams" don't put the metal in the pocket. 

 

- Geowizard

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You said...

"Rod, frankly, I don't understand the question."

 

-------------------------------------------------

 

Rod said; "Until the gold is brought up into the daylight, it's speculation. Until we receive an accurate and documented accounting, it's speculation."

Then, Rod asked; "Wouldn't you consider that an irresponsible path to making an informed financial decision?"

 

-------------------------------------------------

 

OK, sure if you need to redefine the topic,  I suppose you can't understand the question.

 

Right now on this thread, the sublect matter is...........

 

Some members may consider it an important comparison to compare the economics of mining then and now. :)

What were the costs and revenues then? example: 1930-1938

What was the profit/loss P/L then compared to now?

 

- Geowizard

 

 

_______________________

 

There's no need to begin with mining and then flip to prospecting.  Mining assumes a discovery is now being harvested and prospecting means discovery is being sought. 

 

Don't count your chickens before they hatch.  Agreed?

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×