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  1. #1

    Mar 2008
    New Lenox, Il
    Explorer II with 10x12 SEF
    400
    11 times

    Black sand on beaches

    I just came back from a vacation in the UP on Lake Superior and although the metal detecting wasn't that great due to overgrowth I noticed quite a few areas on the beach with black sand. Even when I dug some targets on the beach I noticed the black sand was down several inches. The area is pretty heavy with old gold mines, native copper and silver but is this worth digging up and panning?

    I did find what looks like a silver nugget on the beach about 14" down. Little smaller than a pea, rounded and smooth. VDI was telling me small ring on my M6. Anyway to field test to see if silver?

    Makton

  2. #2
    us
    Dec 2007
    Grayling, MI
    ACE 250/Bounty Hunter Pioneer EX
    366
    4 times

    Re: Black sand on beaches

    Was the sand magnetic?

    surfin
    You slept in peace last night because brave men stood ready to preform violent acts on your behalf!

  3. #3
    us
    Jul 2008
    Minelab
    178
    2 times

    Re: Black sand on beaches

    Only field test I know of without chemicals on a piece of silver like that is a scratch test. But if you dug it out of that kind of area, and it was a silver nugget, it would look like a silver coin that had been dug in that environment (oxidized). So if it came up looking like silver, I'd have to guess not. Even tho an area can be known for gold, copper, or silver doesn't mean that there will be pieces big enough to register on a detector. Of the precious metals, <2% is in nugget form. This is a guess and only a guess, since you didn't post a pic, but from the way you describe it, the area, and the VDI, I'd have to guess a piece of melted aluminum. They register in that area and do have a silver patina. Without a pic, that's my guess.

    Randy

  4. #4
    Flatlander bitten by the gold bug.

    Jan 2005
    286
    6 times

    Re: Black sand on beaches

    Makton, you may want to look at Chuck Lassiter's book on Midwestprospector.com he goes into some detail about finding color in the midwest.

    take a look at the glacial maps
    http://www.emporia.edu/earthsci/gage/pre-wisc/gmap0.htm

    Much of the area of the midwest has glacial till with gold from the Canadian plate from the last several ice ages. it can't hurt to put a pan to the material and see if any color comes up.

    Quote Originally Posted by makton
    I just came back from a vacation in the UP on Lake Superior and although the metal detecting wasn't that great due to overgrowth I noticed quite a few areas on the beach with black sand. Even when I dug some targets on the beach I noticed the black sand was down several inches. The area is pretty heavy with old gold mines, native copper and silver but is this worth digging up and panning?

    I did find what looks like a silver nugget on the beach about 14" down. Little smaller than a pea, rounded and smooth. VDI was telling me small ring on my M6. Anyway to field test to see if silver?

    Makton
    Gold is where you find it..

  5. #5
    us
    Feb 2008
    Kentucky
    White's MXT; backup - BH Pioneer 505
    573
    14 times
    Prospecting and coin shooting

    Re: Black sand on beaches

    I'll second the Chuck Lassiter book recommendation. Unfortunately, I believe he is sold out at this time. Still, there is a lot of information available on his website - www.midwestprospector.com

    Rather than silver, you might have platinum, zinc, mercury covered gold, or no telling what!

    Lookin
    Lookin' and pickin'!

 

 

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