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  1. #1

    Black sand Question

    Does all black sand contain gold? I am asking mainly about black sand found on the bank of a lake.


  2. #2
    Mar 2003
    Minelab X-Terra 705 Keene 5" dredge
    37 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting

    Black sand Question

    Nope, just a good indicator is all, not as heavy as gold but close as anything that nature provides, Chris

  3. #3
    Mar 2003
    Cocoa Beach
    3 times

    Black sand and gold.

    You don't always find gold with black sand, but you will almost always find black sand with gold. Another good indication that gold might be present, is the desert Trumpet Plant. Again, you don't always find gold where there are Trumpet Plants, but most times you will find Trumpet Plants where there is some gold.
    "Him thief him friend of him last Guinea,
         Him kill both Friar and Priest, Oh dear.
             Him cut de troat of pickaninny,
                 bloody, bloody buccaneer."

  4. #4

    Apr 2003
    Inland Empire, CA
    GTI 2500
    6 times

    Black sand Question

    Bill, what is a Trumpet Plant and what does it look like? -Robert-
    Is that a jewel encrusted bottle cap?

  5. #5

    Mar 2003
    5 times

    gritty answer

    A lot of black sand contains gold but, is not profitable to process except in large quantities. If you're accumulating back sands from a 6 or 8 inch dredge or large trommel in "commercial quantities". you need to make a small mill. With a cutting torch, cut the baffles out of a used cement mixer and sand smooth. Then pour in about 10 gallons of back sand, add two or three 3" steel balls, add water to near the lip, and run constant for a day or two. Now pour off the excess water. It will be blood red in color. Add new water, and run for one more day. pour off the excess water again, remove the steel balls, add an ounce of mercury, add fresh water to the lip again, and run for a day. The amount of gold that will be in your amalgam will be a mind-blower. The gold may then be recovered by retort or acidation methods. Nuff Said, Hardpan

  6. #6

    Charge mercury

    Could you discuss with me just a bit this properly charged mercury? What is entailed and what is a proper charge?

    We use quite a bit of mercury in big tables but I do not recall the charging part.

    Thank you


  7. #7

    Mar 2003
    5 times

    black sands

    For those of you who are obviously new to mining: The milling of black sands is not to be confused with the separation of metals mixed among the sands. The Gold Magic spiral wheel, or any other brand of spiral wheel will not get the majority of the gold which is INSIDE the black sands. It will only pull out the fine gold that is mixed with the sands. The reason to use a mill is to crush the sands and physically separate the gold from inside the sands. At the same time, it cleans away any oxides or other materials which could prevent the gold from amalgamating with the mercury. New, clean, CHARGED mercury is easily purchased at the same price as used, or uncharged mercury.. Often, an equal or greater amount of gold can be milled from sands that have already been spiral wheeled. Nuff said, Hardpan

  8. #8

    Black sand Question

    Hardpan, your "milling" post contains a lot of truth.

    However, it is a misspeak to assume any metallic bearing material can be ground fine enough to release their values.

    I regularly mill to minus 200 mesh in order to perform standard wet chemistry testing for my clients.

    If all precious (and noble metal ores) were rendered available simply by milling first (known as free-milling) this world would be a lovely place and my job a whole lot easier let alone warp speed faster.

    I agree with you that it would never hurt to mill after either using a spiral wheel or amalgamating. However, I wouldn't wholesale mill any blacksands leftovers. I would construct a representative sample, and work with no more than a sample when testing for remaining values using wet chemistry.

    Refacing impellers is hard enough, no pun intended And ballmill balls eventually need replacing as well. Both of these are costly. No need to grind to minus mesh sizes every pan or bucket of black sands left over is my motto.

    There does come a point when maintenance costs become a factor in pursuit of values in black sands. I suggest wet chemistry testing of representative samples will mitigate those concerns.

  9. #9

    Mar 2003
    5 times

    Black sands

    Excuse me Megan, but we are not crushing ORE here, just black SAND. Most black sand concentrates are already 16 mesh or finer to begin with. (mine are) The gold is merely bonded in the magnetite, hematite, limonite, or other iron minerals that make up the black sand. I have even milled dredge concentrates from one location, that was mostly gold coated with manganese. Fact. Simple crushing of the black sand (not ore from a lode) in a home-made mill WILL release 98 percent of it's gold! I even know one guy that would hand grind his black sands up in a meat grinder that was bolted to the table in his garage. Funny, sure, crude too, but it worked.
    Again black sands are not ore. Ore comes from a hardrock lode mine. Black sands are the concentrates generated from placer mining. Compositions and hardness are different, ask any mining engineer. Also, it's a safe bet to mill all black sand concentrates that come from New Mexico, Arizona, or California. The rest of the country could be different, I don't know but, down here, it's a given. No testing to do, just recover the gold that's already in your hands or throw it away. Of course it would be fun to play with all those testing chemicals to assay a piece of ORE, if I happened to find one in the area, WHILE I was out placer mining, and recovering gold and black SAND.
    I paid $30 for a used cement mixer, and paid a welder another $30 for the ten minutes it took him to take out the baffles with his cutting torch. As far as resurfacing, or replacing the balls; if you're running the daily TONNAGE that it would take to cause that much wear and tear, then you as an individual, must be serious competition to outfits like Phelps-Dodge, Asarco, and Newmont mining corporations. By the way, I bought my balls at a local foundry in Tempe (Marathon Steel) in the early eighties for $1 per pound. They're still rollin'! My ticker will probably wear out before they do. And costly? yes, I guess if you're not willing to give up the price of a round of golf, it could be. I have about $80 invested in my mill that has lasted many years. I'd say it was well spent.
    If you'd like, I can post pictures of real gold ore, or of black sand concentrates for you. Best Regards, Hardpan

  10. #10

    Black sand Question

    she's a woman hardpan....you cant teach her anything...she already knows it all :lol:

  11. #11

    Black sand Question

    There seems to be some confusion regarding the usage of the term: "ore"

    AZ Dave, this one is for you and for Hardpan

    Main Entry: 1ore
    Pronunciation: 'Or, 'or
    Function: noun
    Usage: often attributive
    Etymology: Middle English or, oor, partly from Old English Ora ore; partly from Old English Ar brass; akin to Old High German Er bronze, Latin aes copper, bronze
    Date: before 12th century
    1 : a mineral containing a valuable constituent (as metal) for which it is mined and worked
    2 : a source from which valuable matter is extracted
    Therefore, I would suggest AZDAVE convince the dead Merriam and the dead Webster they erred when giving the two accepted definitions of the noun, "ore." Then, I'll fall in line...behind them apologizing profusely for their error from their respective graves.

    JCurts, allow me? IF the "source from which you are striving to extract 'valuable matter' happens to be a quantity of blacksands," I trust you will consider following lab ore sampling protocol described in my earlier post.

    Good Luck

  12. #12

    Mar 2003
    5 times

    Ditto, been there, done that

    Count me in with azdave's post, I'm the same way. Ditto! Tell it Dave, you go! Hardpan

  13. #13

    This black sand thingy

    Gee, boys and girls, I feel a bit edgy in the middle of all this. I just asked to discuss this charged mercury thing and got some answers. I respect every answer that is not a pure BS thing.

    I'm not new to mining but have been away from serious mining for about 30 years and just giving this recreational thing a shot although I do have a piece of ground off East of here that will put me on easy street before long. And I wouldn't spoof you a half ounce either.

    For some reason this charging thing bounced plumb off me even though I saw it used in large quantities and have even entered the contests to see who could get the farthest with a half a flash of mercury in a pack sack. That one makes the jumping frogs seem like good actors. You want to be real sober and real patient for the event.

    The gold they used mercury on was not even the fine stuff we see nowdays and squabble over but tables must have paid their way.

    I have spent a few afternoons with morter and pestle out on a hillside so am cognizant of that issue. Packed a quite efficient field qualitative analysis kit copied out of the book " Identification and Qualitative Chemical Anlalysis of Minerals." Great little pack around unit and answered most questions involving anything folks wanted to know about prospective ore.

    My life would be easier in some respects if I still had that kit.

    Well, take care, and don't go to hard on each other.

    Jcurts (Old Clunker)

  14. #14
    Charter Member

    Mar 2003
    So. Cal.
    217 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting

    Black sand Question

    That black sand part sounds pretty cool, I have saved mine for many years just to one day go through it. Once it is crushed up will it work just running it through an electric mini sluice or a gold magic, or do you need to actually use Hg on it to get it out from being mixed in with the sand?
    I am very hesitant to use Hg since it is a dangerous Neurotoxin and cannot be smelled or tasted. I'd just as soon leave this part alone. I know people who burn it off to leave the gold on a windy day, but I figure they are just polluting their back 40 with Mercury that will eventually get into their food, water, pets, etc. So,..... can I just pan it after I crush it?
    Oh, by the way, no thanks Megan, I don't need your advice, any other will suffice. wink

  15. #15

    Mar 2003
    Dunmore, Pa.
    19 times

    Black sand Question

    Coinshooter' I would think another way would be to disove it out in acid then filter and drop it out of the acid.
    Diggin The Trash :-)


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