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  1. #1

    Mar 2007
    100
    2 times

    best way to clean small gold nuggets and flakes

    what is the best way to clean small nuggets and flakes? especially the black in crevices and holes with out loosing metal from small flakes.
    thanks for your help. 49erjohn

  2. #2
    us
    Dec 2005
    Eugene, Oregon
    Fisher CZ5, White's GM VSat
    4,095
    85 times

    Re: best way to clean small gold nuggets and flakes

    Much like cleaning coins, cleaning nuggets and flakes takes away their character. I'd leave it, myself.

    If they're really nasty and encrusted you might wanna shine them up some with a tumble, but leave the black down in the cracks and crevices. You be surprised at how bland a perfectly clean nugget looks!

    Check these out- the one in the center has character, the others are blah..... The difference is pretty striking when you actually looking at them, not a scan.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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  3. #3
    us
    Dec 2005
    Eugene, Oregon
    Fisher CZ5, White's GM VSat
    4,095
    85 times

    Re: best way to clean small gold nuggets and flakes

    Of course, there are some really nasty ones, like this one Name:  black nugget.jpg
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    I have tried several types of acids with no effect. About the only way, and I haven't done it yet, would be to tumble with some good size rocks.
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  4. #4
    ca
    Feb 2007
    Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, Canada
    A Compass Magnum 420 recently brought back to life. And an untested "in the wild" Teknetics.
    512

    Re: best way to clean small gold nuggets and flakes

    Quote Originally Posted by 49erjohn
    what is the best way to clean small nuggets and flakes? especially the black in crevices and holes with out loosing metal from small flakes.
    thanks for your help. 49erjohn
    Hi 49erjohn;

    Read what it says about 3/4 of the way down this page under the section titled: "Things That You Can Use Acids and Bases For": http://www.prospectorsparadise.com/html/acids.html
    And further down the same page read; "Dealing with black sand".

    Actually you should read everything on that website if you get serious about placer, or hard rock mining and want to have high purity gold to sell. But, if you just want to stick to nugget hunting, then all the basics of the chemistry involved, are covered on that website.

    Finding a chemical supplier that is willing to sell the things like beakers and test tubes, etc isn't all that hard, but getting the chemicals might be more difficult depending on where your located. Some of the acids are easily obtained in small quantities, from places like: www.wholesale-scales.com
    And muriatic acid (aka: dilute (50%) hydrochloric acid), and other chemicals, can be found at most hardware stores.

    F.
    Quote of Sir Joshua Reynolds': "There is no expedient, to which a man will not resort; to avoid the real labor, of thinking."

  5. #5

    May 2006
    Oregon
    Goldmaster V-SAT, ACE 250, Lobo SuperTRAQ
    358
    3 times

    Re: best way to clean small gold nuggets and flakes

    I agree with Jeffro. Natural nuggets are a lot nicer looking in my opinion. Then again, that second pic of his is pretty crusty...

    What the heck is on that nugget? Is it even on it, or is it actually some crusty bit of the matrix the nugget originally came from?

  6. #6
    us
    Dec 2005
    Eugene, Oregon
    Fisher CZ5, White's GM VSat
    4,095
    85 times

    Re: best way to clean small gold nuggets and flakes

    I can't quite say for sure... I assume it's the matrix it came from. No acid even bubbles on it. Almost threw it out with my screenings, but I panned them down and this one acted funny in the pan. I actually had it in my fingers, ready to flick it when I noticed a dull glimmer of gold!

  7. #7

    May 2006
    Oregon
    Goldmaster V-SAT, ACE 250, Lobo SuperTRAQ
    358
    3 times

    Re: best way to clean small gold nuggets and flakes

    Heck, I'd take it. Ugly duckling and all...

  8. #8
    us
    Mar 2003
    Redding,Calif.
    3,968
    2299 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting

    Re: best way to clean small gold nuggets and flakes

    Bleach-sodium hypochlorite-will remove iron oxides quite well. Then straight ammonia works quite well with a overnight soak. Otherwise you can also give them a hour in a tumbler for a real shine and polish.Tons a au 2 u 2-John

  9. #9
    us
    Jun 2006
    California
    Whites new coinmaster-Teso Silver Max-Minelab GT
    1,800
    2 times

    Re: best way to clean small gold nuggets and flakes

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeffro
    Of course, there are some really nasty ones, like this one


    I have tried several types of acids with no effect. About the only way, and I haven't done it yet, would be to tumble with some good size rocks.
    have you tried some good old olive oil?
    Rob

  10. #10
    RTP
    RTP is offline
    us
    Aug 2007
    Mojave Desert
    Anything White's
    12
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting

    Re: best way to clean small gold nuggets and flakes

    I put them in a 35mm film container with a little heavy duty toilet bowl cleaner. Shake them real well, and then rinse with water. After you think they are clean enough, put them back in the film container with water and a little liquid dish detergent and shake real good again. Rinse one more time and they should look really good. If you don’t want to do all that, you can use an ultrasonic cleaner with some jewelry cleaner. This will clean all the dirt and whatever out of all the little nooks and crannies.

  11. #11

    Nov 2007
    ,M.X.T.& Tesoro Tejon
    9,708
    2650 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    Banner Finds (1)

    Re: best way to clean small gold nuggets and flakes

    Quote Originally Posted by mrs.oroblanco
    A drop of nitric acid will do a pretty good job of removing stuff, but personally, I like 'em au natural!

    B
    Nitric acid if you can get it!!!
    M.X.T , Tesoro Tejon



    "A pen in the hand of this president is far more dangerous than a gun in the hands of 200 million law-abiding citizens."

  12. #12
    us
    The Watcher

    Apr 2004
    Northern Nevada
    Dowsing Rods and a Ranger Tell Examiner
    7,820
    250 times

    Re: best way to clean small gold nuggets and flakes

    I put salt and vinegar in a small bottle and shake it. That’s all the cleaning that I do…You can put them in a pyrex bowl and put them on the stove at low heat and they will look richer...Art


  13. #13
    A swinger to the end!

    Nov 2007
    Trego, Montana, all over nevada and Arizona
    F-4, X-70, Delta 4000
    246

    Re: best way to clean small gold nuggets and flakes

    With lots of kisses!

  14. #14
    us
    Jun 2006
    Out in the hills near wherendaheckarwe
    WHITES, MINELAB
    2,103
    61 times

    Re: best way to clean small gold nuggets and flakes

    If you have trouble finding chemicals or smelting & assaying supplies etc try A&B prospecting in Mesa Arizona 480-832-4524 Really helpful folks.

    Muriatic acid can be found at your pool supply or even grocery stores. Red Devil lye will take some crusts off, or a product called oil eater in an uktra sonic cleaner. Sounds weird, but oil eater will clean hard water and cretian from coins that have been in water.
    I know it's here, just need a bigger coil!

  15. #15
    us
    Sep 2007
    Sal Sagev Adaven
    E-TRAC,,,, SOVEREIGN GT,,,, GP 3500,,,, GB PRO.
    2,925
    24 times
    Metal Detecting

    Re: best way to clean small gold nuggets and flakes

    Some of the prospectors I Know use limeaway.
    I'll just follow you with My E-trac, Sov GT,or GoldBug Pro.

 

 

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