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That unit looks extremely well built --but--have you looked at Bico Braun equipment--They used to be quite competative price wise and I used much of their equipment over the years with great results. Grind away--tons a au 2 u 2-John :thumbsupanim

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dave

while helping a geolgest in the lab preparing samples to be sent to assay we used a 2" jaw crusher and a plate crusher. we could prepare a lot of samples in a few hours. i am sure a lot more than the mini ballmill would do. i don't remember how many pounds we went thru in a day. it was a working small open pit silver mine and there were a lot of samples.

bill-cr

That unit looks extremely well built --but--have you looked at Bico Braun equipment--They used to be quite competative price wise and I used much of their equipment over the years with great results. Grind away--tons a au 2 u 2-John :thumbsupanim

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Just asking opinions..the Bico/Braun would be great but everyone wants a steep price for a used ball mill/crusher.Very pricey,even in this terrible economy.Would rather downsize the ore by hand and then pulverize in a small ball mill as my late partners and I used to do with a Gibson elyptical ball mill.Foolishly I sold it years ago...such is life.Thanks for the input..any comments or leads on a good ball mill/pulverizer,reasonably priced would be appreciated.In the California motherlode.......Dave

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40 years back, I knew an old fella that had a lode claim on a narrow quartz vein of free milling gold.

Vein ran from 6 to 18 inches wide.

Took him years to find/acquire the stuff to mine it.

Hand tram car.

Rail, fish plates, spikes, nuts/bolts.

83 Gardner Denver drill, jack leg, drill steel & bits

(in line oiler, hose, etc)

Compressor

Slusher & bucket, cable, etc

Vein has fairly vertical. So he drove the 4X8 drift next to the vein in waste rock, leaving the vein standing on the right wall.

He would drill/shoot 4 or 6 ft rounds, & muck out the waste rock.

Then, muck up & hand tram that barren rock out to his waste dump

Then, he would lay down a few steel muck plates next to the vein .

Then drill/shoot the vein slabbing it off onto the muck plates.

Then, hand muck the ore off the muck plates into his ore car & tram it out to his little ore bin.

By doing so, he cut the barren rock to ore ratio down by almost 90 %.

Once he had about 10 tons of ore stock piled.

He ran the ore through a small jaw crusher, to get it all to 1.5 inch minus.

Then, hand sorted out any specimen grade quartz, containing visible free gold.

Which, he later sold to collectors @ rock & gem shows.

Once picked over, he ran the remaining 1.5 inch minus through a small portable centrifugal impact mill.

Reducing the ore to about the consistency of flour.

Then, he would run those fines over a wet shaker table.

(no mercury amalgamation)

He recovered from ½ to about 1 ¼ ounce of free gold per ton of ore he ran over the shaker table.

The old timer died, EQT was stolen, USFS bulldozed the portal shut, end of story.

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Very good details old miner..that drifting has a familar edge to it,without the equipment..coyote holes,hand tools,mostly leave left side standing.That would be a lost mine worth finding.Those are the only type of lost mines I believe in.

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It's not lost.

I could pinpoint it on a USGS topo.

It's in the Quartzville mining district, in Oregon.

I camped near that old guys workings for about a week.

Had dinner with him a couple times.

I have stumbled over many like it, below quartz/gold outcrops.

Often shallow drifts, with only 40 or 60 ft of back to the surface, sometimes even less back.

Some on consistant bigger veins had second & 3rd levels below that.

Most were stoped level to level to the surface.

Most were shallow, because they only mined free milling oxidized ores, often supergene enriched.

Once they hit sulphide ores at depth, they could no longer recover the gold, without fine grinding & floatation, etc.

LOL, once in the Murray district in Idaho.

I fell in an open stope, but caught tree roots & pulled myself out.

Will never forget that one.

Setting on a log, near where the stope hit grass roots, after climbing out..

All sweaty, dirty & shaking, because I about got killed.

Waved my hat, to ward off what I thought were a few horse flies.

Turned out, was a hornets nest in the log I had set on.

Setting on it, I stirred them up.

Looked like a crazy-man... doing a war dance, tryng to run, jump, do cart-wheels & get the hell away from that hornet swarm.

Got stung about 20 times. NO FUN THERE. :tisk-tisk:

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Yeah Bill,I've checked that one out as another fellow was kind enough to link me up.A semi friend has a Keene I could buy for $700,but as far I know it's not hardfaced....Old miner,you've got the leprauchans on your side,but yellow jackets and their ilk aren't particular who they seek out.Have you tried to open any of those drifts,or claim them?Sounds like the places I love to sample and dig on.......Dave

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Hello Dave

Are you just looking to run samples for panning?

You still have to crush pretty small before running

in a ball mill.

If you are just crushing free milling ore for pan

samples or crushing vein material to release the gold

for recovery then you need a AG mill. They are faster

and will handle big chunks with the fines.

A ball mill works fine for grinding to a fine powder

or slurry.

The AG is bigger in diameter and has a short barrel.

They have a lot more drop,and you can use the large ore

and balls as a crushing medium.

If you are crushing for an assay,or melt,there is

several small cheap impact lab crushers on the market.

The impact crushers are high maintenance small volume

and only run small material.

An AG mill with a built in classifier screen will put

out uniform material,and can be fed as it runs.If you are

crafty you can set it up for classifying and making sorts

with a larger size machine.

A small ball mill or AG mill can be built pretty cheap.

A hexagon shaped barrel works the best for a small machine

too.

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Yeah Bill,I've checked that one out as another fellow was kind enough to link me up.A semi friend has a Keene I could buy for $700,but as far I know it's not hardfaced....Old miner,you've got the leprauchans on your side,but yellow jackets and their ilk aren't particular who they seek out.Have you tried to open any of those drifts,or claim them?Sounds like the places I love to sample and dig on.......Dave

I worked my way through collage, as a contract (gypo) miner in the CDA district of N. Idaho.

Have driven miles of drift & cross-cuts, raises, winzes & sank shaft.

So, I know (well) the cost of the eqt involved & how skilled labor intensive it is.

Used to be, if you owned a 12B mucker, slusher & bucket, jackleg & compressor.

Plus, all the other incidentals, you could set up & drive drift with minimal permitting.

Now, if you are not on a patented claim, permitting is often a 2 year pita, with reclamation bonding.

Not to mention, after 911, powder, det/spitter cord, fuse, electric, non-E primers, etc is a whole new ball game.

You have to have a blasting license, HUGE insurance, proper transport/storage/magazines & extremely strict accountability.

2 years after 911, I gave up my blasting license. Simply because my insurance premiums increased 50X.

I still did some blasting work, but under a corporate license, held by who I contracted with.

Given the PITA involved, the huge costs of EQT & the nature of the lode mining game.

The little guy is about SOL, when it comes to under-ground mining.

LOL, just the price of rail alone, will make a guy puke.

Most old workings lack rail, as scrappers pulled it out, for scrap steel.

What new rail costs, will make a good man, cry.

Sure thing, younger & dumber. I used a back hoe to open sloughed in portals & did a lot of sampling.

What I found was, the old timers missed very little.

Often, everything worth taking in the back was mined out.

Sometimes, there was ore showing in the bottom.

But, that required driving 100’s of feet of cross-cut through barren rock, to develop fresh reserves.

Even then, it’s still a gamble.

Moreover, old time miners often used shrinkage stope methods.

When they pulled out, they pulled all the broken ore out of those stopes.

Leaving everything hanging open, for 100’s of feet above you.

Which adds huge sums, just making the workings safe.

Others we found, with high/wide & handsome ore.

Had other problems, 1 in particular had hundred thousand tons of developed reserves.

Containing ¼ ounce gold & about 16 ounces of silver per ton.

But, ore contained so much arsenopyrite, no smelter would accept the concentrate.

Because it was so high in arsenic.

79/80 owned operated a patented placer & recovered on average 125 ounces a week for 7 ½ months.

(ended when we reached the property boundary)

To do that on a 300 to 400 yard a day scale, took about 1.5 million in wash plant, track & rolling stock.

Price out a Cat 235 excavator, 988 front end loader, D8 Cat, gravel screening plant, pumps, generators, dump trucks & all else involved.

You are looking at $2 million, before you turn a shovel full of muck.

I still look for another placer of that caliber, but let me assure you, they are very few & far between.

Back in the day, we used to truck in a backhoe, did bucket width trench, take a yard out of the bottom. Then, refill the trench,

(no permitting).

Once we had pot hole sampled a deposit.

We would pull in a little portable wash plant & wash those yards separately.

To get an idea, if it was workable ground.

Often, it was not.

Plus, that kind of sampling is a thing of the past, unless you are on patented ground.

Trouble being, most patented claim owners, want big bucks, to even let you sample.

Plus, bigger bucks, to let you mine.

Back in the day, a placer lease was 90/10, with 90 going to the operator.

Now, most want big up front $$$$ & 50/50.

Which makes it all a NO GO, anyway you look at it.

So, odds are better at a Las Vegas blackjack table, than large yardage placer mining.

Other than suction dredging, if you have good ground for that.

I have found a LOT of unmapped, unknown old drift workings.

Some just stub drifts. Others, where a LOT of work was done.

Which are probably worth opening to sample.

Trouble there is, try to work a deal with the claim owner & you will be shocked.

As few are realistic about what even might be there.

All want big bucks, just to allow you to spend big bucks.

To test their property. Ya right, I’m going to spend $100K like that, sorry no way.

Here is an example:

311245744_o.jpg

Caved adit, 120+ years old

311245716_o.jpg

Large dump, indicates lots of workings

311245768_o.jpg

Where I cleared off a part of the dump, by hand

311245777_o.jpg

Dump samples I found, showing free gold

Went up the hill, to the outcrop & found caved stoped to surface.

Meaning, they mined it from drift level to grass roots.

By the looks of everything there, a couple guys drove the drift.

Then, hand sorted ore & used mortar/pestle to recover gold from the high grade ore.

Remainder of lower grade (put still very high grade, at today’s price.

I gather was packed out by mule, or wagon loads.

As there was no arrista, stamp mill, or evidence of any other mill works there.

Just the dump alone, via 3 ten ft long grab sample bags full, ran near 1 ounce to the ton.

The last ore on the dump was still free milling.

Meaning, one could drop down the hill 100ft & drive in again.

All of which, I suspect would be on pay ore, once the vein was reached.

A kid owned the claim. He wanted $50K for it.

Would not let me open the adit, unless I bought the claim. (ya right)

Later, I found out the kid in a pinch for quick bucks, sold the claim for $2500.

Which, I would have paid, but the kid sadly lost my contact info & address.

New owner wanted $50K (ya right)

So, its always 6 ½ dozen, one way or the other.

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Greg,I'm not crafty,mechanical and of late not ambitious.Never seen the AG.Looking for a small unit that would run about 5/5gallon buckets of quartz in 2-3 hours or so and powder it to fines.Greg,why not build me one for $500 shipped(ha,ha)....Old miner,if you and 29 prospector got together you could put out quite a book!Been in contact with a fellow for a crusher..if it works out?But still need that powder maker.This would be mostly for my young partner Kuger as I'm falling apart.

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Greg,I'm not crafty,mechanical and of late not ambitious.Never seen the AG.Looking for a small unit that would run about 5/5gallon buckets of quartz in 2-3 hours or so and powder it to fines.Greg,why not build me one for $500 shipped(ha,ha)....Old miner,if you and 29 prospector got together you could put out quite a book!Been in contact with a fellow for a crusher..if it works out?But still need that powder maker.This would be mostly for my young partner Kuger as I'm falling apart.

Dave,

When my father and uncle started mining together, all they had was hand steel and a home made crusher. The crusher was made out of a piece of 8' water main with a 1/2 plate welded to the bottom. At the bottom they drilled very small holes (maybe 40-60 mest in size. My first job from around 4 years old was to help crush the ore they brought home. Hard, slow work but always kept us in beans when my dad wasn't working and always had money for new clothes. As time progressed we were able to purchase a IR 60lb. rotoray hamer, 2, 2 foot piecies of drill steel and 2, 3 foot pieces of drill steel. I think my father paid 150 dollars in 1953 for the above as well as the old 2-linger 225cfm compressor with blown motor. One year later we got a jack leg and it was off to the races. Send me a PM and explain to me what you want to do. I know your as bumged up as I am, but I've learned over the years, probably just like old miner, how to do it smarter and easier.

OL'29er :olddude:

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Old Gold Miner, your posts read like poetry,I know squat about hard rock mining or about gold for that matter, all I know it is laying out there in the dirt.

I too will something find, and Glory in the finding. I don't know who said that, but it has to be a old miner.

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I helped reopen a mine last year in Wenatchee, Washington, and we have good luck running our picked samples through a small jaw crusher passed to a roller crusher and then into several Lortone 14 lb. rock tumblers with 5/8" and 1/4" ball bearing media. The 14 lb. unit is entirely rubber and fairly quiet, and we batch grind the samples for about 3-5 days. The units are about 165.00 each and I found a couple on eBay in the 139.00 range. Perfect for lab size and extremely reliable. They are about 8x10" in size also, and have flattened surfaces molded on the inside.

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