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Alwaysdirty

Drywasher & clay

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Soon I'll have a drywasher in my possesion and will be heading out to an area I have sampled heavily. I found a real sweet spot, however the good stuff is under 18 inches of material that has okay gold and is real dry for a Drywasher, so no problem running that as I dig down.

My problem, is the one foot layer of great material on bedrock is a moist clay. I am going to spread it out to dry so i can run it.

But how do I break up the clay before putting it through the drywasher?

Anyone have any ideas other than using a rock crusher?

A small cement mixer?

I have metal fab skills, so making something would be an option.

The gold seems good enough to go through the effort of dealing with the clay, I think...

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a cement mixer and highbanker I think would work great. So rather than drying it out get it wetter. I notice that after that stuff gets dryed out it's like concrete

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Hey Alwaysdirty,

First determine if the clay carries gold, and if it is enough for all the effort involved to run it. Sounds like a real pain in the arse, and may not be worth it. Also determine if there is a pay layer on top of the clay. If so , then you can just run that material and skip the whole clay business. If there is gold on bedrock under the clay , then you will again have to determine how much gold and if it is worth the trouble.

When all else fails, look for a new spot :head: The idea behind drywashing is moving material. The more you move , the more gold you get. Keep it simple , with the least amount of steps possible. :brows:

What kind of DW you getting?

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Guy I was drywashing with threw it on a tarp and then walked around on it breaking up clumps as they were drying then raked it around and let it dry some more as he drywashed other stuff...Took him several days to get it dry enough but he got some good gold out of it. Good Luck

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Jim,

I was thinking about doing the tarp stomp to get it somewhat broken up, glad I'm not the only one to consider that.

Maybe get one of those jumping jack compactors and really stomp it! :ROFL:

Adam,

Heres the drywasher I found

http://www.nuggetshooter.ipbhost.com/index.php?showtopic=27003&hl=

The ground I'm on has gold on bedrock and in the clay layer. I don't find gold in the bedrock crevasses. Busted up a 2'x2' schist bedrock area and not speck in it, thought I was gonna hit the jackpot in the crevasses because the layer on bedrock was so good. :grr01: Thats in the bench though.

In the main dry gulch I find gold in crevasses.

The total depth of the bench is 2'-3'

The first layer is 12"-18" deep, has a little gold and is dry sandy.

The next layer being 12"-16" is more like A/B gravel, good gold, its moist, but dries fast and starts to gain clay towards the bottom.

The last layer on bedrock is a couple inches thick of clay and has great gold.

Something interesting is the middle layer contains this wierd rusty material 2"-8" in size and there is also very thick broken glass of different colors,green,purple,amber. This material has a few colors in every pan. There is some lode mines upstream so thinkin all the glass came from them. :oregonian_winesmiley: They must have drank alot mining :rolleyes:

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The old timers used "puddling boxes" to pound up the clay before sending it down the sluice ... I've tried several different ways ... The afore mentioned works ok with some surfactant (soap) .. The best is using a table spoon, putting it you mouth and chewing very thoroughly!!!! Gulp! Picker's 'll stick in your teeth and the fines, well, roughage in the diet works wonders ... Cheers, Unc

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Funny

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A driver for fence post with a steel plate welded to it works mighty fine to pulverize once dry. Size/thickness of the plate depends on your physical abilities but bigger does much more materials faster. The 2 handles makes it very doable and cheap at Harbor Freight-John

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Just remember that bricks are made when clay is dried ... granted real brick is cooked in an oven but clay when dry can be extremely frustrating.

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A driver for fence post with a steel plate welded to it works mighty fine to pulverize once dry. Size/thickness of the plate depends on your physical abilities but bigger does much more materials faster. The 2 handles makes it very doable and cheap at Harbor Freight-John

Good idea, one of those landscaping square tampers would probably work well too.

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Take a 1/2 inch metal wire style classifier on top a 5 gal bucket,....shovel or break up the clay to size it will go into classifier have some larger rocks and stones in the classifier an shake it up to pulverize the clay balls/pieces.
Takes some elbow grease but works.
Nobody said drywashin was easy.

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I can see Unc Ron has been standing in the hot sun again !!! I made up a framework of 1/4" hardware cloth and set it over my drywasher and rubbed the clumps back an forth over it to break them up. Be prepared to wear out several pair of gloves doing this.

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I've used a cement mixer as a concentrator before . Point it Up. Fill and run dump out the top half and fill again again and again.

Keep the bottom third to pan. Worked for me. I'm thinking it would work with the clay if you ran it long enough.

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Shay:
Ive taken clay and soaked it in 5 gallon buckets then run it through my trommel.

That worked great.

But out in the desert you may have to just bucket it up and take it home to process it.

Then see if its worth it or not.

Or we could just buy a big water truck and take the trommel up there :)
Cya on Sun.

Tom

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Shay if you're not recovering 3+ grams a day from all this work simplify and move on. Pm me for more details...

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Shay if you're not recovering 3+ grams a day from all this work simplify and move on. Pm me for more details...

Well Dayam BD share !!! I would love to get 3gr a day but please keep these days short. I'm not as young as I used to be :old:

P.S.. I will be in Yarnell come Sept. dont tell me. SHOW me

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Shay if you're not recovering 3+ grams a day from all this work simplify and move on. Pm me for more details...

Whoooaaa... now hold on there just one minute. Are you suggesting that a guy would be wasting his time if he only found 2 grams a day? :arrowheadsmiley:

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$40+ a gram at todays prices. Economic viability in constant state a flux with varying prices,sure miss $1,800++ :200: John

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$40+ a gram at todays prices. Economic viability in constant state a flux with varying prices,sure miss $1,800++ :200: John

AMEN JOHN, so do I.

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Whoooaaa... now hold on there just one minute. Are you suggesting that a guy would be wasting his time if he only found 2 grams a day? :arrowheadsmiley:

YES ! There is so much fine gold out there , just find it ! Our last trip was paying 9 grams a day...But that means you have to run buckets..If you cant do that, then your just prospecting......

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Thanks Adam could not of said it any more plainly than that.

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Dude, we run more material than most people could fathom. Hit the right spot and they will be rewarded....

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YES ! There is so much fine gold out there , just find it ! Our last trip was paying 9 grams a day...But that means you have to run buckets..If you cant do that, then your just prospecting......

You're right Adam… there's still tons of gold yet to be found, and that's exactly why I'm in the research/prospect/sample mode right now. I figure why waste my time digging or detecting for a few grams here and there at all the well known tourist spots, when I have the ability and the equipment to get off the beaten path, and sample/prospect areas that could possibly give up many ounces per day. I'm going for the JACKPOT! If I never find it… then at least I'll have a lot of fun trying! :D

Just out of curiosity… is that 9 gram per day location you guys found still paying out, or are you on to bigger and better things?

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That is why dredging is so good. A person by them self can run many many yards of material in just hours. No gorilla arms needed!

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Adam & BD, you two are way beyond the league of hobby miners ... I'm surprised there's any gold left in Arizona after you two gold getting monsters pass through ... Not everyone can run 900 buckets a day! .... :Diggin_a_hole: Keep up the great work ... (Adam, did your 2+ ever sell on eBay?) ... Cheers, Unc

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