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Anyone know much about blasting?

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I'm new to the site, and I'm relatively new to gold prospecting, but I'm learning fast. I've been researching and prospecting in the California back country full time since Jan this year (2015).

I'm wondering about blasting. I understand there is a contractor's license for blasting, so I was thinking that if I get that specialty qualification stamped on my license (I have a contractors license), I only have to legitimize my claim, and I can blast.

What do I need to know about it around here?

To introduce myself:

I'm 35, and I moved to CA after exiting the Navy in my early 20's. I've been in college, baseball and entrepreneurship all of this time while giving as little time to other employers as possible. I let go of a tree service of 6 years in the making, and moved into making a Wall St. strategy. I'd have to say that if a pay streak is something I were looking for, there is very little in residential tree services, and there is a whole lot more in the Wall St. trading (if you know what you are doing). I created a great strategy after 20 months at 80 hours a week of dedication to this area of study (I work hard). I spent a ton of money devising that strategy, and my final test runs of my strategy were using virtual money trading platform in the stock market (I burnt up all of my real cash) was unbeatable.

LOL the thing is I don't have enough money to make much of a difference in the stock market this year (so far), and I like it that way. There's nothing like it. Here I have a strategy to basically print money yet no money to invest in the strategy, so I'm forced to do something else. I'm dedicated to prospecting. To me that's a good thing and not a bad thing. No, it's a great thing. I love prospecting, camping, geology, hard work involved, and running an operation. I can even rock climb the mountains up to high lodes if that's ever necessary. LOL

Gold prospecting is just a great all around life style. It's something every man should learn to entertain his family with during back country outings.

I do need to run this like a business though, and that brings me to my question about blasting, so I can follow those veins down.

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Hello there Slow-n-low,

Are we to assume that after you've extensively prospected an unclaimed area, recovered several hard rock samples,(marked and numbered), turned over to a refiner and assayed, and said assay reports indicate 1-3 oz. per ton. you are now ready to organize a plan for extraction of a substantial ore body rich in Au chemically? Bein new to all this, and no matter how educated you are, findin even small placer deposits will prove to be difficult at best in the beginning. All the stuff you will learn from books an literature, many times will go right out the window when yer boots are actually in the dirt. You will look in all the places the books an info talk about an there wont be any, then you'll find some somewheres it shouldn't be. Hmmm? Mother nature is funny is that way. I thinkin you might want to focus on how to go about findin 1 or more decent deposits then you could worry about methods of mining it. I wouldn't worry bout blasting anything till I had several core samples drilled an substantial deposits of free milling (visible gold) were determined. Hard rock mining is much more expensive than placer mining, especially fer someone new to all this. I'd just hate to see someone spend a bunch of money, then loose a bunch of money, get frustrated an quit b'fore they got started. Just too many wolves out there workin hard to mine the inexperienced new prospectors. But, no matter what trail you take, go slow an good luck.


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I think learning about blasting, at this point, is like learning a baby how to operate a 3 d printer before it can see ( this baby's born blind) or even have the coordination to type.

Let alone, walk..

THen there's all the bookwork and research on finding viable claims, and dealing w/ the bureaucracy

Jus sayin.


I also hear a horn being tooted for a 'sure thing' . Hope nooone bites.

Jus sayin, again.

Welcome to the board, RH


Edited by weaver hillbille
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Blasting is a special license. You need 4 years working under a licensed blaster and then pass a test... get the dupont blasters textbook and absorb its contents..especially the math.. You also need to know about using delays, det cord and the different types and strengths of explosives... I used to be a licensed blaster and owned a blasting company for a couple years ... before I got licensed I rode a 90 pound hydraulic drill working for the best blasting co. In northern CA... the state doesn't just hand out the license... osha admins the test.. my partner and I took the test at the same time ... i got 100% but he got 70%... he got a restricted license that stated he could only handle powder if I was supervising him ... I was not comfortable with that because he smoked pot constantly ... he got to ride the drill and I handled the powder ... I finally just had a one man show, building roads into mines in the Klamath and Trinity mtns... cheers, Unc. Ps...need to know what youre doing if you want to be a powder monkey ... I quit after a few miss fires I then had to go in and fix!

Edited by Uncle Ron
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I think if you're teaching yourself blasting, it'd be a very expensive hobby. These days, searches like that would probably get you put on a watch list. If you did any blasting in the navy, you may have an idea of what you want to do.

I'm not entirely sure, blasting would be necessary. There's a lot of rock that can be moved with a pic, shovel, chain, crevicing tools, and a chain tied around boulders attached to the back of your pick up. I've seen some very silly suggestions about using blasting. One was a suggestion for someone to use Dynamite to break through the permafrost instead of using a dozer. I suppose if you're digging a tunnel, blasting could be good, if you know what you're doing. There's also mining engineering. It's one thing taking a tree stump out with dynamite in your back yard, but its quite another thing blasting a tunnel and installing shoring so as not to collapse on yourself.

I'd imagine you'd attract a lot of attention once you started your shots. From a liability issue, you'd want to be sure people are clear. Especially after the first shot attracts all the curious.

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IMHO, you don't "teach yourself" blasting ... If you want to just pop boulders, there are products that use compressed air that you don't need a license for ... If you're thinking of trying hard-rock mining with explosives, you could just go stand in front of a train now and end the suspense! ... Plus, I'm sure the restrictions on buying powder and caps are horrendous now ... When I was doing in in the early'80's I just walked into the hardware store and bought it ... No license required .... All in all, it's one thing to be a newb to prospecting and a whole different kettle of fish to play with powder... Be careful! ... Cheers, Unc

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Thanks for the warnings and advice.

I don't have anything to blast. I'm just dredging info on everything to understand the limitations and possibilities of the field.

Safety is a top priority, and blasting is extreme risk management. If it's all too much hassle, then I assume checking all of the details of a find, and selling a claim to the outfits is just as good or better. There's something about the contractor in me that wants to drop a shaft down in the ground, and pull out that stuff.

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Back in the 1930 through the early 1950's any one in the Ely Nevada area could go to a hardware store

and buy a stick or two up to what was a case. For more it was needed to go to the sidehill strorage.

Hecx back in 1949 I alone used a bull-prick and single-jack 4-uniformally spaced holes about 24 inches

into the hardpan in the Masonic section of the main Mountain View cemetery in Reno... Then I would use

a special pair of pliars to crimp a cap and tamp the stick in the hole and cut a notch on the end of each fuse

Then I would take a short section of fuse and notch it four times... Then I would make sure that no one was

near, Light all 4-sticks jump out while yelling Fire in the Hole and cover the shallow grave with a large heavy

sheet of tin and if it went well it would be 4 muffed poofs and just raise the tin-sheet and I would drag it clear

and then do something else near by until the fumes were gone... My grandfather and my dad taught me at

an early age and after I graduated from Mackay and did freelancing consulting work there was no problem

in jack-legging a round or two--- until the government added so many restrictions which was becoming

necessary in many instance because there was some abusing this privalige and blasting in the lake to harvest

fish and dumb abusives... However while serving my hitch in the Army corp of Engineers I learned an taught

stuff such as using c-4 and cordite and bangaloor topedoes to clear a minefield,

Uncle Ron covers the dangers and restrictions fully and well-spoken style... Good for Uncle Ron :thumbsupanim:thumbsupanim:thumbsupanim

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Sorry low and slow but I doubt you are going to find many paying veins to go down on today;

and you will also be involved with pages and pages of conflicting govt. restrictions and

regulations and permits. just my take.... tailgate

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I'm wondering about blasting. I understand there is a contractor's license for blasting, so I was thinking that if I get that specialty qualification stamped on my license (I have a contractors license), I only have to legitimize my claim, and I can blast.

Forget it... you're in CA. Nowadays it would take an act of God for you to be permitted (both state and fed) to handle explosives in that communist state. Never mind the fact all the BS you'd have to wade through with the public notifications, EI studies, POO's etc. to even think about blasting on your claim.

Here in the free state of AZ, we're lucky. No state tests, permits or licenses are required if you're using explosives for your own private use. You apply for your explosives license with the feds, pay your money, they come out and inspect your storage facilities, sign off on it and you're free to do as you please. Easy peasy... :thumbsupanim

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Wowwwwwww, nice in AZ. :thumbsupanim

One thing that most don't realize around the US about CA is that privileges used decent citizens in other states are abused to whole other realms of extremes here. There are several basic reasons for it, but in simple terms it's culture. The majority of people here are okay, but there are so many other people without healthy intentions here. CA is sort of like the debris trap on the side of the swimming pool. This place collects a lot of questionable characters from around the world, and then they multiply.

Managing a prison is much different than managing a college campus. The rules are going to be more stringent in the "prison" because of the intentions of the inmates are far different than the campus students' elsewhere. Then it just spirals on down from there. I could write a whole book on this exact subject: CA culture and politics. :old:

But I'll keep the forum on the brighter subject at hand. LOL Like where the gold out here? :Just_Cuz_06:

I'm not very far from AZ. I just learned that GPAA has some claims to work out there too. :200: Maybe I sneak out of this CA prison commune for little of the AZ color. lol Maybe next winter though because AZ is hot state.

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A lot of good club claims in AZ with easy access via 4WD to learn how to prospect. After you figure how to stake a claim, there's more open ground than a guy can prospect in a life time. There are some people that do OK finding gold in AZ. Don't expect to strike it rich. There's ground out here that may be able to pay, it's only missing the rivers to make it profitable.

"Arizona.—In 2010, all gold mined in Arizona was recovered as a byproduct from copper mining and processing."

USGS 2010 mineral yearbook, p 313

Of course that comment is scaled towards large corporate mining, and not the small miners you see on this page.

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I haven't even found a single color yet. I haven't looked much either. I went lode hunting a few times is all so far. I found nothing but a big cup in a big marble dike worn out by storm waters for the past million years it looks like. Dug down to the bottom, and found nothing. There was a gossan or iron hat across the way from it in the wall. Didn't pan any of it yet though. I didn't know what it was other than some kind of vein at the time. I need to go back, and check.

This weekend I'm going to go out to one of these GPAA claims after I join tomorrow, and camp out for a few weeks, break in my pick and pan, dig big holes and make bigger blisters. Hopefully I make a few prospecting buddies. :inocent:

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