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Gold Prospecting Forums - General => Steppegold's "All you've ever wanted to read about placer gold" => Topic started by: ClickTheYellowChick on May 17, 2007, 11:33:56 AM

Title: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: ClickTheYellowChick on May 17, 2007, 11:33:56 AM
Hello, Steppe

One reason I accepted Dave's invitation to join up here is because I spotted your name.   You see, I caught the most excellent photo essay on another forum re: the gigantic walking dredges still in use in parts of this world, Mongolia I believe, in particular.

And of course, being a woman, I was most interested in learning more about it as I read your flattering description of a sharp woman owner biz utilizing these giant dredges.

I posted a reply there and you never returned to the topic.  It is my fervent hope you won't be so reticent here.  You promised to share the definitive study and result of effeciency of said dredges and what mistake in calculations we American's make in calculating effeciency when dredging.

I'm all ears, and hope to find you re-capitulating your photo essay here for this forum's benefit, as well as addressing the poser that has me hanging by my ChickieToes about the mistake and the truth as you brought forth.

Thank you, Steppe.  Now I'll hunker down and wait. [&whistle#]
ClickTheYellowChick
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: Steppegold on May 29, 2007, 05:53:39 PM
Mia Culpa - I've been preoccupied with lots of other things.
 :-[
Right, let me dig out some pics and get posting. And if you can post something about the Snowstorm Dredge (and its sluices) then we'll all be in for a treat.

cheers

Steppe
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: Steppegold on May 29, 2007, 06:04:23 PM
Hi Folks - I've lived in Mongolia since 1995. Then there was just one working dredge in Mongolia, and only a few dry mines. I've been documenting the placer gold rush since, now with 135 placer mining companies working 200 placer mines, and the Mongolian Dredge Fleet now has SIX large bucket line gold dredges and about 20 smaller bucket line dredges. I'm posting to share knowhow and ideas. And I am hoping someone will volunteer pics of the Snowstorm Dredge (especially its riffles) for me to include in the Tech Manual I've nearly completed for publication.

First I'll try and post some pics of the gold dredges to see if you folks are interested. If you want to visit them it can be arranged!

We'll see how it goes - I would like to discuss PLACER DRILLING later on, as there is a systemic error that means understimation of gold reserves beneath wet floodplains. This error seems to be ignored in the USA and Canada, but please realise that the 6 giant Gold Dredges in Mongolia exist ONLY because the systemic error was corrected by the soviets just before the command economy collapsed.

Enjoy the pics and realise that - if I'm right - then large gold dredges would be profitable in USA and Canada on placers formerly written off as subeconomic grades.

cheers - Steppe
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: Steppegold on May 29, 2007, 06:05:57 PM
This is not an old picture in the USA it is of one of the 6 giant gold dredges in Mongolia.

Its what we call the 'North Dredge' of Shijir Alt company, strictly speaking its Shijir Alt #1.
(http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c331/crestednewt/ShijiirAltNorthDredgefromair2-1.jpg)
Thanks to Golden Tiger Corporation for the picture

Its a bucket-line dredge built in Irkutz in Siberia by IZTM who built all 6 of the Mongolian Dredge Fleet and also built the entire Russian Dredge Fleet that includes not only gold dredges but also a few platinum and diamond dredges

Steppe
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: Steppegold on May 29, 2007, 06:13:24 PM
The Mongolian Dredge Fleet operates for most, but not all, of the winter. Its minus 30-40 centrigrade in a normal winter! Here you can see smoke from the coal-fired bunker that via a boiler and pipes keeps the washplant working.
(http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c331/crestednewt/ShijiirAltNorthDredge3.jpg)
Its the North Dredge again, thanks to Gerrit-the-Dredge for the pic.

Steppe
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: Steppegold on May 29, 2007, 06:15:10 PM
It sure is a BUCKET-LINE dredge, and here is the bucket-line raised clear of the water "just for the photo"!
(http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c331/crestednewt/ShijiirAltNorthDredge5.jpg)
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: Steppegold on May 29, 2007, 06:18:04 PM
Hi, time to look at a second member of the Mongolian Gold Dredge Fleet.

This one is further down the Tuul Valley and is known as the Bayangol Dredge. It was first owned by Hailaast JSC but this State owned enterprise could not pay for it fully so it was privatized and a Russian company Altan Dornod Mongol (Golden East - Mongolia) now own and operate it.

(http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c331/crestednewt/BayangolDredge2small.jpg)

Notice that the entire dredge is winterized by cladding, and the rear stacker conveyor can be lowered onto the ground when the dredge is resting. Notice the dozer for scale!
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: Steppegold on May 29, 2007, 06:20:09 PM
The Bayangol Gold Dredge is mining close to a fault scarp created in the post Neogene - that means quite recently. Between the dredge and the mountain is the Tuul River (out of sight).
(http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c331/crestednewt/Bayangoldredge-1.jpg)
Over the years we've coined the term 'crocodile' for the ribbon of coarse oversize tailings dumped by the rear stacker, the crocodile being made of bananas!
 :o
Steppe
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: Steppegold on May 29, 2007, 06:23:23 PM
A banana is made when the bucket-line dredge makes a swing. You may not of seen (or heard!) the swing of a bucket-line dredge, so specially for you here is the South Dredge of Shijir Alt:
(http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c331/crestednewt//large%20dredges/ShijiirAltSouthDredgeAug02CUT.jpg)

The dredgemasters say the noise of a dredge is when a dredge sings...
Steppe
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: Steppegold on May 29, 2007, 06:27:38 PM
Here is the result of the South Dredge swinging on its spuds and singing... ....a crocodile made of bananas!
(http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c331/crestednewt/croc-1.jpg)
Steppe
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: Steppegold on May 29, 2007, 06:29:35 PM
And I'd better show you some buckets on a line to show these really are bucket-line dredges and so do all their own placer digging and feeding - unlike the dragline-fed Snowstorm Dredge (as I understand it?).
Here are the buckets of the Bayangol Dredge.
(http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c331/crestednewt/large%20dredges/P1010046.jpg)
Steppe
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: Steppegold on May 29, 2007, 06:32:42 PM
Its quite a remote place where the dredges are, and here is some of the wildlife.
(http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c331/crestednewt/large%20dredges/wolf-Chimee.jpg)

Thanks to Chimee for the pic
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: Steppegold on May 29, 2007, 06:36:15 PM
Moving a little downvalley, here is the first of the pair of Toson Dredges - both owed by a Mongolian woman miner Garamjav.

This is the South Toson Dredge. It is slighty squatter than the sister dredges in order to enable it to twist and turn in the narrow floodplain it was designed for in Tolgoit in North Mongolia. When it had exhausted its reserves, Garamjav bought the dredge had it cut up into about 200 truckloads and had it reassembled here in the Tuul Valley.
(http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c331/crestednewt/large%20dredges/TosonSouthDredge.jpg)

You can see big bananas being formed by washed oversize dumped by the winterised rear stacker conveyor, and notice the 2 spuds - one up, one down - the down spud acts an anchor on which the dredge swings. Forward movement is by twisting the dredge and dropping the second spud and raising the first spud, rather like walking on stilts.

The 2 discharge chutes are discharging water and undersize tailings from the washplany aboard the dredge. The fine tailings (with fine gold the sluices cannot catch, plus coarse gold stolen by sticky clay robbers) are dumped first and then buried by the oversize bananas (with nuggets and improperly washed clay balls with gold) of the crocodile.

These dredges are designed to use mercury but do not do so - mercury usage at placer gold mines was BANNED in the Soviet Union and in Mongolia in order to protect the health of mineworkers. The design of the dredge remains the same. 

Steppe

 
 
 
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: Steppegold on May 29, 2007, 06:38:48 PM
Here is the front end of the Toson Dredge. Being owned by a woman it is the neatest of the dredges!
(http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c331/crestednewt/large%20dredges/TosonSouthDredge2.jpg)

Steppe
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: Steppegold on May 29, 2007, 07:55:25 PM
Phew - that's enough for the moment.

As well as these 6 large bucket-line dredges in the Mongolian Dredge Fleet, there are about 20 small Chinese-designed tiny bucket-line dredges small enough for you to make in your garage.

Any comments anyone so far?
 ;D
Steppe
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: GPEX admin on May 29, 2007, 10:21:46 PM
Hi Steppe

Nice to see you have a moment to drop by, and as normal, add to your ever bedazzling contribution on placer mining.

I'm sure for most, as I, now seeing the dynamics of operations in your part of the world, puts a whole new slant on the scope of pulling gold from the ground.  I'm very curious as to how much tonnage one of those bucket operations moves in a day?  It must be phenomenal.  And what is the average recovery rate, and their cut-off point?

Needless to say, you work with a determined breed of people, for it's not only large scale operations occurring in Mongolia but it remains the livelihood of many (as you have shown us).  By far, for the largest percentage around the world, there's something so unexplainably special about the glitter of that color.  Most likely though, it's the fascination behind  the challenge of conquering its unearthing into thy hand.

I can't imagine how dull this world would be without the intrigue of prospecting.

Hope to see you again soon.

Best regards to you and yours...
Larry
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: prospecta04342 on April 02, 2008, 02:40:17 PM
Hi Steppe, You sure get around don't you,  John
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: rockpup on April 02, 2008, 09:25:16 PM
Very cool Pictures ,I have a freind who's dad is helping to start a ranch in mongolia .He stayed there for awhile but never mentioned any thing about dredges. I guess mongolias such a large country he might not have been in the same region.Does anyone know where one can see an old dredge in bc or alberta? would be curious to see one first hand.
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: dgg999 on May 01, 2008, 07:39:04 PM
Those are sure great pictures.  I saw a couple of dredges in Alaska (Fairbanks) and one in The Yukon.  There is also one that has been restored near Baker City, OR.  It is about 20 min from there in a place called Sumpter.
They have a narrow gauge RR and some other stuff - if you are in Eastern OR it is worth a visit.  There ia a museum in town that has a terrific rock collection - so good the Smithsonion? spelling? wanted it.
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: shiver on May 02, 2008, 05:36:11 PM
These were found on the Fraser earlier in the year by a GPEX crew....

[attachimg=#1]

[attachimg=#2]

[attachimg=#3]
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: Linda on May 04, 2008, 04:40:22 PM
Hello Steppe:
Thanks for taking the time to share those fantastic photos of the dredges.  They are quite a sight.
Makes my idea of a little ol'e gold pan seem really insignificant now.
Linda   
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: joetherock on May 30, 2008, 01:03:05 AM
Hi everyone
This is Jenthenugget.  Those are awesome pics Stepp!!  They are huge and all the info you gave about them is fascination.

Years ago when I was in the Yukon, I remember going into a couple of the dredges that were not far from the roads.  One was, let me think, near Bonanza Creek (south of Dawson City), this one seemed to be in not bad shape.  There was another one off of "the top of the world highway" about 10 miles before the US border (down a dirt road for awhile), this one was pretty dilapidated.  Then there was another one just across the border between Action Jackson's (on border) and Chicken Alaska, this one was in a little better shape than the one down the dirt road.  I will try to find the pictures of them we took and I have some postcards too that I could share with you guys.  Being young it did amaze me how big they were (not as big as Stepps dredges) and the chain links were the biggest I had ever touched, back then it was like yeah that's cool-a dredge--nice.  Now it would be like ok-how did they get the dirt in? how did they move?  what was this for? where all did they travel, etc. back then it was interesting and ok--but now I would want to know more as an adult (problem is if I took Hubby to Dawson City, he wouldn't want to come back-and I don't want to move :()

All you guys are extremely helpful and full of information--just ask and someone will answer

Great job everyone--I learn something new everyday
Thanks for being here
Jenthenugget
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: twobro on July 23, 2008, 07:36:25 PM
I think this is the dredge by Dawson City that you are talking about.  It was fascinating, along with all the history.  It was the most amazing journey the wife and I have taken.  I would also love to move there, but the wife won't move either.

[attachimg=#]
[attachmini=# [ You are not allowed to view attachments ] ]
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: spud on January 07, 2009, 07:12:10 PM
some pics of a bucket dredge in Eldorado Victoria Australia its called Coxes dredge  (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v226/spudseamus/KIF_3037.jpg)

(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v226/spudseamus/KIF_3038.jpg)


(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v226/spudseamus/KIF_3039.jpg)


(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v226/spudseamus/KIF_3042.jpg)










Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: honeyman76 on January 08, 2009, 10:06:07 AM
The dredges look like something seen in Star Wars!!!
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: geo_tonz on April 03, 2009, 11:30:35 AM
Good lord they're monstrous. I guess there's much bigger bucket wheels and such in Fort McMurray but wow! Sure put things in perspective when you're not allowed to put a sluice in the stream here!
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: jeff steeves on May 14, 2009, 09:24:19 PM
 <-shock_> THANKS THERE EH! i havent ever seen anything like that before, I was thinkin a 5gallon pail was gettin it done WOW {cool^sign}
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: BINZ on March 26, 2011, 11:02:45 AM
well this is a very impressive machine but on the other side of the coin how harmful is it to the surrounding ecosystem ? The giant trout called the Taimen also lives in some of these waters that the machines work in ...  From what i see it doesn't really leave the water like it was before it arrived .... I hope that they at least put up some sort of silt control to prevent the whole water way from getting as mucky as it is around the working areas...
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: Former Guest on October 07, 2012, 12:54:19 PM
Cool pics and yes in the 1920 dredging was done in the NSR 1 dredge is sunk bit down from Devon, at one time the stack was still sticking out not sure about today. 2 more sunk out east of Veg AB so the Nsr has a history of this cheers Ray check providence gold history
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: kiwigold2 on October 22, 2013, 03:06:04 AM
There are still some of those dredgers but a lot smaller being used in parts of New Zealand today also.
kiwigold
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: Ambrose on October 22, 2013, 10:16:50 PM
Really interesting Steppe.  To bad the images did not appear on a few of the postings though.
Title: Re: Steppe's Photo series on Mongolian Giant Dredges
Post by: alleyoop on April 25, 2015, 10:46:10 PM
                   Thanks nice looking land and pics.