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The lil Gold Spinner
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The Pocket Sluice

Author Topic: How much dirt can a man realistically move?  (Read 11949 times)

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Offline ebuyc

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  • Province/State: Spokane Valley, WA ; USA
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  • 12 yrs of union-demolition, show me the bedrock!
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Re: How much dirt can a man realistically move?
« Reply #10 on: December 21, 2012, 08:52:49 AM »
I'll attest to Chance's 2/3 full...more like 3/4...then he RUNS them up to this rig and meets me half way back on my first crawl to the truck carrying 1/3 to 1/2 buckets.
I swear the guy has a 40" stride !


Bob

 lol!!!@*  lol!!!@*  lol!!!@* Ok busted!  ;D

Thanks Bob, I didn't realize I was running, but I get that a lot! All those years in the Laborers union I guess!?

I have went out with SpokaneTim a few times too and I am like "we played around at it" and SpokaneTim replies "no we worked our azzes off!"


My daughters can keep up with me, but the wife not so well! I taught both my daughters how to properly run a #2 shovel!!
Both my kids helped me dig a 70' [sewer] trench UNDERNEATH my house in the crawl space with 5 gallon buckets, they made me proud keeping up with my digging!!

Thanks again Bob, I better stay in shape with this reputation forming!

Did someone say       

Offline ebuyc

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Re: How much dirt can a man realistically move?
« Reply #11 on: December 21, 2012, 08:59:53 AM »

Bottom line, I would say that I personally tend to overestimate the value of the gold and the time it will take to get it cleaned out. I don't think I have ever over estimated.  What that means to me is if I am considering going "into production" and the numbers are not good, then I should not go into production on that sport and should continue looking for another with better potential.

Was that "I don't think I have ever over estimated" or did you mean under estimated?
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Offline Former Guest

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Re: How much dirt can a man realistically move?
« Reply #12 on: December 21, 2012, 10:27:21 AM »
I just count shovel fulls and if reached and good spot be close in weight, i shoot for 800 shovels a day at least more with 2 ppl working. I have found that much needs to be moved sluicing. In order to make it pay worth it for me. Try it one time you may like this way it works if working steady i will stock pile it till time permits it. With the size here got to move material to make it pay for days work, i am not into working for free so started counting shovels long ago now and stayed with it.  On an average move 800 shovels in a good pay streak and now we are talking some nice gold to be had. cheers Ray

james brown

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Re: How much dirt can a man realistically move?
« Reply #13 on: December 21, 2012, 10:55:33 AM »
There are way too many variables for one definitive answer or guesstimation even   <-laugh->

What type of ground, rock sizes,  shovels size, weight, type of handle... size of pry bar, pick etc...

How easy you read the ground as your working it, and how easy and steady you move through stuff  ...  How systematic ?

I would say few yards moved, and processed is a good days work... I mean there are other things eh lol

Offline Former Guest

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Re: How much dirt can a man realistically move?
« Reply #14 on: December 21, 2012, 11:08:35 AM »
I use a small handled spade for my shovel. Around here not much bigger than my fist size goes over the sluice. Lots ofb small gravel and more pea gravel then comes the sand. Some places are packed together. hard to break up but softer spots are nice to shovel, i try to stay away from hard ground, so much loose stuff around rgar pays just as well why not stay with softer stuff and softer stuff is this years deposit which is what i am after anyway. Seems to pay the best just my findings over time out cheers Ray

Offline overtheedge

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Re: How much dirt can a man realistically move?
« Reply #15 on: December 21, 2012, 12:08:27 PM »
Several folks have brought up the variables at play.

Like ebuyc, I've been a physical laborer for most of my life. Soldier, forest technician, timber faller, farmer and wildland firefighter. I dug my own basement with a #2 shovel and a wheelbarrow until it was large enough to back the tractor in and use the back-blade to move the material out once I broke it up.

But in Alaska, physical work demands slow in the winter. So I trapped, snowshoe and X-country ski. Evenings and colder than -20F are for cerebral activities.

I will say that most people I've seen on the end of the #2 shovel are beating themselves to death. A D-handled shovel is good for dipping out of a wheelbarrow. That is all. Admittedly I occasionally use one for sampling because it is handier to haul.

A long-handled #2 shovel is first, last and always a lever. So folks learn about leverage especially that concept known as a fulcrum. Use the fulcrum.

Bend your knees, not your back. At the beginning of every season, I do a weights and measures test of my equipment. Well, really it is a physical test of me. How much weight can I comfortably lift, move, shake, etc.

Never pivot at the waist under load. My shovel loads are right at 10-10.5 pounds. Have you ever swung a bucket of water on a rope? You gotta lean away from the bucket to counter the centrifugal force right? If you stop rotating, the bucket continues for a bit, eh? When you rotate at the waist under load, the same forces are concentrated at you lower back. Can you spell chiropractor?

Because the deposits locally are in the top 16-20 cm and the material is not boulders, I don't have to dig deep. So I can cycle faster.

When I work a bar, I shovel the easy stuff first. Then I spend a couple hours just moving rocks. Then I shovel the easy stuff again. Specialize for a few hours. Don't permit interruptions in the flow.

When I'm moving rocks, the pump is NOT running, ergo better fuel economy. If you shovel a couple loads, then move a rock or two and shovel again, your pump is wasting fuel and lifespan for what? Keeping the concentrates wet? When I stop feeding the highbanker, concentrates go into a tub, sluice mat replaced and pump re-fueled. Then I move rocks.

To develop efficiency requires proficiency and that demands practice. Practice until it is habit. It will help prevent self-inflicted back and soft tissue injuries.
------------------------------
In the early stages of mine development, the corporations pay great gobs of money to really smart folks to develop a process flow that will maximize profit potential.  Process flow is those various steps required to move material from in-place to the corporation's product for sale.

Small miners and recreational miners tend to forget that each of us is several components of the process flow. So many spend inordinate amounts of time and money tuning our recovery equipment and fail to tune the engine that drives the whole shebang: Us!! A person in good shape can produce about 75 watts continuously. Each of us has to learn how to use that meager amount of power efficiently. That means no injuries!

Just because a person in good shape can produce a peak power output of 200 watt equivalent is NOT a good reason to try. Around here, people have to haul water from the community well. Many opt for a 500 gallon tank in a 3/4 ton PU. 3/4 ton = 1500 pounds. 500 gallons of water = 4100+ pounds = a bit over 2 tons. Axles and springs break on the frost heaved road. I've seen frames cracked in the winter. So is over-loading a good idea? You decide.

Yah, a bit preachy. What can you expect from someone who's additional duty on many jobs included primary instructor? Oh and don't kid yourself, "help prevent" is NOT the same as prevention. It is an odds game. I just don't get hurt as often.
eric

 


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