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Author Topic: Is There Indeed a Payout for the Average Placer Miner ?  (Read 7014 times)

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Offline GPEX admin

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Is There Indeed a Payout for the Average Placer Miner ?
« on: January 26, 2008, 12:15:45 PM »
Aside from all the benefits of healthy outdoor exercise and piece of mind visiting with Mother Nature, does nowadays placer mining for you pay off more than the expenses?  If not, why?  If so, tell us about your operation, the size of its scope, and, the equipment and methods used.
Somebody said that it couldn't be done
But he with a chuckle replied
That maybe it couldn't but he wouldn't be one
Who'd say so until he had tried.

Offline MephistoCat

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Re: Is There Indeed a Payout for the Average Placer Miner ?
« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2009, 12:46:59 AM »
well, im going to bump this up!

no payouts for me yet, a few tiny specks of flour, about it......

for me i really enjoy getting out of the heckhole called Vancouver  and into the countryside of Hope and Yale and beyond.  However, factor in about $100 for fuel, and since i;m a wee little piggy when it comes to lunch, about $30 for a pile of hotdogs, sammiches, drinks, cold beer, snacks etc etc. oh and COFFEE! i love bringing lots of hot coffee! . I tend to support local business in Hope or Yale or farther up towards Lytton etc, rather than here in Vancouver.

I could spend days rec panning, digging and classifying, washing gravel etc, however since i dont have a camper i tend to go all day and then return to Vancouver. I have a lit fat cat here thats my lil buddy and he needs his Vet food every day, so i dont like staying away too long. If i get a camper i'll take him with me in the future!

as for methods:

I dig with pick and shovel, and shovel it over a grizzly, then shovel thepile underneath into my Keene screens, starting at 1/2" and working down. I wash each size in a tub, then pour the stuff in the tub into a bucket and refill the tub with fresh water. I then go to the next size in the screens, washing the previous screened stuff. I honestly do little panning, mostly classifying. At the end of the day i have buckets full of various grades of gravel/sand/fines which i take home and dry for future processing.

since i got the Montana Pan, i simply screen down to 1/4" and put it in thepan, until i get nothing but garnets, black sand and maybe gold! still need to get a blue bowl for final finishing.

 
used to be Mephisto here.........now im back as MephistoCat!

Offline lsfog

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Re: Is There Indeed a Payout for the Average Placer Miner ?
« Reply #2 on: March 04, 2009, 06:54:15 AM »
Maybe it's just me but I haven't been real happy with the blue bowl.
The first 50 $ at the doorstep takes it.

I run most all my diggins thru my awesome copper trommel -- screened to 1/4 or 1/8th depending which side of the Rockies I'm working / playing on.

Every hour I dump the sluice into a 5'er and rerun the con's back at the RV or home.
I do the rerun thru a 5 foot gutter sluice with rubber matting glued in and a 1/64th screen at the bottom catch bucket.

A second -- rerun of the 1/64th material just as a precaution.

Any bits bigger than 1/64 show up in the sluice like a pimple on your prom date.....
The trommel is set up so that a 1/2 > 2/3 full 5-er will mostly auto feed with just a scoop or two to be hands on emptied.

This leaves me "free" time to have a sip of coffee and or get the next bucket ready.
Ken

ClickTheYellowChick

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Re: Is There Indeed a Payout for the Average Placer Miner ?
« Reply #3 on: March 04, 2009, 12:05:18 PM »
Maybe it's just me but I haven't been real happy with the blue bowl.
The first 50 $ at the doorstep takes it.

Ken

 <-NO_> Don't look at me, Ken, to take that thing off your hands!  <-frustrated->
That is one of the most frustrating piece of black sands twiddlin' doodads ever invented.  I know of maybe 2 guys, in my 20+ years of placer mining who could make that piece o'rubber talk.  The rest either openly feel as you and I do about it, or mutter in secret and think there's something wrong with them.

PS...I hunted for 2 years before finally getting one.  Sold mine for $55. <-yahoo_>


ClickTheYellowChick

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Re: Is There Indeed a Payout for the Average Placer Miner ?
« Reply #4 on: March 04, 2009, 12:18:06 PM »
Aside from all the benefits of healthy outdoor exercise and piece of mind visiting with Mother Nature, does nowadays placer mining for you pay off more than the expenses?  If not, why?  If so, tell us about your operation, the size of its scope, and, the equipment and methods used.

Intriguing question, there. Mr. Amey.  I'm going to spend some cogitating time in how to respond to this thread.  You see, sir, I kind of BACKED into placer mining after stumbling headlong into gold discovery and recovery through my above ground gold recycling.

I will admit, I'm a little stumped by your use of the term "average miner."  I don't think I'm one of those.  However, if you still want my input on this topic, I'll see what I can do.  I await your direction.

Since my gold recovery ops were already highly profitable, I didn't approach placer mining from the need to make a profit, per se

I have however, made placer mining pay, so let me spend some time mentally reviewing how I got from "there to here" and what pointers I can share in order to encourage others if you think that is going to be on topic. <-thinking-> <-yes_>



Offline Chuxgold

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Re: Is There Indeed a Payout for the Average Placer Miner ?
« Reply #5 on: March 05, 2009, 08:47:16 AM »
I made two trips out late last fall to try my new stile of rocker box apron. And made money both times. The first trip I found 1/4 once The second 1/2. Got really ripped off selling it thou Right after the second trip I listed my rocker on EBay and guess what "nothing". I have tried saying everything I can, within reason. And could even go further but want My buyers to buy with confidents. Not just because I pushed it on to them . You have to stay dedicated the hole day. And if your fighting the thought you got ripped off your not thinking about how the gold is concentrating out. or check often enough to keep in the gold. I started out making one when I was in Alaska. From a description that a friend had told me. First time out it fell apart. "Use screws" not nails, to make one. I didn’t try again until about 8 years ago for some ore I thought had some gold in it. Looked right in the pan as far as weights. To bad it was mostly 'Zink! I stayed at it for awhile trying to find a vein. And built several different stiles. Trying to get the best results I could. But ran out of money. And had to give up. A long winter directed me at selling inkle looms. And I forgot about the rocker until gold prices went up. I hate making the looms. There really fickle to put together, the way I do. And I don't weave. Since then fighting to get it right through giving total money back guarantees. That make me try for that little extra. I now have a apron I can not improve apron. And have been trying to make the over all rocker better. And more user friendly. But i am still up against a wall with no one believing in prospecting as a way to make money. Unless you have some you want to try to make a lot more with. Just like the rule to gambling. You can't beet the house with no money to bet when the odds are in your favor. And those that try with all they have. Will always go home broke. To beet the house You have to stay confident of your odds. And you can't do that worrying about how much you have.
I feel prospecting died with the first world war. So did the rocker box. It was just getting out of its infancy with the depression driving people to use one. Then the war hit. Gold prices were frozen. And every one that could gold mine was drafted The ones that new the how’s and were to’s. Either died. Was crippled. Or just went to work after the war. After the war times were good And Prospecting brought on the thoughts of just how bad it once was in the depression. And just wanted to forget. When they lifted the freeze on gold prices it was worth around 25 a once. And you could make 30$ to 40$ in a days work at a job without odds of success. So the few that were left that new about how to make and use a rocker Gave it up. Prospecting did not take hold again until the invention of the hydraulic hand dredge. Then after a surfer invented neoprene Things really took off. But every one fell to the lure of big nuggets. And now still think about that. Even with the high gold prices. No one knows much about rockers so can't know much about were or how to get flower gold. A rocker box in many was is flower gold if you want to put some in your poke. Other wise its just a annoyance that shows up with the clean up of a slues. There vary seldom is enough to course separation beyond slow patient collection of individual flakes. Not even caring about the micro gold. The more flower you have in your pan the easier it is to separate.
Dues any one know were I can find a history of gold prices for the last century.
Or if any one wants to do the research and make there own conclusion please do. It would make a excellent post.
Chuxgold. <-thinking->
Give self, to gain wisdom,

Offline MrDave

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Re: Is There Indeed a Payout for the Average Placer Miner ?
« Reply #6 on: March 05, 2009, 05:06:41 PM »
My pay off is meeting people. Most people here in Central Alberta have never seen a person panning. Many days I just spend enjoying the air. Even the fish cops come for a visit. I always find color, but never worry about it, it is just a bonus. Two years ago I seriously injured my knee and spent three months being unable to even walk. After surgery I was simply happy to be back in the outdoors.
Happy to have achieved Dirty Old Man status. Finally a goal achieved.

Offline Chuxgold

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Re: Is There Indeed a Payout for the Average Placer Miner ?
« Reply #7 on: March 05, 2009, 05:43:13 PM »
My pay off is meeting people. Most people here in Central Alberta have never seen a person panning. Many days I just spend enjoying the air. Even the fish cops come for a visit. I always find color, but never worry about it, it is just a bonus. Two years ago I seriously injured my knee and spent three months being unable to even walk. After surgery I was simply happy to be back in the outdoors.
Yea a real treat if you can afford it. Having some sort of income, other wise there needs to be some gold in that pan for you to stay. Or even get there. I totally agree with you thou! its just has to be the second thing on the list. . And once you do find something to afford the trip or know you can, then you can enjoy the surroundings. But until then there is a rising sickness as the wallet gets thinner.  We are all tied to the dollar whether we like it or not.
Chuxgold <-thinking->   
Give self, to gain wisdom,

Offline garnetsootheran

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Re: Is There Indeed a Payout for the Average Placer Miner ?
« Reply #8 on: March 05, 2009, 07:28:52 PM »
Chuxgold
Your candor is much appreciated and you hit the nail right on the head when you say we are tied to the dollar. Unfortunately that dollar is sinking fast.
I guess I really haven't kept score as to whether I have had a payout - but I seem to be more of a prospector than miner so it differs. I've spent a lot of money over the years and have personally added to the old adage that "the only ones getting rich are the ones mining the miners".
I have manage to stake a few claims and make a few deals, most of the gold and platinum I have found is still sitting in a bottle somewhere. As Chux says you have to make a living and that I do with the sweat of my brow - but not by mining.
The experiences along the way are priceless and to some of us is the best payout - completly intangeble but sometimes those types are best.

Chux - about the price of gold over the past century - I think I have seen some info on old prices in the BC Ministry of Mines Annual reports. I will have a look for them and maybe start a post of what I find, if anything.

Offline rockpup

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Re: Is There Indeed a Payout for the Average Placer Miner ?
« Reply #9 on: March 05, 2009, 08:44:35 PM »
There is a fellow in lethbridge my buddy met.He placer mines in the kootneys and made just over $5000 in profit this year.Im not sure how much time or effort was made.He did have a rather nice trommel,my buddy did some welding work on it.