Dec.20 to 22:SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA: Wholesale and retail show; Gem Faire Inc.; Scottish Rite Center; Fri. 12-6, Sat. 10-6, Sun. 10-5;
Welcome to the GemologyOnline.com Forum
A non-profit Forum for the exchange of gemological ideas
It is currently Sat Dec 14, 2019 10:23 pm

All times are UTC - 4 hours




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 115 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1 ... 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8  Next
Author Message
 Post subject: Re: Tales of the Roaming Prospector
PostPosted: Thu Feb 09, 2017 6:33 pm 
Offline
Gemology Online Veteran

Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 3:52 pm
Posts: 576
Location: N Dakota
Ah... Planning season has arrived! February is always planning season. Ugly cold weather rules the month so I avoid stepping out as much a possible. And so begins the annual ritual of planning. Out comes the sacred book of GPS locations, the maps, the saved articals of interesting places to visit.
First on the list is a new one, Fairburn SD. Got some new acquaintances that have a keen interest in Fairburn agates. So a long weekend trip to plan for that this spring. Next is a fall trip to the north shore of Lake Superior. Fishing for monster Brook trout and lake Superior agates off the beaches near Grand Marais. Since I'm there maybe a trip to the thunder bay area for amethyst. A little Canadian foray might be fun for a day. Ay.
Then what to do with the rest of the summer?
Sapphires, sunstones, opals, garnets, topaz, tough decisions. May take weeks of planning. -35° wind chill yep lots of planning to do.

_________________
Dan


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Tales of the Roaming Prospector
PostPosted: Sat Mar 04, 2017 11:51 pm 
Offline
Gold Member

Joined: Wed Sep 02, 2015 10:52 pm
Posts: 1131
Location: Central Queensland, Australia
Well I'm back after a long absence. I haven't touched a computer in ages, too fatigued - come home, have a shower, eat dinner, go to bed.

I think I'm starting to get too old for a manual job at this pace under these conditions. Been 20 years in the same place, maybe it's time for a change?

Anyways, yes it is planning season here too. One of the worst droughts I can remember at this time of year has reduced this area to a dustbowl (January-February-March is normally the wettest time of the year but so far almost nothing). Lack of rain does not mean lack of heat so I haven't been out anywhere since before Christmas. But it won't be all that much longer and the heat should start fading and we'll be back to prospecting!

My mate has made himself a pulse jig that is supposed to be effective on both gold and heavier gemstones. It's almost complete but we haven't been out to test it yet. Hopefully there will be some solid rain over the next month or so otherwise finding water to run the thing out in the bush could be challenging.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Tales of the Roaming Prospector
PostPosted: Sat Apr 01, 2017 11:10 am 
Offline
Gold Member

Joined: Wed Sep 02, 2015 10:52 pm
Posts: 1131
Location: Central Queensland, Australia
As is usual for here, a long, nasty drought has ended with torrential flooding. About a metre of rain has fallen in the last couple of weeks.

This is good news since the prospecting season is about to begin. Every creek and billabong will now be full of water right through the season, heaps of water available for washing and sluicing. Plus, gullies everywhere will have been scoured out, exposing new ground to be examined.

Think I might start the season with an amethyst dig. The site is near the top of a steep-sided granite outcrop so the ground drains water pretty quickly. Still some minor flood levels at some of the crossings between here and there but hopefully by this coming Thursday it should be ok to go.

I'm itching to try and prove my theory that good-quality amethyst exists a bit deeper down. There are bucket loads of the stuff less than a foot under the surface but they are nearly all junk, hardly any faceting material among it. Mostly badly cracked and shattered. But if there are seams deeper down in the decomposing granite, the depth and hard ground - rotten rock really - may have protected them from bushfire heat and ground movement. I've found that in another site close by (but it's low-lying and will be boggy for ages yet). Last year we cleared a vehicle track to the side of the hole and took the generator and jackhammer to start going deeper but were chased away by rain (the last between then and now) and never got back there.

There's good material hiding there, I can feel it 8)


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Tales of the Roaming Prospector
PostPosted: Sat Apr 01, 2017 5:32 pm 
Offline
Gold Member

Joined: Tue Jul 02, 2013 9:00 am
Posts: 1263
Location: Wylie Texas but in Alaska for a while
Lefty good to hear from you.


So far the only thing I have mined this winter is the Aurora pictures. It is frustrating, we had clear weather for 2 weeks and there was no aurora. We get a good bit of aurora, (it has been good for almost a week) and I had one nifht where it was clear for the start of the night, then overcast all week. WE finbaly get a break in the clouds, and the aurira is going quiet.

Kind of like your drought, dry but with heat. Heat breaks, and it is a meter of rain.

BUT this is a mining thread. So a note on hopeful mining plans.

Several people are taking abut planning, so I thought I would add a plan (more of a hope or dream)

I just talked to a friend who has a gold claim about an hour from me up here is Alaska. HE usually comes up for the summer, but could not make it last year. He thinks he may be able to make it this year. If he does, and the weather cooperates, I may be able to post some updates on gold mining in Alaska.

I am also expecting the spinal cord stim inplant in ly daughter in the next month or two. If it goes well, she should be on her road to recovery, and she may be able to manage on her own for a r=few weekends.

Anyhow his claim is about 4 miles on ATV trails along a local river. We have had a lot of snow, so it depends on how the melt goes, and how much flooding there is. The water has to go down for a while and things need to dry out a little before he can get back to his claim.

BUT who knows, maybe in a few months I will have some pictures of yellow to show.

It is nice tot at least talk about planning.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Tales of the Roaming Prospector
PostPosted: Sun Apr 02, 2017 1:23 am 
Offline
Valued Contributor
User avatar

Joined: Fri Dec 25, 2015 8:31 pm
Posts: 209
Lefty wrote:
There's good material hiding there, I can feel it 8)

Here's hoping for a good find of material then! If you manage to mine enough I wouldn't mind seeing some heat treated, though it may not be worth the cost for such a small amount of material...


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Tales of the Roaming Prospector
PostPosted: Sun Apr 02, 2017 6:01 pm 
Offline
Gold Member

Joined: Wed Sep 02, 2015 10:52 pm
Posts: 1131
Location: Central Queensland, Australia
Cheers Ted. Yes, I've been away from a computer for a while. I keep thinking about saying to my wife that I should ditch this job I've been at for 20 years and go full-time prospecting but I think I know what kind of response I'd get :)

Pictures and news of the gold mining claim would be cool. Though I'm mainly into gems, my dad had a small gold mining claim here when I was very young and I think he and his friend pulled some decent colour out of it (a lot of gold was pulled out of this area in the 1800's) I certainly wouldn't turn my nose up at a few nice little gold nuggets. It's going to be really interesting to see what turns up in this sluice, it's supposed to be designed to capture not only gold but anything reasonably heavy (sapphires, zircons, garnets etc).

Good to hear about your daughter - it's certainly been a long road to her recovery, hopefully this procedure will speed things along for her.

Cheers


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Tales of the Roaming Prospector
PostPosted: Sun Apr 02, 2017 6:04 pm 
Offline
Gold Member

Joined: Wed Sep 02, 2015 10:52 pm
Posts: 1131
Location: Central Queensland, Australia
Shifter55 wrote:
Lefty wrote:
There's good material hiding there, I can feel it 8)

Here's hoping for a good find of material then! If you manage to mine enough I wouldn't mind seeing some heat treated, though it may not be worth the cost for such a small amount of material...


Hi Shifter.

You mean as in, heat-treating amethyst into citrine?

I could actually try that with some of the rubbish stuff I have, got buckets of badly-cracked, partly-formed crystals. Some have a really nice colour but are too smashed up to be gem quality. But they should still respond the same way I would expect.

It only requires fairly low temperatures doesn't it?


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Tales of the Roaming Prospector
PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2017 3:46 am 
Offline
Valued Contributor
User avatar

Joined: Fri Dec 25, 2015 8:31 pm
Posts: 209
Yup, heating amethyst into citrine, apparently it takes a temperature range of 400-600C to get the change going for the sources that will heat to citrine instead of lightening, which should be well within the range of a charcoal pit or barbeque.

It should only take an hour at that temperature but the difficulty may be in avoiding damage to any stones due to heating too quickly...

Unfortunately there isn't a lot of services for treating quartz showing up on google, and the only concrete data I found for treatment procedures are on this forum, but it is in line with heating tiger's eye and what a bushfire could provide to create those strange citrines you occasionally find up there.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Tales of the Roaming Prospector
PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2017 12:13 pm 
Offline
Moderator
User avatar

Joined: Mon Apr 02, 2012 9:31 pm
Posts: 3454
Location: North Carolina
But why do it at all? Citrine generally isn't worth as much as a decent amethyst, is it?

_________________
https://www.etsy.com/shop/angryturtle


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Tales of the Roaming Prospector
PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2017 5:06 pm 
Offline
Gold Member

Joined: Wed Sep 02, 2015 10:52 pm
Posts: 1131
Location: Central Queensland, Australia
I'm not sure why Shifter wants to do it exactly, but I'd probably do it out of simple curiosity.

Remember that chalcedony I collect, along with the petrified wood - the stuff that looks brilliant orange-red but with the exception of a small number of pieces, it's only a thin skin and it's just translucent colourless/white inside? A forum member here mentioned that it might respond to being heated by turning red all the way through since it probably contained the appropriate form of iron to transform at that temperature into the kind responsible for the colour (can't recall if it's ferrous into ferric or vice versa). I tried it and it did indeed make the colour change, though it also cracked.

The only other thing I find in these bands of quartz crystals that I assume were once veins in solid granite is little pea-sized nodules of what appears to be hematite. I'm guessing there's a relationship between them and the fact that wherever you dig a hole in this area, you find purple quartz crystals.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Tales of the Roaming Prospector
PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2017 5:43 pm 
Offline
Gold Member

Joined: Tue Jul 02, 2013 9:00 am
Posts: 1263
Location: Wylie Texas but in Alaska for a while
Lefty wrote:
Cheers Ted. Yes, I've been away from a computer for a while. I keep thinking about saying to my wife that I should ditch this job I've been at for 20 years and go full-time prospecting but I think I know what kind of response I'd get :)

Pictures and news of the gold mining claim would be cool. Though I'm mainly into gems, my dad had a small gold mining claim here when I was very young and I think he and his friend pulled some decent colour out of it (a lot of gold was pulled out of this area in the 1800's) I certainly wouldn't turn my nose up at a few nice little gold nuggets. It's going to be really interesting to see what turns up in this sluice, it's supposed to be designed to capture not only gold but anything reasonably heavy (sapphires, zircons, garnets etc).

Good to hear about your daughter - it's certainly been a long road to her recovery, hopefully this procedure will speed things along for her.

Cheers



I have been to the public areas here a few times where yo basically get very small flakes, no pickers. I did go to a pay to mine place here and got several pickers.

I which you luck, with your efforts. I look forward to hearing how it goes.

If it works out I will try to take some pictures.


When did yoyu say were the best months for mining there?

My son wants us to come to New Zealand sometime soon, It would be bice to at least pretend that I could make a side trip.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Tales of the Roaming Prospector
PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2017 6:37 pm 
Offline
Gold Member

Joined: Wed Sep 02, 2015 10:52 pm
Posts: 1131
Location: Central Queensland, Australia
wilsonintexas wrote:
Lefty wrote:
Cheers Ted. Yes, I've been away from a computer for a while. I keep thinking about saying to my wife that I should ditch this job I've been at for 20 years and go full-time prospecting but I think I know what kind of response I'd get :)

Pictures and news of the gold mining claim would be cool. Though I'm mainly into gems, my dad had a small gold mining claim here when I was very young and I think he and his friend pulled some decent colour out of it (a lot of gold was pulled out of this area in the 1800's) I certainly wouldn't turn my nose up at a few nice little gold nuggets. It's going to be really interesting to see what turns up in this sluice, it's supposed to be designed to capture not only gold but anything reasonably heavy (sapphires, zircons, garnets etc).

Good to hear about your daughter - it's certainly been a long road to her recovery, hopefully this procedure will speed things along for her.

Cheers



I have been to the public areas here a few times where yo basically get very small flakes, no pickers. I did go to a pay to mine place here and got several pickers.

I which you luck, with your efforts. I look forward to hearing how it goes.

If it works out I will try to take some pictures.


When did yoyu say were the best months for mining there?

My son wants us to come to New Zealand sometime soon, It would be bice to at least pretend that I could make a side trip.


Best time here in Queensland (and the Northern Territory where Hartz range is located) is May-June-July-August. Even now it's just beginning to change, I just walked out on the porch and I can feel the cooler, drier change in the air in the early morning (middle of the day is still a bit warm).

Not sure how the climate works in New Zealand, there might possibly be more rain at that time of year. If Earthling still posts here, he might be able to put you onto some spots in New Zealand (gold, ruby rock etc). QLD Barry just sent him some of that Springsure labradorite to examine, be interesting to hear what he finds out.

Cheers


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Tales of the Roaming Prospector
PostPosted: Fri Apr 14, 2017 9:31 am 
Offline
Gemology Online Veteran

Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 3:52 pm
Posts: 576
Location: N Dakota
Well boys, glad to see you back in town! Lefty, Shifter, Wilson. Its been awhile. Windy weather here for a few days finally took the ice out on the river. Ice jams always create flooding and then they break and rush furiously down stream until it blocks up again. Dangerous to be near it until the reservoir ice breaks, then the river levels stay low until the June rise when the mountain snow melt reaches us. But that is the cycle of the mighty Missouri river, all the rivers and creeks that feed it are safe and fair game. So during this spring thaw I have managed to build benches in the garage and run electrical and partially insulate. Timur Sharaborov a good Russian friend living in Manatoba, Canada has been helping me find working equipment. Trim saws, cabbing grinders, even found a graves facitor but I was too broke to get it. He has contacts that provide him with stunning demantoid garnet with horsetail inclusions. :mrgreen:
The next project for this spring is to build my jewelers bench, I have the basic desk and have the plans for the build but decided to change up the classic design for one I am more comfortable working from. A nice 6" piece of railroad will get faced and milled then drilled for a quick change bench pin system. A little different but after tying fishing flies for years Im very comfortable working this way.
A few things to kill the time waiting for the season to start. Then this year I will have only one serious trip in the fall and fill the rest with short run weekend trips

_________________
Dan


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Tales of the Roaming Prospector
PostPosted: Fri Apr 14, 2017 4:15 pm 
Offline
Gold Member

Joined: Tue Jul 02, 2013 9:00 am
Posts: 1263
Location: Wylie Texas but in Alaska for a while
Dan&Sally wrote:
Well boys, glad to see you back in town! Lefty, Shifter, Wilson. Its been awhile. Windy weather here for a few days finally took the ice out on the river. Ice jams always create flooding and then they break and rush furiously down stream until it blocks up again. Dangerous to be near it until the reservoir ice breaks, then the river levels stay low until the June rise when the mountain snow melt reaches us. But that is the cycle of the mighty Missouri river, all the rivers and creeks that feed it are safe and fair game. So during this spring thaw I have managed to build benches in the garage and run electrical and partially insulate. Timur Sharaborov a good Russian friend living in Manatoba, Canada has been helping me find working equipment. Trim saws, cabbing grinders, even found a graves facitor but I was too broke to get it. He has contacts that provide him with stunning demantoid garnet with horsetail inclusions. :mrgreen:
The next project for this spring is to build my jewelers bench, I have the basic desk and have the plans for the build but decided to change up the classic design for one I am more comfortable working from. A nice 6" piece of railroad will get faced and milled then drilled for a quick change bench pin system. A little different but after tying fishing flies for years Im very comfortable working this way.
A few things to kill the time waiting for the season to start. Then this year I will have only one serious trip in the fall and fill the rest with short run weekend trips



Sounds like a nice plan.

I use to have a section of railroad that I hauled around for years. I was in college and went across railroad tracks on a bicycle every day. One day they were replacing a section fo rail and there as a foot long section sitting there. They said I could have it, and I put it in a milk carton that I had rigged as a basket on the back of my cicycle using the handles of a lawn mower. I h=mved it around for 20 years. I think that it is still down in Dallas. I like the idea of milling the top flat.

BUT that is another project a long way off.

If you get it done, please post pictures, and then let us know how it works.

I have had a few emails from the man who has the local claim. He will know in a few weeks if he is going to make it this year or not. His wife is having another surgery and it depends on how well she is doing. (I know that feeling). Anyhow if I go I will take some pictures.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Tales of the Roaming Prospector
PostPosted: Fri Apr 14, 2017 5:08 pm 
Offline
Gold Member

Joined: Wed Sep 02, 2015 10:52 pm
Posts: 1131
Location: Central Queensland, Australia
Dan&Sally wrote:
Well boys, glad to see you back in town! Lefty, Shifter, Wilson. Its been awhile. Windy weather here for a few days finally took the ice out on the river. Ice jams always create flooding and then they break and rush furiously down stream until it blocks up again. Dangerous to be near it until the reservoir ice breaks, then the river levels stay low until the June rise when the mountain snow melt reaches us. But that is the cycle of the mighty Missouri river, all the rivers and creeks that feed it are safe and fair game. So during this spring thaw I have managed to build benches in the garage and run electrical and partially insulate. Timur Sharaborov a good Russian friend living in Manatoba, Canada has been helping me find working equipment. Trim saws, cabbing grinders, even found a graves facitor but I was too broke to get it. He has contacts that provide him with stunning demantoid garnet with horsetail inclusions. :mrgreen:
The next project for this spring is to build my jewelers bench, I have the basic desk and have the plans for the build but decided to change up the classic design for one I am more comfortable working from. A nice 6" piece of railroad will get faced and milled then drilled for a quick change bench pin system. A little different but after tying fishing flies for years Im very comfortable working this way.
A few things to kill the time waiting for the season to start. Then this year I will have only one serious trip in the fall and fill the rest with short run weekend trips


Cheers Dan!

Good to hear that you're well on your way with your jeweller's set-up. I'm nearly there myself, jeweller-friend brought out his burn out kiln that he no longer uses and put it in my little workshop last weekend. He'll bring the centrifuge out soon (it needs a new crucible though) and then I should finally be able to start making the jewellery I promised Marjorie.......um, some time ago :)

Friend's gold and gem sluice nearly complete, hopefully we'll give it it's first test run in a few weeks time. He has a friend with a cattle property nearby, guy says we can go prospecting there any time and stay in the house which is vacant (he lives in town). Given the topography of the place, I think he'd be better off running mountain goats than cattle, but what is tough on cattle looks promising for prospectors, the place consists largely of granite outcrops with mafic volcanic intrusions dotted about the place. Be plenty of water for sluicing after the floods as well. A lot of gold was won from the area in the 1800's and early 1900's, be interesting to see what turns up.

The day after tomorrow I'm going on my first fossicking outing of the season, back down to the amethyst dig with the jackhammer to see if I can prove my theory that better quality crystals exist deeper down in the decomposed granite.

Cheers


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 115 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1 ... 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8  Next

All times are UTC - 4 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group
Gemology Style ported to phpBB3 by Christian Bullock