How Do I Identify Gold Dust?

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How Do I Identify Gold Dust? Empty How Do I Identify Gold Dust?

Post  Peter23 on Mon Apr 30, 2012 10:40 am

Hi Everyone,

Just a question from a newbie. Have had the rotapan out going through some old workings and panned off the concentrates and got a couple of tiny pieces, but then have been left with this very fine sand like substance in the pan. It appears to be quite heavy as it doesn't move around the pan that easiely and the fact that it's still in the pan after my hack attempt at panning (still learning the art) suggests it must be quite heavy.

What or How do I identify what this subtance is? Have looked and read a few things around the place but I was hoping to hear from the depth of knowledge on this forum as to some 'tricks of the trade'?

Cheeers,

Pete

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Post  grumpy57 on Mon Apr 30, 2012 10:01 pm

Hi Pete, Gold still looks like gold no matter how small or fine it is. Gold and/or lead will always be the heavies't thing in your gold pan and fine sand(black or pinkish) will be be the second heavies't thing. It takes patients and practice to seperate fine gold from heavy sand in your gold pan. It is not easy but the more you pan the better you will become in the art of panning. When we pan gold in Misery Creek near Ballarat the bigger gold is like grains of suger and some of the gold can be as fine as ground pepper but it is still the same colour to look at as the courser gold. Keep at it and it will easier. Happy hunting and cheers Grumpy.
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Post  Tuffy on Mon Apr 30, 2012 10:17 pm

Buy a 10x eye loop from your nearest or favorite prospecting shop, fine gold
looks like a nugget under good magnification, and seeing as your panning it
it will be very clean and contaminate free.

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Post  rc62burke on Tue May 01, 2012 9:07 am

Hi Pete
I second what Tuffy said.
A loupe is one of the forgotten tools in panning it helps you too read the the story the gold is telling you, very important if you take you prospecting to the next level and start to look for the source of the fine gold you are getting, what I mean is through the loupe you can see how much the fine stuff is worn by the action of being tumbled in the creek, or you can see if it is rough & spikey looking indicating that it is closer to the source.
Get a Loupe.
cheers
Lee
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Post  Peter23 on Tue May 01, 2012 9:26 am

Thanks guys,

Looks like i'm going shopping. It's going to be hard to walk out of a prospecting shop with only one small item though Wink !

Have had another go at panning the remaining heavys and it does look like very small gold pieces mixed up with other particles. Will have to get the technique sorted with the panning and then get my eye in with the loupe.

Cheers again,
Pete

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Post  philski on Thu May 17, 2012 6:21 pm

Flour gold will still sit high up in the pan above any black sands etc, regardless of size, just settle it well and use half or even a quarter the water you would normally to separate it out. The backwash and tap method helps pull it back up the lip and is great on fine gold. I use a loupe 10x triplet with LED light to sort it out and carry it with me religiously. Black sands are rarely just black sand and a Loupe opens it all up all its beauty for all to see. The one with the ring of LEDs is the best. approx $20 on ebay. 10x triplet so it conforms to Gemologists needs and the gem trade.

as a tip if you get 2 loupes and look through them both just right, you can get approx magnification 100x, a cheap field microscope and invaluable tool.
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