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Dry Blowers for Gold Recovery

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AndrewGJones
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Post  nero_design Thu Jun 25, 2009 4:44 pm

Dry Blowers for Gold Recovery 151
Keen Dry Blower - used with permission from Keene Engineering


Has anyone here used or watched a Dry Blower in action?

Dry Blowers have been used since the early days (sometimes with a bellows attached) and many people relegate them to the more arid regions such as Western Australia and even Tibooburra. The gold in Tibooburra is abundant yet fairly small so it would be an ideal application there. But realistically, a Dry Blower unit can be used anywhere as long as the gold in the region is suitably abundant. I've heard that they'll capture gold as small as 0.01 of a gram (might like some confirmation on this) and recovery percentages are even higher than with a regular sluice! For those unfamiliar, the DB devices today capture the gold by Electrostatic Charge as well as with the aid of a series of riffles and hot, dry air. The old timer versions from the last century used either a hand crank or a bellows to drive the lighter soil out and retain the heavier material.

I'm seeing a few Dry Blowers in people's equipment caches - people who don't visit the desert regions - and I'd like to know if anyone has used one in a NON-arid location. As long as the soil is perfectly dry, I imagine they'd be useful anywhere.

Cheers,

Marco
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Post  Guest Thu Jun 25, 2009 10:44 pm

Hi Marco,
i own one just like the one pictured,
we used it out at Gibralta for 6 months or so and it found
very fine gold to nuggets, we can also use it when the soil is damp as the hot air it blows dries the soil.
when we pan of the keeps we sometimes even found mustard gold that floated on the surface of the water in the pan.
dusty work but its good fun.

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Post  Nomad Mon Jul 06, 2009 9:18 am

[quote="nero_design"]Dry Blowers for Gold Recovery 151
Keen Dry Blower - used with permission from Keene Engineering


Has anyone here used or watched a Dry Blower in action?

Dry Blowers have been used since the early days (sometimes with a bellows attached) and many people relegate them to the more arid regions such as Western Australia and even Tibooburra. The gold in Tibooburra is abundant yet fairly small so it would be an ideal application there. But realistically, a Dry Blower unit can be used anywhere as long as the gold in the region is suitably abundant. I've heard that they'll capture gold as small as 0.01 of a gram (might like some confirmation on this) and recovery percentages are even higher than with a regular sluice! For those unfamiliar, the DB devices today capture the gold by Electrostatic Charge as well as with the aid of a series of riffles and hot, dry air. The old timer versions from the last century used either a hand crank or a bellows to drive the lighter soil out and retain the heavier material.

I'm seeing a few Dry Blowers in people's equipment caches - people who don't visit the desert regions - and I'd like to know if anyone has used one in a NON-arid location. As long as the soil is perfectly dry, I imagine they'd be useful anywhere.

Cheers,

Marco

Hey Macro I know just the place for that thing, do you have one or thinking of getting one ?

And Gypsy what was the price of your setup? I would like to get one also as I was saying I stumbled onto a place in NSW some time ago when flying north, bad weather forced us down and we couldent get off the ground for two days so went walkabout and found a lot of specs over a very large area and very consentrated, largest was half the size of a match head, never been back there but with a gadget like that and retirement it's lookin good again.
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Post  nero_design Mon Jul 06, 2009 10:27 am

Hi Nomad,
Yes, I'm just contemplating one at the moment. I think they have a very good rate of recovery although, as Gypsy pointed out earlier, it can be a grubby experience shoveling dirt into a blower!. I'd love to get one although I'm running out of room in my garage due to my habit of not throwing too many things away!

Cheers!

Marco
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Post  Nomad Mon Jul 06, 2009 2:37 pm

[quote="nero_design"]Hi Nomad,
Yes, I'm just contemplating one at the moment. I think they have a very good rate of recovery although, as Gypsy pointed out earlier, it can be a grubby experience shoveling dirt into a blower!. I'd love to get one although I'm running out of room in my garage due to my habit of not throwing too many things away!

Cheers!

Marco

You sound like a farmer, they don't through much away, I don't give a fig how dirty I get as long as it's worth it, wanna go half ? you do the shoveling though.
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Post  Guest Sun Jul 12, 2009 9:28 pm

Hi I used a Gold Wizard with clod breaker for a couple of years north of Kal these were made in Perth worked great had a pair of wheels to make it mobile but boy it was heavy. I now have a E Z Pickins Dryvac which was brought from the US in the 70s but it has a lot of short comings which I am working to overcome as the base idea is good Regards Dave

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Post  getascripter Sun Nov 25, 2012 7:43 pm

Is there a problem with these dry blowers being driven by mechanical means?? The reason I ask is because I'm interested in adding one to my 'arsenal'. I notice that a 'Hercules' has developed a bellows version, because he believes that a motorised one would fall into the category of 'mechanical'.
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Post  goldminer997 Mon Nov 26, 2012 7:29 am

hi marco
yes i have the keen dry blower and it is a very good unit i use it down here in the canberra area the soil can be a little bit wet as the unit blows hot air through i have all so made it into a wet sluice as well , just like the high banker it does get very small gold and very easy to clean out cheers sean Very Happy
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Post  Nightjar Mon Nov 26, 2012 10:25 am

Dryblowing is a sure way to recover gold and am convinced the bellows type retains gold down to mustard if it is set up correctly and the dirt is dry, I mean dry, not slightly damp.
It is a sure way of returning everyday with a little gold as opposed to detecting.
Keeps you fit and well blended in with surroundings being covered in red dust.
Sitting down at the end of a long day, relaxing with a beer while the fines are going through the sluice tops it off.

Here are a few photos of the machine I built years ago. Powered by a 3.5hp Briggs & Stratton.

Dry Blowers for Gold Recovery Archivepotos574

Dry Blowers for Gold Recovery Archivepotos575

Dry Blowers for Gold Recovery Archivepotos576

Dry Blowers for Gold Recovery Archivepotos577



My mate going for it with our first dryblower (Falcon- Perth built)
Dry Blowers for Gold Recovery Archivepotos144

A simple sluice I just trialled, works a treat.

Dry Blowers for Gold Recovery Archivepotos109


Gold wheel, home built.

Dry Blowers for Gold Recovery Archivepotos573






Last edited by Nightjar on Thu Feb 01, 2018 12:07 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Restore photos)
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Post  someday Mon Nov 26, 2012 3:41 pm

Cool Nightjar Very Happy

Our eldest daughters father inlaw did a heck load of dryblowen in WA, never sure if he went to the doctors about it!

The quantity of gold they amalgamated after removen the larger stuff was mind bogglen, mind you they were using big machinery.
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Post  Guest Mon Nov 26, 2012 4:31 pm

only problem with any dry blower is that u need a lease to operate from..

regards
oneday69

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Post  someday Mon Nov 26, 2012 5:17 pm

Into it Ray, what yu doin on here man Very Happy
You'l do well mate, but go back to basics with your recovery gear, and you gottu stop looking at toys for answers, for your own sake!

The DB owner I was talken about, was worken the red dirt back in the 60's 70's and 80's he still had Sooooooo much gold, especially in dinner plate sized amalgams santa
I quized him at the time, cause the amalgams didn't look right to me, he turned a big fan on broke of a piece of dinner plate then arked up the oxy!
Dodgy brothers incorporated, but gold it was, most ended up on the shed floor, did he care, Nope!
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Post  AndrewGJones Tue Jan 15, 2013 12:04 pm

i thought it would be better to resurrect this thread than start a new one on the same topic!

contemplating a dryblower setup and i'm wondering what peoples experiences are with this unit?;

http://www.reedsprospecting.com.au/shop/detail/keene-mighty-midget-dryblower/

I like the fact it can run from a battery/solar set up eliminating the cost of fuel.

I've been looking into the construction and the physics behind them also, and wondering how much of their design is imitation of previous units (going back to the "Old timer" units of yester-year), and how much is actual research into the most efficient design.

One thing that seems to stand out in the designs is the height that one has to lift the dirt to feed these machines, surely having it all closer to the ground would be easier to feed. (Perhaps having the drive mechanisms somehow above and not below the unit?)

seems to me they have alot of 'easy to manufacture' thinking in them, not so much 'easy to use without buggering oneself' thinking. but that may just be the onset of middle age coming on in my thinking!

Anyone have one? Your thoughts please.

regards

andrew

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Post  Guest Tue Jan 15, 2013 12:14 pm

All I can say is about a time in the 80's at Tibboburra I was lucky enough to have water in the Waratta creek and was able to wet process some old blow dryer heaps ,well man I could live off the gold lost by the old timers ! Yes most was very fine gold but every day I got a picker or two, but I had a visit from the ranger and was stopped digging the heaps and taking it to water !!!!!!! I don't know if anything has changed in the years since Shocked

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Post  Guest Tue Jan 15, 2013 12:19 pm

AndrewGJones wrote:i thought it would be better to resurrect this thread than start a new one on the same topic!

contemplating a dryblower setup and i'm wondering what peoples experiences are with this unit?;

http://www.reedsprospecting.com.au/shop/detail/keene-mighty-midget-dryblower/

I like the fact it can run from a battery/solar set up eliminating the cost of fuel.

I've been looking into the construction and the physics behind them also, and wondering how much of their design is imitation of previous units (going back to the "Old timer" units of yester-year), and how much is actual research into the most efficient design.

One thing that seems to stand out in the designs is the height that one has to lift the dirt to feed these machines, surely having it all closer to the ground would be easier to feed. (Perhaps having the drive mechanisms somehow above and not below the unit?)

seems to me they have alot of 'easy to manufacture' thinking in them, not so much 'easy to use without buggering oneself' thinking. but that may just be the onset of middle age coming on in my thinking!

Anyone have one? Your thoughts please.

regards

andrew

I did see one years ago with a big battery and a solar panel powering a small conveyer belt with a grizzly hopper on the feed side with that V pattern on the belt it did save all the lifting for sure but it would be a pain to have to shift it a few times a day Very Happy

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Post  AndrewGJones Tue Jan 15, 2013 12:31 pm


Cheers Ark,

The conveyor would be great indeed. Even as a second unit. It would, like you say, start making shifting the units around it around an issue, but having the conveyor as a separate unit would give you the option of using the blower on its own 'till you were happy with the area, then setting up the conveyor.

I think I'll have a play around with some designs myself eventually, what you say about the old diggings is a bit of a worry if the fundamental design is the same in these 'modern' units.

anyway, not complaining, just thinking out loud!

thanks

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Post  Guest Tue Jan 15, 2013 12:43 pm

I was lucky enough to see a dryblower working on the weekend, i must say i got my brain ticking over. It was just really setup for a demo on how they work but because of the heat at the creek drying up we took it down to the creek to have a look. We went to a sandbar with some small rocks in it. I was not expecting to see much if anything as testing bars like that in the area had only ever shown few small colors.
Insted of digging down any depth we just took the surface off to allow the sand underneith to dry. Even though it has been very hot there was still a small amount of moistrure in the sand so again i was not expecting the dryblower to work well.
I was supprised at how fast it could actually process material and watching it, i had thaughts about it just being handy as a classifyer in sandy areas. We ran for 10-15 minutes and did a clean out. In the pan at the end was alot of fine colors and also a nice little picker.
We did not go through any of the tailings but all in all i was supprised how well it worked.

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Post  jc84 Sun Feb 10, 2013 6:00 pm

Looks good, can someone educate a dummy though.

same principle as a sluice except using vibration to screen off larger items and dry air to remove lighter weight items?

Are the rifles involved in 'catching' the gold, or are they there to slow down the flow of material to allow better screening?

thanks

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Post  Nightjar Mon Feb 11, 2013 11:26 am

"Are the rifles involved in 'catching' the gold, or are they there to slow down the flow of material to allow better screening?"

Correct on both points.

Set your machine up on level ground then adjust the riffle box to 21°.
When you get out on the field a simple spirit level check on the horizontal frame work will optimise your returns.
Dryblowers as the name suggests work very well with dry material, most fine/mustard gold will be lost if the material is damp.
Always swing your detector over the oversize from top screen, many specimens & nuggets have been lost by a slack operator.
When ever we come across dryblowings we immediately home in on the rock piles.

Good luck
Peter
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Post  Nightjar Mon Feb 11, 2013 11:36 am

"what you say about the old diggings is a bit of a worry if the fundamental design is the same in these 'modern' units. "

AndrewGJ,
The fundamental design does not require changing, dry feed, machine angle are the main ingredients for success.
Now the dryblowers are powered another important point, the speed of the engine must be set so the fines material flows over the riffles in a steady wave. If the engines is revving to high the material tends to jump over the riffles, if too slow the riffle box bogs down.
The oldtimers weren't very interested in the fines, too their detriment the Chinese moved in after the easy pickings were gone and returned more fine gold than the "rushes" produced. Shocked

Peter


Last edited by Nightjar on Mon Feb 11, 2013 1:57 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Post  Guest Mon Feb 11, 2013 11:43 am

Saw a 20 grm piece come off a dry blower heap in Rushworth in the 70's !!! I had noticed this heap a few times and had always said " when there's water I'll do that heap" lol ! But I didn't do it and a guy with a red Barron go over the oversize and get that piece !!! He levelled the heap and didnt get any more !!!

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Post  wazza78 Mon Feb 18, 2013 2:33 pm

Hi Nightjar and guys.

Excuse my complete lack of knowledge on this, but I have recently acquired an old, but rarely used motorised "Gold Wizard" Dryblower from my old grandad.

I was just hoping someone could explain the basic principles of how this works? The setup looks a lot extremely similar to the pictured Lasetteers Find dryblower above that Nightjar uses.

I am just wondering how/where the gold ends up?

Obviously you chuck the dirt on top? The machine is motorised to shake side to side. How does things go from there??

I only just got this yesterday from my grandad and are looking to get to know it better.

I appreciate any help..
Cheers
Waz




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Post  Nightjar Tue Feb 19, 2013 10:31 am

Hi Waz,

The use of a small engine driven bellows type dryblower is an excellent means of retrieving fine gold.
Most of the old dryblowing areas still yield gold left behind by the “old timers?”
Position the dryblower level and so the prevailing winds carry the dust away from the heap you are digging into and the intake/aircleaner of the engine. Always check the top screen of the dryblower for oversize nuggets on completion of your run, usually an hour at a time. Rake out the oversize from the machine and wave your detector over it at the end of the day.
Creeks are also a source of fine gold, use a Bannister brush and pan to sweep the bedrock clean.
The removable riffle box catches the gold on the upstream side of the riffles. The ideal angle of the riffle box when operating is 21°.
When the riffle box is removed from the dry blower, lay a piece of plastic (bin liner) on the ground and empty fines onto it. Be sure to brush the riffles to remove any fine gold trapped in weave of cloth. Empty the fines into a plastic bucket to transport back to your camp to remove gold with pan or sluice.

Just ask if you have specific questions, dryblowing apart from hard work can be rewarding if you follow a few basic guidelines.

Good luck
Peter
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Post  Jack outwest Tue Feb 19, 2013 11:51 am

Anyone know the legality of using dry blowers if not on a lease ? scratch
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Post  Guest Tue Feb 19, 2013 12:03 pm

YEP--IF U DONT HAVE A LEASE or u dont have permission from a lease holder u are not allowed to use it..
in WA at least these are the rules..

regards
oneday

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Post  Jack outwest Tue Feb 19, 2013 12:28 pm

Thanks for the info' Oneday , I think that would be the case everywhere .
Back to dry panning again Neutral
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Post  Guest Tue Feb 19, 2013 5:24 pm

in vic there ok....same old digging with hand tools only though.
no diff between dry blower or highbanker with pump.
cheers

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Post  Jack outwest Tue Feb 19, 2013 6:25 pm

Hello Fencejumper ,
So they are OK to use in Vic as long as the dirt put through is hand dug ? Smile

Cheers
Jack.
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Post  Guest Tue Feb 19, 2013 6:40 pm

Yes ! Very Happy

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Post  Guest Tue Feb 19, 2013 7:38 pm

if your thinking about one jack....i can recomend the keene 151...there great.
and there cheaper to buy from reeds w.a and ship over to the eastern states than buying one over this side of aus.
which is silly cause the importer is in melb vic then they get shipped to w.a.
i live not all that far from melb but was $1000 cheaper to ship it 3000 k's from w.a than it was to ship it just down the road????
cheers

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