How to Extract Grain-Sized Gold in Dirt?

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Actually, it is smaller. Is is more like glitter-sized. What process do I use to extract it?
 

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  • #2
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Due to gold's density (specific gravity) you can place your ore in water and mix it well. Turn it into a slurry. All the gold will sink to the bottom.

Check out some online videos on gold panning. Even lead weights and bullets will roll around in a pan of water. The gold sticks like it is nailed there.

If you see 'glittery' stuff, it is probably pyrite, not gold. Gold really doesn't doesn't glitter.
 
  • #3
turbo
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If you see 'glittery' stuff, it is probably pyrite, not gold. Gold really doesn't doesn't glitter.
Right. More like a warm yellow glow. I love panning for gold and it's always fun to see that glow in the dregs as you slosh out the lighter stuff.
 
  • #4
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Yeah, the glitter-like gold doesn't sink favorably either. Are you stating that even glitter-size gold sinks? Is there any other kind of test I can run on it?
 
  • #5
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IF it's gold, it should sink, as buoyancy is a function of density and gold is very dense, no matter the size of the particles.
 
  • #6
turbo
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Yeah, the glitter-like gold doesn't sink favorably either. Are you stating that even glitter-size gold sinks? Is there any other kind of test I can run on it?
Density is the best test. Even gold dust sinks. We have a river locally that contains some placer gold, and when you agitate the pan, the regular sand and dirt wash out cleanly, leaving a reddish "sand" composed of weathered garnet, which also washes out, leaving a fine dense black material, AND (if you are lucky or skillful) gold. If you are paranoid about losing even a fine particle of gold, you can take all the black material home for more careful separation, but I just dip more water, agitate, and swirl and let density do the trick.
 
  • #7
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Thanks guys. Unfortunately, it appears to be pyrite like Shootist suggested - fool's gold.
 

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