How to Process Black Sands

by Brandt
(Woods Cross, Utah)

I have a lot of black sand from different places. I would like to know the best way to get the gold out. Brandt

Stan's response: There are several ways you can process your gold-bearing black sands. The simplest way is to use a concentrating device such as a spiral wheel. There are at least a dozen such devices on the market.

Another popular method is to amalgamate your black sands with mercury. This is usually done in a rock tumbler after cleaning your black sands with lye.

You can also prepare an acid called Aqua Regia which is a combination of 1 part Nitric acid with 3 parts Hydrochloric acid. In this heated mixture, your concentrates can be taken into solution and then the pure gold can be precipitated out. The precipitate can be melted into a gold button or bar.

In my manual entitled Black Sand Bonanza, I give the exact procedures and necessary ingredients for all of these methods. Here is the page where the manual is described:

You must always use EXTREME CAUTION when working with mercury and acids. They are very toxic and can even be deadly if not handled correctly.

I hope that helps Brandt.

Comments for How to Process Black Sands

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Black sand smelt but can't find gold
by: Sheakh Payel

I collect some blacksand from yellow river sand use by magnet. But when I smelt black sand by borax & soda ash when I finish smelting blacksand I did not see any gold in bottom of crucible. So haw can I find out gold from my blacksand. Please help me

You Need to Figure Out How Much Gold is in the Black Sands First
by: Lost Adams

Brant, You need to visually identify how much AU is in the Black Sands (BS). The only way to do that so you know positively that it is cost effective to extract the AU in your BS.

I use a 40x to 80x mineral or dissection microscope. You can SEE how much is in there before you spend money to extract the AU.

If there is a good amount in the BS, then I use good ole 20 Mule Team Borax to Flux the BS. You can use some test lead to capture the Non-Ferrous values by using an acetylene torch and a carbon block or a charcoal briquette to flux the AU with.

Charles Butler of California sells a set of pamphlets to use the acetylene torch to do assays with. Just Google those keywords. I'm not sure that he is still alive but I think his son and wife still sell then out of Butler Labs.

Another Book to get is Recovery and Refining of Precious Metals by C W Amen.

Sincerely, Bill "Lost Adams"

have used the microwave
by: Brandt

But don't have there flux and only got gold one time using mine tryed to buy a pound of theres to test it. but they will only sell 5 pounds. Dont want that much if it dont work. microwave good for treating your ore samples helps to get the gold out.

Wheels Do Not Separate Black Sand from Fine Gold
by: Anonymous

I'm not sure I have done it correctly but i have used two wheel and quite extensively and I would say they are Junk for separating Black sand from Gold... I've read the advertisments also and I have yet to see them really live up to what they say.. If you have really done it please explain the meathod.... they will separate the black sand and gold from the gravel but I really think thats about all you can hope to do with them.

Black Sand Separation
by: R. Nicholas

I'd use a wheel. Real fast. And a lot less Dangerous.

Microwave Gold Refining
by: Anonymous

You can do it in your Microwave also. You need to buy a kit on line but at least you do not have to work with Toxic chemicals.

But if you use your wife's Microwave you might still suffer some toxic side effects.

Stan's response: Thank you very much for that comment. Now that you mention it, I have seen that unit for sale on the internet. It looks extremely interesting and useful.

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