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Drilling For Oregon Sunstone

by Gary Kratochvil
Sunstone Mining Company (miners of natural Oregon sunstone) operates an extensive number of Bureau of Land Management (BLM) mining claims. The Sunstone Mining Company is owned by Gary Kratochvil. As we explore our claims for new deposits of feldspar the question is where to start digging? Production mining is performed with the use of heavy equipment like a backhoe, loader or excavator. We cannot dig up the entire desert in search of sunstone with heavy equipment. Drilling test holes will yield very useful information and provide some guidance where to start digging with heavy equipment.
In the short video below you will see the process of prospecting for Oregon sunstone with the use of a drill. As drilling begins we watch the cuttings coming out of the hole. With experience you can tell when it is time to check the cuttings more closely. The drilling penetration rate will vary depending on the type of material being drilled. The color and size of the particles will also vary.The bore hole is cleaned out by compressed air. Compressed air is pumped down the inside of the drill pipe and through the bit. The cuttings are blown to the surface and caught by hand for examination. If you are drilling in a potential mining site there will be ground up particles of feldspar in the cuttings. When you find feldspar in the cuttings you note how much drill pipe is in the hole being drilled. This will tell you how deep to dig with heavy equipment. The video will give you a better understanding and appreciation of what it is like to prospect for sunstone.
This article is also published at Sunstone Mining Company.
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© 2008 Gary Kratochvil - All rights reserved