Iron Miners
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 Post subject: primitive mining
PostPosted: Mon Nov 23, 2009 11:11 pm 
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Hi everyone, I’m a college student here in Hawai’i and I’m doing a very intensive research project on how a person could go from absolutely nothing to building modern technologies that we enjoy today. I am talking about going from being nude in the wilderness to eventually building a modern computer. <- (this is the scenario) I want to emphasize early on that right now this is theory only and I am not going to try any of this YET. (eventually i will though)

Right now at this point in my research, I am at the stage of learning mining. I have already learned everything that I would need to know in theory to be able to build a neolithic village. therefore next i would need to get a good grasp on mining. I say this because according to my timeline of technology, the order is mining, metallurgy, and metalworking then woodworking. So, with mining, what I am concerned with is extracting mineral rocks, and metal ores. With my ultimate goal in my mind, I don’t think I’m concerned with modern mining. Primitive mining should be my focus only I think. So, tools that the loner would have in my scenario are stone and bone tools. Correct me if I’m wrong but some mineral rocks and metal ores will be able to be removed with the stone/bone tools. When trying to extract minerals/ores that are too hard for the primitive tools, those will have to be removed by exploding them off of their source. This is done by building a fire on the rocks/ores and then will it is really hot douse the rocks/ores with water and they should explode. Collect the ores/rocks and that’s it. Then you move on to the metallurgy part.

So, my post here is to confirm that my way of thinking is correct. If not, all experts here please correct me and inform me of the proper way to go about this. I will include all this info in my research paper. Thank you very much!


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2009 6:40 am 
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Joined: Tue Sep 16, 2008 6:51 pm
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Location: SW Indiana
Your idea of basic extraction seems sound. The problem I see is that you need to be in a location that has the correct geology. You need the knowledge of which rocks are ore bearing. And the ore needs to be on an outcrop or reasonably near the surface.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2009 6:50 am 
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Ok, thank you Doug. So, you as an expert, feel I can move on to metallurgy now? I have already posted in a metallurgy forum also but I just want to be sure. :)


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2009 3:28 pm 
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Joined: Tue Sep 16, 2008 6:51 pm
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Location: SW Indiana
Who says I'm an expert. You just got one free comment. I would wait and see what some of the others have to say. Give it a few days, unless you have some project deadline.

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 29, 2009 4:46 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 20, 2005 11:33 pm
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Location: Above the Sterling Hill Mine
A lot of it also depends on where the mine is located and your environment. In the case of Iron Mines in the east, in the old days drill holes were done by hand. You'd basically have a miner swinging a hammer at a drill bit. They would go by hand, one swing at a time (or a group of miners if you wanted to make progress) until they had a series of holes and they would blast using black powder. I am certainly over simplifying the process, but yes this is possible in a more modern world.. I don't know that it is practical though without more modern equipment.

In the case of coal mines or metal mines (gold for example) in sedimentary rock, many times you can easily go after your ore with a pick so long that you already have a way to get to your ore. Whether you had preexisting tunnels, or if it was a surface outcrop.

Miner Greg


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 05, 2010 2:22 am 
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Geez! My apologies for the extremely long away time I have been gone. I didn't think anyone would ever respond to my thread so I left. :oops: Thanks for the answer also, Greg. I'm sure i'll have plenty other questions to come soon.


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