Note From Tim Knight: The post below is an unusual one for Slope, as you will soon see. I would not normally publish a post such as this, but I am doing so principally out of gratitude to BDI who has provided dozens of outstanding submissions in the past (to say nothing of his constant presence in the comment stream). However, because the post does allude to a business opportunity, I want it made absolutely crystal clear that the presence of this post is in no way an endorsement. I have absolutely nothing to do with the business at all, nor do I vouch for it or potentially benefit from it in any way. I am simply letting BDI had some Sunday air time to talk about something he’s doing and what I think are the fairly interesting facts behind it. Caveat Sloper!
It’s now entirely clear, even to an Idiot Savant, that the juiced U.S. equity markets are apparently forever handing out gratuitous fiat paper money to all Wall street players that are ass-tute enough to sit in Ben (who’s your daddy) Bernanke’s lap. So, I thought it would be a good time to acknowledge a different style of guy, who is actually working to earn honest hard money, by pouring his blood, sweat and tears, not to mention a good portion of his life savings, into dredging for the real stuff on the remote rivers of Liberia, in west Africa.
SOH’s very own “Sparky” aka Mark Auger, having conclusively discovered some of the last virgin river drainage on the western horn of Africa which are amenable to alluvial gold dredging operations, promptly acquired the appropriate mining licenses to conduct gold exploration and exploitation within River Cess, Liberia. His mining company, Tiehnpo Resources LLC, has now officially obtained all necessary permits and has been duly approved & licensed as the local operator of record.
Liberia, once bogged down by two brutal civil conflicts ending in 2003, has emerged as an African “Tiger”. The peace accord and subsequent re-election of president and Nobel peace prize recipient Ellen Johnson Sirleaf (who Mark has met), has achieved a lasting and unshakable peace with the full support of the UN and several multinational concerns. Liberia is finally open for business again, as are her previously inaccessible resources.
Liberia, located on the western horn of Africa, has substantial commercially recoverable gold, and is one of the most highly mineralized areas in the world. During the past 6 years, over $12 billion dollars has been invested in Liberia’s mineral industry with two multi-million ounce gold mines scheduled to open within the next few years.
Tiehnpo Resources (Tiehnpo) has conducted gold exploration on rivers located in the southeast region of Liberia near the Putu Mountains, and while conducting dredging operations on rivers located in this region adjacent to the Bukon Jedeh gold district, Tiehnpo has discovered some of the last untouched rivers of West Africa which are amenable to gold dredging operations.
EARLY EXPLORATION AND PILOT DREDGING:
On account of its successful exploration work, Tiehnpo Resources LLC, has now confirmed the following concerning the Cestos River deposits:
Test work has shown the primary gravel to be loose and not compacted. We have encountered relatively small amounts of calcified gravel.
The river gravel is gold bearing in grades from 0.5g/m to 5.0g/m. The pay gravel runs through the high energy portion of the river bottom.
Extensive pilot mining of the gravel with eight inch Keene dredges has achieved daily production rates of 50 to 100 grams of Au per full day of operation.
Proven and verifiable production rates have presently determined within the 15 miles of river claims an inferred resource calculation of 42,040 oz Au.
During 2011 Resource Management Group (RMG), a wholly owned Liberian subsidiary of Tiehnpo Resources LLC, sent its exploration management team to River Cess after local contacts had indicated that gold had been found along the banks of the river. Further evaluation revealed that many small alluvial miners were finding gold in the tributaries along the Cestos River. Immediately after these findings, other more sophisticated mining concerns arrived with Chinese made dredges (gravel pumps) and began to have success On the River channel itself.
RMG in the following dry season (2012) began a survey of the River and conducted its own exploration and sampling along the river. After finding virgin areas that showed promising gold values, RMG rented a D7 bulldozer, large trucks and began to build roads to access areas on the river that returned higher grades of recoverable gold.
In 2013 RMG purchased radios, generator, 4X4 vehicles, tools etc and constructed a camp to continue its exploration program. By using two outboard motor boats with local “skin” divers that swim to the river bottom, divers gathered loose gravel into sacks and hauled it back to the surface (by pull rope) where RMG was able to determine that the River has economical quantities of gold. This basic process has proven to be very reliable for sedimentary surveying.
Once the river claims had been mapped and paid for, RMG purchased a Keene 8in dredge, concentrators, and other supplies to begin pilot mining the river. During the last few days of April of 2013 RMG worked a section of the river for 5 days and averaged 50 grams of gold per day with gold sales of $1,820 per day.
In May 2013 RMG applied for additional mining claims and moved the 8in Dredge to other areas on the river for testing. This new area was worked for five days which produced $12,000 in gold sales, or $2,400 per day.
These most recent production rates were in higher value sections of the river but as a bulldozer was not available to make roads it was very difficult to access this part of the river. Further testing of the river revealed that the gold content of the gravel is equal and in many places higher than previously tested sections. By June of 2013 the rainy season fell upon RMG exploration team and the river grew swollen requiring that all operations be halted.
The man himself, large and in charge, on the Cestos River. View video clip below!
CURRENT EXPANSION PLANS:
In 2012-13 Tiehnpo ran two 8 inch Keene exploration dredges on the river. The actual production results achieved have determined that each individual pilot dredge recovers an average of 50 grams of gold per day. Tiehnpo is assured that production volumes can readily be increased to 200 grams per day ($8K +/-10%) deploying a larger custom built 10 inch jet-suction dredge. In order to achieve this aim, Tiehnpo is in the process of raising the necessary working capital to further develop its established commercial mining site operations, and to complete the retrofitting modifications on a custom designed jet-suction super dredge aptly named “The Liberian Lady”
The Dredge, originally designed for river dredging in the USA, is being modified for use in the jungles of West Africa. Tiehnpo is in the process of modifying the Dredge by building an all aluminum working platform, walk ways, outboard motor mounts, two 40hp outboard engines, GPS, depth finder, hot water heater for wet suits, on board spiral and Jig classifier, riffles modification, new suction hoses, two way communication, and diving lights. The Dredge also requires that the engine and pump to be gone through and readied for the next 200 day mining season. It is extremely easy to operate, is almost maintenance free, and will operate at depths of 40ft to 50ft with maximum suction where the highest gold values are recovered.
Tiehnpo Resources plans to use the 10 inch Super dredge as the primary dredging equipment for the Project. The custom dredge is simple, efficient, site specific and conservatively rated to handle 50 cubic meters of material per hour. It consists of a platform built on aluminum pontoons, a 167 hp diesel engine, one (1) 3500 GPM Berkley water pump, and a 25ft long sluice box for recovery. It employs only tried and proven technology, is constructed from industrial grade components, and is exceptionally reliable.
The robust dredge has the capacity to sluice 50 cubic meters of material per hour, using a team of four divers and one operator. The operator prepares the dredge on the diving site. The divers enter the water and “blow” open a hole in the river bottom and begin “suction” of the gravels to the surface. The gravel is then sluiced separating the heavy aggregates from the lighter material. The site manager oversees the clean up of the sluice from the dredge and transports the concentrates to camp for final clean up.
Tiehnpo Resources plans to container ship the 10 inch Super dredge “The Liberian Lady” to River Cess, Liberia for the 2014 Season. Work will continue 8 hours per day, six days per week (weather permitting). A labor intensive operation is expected requiring divers to take 3hr shift rotations. The production estimate allows for time lost during start up, shift change, and shut down each day, and for any scheduled and unscheduled maintenance. With the Liberian Lady (Dredge) processing 400 cubic meters per day and assuming a conservative half gram of gold per cubic meter, anticipated daily production would average approximately 200 grams or (6.4 ounces Au).
Tiehnpo Resources estimates the following gross operating income. The recoverable grade of pay gravel from half a gram to two grams per cubic meter of .920 fine gold. No value is assigned to the overburden or the underlying clay. The following table presents the range of quantities that the established target area has confirmed expected production yields. Additionally, Tiehnpo is concurrently developing a diver-less option for the custom built Jet-Suction dredge which could potentially increase the below mentioned results by a factor of four.
CALCULATED PRODUCTION RESULTS:
Seasonal Production: 10in dredge x 50 c/m x 8hr per dredge per day x .5 c/m Au x 200 day season = 1000 oz. Gold
New Dredge Estimated Volume Values:
(Low end estimate) x 0.5 g/m Au = 500 oz. @ $1250.00 per ounce = $625,000.00 per season
(Expected estimate) x 1.0 g/m Au =1000 oz. @ $1250.00 per ounce = $1,250,000.00 per season
(High end estimate) x 2.0 g/m Au = 2000 oz. @ $1250.00 per ounce = $2,500,000.00 per season
The previously committed risk capital which funded the initial exploration findings and successful pilot mining operations has substantiated the viability of the claims on the Liberian concessions. The determined Gold yield has now been established and confirmed.
The next phase is basic operational dredging execution which is inherently less speculative in nature. If you are as interested as this Idiot Savant is, you can visit the following links for further detailed information on Mark’s dredging enterprise in Liberia:
Mt. Nimba Liberia