How to test rocks for gold deposit?

Gold deposits can be tested by running a variety of tests. One of which is a visual inspection by removing the loose dirt from the rock and analyzing its density. Gold is commonly confused with Pyrite (fool’s gold) the most distinct difference between gold and pyrite is in their hardness. Check the weight of the rock on a weighing scale as Gold metal is heavier than other rocks. However, weight is not the only identifying feature of real gold. One can also verify the volume of the gold in the rock by checking the volume of the rock. One can add water to a measuring cup, note the level of water, put the rock into the water, and measure the new water level by the amount of water displaced by the rock. Note the new level of water in the measuring cup and subtract the original volume from the new one. Density is the ratio of weight divided by its volume, if it is heavier there is a high probability that the rock contains gold.

Testing the mineral hardness, the mineral can take any shape when flattened and is easily scratched with a pocketknife. Pyrite is comparatively harder. On scratching Real gold against a small bit of unglazed ceramic leaves a gold streak whereas iron pyrite will leave a greenish-black colored streak. One of the most ductile and malleable metals on earth is gold. Its high malleability allows for this metal to be beaten into thin sheets. Another test is to check the magnetism as Gold in its pure form (being such a weak metal) is not magnetic. However, iron pyrite is attracted to magnets as it has a high iron content. 

Another test is to take a piece of rock and submerge the rock in vinegar or some other common acid and leave it for a while. The quartz and pyrite will dissolve or break up in the acid, while gold remains completely unaffected.

Still, it is advised after performing the above-mentioned tests, to conclude and then take the rock to the assayer. Professionals are trained and they have the abilities and tools to perform these tests more efficiently and can also test its gold content. At Instant Gold Refining, we use state-of-the-art XRF technology to accurately determine the concentration of different minerals and metals in your sample. Contact us today for more information on our Assaying process. We also offer smelting and refining services to those with any type of scrap gold, silver or even placer gold, With over 15 years of experience in the Precious Metals industry, we take pride in displaying principles of transparency, efficiency, and trustworthiness in our practices.

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