TORONTO (miningweekly.com) – Junior Canadian precious metals explorer Banks Island Gold on Tuesday reported that it had received the first cash flow for its efforts on a small island off the British Columbia coast, where it holds several mineral claims.
The Vancouver-based company said it had received a provisional payment of C$615 000 for the first shipment of gold concentrate from the Yellow Giant project, located on the west coast of Banks Island, about 120 km south of Prince Rupert.
The provisional payment represented 90% of the total invoice for the shipment and final settlement was expected to take place in about two months.
The first shipment was processed from about 500 t of mineralised material mined from the B10 level, or first level, at the Bob zone.
The first shipment comprised two lots. Lot 1 of 129 dry tonnes of concentrate grading 62.9 g/t gold was concentrate produced from the dense media separation (DMS) plant, and Lot 2, comprising 294 dry tonnes of concentrate grading 38.8 g/t gold, was fines material (-1 mm) that bypassed the DMS plant and was bagged and shipped at in situ grade.
The high-grade material processed from the B10 level was composed of massive sulphide mineralisation. During crushing, about 60% of the material was pulverised to below 1 mm. These fines were screened out of the crushed feed material and consequently the DMS plant did not concentrate a substantial portion of mill feed. This level of fines generation was not typical and should normally be less than 25%.
The company said that it had now rented and replaced its crushing plant with jaw-and-cone crushing units to reduce fines generation in future processing.
The Lot 2 fines material was essentially pulverised ore with very similar grades to those expected from diamond drill intersections in the area. Banks Island said it was able to negotiate and sell this material despite not meeting the contracted minimum grade of 50 g/t of gold.
In the future, all fines material would be processed using flotation once the grinding and flotation circuits had been commissioned. The company has also bought a spiral concentrator to test upgrading DMS fines material to improve the grade of this gravity concentrate as an interim measure.
BOB BULK SAMPLE
Meanwhile, Banks Island reported that underground mine development was efficiently proceeding at Bob, the first of its four high-grade gold deposits, with the Bob decline advancing at a rate of about 6 m/d. The company expected to reach the planned extraction drift for mining the majority of the bulk sample during next week.
The B30 level, or the second level, would provide mill feed from development in mineralisation and, when completed, would provide a drill platform and extraction level for bulk long-hole mining of the upper Bob zone.
The B30 level was scheduled to be complete by February 28, and the mine development required for full extraction of the Upper Bob zone scheduled to be complete by March 5. Mine development crews would then move to start development at the Tel zone.
Longhole drilling for bulk mining was scheduled to start on February 15, and continue until mid-March. Intermittent blasting of the stopes would generate ore throughout this period and the company expects to mine 9 000 t of ore from the Upper Bob zone.
"It is with great satisfaction that I report the company's first cash flow and confirmation of the high-grade gold mineralisation at Yellow Giant. Upon successful mining and processing of the Bob bulk sample, we will have a seasoned team and the resources to push towards full production at the Yellow Giant gold project.
“We are very excited about our transition to a gold producer and look forward to continuing the growth of both the Yellow Giant project and Banks Island Gold,” president and CEO Benjamin Mossman said.
The Upper Bob zone has a National Instrument 43-101-compliant combined measured and indicated resource of 7 700 t grading 40.5 g/t gold and 62 g/t silver, holding about 10 000 oz of gold and 15 000 oz of silver.
The company did not base its production decision on a feasibility study of mineral reserves, with demonstrated economic and technical viability. Banks Island had decided to put the property into production without first establishing mineral reserves supported by a compliant technical report and feasibility study.