recovering gold from sodium cyanide.?

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Re: recovering gold from sodium cyanide.?

Postby upcyclist » November 7th, 2016, 4:15 pm

g_axelsson wrote:What do you all think about starting a major thread for cyanide where we give references to resources and other major threads. Then we start a number of threads for different aspects of the cyanide process.

I suggest the following threads :

- Cyanide main thread : Contains references to documents and other major threads with a first post edited to add links when something new appears.

And the following minor threads :
- Cyanide destruction
- Cyanide equipment
- Cyanide leaching
- Cyanide legality
- Cyanide safety
- Cyanide storage
- Cyanide toxicity
- Cyanide waste
- Recovery of metals from cyanide solution

Question for ya Göran: What do you mean when you say threads? Are you talking about creating and maintaining posts? Subtopics? What you posted above is a great outline for organization, but I think they would work better as sections of a wiki page (coughGRWcough) than threads. Once you're in a forum, there really is no organization except for the Topics & Subtopics. People will post their thoughts/ideas/problems, and we'll discuss.

Even if we did a subtopic (Processes: Chemical Processes: Cyanide), so many posts would fall outside of it because often the questioner ("What do I do with these pins?") doesn't know that one possible answer is a cyanide process. Such a post would continue with the pros & cons of cyanide vs. other methods.

Now, if we're talking a master thread/post in The Library, that could work well. That would be a moderator-curated thread (or set of threads as you proposed above).

Or maybe I'm just not getting your groove?
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Re: recovering gold from sodium cyanide.?

Postby anachronism » November 7th, 2016, 7:22 pm

Ken

Apology accepted. Let's turn this whole thing into a positive.

Jon
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Re: recovering gold from sodium cyanide.?

Postby g_axelsson » November 7th, 2016, 8:29 pm

Ahemmm... what a coincidence that there is a similar list on http://goldrefiningwiki.com/mediawiki/index.php/Cyanide :mrgreen:

With a thread I mean like this thread. No new sections or subsections are needed. By starting each thread with an "intro and index"-post we can always go back and edit it to put links in to the other threads. That way we only need to keep track of the main thread. It can be put in the library when it is complete.

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Re: recovering gold from sodium cyanide.?

Postby nickvc » November 8th, 2016, 3:59 am

I personally feel that as this ferrocyanide and its various forms is fairly easily available that we would be remiss not to cover the safety aspects and also the safe and legal disposal of it, as I have stated many times we are under the spotlight of government agencies so facing the potential dangers to the users, other people and animals and the environment is almost mandatory now, I am also fairly certain that this material will become a controlled substance within a fairly short time especially if we have any disasters or deaths, but in the meantime we need to be seen to be doing our utmost to protect where and when we can.

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Re: recovering gold from sodium cyanide.?

Postby kurtak » November 10th, 2016, 4:48 am

g_axelsson wrote:What do you all think about starting a major thread for cyanide where we give references to resources and other major threads. Then we start a number of threads for different aspects of the cyanide process.

I suggest the following threads :

- Cyanide main thread : Contains references to documents and other major threads with a first post edited to add links when something new appears.

And the following minor threads :
- Cyanide destruction
- Cyanide equipment
- Cyanide leaching
- Cyanide legality
- Cyanide safety
- Cyanide storage
- Cyanide toxicity
- Cyanide waste
- Recovery of metals from cyanide solution

Göran


Absolutely - considering the safety issue of working with cyanide & the fact that there has been some discussion of it already - but - much of that discussion scattered here & there with "bits" of info "here & there" --- I think (as others have also voiced) that a thread specific to cyanide is the prudent thing to do

Whether as A thread the covers all the above suggestions - or - broke into threads pertaining to each aspect doesn't really matter --- the important thing is that we cover all aspects as a matter of prudence to provide complete information on working with cyanide in away that it can be referenced &/or research as a "complete" information

Threads - as a result of on going discussion tend to get cluttered (as has this one) so A thread & or multiple threads could then be edited &/or linked for quick reference through the Library as a "Library Topic"

I can't open the discussion as I have never worked with it - so will have to leave to those that have - I am certainly interested though

Kurt


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Re: recovering gold from sodium cyanide.?

Postby 4metals » November 10th, 2016, 9:25 am

I think the first post in the series should be to open a few eyes and help focus on safety and that would be Cyanide and why it can kill you. And then we can explain the path of toxicity and some safety, and then get into using it for recovery.

I will start a thread when I get home this weekend.
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Re: recovering gold from sodium cyanide.?

Postby autumnwillow » November 10th, 2016, 11:21 am

Make the cyanide part of the forum private.
Imagine it being public, a mess, just a mess and lives being at stake. If the cyanide forum should be opened to public it should be on how to handle it and how to treat the wastes. Not on how to use it. They need to know well first how to handle and dispose of it first.

Not sure but I think a member should pay for a test, done live (maybe thru chat?) and answer a few cyanide related questions. If he passes then off he can access the subforum. If not he better do his research first as to how to handle cyanide. It is fairly available in textbooks and search engines.

People who work with cyanide should be very responsible.

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Re: recovering gold from sodium cyanide.?

Postby anachronism » November 10th, 2016, 11:29 am

People seem to have this un-reasoned fear of cyanide, whilst they are happy to work around hot concentrated sulphuric acid, or deal with nitric acid and AR without fume hoods. Make no mistake- lives are at risk with all the other processes we use and people should not lose sight of that.

I agree that if people are stupid enough to ignore the safety factors involved with the above, then they will avoid them with cyanide. But what do we do?

Keeping people in ignorance has never worked out well in any historical context.
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Re: recovering gold from sodium cyanide.?

Postby autumnwillow » November 10th, 2016, 11:34 am

Nitric, AR and sulfuric will injure you or kill you slowly.

Cyanide poisoning will kill you quick. And not all hospitals are equipped with its antidote.

Do not compare these common acids used for refining with cyanide.

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Re: recovering gold from sodium cyanide.?

Postby patnor1011 » November 10th, 2016, 11:47 am

autumnwillow wrote:Nitric, AR and sulfuric will injure you or kill you slowly.

Cyanide poisoning will kill you quick. And not all hospitals are equipped with its antidote.

Do not compare these common acids used for refining with cyanide.


You may be surprised to hear that but cyanide is more common in recovery&refining than what you call "common acids used for refining".
Slowly or quick (killing) is not an argument.
But I do agree - If you're afraid of wolves, don't go to the woods.
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Re: recovering gold from sodium cyanide.?

Postby anachronism » November 10th, 2016, 11:50 am

autumnwillow wrote:Nitric, AR and sulfuric will injure you or kill you slowly.

Cyanide poisoning will kill you quick. And not all hospitals are equipped with its antidote.

Do not compare these common acids used for refining with cyanide.


I disagree - I'm not downplaying the dangers of cyanide, rather upgrading the dangers of the other acids and reagents. Not enough respect is given to the dangers of the common acids. We should treat the others with the same respect as cyanide and this doesn't happen enough.
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Re: recovering gold from sodium cyanide.?

Postby autumnwillow » November 10th, 2016, 12:26 pm

patnor1011 wrote:
You may be surprised to hear that but cyanide is more common in recovery&refining than what you call "common acids used for refining".
Slowly or quick (killing) is not an argument.
But I do agree - If you're afraid of wolves, don't go to the woods.


The context of common is this forum, not outside this forum.
I am not arguing anything in the statement I made.
Your third line does not seem to make any sense. Does one have to be brave in order to deal with cyanide? I think that person should be knowledgeable not brave.

I am sorry I think I am tired but I cannot understand your statements.

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Re: recovering gold from sodium cyanide.?

Postby 4metals » November 10th, 2016, 12:39 pm

Make the cyanide part of the forum private.


This could cause more problems than it is worth. How will we decide who to let in? How do you prove you are careful enough to be let in? Everyone assumes they are qualified and I believe the forum has more responsibility if we choose a member to join the private club and he or she ends up getting hurt.

Refining with chemicals or smelting is a grown up sport, the forum has made disclaimers about the dangers and every chemical or red hot furnace carries unique threats if used improperly. We expect our members to follow directions and we strive to correct any members posing questions if they are heading in the wrong direction.

In the end I think it is wiser to broach the cyanide subject with facts and good procedures than to bury our heads in the sand and make believe it doesn't exist. Cyanide is real, cyanide is widely used for refining, and we have grown enough as a forum to discuss the topic in a way that our members can use the information in a safe and environmentally sound way to process their precious metals.
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Re: recovering gold from sodium cyanide.?

Postby goldsilverpro » November 10th, 2016, 1:02 pm

4metals wrote:
Make the cyanide part of the forum private.


This could cause more problems than it is worth. How will we decide who to let in? How do you prove you are careful enough to be let in? Everyone assumes they are qualified and I believe the forum has more responsibility if we choose a member to join the private club and he or she ends up getting hurt.

Refining with chemicals or smelting is a grown up sport, the forum has made disclaimers about the dangers and every chemical or red hot furnace carries unique threats if used improperly. We expect our members to follow directions and we strive to correct any members posing questions if they are heading in the wrong direction.

In the end I think it is wiser to broach the cyanide subject with facts and good procedures than to bury our heads in the sand and make believe it doesn't exist. Cyanide is real, cyanide is widely used for refining, and we have grown enough as a forum to discuss the topic in a way that our members can use the information in a safe and environmentally sound way to process their precious metals.

I totally agree with 4metals.
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Re: recovering gold from sodium cyanide.?

Postby autumnwillow » November 10th, 2016, 1:06 pm

The very bad thing about cyanide is its fumes are not visible to the naked eye. Unlike acids where you could see or smell them and have time to go away. Cyanide is just fast.

An ORP meter and pH meter should be done on the test.

Whatever you guys decide on to I'll help with my experience on cyanide.

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Re: recovering gold from sodium cyanide.?

Postby anachronism » November 10th, 2016, 1:32 pm

If you're running cyanide at pH 11 you're not going to have clouds of HCN coming off the solution.
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Re: recovering gold from sodium cyanide.?

Postby goldsilverpro » November 10th, 2016, 1:46 pm

autumnwillow wrote:The very bad thing about cyanide is its fumes are not visible to the naked eye. Unlike acids where you could see or smell them and have time to go away. Cyanide is just fast.

An ORP meter and pH meter should be done on the test.

Whatever you guys decide on to I'll help with my experience on cyanide.

In general, the fumes are not as hazardous as most acid fumes, except those generated (HCN) by combining cyanide and any acid or from solutions with too low a pH. Fumes (mainly hot fumes) off of an alkaline cyanide solution can, however, produce a very annoying skin irritation called cyanide itch. I covered a lot of this is this post:
viewtopic.php?f=37&t=24567&p=259896&hilit=cyanide+itch#p259896

I would guess that 4metals and I have much more experience working with cyanide, hands-on, than anyone else on the forum. I would guess that I worked with it daily for a period of 25 years. Sometimes with huge quantities, like 1000's of gallons. To me, it makes it safer to talk about it rather than to keep it a secret. When we only allow the elite to read about it, the ignorant or those not allowed to read about it could mess with it and end up dying.

When you know and obey the rules - don't eat it, don't drink it, don't swim in it, don't smoke, eat, or drink around it, or don't add acid to it - it can be far safer than concentrated sulfuric, strong lye solutions, or aqua regia.

For several years In the late 60's, I spent at least a day or two a week in electroplating shops in L.A., troubleshooting plating problems. At that time, there were many 100's of plating shops in L.A. Every shop had at least one (and usually, several) tank filled with a cyanide solution. Some held 1000's of gallons and as much as 1/2 pound of cyanide salts per gallon. I never heard of anyone being hurt or poisoned from cyanide in those shops. They were taught the basic safety rules and adhered to them. At the same time, there were many acid accidents where people were severely injured.
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Re: recovering gold from sodium cyanide.?

Postby 4metals » November 10th, 2016, 3:30 pm

I never heard of anyone being hurt or poisoned from cyanide in those shops. They were taught the basic safety rules and adhered to them.


For years, if I couldn't find an experienced refiner to hire (which is difficult anyway to find, even today) I would advertise for workers with electroplating experience and train them to refine. I always found them to be well trained to be safe around chemicals, that is a good foundation to teach someone to refine.
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Re: recovering gold from sodium cyanide.?

Postby Shark » November 10th, 2016, 3:42 pm

My opinion from the aspect of a person who knows virtually nothing about cyanide, other than it can kill you.

Many who want to know how to use cyanide from a cost or efficiency stand point have two primary choices. They can go to someone (or a group of people) who are knowledgeable in it's use, or they can just continue to experiment on their own (as seen in the Eco-Goldex thread and other venue's like youtube). I have no plans at the moment to use any form of cyanide and I can see where it's use could be the preferred method for certain materials. In a month or a year, I might be wanting to try it so if I start studying now, I should be ahead of the curve when I am ready. Last year if some one told me I would be melting copper and running a copper cell I would not have took them serious, but I still done some studying on the subject. When 4metals started the post on smelting and the copper cell I was ready to give it a try, but I knew enough by then to be able to follow most of what he was saying. A few question and a bit more reading and I have been fairly happy with the results.

I would much prefer to learn from the senior members here than youtube. I don't much mind experimenting with things, but somethings are just easier, safer and quicker to learn with good help. If this thread gets started I will be reading very closely just in case I need to use the information sometime down the road.
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Re: recovering gold from sodium cyanide.?

Postby anachronism » November 10th, 2016, 9:06 pm

4metals wrote:
A brief summary of the methodology Jon is using, while he has posted it before, would be useful here to get this thread back on track.


4metals.

My apologies I missed this part of your post earlier.

In the interests of getting this thread back on track.

Stripping the gold from a cyanide leach.

The first option is zinc. This is all well and good until you have a leach accelerator and/or excess CN- and oxidant in the solution. At this point you can end up in a loop whereby your gold precipitates out and is redissolved into solution in a similar manner to having Nitric present in an AR solution. If you are using a CN leach with merely air as the oxidant then zinc works extremely well but many leaches contain H2O2 or MBNSS or other proprietory additions.

Second option is electrowin. You are passing your leach liquor through a cell which is stripping the metals from the liquor onto the carbon cathode. The advantages are that your liquor is then devoid of metals and can be processed back into your original leach with minimal degradation of the CN content of the leach. The cathode which contains the metals can be processed in AR and reused. The down side is the expense of the rectifier and electrowin cell itself but overall it is the most cost effective way of doing this.

Third option is activated carbon. You load the carbon with the metals in the leach and again pass the liquor back into the leach tank to carry on stripping metal. The upside again is that you return a stripped liquor which is reusable. The downside is that you then have to ash the carbon in a suitable furnace and process the ash. Your costs are activated carbon, and a good furnace.

Options two and three will both work using oxidants and accelerators in the leach. It's all a trade off you just have to pick the best overall solution to suit your budget and your base material.

For ALL the above an AAS is almost essential because you need to know when the tenor of your solution is high, or low respectively. Not to mention that you also need to know when it is completely spent.

I hope that helps in some small way guys. There is a lot more to this and I would be more than happy to contribute to the cyanide section that is planned to provide more clarity.

Jon
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Re: recovering gold from sodium cyanide.?

Postby autumnwillow » November 10th, 2016, 11:20 pm

I have a small refinery with one staff, I never let him work with cyanide since he makes small mistakes that will not work with cyanide. Small mistakes in cyanide can lead to death. He has five kids so I'm not risking it. I am always the one working with cyanide. I also get those itches even when just working with less than 5L of solution.

Just look at the mess other people make in this forum with acids, imagine that being cyanide. We may not have the time to tell them to stop, they may not have the time to post in the forum to ask what they did wrong.

Maybe I am wrong though, maybe we should give out the information since some members will attempt to do it anyway. And it is already being openly discussed here. A trial could be done to see, if too much mess is being generated then close that forum, if it works then that's good!

When I registered here 5 years ago, after reading so much I told myself that I should just hire a chemist with all these chemicals that I am not familiar with until I decided to study on my own. Being with chemicals is just about knowing what they are, what they can do and how to use them. Everything around us are chemicals.

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Re: recovering gold from sodium cyanide.?

Postby Lino1406 » November 11th, 2016, 4:38 am

I want to highlight two risks of cyanide:
1.Absorption through wounds of over 1g
2.Heavy than air cyanogene (CN)2 and/or cyanogene chloride (CNCl) with noxious smell, appearing on cyanide oxidation/chlorination

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Re: RE: Re: recovering gold from sodium cyanide.?

Postby muhammad Shahzad » April 17th, 2018, 4:14 am

Lino1406 wrote:There are several answers. For example, Zn powder, Al powder/foil... ref:"30 and more recovery procedures"
Hi lino

Is there need to extract oxygen from cyanide solution to cementation gold with aluminium foil ?

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Re: recovering gold from sodium cyanide.?

Postby Lino1406 » April 17th, 2018, 12:39 pm

If you mean dissolved oxygen it is negligent


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