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Frank Bojesen has worked in underground mining in Australia and overseas for more than thirty years. He has prospected and worked his own mines as well as other people’s – taught, supervised, managed and lectured, and spent years as a machine miner, carrying out every type and phase of underground development and production. He is still hunting for gold in the Eastern Goldfields, where he lives.
During his years of mining and prospecting he has often helped and advised prospectors with no experience of underground mining. They have complained about the total lack of relevant handbooks in bookshops and libraries, and some of them suggested that he write one himself. Now he has. There are no other practical guides to small scale underground mining on a shoestring, written by a practical miner of vast experience. This is how it’s done – by somebody who has been doing it all his life. This handbook is a useful, easy to read, even entertaining assistant to prospectors and small operators everywhere. It has many uses. To name just a few: For your own mining, to learn how underground mining works and for exploring underground mines.
It describes step by step how to develop and run a small underground mine cheaply, safely and profitably in today’s world. Starting with leases and permits, it takes you through every stage from road building and camp construction to the final shutdown. It explains each operation in detail in plain language, with many drawings, diagrams and photos: First shaft sinking and other forms of access, then development of levels and orebodies, ventilation, transport and haulage, pumping and other services, safety and all else needful for efficient mining. It tells you how to find cheaper machinery and gear, as well as what you can make yourself – and shows how to make it. The photos give real life situations from current mining of this sort. To further increase its usefulness, the volume ends with a large glossary of underground mining terms and a practical index to ease searching and cross-checking.
It is written in a simple and easy to read style, with examples from real life to illustrate various points. Several among the mining and non-mining people who have read the manuscript have called it entertaining and amusing, while others have said that they found it “an easy read”, although it is also thorough and in-depth.