Mining trucks
07-17-2015, 06:25 PM,
Mining trucks
Over the past few weeks a continuing parade of heavily loaded trucks are moving down the El Cubo road to La Presa de Olla and continue on down El Paseo or Via Panoramica. An hour or so later, empty, they head back up to the mines for another load, and another.....Does anyone know why now so much ore/rock is being regularly carried down from the Caldorones mines? The trucks must use their loud "jack" brake, using motor and low gears, to slow enough to handle the heavy vehicles down the hills and curves and topes. We hope all this truck movement it is only temporary as the level of noise pollution is uncomfortably loud. Love to complain, but to whom?
07-18-2015, 07:45 AM,
RE: Mining trucks
I assume they are our trucks (El Cubo), because of the silver price being so low we have had to double production, and our mill isn't capable of handling the ore so we have to send the extra tonnes to bolañitos mine for processing. We have high tonnes planned until at least the end of this year with the hope of finding more and continuing well into the next year.
What do you want to complain about? I can pass any complaints on but unless you have a solution there isn't anything we can do, the silver price is the main thing to blame and who knows when that will change.
There are 8 trucks parked to go today but Guanajuato is a mining town so I guess it comes with the territory.
07-18-2015, 08:19 AM,
RE: Mining trucks
Appreciate your informed reply. Best we hope for a rise in the price of silver, but forecasts are not too promising. Fully respectful of the place your industry and company have in the economic fabric here and the value of that huge investment. The complaint would be directed toward management offering any means to have the drivers, in their downward leg, to minimize noise especially in use of the jack brake and to avoid El Paseo in favor of only using Via Panoramica for the run to Bolanitos.
The entire situation reminds one of the old joke where one business partner complains they are losing money on every item they are selling. The other partner responds we have no worry, we can make it up with more volume!
07-18-2015, 09:30 AM,
RE: Mining trucks
I've heard these loud noises from El Pipila around 10:30 PM a couple of times, and I was wondering, "what is that?" Now, I know.

I figure that they have to run these trucks at night, when all the buses, bread trucks, coca-cola trucks, butane trucks, etc. aren't on the road.
07-18-2015, 10:42 AM,
RE: Mining trucks
You might think that, but no, they move constantly throughout the day.
My issue with their route has some, not all, of them driving both directions up El Paseo and thru and around the full La Presa park just as our prime visitor season is hitting stride. If they would turn off El Cubo road onto the Panoramca for the trip to/from the ore processing location to the northwest they could take their noise, smoke and mass away from one of the City's favorite resident and tourist gathering spots. The drivers are likely contractors to the mine operator who should dictate the "best" routing for everyone. That is the message I would hope the mine management to see and consider.
07-18-2015, 02:45 PM, (This post was last modified: 07-18-2015, 04:02 PM by The Duck.)
RE: Mining trucks
Did you ever wonder how much actual silver could be in one of those big dump trucks? Here are some numbers - LISA please feel free to correct them.

From Endeavour Silver's website we learn:

"El Cubo, Mexico

Plant - 1,200 tpd plant rebuilt to 1,600 tpd capacity completed mid-2013.

Grade - 2014 silver grades averaged 105 grams per tonne and gold grades averaged 1.59gram per tonne.

Infrastructure - Approximately 20 minute drive outside of the city of Guanajuato, good road access, power and water plus trained workforce on site.

Land Package - approximately 8,100 hectares (20,124 acres)"

So assume each one of those big dump trucks carry 10 tonnes: 10 x 105gr = 1050 grams [ a kilo ] How do they make money?

"New York Silver Spot Price (24hrs) Jul 18, 2015 at 14:58 EST
Silver Price Per Ounce $ 14.93
Silver Price Per Gram $ 0.48
Silver Price Per Kilo $ 480.01 "

1 kilo of silver would then be .48/gr x 1000grs = $480 per truck load of 10 tonnes.

But OK we really don't know the actual capacity of the truck but we do know this from the Endeavour summary above: 1,600 tpd so 1600tpd x 105gr/t = 168,000gr/day [168 kilos]
so 168,000 x .48 = $80,640/day $564,480/wk [based on 7 day wk] $29,352,960/yr

( based on 1600 tpd that’s - 160 10 tonne truck loads/day - 13/hr on a 12 hr day ) *

I don't think there is much incentive for the truck traffic to decrease soon.
07-20-2015, 08:20 AM,
RE: Mining trucks
So last year we were producing about 1,200tpd with a goal to increase to 1,500tpd by the end of 2014 which we succeeded in. Then with the falling price our goal is to mine 2,200tpd which we are achieving this month for the first time.
Our mill can process about 1,800 tpd so we have to send the rest of it to Bolañitos mine since they have lowered their output. The problem at El Cubo is we don't have the grades to be able to mine higher quality mineral with higher grades, it's just what is in the ground.

The average grade for this month is 209 Silver equivalent, we have some gold in the dirt so this gets times-ed by 60 to work out the equivalent (you need to add the gold grade into your calculations it adds up quickly!).

At the mine itself we use 10t trucks that can go underground, the ones that are moving the dirt to seem to change a lot in capacity, there are 4 big ones lined up out there today, the transport ones my guess are 50-100t depending on which ones we use, they are run by contractors, they say Capricornio on the side (they could be the ones to contact but I can't see them caring too much, they just want to make money, I'm pretty sure I saw some racing through la presa yesterday). We tend to do campaigns so after today there should be a week off while we build up the stocks, I think the plan is to make it more regular so then there would only be like 4 trucks a day but it's Mexico so the plan changes by the minute/hour and I know towards the end of the month we will be sending as much as we possibly can!

El Cubo hasn't done great for years and has been known as a cursed mine according to people I have talked to but over the last year we have increased production significantly, and have found new deposits but with the silver prices struggling it's not an easy task. Think of the trucks as keeping guanajuato alive and more then 1,000 people in the town employed and letting you enjoy the silent peaceful times more?? And let's all hope for a rise in silver prices then Endeavor can upgrade the plant here so we don't have to truck it off :)
07-20-2015, 12:44 PM,
RE: Mining trucks
Great info, Lisa, thank you. We now know where to go for all things mine-related!
You cannot be committed to living here without having a sincere interest in the economic improvement of all residents, and the mining industry makes a sizable contribution. Those 1000 jobs support a great number of families. If the current campaign could get fully implementd to loads moving as you describe it will be a big improvement.
Can the publc tour one of your mines? We did El Nopal, but is is dormant so minimal insight as to current processing and extraction techniques.
07-20-2015, 02:18 PM,
RE: Mining trucks
Yep, I know all about El Cubo as I help and oversee the planning and designing of it, definitely the craziest mine I have worked at where you it can take up to an hour driving underground from one mining area to the other, and there are lots of remnants like railway tracks, carts, altars, shaft equipment leftover from when other companies worked here and they used carts instead of tractors and trucks. We still use some rail underground but is limited to a small area.
Sadly no public tours, we only give them to potential investors really, there is just too much happening underground and it is a hot, sweaty and dirty place to be. Most visits we walk kilometres to visit just a few of the places!! There is a cool tourist one that I have done in Zacatecas which isn't too different to how we still work here, we have modernised a bit but it is a slow going process :)
07-20-2015, 04:16 PM, (This post was last modified: 07-20-2015, 04:25 PM by The Duck.)
RE: Mining trucks
In Zacetecas the mine is called el Eden and definitely worth a visit - a very impressive and enormous place. It even has what is billed as the world's only underground disco/nightclub
One certainly hopes working conditions in the mining industry have improved since colonial times - one of the take-away facts from our recent tour was that 4-5 indigenous workers died per day in el Eden.
No expense spared on the ladders here!

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