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Kovoc
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[*] posted on 8-8-2019 at 15:45
Radioactive Minerals


Can someone tell me where I could find radioactive rocks and what they look like? I'm not sure to tell which ones could possibly be radioactive and which ones are just rocks (I don't have a Geiger counter)
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diddi
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[*] posted on 8-8-2019 at 17:45


check mindat.org for minerals in your area. also you so need a geiger. i bought a custom designed alpha / beta / gamma setup for under $100 and it is really good. if you can find a friend in US the can post you rocks from United Nuclear.
the rocks look no different from other rocks. unless you are pretty skilled, you will have difficulty in ID them in the field. many are just fine coloured powders on matrix.




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Herr Haber
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[*] posted on 9-8-2019 at 00:34


Quote: Originally posted by diddi  
i bought a custom designed alpha / beta / gamma setup for under $100 and it is really good.


I'd be very interested in more details as I am looking to buy one.




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[*] posted on 9-8-2019 at 01:38


I have heard of someone scouting for uranium ore in the dark armed with a bottle of nitric acid. After reacting with the acid the uranium compounds glow. Details are on the board here somewhere.



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Ubya
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[*] posted on 9-8-2019 at 03:41


Quote: Originally posted by j_sum1  
I have heard of someone scouting for uranium ore in the dark armed with a bottle of nitric acid. After reacting with the acid the uranium compounds glow. Details are on the board here somewhere.

glow under uv light





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Herr Haber
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[*] posted on 9-8-2019 at 04:08


There are a lot of things underground that stand out with UV light :)



The spirit of adventure was upon me. Having nitric acid and copper, I had only to learn what the words 'act upon' meant. - Ira Remsen
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[*] posted on 9-8-2019 at 04:29


Quote: Originally posted by Ubya  
Quote: Originally posted by j_sum1  
I have heard of someone scouting for uranium ore in the dark armed with a bottle of nitric acid. After reacting with the acid the uranium compounds glow. Details are on the board here somewhere.

glow under uv light


Oh yeah. Left out that detail.




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Ubya
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[*] posted on 9-8-2019 at 14:34


Quote: Originally posted by Herr Haber  
There are a lot of things underground that stand out with UV light :)


you are right, but uranium 6+ has a characteristic color, that nice green/Yellow that not many minerals have





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violet sin
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[*] posted on 29-5-2020 at 22:52


-diddi, under 100$ for all three measurements? sounds *far better that what I've see searching lately. Lingering in the high 300$ to low 400$ range. Also seemed like the wording could be problematic if you don't know enough. A couple poorly thought out purchases could hamper real progress.

Just started with this side of rock collecting. Absorbing information, while trying to weed out misconceptions. Wishful thinking can be directly fought with a measuring device. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

There are a few samples I've found deer hunting, probably nothing. I was hoping for heavy metals, never thought about radioactive minerals though. I've found quartz with pyrite, dark oxides, some green crystals, but northern California isn't known for direct ore body from my reading, though placers and grains could be concentrated downstream from some rock types. the green I was thinking adventurine probably, and not radioactive. Probably nothing at all, but a couple hours south are know minerals on mindat.org https://www.mindat.org/minlocsearch.php?frm_id=mls&cform...

That's within planned trip range. <100$ sounds unbeatable for a meter... Tell me more. I'd love to build something one day. Till then, plenty of reading to do.
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Ubya
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[*] posted on 30-5-2020 at 08:43


i bought my Geiger counter on Ebay for 60$ (https://www.ebay.com/itm/NetIO-Geiger-Counter-Embedded-Modul...)
it can read beta and gamma, but doesn't have an housing, so i had in mind to ask a friend to 3d print one for me (thingiverse has a case for this model), but i've not been able to do so.
in the end what i did was to upgrade this counter for 10$ total i think. i added a 5000mAh powerbank as the main battery instead of using AAA batteries, i added a micro USB cable extension/panel adapter so i could charge the powerbank from outside the case, i soldered wires and buttons to go on the case, and i bought some BNC connectors and a BNC cable so i could build a probe for the geiger tube. the case is just an electrical box.

it is based on arduino so it can be connected to a pc via USB-TTL, and via serial commands you can tweak a few things(like the voltage to the probe)

20200530_181110-1.jpg - 2.8MB

20200530_181251.jpg - 1.7MB



i'm trying to find a cheap mica pancake tube so i can see some alpha :)





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violet sin
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[*] posted on 4-6-2020 at 02:55


Nice job customizing it, was wondering how well that kit worked out. Have you tried it on any samples or done prospecting with it? An around the lab/house safety sniffer seems like it's a first priority maybe. How ya like it so far?

I see some vintage equipment for not too much. Looks like a decent way to get an enclosure and external probe ... But I've no idea yet what tubes are good for what circumstances, not to mention some of it is OLD. Some looked to have a check source built in for calibration...

The newer 200$ variety seem to have some basic graphical representations and a short memory which is kinda impressive from the short vid I saw.

350$ and up starts looking like real equipment.

This hobby, learning as they call it, is damn expensive. I was quite impressed with the equipment I saw on neptunium's vid at the end of the radioisotope identification thread. That was a great video with a lot of fun science and I found it very enjoyable.

Here are a couple of the rocks I found. To me looks like quartz with calcite and possibly some barite dispersed around interesting(to me) dark flecks and pyrite like minerals. It was on a slide side of a peak neat a fire look out. Couldn't pass them by ...

IMAG7625.jpg - 755kB IMAG7634.jpg - 1.1MB

IMAG7630.jpg - 780kB IMAG7629.jpg - 1MB IMAG7638.jpg - 1000kB

Plenty of rust bleeding veins of quartz, some pyrite and lots of rock to pour your eyes on. I don't expect them to be anything fantastic, but the little mineralization seemed like a good target for a chem project some day, probably boring, but finding out won't be so, win.
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[*] posted on 4-6-2020 at 07:28


i'm pretty happy with it.
i tested it against a few sources, i have an autunite sample, a few tungsten-ThO2 electrodes, 2 americium-241 sources, 5g of uranyl acetate, a tritium vial (can't detect anything from tge vial).

i went prospecting a bit, but italy is not famous for its uranium giaciments, at the moment i could just test a few volcanic rocks, and i could get a few big piles where the background radiation got to 1microsievert/h.

the only thing i don't like about it it's the time needee to get a reading, it doesn't extrapolate the CPM from a few counts, to get the real value you have to wait one minute each time.






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[*] posted on 28-8-2020 at 18:34


I snagged a cheap detector, and it came a day early. There are probably better units, I did little reading, but it works and <100$. I can't 3D print casings and have very little spare time. Thanks for sharing though Ubya.

Detecting immediately my purchased samples, welding electrodes 4% Thoriated and then the rocks I've found ... Nada on the latter which, seems 100% fitting, but still disappointing. I checked a Vaseline pony statue of about 7" tall and it was underwhelmingly above background. The thorium welding rod 10pack wasn't great... But this little orange vase that's been sitting on our mantle was hot by comparison.

IMG_20200828_182833007.jpg - 2.4MB IMG_20200828_183019821.jpg - 2.3MB

The vase topped out around 650cpm with the detector on top of it. What a surprise, we'd no idea, it's now in another ventilated room only accessable from outside...

VID_20200828_183436110_exported_92322_1598666909671.jpg - 192kB

The Tyuyamunite was ok, but the thorianite sample however was HOT topping out ~4150cpm for 7 small pieces!

So it begins, time to check the shale banks around or ranch. Maybe some stream bed near granite, also not far. Eventually a geo minded trip to known sources in California. Of course, plenty to learn still.
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[*] posted on 28-8-2020 at 23:48


Quote: Originally posted by Kovoc  
Can someone tell me where I could find radioactive rocks and what they look like? I'm not sure to tell which ones could possibly be radioactive and which ones are just rocks (I don't have a Geiger counter)

Without a Geiger counter or similar,
. there is not much point in colecting radioactive rocks,
. finding radioactive rocks will be more difficult.

Radioactivity sounds interesting,
but unless you have an application for it,
you will soon wonder why you started.
Buying, shipping and storage are worse than for 'chemicals'




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[*] posted on 29-8-2020 at 07:28


I can recommend this ebay seller for geiger counters. For about $50 I got his arduino geiger counter kit with an SBM-20 tube a year ago and it's been working fine! I'm not affiliated, just a happy customer.

I've upgraded the tube to an SBT-10a tube which can detect alpha particles too (SBM-20 can't). You also need a handful of 15 megaohms resistors for this.

The SBT-10a was only $50 (vintage surplus from russia or ukraine I believe) which is pretty cheap as far as alpha probes go. It has a huge sensitive area and a mica window.

I have not gone mineral hunting with yet, but I think it will work really well.
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violet sin
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[*] posted on 29-8-2020 at 20:31



Let it sit and get a nice long reading on potash fertilizer from a garden store, on exposed 4%thoriated rod, and just sitting for background reading. B/c I just didn't actually wait to observe yesterday. Too much to excitement, not enough play time.

Potash 28-33 cpm often with deviation both ways
Exposed TIG for was as pictured mid 500's cpm.
Background was 11-15 cpm

IMG_20200829_160620182.jpg - 2.5MB IMG_20200829_110001210.jpg - 2.6MB IMG_20200829_111335659.jpg - 2.5MB

It does some graph views to so that's nice, the full manual had to be downloaded. It only came with a bare bones start up instructions. The battery is lasting forever so it barely dinged it after hours of use.

I'd say the detector was worth finding a vase in our living room to be wary of. Everything else is bonus at this point. I've no plans to stockpile or extract, but a couple samples bought and a couple found would be nice.

Owning any samples should mean owning a cheap detector. They're not bad cost wise, for the peace of mind they offer.
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[*] posted on 19-10-2020 at 19:28


Ordered some cheap tubes from LND in newyork, the 713(b,g), 712(a,b,g).

"The 712 is the cheapest mica window alpha detector we make", to quote bill in sales. There is no paper catalog, only online, and you have to inquire for price, no pdf or spreadsheet etc.

IMG_20201019_180345247.jpg - 2.9MB IMG_20201019_180304379.jpg - 2.8MB

They are pretty small which is nice for addition to my current device. 48$ / 60$ respectively, and they had a 100$ min order so it worked out good. 10 days to ship out after order, I'm happy with them for sure. They run suggested @500v as opposed to the M4011 tube in it now @380v. So it's not 100% plug and play, but worth the effort.

I'll have alpha sensing capabilities after a good build. Someone has already installed a 712 on the GQ forum. they are used in several wands Ive seen for sale online. I don't think the 713 was used there, but it's small enough it could piggyback easily enough.

Getting to learn along the way is fun.
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[*] posted on 26-10-2020 at 00:56


Granite is easily available and is radioactive
Otherwise, you can try to get some smoke detectors. They contain americium in them.
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