Consolidated Tin Mines is ramping up its exploration and mining activities in the Mount Garnet and Einasleigh areas.
The company restarted production at its Mount Garnet zinc mine mid-year and aims to bring the Dry River South base metals project back online next month, according to managing director Ralph De Lacey.
It has also stepped up its drilling program, with four rigs working across projects in the Mount Garnet and Einasleigh areas this week.
The activity comes after Consolidated Tin Mines emerged from a five-month period of administration late last year.
Mr De Lacey believes the outlook for the next year is good, with the company working to cash in on buoyant metal prices.
Mining resumed at Mount Garnet in June and the processing plant has been operating since July, processing about 25,000 tonnes of ore each month.
The operation supports a workforce of 114, and Consolidated Tin recently purchased the disused Mount Garnet Hotel to help accommodate employees.
The Surveyor mine area, 150km south of Mount Garnet, is also expected to be part of Consolidated Tin’s ramp-up.
“Since we came out of administration we have been working to bring the Dry River South project (at Surveyor) into production,” Mr De Lacey said.
“Currently our expectation is that we will have ore coming from Dry River South early November for processing at Mount Garnet.”
Mr De Lacey said the big ‘pipeline project’ for the company currently was at Einasleigh, where three rigs are at work.
“The main projects there are the Chloe group and Kaiser Bill,” he said.
“They are two separate projects about 15km apart, within the Chloe project there are several areas of mineralisation with different names.”
Consolidated Tin Mines is also further investigating a prospect adjacent to Mount Garnet mine that was identified by previous owner Kagara – the Mount Garnet Deeps project.
“We have drilled that prospect and we’re at the point where we are looking to go ahead mining that,” Mr De Lacey said.
“We are focused on about 400,000 tonnes of ore, that is the top part of it, the mineralisation extends below that.”
Mr De Lacey said the company had also started a drilling program at the old Balcooma mine within the Surveyor area.
“We are of the view there is additional ore in the Balcooma underground that has not been mined out – a bit like the Mount Garnet Deeps alongside the Mount Garnet underground,” he said.
Consolidated Tin’s core Gillian tin project is still humming away in the background as it places its immediate focus on feeding the mill at Mount Garnet.
“The long-term goal is the tin and we certainly will come back to that,” Mr De Lacey said.
“When we have the Mount Garnet mine and Dry River South feeding the plant and that has settled down, probably early next year, we will revisit the tin project and start to progress that.
“We almost finished the definitive feasibility study, so we will revisit that. There’s some metallurgy work to be done.
“There’s a clear program we have laid out – we just need the time and the funds to be able to do that.”