PROGRESS OF HEADFRAME DEMOLITION

These photos, snapped Thursday, 16 June 2022, show that Greenstone Gold Mines is in no hurry to complete the job of demolishing the MacLeod-Cockshutt No. 1 headframe.

View from the Discovery Centre.

For photo #1, I ignored the No Trespassing sign and stood beside the Geraldton Discovery Centre. It is no longer a museum. Three pickups parked outside suggest it is now an office or work room.

In the second photo, the housing for the sheave wheels has been dismounted from the frame and now sits on the ground. Apparently, the sheave wheels were removed some years ago. If you go the old Magnet mine, you can see from the highway, north side, a headframe with two sheave wheels mounted on top. Magnet mine was renamed Roxmark mine years ago, and is now part of the property of Greenstone Gold Mines. The old Magnet mine is located just under 9 km west of the MacLeod-Cockshutt headframe now in process of being demolished.

The “cabin” with the red roof is the housing for the sheave wheels.

Here is a description of a non-specific headframe or headgear: Mining Headgears – Pure Functionality Ruling over Beauty | The Heritage Portal

“The primary purpose of a Headgear [headframe] is to support the sheave wheels, on which the winding ropes [cables] run. The ropes are coiled (stored) on ground[-]mounted drum winders [hoist drums], situated in the winder house [hoist room], at a distance away from the Headgear. The ropes leave the winder house at approximately 40 degrees to the horizontal and go over the sheave wheels, mounted up in the headgear, they then change direction and go downwards into the shaft. At the free ends of the ropes are attached the conveyances (man/material cages or skips). It is worthwhile to note that it is usual to counterbalance the conveyances, i.e. when one is at the bottom of the shaft the other is at the top; this is done in order to reduce the power output required by the electrically driven winders.”

I have a proposal: form a group to investigate preserving the old Magnet mine headframe. We failed to save the M-C No. 1, but the old Magnet mine is still structural evidence that the Little Long Lac Gold Area once had 13 operating mines. Maybe call the group Friends of the Old Magnet Mine.

There is still at least one old mine in the Greenstone region that has the ruins of a headframe (shaft house) and cages. It is a remote site and I have not personally visited it, but I’ve seen the pictures. One day, God willing, I shall pay the site a visit.

View looking southeast.

2 thoughts on “PROGRESS OF HEADFRAME DEMOLITION

  1. The headframe at the old Magnet mine is not a Magnet Mine headframe. This was erected by Roxmark back about 1980 when they pumped out the old shaft so they could investigate a possibility of reopening the mine. In speaking to a worker from that time I was told they did find some gold but not enough to consider mining it. You may recall they had a worker injured from a methane explosion when he lit a cigarette while renewing the top of a raise on surface. Methane is something the Equinox Mine will have to be concerned about when they hit the old workings of the MacLeod Mine. I remember there being diamond drill holes underground that leaked methane constantly. This will have been accumulating in the dead end drifts and raises for many years now.

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