Mako Mining (TSXV: MKO; US-OTC: MAKOF) says its San Albino gold project in northern Nicaragua may reach commercial production at the end of the second quarter.
The 5000-tonne per day gravity and carbon-in-leach plant is fully operational and operating above 75% nameplate capacity. If the plant continues to operate at this level or above, Mako says, commercial production could be declared as soon as July 1.
The plant has been treating mineralized material averaging 16.5 grams gold per tonne since mid-May.
The facility had minor start-up issues in both circuits — getting cyanide concentrations up to the required levels in the cyanidation reactor and a shortage of filter press cloths — but they were resolved in early May.
To make up for the delay in plant start-up, Mako intends to process only high-grade vein material until the end of June.
The open-pit mine is averaging 982 tonnes of mineralized material daily. A 105,856-tonne stockpile includes 17,596 tonnes of diluted vein material grading 15.37 grams gold per tonne and 88,260 tonnes of historical dump material at 2.47 grams gold per tonne for total contained gold of 16,676 ounces.
Mining in the Porcelana zone is to begin early in the third quarter 2021. This zone has the high grade and thickness profile encountered at the mine.
A resource for the pit completed in November 2020 estimated fully diluted measured and indicated resources of 310,900 tonnes grading 9.54 grams gold per tonne, containing 95,400 ounces. The fully diluted inferred resource is 226,700 tonnes grading 8.50 grams gold per tonne, containing 62,000 oz. of gold.
The estimate for potential underground mining includes measured and indicated material of 230,600 tonnes averaging 11.22 grams gold, containing 83,200 ounces. The inferred portion is 116,100 tonnes at 8.42 grams gold, containing 51,200 ounces.
The historical dumps are classified as inferred having 78,800 tonnes at 2.95 grams gold, containing 7,500 ounces.