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THE GEOLOGY OF

MALAYAN ORE-DEPOSITS
BY

J. B. SCRIVEN OR, M.A. (OXON.), F.G.S.


OI~OLOO1.ST TO 'J' 8 ,8 l<'EDEnATED MALA y S'I'AT F,8 OQVI.;RNMF;NT
AND l"ORl\I RIU,V O f<' 11.~f. GEO LOOi CAL SU iWEY OF TilE UNIT F:D K I NGDOM

MACMILL AN AND CO., LIM 1TED


ST. MARTIN'S STREET, LON DON
19 28
CONr:rE NTS
1)AQ1~

IN'£RODUCTION ix

CHAPTER I
GENERAL GEOLOGICAL SKETCH AND DISTRIBUTION OF ORE-DEPOSITS 1

CHAPTER II
GOLD _ G

CHAPTER III
CASSITERITE 24

CHAPTER IV
THE WESTERN TIN-BELT 34

CHAPTER V
THE EASTERN TIN-BELT 116

CHAPTER VI
TUNGSTEN AND OTHER ORES. 130

CHAPTER VII
THE NON-DETRITAL DEPOSITS 47

CHAPTER VIII
THE DETRITAL DEPOSITS 185

CHAPTER IX
BIBLIOGRAPHY • . 200
(References to the Bibliography are made thus: B. 70, p. 62 .)

I NDEX 207

v
LI ST OF PLATES
View of Kinta from Lahat P'rontispiece
l·I~A TE

I. Table <;>f Non-detrital Deposits with Seleot ed E xamples .. } At end


II. Geologioal Map of the Kinta Distriot with part of Batang Padang oj
III. Map of Malaya showing Ooo urrenoes of Tin and Gold . . ,;olume

LI ST OF TEXT-FIGURE S
PAOP.
1. Map showing t he" Coulisses " of th e Malay Peninsula and part of t he
Malay Arohipelago . 2
2. The R aub Lodes . 16
3. View of R aub from Bukit K oman 17
4. Gold-bearing Vein following a Fold, Bukit K oman 18
5. Small Gold-bearing Quartz-veins in Caloareous Shale, Bukit Kom an 19
6. Cassiterite from Sungei Gau . 25
7. Cassiterite from Bundi . 26
8. Cassit erite from Tanjong Toalang 27
9. The Rahman H ydraulio Tin Mines Stookwork of Tin-veins . 39
m ~

11. Tin-mine in Ulu Sungei Temengor, Upper P erak 45


12. Flow of Soft Granite, Menglembu, Kinta . 51
13. A Fold in Limest one, Yau Yok Choo's Mine, Ampang, Kinta 52
14. View of Mining Land from Redhills, Kinta 53
15. Gunong Tempurong, Kinta 55
16. View from Gopeng t owards the Kledang Range 55
17. A Kaolin-vein at Kramat Pulai 60
18. Angular Tin-ore from Gopeng 65
19. Pegmatite Vein, Gopeng 66
20. 66
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Vlll THE GEOLOGY OF MALAYAN ORE-DEPOSITS
llAGE

21. Contact of a Kaolin-vein with Limestone, Gopeng 67


22. Monitors cutting High.level Alluvium, Gopeng . 68
23. 'l'in·ore from the J ehoshaphat Mine 73
24. General View of the Tanjong Toalang Chinese Tin.Mining Company's
Mine 76
25. Contact of Granite and Schists, Tanjong Toalang 77
26. Tourmaline-aplite, Tanjong Toalang 78
27. Vertical Section of the Tronoh Tin Mines Company's Mine . 80
28. Alluvium with Lignite, Siputeh 82
29. Vertical Section showing Clay on an Irregular Limestone Bottom,
Siputeh . 83
30. Boulder.clay, Redhills, Kinta. 85
31. The Lahat Ltd. South Mine 87
32. Tin·ore in Granite, Menglembu, Kinta 89
33. Tin-ore of Two Ages, Menglembu, Kinta . 90
3.4. Vertical Sections of the Lahat Pipe 92
35. Chasm in Limestone, Telok Kruin Pipes Ltd. 94
36. The Bruseh Stockwork . 98
37. Geological Map of part of Selangor 101
38. Geological Map of part of the Bundi Mine, Trengganu 121
39. Vertical Section of part of the Bundi Mine, Trengganu 121
40. Map of th e P ahang Consolidat ed Lodes 123
41. Map of the Kramat Pulai Scheelite Mine . 133
42. The Machang Sat ahun Manganese Deposit, Trengganu 139
43. Native Copper in a Tin-ore Concentrate, Rotan Daha n 14()
44. Vertical Section of Veins on Gunong Bakau 158
45. Quartz-topaz Veins, Gunong Bakau 15ll
46. Table of Selected Tin and Tungsten-Deposits 175
47 . Table of Detrital Deposits with Select ed Examples 19()

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INTRODUOTION
" MALAYA" is the portion of the Malay Peninsula that is
under British control, and includes the Straits Settlements,
which are .a Crown Colony, with the Federated Malay States
and Unfederated Malay States under British protection. The
Straits Settlements in the Peninsula are the islands Penang
and Singapore, with Province Wellesley, the Dindings, and
Malacca on the mainland. The Federated Malay States are
Perak, Selangor, Negri Sembilan, and Pahang: the Un-
federated Malay States are Johore, Kedah, Pedis, Kelantan,
and Trengganu.
When Malaya first became a producer of gold and tin
will, probably, never be known. References, by Arab writers,
to a port" Kilah " on the west coast of the Peninsula, which
may be Kedah, show that in the ninth century (A.D.) it was
famous for tin and bamboo. Old gold workings in Pahang
may have been operated by the Mon race before the Siamese
encroached on the northern part of the Peninsula in the
thirteenth century. When the Portuguese took Malacca in
1511 gold and tin were certainly being produced. Barbosa,
who was the earliest Portuguese writer on Malacca (1518),
and Godinho de Eredia (1600) both refer to gold. D'Albu-
querque, the Portuguese leader in 1511, suppressed the Malay
tin coinage in Malacca, and substituted a Portuguese tin
coinage. Barbosa wrote of "much and good tin " won III
Selangor and taken to Malacca.
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x THE GEOLOGY OF MALAYAN ORE-DEPOSITS

Malaya is now famous as the chief source in the world of


tin and rubber, but, although in the days when the Portu-
guese rule dominated the country gold was mentioned as an
important mineral product, it has now waned in the public
eye to such an extent that few realize that Malaya is still a
gold-producing country. Minerals other than gold and tin
occur in Malaya, the best known being tungsten, and this
volume is an attempt to give a connected account of the
geology of the deposits in which they all occur.
To describe in detail every mineral deposit that has been
examined would entail much wearisome repetition. I have,
therefore, selected certain examples which appear to me to be
important as types or as having individual peculiarities, the
Sungei Gau tin-deposit being one of the latter. Some of the
mines, for example Sungei Gau, are not working now, but are
included because they afforded valuable geological informa-
tion when open.
Nearly all the localities mentioned in this volume have
Malay names. The romanized version of them adopted here
is perhaps in some cases not the best in the eyes of a
Malay scholar, but it corresponds with the names in the
maps published by the Survey Department, Federated
Malay States, on which the maps ,in this volume are
based. Agreement between the text and maps is more
important than meticulous accuracy in transliteration.
A bibliography of previous literature is given at the end
of t,lle book (Chapter IX.). This may not be complete, but
includes, I think, all important literature, scientific and
historical, bearing on the subject. As I wish to avoid con-
troversial subjects as much as possible, I trust I shall not be
thought discourteous if I do no more than mention certain
publications of recent date.
The scheme adopted in this book is to describe the occur-

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INTRODUCTION Xl

rences of gold, tin, tungsten, and other minerals in Chapters


IV. to VI., and to discuss their classification and origin
briefly in Chapters VII. and VIII. Petrological and minera-
logical detail are avoided as much as possible, and refe"rences '
in the text are reduced to a minimum. The reader is credited
with an elementary knowledge of economic geology, and it
is hoped he will reciprocate by crediting the author with
a knowledge of the literature without burdening the text
with numerous quotations from authorities. I have en-
deavoured to avoid accentuating my own views on some
interesting points concerning the geology of Kinta, one reason
for this being that, whatever anyone's opinions may be, it is
far better now, in view of the sharply conflicting views already
expressed, to take Dr. R. H. Rastall's conclusions as a basis
for future work and to see how far they are supported by
fresh evidence. My own views on the geology of Kinta have
undergone some change since the earlier publications appeared.
New evidence made the change necessary and may do so
again in the future. One theory gained some notoriety, that
of the glacial origin of deposits in Kinta believed to be older
than the Mesozoic granite. As far as the beds at Gopeng
and their extension to the north on the east side of the Kinta
District. are concerned, this glacial theory is abandoned,
although the beds in question are not typical alluvium,
but concerning the " Western Boulder-Clays " I am still in
doubt.
The information contained in these pages is mostly the
. result of personal observation since 1903, but in some cases
I am indebted to the staff of the .Geological Department,
Federated Malay States, for information about localities that
I have not visited, or visited a long time ago. I also wish to
express my thanks for the assistance I have always received
at the hands of the mining community, European and
Xli THE GEOLOGY OF MALAYAN ORE-DEPOSITS
Asiatic, without which much of my work would have been
impossible.
The illustrations, with the exception of a few duly acknow-
ledged in the text, are from my own or the Departmental
collections.
The question of the future of the mining industry in
Malaya has attracted more interest than usual recently on
account of certain utterances as to the duration of the life
of the tin-fields. Strictly speaking we are only concerned
here with the geological side of the question; are there more
deposits of tin-ore, gold, or any other marketable mineral?
It is nevertheless impossible to dissociate working costs from
geological considerations. For instance, under the limestone
of the Kinta tin-field there probably are large quantities of
tin-ore at the junction of the granite with the superincumbent
rocks, and near that junction on either side, but so deep down
that working them at a profit would be impossible. However,
we may consider here what chances there are of finding new
tin-fields in Malaya, and what developments may be expected
in the existing fields.
In 1901 a Commission appointed to report on mining
matters expressed its fears as to the coming exhaustion of
the richer tin-deposits. Those fears have not been realized
except in one or two cases such as Selama: on the other hand,
since that date new fields have been found, namely, Gambang
and Blat in Pahang, Mersing in J ohore, Endau and Pontian
on the borders of J ohore and Pahang, valleys in the Main
Range near Bentong, and Gunong Bakau. But it must be
confessed that the prospect of finding still more tin-fields is
not bright. The areas that hold out most hope are the
granite range separating Trengganu from Kelantan, the
difficult, swampy country between the Pahang and Rompin
Rivers, and the Main Range north of Selangor.
INTRODUCTION XIII

In the Malay Archipelago stanniferous " drowned valleys",


old valleys of " Sunda-Iand " that are still partly submerged,
are worked in the sea. In the Peninsula no such tin-deposits
are known as yet, those on the coast of Malacca and the .
Dindings being of a different class, but in existing tin-fields
the extension of dredging operations over areas of alluvium,
particularly between Tanjong Toalang and the sea, is
expected. The Kinta, the Kampar, and the Chenderiang
Rivers must carry fine cassiterite far out into this wide flat
country, and its recovery is a matter of working costs.
Between Bruas and the Dindings again is likely ground for
prospecting.
In the existing tin-fields future supplies depend on careful
prospecting and the lowering of working costs. Proposals
have been made that deep drilling should be taken in hand
in the hope of finding ore, but anything in the nature of
haphazard work, by which is meant drilling throug~ rock
where there are no indications of minerals, is not to be
recommended. Following a pipe in limestone down to the
granite would be more likely to repay the cost and might
more than cover it.
There are two new forms of prospecting that have come
to the fore lately in other countries, prospecting by means of
an E6tv6s Torsion Balance, and electrical prospecting. The
former method, which is based on differences of specific
gravity in the earth's crust, has proved valuable in locating
massive bodies of ore, such as metallic sulphides, and reservoirs
of oil; but whether it would have any advantage over boring
or shafting in Malaya is open to question. It entails long
and complicated calculations, is costly, tedious, and requires
specially trained operators, while in the end excavations
have to be made to prove the presence of the ore and exploit
it. Electrical prospecting, on the other hand, depending on