• Lode Resources up +150% on an outstanding silver drill hit –116.1m at 1003g/t silver equivalent from 90m — at the historic Webbs Consol project
  • A drilling program at Meteoric’s Caldeira REE project is about to kick off, ahead of a maiden resource  in the June quarter
  • Up on no news: Golden State Mining, Volt Resources

Here are the biggest small cap resources winners in early trade, Wednesday February 1.



LDR surged +150% on an outstanding silver drill hit – 116.1m at 1003g/t silver equivalent from 90m, including 3.1m at 3325g/t silver from 201m – at the historic Webbs Consol project in NSW.

That’s not true width but still very thick, very high grade, and not too deep, three basic criteria punters should look at when evaluating drill results.

LDR also uses silver equivalent numbers for simplicity, but the actual intercept contains lead, zinc, copper, and gold.

This hit from the so-called Tangoa West lode – one of six at the project — represents the highest endowment of all drill intercepts received to date, the company says.

It also doubles Tangoa West mineralisation to a depth of 200m vertically “and the lode width appears to increase with depth”.

Multiple follow-up drill holes have been designed to test Tangoa West up to a depth of 450m vertically, in addition to depth testing other lodes discovered by earlier drilling.

This drilling will kick off “imminently”.

“The exceptionally rich WCS045 drill intercept demonstrates strong vertical continuity of the Tangoa West Lode mineralisation and rapidly increasing mineral endowment with depth,” LDR managing director Ted Leschke says.

“This has depth potential implications for all six lodes discovered to date as well as the overall prospectivity and potential scale of Webbs Consol silver project.”

The tightly held $15m capped stock listed mid-2021 with three main projects – Uralla (gold), Fender (base metals) and Webbs Consol (silver, zinc) — in the underexplored New England Fold Belt of NSW, north of the better-known Lachlan Fold.

Webb Consol is now the clear focus, with 97% of spending in the December half funnelled towards the project. The explorer had ~$2m left in the bank at the end of December.



(Up on no news)

GSM’s greenfields Yule gold-lithium project in the Pilbara is right in the thick of the action.

In 2020, De Grey’s (ASX:DEG) Hemi gold discovery prompted neighbouring explorers like GSM – just 15km away — to fast-track big drilling programs of their own.

The share price peaked at 52c on nearology fervour – a heady 900% increase on current levels.

But GSM’s recent exploration efforts at Yule have focused on lithium, with its latest campaign uncovering some targets based on the presence of LCT pegmatite pathfinders.

GSM’s increasing confidence in its lithium potential at Yule led it to dub the target area ‘Nomad’.

Further AC and RC drilling at Nomad is currently being planned and is awaiting statutory approvals. Drilling is expected to commence early Q2 2023.

The explorer also has the recently acquired Payne’s Find lithium project in the Murchison, where a drilling program is scheduled for Q2, 2023.

The $7m capped minnow had $2.5m in the bank at the end of December.

READ: Late on lithium? Here are some explorers with big battery dreams



This exploration chameleon has a history of acquiring projects linked with a hot commodity.

First, it was cobalt in 2017, when the price hit record highs. Then, it was gold in 2019, also when prices were hitting record highs.

But nothing compares to the share price spike MEI has enjoyed — 800% and counting — since announcing plans to buy the Caldeira ionic clay rare earths project in Brazil late last year.

Ionic clays are as hot as you can get in 2022-2023.

And to be fair, MEI isn’t just chasing the next hot thing.

For starters, it was able to sell its Brazilian gold projects for ~US$20m, which funds Caldeira’s $US20m acquisition and subsequent exploration costs.

The purchase price also potentially speaks to its quality, with Barry Fitz saying “the previously privately-owned Caldeira does seem to have something special about it”.

A drilling program at Caldeira is about to kick off and MEI expects to announce a maiden resource estimate in the June quarter.

With $US17.5m still owing from the gold project sale, $220m capped MEI had ~$3m in the bank at the end of December.



RIE continues to hit good grades at Tintic, part of the historic Kingman gold project in the US.

The newest batch of assays include a highlight 0.24m @ 130g/t gold, 732g/t silver & 28% lead within a broader 0.76m @ 52.8g/t gold and 261g/t silver.

The hits extend the “blanket of high-grade gold, silver and lead” at Tintic to 600m long, and counting.

Anything shallow and flat lying could be cheaper and easier to mine.

“These assay results clearly demonstrate the exceptional grade potential at Tintic,” REI chairman Michael Bohm says.

“Gold, silver, and lead mineralisation continues to be reported at high grade in numerous holes and from shallow depths.

“The recent assay results also suggest opportunity for further extensions to the Tintic mineralisation.”

The remaining drill assay results are anticipated this month, the company says.

The $16m capped stock had $1.4m in the bank at the end of December.



(Up on no news)

Poor VRC. The company owns a controlling stake in the Zavilievsky graphite mine in Ukraine, where operations restarted in August before shutting down again, because war. And winter.

“Over an initial 2-week period of production, 846 tonnes were produced, for an average of 60.5 tonnes of graphite product per day,” VRC says in its latest quarterly.

“In November 2022, energy supply disruptions commenced due to Russian missile attacks on power generation facilities affecting the entire Ukraine energy grid.

“Combined with the continuation of supply disruptions, this has resulted in ZG management being unable to recommence production prior to the Ukraine winter.

“Volt and ZG management continue to monitor the situation, address the issues, and define the best way forward.”

Without twisting the dagger, I would humbly point out that we called shenanigans back in November 2021.


Luckily, the stock has other strings to its bow, including an MoU with 24M Technologies, providing a pathway to supply coated spheronised purified graphite – which attracts a far higher price — to big companies like Volkswagen.

Its Bunyu project in Tanzania is also one of the world’s biggest undeveloped greenfield natural graphite projects.

READ: We asked 11 ASX graphite stocks why you should invest in them. 11! Here’s what they said.