Thanks for your responses.
yooy Gparted does not see the drives at this stage. The contacts are clean and I suspect the problem is software related.
My use of cli has been minimal to date but I do need to get into more familiarity with the commands and syntax. Command line experience for me goes back many years before windows and M$ dos but like unused bread, pretty stale.
Puppy 4.2.1 does not appear to support lsusb which I am suprised at but I found a post from Barry mentions such. I may have taken the comment without context but certainly no result in my attempt to use it. I was in root.
Using Usbview the usb drive is seen and details on its Serno etc come up.
Thanks for both comments. Can Gparted be forced to see the flash drives.