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Recirculating Sluice Setup


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My original recirc. setup needed to be replaced, I made it out of a cheap plastic tub (tote) and the stand was PVC pipe, not very adjustable so I wanted to come up with something a little more durable with a stand I could adjust angle a little easier. I did not have much money to spend but being a packrat, have a bunch of stuff (read junk) around, a descent scrap metal pile and a few plastic barrels. After I built my original one, and saw how quickly the water got dirty, I did some more reading and saw people using 3 tubs instead of 2, I had an idea with the barrel and adding a small area that would hold filter material to catch all the large stuff. I guess that almost makes this a 4 compartment model or 3 with a filter.... The water flows over the divider, into a 4" wide compartment that for my initial testing, I am using a couple 6" wide scraps of swamp cooler pad I had after changing my pads. Then it goes under the second divider into the second settling area. There is a 90degree angle pointed up on the (second compartment end) pipe into the 5 gallon bucket where my pump sits, so it is drawing water from about 5" off the bottom. This is what I came up with... I have barely tested it, but one problem I had before was my pump would pump my 5 gallon bucket dry if I ran too fast, so I never could flatten the sluice out and run a little more water through, it took about 30 minutes to feed a 5 gallon bucket of 1/4" classified material through the old recirc setup I had. This new setup, I can run the pump full out and the water level in the bucket does not change... way too much water for a 8" wide sluice... I built this to support my old original home made sluice and also a new 4" cleanup sluice I made, but with future plans for a little large sluice with a power head to go along with it.

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A couple more of it during my first test, I lowered the slope and cranked up the flow and ran a 5 gallon bucket of classified material in about 8 minutes... then I re-ran it again slower and only found one small grain of flour gold. Just as a final double check because I did not have anything to do, I panned the materal by hand and did not find one spec... then I tryed out my new cleanup sluice, my first impresssion is it is probably twice as long as it needs to be... I did not find any gold within a couple inches of the middle of the sluice. This one is ran on a 12v 750 gph bilge pump, I processed a gatorade bottle full of lynx creek black sand in about an hour or so, adding a couple tablespoons every few minutes, again hand panned through afterward and did not find anything.

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Well all depends on the slope, This was a prebent piece I got out of the used pile at the steel yard, the sides are only +1" tall, before adding the rubber matting. The head is a piece of 1" x 1 1/2" square tube I cut a slot in and welded into the bent plate. I think drilling 1/8" holes would have been better or maybe something to change the flow up inside the head?? But with that piece of plastic I used to keep the water in up top, it worked fine, will probably just glue a piece up there, or maybe weld in a piece of sheetmetal and touch it up.... so it looks better. For my first and only use/test, I started with a few tablespoons of black sand I was saving up to try to process with mecury and I had it set for 1" per ft, it seemed to me like the material was moving way too fast, there was a few small black rocks in the black sand and they were shooting down the sluice... I wanted to get all that superfine lynx creek gold out... I would guess this was about 3/8" of water, because little 1/4" rocks were flowing down under the surface. Since I did not have a valve for this size tubing, I just lowered the sluice as low as I could go, the slightest additional lowering I did beyond this, water overflowed the sides, so at that point it was at least 5/8" of waterI set it there and fed in close to a gatorade bottle of black sands I had just hand panned from lynx creek. There was a little blonde sand and quite a few small rocks still, as this was just get it to fines and dump in a bucket to pan as much material as I could. At this low slope, I did pick out some of the larger rocks, but close to 1/4"ers still made their way down on their own with a few stops along the way... I put in a couple tablespoons every 4 to 5 minutes I would guess.

The cleanup sort of told me I was being way to conservative I guess, and will probably try it at 1" per foot and hand pan the black sand afterwards to check for what I missed one more time.... When I went to clean it up, I put the bottom into a 5 gallon bucket and leaned it to about a 45degree angle, took my hose and started gently rinsing it down, I did not want to blast the gold out of the sluice onto the ground. After that I had two pans with nearly equal amounts of black sand, one was what came out on it's own, the other was my cleanup, but when I looked back in the sluice, I could still see alot of specs of gold down in the rubber mat. It was really fine stuff and no way I could pick it all out... I stood the sluice up in the bucket again, almost straight up, but leaned it so it would flow to the side first, turned the hose back on and with my thumb over the end of the hose, sprayed it to the low side then down aways, did this all the way down it, about 1/2" at a time, this time I had a little bit of black sand and a few tenths of a gram of fine gold in the pan... I hand panned through the other pans the old fashioned way as a double check, the cleanup pan I found one small spec of gold, no visible flour gold at all. This was larger than flour and I like to find ALL the gold, but definitely not worth the time panning half a quart of black sand... The other pan had nothing whatsoever.

nice set up :whoope:

I'd like to do something similar for a clean up station @ the mine.

how deep is the water in your sluice w/ that 750 pump?

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