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I bought a trommel. Good idea?


Crab_Cake

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Yo Crabcake, I don't want to rain on your parade, but with the kind of water flow shown in that video you can get a home made sluice box and process much more material with at least equal recovery for under $100 ... We all make mistakes while we're learning this hobby ... That trommel is not very well made from the looks of the material used ... It appears it wouldn't last one week of hard use... Just my opinion from hard learned experience ... Cheers, Unc

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Crab Cake,

I like it! It might be overly engineered, but for the experience....looks like fun! I hope the trommel lasts a long time but if not give one of the other ideas a try.

You can't argue with gold in the pan!

Paul (who has build some amazingly complicated contraptions in his day)

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I think trommels are generally good at cleaning clay off of rocks, as well as sorting out the big rocks in a systematic fashion (or something like that). However, the screen material on that model is what scares me, I don't think that could handle any big rocks or at least not a steady feed of them. Probably have to throw those out by hand. I've been kind of eyeing this one on eBay, guy says he will produce one for around $1000 even, minus the two sluices if you have your own:

http://www.ebay.com/...#ht_1055wt_1189

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Well, that one looks much better built, but I can't see any means of driving it ... Is it electric or gas powered? If it includes something to drive it and a pump then that would be a pretty good price ... Cheers, Unc

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Well, that one looks much better built, but I can't see any means of driving it ... Is it electric or gas powered? If it includes something to drive it and a pump then that would be a pretty good price ... Cheers, Unc

In the description he says something about using a 12 volt car battery to turn the trommel. I already have a gas pump, hoses, and sluices, but he includes those in his $1495 version found here:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Trommel-Highbanker-Mark-2-/280778745540?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item415fb7a6c4#ht_1252wt_1189

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While I think trommels are great for recovering gold. I'm not sure I would want to invest in any of the smaller ones listed above,esp considering the cost. One yard an hour for a few hours by hand is almost impossible to attain by two people, much less a single guy. I made a highbanker out of a wood ,sluice box and grill that worked terrific and only cost less then $100.00 in parts and ran off the car battery...

If you plan on getting a backhoe to feed it, that's a different story,,, The key to success is volume...

Steve

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Honnestly, I looked at this for a long time over the last few months and I think that it will work fine as long as you use it wisely. The construction looks flimsy from a distance but then it also looks like stainless. The way they they are using it with a standard sluice box looks fine but with the trommel, you really don't need very much water. If you run it in a river then you should take a piece of roofing or another sluice with no riffles to set under the outfeed. This way it will clear the cobbles away. Personally, I like the looks and the concept of this unit, I think that it could have been presented in the video in a lot better way. The large rocks that they were putting through it were just for show and should have been washed off in the feeder and tossed aside by hand. It took them but rocks like that will kill any trommel. Throw a 2½"grizzly over the infeed if you have something laying around and set it up so that water sprays over the grizzly. With a little thought and some seasoned operators, this trommel could pay for itself in just a day easily.

Bottom line is I don't know how much you paid for it, and I hope you didn't pay $800 but if it has a guarantee, I'd love to come and see it running. I do like the looks of it as long as it is built solid.

Set it up right so it works totally for you and so it cleans it's own outfeed, put a wider sluice box under the trommel with just some small expanded metal over miners moss or carpet with no flare on the front and keep the water entering the box moving just fast enough to move the material on through it. They had way too much water going through the sluice in the video.

I think it's a winner if set up right. So if you bought it, then keep it and use it. You wouldn't have bought it if you weren't impressed with it. You should be able to shovel into that all day long without stopping. With a little more water it would easily outrun 2 people. I would like to see more water going through the spray bars but I like water, hehe.

If it doesn't pay for itself in a week then call me and I'll help you make the bucks with it. I'll be traveling through Arizona on my way to Texas after Christmas and would love to do some mining and making some new friends along the way.

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