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If I was in gold country...


Rimshot

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I have seen all the work that Adam & BD has done with all of his before and after pictures and it got me to thinking there has to be an easier way to catch gold in a dry stream bed. So I come up with this idea.

1st find you a source of gold and then go down stream a few yards. Dig you a trench across the stream the width of a gallon coffee can and as deep as a coffee can is tall. Put several coffee cans in the trench like the drawing shows. Also put a good size rock in each coffee can so they don't float out of the trench when it rains. Now put some kind of marker (paint will do) in line with the cans so when you return you can find them. Leave and come back in a couple of months. Hopefully you get rain.

When you return, dig the cans out and all of the dirt around the cans. When you separate the gold from the dirt and rock I believe you will be surprized at all of the gold.

Now I know some of you are wondering "why not just dig a trench and no cans." Well the reason for the cans is because you might not find the trench when you come back. The cans will also make it easier for you to remove the dirt and gold. All the digging you'll have to do is directly over the trench and in the trench around where the cans were.

If you try this, i'd like to know how it worked. Good Luck!

Rim

PS- I almost forgot, you'll need a good size pick and a flat blade shovel for the trench. That's all!

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Edited by Rimshot
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When water moves in a 'dry wash' it is moving pretty fast in most cases. You don't have to have a 'can' to hunt these washes or gullies ... just go to the natural collecting points. Benches and little water falls and collection ponds are likely spots and I think all of us go to these areas after big rains to look there first. Even 'small' 3-4 acre watersheds will produce a significant movement of soil if you have a thunderstorm. Rains less than that have little effect.

Mitchel

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lol!!!! There you gooooooooo. Build a trench with miners moss. I knew i'd get those gears a turning... :4chsmu1:

Edited by Rimshot
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Steel railroad ties work much better as turns that creek into a sluicebox.Cut to 5' lengths and a Few boulders to hold and help channelize the stream and good to go. My Uncle placed them in a mariposa creek back in the 40s and I used'm for at least 22 years till the pieces disappeared. Someone liked the idea I guess-John

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The whole point to my post was "Easy Recovery." True, you will have to get your buckets and dump the cans in a bucket. Probably several trenchs spaced out would do better. And as far as the cans coming out of the trench when it floods, I don't agree. The cans will fill up with water, dirt, rocks, and hopefully gold. There will be no resistance to the cans other than downward force. The walls of the trench will protect the cans. The only problem would be picking and digging the trench with straight up walls and a flat bottom.

Oh well, maybe one day i'll get off my butt and come to AZ and try it. Then i'll have to show you it works...hehe!!!

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Edited by Rimshot
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Unlike eastern and mid-western rivers, a lot of western U.S. streams are hard packed with cobbles. Might be a bit of work to "trench". But, nonetheless, in the proper context I can envision this strategy as being worth a try.

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One time I robbed some shage carpet from the dumpster behind a carpet shop. Placed it in a wash with known gold Small Small Small stuff. Put some big butt rocks on the leading edge to keep in place. Came back after a few good rains and Dug it out of the ft of sand that covered it. out of the six ft by five ft carpet I washed out a 1/4 oz of some of the finest gold you ever seen. The place had gold but it was so fine you couldn't pan enough to make a day. It would blow through any sluice. The Henry Henry worked but was too slow. Some times I will place a Smaller peace like that in a Creak to check on later. Lazy mans sampling.

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Hoping some one doesn't add carbon filters to this thread ... That was an old time scam (based upon good scientific evidence, however) that was advertised for years in ICJM, and a few other places ... Carbon will attract gold ... At the rate of about 10 tons of carbon to one ounce of gold ... Legend is that the old timers in the Klamath region burnt down hill sides and then panned the carbon after a few years ... Anyhow, there were some folks 20 years or so ago that were advertising placing carbon filters in gold bearing creeks ... They were selling $9 filters for like $300 each ... They advertised for a long time in small town news papers and some magazines so some must have been suckered in ...Cheers, Unc

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We used to do 20 ounce pours on two 60 lb carbon columns every other day., but I have to say that's under the right conditions (cyanide leaching) not just running water though it from a gold rich area. AzNuggetBob

Edited by AzNuggetBob
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Adam i'm sure it has some kinks in it but why do you think it won't work? My thinking is the cans are gona fill up mighty fast but if a series of cans (rows) were set up over say 30 feet lenth of wash maybe it would have a descent chance at catching gold. BTW my 1st picture was exagerated. It would only be like five or six cans depend on how wide and concave the wash was. Like to here your thoughts though.

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Rim, it's a good idea, but the can method would be really tough in a desert wash. If you've never seen a monsoon then I understand why you'd think it would work. There are rains that last for an hour or less out here that move rocks as big as cars. It is nothing like a stream with a predictable water flow year round. I have dug several holes that were eight or nine feet deep, with mountains of rocks on either side of a stream, a brief rain and there is not a trace of it left. I don't even think the railroad tie idea would work in my area. You would need to bolt the wood or cans to the rock because that water will move everything that isn't bedrock when it really rains. These streams out here that are foot deep channels, can literally be strong enough to kill you with just a little rain. I spoke to a guy after the last monsoon season here in September. He had set up a sluice under some boulders in the stream thinking he would go cleanup after the rain. Needless to say he never saw his sluice or the boulders again. If you've ever seen a waist high boulder casually "walking" it's way down through a foot deep stream after the rain, then you know what these washes can do. Even if buried, once submerged in water that empty can is going to become buoyant. Another problem is that the sporadic and very strong water flows often make for real weird gold deposition spots. I can't tell you how many times I've seen a huge crack or pit that was a textbook example of where gold should be caught and not found a speck in it, even in a proven gold bearing stream. The water is so strong during a flood that a lot of my bigger nuggets have been found high up on the walls of a creek from what I call the "half pipe" effect. That water is rushing through there so fast that it's throwing things all over the place, including washing gold right up the bank of a wash and out of the water course where it just stops and sits there. The last rain season here was the most rain I've ever seen here, and I was told it was one of the biggest rains we've had in fifty years. After that rain, I have found lots of gold by specking it up, all my biggest peices came from higher up the creek banks and walls where they were washed out of the flow and dropped. Several were literally just sitting on the ground in plain site.

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Helpful info Chris. I'm not really thinking about the massive wide streams. I'm thinking more inline with the washes like Adam and Dash work. Small washes. True, a can may get crushed, but that's to be expected. But if the boulder is larger then the trench then I would expect that it's going to roll over the trench. As for as the can becoming buoyant, a few tiny holes in the bottom should stop that from happening. But I did mention earlier to just put a large rock in it and i'm thinking the trench walls will hold it in place also. Square cans would be better I suppose. I think maybe those cans welding rods come in, those would be a dandy honey hole can. And nope, we ain't gona catch all the gold, but we can durn sure try.

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Out swinging one day I found a sluce box of sorts someone had made in the bedrock using cement in a narrow spot in a wash. I think It would work but why not just use a vacpack to clean it out. AzNuggetBob

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AZ which do you think is faster? Picking up 5 cans full of dirt and dumping them into a five gallon bucket or vacpacking the total space those cans took up. Plus i/you don't have to be on our hands and knees (ouch) picking up those 1 gallon cans. I bet old me could pick up those cans and dump them in a 5 gallon can in less then 20 seconds. When you get old you gota think smarter or things won't get done...lol

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I'd bet your cans are going to get jammed so tight in the bedrock its going to take a prybar to get them out. AzNuggetBob

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I can only say this...You won't know until you try it. I'm pretty sure someplace, somewhere, an oldtimer has already tried this.

Edited by Rimshot
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Find a place that sells "tin horns" or metal culverts that go under a road or drive way....get the size to fit the stream then cut it in half length ways.....then you have two by putting the ends together.....

Then drill holes in the corners for a shackle and bolt so you have an anchor point for your cables to anchor them in place.

The "ribs" act like a sluice box riffles.

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lol Don, culverts are pretty heavy when full of dirt and rocks...and how would you ever dump it into a bucket? I'm thinking easy, cheap, easy to lift and dump in a bucket. Minimal use of shovels. Just the digging of the trench would be enuf work for me...haha! I also thought of gutters and guard railings but it's just to heavy for old peeps. You must be eating spinach every day...haha!!!

Edited by Rimshot
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