The most common method of placer mining, especially for the recreationalist, is going out to the river with a gold pan and shovel. On occasion when experience tells them that perhaps a classifier would also be a good investment to cut down on the amount of large worthless material that gets into the gold pan.
Lets face it. When we go out prospecting or placer mining, we are on “Commission”, so you want to maximize your recovery for your time and effort, right?
Well, the act of shovelling has several draw backs. It causes vibration that drives gold deeper, when digging in a current, gold can be blown right off the shovel. You can’t get into tight spots or between large boulders without moving them, thus causing gold that may be trapped between them to fall deeper and gone forever, and who wants to keep digging up 10lb rocks on every shovel full, and having to classify each scoop? Not only is it hard on the back, it is taking valuable time which could be spent recovering quality pay dirt.
Vibration Loses Gold!
Gold is heavy. It finds the deepest cracks and crevices and hides there and is difficult to get once it reaches that point, especially if it’s submerged. The act of shovelling actually helps drive gold deeper and away from recovery due to simple vibration. Sure, you will recover much of it, but when you think about the mechanics of this action, especially in water, you will understand how much of the gold you are seeking is actually escaping.
Think about the bed of a river or stream, it’s actually like a tile floor (but not nearly as smooth and level). If you know anything about tile floors, they are spaced apart, and those spaces are filled with a grout. In a river, the rocks would be like the tiles. Spaces between them would be filled with the finer gravel and sand. Mixed with that gravel and sand could be gold and other heavy metal or gemstones.
When you dig with a shovel to get at the gravel, you strike those rocks and submerged boulders causing a vibration that stratifies that gravel and creates a fluid bed and gold will fall through it thus driving itself deeper into another hiding place. So, what doesn’t get scooped up by your shovel, finds itself being driven down deeper and deeper until it’s unrecoverable. At least by shovelling that is.
Using Suction Is Less Work!
Using “Suction Technology” on the other hand has totally different mechanics. When you place the suction tip over an area, and suck up the gravel, it gets pulled from between those rocks and boulders, and not given a chance to fall deeper into oblivion. Once you pull all that gravel out from between those rocks, you simply use a garden hook to flick them out of the hole, will little disturbance to what’s underneath, and begin sucking up the material that is under them, and so on.
Using our hand dredge system you don’t have to classify your material because it does this automatically. Each tip has a separation that keeps the larger worthless gravel from entering the recovery bucket, so you can concentrate on just recovery, not recovery and classifying.
The result is a bucket full of more pay dirt and less junk that needs to be processed out maximizing the amount of material you can process in a day. Remember, the more you process, the more you make.
Time and volume = more $$