Instructables
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Picture of Fine gold cleanup station
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I made this simple vortex bowl for separating the fine gold out of the black sand once I start prospecting this summer. I intend to get the black sand out of the sluice I will be running in the river at the spot I am prospecting then bring it home in buckets and run it through another finer sluice and then this vortex bowl. I made the bowl out of a small bucket and some scrap tubing that was laying around. I still need to add a cone around the exit tube so it isn't straight up and down. The bowl simply hooks up to a garden hose but uses so much water I think I will make it recirculating. I have tested it and it does work well as far as the light stuff dissipating quickly but cant do any prospecting to fully test it as everything is frozen and covered in snow!!! I will do a video at the end of the week to show it running but only have small bit of mud I found in a snowbank to run through it:) Lol Maybe I will get lucky and the snowplow was spreading gold instead of salt!! Anyway I hope you like it and if you check back soon there will be a video!! Thanks for reading!! Please if you have any suggestions or advice comment or pm me I am a total newbie to prospecting and need all the help I can get!! Now I have a question for anyone who knows these things: Will the top off a small traffic cone be any good for the cone around the exit tube?? Please help!!  P.S Don't mind the floral mat in the sluice!! It was the only indoor outdoor carpet I had !! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=umYDz95034I  That is the link to the video I need to shorten the exit tube alot before I put the cone on too!!
Susitna5 months ago
I grew up on Alaskan FAA Stations. My favourite was Yakataga. Population was 5 families, 18 DEW Line bachelors, 1 1st-8th grade teacher in winter, 2 old timers and 1 Eyak Indian. A mostly weekly airplane brought mail homework for the high schooler (me) groceries, mail and other unnecessaries. We were told that there was a glacial creek with popcorn salt sized gold dust and a nice new gold pan, shovel, and buckets.
After he stopped laughing, old timer Charlie gave us a rusty shovel to use (until could order some stair tread for a sluce box). We did most of our "panning" in the winter because summers were crazy time when 23 oil company teams from 7 countries came looking for oil.
The treads in the box trapped the gold and black sand when the angle was just right. When we had a bucket full of water, black sand, and dust, we boiled the water in a smooth stainless steel pot. We used a very small artists flat bottomed brush onto some waxed paper, removed the black sand with waxed paper between the magnet. Dust as fine as ours will stick to plastic bottles and we soon began to use glass bottles. Yakataga dust was 99 percent fine. Contact me if you have questions for which I may know the answer.
I was usually chasing eagles and other small wild life with my camera.
Mary Alice



camping crazy (author)  Susitna4 months ago

Sorry I never answered I just found your comment now. That sounds like a really awesome way to grow up, come spring when I start prospecting again I will no doubt have more than a few questions :) Thanks for the tips like that glass bottle one, the gold I have found was super fine and almost impossible to be able to deal with in such a tiny amount I never thought of simply using glass instead.

The gold at Cspe Yakataga is about as fine as it gets. I think that's probably why it was 98% pure. The summer I lived there, a prospecting company was trying to find some there that was not as fine , but had no luck. Since Charlie Bilderback's claim is still for sale, it's likely no one has yet invented a was to commercially mine it. Our little sluce box was quite time consuming. Cood luck with your prospecting. Even if the prospecting does not become profitable, you still get to camp in amazing places. Also remember nearly all the Alaska "reality" are as phoney as a 3 dollar bill. Most Alaskan who don't behave foolishly in the wild never have a dangerous incident. Both of mine were caused by sheer stupidity. However, the large wildlifr in the south 48 states are truely scary sine they no longer have their natural fear of humans. In Alaska, if you are caught feeding wildlife you WILL GO TO JAIL. Alaskans are serious about wildlife laws. Too many people depend on hunting. Mary Alice

still waiting on update <3

camping crazy (author)  Sir_Warrior_1-69 months ago

I never ended up using it much so never bothered maybe soon though!!

camping crazy (author) 1 year ago

Thanks!! Ive done a bit of prospecting but only found alot of pyrite and black sand:( I cant wait for summer!! The rivers are way too cold to pan in and also too hard to get to!!

Very cool! Have you had much luck?