Hey there fellow gold miners! Terry here, and if you want to be successful in this business, you gotta have the right tools. Here are my top 5 picks:
- A reliable pickaxe: You’ll need a sturdy pickaxe to break up rock and get at those nuggets.
- A sluice box: This is a must-have for separating gold from other materials like sand and gravel.
- A metal detector: This can be a real game-changer when it comes to finding nuggets and other treasure.
- A good pair of boots: You’ll be spending a lot of time on your feet, so make sure you have comfortable, durable boots that can handle rough terrain.
- A sense of humor: Let’s face it, this can be a tough and frustrating business at times. Having a good sense of humor and the ability to crack jokes (and maybe smoke a little weed) can help keep you sane and motivated!
The Top 11 Tools You Need to Be a Successful Gold Miner
Gold prospecting is an exciting pursuit and, like any serious endeavor, requires the right tools. The gear you’ll need ranges from basic essentials to large machinery, depending on how invested you are in your gold mining operation. Here’s a more comprehensive list, including examples from my own experience, of what you might need as you dive deeper into the world of prospecting:
1. Gold Pan: This is your foundational tool. It’s affordable, portable, and quite effective when used correctly.
2. Shovel: A rugged, durable shovel is vital for digging up dirt to sift through.
3. Bucket: Useful for carrying your finds and moving water if you’re not near a river or stream.
4. Metal Detector: A useful tool for scanning the ground for any signs of metal—primarily gold. My trusty F350 Ford 4X4 pickup truck has an integrated detector, and it’s a game-changer.
5. Sluice Box: This tool is an upgrade from the gold pan, allowing you to process more material quickly by channeling water to separate the gold.
1. High Banker Sluice Box: This piece of equipment takes the basic sluice box to the next level. It includes a water pump, allowing you to prospect away from the water source.
2. Trommel: This is a motor-driven screening device that separates the dirt from the gold. It increases productivity and is especially useful when you’re dealing with a lot of material. Our trommel, mounted on a low bed and built in 2007, runs like a dream and can process up to 150 yards per hour.
1. Bulldozer: For more substantial operations, a bulldozer is a useful tool to move massive amounts of dirt and rocks. We have a D8H Bulldozer, but she needs a bit of work to get back into shape.
2. Loader: Loaders like our 6-yard Trojan with a new motor and 4-yard Michigan with new tires, are perfect for handling large amounts of material.
3. Excavator: A machine like our Hitachi EX200 is excellent for digging and moving large amounts of earth, essential in larger-scale operations.
4. Trucks: A truck, like our 1996 Maxy Rock Truck or 2004 F150 pickup, is essential for moving tools, equipment, and finds.
Other essential tools include submersible pumps to clear water from your working area (we’ve got a couple of 6″ brand new ones and 3 new 8″), generators for power needs (we use a 250 Kw Daiwae generator and an Onon 10 kw generator), welders (like our brand new Lincoln 305G), and hoses (we have 1000′ new 8″ Lay Flat Hose).
Lastly, don’t forget the importance of a good camp setup for those longer prospecting trips. We use an Atlas Bus as a tool shed and have a wooden shed for additional storage. A tidy tank, like our 100 gallon one, is perfect for fuel storage. A reliable compressor, such as our 14 hp Kohler, complete with air tools, is a must-have. For fine-tuning, we use an RP4 clean up system, and for heavy-duty work, we have a 60-ton press. Lastly, don’t forget a good supply of spare parts for your machinery – there’s nothing worse than a breakdown in the middle of a productive day!
Remember, while this list might seem overwhelming, you don’t need everything right away. Start with the basics, and as your love for prospecting grows (and hopefully, the size of your gold finds!), you can slowly invest in more extensive equipment.
Until next time, happy prospecting, and may the golden gleam of good fortune always catch your eye!