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Thread: Making your own mats

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  1. #1

    Dec 2015
    63
    23 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting

    Making your own mats

    fellow in montana used lego blocks to make a mold and silicone calking to make mats. a 10 by 10 inch base plate has about 32 times 32 ~ 1028 little posts making catch pockits and the blocks very the level ands make drop riffles. their are two formulas of silicone calk one mixed with dawn dish soap and one mixed with corn starch. I tried an acrilic silioconized calk but added to much corn starch and then added water. made a nice batter which is slowly drying out in the pot in a fridge. likely will toss it. got silicone for second try 3.35 at the family doller store for 9 oz.
    the elastomarics cost about 25 a gallon or 80 for 4.5. they are acrillic latex. true liqiid rubber epdm from rubberits is 29 fo0r a quaRT nD 80 FOR 5 GALLON. intrestingly they sell a cround rubber to bulk their product. any thoughts would be aqpreciated. looking at the cost for epdm I apreciate the cost charged from manufactures like gold hog for their matts. wonder if elastomaric mats or even latex paints given enough dryng time would work.

    thankyou for your thoughts

  2. #2
    us
    Mar 2012
    Idaho
    Gold Hog Stream Sluice
    394
    908 times
    Prospecting
    Too much work just to re-invent the wheel.
    See line #1 in my signature.
    Clay Diggins and Bonaro like this.
    Just because you CAN do something, doesn't mean you SHOULD.
    Visit my Idaho Gold Prospecting Blog at Bedrock or Bust
    US Army Pacific 1969-1971
    2015 Stroke Survivor
    2016 Cancer Survivor
    2017 2nd Stroke Survivor
    2018 Pacemaker Recipient
    Every Day Is A Beautiful Day

  3. #3

    Aug 2012
    RD1000, GSSI Profiler EMP-400. GPZ 14 & 19
    4,324
    8913 times
    you can make toilet paper too, but I am not risking my hand or gold with either.
    Quote Originally Posted by G.I.B. View Post
    I'm not an Idiot Whisperer. I can't help you any further with the math.

  4. #4
    us
    captain

    Dec 2016
    ohio
    bounty hunter time ranger
    206
    176 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    I think if you were an engineer with experience in hydraulic theory and came up an improved riffle design it would worth just buying rubber compounds.

  5. #5
    us
    captain

    Dec 2016
    ohio
    bounty hunter time ranger
    206
    176 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    Wheels were made of stone once no?
    Bodfish Mike and Darth Placer like this.

  6. #6
    us
    Mar 2012
    Idaho
    Gold Hog Stream Sluice
    394
    908 times
    Prospecting
    The red flag in that post was the insertion of the words LEGO BLOCKS)
    Oddjob likes this.
    Just because you CAN do something, doesn't mean you SHOULD.
    Visit my Idaho Gold Prospecting Blog at Bedrock or Bust
    US Army Pacific 1969-1971
    2015 Stroke Survivor
    2016 Cancer Survivor
    2017 2nd Stroke Survivor
    2018 Pacemaker Recipient
    Every Day Is A Beautiful Day

  7. #7
    Charter Member
    us
    Mine President, XPBC, GIH

    Dec 2013
    Arcata, California
    Fisher 1212-x Fisher Gold Bug 2 Whites 4900/SP3 Rocker boxes, Keene sluices, Bazooka sluice, 2.5", 4" lowbankers, highbankers. Witch Sticks.
    572
    626 times
    Prospecting
    I have some plans laying around somewhere for a reciprocating sluice box/centrifuge system that utilized rubber riffle components made from a room temp vulcanizing rubber. I don't see anything wrong with LEGO's I have used them in the past for making boxes for making rubber molds for glass casting.

    The simple matter of fact is some people enjoy reinventing the wheel and there isn't **** wrong with it. Some of us like to experiment with riffle designs, I have plenty of experience of people attacking me for trying new things in my dredge. Calling out safety problems is one thing but calling out on DIY is a waste of everyone's time, if you don't have anything good to say don't say anything at all is my opinion.
    Last edited by N-Lionberger; Jan 26, 2019 at 11:16 AM.

  8. #8
    us
    Mar 2013
    39
    51 times
    Prospecting
    I agree, if you feel Legos have the right profile for what you are looking to accomplish..... go for it.

    I use Vortex conveyor belting in all of my equipment... all those small voids make a huge difference in the fine gold recovered at the end of the day.

    My take on this is the fellow from Montana is trying to take a drop riffle design (very effective) and merging it with the belting I use in my dredge/highbanker/sluices (also very effective) Works well on the Gold Cube too.

    Unless you try it you will never know. Never knock a guy for trying.

    The guy that made the first wheel from stone I'm not sure about, as history from the long long ago is a but hazed. He might have done some prototypes with logs.... maybe watermelons.

    Don't get me wrong I have seen some really bad ideas posted on different forums.... I don't feel this is one of them.

    At the end of the day it comes down to the cleanup results. I haven't seen them but do like this idea and think it is one worth pursuing, this is a low cost method to try an idea out.

    Seafox my thoughts are to make the drops one Lego short width long(4 dimples).... and 4 short widths on the top flats (16 dimples). Depth of the drop 1 or 2 Legos deep. Wouldn't write off the underside of the Lego either... it has some interesting patterns.

    Please do post some results however good or bad. Have a feeling they will be good on this one. Get to work!!!!

  9. #9
    us
    Feb 2018
    Western Massachusetts
    47
    63 times
    Prospecting
    Because of the shape of legos, it might be hard to pull your mat from the mold after it set. You might want to spray the mold with silicone mold release spray before pouring the rubber.

    http://www.amazon.com/Sprayway-SW946...xkL&ref=plSrch

    Something like this might help.

  10. #10
    us
    Just Another Old Guy

    Feb 2008
    Grays Harbor in Washington state
    Whites Spectrum XLT with about 1/4" of dust on it
    627
    1136 times
    Prospecting
    Using the regular size lego's and some of the large lego blocks would make an interesting profile. one section small indents next section larger indents... repeat.
    I say go for it, sounds like a good winter experiment to me.
    I'm a drinker with a heavy prospecting problem and I'm out of dirt again

  11. #11
    us
    Dec 2018
    Alaska
    None, This is new to me
    169
    263 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    What about using that spray on flex seal stuff, will that work??

  12. #12
    us
    Apr 2015
    Oshkosh, WI
    880
    1274 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    Might want to stagger the bricks a little, otherwise there's spots in the mat that might not catch anything.

  13. #13

    Aug 2015
    Las Vegas, NV
    58
    128 times
    Prospecting
    I really don't know about making gold mats, but I do have a couple of quick thoughts on the topic.

    I believe it all comes down to what you are interested in. If you are focused on getting gold out of the ground, then buy a good mat and get shoveling. Let the mat pay for itself and put money in your pocket. If you are actually interested in making your own mats as part of the hobby, then go for it. Mess with different profiles and see if you find something that works for you. Nothing wrong with wanting to "make your own". On something as crucial as gold recovery, you will need to spend quite a bit of time making sure that your home crafted mat is actually effective at catching gold.

    I've spent so much money in my lifetime trying to save money....

    Joanne

  14. #14
    us
    Aug 2004
    Olympia WA
    Minelab Xterra 70, Minelab SD 2200d, 2.5", 3", 4"and several Keene 5" production dredges, Knelson Centrifuge, Gold screw automatic panner
    821
    1793 times
    Prospecting
    All I know is...if Lego Mats show up on the market....people will buy them and predictably, they will swear by them

  15. #15

    Dec 2015
    63
    23 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting

    wonder how much the room vulcani-zing rubber costs

    Quote Originally Posted by N-Lionberger View Post
    I have some plans laying around somewhere for a reciprocating sluice box/centrifuge system that utilized rubber riffle components made from a room temp vulcanizing rubber. I don't see anything wrong with LEGO's I have used them in the past for making boxes for making rubber molds for glass casting.

    The simple matter of fact is some people enjoy reinventing the wheel and there isn't **** wrong with it. Some of us like to experiment with riffle designs, I have plenty of experience of people attacking me for trying new things in my dredge. Calling out safety problems is one thing but calling out on DIY is a waste of everyone's time, if you don't have anything good to say don't say anything at all is my opinion.
    I tried the silicone with corn starch last night and didn't have enough starch to get it to non sticky puddy , thus could not roll it out with a pipe but used stick as best I could. one tube of calk from family doller at 3.35$ 9 oz did about 4 inches pf mat 10 inches wide. N-Lionberger. that sounds intresting about casting glass was it liquid glass poured in or powdered glass fused after filling mold and what about the rubber burning?

 

 
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