when is a pan test considered good

alaskagems

Newbie
Mar 21, 2021
1
3
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
Hello everyone, I am new to this forum but not to the mining industry. I have a gold mine here in alaska. There are three small creeks on five thousand acres. Of course I have panned a ton of tests. It is remote so I did so before flying my four inch dredge out. I usually get from One to three grams for four to five hours of dredging and that is surface gravel as I have not reached bedrock yet. I believe the bedrock is around twenty feet. I find gold fly speck in almost every random pan. Some tests yield four or five colors per pan others much more. One random pan for instance had twenty spec. What I would like to know is what is considered a good pan test as far as how many spec or color per each pan. Im considering placer mining the area. I believe I am getting good enough results to warrant further development but it is so remote i must be certain Im on to something here. I also found and verified corundum some of which are gem quality, blue saphire looking similar to kashmir blue as well as yellow, purple, pink, and red. The largest blue so far is only two carats but I have only processed less than 100 yards of material. Thanks for any input I may receive
 
Upvote 0

RTR

Gold Member
Nov 21, 2017
6,172
22,970
Smith Mt. Lake Va.
Detector(s) used
Teknetics Liberator
Falcon MD-20
***********
Blue Bowl
Angus MacKirk sluice
Miller Table
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
Post hole driller ?
 

RTR

Gold Member
Nov 21, 2017
6,172
22,970
Smith Mt. Lake Va.
Detector(s) used
Teknetics Liberator
Falcon MD-20
***********
Blue Bowl
Angus MacKirk sluice
Miller Table
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
You might be able to rent one of these.And some companies make auger extensions to drill deeper.
 

Underburden

Sr. Member
Mar 22, 2012
484
1,123
Idaho
Detector(s) used
Gold Hog Stream Sluice
Primary Interest:
Prospecting
Don't forget that one major ingredient when starting a new project: One MILLION dollars.:laughing7:
 

CGC Miner

Full Member
Nov 18, 2010
194
343
High Rockies
Detector(s) used
GB2
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
For a placer operation you are generally not going to be in or within 100' or so of the active river channel. (this may vary in AK) so test pans from the active channel do not tell you much about the ground you could potentially dig with heavy equipment.

Sounds like you should be scouting around that vast area trying to located enrichment zones and where bedrock may be much more shallow. Sounds fun, best of luck to you!!
 

Goldwasher

Gold Member
May 26, 2009
5,998
12,998
Sailor Flat, Ca.
🥇 Banner finds
1
Detector(s) used
SDC2300, Gold Bug 2 Burlap, fish oil, .35 gallons of water per minute.
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
5000 acres ?
 

oneguy

Sr. Member
Aug 26, 2015
371
1,292
Montana
Detector(s) used
Goldmonster, SDC 2300, GPX 6000
etrac
Primary Interest:
Metal Detecting
Post hole driller ?

I'm sorry but I couldn't even watch the vid because I was laughing too hard at the guy on there. Hard to take anyone seriously when they are dressed like that....lol
On a more serious note, I'd thought of that but reality is IN MY AREAS way too many larger rocks/cobbles that would stop that rig in a heartbeat, not to mention steep brushy ground. jmo
 

RTR

Gold Member
Nov 21, 2017
6,172
22,970
Smith Mt. Lake Va.
Detector(s) used
Teknetics Liberator
Falcon MD-20
***********
Blue Bowl
Angus MacKirk sluice
Miller Table
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
I'm sorry but I couldn't even watch the vid because I was laughing too hard at the guy on there. Hard to take anyone seriously when they are dressed like that....lol
On a more serious note, I'd thought of that but reality is IN MY AREAS way too many larger rocks/cobbles that would stop that rig in a heartbeat, not to mention steep brushy ground. jmo

Yeah, well, if, you get passed the clothes...there's some good info there
 

et1955

Hero Member
Jan 10, 2015
795
1,443
Shoreline,wa
Detector(s) used
Equinox 800
Primary Interest:
Prospecting
Hello everyone, I am new to this forum but not to the mining industry. I have a gold mine here in alaska. There are three small creeks on five thousand acres. Of course I have panned a ton of tests. It is remote so I did so before flying my four inch dredge out. I usually get from One to three grams for four to five hours of dredging and that is surface gravel as I have not reached bedrock yet. I believe the bedrock is around twenty feet. I find gold fly speck in almost every random pan. Some tests yield four or five colors per pan others much more. One random pan for instance had twenty spec. What I would like to know is what is considered a good pan test as far as how many spec or color per each pan. Im considering placer mining the area. I believe I am getting good enough results to warrant further development but it is so remote i must be certain Im on to something here. I also found and verified corundum some of which are gem quality, blue saphire looking similar to kashmir blue as well as yellow, purple, pink, and red. The largest blue so far is only two carats but I have only processed less than 100 yards of material. Thanks for any input I may receive
Here In Washington state on the rivers I mine I average 1 gram panning or sluicing per hour, each method requires a different understanding on how to mine using those methods. You say you have 3 creeks running threw your claim, is it possible those creeks are running threw an ancient river deposit ?, analyze any topo maps of your claim for possible ancient river flows but if this is an ancient glacial deposit AND FROM WHAT YOU SAID ON YOUR RECOVERY RATE, not worth it. Best wishes and good luck but the gems are awesome.
 

Goodyguy

Gold Member
Mar 10, 2007
6,485
6,838
Arizona
Detector(s) used
Whites TM 808, Whites GMT, Tesoro Lobo Super Traq, Fisher Gold Bug 2, Suction Dredges, Trommels, Gold Vacs, High Bankers, Fluid bed Gold Traps, Rock Crushers, Sluices, Dry Washers, Miller Tables, Rp4
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
Yeah, well, if, you get passed the clothes...there's some good info there

Allan is a friend of mine and the getup is his youtube signature look.
He actually is a retired areospace engineer and loves prospecting as well as designing and making his own equipment.

He definitely is someone worth taking seriously, costume not withstanding. :tongue3:
As far as the post hole digger goes, it's not for every situation.

GG~
 
Last edited:

Bonaro

Hero Member
Aug 9, 2004
939
2,076
Olympia WA
Detector(s) used
Minelab Xterra 70, Minelab SD 2200d, 2.5", 3", 4"and several Keene 5" production dredges, Knelson Centrifuge, Gold screw automatic panner
Primary Interest:
Prospecting
Fly specs don't add up, especially in a small operation.
"worthwhile: is easy to calculate. Add up all the gold you find in a day or week. Subtract the cost of fuel, food etc... and if you dont end up with minimum wage after that then you are wasting your time.
If you are not seeing at least 1/4 oz after a day of panning and sluicing then you need to keep looking...unless you are just having fun
 

mytimetoshine

Bronze Member
Jun 23, 2013
1,574
3,361
El Dorado County
Detector(s) used
GRIZZLY GOLD TRAP - ANGUS MACKIRK EXPLORER- BLUE BOWL - GOLD CUBE, MINELAB PRO 25 PINPOINTER-
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
Fly specs don't add up, especially in a small operation.
"worthwhile: is easy to calculate. Add up all the gold you find in a day or week. Subtract the cost of fuel, food etc... and if you dont end up with minimum wage after that then you are wasting your time.
If you are not seeing at least 1/4 oz after a day of panning and sluicing then you need to keep looking...unless you are just having fun
1/4 oz per day with just a pan or you're wasting your time?! Lol those are some high standards Bonaro! Let's change that to 1/4 gram maybe haha
 

et1955

Hero Member
Jan 10, 2015
795
1,443
Shoreline,wa
Detector(s) used
Equinox 800
Primary Interest:
Prospecting
1/4 oz per day with just a pan or you're wasting your time?! Lol those are some high standards Bonaro! Let's change that to 1/4 gram maybe haha

Not high standards at all, to be productive Bonaro is right, 1/4 gram a day panning is a waste of time if you are trying to make money mining. It is not about standards but experience that determines the the amount of gold you find plus having good ground.
 

RTR

Gold Member
Nov 21, 2017
6,172
22,970
Smith Mt. Lake Va.
Detector(s) used
Teknetics Liberator
Falcon MD-20
***********
Blue Bowl
Angus MacKirk sluice
Miller Table
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
"when is a test pan considered good" ? When you can't lift it :)lol Sorry I couldn't help it :)
 

mytimetoshine

Bronze Member
Jun 23, 2013
1,574
3,361
El Dorado County
Detector(s) used
GRIZZLY GOLD TRAP - ANGUS MACKIRK EXPLORER- BLUE BOWL - GOLD CUBE, MINELAB PRO 25 PINPOINTER-
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
Not high standards at all, to be productive Bonaro is right, 1/4 gram a day panning is a waste of time if you are trying to make money mining. It is not about standards but experience that determines the the amount of gold you find plus having good ground.
Clearly it depends on "if your trying to make money" and Clearly the size of the operation and overhead is a huge factor. I was only referring to the part where he said 1/4 ounce with just a pan or sluice. Which Clearly would NOT be a waste of time, or anything close to it.
 

Tesorodeoro

Hero Member
Jan 21, 2018
598
960
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
Clearly it depends on "if your trying to make money" and Clearly the size of the operation and overhead is a huge factor. I was only referring to the part where he said 1/4 ounce with just a pan or sluice. Which Clearly would NOT be a waste of time, or anything close to it.

I know people that “make money” finding whatever gold they can.
Some days it’s very little or even none. Other days it’s pretty dang good.

“Waste of time” is such a relative term as is “making money”.

Because people’s overhead costs, financial needs, and quality of ground varies...so does the level of effort that is deemed acceptable based on the return. Obviously that varies tremendously with the price of gold and fuel.

I understood the original question to be related to what kind of sample returns justify bringing in heavy equipment in Alaska - not what kind of sample returns make it worth the time to pan and sluice. I.e. it’s multiplied by the quantity of material you can move and or wash and factored against the cost to get setup.

Maybe I am mistaken..I will read again.

I understood what you were saying and do not question your experience or knowledge.
 
Last edited:

mytimetoshine

Bronze Member
Jun 23, 2013
1,574
3,361
El Dorado County
Detector(s) used
GRIZZLY GOLD TRAP - ANGUS MACKIRK EXPLORER- BLUE BOWL - GOLD CUBE, MINELAB PRO 25 PINPOINTER-
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
I know people that “make money” finding whatever gold they can.
Some days it’s very little or even none. Other days it’s pretty dang good.

“Waste of time” is such a relative term as is “making money”.

Because people’s overhead costs, financial needs, and quality of ground varies...so does the level of effort that is deemed acceptable based on the return. Obviously that varies tremendously with the price of gold and fuel.

I understood the original question to be related to what kind of sample returns justify bringing in heavy equipment in Alaska - not what kind of sample returns make it worth the time to pan and sluice. I.e. it’s multiplied by the quantity of material you can move and or wash and factored against the cost to get setup.

Maybe I am mistaken..I will read again.

I understood what you were saying and do not question your experience or knowledge.
Honestly I was just making a light-hearted joke.. but..

I agree they are talking about determining if the ground is rich enough.for a large operation. How is that even the ?

It all depends on the situation as far as over head. I don't understand the confusion. The more material your op moves the lower quality pay you can run to make it worth while.. in theory. Large operation regularly run 10 bucks a yard dirt...that's a far cry from 1/4 ounce in a day with just a pan...

If you ever had that ground and could scale it up well you'd be filthy rich. Maybe Bonaro didn't mean 1/4 ounce.. idk ..I was just point out that would be crazy rich.
 

Bonaro

Hero Member
Aug 9, 2004
939
2,076
Olympia WA
Detector(s) used
Minelab Xterra 70, Minelab SD 2200d, 2.5", 3", 4"and several Keene 5" production dredges, Knelson Centrifuge, Gold screw automatic panner
Primary Interest:
Prospecting
1/4 oz per day with just a pan or you're wasting your time?! Lol those are some high standards Bonaro! Let's change that to 1/4 gram maybe haha

The OP asked if it was worth it... That depends on what the goal is. If you are just trying to spend the day panning and being outdoors then this is worth it.

If you are trying to turn even the most meager of profits then this spot is dead. A quarter oz is worth about $350 considering impurities. Subtract $75 for fuel, $25 for food plus replacing the shovel you broke and you are down to about $250. Divide that by 10 hours of panning/sluicing, 3 hours of travel time and another 3 hours of cleanup to get just gold in a vial and you are making about $15 bucks an hour. So yeah, 1/4 oz a day... Anything less and you are just messing around and having fun.

He didn't mention heavy equipment, only a 4" dredge. I might dredge this site with a 4" to test for better color and if found, bring in a actual production dredge. but would not consider any heavy equipment without drilling
 
Last edited:

Top Member Reactions

Users who are viewing this thread

Latest Discussions

Top