Right when working a small water way, with a dredge murking can be a large problem. Caused by our tailings, slowing the current of the waterway. More or less damming it. We all know if we cant see because of the murk, it makes dredging very difficult, and heaps of blockages and lots of other problems. Even in a large waterway, esp a backwash the same can occur. So I got to thinking. Yep I do a lot of that. How do I stop it, or slow it down enough so I can see whilst I am sucking… And then an idea came to me. I put it into practice and voila, it worked actually better than I thought. I had an old knackered fishing net stored away to be re slung one day. Now a fishing net, whether a flounder net or other fish net, has floats along the top, and lead weights on the bottom line. Off to Mitre 10 I went and purchased a good long length of shade cloth, also you can use weed cloth. Cheap to buy. Mitre 10 also sell these plastic clips you can use to secure the shade cloth. I cut the old net away. and using the clips attached the shade cloth. Then it was off to test it, worked wonders.
Lay it across the creek up by my nozzle, but leaving enough room to work. The lead line draped over the suction hose. No matter the depth of the water, the top line floats. Now the shade cloth allowed what flow there was to still flow, but the murk was held behind the shade cloth, it just didn’t come back through. It was then just a matter of working forward until the front of the dredge was butting up against the shade cloth. Then it was just a matter of resetting the shade cloth net further ahead. And away I went again. Even used it in the Buller river working a stagnant backwash. On that occasion I used it like an oil spill boom and boy did it work. It was a muddy bloody hole but the boom kept the murk at bay. So hunt around for an old flounder or fishing net. Off to Mitre 10 and you are away.
Cheers Trev aka “The Hatter”