Me mate who who used to live in the wrong Island, and came down to dredge on my claim in the Buller, finally saw the light and shifted to Queenstown a couple of years back. In the early days I knick named him “Mellow Puff”, after a season or two he kinda completed his apprenticeship under my harsh teaching method. It was a hard road to say the least. Lol. He pretty well got onto gold from day one. I knew the claim pretty well. So he was relegated to what I call mediocre ground, good for a few pennyweight a day for a holiday maker from the wrong Island. He had a habit of dredging like a torpedo. He would get onto a crack running parallel with the river flow, and more or less start tunneling. I am a great believer in working your face, Rather than being a rabbit. Many a time I would reach down , grab his wet suit collar and yank him back. Ouch the look he gave me. But after some gentle persuasion I would get him back on track. There was a time in the early days, when he thought rocks wouldn’t cause a blockage. I being his surface man was in charge of clearing his blockages, frig up down, up down off my arse It never stopped. All I would get was a look from him as he surfaced and a pained look, “I’m blocked” his eyes said. So it was up and down for me all the time. Frig this I thought. This has to stop. So I started my glaring mode, and man I can glare well if the need arises. Well it worked the blockages more or less stopped. He had already had several lessons on how to recognize blockers and the glare did the trick. Anyway after a couple of seasons, I gave him a promotion from " Mellow Puff" to “Cabin Bread” yep I had hardened him up at last. And he was as good as me, well almost lol. Well he is now up the Arrow for his first season in Queenstown. I am aware that the mighty Arrow would make an Iron Miner rich indeed. And when I saw a pic of Cabin Breads first day dredge concentrates, This was confirmed. So feeling sorry for him. I decided to make him a streaming down sluice. So I had a few bits of pvc sheeting from my old days of fabricating various gold saving devices. Plus bits of various matting hanging around. Have always hung onto my professional (velly expensive) plastic welding gun and jig saw. So I set to work. Two days later, the job was done, yep I take lots of breaks. The mats, which I call mix and match are all held down by Velcro. I love that stuff. Sluice is designed to be run by a 12 volt bilge pump, using the two tub system . Gave it a few runs, tweeked the water feed system just a tad. And boy is it a runner. I will let the pics speak for themselves.![IMG_1067|375x500](upload://to2QzrcF9nfHVDvWcWveEP4dcy6
Yep a job well done, so time for a wee skite eh.
Cheers Trev aka “The Mad Hatter”