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SLUICE PLATES

I am indebted to Mr. F. W. Drake for the following account of sluice plates, which I have never tried, but think the device worth attention:

"An addition has been made to the gold-saving appliances by the placing of what are called in America, 'sluice plates' below the ordinary table. The pulp now flows over an amalgamating surface, 14 ft. long by 4 ft. wide, sloping 1 1/2 in. to the foot, and is then contracted into a copper-plated sluice 15 ft. long by 14 in. wide, having a fall of 1 in. to the foot. Our mill manager (Mr. G. C. Knapp) advocated these sluice plates for a long time before I would consent to a trial. I contended that as we got little or no amalgam from the lower end of our table plates there was no gold going away capable of being recovered by copper plates; and even if it were, narrow sluice plates were a step in the wrong direction. If anything the amalgamating surface should be widened to give the particles of gold a better chance to settle. His argument was that the conditions should be changed; by narrowing the stream and giving it less fall, gold, which was incapable of amalgamation on the wide plates, would be saved. We finally put one in, and it proved so successful that we now have one at the end of each table. The per-centage recovered on the sluice plates, of the total yield, varies, and has been as follows:--

October, 9.1 per cent; November, 6.9 per cent; December, 6.4 per cent;
January, 4.3 per cent; February, 9.3 per cent."




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