Le Trap vs Angus MacKirk First Sluice

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Le Trap vs Angus MacKirk First Sluice

Post by kellphi on Tue Mar 14, 2017 3:19 pm

Hello all,

I am still pretty new to the gold prospecting game but have decided I'm tired of only panning my material. I would like to purchase a sluice that will do well to recover the fine gold we have in Colorado but I'm unsure of whether to go with the AM sluices or the trusty Le Trap. I've heard the Le Trap can be a pain because of how flexible it is. I would appreciate any help with deciding on a good first sluice!

Thanks,
Philip

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Re: Le Trap vs Angus MacKirk First Sluice

Post by Admin on Wed Mar 15, 2017 8:33 am

Philip,

Welcome aboard the Gold Adventures Forum!    

Always great to see and hear from folks....especially ones that are new to the hobby.  Wink

Yep..  Panning is good for 2 things:  1).  Sampling with a BIG pan to locate good material to mine..........and, 2). Cleanups of your cons with a small finishing pan.

Sometimes you're limited to "Hands & Pans" only in spots around the country, but if not...........a sluice box is the way to go.  Having a sluice allows you to harness gravity and the power of water to soften, classify, separate, wash WAY more "dirt" with WAY less effort.

I have been prospecting over 10 years now......have owned a LOT of different sluices..........in size and design.  Some little "backpacking" style sluices up to big Keene A-52s and Wolf Traps and Le Traps and MacKirks...  Some have the older raised Hungarian style riffles, some with screens, matting and such inside............and newer designs with drop riffle designs...

I gotta say that if you want a light weight ( 4 lbs) sluice that really works........especially for fine to super fine gold.......I can't recommend the green plastic Le Trap enough.

It's basically the only sluice I ever use anymore.  All my others now just sit of the garage shelf.  

Go with the Le Trap over any of the Angus MacKirks because the Le Trap is longer.............and length matters in my book.  The Le Trap is 4 feet long, has 3 1/2 feet of drop riffles (19 of them) of different sizes and depths...........and the interior pinches in at the # 4 riffle to create a high pressure zone internally...........then slowly expands out to drop the pressure and allow any tumbling flat flakes or nano specks to find a holding spot in a riffle before it exits the box.

MacKirks are simply way too short, and has way too few riffles by comparison.  Also, here in Colorado I find some of the best fine flood gold trapped in clayish material layers.  The extra length of the Le Trap allows the material to better tumble, bounce and break up going down the box.  Don't worry...  If you get a nugget or picker.........it WILL hold in the Le Trap all day long, below the water flow.....probably in riffle # 4 or # 5.  

Lastly, the Le Traps deal with loads and loads of black sand REAL well...  Once the drop riffles fill up about 1/2 way with heavies & black sand, they will stay 1/2 full all day long, with the proper water flow and box angle.  Gold will always have 1/2 the riffle open to find a holding spot. Older Hungarian designs really struggle with lots of black sand.....they fill up, pack up, don't clean or exchange well and your gold will wash out the back. Then, IF you do a lot of cleanups to overcome this drawback, you have a LOT of heavy black sand cons at the end of the day to pack home, clean up. With the Le Trap I have run literally all day, keeping the drop riffles open and clean and exchanging with my Keene crevice tool, and ended up with just a few cups of super cons to deal with...

Double lastly, a drop riffle sluice like the Le Trap, without riffle bars, cross pins, screens, matting, etc., literally take 15 seconds to cleanup, wash out into a tub.  Love that too.

If you get one, all you have to do is cut out the front wall with a coping saw, as it's dual designed to first be used in building a home made high banker.  To make it into a stream sluice for flow thru, just cut the front wall out.  Also, to prevent it from getting lost in a river or bigger stream, which happened once to me when the water authority released water unexpectedly, I now drill a hole on each side of the back/bottom rail, and tie a 20 foot piece of parachute cord to it and to a stick and set a big rock on the stick.  So, if I ever have my Le Trap "wash away" I can just reel it back in.  I may lose my cons, but never my sluice again!  Wink

If you get one, e-mail me and I'll send you pics of how I cut the front wall out and how I drilled holes/installed a sluice "leash".  Both real easy...

If you look at my many videos on YouTube and my many Trip Reports here on the Forum......in the last 4 years anyways........if I am using a stream sluice, it's always a Le Trap.

HTH

Randy  C-17A  Smile
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Re: Le Trap vs Angus MacKirk First Sluice

Post by kellphi on Wed Mar 15, 2017 9:23 am

Wow! Thank you for the quick, and incredibly in depth, reply! You should be a salesman for Le Trap, because I think you've just sold me on it Wink
Some photos of your setup would be amazing. My email is kellphi@gmail.com. I can't wait to get out there again now that it's warming up out. It is supposed to be in the 80s this weekend in Denver! Thanks again for the reply and good luck with your gold adventures!

Philip

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Re: Le Trap vs Angus MacKirk First Sluice

Post by Admin on Wed Mar 15, 2017 9:41 am

Philip,

Pics of both coming your way via PM.

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Re: Le Trap vs Angus MacKirk First Sluice

Post by Dave on Thu Apr 27, 2017 4:10 pm

Randy, that is an excellent analysis. I have an A52 (now relegated to recirc duties), a Le Trap, Wolf Trap, Angus MacKirk and two Bazooka Gold Trap sluices. If I have enough water to make the fluid trap function on the BGT's I will use them; otherwise I use my Le Trap. No other sluices in my garage ever get used in a stream any more. I need to sell them. Smile

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Re: Le Trap vs Angus MacKirk First Sluice

Post by Admin on Thu Apr 27, 2017 6:43 pm

Dave,

ha. Yep... Me too... I have some "extra" prospecting equipment hanging around my garage and shop...........probably need to move it out some day soon.

Finally getting "caught up" from my month in Kalifornia with family.........would love to go prospecting soon, but the Wx man says temps into the teens tonight, snow into tomorrow. Hmm..... We had flurries on/off all day.

We'll see what happens.

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Re: Le Trap vs Angus MacKirk First Sluice

Post by Dave on Thu Apr 27, 2017 6:46 pm

Yeah, I would love to go prospecting, too, but we are expecting 6-10 inches this weekend. I would guess you are expecting more!

Dvae

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