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- Pan Size: The pan size is important and there are many sizes an There are many sizes and configurations to consider in purchasing. They usually come in 6 inch to 16 inch in width. The larger pans hold more material and therefore allows A larger pan full of material becomes heavy and can become tiresome. A small pan is handy as a finishing pan to complete the final separation of gold from black sand concentrations.
- Type Of Pan Material: Gold pans can be made out plastic, steel, or copper. The most common pans are of plastic which is light and can be made with deep riffles and do not rust. Steel pans are heavier and usually have small riffles if any and are subject to rust. Copper pans are made specially for using with mercury or for presentation pieces.
- Color Of The Pan:Plastic pans are avaiable in several colors. The most common color is the black and green. The black pan makes gold easily visiable but tands to mask black sand. The green pan makes the gold and black sand easily visiable. Other colors are blue, pink, reddish, purple and burgandy.
- Pretreatment Of New Gold Pans: New plastic pans are coated with a mold release material in the manufacturing process that will cause the pan to work ineffectively at first because the mold release compounds acts as a lubricant and causes the water to bead up. It is recommended that a good degreasing detergent be used to throughly clean the pan. A mild steel wool could be used or simply use a hand full of sand rubbing on to the surface of the pan, being careful not to scratch the surface of the pan too much. Steel pans have an oil coating which can be removed by heating the steel pan on a stove top burner or with a propane torch until it is very hot ( the burning oil will create some smoke). If you do not want to use the heading process, use the same process used for the Plastic pans.