May 20, 2017

Production of Japanese traditional gold pan "Yuri-ita"


There is a traditional gold pan "Yuri-ita" in Japan.
Even now, the tool is lent out for the education of tourists and children in Usotan-nai gold panning park (Hokkaido) and Rekifune-river (Hokkaido) in order to convey ancient techniques.
Besides the Yuri-ita, there were Yuri-hachi(no riffle flat-pan) and Yuri-bon(tray), but they are only seen in museums.
Yuri-ita is not commercially available, but each one is making it. There are no standard dimensions, making it by each person's experience and idea. Approximate dimensions are shown below.



1.Dimensions of Yuri-ita
(1) Length: 600 to 650mm
   I think that it will be influencd by the shoulder width of the person using it. Since the length is less than 500 mm in the World Gold Panning Championships, it must be cut.
(2) Width: 300 to 350 mm
 If it is wide, we can handle a lot of sand, but it becomes difficult to discharge sand.
(3) Depth of curved part: 20 to 30 mm
   It is thought that shallow one is easier to escape gold, but the processing speed is fast.
On the other hand, when it is deep, the treatment action must be increased and the gold is easily escaped.
(4) Plate thickness: around 15 mm
   It gets lighter as it becomes thinner, but it is in balance with the strength of the wood.
(5) Height of edge frame: 3 to 5 mm
   Several riffles with height are attached in the plastic gold pan, but there is one riffle at the edge in a Yuri-ita.
An ordinary person thinks that if the height of the riffle is high, the recovery rate of gold will increase, but removal of sand will be delayed. It is good to carefully operate thinking that it is panning (board-ing) with a board.
(6) Width of head part:
   It is a part to hold, width and height should be decided by the size of each hand.
(7) Open part:
   One side of the Yuri-ita is open. It is for separating gold and sand at the final stage of processing.

2. How to make a Yuri-ita
   I tried making the Yuri-ita for the first time. The old man was made only with saw and chisel, but it takes time to work, so I used various power tools.
(1) Types of wood
   The material of the Yuri-ita is Willow, Katsura, Horse chestnut etc.
It is preferable to use a straight grain of wood dried for more than 2 years.
As it is used in the water, water resistance and corrosion resistance of the wood are important.
If broad wood is not available, there is a method of bonding with adhesive. I used  Japanese cypress that are readily available in Japan recently.
(2) Processing
   If you use a large machine, you can easily carve Yuri-ita, but ordinary people have to carve with small tools for a long time. Since there is no standard production method, so please try various methods for every one.
(3) Fillers and coatings
   Water resistant two-part epoxy is used for repairing scratches.
Painting are done only on the outer surface, the inner surface is not painted so that the gold is easy to stop.
It is difficult to find gold on the same color wood, so it is colored with black ink (Sumi). If you can’t get Sumi, I think it is good to polish with paper after applying dark stain
(4) Production point
   The points of the Yuri-ita structure are the height of the edge frame and the depth of curved part.
If the edge frame is high and the curved port is deep,beginners like me tend to think that the recovery rate of gold will be higher
However, the discharge of sand is important in separating gold and sand.
The theory of recovery with the Yuri-ita is basically the same as plastic gold pan.

3. How to operate the Yuri-ita
   Since it is difficult to write the operation method of the Yuri-ita in sentences, please refer to You Tube. The basic theory of the Yuri-ita seems to be the same as in the case of plastic gold pan.
(1) Stand in the position to see the downstream direction.
(2) Stir the sand and remove large stones. When holding the head part of the Yuri-ita, if you hold before the center line,the operability improves .
(3) Move the Yuri-ita right and left or seesaw type to generate fluidization phenomenon and settle the gold.
(4) Tilt the Yuri-ita slightly toward you and gently put water and remove the upper sand to the downstream side.
(5) Repeat the operations (3) and (4) until the sand reaches a small amount.
(6) Collect gold and sand on the head part side.
(7) Rotate 90 degrees and set the head part to the side of your body, rinse slowly with water and let sand flow.
(8) When only sand iron containing gold is obtained, tap the head part and move only gold to the upper side.
(9) Push the gold with a dry finger and collect it in a bottle or red cloth.








May 6, 2017

Stone Museum “Hakuseki-kan”/Japan


The Hakuseki-kan is a museum of minerals and jewels.

There is a pyramid made with locally produced 5,500 tons of granite. It is reproduced in 1/10 the size of the pyramid of King Khufu, and the underground maze is spreading. You can see rare exhibits such as natural crystals, diamonds, fossils, stone of the pyramid in Egypt, rock of Everest.

The popular corner in the museum is the “jewelry search”. There are 30 types of precious stones and jewels in the sand of the pool, and you can get them by digging with a bowl or hand.

Also, you can experience fossil digging and gold panning.

 
Address:Hirukawa Nakatsugawa-shi Gifu-ken

URL of Hakuseki-kan
http://www.hakusekikan.co.jp/




May 2, 2017

Gold Panning Locations in UK and Ireland


The World Gold Panning Championships 2017 will be held in Moffat, Scotland. I am hesitating to go because it is far from Japan.

Cost performance is bad only by participation in the championships, so I would like to dig gold in the actual river.

Although it is not a recent topic, my friend says that he wants to search “Nessie” of the Loch Ness with an infrared detector at night. Another friend does not interested in the sightseeing spot, but I would like to see World Heritage Site of Edinburgh.

I searched the gold panning locations in UK on the Internet and displayed them on this figure.

We are the first visit to Scotland, we do not know the gold places, rules and the fee. Is there anyone who can guide us?




1.  Scotland


① Moffat(the place of the World Gold Panning Championships 2017)

Kildonan Burn, HelmsdaleThe Sutherland Goldfield

Angus Glens

Crom Alt Burn, Tyndrum

Calliacher BurnMoness River

Perthshire Hillsnear The Ochil Hills

The Ochil Hills(near Glendevon)

The Lammermuir Hills

Mennock Water, Saquhar

Leadhills-Wanlockhead

The Glengaber Burn(river Megget)

 
2. England

North Pennies, Nenthead, River Swale

The Lake District, Blencathra Mountain

Yorkshire dales

Forest of Dean

Hopes Nose, Torguay, Devon

⑰ Corn wall

 
3. Wales

Parys Mountain, Anglesey

Dolgellau, Snowdonia

Dollacothi, pumpsaint

Llanfymach, Pembrokeshire

 
4. Northern Ireland

Sperrin Mountain

 
5. Ireland

Wicklow


April 10, 2017

Satsuma Kinzangura/Japan


This place is the former site of Kushikino Mine. This mine has a history of over 300 years and produced more than 50 tons of gold until the shutdown in 1994. Now the project of precious metal recycling is done.
Because the temperature of the tunnel is constant throughout the year,” Satsuma Kinzangura” uses some galleries to store and cultivate Shochu. You can ride the truck and visit the reservoir of Shochu, but you can’t experience gold panning.

Satsuma Shochu” is one of the origin-designated brands based on the WHO like "Bordeaux wine" and "Scotch whiskey".

Address: Noshita Ichikikushikino-shi Kagoshima-ken

Homepage of Satuma Kinzangura
http://www.hamadasyuzou.co.jp/kinzan/facilities/access.html




April 7, 2017

Esashi-Fujiwara Heritage Park/Japan


The historical park "Esashi-Fujiwara Heritage Park" is located near World Cultural Heritage “Hiraizumi”.
It is a theme park that you can experience the history of Tohoku from ancient times to the middle ages.
In the garden of about 20 hectares, there are more than 120 buildings based on historical research. It has been used as the location for many TV dramas and movies.

Various events are taking place and the gold panning experience is held during the summer festival.


Address: Iwayado Esashi-ku Oshu-shi Iwate-ken

Homepage of Esashi-Fujiwara Heritage Park
http://www.fujiwaranosato.com/images/panf/fujiwaranosato01.pdf



April 4, 2017

Tachiyazawa-river/Japan


There was a village of gold miner near the Tachiyazawa-river in the old age. There is no one who makes living by gold digging now, but there are people who dig gold as an individual hobby.

The event” Get rich quick Class” is held once a year.
The instructor will explain the history of gold digging and Japanese tools. After the lecture, you will receive guidance on gold panning in Tachiyazawa-river.


Address: Syounai-machi Higashitagawa-gun Yamagata-ken

Homepage of Tachiyazawa-river
http://blog.goo.ne.jp/ryuiki/e/6a7ff59c27a532fe74cacc5bed85e3c1


March 31, 2017

Hosokura Mine-park/Japan


Hosokura mine was a leading mining company of lead and zinc in Japan, it has a history of 1200 years. This mine closed down in 1987 and now it is a theme park using tunnels. The work scenery has been faithfully reproduced in the tunnel. Cultural assets such as ancient documents are displayed in the exhibition room. You can experience gold panning in the pool.

Address: Nangou Uguisuzawa Kirihara-shi Miyagi-ken

Homepage of  Hosokura Mine-park
https://www.kuriharacity.jp/index.cfm/12,389,63,167,html




March 27, 2017

Taio Gold Mine/Japan


Gold ore was discovered in 1894. It was the largest gold mine in the Orient about 80 years until the closed mountain in 1972.
The total length of the tunnel was 110 km, and five shafts reaching 500 m underground were dug.
In 1983 it revived as "Underground Museum Taio Gold Mine”.

Also, you can enjoy gold panning in pool near the entrance.
The “Kyusyu Gold Panning Championship” is held once a year

 
Address:Gouse Nakatue-mura Hita-shi Ooita-ken

Homepage of Taio Gold Mine
http://taiokinzan.jp/kinzan.html
http://taiokinzan.jp/gold.html









March 22, 2017

Mikawa Mu-valley/Japan


This place is the tungsten mine closed in 1993. This mine has been reborn as the "Underground Kingdom Mikawa Mu-valley".
It is a unique adventure type theme park that explored 1 km of the tunnel as the stage.
The theme of this park is mysterious ancient civilization "Mu Continent".You can do gold panning experience in the pool and the pond.



Address:Nekasa Mikawa-machi Yamaguchi-ken

Homepage of Mikawa Mu-Valley
http://www.muvalley.com/




March 16, 2017

Maintopia Besshi/Japan


Besshi Copper Mine was discovered in 1690, it produced 700 thousand tons in about 280 years until 1973 and contributed to Japan's trade and modernization.
The Sumitomo family managed this mine and the copper related business became the cornerstone of the huge chaebol in Japan.


Maintopia Besshi is a theme park which used old facilities of Besshi Copper Mine. Mine tourism and gold panning in the pool can be done. Some of the gold flakes has stamp of raccoon, if you can collect 3 pieces, you will exchange for 5 g gold bar.

Address:Tachikawa Niihama-shi Ehime-ken Japan

Homepage of Minetopia Besshi
http://besshi.com/


March 10, 2017

Ikuno Silver Mine/Japan

This place is Silver Mine. It is said that the first digging was done in 1542.It is one of the leading silver mines in Japan and produced 1,700 tons of silver by the close of the mountain in 1973.
Currently, it is maintained as "Historic site of Ikuno Silver Mine". We can see tunnels and the mining museum.
This is not a gold mine, but you can wash sand in pan to separate out (gold, silver and tin) in the pool.

Address: Kono Ikuno-cho Asago-shi Hyogo-ken

Homepage of Ikuno Silver Mine
http://www.ikuno-ginzan.co.jp/



March 5, 2017

Toi Gold Mine/Japan


Toi Gold Mine was dug by about 1370, the first Golden Age was around 1600, the second Golden Age was around 1900, and closed in 1965. Estimated output amount is 40 t of gold, 400 t of silver.
After that, the inside of the tunnel was opened to the general tourists, and you can experience gold panning in the pool.
Also in 2005, 250 kg of gold bar were exhibited and that was registered in Guinness Book.

The gold panning competition is held once a year. The competition takes place in a classified water tank, competing for the number of gold flakes taken within the time limit.
This has not been adopted in the World Gold Panning Championship.The winner can get 5 g of gold nugget.



Address:Toi Izu-shi Shizuoka-ken Japan

Homepage of Toi Gold Mine
http://www.toikinzan.com/












February 28, 2017

Yu-no-oku museum of Gold Mining History/Japan


Yu-no-oku Museum is in the “Shimobe Hot Spring” town.
This hot spring is said to be a secret place of the famous military commander “Shingen Takeda” in the 1500's.
In the nearby mountain there is gold mine developed by him and trace of mining is seen.
There are various kinds of exhibits at the museum and you can  enjoy gold panning in the pool.
The “Gold Mine Museum Goldpanning Championship” is held once a year for two days.
This championship is the largest number of participants in Japan. The first day is an ordinary person, on the second day school competition which is a rare program in the world.
Also, lovers of gold digging gather at this place on holidays.

 
Address:Minobu-tyo Minamikuma-gun Yamanashi-ken

Homepage of Yu-no-oku museum of Gold Mining History
https://www.town.minobu.lg.jp/kinzan/







February 24, 2017

Oppara Dream Union/Japan


Oppara Dream Union manages camping site and nature experience events near the road station "Pascal Kiyomi".
It is in the mountainous area of the western side from Takayama-city where old Japanese streets remain.
There was a small gold mine nearby. You can experience gold panning in the pool at the Nature Experience Center and you can receive guidance on mineral collection in the river.

The “Hida-takayama Gold Panning Championship” is held once a year.


Address: Oppara Kiyomi-tyo Takayama-city Gifu-ken

Homepage of Oppara Dream Association
http://hidayume.com/

Homepage of road station ‘Pasukaru Kiyomi’
http://pascalkiyomi.jp/










Old townscape of Takayama-city
 
  These are festival cars ’Yatai’ used at the Takayama Festival


Venue for gold panning competition

February 20, 2017

Sado Nishimikawa Gold Park/Japan


This facility is located in Sado Island, and it is necessary to cross from Niigata-city by ferry.
Placer gold was discovered in this area around 1100, and a large amount of gold dug in the 1600s. In this facility, you can experience gold panning in the pool.

Home page of Sado Nishimikawa Gold Park
http://www.e-sadonet.tv/~goldpark/

Sado-city tourist information site
https://www.visitsado.com/spot/detail0009/




February 17, 2017

Sado Gold Mine/Japan


The mine was developed around 1600 and closed in 1989. This is the largest gold and silver mine in Japan, and this mine produced about 80 tons of gold and 2,300 tons of silver during the 400 years.
There is a tour around historic sites such as tunnels.



Address: Shimoaikawa Sado-shi Niigata-ken Japan

Homepage of Sado Gold Mine






February 13, 2017

Gold Park Narumi/Japan


This Narumi Gold Mine was discovered in the year 802, and it produced 1/3 of the total output in Japan around 1600.
It closed down in 1945. The “Gold Park Narumi” was maintained in this place.
We can tour the mine and take gold panning in the pool.
This theme park hand down the history of mining to future generations.


Address: Takane Murakami-shi Niigata-ken

Homepage of Murakami City
http://www.city.murakami.lg.jp/site/kanko/narumikinzan.html









February 10, 2017

Tenpyou Romankan/japan


This is the first place where gold was discovered in Japan in 749.It was presented to the Emperor and used for plating Todaiji Great Buddha. Current appearance of Great Buddha is bronze color, but at the time of construction, it was plated by the gold amalgam method.
Many goods related to gold  are displayed in Tenpyou Romankan.
Also, you can experience gold panning in the pool. Even now, placer gold can be collected around this area, but mining is prohibited in the historic site area.
You can buy goods related to gold at the shop.

Address:Ogonyama Wakuya-tyo Tooda-gun Miyagi-ken

Homepage of Tenpei Roman Palace
http://www.tenpyou.jp/








Yookan(sweet jelly made from bean jam) with gold leaf

February 6, 2017

Osarizawa Mine/Japan


Osarizawa mine is a copper mine, it was discovered around 700 and started full-scale since 1600 and closed in 1978.
"Historic Site of Ozorasawa Mine" was built on the former site.
You can observe industrial sites such as mining and refining fields.

In the old days, gold digging was done in this nearby river. You can experience gold panning in the pool at the site of this mine.

Address: Shishikozawa Osarizawa Kazuno-shi Akita-ken

The homepage of this mine
http://www.osarizawa.jp/



February 3, 2017

Rekifune-river Gold Mining Experience/japan



Since around 1635, "beach gold" was dug in the coast of Rekifune River, and around 1900 the mining of "river gold" in the Rekifune River reached its peak.
The place where we can dig placer gold is the Rekifune River in front of Kamuikotan Park, and there are volunteer managers.
Individuals can borrow Japanese tools ”Yuriita” and “Catcha” at the roadside station Cosmol Taiki.
When group wants instructor, reservation to Taiki Town Sightseeing Association  is necessary.




Address: [Kamuikotan park] aza-Oda Taiki-tyo Hiroo-gun Hokkaido
http://www.town.taiki.hokkaido.jp/soshiki/kikaku/shoko/camp.html

Roadside station”Kosumoru Taiki”
http://www.hokkaido-michinoeki.jp/michinoeki/2483/

Taiki Town Sightseeing Association
http://www.town.taiki.hokkaido.jp/soshiki/kikaku/shoko/gold_rush.html