Older Manual Keene Backpack Drywasher

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I've got the chance to get one of the older Keene backpack style drywashers, the "pull the string" kind. Anyone have any experience or know about these? I was also wondering how easy it would be to convert this to 12v operation??

Thanks in advance.

HH, ya'll!


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Better to get a new style drywasher. whatever weight or other you would save, would be offset by your battery, pick, shovel and accessories that you would also have to pack in to the site.

Get a decent gold buddy or like drywasher.

Other things you need to look at:

good railroad pick


decent shovels

particle masks (3m 8210 or 8211)

good boots

gas and oil

tool kit

cooler with water and food

gloves and hat.


an extra body

a rototiller

a gas powered vacuum cleaner

lanterns and light stands

Desert Fox portable gold screw

bengay (watch out! Johnny Cash said the words to the song Ring of Fire, came to the author arising out of an incident when he reached for the vaseline, and got the bengay instead. it was dark...)

sweat band.

4x4, spare and farm jack

another cooler with beer

mouth muzzle so the neighbors won't hear you cussin something out

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Dang, whats4supper, it sounds like I'd be a lot better off just sticking with my Eureka Gold and forget any of the drywasher stuff! LOLOL

I've got a pretty good start on most of the items you mentioned, though. Nice to see I'm on the right track.

HH, ya'll!



I didn't win the auction for the drywasher, so it don't matter anyway, now. :(

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The stuff that whatsforsupper mentioned is great to have along, but not all of it is necessary for a short testing trip with a puffer. The pull string Keene is O.K., but I like lighter/smaller/wooden models better for testing. However, the Keene can be converted to 12V operation without too much difficulity if you are handy, and that makes a real good DW for short trips (not really a backpack unit). Anyone interested in drywashing should check out this page off my website and read my story "drywasher discourse" found here: http://www.russford.com/wst_page4.html

......... russford

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right, I agree with Russford and all. it is a lot of work, but the rewards are somewhat better where the gold is smaller, or just simply buried where no detector can easily discover it from the surface.

I didn't add to the list that I also take my GB2 along. The big advantage with a MineLab is that it can detect gold that most other detectors either miss, due to depth or ground obstacles.

I am not, definitely not, knocking the MD-only bunch. I drywash because it's great exercise, drains off stress and ill-will arising out of my urban-making-a-living challenges, is a perfect excuse to work towards a goal, and actualy motivates me to make a better effort. Beside I can't hear for s---.

If I am going to go to all the effort just to get the thing setup, I am going to make a better effort to get some use out of it. While just detecting, sometimes I won't even get out of the truck, or wave the wand a few times, and bark off some excuse. Those that get the nuggets the easier metal detector way have my admiration, and certainly use their enhanced motivation to scan the monotonous horizons.

Every body has their niche. Just because some one works a diiferent way or for different reasons, is certainly no reason for me to judge or put them down. the best bet is to keep an open mind, go with the flow and then figure out a potential hunch to follow up on. Try someone else way and if it works out better adopt it, If not, go back to the same old tried and true.

As I said before, I really do sincerely hope that everyone on this site finds their rainbow.

We all have enough clouds in the world, and other reasons for feeling as if you were some outcast or loser; no one is immune from discouragement. And everyone deserves a break or a win, as it are those that keep everything else moving along, and gives some reason to climb the next hill.

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