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All the bad weather, snow and to many things I need to take care of no chance to get away for a trip to gold country, been watching tons of YouTube gold related videos on prospecting related stuff and the occasional Jeep roll over compilation just to scare me into not doing that stuff with my Jeep on the gold trail?. Lots of ideas on the web for idle hands to foolishly venture, not that I don’t have anything to occupy my time, but a little sucking device somehow seemed like a good idea, so off I go... I’ve been building my little Jeep friendly recirculating sluice and thought I would try making a nozzle for use with the pump I already own, just a few pipe fittings and a little part here and there. I already have a Keene high banker setup and 90gpm Honda pump I can’t use in California, but something small for Jeep travel where it’s ok might come in handy, so I build the first one paying attention to everything I can think of to reduce friction and any head pressure and the little bilge pump was inadequate for the task.  


searching the web for 12v pumps it’s hard to find anything that produces both volume and pressure at a reasonable price, the rule 4000 utility pump was the most powerful at 66gpm open flow and max lift of approx 30’ with over half its rated volume at 15’, but at a cost of 20amp hrs power consumption, they even made a two stage model rated at 134gpm same rated lift. Only problem the rule evacuator pump line are discontinued and I could only find one seller in the US that still had 3 in stock, every one else was out and the product is no longer listed one the manufacturers web site. I passed on the rule4000 and found a reasonable priced 1000 gph utility pump with a rated max lift of 7m out of Korea and ordered one, it won’t arrive until sometime in April I find out so we’ll see but I suspect it was a waste.


I should have stopped reading about water pumps, but didn’t and found another 12v pump that looked better with more volume than my bilge pump or the Korean pump and with a rated max lift of 7m burning only 13amp hr from my battery and ordered it.


superior pump came today and I outfitted my nozzle with the new pump along with a water proof power switch and cigarette lighter socket power cord, even with the power of this pump (1/4hp) the suction is inhibited by the discharge restriction and lift enough to make it not quite just enough suction to be practical, however pumping directly into a container without the lift it will suck dirt and gravel more than enough to be worth trying out for bedrock cracks. Everything but the battery weighs 8# total out of the water and in the water it’s slightly negative buoyancy keeps it on the bottom without feeling heavy it also feels fairly well balanced.


Before the superior pump arrived eBay kept nagging me about the rule4000 and I still couldn’t find a replacement for this now discontinued pump, so with only the 3 left I figured it was only a couple hundred and I’d might regret it more later if I passed cause I’m on a mission now and pulled the trigger on the rule pump, estimate it arrives on Friday. At over twice the power and capacity of the superior 12v pump it should pump material into my little highbanker if I get a larger battery.


Anyway more to come...


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Bathtub test of the two pumps in clean water picking up small bits of lead solder and air rifle pellets using the same suction nozzle. Very little difference between the two tests probable the 1 1/14 discharge is at capacity with the smaller pump running at similar discharge pressure and this is a positive for my test given the smaller pump costs less than half the money and uses 13amps vs 20amps per hour to run. I think it should work even better with the nozzle tip directed into a bedrock crack, Next I’ll take it out to a local creek and see if it works as well sucking dirt and rocks.

Test with the Rule 4000gph utility pump


test with the superior 1700gph 13amp utility pumpTest with Rule 4000gph 20 amp utility pump



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A new jet nozzle just a bit larger diameter than the last one to better accomidate the bigger Rule 20amp pump I used a 4 to 1 ratio for the jet, the abs is 2” x 1 1/2” fitted with a 1/2” jet made from a Home Depot fuel funnel that is set in 2” abs held in place with automotive auto body filler. The nozzle is 2” straight through the discharge hose with the pick-up nozzle diameter of 1 1/2”. While conducting the time test I held a large gold pan of rocks and gravel under the nozzle and was able to clear the pan in about 10 seconds.



I also picked up from Amazon a little battery status meter for $15 just to see how the battery holds up during use and ran 2 tests one with the first smaller nozzle and 13 amp hr pump and a second similar test with the larger nozzle and Rule 20 amp utility pump. I was able to get an hour and 15 minutes out of the 13 amp pump, strangely I got an hour and 35 minutes out of the Rule 20 amp pump very contrary to what I would have thought it would turn out. Both these tests were done using the new JNC950 jump starter that I believe is rated at 35 amp hrs and taken from full charge at around 13v down to 12.06v at a 50% discharge capacity.

time test 13 amp hr pump


Time test 20 amp hr pump


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Hmmm, I hate to admit defeat but in case anyone else is headed down this rabbit hole I thought I post my wrap on this project.

I’ve tried just about everything  I have access to within reason to make a truly useful 12v powered suction nozzle worth the trouble of dragging out into the gold fields and I just can’t get there, close but not really practical. Lift above the water level and bends in the hose line just kill performance and this is pretty much true with every example on YouTube I’ve seen as I followed dozens of other builds.

 I even built an underwater sluice set-up and the suction into it was... adiquate, so that I could pump gravel, rocks and lead pellets into it and the collection worked perfectly fine, but adiquate suction really needed to be stronger before I’d waste much time using it for real. 

In total I built 4 different pvc nozzle designs 2 were regular jet nozzles, a 1” discharge and 1 1/2” discharge and two infinity jet nozzles a 1” discharge and a 2” discharge. The last infinity nozzle worked the best and is the largest of the bunch and probably one I’ll keep and test with my little Honda powered 90 gpm gas pump. The infinity jet was bit more trouble to make finding parts at Home Depot That will work is the challenge, I used a number of adaptors and fittings cut and drilled out to make the last infinity nozzle tuneable to the pump pressure and volume. This nozzle has a 1 1/2” intake that discharges into a 2” outlet pipe the nozzle is tuneable from about a 1/16 gap out to infinity (2”) with a sweet spot around a 1/8” gap.providing the best performance with the 12v pumps. 

Id thought 30 years of moving water around and all the calculations I had to learn that go with it would have helped, but obviously it’s a lot easier when everything is powered bu a 1500 gpm American la France pumper on one end of the hose line instead of a little electric pump trying to overcome the laws of physics. So, anything I missed or something you can see in my last design I can improve on? 

This is my last build and I think it should work well powered by the Honda pump and have no trouble feeding into my little floating highbanker set-up?

infinity jet.


View of jet assembly.


View looking down the 2” discharged at the nozzle alignment.


Nozzle discharge gap in relation to the 2” ABS discharge tube.



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Clark I'd try to help you but I don't even understand how bicycle pump works lol 


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2 hours ago, Steve Herschbach said:

I am sorry it did not work out but there are always lessons learned. In my case I learned to stick with factory manufactured nozzles and jets.

Thanks Steve, Actually I had fun doing it, learned a little and came up with a few things new to play with this summer so all was not a loss. I figured the most help I could give someone else headed down the same road was to post my mistakes and possibly save em a buck or two?.

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7 hours ago, strick said:

Clark I'd try to help you but I don't even understand how bicycle pump works lol 


That’s funny ?, your sense of humor eases my pain, for the record anytime you feel like teaching me anything you don’t know I’m all ears??.

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I built one that works a bit better... ...DC pumps in series do almost as well as multistage pumps.  Mine is fed by a 1000 gph bilge pump into two livewell aeration pumps... ...since those have threaded inlet pipes for bulkhead penetrations, it was pretty easy to daisy-chain the three together...


I wound up with mine feeding a powerjet/jet log... ...and I needed to stick with just a nail through the suction tip.  The expansion of a half inch diameter at the discharge of the nozzle slowed stuff down enough that it wasn't staying in suspension.


Hope this helps,


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Jarod, thanks and what size intake and discharge did you use and did you use a 4 to 1 for the jet diameter. I considered putting pumps in series and using a bilge pump with a live well pump like you suggested but instead trusted the utility pumps with a rated useful lift 3 times that of the bilge pump would be better unfortunately I didn’t get that performance difference. 3 1000gph pumps I’m guessing is someplace around 12amp hrs drain of your batteries? That’s another place I should have gotten more from my pumps the 1/4hp 12v pump pulls 13amps and the supposed big pump I paid $225 for is I suspect a Chinese knock off because it’s rated to draw 20amps but instead put less drain on my battery that the 13amp pump? Unless the difference is because the rule brand (?) is really somehow more efficient? Cool your set-up is working good with two smaller pumps rumnning like that, I thought about running both my big pumps in series but with my current battery I would be lucky to get 45 minutes run time and not worth the trouble dragging everything around. I’ve need to test my nozzle on the gas pump and see if it’s any good in the first place I guess? What are you feeding material into?


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