A lot of the larger metal detector
dealers in the UK stock the Garrett gold pans and panning kits which are
excellent value for money (the kit in particular, as it
includes a book, a suction bottle and several pans etc. and
should be available for a little less than £30) most of the
larger dealers also sell via mail order, so you can buy over
the phone, or in some cases, via the net.
Dredges and Sluices
Dredges and Sluices are a necessity if you
want to maximise your gold finds, you will be able to
process so much more material that you will find a lot more
gold. Sadly, in most places in the UK their use is
prohibited due to the potential environmental impact washing
large amounts of dirt and material into a stream or river
system can have.
Gold Prospecting Abroad
In other countries, where there is a greater
potential for running a small mining operation profitably,
the attitudes toward using heavier duty prospecting
equipment will be very different.
Serious prospectors tend to only use gold
pans to find locations worthy of bringing in the heavier
equipment, panning is a method of sampling rather than a
commercially viable means of gold recovery. That is not to
say that you can't find significant amounts of gold through
panning alone, prospectors in America and Canada certainly
do, but to increase the amount of gold you can recover you
need to increase the amount of material, 'Pay Dirt,'
you can process, and that is where dredges, sluices and even
rock crushers come into play.
If you are new to gold prospecting and
perhaps aren't very familiar with dredges and sluices, pay a
visit to the Keene
Engineering web site. Keene (based in California, USA) have been producing gold
prospecting equipment for 50 years or more and on their web
site you will be able to view images of a wide variety of
prospecting equipment, ranging from gold pans costing less
than $10 to dredge systems costing more than $10,000.
 N.B. Sadly, I don't receive kick backs
or bribes from Keene Engineering for recommending their web
site, but it is probably the best place on the web for
viewing a complete range of prospecting equipment.