Why a Blue Gold Pan is best...

A friend pointed this out to me today on page 49 of the ICMJ magazine.

I have been using blue gold pans for a year or more after first seeing this explanation in Golden Colorado at Gold-N-Detectors Shop. Thank you Bill and Don Finley.

The best color pan to use is the one that works for works for me, and I know why. :-)  

High Contrast Blue for Optimum Gold Visibility

Opposing points on the color wheel have high color contrast. In the diagram, yellow (A) and blue (B) have high contrast.

This is why a blue pan will help you to see gold more easily than all other colors. Black may seem like a good choice, but it will camouflage the black sand that is commonly found with alluvial gold.

Adjacent colors on the color wheel have low  contrast, so orange or green would not be a good choice of color for gold visibility.

Low contrast combinations
Green and yellow are from the light half of the wheel and do not reveal gold nuggets easily.

High contrast combinations
Red and blue are both ‘dark’ colors, giving maximum contrast to make gold nuggets highly visible.

1 comment

  • In addition to high contrast or opposing points on a color wheel, do not overlook the color value – how light or dark the opposing color appears. Adding some black pigment to the green will deepen its contrast to the gold, a neutral color value. Adding white pigment to blue will lessen its contrast to the same gold. So tint – adding black – or tone – adding white, changes a base color’s contrast with it’s opposite on a color wheel or a neutral such as gold or silver. So a dark green pan should outperform a light blue one.

    And then there is the issue of individual color perception….!

    Larry Mitchell on

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