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Bluchers Gully Gold Puddler No 1

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Off M96 Track, Maryborough VIC 3465

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  • Remains of a gold puddling machine
  • Small dam
  • Bushwalking
The weathered remains of this gold puddling machine stand in the bush of the M96 Track in the Craigie State Forest, one of several puddling machines around Bluchers Gully. A small (seasonal) dam lies across the track from the puddler. 

This is not far from the Bluchers Reef mine site and ruins over on Bluchers Track. 

Puddling machines, or "puddlers" were pioneered on the Victorian goldfields in 1854. This technology was developed as an affordable way of processing gold-bearing clay on a large scale. 

Puddling machines are a very significant development in the history of Victorian gold mining, as they are the only technology or method developed entirely on the Victorian Goldfields.

The characteristic clay earth of the goldfields region posed a problem to the 19th century miners - gold was trapped within the hard lumps of clay and in order to retrieve it, these lumps needed to be effectively broken up. 

A circular trough in the ground, lined with wood or bark, was filled with clay and water. A horse circled the trough and dragged a harrow through the clay mixture, breaking up the lumps and turning it into a runny sludge. The gold released from the clay would sink to the bottom, and the watery clay would be drained off from the top. The residue at the bottom of the trough would then be cleaned up with a pan or cradle to collect the gold.



  • Bushwalking is an excellent way to get outdoors and exploring nature.


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