The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 12, Issue 8 (November 1, 1937)
This consists of a bottom usually two and a-half feet by four feet. The two sides are about eight inches in height. The front is left open, while a board at the back, about six inches in height, forms the third side. Thus there is a bottom, two sides, a third side being only half (approximately) the height of the other two, the fourth side being open. There is no top. On the floor of the box is placed sacking, and on this, cocoanut matting. Perforated iron plates are next laid on, their edges resting on ledges on the sides. Thus there is a clearance between the plates and the mats.
The box is now ready for work. This is used either for shovelling or sluicing.
Let us now find a spot, and set in our box.
Shovelling is done where the ground is fairly level. To find a suitable spot, we must take some prospects and decide whether they are sufficiently promising. We proceed to a likely spot (all miners are able to pick out likely spots). Most likely we shall be in the river-bed, or in a fairly wide gully. Knowledge of the behaviour of gold will cause us to take a prospect just where the bed widens, having come through a narrower part, or at the edge of the swifter part.