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Panning animation.

Panning is a method to acquire metal ore nuggets from sand and gravel. This is especially useful early in the game, as it offers a safe and reliable alternative to scavenging the surface for stray nuggets, and can also yield other helpful resources.


Players may pan gravel, sand or bony soil blocks. Gravel and sand can be found on the surface, while bony soil is found around or under ruins. Each block can be panned eight times. Different types of blocks may result in slightly different drops. Bony soil in particular uses a different drop table, meaning that panning bony soil may give players items that they cannot get from panning gravel or soil. Panning bony soil may drop very helpful items for early-game players.

Note: Even though Muddy Gravel has the word "gravel" in its name, it cannot be panned.

Pan-wooden.png The primary tool used in panning is the wooden pan. This is created by crafting one log with a knife in the crafting grid.

Oak log

Flint knife

Wooden Pan


In order to pan a block, players must perform the following steps:

  1. Place the pan in the hotbar and equip it in the active hand.
  2. Place the block to be panned (the "target block") on dry land, not touching water.
  3. Fill the pan while aiming the crosshairs at the target block.
  4. Stand in water.
  5. Wash the pan while standing in water and wait until the pan is empty.

Any items recovered from the process will transfer to the player's hotbar or inventory. Items that do not fit in the player's inventory will drop to the ground at the player's feet.

During the entire panning process, players can remain standing in water. This is the most efficient setup, since the target blocks can just be placed at the edge of the water. Partially-panned blocks that are touching water will be instantly destroyed, so players should avoid panning blocks that are directly touching water.


Panning produces several types of useful small items, as well as rarer yields such as decorative headgear and lore items. It can also provide parts for early weapons.

Common resource drops from panning include loose stones (corresponding to the local rock layer), flint, ore nuggets for copper, sphalerite, cassiterite and gold, quartz chunks (clear or regular) and blue clay.

Common items from panning include flint and copper arrowheads or spearheads, metal scraps (which can be used to create scrap weapon kits), and rusty gears.

Additionally, panning may give players lore items such as books, or decorative clothing such as diadems and necklaces. These can be sold to traders for more rusty gears.

In addition to all of the following, panning bony soil can also give bones, silver nuggets, and candles. More rarely, panning bony soil can also give components for armor such as tin bronze or copper chain and lamellae.

Panning drops

These drops are listed in rough order of probability, with the most common drops at the top and the rarest drops at the bottom.

Gravel or sand

Bony soil

Video Tutorials

This panning tutorial was made for version 1.13, but is still relevant for version 1.17.

Ores, metals and minerals
Guides Ore Deposits Metals
Useful metals Copper Iron Meteoric iron Gold Silver Lead Tin Zinc Bismuth Titanium (Ilmenite)
Useful alloys Bronze (Tin bronze, bismuth bronze, black bronze) • Steel Brass Solder (Lead solder, Silver solder) • Molybdochalkos
Minerals Alum Borax Cinnabar Coal Halite (Salt) Lapis lazuli Quartz Saltpeter Sulfur Sylvite (Potash)
Tools Pickaxe Hammer Prospecting Pick Forge Quern Anvil Bloomery Helve hammer Pulverizer
Other Gemstones
Related mechanics Panning Mining Casting Smithing Steel making

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