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Edwardakis

Equinox 600 On Play Grounds

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Today I visited my second playground Since getting the NOX 600.  I’m getting comfortable with the machine. After reading quite a bit of the Minelab Essentials gaining new knowledge about the machine I was excited to jump back out today. I decided to hit a playground with the 1 hour that I had. This is the second play ground I have hit as of recently, both were similar, had the wood chips everywhere.

The first time, it was extremely difficult! This second time has been just as difficult even after all the new tips I’ve learned.  What happened is there were so many weak and choppy signals, practically every where. I assume this is due to trash being littered everywhere since you know, kids are there a lot and kids tend to litter more often.  It was strange that I checked half of the playground in an hour and I got not 1 good signal though.

 

I was on Park 2 since assuming it’s more dense with trash and I wanted to be stronger for gold jewelry, Sensitivity had to be at about 16 due to bad EMI. I made sure to auto balance and ground balance.  Is there anything else I should have done to help myself? The signals I would get would be extremely weak or it sounded as if there were targets everywhere so when I’d find one that I thought was decent I would try to pinpoint the target however when I was in pinpoint mode, it would give me 100% strong signals on an half of a sweep like 2 feet long. This made pin pointing very difficult so I wasn’t sure if it was falsing or if this is just the nature of wood chipped playgrounds.  This happened in my first playground a couple weeks ago as well. I just chalked it up as a very trashy area.

also I would lose signals after finding them. A 13 4” down would pop up for a moment then I am no longer finding that signal and instead am finding a 26 2” deep, nearby, and then that would be gone and nothing appears which was a bit confusing. This is an example of what has happened non stop with different target IDs and depths fairly consistently.

i assume this is what it’s like to run into a difficult spot for newbs such as myself so I wanted to ask, is this a common occurrence for a playground? Are they more difficult due to extremely tough signals?

 

Are there any tips for detecting in playgrounds that I may find useful and others that are having the same trouble?

Also I’m extremely sorry if there is another topic that covers the information that I’m asking for.

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I've had the same problem before, it was little bits of tin foil all through the playground from chocolate packaging and bubble gum and so on.  I just had to notch out up to about 7 on the VDI's, that got rid of most of the annoying iffy little signals for me and I wasn't too worried about missing too much below 7... sure some fine gold will be there but most will be over 7 and it was all I could do to detect the area without going insane.

The Equinox is very sensitive to small targets, which is why it's so good for gold prospecting, even in Park 1 it can find tiny gold nuggets. 

You could even drop back to single frequency and see if it helps with the EMI / Signals, try 5 first as it will be less sensitive to small stuff like bits of foil but maybe worse for EMI so maybe 10 will be best but it's worth trying them all.

I'd be in Park 1 in that situation too, it will find jewellery no problems if it's there.  Some more experienced Playground hunters / Nox users may have more and better advice for you.

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I have found if you get within 2 feet of the swings, slides or their frames it will give false signals, so I steer clear of them as much as possible. When going around the swings I hold the chains away from where I have the detector and it seems to do just fine.

Some of the hardware that they use to support the playground equipment may not always be in the area you think it is, as the legs are always further than you think.

Also I turn the sensitivity down to about 15 and my 800 gives good targets, whether it be trash or coin it is still a constant target.

Valen

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On 7/19/2019 at 10:02 PM, Lacky said:

Valen, here's a suggestion for practicing.  Go to playgrounds,  bark, rubber, sand, doesn't matter. Then detect it, but everytime you get a signal run the pinpoint over the surface. If the pin pointer doesn't detect it skip it and move on. That way you are just looking for shallow solid targets, its quick,  no spending 10 min trying to dig one target, no frustration,  and lots of different targets in a short period. It's great initial practice. I did it last night after my river hunt was a washout. 

It took me 2 holes to realize the bark was 8 inches deep, then a layer of weed barrier, and I was detecting targets under the weed barrier (wasn't about to wreck that).  So I just switched to surface hunting (well, within 2 or 3 inches of surface), knocked down the sensitivity to 14 so I didn't hear most of the deep targets, and found some coins, an ear ring back, some tiny charm pieces,  foil, a couple pull tabs, etc, using just my fingers, no digging needed.

That should avoid the soil problems while you get started.

Edit-using park 1, park 2 would probably pick up lots more tiny bits of foil.

I'm quoting this from another thread because, why not. I already wrote it once and I'm lazy.

Next time start in park 2, scan for a couple minutes,  then switch to park 1 (remember to noise cancel etc, have to do the startup routine after each mode switch) and you will instantly see the difference.  Park 1 is specifically designed to ignore all the tiny bits of foil etc, park 2 is designed to include it (cause hey, maybe somebody wants  to search for stuff like that). Its actually a good lesson/demonstration on how much the different modes/settings change the machine. I was impressed. 

Same applies to freshwater beaches.  I was having a rough time with tons of phantomish targets everywhere,  every few square feet, none of which stayed in the scoop.  I finally realized I had accidentally switched it into park 2 after a half hour of searching. Switched back and knocked out 90% of the signals and almost all were recoverable. 

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7 hours ago, phrunt said:

I've had the same problem before, it was little bits of tin foil all through the playground from chocolate packaging and bubble gum and so on.  I just had to notch out up to about 7 on the VDI's, that got rid of most of the annoying iffy little signals for me and I wasn't too worried about missing too much below 7... sure some fine gold will be there but most will be over 7 and it was all I could do to detect the area without going insane.

The Equinox is very sensitive to small targets, which is why it's so good for gold prospecting, even in Park 1 it can find tiny gold nuggets. 

You could even drop back to single frequency and see if it helps with the EMI / Signals, try 5 first as it will be less sensitive to small stuff like bits of foil but maybe worse for EMI so maybe 10 will be best but it's worth trying them all.

I'd be in Park 1 in that situation too, it will find jewellery no problems if it's there.  Some more experienced Playground hunters / Nox users may have more and better advice for you.

Gotcha, that makes sense. I didnt even think about cancelling out some of the IDs I guess because so many numbers pop up then leave so quickly that it didnt come to mind.

Thanks for the advice I will try again.

I was in Park 2 due to remembering "use park 2 in more dense trashed areas" so I just thought "oh this must be perfect for a playground that has foil everywhere" haha it makes sense to use Park 1 now!

 

Thank you for your input

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6 hours ago, 2Valen said:

I have found if you get within 2 feet of the swings, slides or their frames it will give false signals, so I steer clear of them as much as possible. When going around the swings I hold the chains away from where I have the detector and it seems to do just fine.

Some of the hardware that they use to support the playground equipment may not always be in the area you think it is, as the legs are always further than you think.

Also I turn the sensitivity down to about 15 and my 800 gives good targets, whether it be trash or coin it is still a constant target.

Valen

Yeah I have also noticed that signals would be pretty consistent within a 2 foot range of any of the actual playground equipment, also the cement outline of the playground. Whenever the coil was about 6" away from the cement outline of the playground there was always a signal. Must be something under there around the cement!

 

I did have my sensitivity down to 16 I think for EMI, didnt think of going even lower. I will keep that in mind. Thank you for your response.

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5 hours ago, Lacky said:

I'm quoting this from another thread because, why not. I already wrote it once and I'm lazy.

Next time start in park 2, scan for a couple minutes,  then switch to park 1 (remember to noise cancel etc, have to do the startup routine after each mode switch) and you will instantly see the difference.  Park 1 is specifically designed to ignore all the tiny bits of foil etc, park 2 is designed to include it (cause hey, maybe somebody wants  to search for stuff like that). Its actually a good lesson/demonstration on how much the different modes/settings change the machine. I was impressed. 

Same applies to freshwater beaches.  I was having a rough time with tons of phantomish targets everywhere,  every few square feet, none of which stayed in the scoop.  I finally realized I had accidentally switched it into park 2 after a half hour of searching. Switched back and knocked out 90% of the signals and almost all were recoverable. 

No worries about that. Good information.

 

This makes sense. A good learning lesson about the different modes for sure! quite impressive honestly.

 

Thanks for the input. I will try again!

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28 minutes ago, Edwardakis said:

Yeah I have also noticed that signals would be pretty consistent within a 2 foot range of any of the actual playground equipment, also the cement outline of the playground. Whenever the coil was about 6" away from the cement outline of the playground there was always a signal. Must be something under there around the cement!

 

I did have my sensitivity down to 16 I think for EMI, didnt think of going even lower. I will keep that in mind. Thank you for your response.

Could be rebar or something else metallic in the cement 

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1 hour ago, Lacky said:

Could be rebar or something else metallic in the cement 

Yeah I can see that.

 

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I don't know where you live but here in Colorado the wood chip playgrounds have 6" to 1' of wood chips with a thick fabric weed barrier below that. The weed barrier is stapled into the ground along seams where the fabric overlaps. The staples are targets as are many targets below the weed barrier. I always turn my sensitivity down to 10 or less in these wood chip playgrounds, watch the depth meter carefully and only dig shallow, 6" or less, two way repeatable targets. I always hunt these tot lots in Park 1 because of the tiny pieces of aluminum foil that will come in from 2 to 12 on the Nox depending on size. Park 1 is definitely less sensitive to these tiny foil pieces but will still hit on small gold targets, no problem. Sensitivity at 10 or less will also let you get closer to play structures with your DD coil. Try to always swing into play structure poles and concrete curbing with the sides of your DD coil and not with the front tip. It will double beep easily on the poles or rebar and fool you. If you use the side of the coil to approach play structure poles, sidewalks and curbs you should only get one long beep. If not, you may have a target. Wood chips do not create much resistance for the transmit and receive signal so you can really turn down the sensitivity even to 5 and still do well around play structures, sidewalk edges and curbing.  Running your Nox at 16 will hit every larger target within 1' of your coil including the barrier staples, rebar, and other buried supports for the play structures. Toggle your horseshoe button to check for negative numbers and low tones in Park 1 or Park 2. You can also just use 5 tones to simplify things. 50 tones can be a bit much over aluminum targets, rebar and around play structure supports that have multiple alloys.

Park 2 in sand, gravel or wood chips over gravel and sand will pick up tiny foil, aluminum can shards and even tiny naturally occurring iron particles which can all give signals in the 2 to 14 range. Park 2 is much more sensitive to these smaller targets by design.

 

Jeff

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