By Steve Herschbach
Get the full scoop with photos at the Minelab Service Parts website. So far nobody appears to be selling the 3011-0405 battery but someday it will be something to possibly have to deal with. So far though I've not heard of any battery longevity issues... mine still give me a full day service and they are the oldest in the country.
Replacement Minelab Equinox battery with battery door/plug (separate part)
My new T2 arrived this week so I decided I'd take it out for a test run today, I haven't bothered detecting football fields before, it never really crossed my mind to do so especially small town football fields that barely ever get used. I think the last time I even saw people on this thing was about a year ago and they were riding a horse 🙂
I guess back in time it was probably a popular place and my results today show this. This is going to be more of a picture story as the pictures tell 1000 words!
I started using the T2 with Mars Tiger coil and within two minutes of arriving I had my first coin, then another, then another..... it was nuts, coins everywhere and very little junk, I was finding nice old coins, possibly one of my oldest in a while too
1938 British Penny
The T2 was getting good depth, easily hitting on coins with good ID's, another silver!
1948 Penny - Now NZ currency, not British like the older Pennies, we used some British currency until 1967.
Prior to 1933 United Kingdom currency was the official legal tender of New Zealand, although Australian coins and notes were also generally accepted.
The first New Zealand penny was minted in 1940. The penny ran until 1965, when New Zealand stopped minting pre-decimal coins in preparation for decimilisation in 1967.
I have no idea what this thing is
This is the football field I was detecting, under the goal posts and along the end of the field had a good collection of coins, I guess from all the diving with the ball and coins in the players pockets, I don't know much about football, probably the only NZ male who has no clue about the game 🙂
My oldest find of the day, a British 1912 One Penny
It was quite deep down but the T2 banged on it real hard with a solid ID. At this point I decided I'd go home and gear up better as this place obviously has a lot of good old coins. I was only using my T2 with Carrot and Lesche digging tool which was hard work with all the coins being so deep. I wanted a bigger coil to cover more ground but there was no way I was going to strap on the 15" Teknetics coil to continue using the T2 as it weighs a tonne. I opted for the Equinox with it's 15" coil and almost straight away after turning it on, another coin
1950 NZ One Penny. I left the bit of dirt on the coil up the top it came out of, I love when you get the impression of the coin in the soil.
Another silver, 1934 Shilling
This is the hole it came from, I always recheck my holes and I'm glad I did, another target in the hole, then another... this was crazy
3 Silvers in the hole so far, 1934 Shilling, 1934 Shilling and a 1946 Sixpence, I was sure this was it but I did another check and off to the side of the hole, ANOTHER SILVER
Another 1934 Shilling, 4 silvers in one hole, incredible! Someone had a bad day.
1964 Sixpence... the coins just kept coming, all old ones. No longer are they made of silver in 1964...
Nice and deep though
My first modern coin, a $2
But look how deep it was, it was deeper than a lot of far older coins.... weird!
Another two in one hole, just one cent coins from back when NZ had one cent coins.
Another coin leaving a cool impression of itself in the soil, just a one cent I think
It sure a lot of ground to cover, I'll be at this place for weeks... plenty more coins to find I'm sure. Time to head back to the car, with my coil to the soil.
Another for the road 🙂 Double sided impression on the soil with this one. I couldn't possibly put up a photo of every coin find as there were just too many, all in about 3 hours detecting.
The good stuff
The bad stuff... not a bad ratio, good stuff far outweighed bad stuff, unusual for me.... I'll be back there tomorrow.... and the next day.... and the next day 🙂
The weather here hasn't been very summer like, while Australia is having heatwaves and severe bush fires we've been wet, with regular snowfall. The lake levels are at crisis point where the nearby towns are close to getting flooding. The rivers and creeks are all roaring with water washing around some nice flood gold 🙂
JW and I decided we'd go prospecting yesterday for a bit of fun, we went to one of our old haunts, we've done this area and this particular spot so many times and every time we think it's hunted out however JW's 10" X-coil got a fair few bits there last weekend and this weekend he was going to try the 12" X-coil to see how it goes there. It was raining heavy at my place when I left and JW's house was also meant to rain all day but this particular spot we were going to the mountains were meant to keep the rain at bay.
Here is a little video of a Dam we drove past showing the flood gates open due to all of the rain, where I was standing filming it I was getting wet from the mist of the water
I didn't notice at the time but if you look hard you'll see two people in yellow jackets standing down at the base of the dam having a shower in the water 🙂
I went not expecting to find anything but I just enjoy the hunt anyway and as it goes with gold, you never know. I wanted to try out the 12x6" X-coil on the GPX 4500 as I've never used that combination at the spot and I've mainly used my QED lately so the GPX is getting dusty. The reason this area is such a challenge for the GPX is the massive high voltage power lines that run through it, they're connected to the Hydro Dam and with all the flooding going on they must be really pumping out the electricity. As I've mentioned in the past the QED handles the power lines fine at this spot although it is very sensitive and I do spend a large part of my day digging shotgun pellets when using the QED here. I am sure a KQED-spert could tell me ways to get around that, maybe changing my mode from Mode 1 to one of the higher less sensitive modes would probably work. It's the reason I don't like using VLF's here too, pellets... pellets.... pellets 😞
When we arrived I strapped myself up with the GPX, all my cords and harness were in a big tangle and fired it up and no audio, bugger! did I forget a cable. In a massive panic I went back to my backpack and searched for a missing cable. It turns out all I'd forgotten to do was plug the speakers into the Steelphase SP01, I'd plugged the SP01 into itself with a loop of the cord 🙂 It shows how long it's been since I've used my GPX, forgot how to plug all the cords in. I really like not having all these cords and harness with the QED.
I've run the GPX at this spot a number of times and it has found me gold, prior to getting any X-coils I used to use my 14x9" Evo here, I had to have the gain quite low and audio in Quiet to get it semi stable but it never really ran nicely, I was never able to get a smooth threshold. I have one of the early Australian made GPX's which I believe were a bit more noisy than the modern ones too which doesn't help.
There are lots of old tailings piles at the spot, most aren't worth detecting as they're just big rocks, and the ones that are worth detecting have been pounded by every man and their dog, including myself and JW many times.
Someone had dug a massive hole, it looked quite fresh, It looked at least 15 inches deep and all they got was a rusty bit of metal that they'd left beside their hole!
The little 12x6" X-coil was working quite well on the GPX considering the power lines, It had a bit of pulsing but the threshold was mostly pretty good considering, I had my gain on 12 most of the day in sensitive extra with audio in boost and was pretty happy with how it was running, a stark contrast to when I used the EVO here I had to keep my gain down at 8 with audio in Quiet and it was still noisy. It's always my go to coil for high EMI areas, the smaller size and I guess whatever else the manufacturer has done has made it a pretty good coil for EMI.
I was struggling to find any good targets though, it was only probably 10 minutes after we first arrived that JW came over to show me his first bit of gold so I knew there just had to be some gold left here. I can't expect to come close to his GPZ + small X-coils though, there is no better combination in my mind for finding these small gold bits at depth.
Here is a photo of the dirty great big power lines with all that flood power running through them 🙂 The weather held up mostly well for the day, a few showers, a few minutes of hail but mostly sunny.
It kept getting a signal on this big rock, it's loaded with quartz in lines through it, hitting it with my pick did very little so I gave up on it. The photo doesn't show the size of it, it was three times bigger than I am 🙂
Seeing I was desperate to find some gold at this spot and didn't have much hope for myself I resorted to my usual tactic of flipping big rocks over, it's worked here in the past. I guess those who have detected the ground before me didn't do it and the rocks added enough depth that they missed the gold under them.
I was regularly finding these little skinks living under rocks, I believe they're rare and endangered so I was always very careful not to injure any of them.
I flipped over this massive rock and a spider ran up my arm and under my t-shirt sleeve, I panicked and shook my arm and brushed at it to knock it off. A side effect of living most of my life in Australia is a fear of spiders, NZ doesn't really have that issue and poison or dangerous wild life aren't really something you concern yourself with however the Australian in me kicked in and I wanted to get it off me quick smart. I did that and looked down expecting a little harmless NZ spider and to my surprise it was an Australian Red Back Spider (Australian black widow). A Deadly venomous sucker that could have killed me and it was the biggest one I've seen in my life. We used to see them quite a bit in Australia but I never expected to see one here. It's a shame I didn't put something next to it for scale to show just how big it was
Shortly after this photo I introduced it to my foot. After doing some research it turns out they do live in the area and they're trying to get rid of them as they're an invasive species that came in from Australia, I am surprised they survive the winters, the grounds often frozen solid here in winter.
After my scare I decided I'd stop flipping rocks and started detecting the cracks in the bedrock. The grass growth from all the recent rainfall has made life difficult too, normally this place is dry and brown.
I found a good area of bedrock and detected along various cracks in it, ones that didn't have too much grass and found my first bit of gold for the day.
A little guy but a real screaming signal. I was never going to miss this one, it sounded like a 22 shell does.
.247 of a gram! Quite big for me lately 🙂
I checked that spot a lot after that hoping for more, I even dug more soil out of the crack and checked it hoping there was another undetectable bit deeper but I was all out of luck so I moved further down the crack and had target, very faint, not a screamer like the previous one but sure enough another bit of gold.
This one was quite deep down in that little crack there
It looks about the same size but it's very thin, not much to it.
0.103 of a gram.
Here is a little video showing when I get them, it also shows there is no knock sensitivity of the 12x6" X-coil even with my gain up high seeing this question is often asked about various X-coils.
I kept hunting around but found no more gold for the day unfortunately.
Someone went to a lot of effort to prop this big rock up, I checked under it but nothing.
I later switched to the 15x10" X-coil but I had to lower my gain down a fair bit as it was being messed with by the power lines, I knew it would be as my 14x9" Evo is terrible here and it's even bigger.
I also found some weird sheltered spot under some rocks where it looks like some crazy wild animal has been living bringing back the bodies of it's victims. After my Redback discovery I thought this could be anything, maybe an African lion or the elusive Bigfoot so I took off quickly.
I didn't want to join the bones 🙂
And that was it for the day, 2 for me for a total of .35 of a gram. KFC time!
Ok.. I've encountered some really tough ground conditions in a lot of areas that I hunt regularly. We are talking the red dirt with little shiny particles all in it that also has iron mixed in. My Teknetics T2 struggles in it. My ORX struggles but will fish things out if you can stand the machine gun blips. I keep reading that the Equinox is more suited to deal with this. Now, I tried an Equinox 600 and found it to also cut up on certain plots of land, and the particular one I had was really horrible in iron. The tones also played tricks on my ears and I found the bleepity bling like sounds to confuse my caveman brain. The ORX has been a decent detector for me, and helped me rehabilitate myself after a car accident this year. However the tones in it are so close together that my ears can not often discriminate high from mid tone. There is no way to adjust it.
Let's fast forward to today. The Equinox 600 does not have the adjustability of the 800 concerning tones, or at least that is my understanding. I walked away from my Equinox 600 ticked off that I could not seemingly bond with it. In my mind there was a single thought - how much better would the 800 be? For those of you that have especially used the XP ORX or the Teknetics T2 and also used an Equinox 800 I'm asking you, does the Equinox 800 do better in contaminated soil than my current 2? It is possible I will trade the XP ORX towards the EQ800. Would that be a "step-up" in capabilities? I've always found this forum and the people here honest and fair with no BS. So I ask you, would it be worth the extra money, hassle and such to truly give the Equinox 800 a chance even though I had a 600 and it didn't quite suit me. It is entirely possible the 600 I had may have had a fault of some type for all I know. And what of depth with the EQ800 vs the XP ORX?
Reaching out to everyone in the know.
Has anyone increased their 50 tone pitch from its default setting of 20 to max of 25?
I want to receive the highest pitch that I can to closely resemble the sounds of the FBS machines, etrac, explorer, safari. I don’t quite get those flutey FBS sounds I would like to hear but the adjustment is as good as it’s going to get, I think. I’m assuming this shouldn’t change anything in areas of performance, because all I’m doing is simply increasing the audio pitch up and down the TID scale. Or is there something else to this once you go off of default settings?
I thought I’d put this scenario out here to hear feedback from those who are hunting 50 tones set at a higher pitch opposed to its default setting of 20.
I appreciate your feedback.
First post, please do not judge... Question to more experienced EQ 800 users. I have been detecting for over half a year now, got piles of questions I can't seem to find a definitive answers, so decided to register and ask instead. I also want to highlight I'm interested in all relics, not just coins. Thanks in advance.
Long story short, I have 2 things to ask about, these are sitting for quite a while in my head and can't seem to figure it out. First and probably most asked is the firmware version. I have tried all 3 versions (with proper resets before and after) and my suspicions are that the oldest is the most neutral to the other newer ones - most suited to "all" detecting. Newer ones' frequency response is not as flat, but equalized if I can express this way. The newer it gets, more biased towards coins and larger objects it seems to appear. For example, with stock 11" coil, on fw 1.5 I could detect items as small as pistol round lead bullets (16-17 century), around 4-5mm in D, while with the V2 it simply does not see them at all. In fact, with V2 I pull mostly larger coins and not much of anything else. I also own 15" coil and in regards to small objects of say, I see the following unmasking pattern:
Small copper button (10mm D) in top of mineralized soil, same program, sensitivity, GB 0, IF 0, FE 0, recovery 4:
v1.5 - 11" performs better than 15" - can ID easier with with 11 with iron grunt
v1.7.5 - 15" performs better than 11" - can ID easier with 15 with iron grunt
v2.1.12 - neither of coils can see the button (FE 0 and F2 0), not even a chirp, completely blind, just iron grunt
It takes an awful lot of time to test things, I often hunt same fields, therefore my question, what fw do you use for digging everything?
Situation no 2. My friend owns XP Deus lite and we went hunting on 200 year small old field full of coke (VDI 1-2). Soil was excellent, GB was 1! He was pulling various buckles, coins and buttons from a significant depth, while I found only few coins and one other copper thing, he only made 3rd of field when I finished. We frequently tried to scan questionable targets with both detectors to confirm if they are worth digging. What happened next was a bitter surprise. He pulled a button from about 10" hole beside the coke. I asked him to drop this button into the hole to try to ID it again, but Equinox was completely blinded by the coke, all I could see is VDI 1 and no matter what program or setting I tried, and notching it out, different angle and speed, no chance, nothing. The only thing I did not try is to switch to single frequency. Deus had absolutely no problem seeing it. I feel I missed so much in that field. I was running fw V2 and I really want to go back there once more with the old version. Is there anything you think I could try to get past the coke? I'm going to that field again this weekend.
Just to add another oddity. I have done a FP reset on the equinox at some point and that made coke to sound very faint for a half a minute before it returned to full blinding strength.
Sorry for rather long post. Thank you