JW has had a bit of an ongoing battle with me, for some time now he's been advising me to use my PI's over my VLFs, then when I bought a GPZ he was advising I use GPZ over my VLF's to find more gold. I know he's right as the proof's always been there, he's been finding more than me consistently since we met but I kept picking up the VLF's as they were my comfort zone.
I've struggled more on the PI's especially and always favored the VLF's as down here at the bottom of the planet we tend to have a lot of smaller gold and far less bigger stuff and the VLF's tend to be the most sensitive to small gold, I ended up finding gold regularly with the VLF's, just nowhere near as much as he was finding with his GPZ. On a trip I'd find maybe 1 or 2 bits and he'd find 8 or 10.
We'd go to go out on a hunt and I'd show up at his place and I'd be standing there holding my Equinox and he'd go OHHH the NOX hey! 🙂 I'd find any excuse to use the VLF as I felt comfortable on them, especially the Nox with all my coin hunts, I knew it like the back of my hand so to take on a PI or GPZ was a challenge.
Over time I've started using the GPZ a lot more and the results are showing, I've certainly improved in my gold take, very rarely do I get a skunk now when I used to get a skunk 2 out of 3 trips when using the VLF detectors or the GPX. I can't really include the QED in the equation as I didn't have it long enough before getting the GPZ so it hasn't had the hours the GPX, GPZ and VLFs have had.
The other day I found a couple of bits of gold with the GPZ and 15x10" X-coil and they were not yet dropped into my bottle of gold so I thought they'd make good test targets as I wanted to work out for myself if I would be disadvantaged using the GPZ over a VLF on small gold targets in the ground. As the soils in NZ even in gold country are very mild burying a nugget at a depth doesn't seem at all different to finding one naturally with the target signal. With the Gold Bug 2 widely accepted as the most sensitive VLF on small gold I decided I'd use that as the comparison detector. I did this test to prove it to myself more than anything but after doing it I thought I may as well repeat it to show the good people on the forum what I'm experiencing. It's not a scientific test, it's not anything more than me proving to myself why I should use the GPZ over a VLF.
I used the 8" X-coil on the GPZ as it's possibly the most sensitive to small gold, although it may not be as the 8" is bundle wound to be able to fit the windings in such a small coil where as the 15x10" that I found the gold with is spiral wound or flat wound as some call it. The flat wound coils are generally more sensitive than the bundles, so I'm not sure if the 8" is more sensitive than the 15x10" and the bigger coil did find the nuggets in the first place. The 8" certainly has the size advantage which usually means more sensitive, it is also unbeatable for in rough rocky terrain where the 15x10" is difficult to get to the ground.
So I went down to the river behind my house to try it out, I go there as my house has too bad EMI for the GPZ, the disadvantage of going there is a lot of hot rocks which trouble the Gold Bug 2 but not the GPZ, so I had to first dig the area out, remove all the hot rocks by using the GB2 to find them and then refill the hole. I dug out a much bigger area than I was using to be sure no rocks would interfere with the GB2 however I missed one to the right of the hole, far enough off to not effect the results but I do hear the GB2 find it when I pass over it during filming. After doing it I thought I should have put my harness on and used the GPZ how I do in the field with the sP01 enhancer/booster and external speaker as for the video I was just using the WM12, and it gives poor audio compared to the sP01, the targets stand out MUCH more when the sP01 is used. I may redo the test and post a video with just the GPZ using the sP01 to show the difference between using it and not using it next.
Anyway, here is the video, I put little captions on it so it's easier to understand what's going on.
I think I've proven it to myself I should focus more on using the GPZ and less on the VLF's...... JW will be happy with this revelation. 🙂
By the way, a GIANT thank you to Dr Lunk, he read my post where I found the two nuggets used in this video where I was talking about the bad vertigo I've been having the past couple of weeks and advised me of an exercise method that can fix it and fixed it for him so I looked up what he was talking about and found this video
I followed the instructions in that video and within about 5 minutes my vertigo was fixed, weeks of suffering ended with a few minutes of an exercise technique. Incredibly amazing so thank you very much Lunk, or as I call him Dr Lunk. It's been two days now with no dizziness, and it was resolved immediately after doing Lunk's exercise technique. I've even stopped taking my anti-dizziness/nausea drugs.
I went for a gold hunt with JW yesterday, he has a sore foot as he was prospecting last weekend and walking up a steep bit of hillside and heard a pop in his foot then very bad pain and could hardly walk. He's still not sure what the problem is, he had 3 x-rays and no sign of a bone break so he is just taking it easy. I'm suffering from Vertigo and have been for the past week or two, it came on from nowhere about 2 months ago when I was skiing and come right in about a week but now I'm having a second run of it, the doctors know what it is and it has a huge name which I've forgotten now but it should pass in another week or two, I just have random dizzy spells that last for about 10 to 30 seconds, and when I lay down it's a lot worse than when I'm upright. For this reason we went to a very close spot where there was little walking required for JW's foot and my dizziness. It's right near as residential area, for example most of the time I was detecting I was looking at a row of houses.
I'd never detected this bedrock before, I've been past it a zillion times though and JW hadn't done it since his GP3000 days I think it was.
We're both using our 15x10" X-coils lately, we are both a bit surprised how sensitive they are as we were always using the 10" for maximum sensitivity then JW put on his 15x10" and was finding absolutely tiny gold so I too did it too and haven't looked back, more ground coverage while maintaining the sensitivity of the 10" due to it's spiral windings when the 10" is bundle wound. I got the 15x10" as I thought it'd be good for ground coverage and finding slightly bigger gold so to find it's more than capable of finding the tiny stuff was a pleasant surprise. Some of the gold I've been finding with it could probably have been found with the Gold Bug 2 and it's little 6.5" coil ,Nox with 6" coil or the GM with it's 5" coil but to cover the amount of ground with those tiny coils vs using a 15x10" coil would just take so long, with the 15x10" you can cover ground very quickly in comparison while maintaining similar sensitivity to these high frequency VLF's so you do have more chance of finding gold in far less time. Obviously the smaller coils are MUCH better in locations where their size benefits you greatly being able to poke and prod in among rocks and lumpy bedrock, in these more flat locations the bigger coils are better for ground coverage.
The ground around these areas is full of shot gun pellets as there is a big rabbit problem, we saw hundreds of rabbits bouncing around on the small walk in, most were little babies too that the parents had sent off to play for the day while they get much needed mating time I guess 🙂
This rabbit hole was quite funny, the little guy spent a lot of time digging a nice hole out, only to find its a short little trip into a dead end of bedrock 😁
As there are so many shot gun pellets the GPZ can actually be a bit easier than using a detector like the Equinox, the Equinox will give you a nice 1-2 target ID on a pellet, the exact same as small gold nuggets, the GPZ will do a double blip on the surface and near surface pellets as the separate windings pass over them so it's a good indication it's a shallow target, you start to learn after passing over and digging hundreds of pellets what they sound like, they all have the double blip but you also get used to their volume level and sound so you can gradually start to ignore them, with the small gold coming in various shapes and weights the noise and double blip of shallow gold isn't as consistent as the pellet noise, especially after a scrape if they move you can mostly ignore them. It is a gamble but it's necessary in places with so many pellets. Shallow gold can do the double blip too but it's volume/sound can often sound a fair bit different to pellets. Any out of the ordinary double blips are certainly worth investigating.
It was only about 20 minutes after arriving and I had a good target sound it wasn't a double blip but it did have a nice target sound, wasn't a booming target that's usually a bullet shell or something, just a nice gold sound. I scraped the grass off the bedrock and the target was still there, very positive sign.
You'll see in the photo above where I scraped the grass away.
Sitting on the bedrock was a bit of gold.
You can see there the cleaned out crack where I got it in the middle of the photo.
And the location above where it was found on some bedrock up quite high off the ground.
0.124 of a gram, a decent size for me.
I was finding a lot of pellets, not necessarily digging a lot of pellets, about 20 fooled me in the 2 or so hours we were detecting, we cut the trip pretty short due to our health issues.
Not much further along the same bedrock I had another good signal,
I had to scrape out the crack and smash away at the bedrock to break it out, this one took me about half an hour to recover as I'm always very careful smashing out the bedrock as I've lost gold before when smashing the bedrock and then the gold goes flying off into the air never to be found again.
It ended up being quite deep, at least 10cm, I had to smash a fair bit of rock out. I was breaking a bit out, cleaning out the crack, checking it's still there, then repeating the process over and over again, slowly and cautiously as it just had to be gold.
This is the depth it ended up being, hard to see in a photo.
It was a tiny little nugget in the end. 0.074 of a gram, it's sitting just above the X-coils branding on the coil in the photo above. I was very confident I had a nugget so I took a short video showing the target noise prior to smashing out the bedrock.
You'll see it was a pretty unmissable target.
And this was it's location on the bedrock, you'll see the dug out crack in front of the coil.
0.074 of a gram.
Not long after this I decided I couldn't keep going, the bending over digging all the time was affecting my dizziness, and JW was sitting down having a rest due to his sore foot I guess so we decided to call it quits for the day. He also found two nuggets, his bigger one was probably .4 of a gram and a smaller one similar to my 0.074, possibly even smaller.
Some more seasoned guys finding big nuggets in OZ may wonder why I even do a post about two little nuggets, I get a lot of feedback from people learning like myself who enjoy the posts as they find them educational, If I help one person with a story like this then it's been worth it, it's not easy learning to find gold, and any help is good help.
Some criticism has been levelled at the X coils on the GPZ in regards to the coils cable mod bricking the GPZ, myself the two Zs I`ve used for many hours have displayed no such problem, I know of one DP forum member who has reported this problem are there any other users who frequent this forum who have experienced this? Also Dave as the distributor of the Z coils how many customers, in the US,OZ and NZ, no names but numbers if possible who have contacted you with this problem and approx. how many X coils have you distributed, ie how many X coil users are out there in these 3 countries. Whilst it is not a major concern to me because I`ve personally not experienced such a major issue, it is of interest, thus a topic to cover this X coil problem.
A mate that was lucky enough to get into Western Australia early this year has been having a good time, he got a 20" spiral x-coil on the Zed now because he was getting big deep gold and some of the holes he was digging with 17x12 spiral at up 900mm and he reckoned there was deeper gold.
This one in the video is not one of the deepest but for the size nugget it is a reasonable dig just the same.
It was election day in NZ yesterday and it was already well known we were going to have a landslide victory to the current government due to their Covid handling more than anything, it was the Covid election rather than a political one so rather than staying home seeing that on TV all day I decided to go for an afternoon hunt. Mitchel drove the other day 4 hours for one nugget, while I can't match that I was going to drive an hour for similar results only if I found a nugget it would likely be smaller than his 🙂
I was going back to a place right near JW's house mainly because it's the shortest drive to a gold area from my house but we have both absolutely slammed it especially with it being only a few minutes drive from JW's house too. This particular little area we've spent days on end at, many days. We've both done well at it but the gold dried up, JW said he's done with the spot but I wanted to try one more thing before giving up on it, my 8" X-coil there. I honestly didn't think I'd find anything but with only a few hours and even less if I drove off further it had to do. I could explore other areas in the similar area but I wanted to try the coil at this spot where we'd both done well on the gold before.
My first target was one I knew was there, I'd hit the target many times in the past but never bothered to dig it knowing it was junk but my curiosity got the best of me so I dug it up.
It was down deeper than I expected for such a booming target.
It was a little old tin, a shame the miner that threw it out or lost it didn't have the gold stashed in it 😞
I was detecting around for an hour or so with very little targets at all other than shotgun pellets that I was just ignoring with the double blip the GPZ does on close targets and if they disappeared in a scrape or so they were rejected for the next guy 😛
I then had a really nice sounding rather faint signal, one that was pretty confident might be my first gold of the day. I dug, and dug and got down quite deep and the target was now screaming so I went over to my bag and got my Nox to try narrow down where it was as the GPZ was roaring on it so I couldn't pinpoint it, I had a feeling at this point it wasn't gold as the signal was too good, if it was gold I was in the wrong country as it was too big 🙂
The Nox was giving odd ID's, for such a big screaming target it was favoring the lower ID numbers between 1 and 10 or so, I was a bit confused but narrowed it down to being a rock 😞
What kind of rock would behave this way? I smashed it open and it had tiny little flakes in it that was sparkly like a silvery type colour.
I put the Equinox down in the hole to try show how deep the rock was. It didn't really work but it was deep.
They didn't sparkle as much in the photo or on camera as in the sunlight.
After that disappointment I was struggling with wanting to continue, I'd had that I'm giving up feeling thinking I wasn't going to get any gold and i got another faint signal quite close to that last signal, a couple of feet at most. I thought here goes, it's another rock.
I scraped away at the ground and the target moved.... here goes, a pellet. I was a bit puzzled by that as I'd done this exact spot before with the GPZ and 10" and the Nox, even the Gold Bug 2 and Monster had been over this little area so was puzzled I'd missed a pellet. It's right near where I found various nuggets weighting around 9 grams not too long ago and JW had also got another 2 or 3 grams from it too. No target was left I thought, but I was wrong... maybe gold does grow back 🙂
Maybe the little guy was on edge of something and fell over onto the flat or something, I have no idea. I was very surprised to find it. This is my new scoop, I absolutely love it, I saw it was the one Steve used so figured I best try it out. The flat base makes life so much easier recovering tiny targets getting them close to the coil, and it has sharpened edges for scraping which is very handy, much better than the round traditional scoops people use. The little gold riffles I thought was a bit of a gimmick but they do really work.
I found a big spider too, you don't see many big spiders in NZ and none are harmful except a small colony of Aussie Red backs that were accidentally introduced into a small area in the same region, they haven't spread though and are isolated to one spot. I still jump a bit when a spider comes out, especially a big one after spending most of my life in Australia where they all want to kill you. 🙂
No more gold for the afternoon so time to head home, it was starting to rain a bit anyway.
So my little nugget, it was 0.058 of a gram until I cleaned it, should have left it dirty 🙂
The other good news, my WM12 has started working, I was having a lot of trouble with it on previous trips with the audio constantly dropping out, this time it was fine, no idea why or how, different location so maybe it was some weird interference at the other spot that kept making it play up even on multiple days. It dropped out a few times but in normal scenarios you would expect it to drop. This time I was using the WM12 with my SP01 as I'd rigged up my harness how I liked it, it meant I ran the GPZ volume on 4 and let the booster do al the work previously when using the GPZ here I'd just run the WM12 with no extra speaker or SP01. I really think a low GPZ volume with the booster doing the work makes faint targets stand out more, the GPZ appears to run smoother.
So nothing too exciting from my afternoon hunt except the weird rock!
JW and I went for a gold hunt yesterday. We've both done this area quite a bit, especially JW. I always disliked the spot, it was my nemesis for so long and I rarely found a nugget there, then all the sudden my luck turned, now I do alright there. We both had our 15x10" X-coils on, JW's been using his all the time lately so I thought I'd give mine a run.
Yesterday seemed like I was doomed however to my first skunk in a long time, I don't even remember my last skunk now. It was about 9.30am I would guess and both went our separate ways. I headed off to the river to try detect the river banks. The river was a bit flooded, lots of snow lately which in spring turns to melt on the lower mountain areas quite quickly. Makes the water quite dirty looking. JW went off to another area away from the river.
I spent a bit of time down at the river trying my luck, unfortunately someone had been before me, there was dig holes around everywhere
I asked JW if he'd been to the river and he said no, so someone else is on the prowl! I left the river after some time of walking around detecting and seeing someones digs and went back to the original place away from the river where JW was detecting. I didn't find a target at all at the river so it was a waste of an hour or two, I don't know if there is even gold near the river, I've never found any nuggets near the river, you can find some gold with your gold pan so I assume there is 🙂
Part of my dislike for this other spot where JW was detecting is it has power lines right through it and it made me really struggle with my GPX so I found it pointless to use there, it has old workings that have iron stones that are buried too, and they sound so good until you dig down and find them, it's also riddled with pellets! between the iron stones, pellets and the power lines it was a nightmare for me so I tended to use a VLF there more than anything else. I often talk about power lines and the agony they cause me, a lot of our gold areas are covered in power lines. I find the GPZ is pretty good under them, I don't run my sensitivity at 20 with the power lines around as it can get a bit messy but I find running at 14 is quite good.
I just left the sensitivity on 14 all day, my other settings were all defaults and my usual high yield, normal.
There is bedrock all over this area, for many miles exposed bedrock everywhere.
The soil and grassed areas are usually quite shallow down to the rock. Loaded with pellets however as there is a rabbit plague in the area.
6 hours of digging pellets I was starting to give up, then i had another pellet signal, away from the obvious bedrock and near a rabbit hole in soft loamy soils. I'd repeated this process countless times, a few scrapes hoping the target doesn't move, and this time, it didn't, more scrapes, still there and getting better, more.... more and it just kept getting deeper and louder... I'm bad at pinpointing with bigger coils so I have to make my hole coil size. I got to the point the GPZ was screaming and was hoping it wasn't some deep junk but I was down to more gravelly soils.
I now used my Mini Gold Monster to pinpoint it in the hole and recover it.
It was found on the left hand side of the hole, and it was almost scoop deep.
My first 15x10" nugget, and what a nugget it is (for NZ anyway)
and it was right near the power lines, I'd never get that with my VLF, the depth just not there. I'd obviously tried the GM when I was thinking it was a pellet before digging and it had no signal at all on it.
Now I had a renewed bunch of energy so I hit the nearby bedrock
Not even 20 minutes later I had another signal that was very promising, survived all scrapes.
And it was gold, I got it out of the crack I'm pointing too.
A nice little bit.
About 20 minutes later the sun was going down and I got a call from JW and we decided we'd head home. I told him I got a couple of little bits, he was surprised when he opened my bottle for a peep! 🙂 He managed to win the day for the tally though with 4 nuggets, 3 of which were absolutely tiny.
And my junk for the day.
Well the junk I didn't lose out of my pocket. A fun day! And not a skunk after all, lucky I didn't give up.
Now the weigh in.
and the little guy
0.141 of a gram.