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Afternoon all. 

Heading to the beach for a little bit over the next month and looking for some advice.   🏖️ 🌊 🏄‍♂️

Going to Sorrento in Victoria which has a back beach (faces the ocean) and a front beach (faces the bay).  Currently infested with a bazzilion tourists (soon to be a bazzilion and 5 🤣) as it is our summer school holidays.  

I am told Back Beach can be quite rough so assume that a bit of wave action might be able to concentrate some targets.  I am told this rough side is more for young people who do a bit of surfing, body boarding, etc so to be honest I'm not expecting a lot of decent finds over there - perhaps more bottle tops, lead sinkers and hooks.  

The Front Beach is calmer and therefore sees more families and older people so my guess is a bit more potential for coins, rings, etc.  

The game plan for Front Beach is pretty much the towel line above high tide mark and then at low tide to target about where waist deep water would have been at high tide - if that makes sense 🤪   Looks like the tide moves about 1.4 metres across low/high.  Does this sound like a reasonable plan?  

Back Beach is a little more confusing for me.  There is of course the towel line - that seems easy enough.   But just how much will the wave action concentrate finds and where will they concentrate?  At the low tide mark?   Midway between low and high?  Where there is a bit of a ridge in the beach or perhaps a gutter?  

If a concentrated spot is not evident how would you go about trying to locate such a spot?  Zig-zag up and down the beach as you move along until you get a few finds close together and then start gridding.  I have read Mitchel mention about gridding once he has found a few targets but what method is employed to locate that area first?  

I'll be using the Equinox 800 with standard coil.  I assume everyone has a different method re: detector set-up for TID's.  I am guessing Beach Mode is the optimum for handling the salt and was thinking to simply use 2 tone with a low tone for Iron and High tone for non-ferrous.  Do others also block out numbers below 4 or 5 to cut out the can slaw or is that potentially masking small earrings and things like that?  I know rings (especially gold) can come up almost anywhere across the non-ferrous range but I would guess the majority would not come up under 5?  Does anyone use modes other than Beach?  

Any thoughts or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.  Steve H, wasn't sure to put this in Jewellery, Coin or Equinox forums so if need be please send it to wherever it fits best. 

Thanks, N.E.   

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It is too long ago to remember detecting Sorrento, but popular beaches provide more completion from other local detectorist. Your logic seem right with the exception " young people who do a bit of surfing, body boarding " has been better for me as they tend to have lost more and more value than family groups. However my beaches have been one and all from Smiths beach Cowes Area to Lakes Entrance in Victoria but have found more gold rings in one old beach in Queensland in greater Brisbane.  Your choice of Equinox 800 will be good for eliminating junk.

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18 minutes ago, Northeast said:

If a concentrated spot is not evident how would you go about trying to locate such a spot?  Zig-zag up and down the beach as you move along until you get a few finds close together and then start gridding.  I have read Mitchel mention about gridding once he has found a few targets but what method is employed to locate that area first?  


Don't over complicate the settings.  You will locate most things in the standard Beach 1 mode.  I use 23 here mostly as the sensitivity.  Use F2 at 0 and keep it in all metal.

Now, the zig zag is the way to find a line.  Don't go too fast.  When you get a target then do a circle.  Go down your beach 30 to 40 meters and dig everything.  The clues can be trash also.  You want to know if weights, hair pins, hooks, caps ... anything will give you an idea of what the waves are doing as well as the tide.  You want to know how deep the targets are.  You should be getting down 10" and with the right technique a bit more.  When you connect your digs with your eyes you should or could find a line just above the black sand line (if you have one) where the larger objects were tossed up a bit before the tide went out too far.

You have already done some research.  Does your beach profile include ENERGY?  Look for a website that does.  Also look at your wind waves.  The tide, swell and wind will provide the energy to PUSH your targets along the bottom in high tide.  They will stop at some point because of rocks or a reef as the tide goes out and that is when you find them at what you said would be the waist deep areas.  Try in some rocks if you have a beach like that.

All of this technique is for a beach that has energy and waves.  If you can find a good sheltered swimming beach that generally gets no waves and there is a big parking lot near it then it might be your best beach.  Take your Nox into the water or wait for the low tide.

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Port Philip Bay side tide drop will be less and more sheltered due the size of Melbourne's bay.  The Bass Strait Ocean Side is exposed to wild storm waves and has full tidal swings. Take note of your finds locations in water and hit it again on Good Friday low tides.

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13 hours ago, geof_junk said:

 young people who do a bit of surfing, body boarding " has been better for me as they tend to have lost more and more value than family groups.

Interesting, thanks.  Young and careless perhaps.  

And I am thinking you are right about competition too. Imagine how many brand new Vanquish Christmas presents are going to be swinging around on the beach.  


13 hours ago, mn90403 said:

The clues can be trash also.

Great point.  I remember now that you have said this before.  Trash may lead me to treasure.   

13 hours ago, mn90403 said:

All of this technique is for a beach that has energy and waves.

As Geof indicated this should be the Back Beach exposed to Bass Strait.  I will do some looking later re: a website that has lists energy in the profile.  


13 hours ago, geof_junk said:

ake note of your finds locations in water and hit it again on Good Friday low tides.

It is unfortunately unlikely that we will return at Easter between work and the fact that we don't make many beach trips.  Would normally avoid the beach this time of the year due to the crowds but have been offered a free house for a week by someone my wife works this.  Silly to say no to an offer like that. 


Thanks for the advice so far  😉

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Some of those surfers are wearing the gift or an inheritance of a grandparent. They would never take them off so they wear them in the water. Just this past year I heard numerous stories of lost jewelry that fits this exact scenario. I zig zag the wet slope looking for any line of targets then start gridding. Towel lines are obvious depositories but with a lot of hunters too. 

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For the type of beach that you described I would use the method that Geof has described. He has found a lot of items and I plan to use some of his ideas on a local beach.

Good luck and good hunting.

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   Everyone has pretty much covered the basics here! That should be plenty to keep you busy that week!

   Hopefully you will have some eroded areas to get past the softer building beach sand! I generally run 5 tones,  beach 1 on dry sand, and beach 2 in wet sand and water! But try different programs like the gold 1 or 2! Alot depends on sand composition! I run the highest sensitivity i can, with no interference! And dig it all! Look and feel for firmer sand in the wet, and shell or rocks lines! Lead and gold are obviously good bedfellows! Generally if you are finding can slaw, and pull tabs, (light items), that will be the high tide line! The good targets will be more toward the water line, and may be sorted by a combination of weight and shape, on the ocean side! Any combination of items can be found in dry sand! Very little to no sorting happens there!

   The bay side with no real tidal and/or current action, can find targets almost anywhere that they were dropped!  They will move very little, just get covered! (Sort of like dry sand)! Very different than the active tidal/current side! 

Good Luck! And enjoy the trip!!👍👍

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8 hours ago, Joe D. said:

and shell or rocks lines!

Handy suggestion, thanks  😉


Timely post as I have just got back from my first outing. 

Missed low tide at the ocean beach - tide app looks to be 1.5 hrs later than what it actually is.  Couldn’t get near a decent gutter that we had seen just a few hours before when we had gone for a swim  

All targets there were in the dry sand. Could not get a hit down near the waters edge. Assume that no recent drops and what has been there awhile has concentrated lower.  

Found a pair of earrings (quite a few metres from each other so that was funny), a $2 coin, 50 cent coin and a 2 cent coin.  Now the 2 cent coin is strange as it was right on the towel line, was shallow and those coins haven’t been in circulation since the mid ‘80s.  Would have thought someone would have got it by now. 

Then tried the bay side beach for only an hour or so.  Nothing decent there - mostly beer bottle tops.  

Haven't seen another detectorist for the whole day!  

Pic is of total finds at both beaches.  



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Day 2. 

Same back beach.  Got there for a real low tide.  A good slope to the beach with a gutter at the bottom and then flat for 30 or so metres before sloping, deeper and the low tide waves. 

The gutter = not a single target.  There may be quite a depth of sand, I’m not sure.  There are rocks either side of the life guard flags and tried around quite a few of them to see if anything had got hung up but nope, nothin’!  

Back to the dry sand right at the top of the beach and at least there were targets but not as many as yesterday. 20 cent piece, ring pulls, random crap and then  😳


925 means gold plated silver I think.  Wife thinks it’s a real pearl as it is rough between the teeth.  Fake is smooth apparently  🤷‍♂️

Daughter claimed it pretty quick! 

Happy with day 2  😀

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