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Steve Herschbach

Talked Myself Into a 25" Nugget Finder Coil

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Seems like I am pretty well outfitted these days. There is just not much I need when it comes to metal detecting. But I did just decide to go ahead and spring for a 25" Nugget Finder round mono coil for my GPX 5000.

One of my main coils for the last few years has been an 18" Nugget Finder mono that Jonathan Porter gave me when Chris Ralph and I were in Australia. It was a coil I borrowed early on and then used nearly the whole month I was in Australia. I liked the overall combination of ground coverage and large nugget depth, yet it surprised me with how small a nugget it could still detect. JP saw how much I liked the coil and was kind enough to let me take it back to the States with me.

I actually owned an earlier four spoked white version of the 25" coil that I used at Moore Creek a few times. I ultimately decided the coil was more than I wanted to swing and it was too big to pack into a suitcase for air travel. I sold it and have not missed it much. I spend so much time in brushy terrain and steep terrain that I rarely am someplace such a coil would be practical. What you need is flat, open, deep ground with a possibility of large gold.

It turns out there are some places like that I will be visiting this summer. I decided a larger coil would be a good idea but was still worried about going too big. I considered the 20" mono, but it just did not seem like a large enough difference compared to the 18" to be worth the money I would be spending. So I decided to go all the way and go for the 25" Nugget Finder Advantage.

I did prove to my satisfaction at Moore Creek that this huge coil can pull up large gold others miss. We had a flattened tailing pile next to the cabin that produced so many nuggets it was called the "Honey Hole". After one week of it getting pounded by the visitors I went up and flagged several deep, weak targets and then I cheated. I went and got the backhoe and dug them up! A 25" coil should actually come with a backhoe. Three out of five targets were nice nuggets a weeks worth of people carefully hunting had missed.

At over two pounds I will not use this coil a lot, but I will give it a good go in relatively flat, open ground that has been hunted already to the point of being dead of targets. One decent nugget will pay for the coil so that will be the goal this summer - to at least find a nugget that pays for the coil. But maybe, just maybe, it will find something really noteworthy. I will report back when and if that happens.

The new Nugget Finder 25" Advantage is a three spoked gray coil. These silly things are going for $629 these days. A good chunk of that goes to get the coil from Australia to the US and then to the dealer. The shipping cost on these coils is horrendous; they do not weigh much (37 ounces) but they bulk out something fierce when put in a box. I have not actually purchased the coil yet so if somebody has a used one they want to part with let me know.

Looks like I need to take a good picture of one of these to post later. Nearly every photo on the internet is actually a smaller coil billed as a 25" and the few that look like they are 25" coils are watermarked.

Photo of my new coil added 4/20/14

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Hi Steve, I used to have one of the old style orange 24" Coiltek RM coils. That sucker weighed a ton so I couldn't swing it too long. Consequently I did not use it much. Finally got rid of it on a trade. That left me with a NF 16 RM as my biggest weapon. Long story short I bought a new NF 20" RM. I went with the 20" because I had learned with the 24" there are very few places I hunt that a huge coil is an advantage. With the 20" I feel it travels over rough ground and obstacles better than the 24". My coil control is so much better now with the 20" though I used a bungee and swing arm with both coils.

Last fall I hunted a patch that had been pounded by two expert detectorists using NF 25" RM coils. I was able to snag a beautiful 2/3 ounce nugget which I credit to the ability to keep the 20" coil closer to the soil on this patch that was not on flat ground.

I hope you find a big 'un this summer to pay for that 25".

Regards,

Merton

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That's a beast Steve.  A couple years ago I bought the 22" Gold stalker round mono.  It really becomes work pushing that thing around in these hills, as well as more concentration to keep the coil parallel with the ground and not get in a hurry.  It is a really effective coil though when I can find a place to use it.  I was surprised at some of the small gold it would see as well.  Hopefully I will be able to dust it off this summer and give it (and myself) another work out.

 

Good luck with the new addition.

 

Kenny

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I went back and found a picture of that 25" coil I had in 2009 at Moore Creek. Note the makeshift swing arm I fabricated out of a broken fiberglass handle. The Tesoro Lobo was being used as a pinpointer.

 

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Yikes! aint gunna arm rassel you for a beer.

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Hey steve,

how much more depth do you expect from 18" to the 25" ?

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Hi Rick,

It all depends on the ground mineralization and the size of the gold. Maybe nothing, maybe an inch, maybe several inches. Another inch may be all it takes to get that nugget that was missed before.

I do know one thing. If you are using normal size coils, going to smaller coils almost always gets more gold. Going to bigger coils? Not so much. No matter how you slice it big nuggets are very rare.

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I have a 20 incher and I have used it to find gold in places I had pounded before. Its not really for general use, but in certain situations its a great tool. My big problem with it is pinpointing. You can have a real difficult time recovering targets with it. I like to survey an area, dig on the targets a bit to confirm, then flag them and use a smaller coil to actually recover the target. I guess if I practiced with it more, I'd be better at pinpointing with it. 

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Why not go for the 32", Steve? :)

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