I put all my gear in the car the night before ready to roll as I was intending to go for a solo mission to try find a nugget, or a flake, which ever comes my way, I am happy either way 🙂 I sent Kiwijw a text message that morning as he hadn't been on the forum asking if he'd like to come along as I knew he wasn't working that day and he was all for it. It was unusual he hadn't been on the forums but it's because his computer had broken down so I told him I'd take it home with me and fix it up.
The day was off to a cool start, I left home and at the time I think it was -5 degrees celsius and very icey on the road, black ice everywhere. I was in a thick fog when I left home to head to John's to pick him up but that cleared up about halfway to his house, it was about -2 when I got there I think and nowhere near as icey up his way. We jumped in the car and off we went, the roads were much better up his way as it was nice and sunny.
We went to a spot we have been to quite few times before and had success, I call it the shotgun pellet place as there are zillions of them there. I think I've even done a solo mission there, I don't have any record of that as I obviously was skunked if I did but John mentioned I have been there before myself and I vaguely remember it now I think about it. I've done a few solo missions to various places but rarely have any success on them for some reason and I only tend to remember times when I do well.
Cool looking rock at the area I was first detecting, looks like a broken easter egg, it looks like its a big hollow rock that some has broken off over the years. Maybe old timers used it as a hut, I know I would.
We started off detecting, John on his Zed and me with my 4500 and my new Nugget Finder 14x9 Evo coil which I'd been dying to try out but just hadn't had a chance.
I'd found nothing by lunch time except junk and If I recall correctly John was up to number 3
My days junk collection, I had quite a few more shotgun pellets but they fell out of a tiny hole in my pocket. That little bit of wire on the far right side screamed out as loud as a 22 shell, puzzled by that. In the process of recovering some junk I used my GM 1000 as a pinpointer, the spot was really muddy so I tried to take my coil cover off to give it a clean as I was right at a creek as I was going to put my Monster in my backpack so it's not left sitting there out in the open in case some passer by stole it, unlikely but I'm cautious of thieves after living in Oz for years and having house and car break ins and so on over there. John leaves his Zed lying around like that, it scares me 🙂 So I tried to pull my coil cover off and my coil cracked, a big crack too just by me using my fingers to push it in a bit to get the cover off. I wish they were tougher epoxy filled coils. I've since spoken to Minelab service who said they will replace it for me, see this link for photos of the crack More excellent service from Minelab, thanks 🙂
John come walking over and showed me his finds and we had some lunch. John suggested I go try detect some throw out piles from the old timers as it may increase my luck and showed me where they were and off we went detecting again.
It was only about 20 minutes and I had my first hit, right next to a big hole someone else had dug to recover a nugget, probably John as it was a big hole like his pick makes
My little hole at the top, someone elses big hole below it, my little nugget was down about 10cm to 15cm I would guess.
About 30 minutes of swinging later on top of another pile which was covered in soil and grass and not rocky like the last one I had another good target, It sounded promising and it seems junk in this area is uncommon as I'd had no junk digs since moving to it.
I had to smash up the ground here to retrieve this one, it was in the shade and the ground was frozen solid, it actually made the recovery quite easy as the clumps of dirt were coming up as frozen blocks so I could sweep each chunk over the coil until it sounded off, then melted the target clump in my hand to get the gold out.
I started swinging around further along this pile and there was a giant bit of schist and it was giving me a good signal, I spent about 20 minutes scraping the moss off and checking it all for the target and also breaking away the top layers of the schist trying to find where this signal was coming from, it had me stumped. I wasn't sure what to do, I was going to go ask John thinking possibly it's some sort of hot rock situation but I could see him off in the distance, too far away and I was unsure I'd find the spot again if I left it so I decided I'd try move the rock, maybe the target is under it. It was in frozen ground and had suctioned itself down, it was also FAR to heavy to lift, I used my pick to dig around it a bit and lever it up, this took a good half an hour and I was exhausted, I managed to move it a tiny bit which relieved the suction, it also had me rolling down the side the of pile as I took a tumble when the rock finally gave way.
You can see the top part of the rock here where I was chipping away at it trying to find the target inside it.
Now that the suction was gone I was able to lever it enough that I eventually slid it down the side of the pile. I eagerly checked the area where it was and bingo, the target sound was still there.
You can see the size of the rock here with the indent in the ground where it came from. The rock would of been about 20 cm thick too and then the nugget was down another 5 cm or so in the soil under the rock.
and it was my biggest nugget of the day 🙂
I went to go show John my find and tell him the story and he said I should go scan that area a bit more as there could be more, we only had about an hour of light left so I wandered back to try find the spot, and wouldn't you know it, I couldn't find it, lucky I didn't leave earlier to try get John to help move the rock.
So all in all a good day out, fixed up John's computer today so he'll appear back on the forum tomorrow no doubt as we are heading out for part two of this mission so he'll get it back tomorrow, it needed a new motherboard. He had someone nearby to his house look at it as it was running very slow and they did the usual things like spyware checks and cleaning the dust out and so on and had broken a fan mounting clip for the CPU in the process of the dust cleanup I guess, John said it got really noisy after they looked at it which is normal as the fan would be going top speed trying to cool the CPU with the poor contact of the heatsink and shortly after it died and wouldn't post (display a signal on the screen), I guess the cpu heatsink being so loose caused the CPU to overheat by not being clipped down properly and caused the motherboard to die, or else it was a huge coincidence the motherboard dies the day after they clean out the fan and break its mounting clip. In saying that I've not seen a motherboard die from heat in this manor before, although I've never seen someone run one with the heatsink not clipped down properly.
As for my first proper detect using my new Nugget Finder Evo 14x9, I love it, It seems just as sensitive to tiny gold as the little Joey coil if not even more sensitive but punches deeper, It's ability on small targets feels like using a high frequency VLF. It's going to be my stay on coil from now on, the little Joey will be perfect for tight places and creek detecting and situations where a smaller coil is required. I can highly recommend the Evo coil. Thanks to all the people who recommended to me to buy the Evo coil. I am very happy with it.
Stay tuned for John's portion of the mission when he gets his computer back tomorrow 🙂
Hi folks, I am interested to know if this coil is any good? It looks like an older model Nuggetfinder...If anyone is familiar with the performance of this coil please let me know. Only reason i ask is because I would like to buy it, but I don't know much about the early Nuggetfinder coils quality. If any Aussie shooters or here in the States have any info, I would appreciate to hear what you think of it. Thanks !
Just wondering has anyone used a 16" round advantage mono coil as of lately and if so what did you think of it? I know many of you have upgraded to the zed, and most of the talk lately has been on the zed but there's still some of us with the gpx. Been silencing my old patches of trash and gold and been thinking of a new coil to get to hit the old patches and hopefully squeeze some nuggets deeper out of range of my Orange 15" Coiltek mono. I am thinking a 16" - to a possible 18" advantage coil max for the areas I hunt.
I'm just wondering if anyone can tell me why Nugget Finder doesn't make any DD coils. Seems to me they are missing out on some sells.
I was once a die hard Coiltek fan but after the Gold Stalker series they lost my business.
I went to Nugget Finders after that and I have not looked back. I would love to have a large DD coil of the same quality. Any suggestions?
By Steve Herschbach
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
By Steve Herschbach
I see Nenad is listing this coil on his website at http://phasetechnical.com.au/product/nugget-finder-19-evolution-coil/
The 19" round open spoke Nugget Finder EVO weighs in at about 1100 grams (2.43 lbs) and is designed for the Minelab SD, GP, and GPX series detectors. It is also being shown at GoldSearch Australia