Moving to detecting for the winter

Hi, so my girlfriend and myself have spent the summer up near Nelson and spent a lot of time up in the rivers scratching around for gold (not done too badly for a couple of novices). However, we have just moved to Queenstown for the winter and need a little advice on detectors or at least where to start.
I heard there is a lot of iron in the ground does this effect what type we should get?
It doesn’t have to be specifically a gold detector but one that will pick up that as well would be great (obviously).

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I get frustrated detecting on my claim in the Shotover. Too much black sand to use my Fisher Gold Bug Pro (VLF detector) effectively, then too much junk to make using my Minelab SDC2300 (PI detector) much fun :stuck_out_tongue:

VLF = Very Low Frequency = Great for detecting where there’s junk as can discriminate iron out easily. Not so great for mineralised noisy ground.

PI = Pulse Induction = Great for mineralised noisy ground, but means you need to dig every target as no discrimination.

Still find gold with both down there though.

Might be worth checking out Minelabs newer EQUINOX 800. I’ve only had a small play, but was impressed with how small the gold was it could find.

Best of luck!


You won’t have much luck with an average machine in Queenstown lots of guys detect in town so you’ll need to walk fairly far and have a good idea of the local area to find gold. At a minimum I’d suggest the Gold monster or equinox 800.
I don’t know of anyone who detects the beaches around town but I’d imagine if you didn’t get your gear nicked by drunkards or you can stand questioning from a thousand people on what your doing then you could do very well, lots of coins and rings mixed in with the ciggy butts and used condoms.

HI Rideaway
I use a gold bug pro like Gavin and really like it on gold and relics/coins/rings etc its really easy to use and the discrimination is great - downside its not waterproof - purchased from Robert at Puiaki supplies who is a good bloke.
I also recently bought a NOX 800 mostly because it is good for gold and relics/coins/rings etc and its waterproof but takes a bit more getting your head around - purchased from Dan Garber at DredgeNZ another reputable supplier.
My main bit of advice is to buy a genuine detector as there are quite a few chinese knock offs out there that will have you detecting sticks, grass, rocks and other crap and you get to dig enough tear tabs and other metal scrap without digging non metalic as well.
As to the beaches around QT they are definately getting detected regularly but can still be worth a look - timing is everything.
Good luck and HH

Thanks guys there’s some really helpful stuff here. I’ll keep in touch as to how we get on