metal detector Paihia Tag | The Ring Finders

Wedding Ring Lost at Russell Beach – Found

  • from Paihia (New Zealand)

Paul phoned me at work yesterday, “Is this Pete with the metal detector?”It transpired he had been enjoying a swim at Russell in the Bay of Islands, and had put his hands down into the beach gravels, and lost his wedding ring.He had lost it around high tide, so I arranged to meet him on site at low water later that afternoon.
Russell beach is a very steep, highly mobile pea-gravel, your feet sink up to the ankle as you walk and it ‘eats’ rings.  I have done a few lost ring recoveries here and they are always deep.
Paul had done the right thing though and acted promptly to contact me, as well as being able to meet me on site which always hugely increases the chances of a successful recovery.
I arrived shortly before he did, and decided to make a start. I selected an area as the most logical place for him to swim and started on the low tide mark – No sense in getting in the water if it wasn’t necessary.
Paul turned up in a few minutes and confirmed I was in the right area.  He then marked out the boundaries for me.I started my first grid pattern and within a minute I had a handful of gravel containing his ring!
It’s nice to have an easy one once in a while 🙂

 

 

Wedding Ring Lost on Urupukapuka Island – Found!

  • from Paihia (New Zealand)

Ring Finder – Ring Recovery Specialist…Lost ring? Lost necklace? Lost keys?… Metal Detector Service – Call ASAP 021 401626

I got a call yesterday evening from Laura, who was camping on Urupukapuka Island.
Her husband had just lost his wedding ring in the grass. He took it off and put it in his lap, and forgot it was there until it was too late.
Missing.
After a bit of to and fro organising logisitics that evening, they booked a fast ferry ticket for me. The following morning I was heading to the outer edge of the Bay of Islands with my gear.

Urupukapuka is both the largest and outermost of the islands in the Bay of Islands, and due to the sterling work done by Project Island Song, it is pest-free. This allows several endangered species to safely call the island home.
Waiting for the ferry, I had a short chat to one of the team who was taking a couple of trained dogs out to Urupukapuka as part of the pest-eradication program. These particular dogs are trained to find rats, which can apparently swim up to 1500m, thus able to island-hop to even the outer islands. The patrols around the islands have to be relentless to maintain this pest-free status.

The 45 minute trip was very pleasant over a flat sea and I soon joined the queue of people making their way down the jetty onto the island.
Some immediately established their ‘spot’ in the shade for a day at the beach, others dispersed in order to meander along the various tracks that lead around the island.
One, with detector slung over his shoulder, made a bee-line up the steep hill out of Otehei Bay bound for the campsite. I was booked on the midday return ferry so was on the clock…

It should be noted here, that metal detecting is illegal on Department of Conservation land and historical reserves. I hold a permit from DoC, with very strict conditions, for the purposes of ring recoveries only. This has to carried with me at all times when detecting on DoC estate.

I duly arrived at the campsite and went through the backstory, looking for clues, verifying actions, movements and timelines. These would influence how I conducted the search, and maximise the chances of getting this ring back on the finger where it belonged.
This lovely couple are from Argentina, and to the best of my ability I was going to ensure their ring went home with them!

A principal search area was marked out with towels, hats etc and I got to work, two hours before I had to hike back to the ferry.
I cleared the initial marked area, and started to extend. Assume Nothing, Believe No-one, Check Everything.
The tent had been pitched after the loss, “You know what I’m going to ask, don’t you?” I grinned to them.

A new tent location was verified ring-free, and they started to empty the tent and pull the pegs.
I jokingly mentioned that I would find the ring elsewhere as soon as they had gone to the trouble of moving their camp.
They had handfuls of tent pegs and a partially relocated tent when I heard a soft tone in some long grass under a tree.
I parted the grass and underneath the thatch was a bright gold ring.

Job done, I had time enough to head back to Otehei Bay and sit in the shade with a freshly brewed coffee from the cafe as I waited for the ride home.

Halfway back to Paihia on the ferry, the phone rang, “Are you the ringfinder?”

That story has yet to unfold…

 

 

   

 

View on way to Campsite

 

Cable Bay campsite

 

Lost Wedding Ring Found at Paihia

  • from Paihia (New Zealand)

Ring Finder – Ring Recovery Specialist…Lost ring? Lost necklace? Lost keys?… Metal Detector Service – Call ASAP 021 401626

Having the presence of mind to accurately fix your location, and rapidly contact a dedicated ring finder can make the world of difference when you have lost a ring or other piece of sentimental jewellery.

Josh was enjoying his holiday, lounging in the warm summer shallows at a Paihia beach, when he decided to remove his white gold and diamond wedding ring from his finger to thread it onto his necklace for security.
Fate intervened and the ring fell into the cloudy water.

He spent some time looking for it with a mask, although the zero visibility made it impossible to see.
That was when his wife contacted me.

Josh had made a mental note of a couple of items on shore that lined up, as well as an accurate depth and distance from the beach. It was high tide, but rather than wait for the next low tide the following day, the tight start point encouraged me to make the attempt before the evening light faded.

I waded out, counting my paces and gauging the depth as described by Josh, until I was in the general area. Josh directed me a little further to one side where he felt the ring would be and I started to grid.

Just after I turned to start the second run, I got a clean tone in the headphones – the audio too ‘bright and smooth’ to be litter.

The scoop went in, I checked the hole was clear and shook the sediments out of the scoop. The sand flowed away revealing the lost ring.

One of my fastest recoveries yet – thanks must go to Josh for providing an excellent start point and contacting a Ring Finder ASAP.

 

Lost Gold Signet Ring in the Sea at Russell – Found After Three Years of Searching!

  • from Paihia (New Zealand)

Ring Finder – Ring Recovery Specialist…Lost ring? Lost necklace? Lost keys?… Metal Detector Service – Call ASAP 021 401626

Three years ago, Connor was swimming at Long Beach near Russell and he felt his gold signet ring slip off his finger.
This was a one-off piece, well sort of, as each of the family had one made with the family crest embossed into it. Effectively irreplaceable.

I met with Connor at the time and spent some hours looking for it in the surf and on the beach, however came back empty handed.

It was highly unlikely a casual detectorist had found it in such a short time, so it had to have gone deep with the sand movement.
It became a thorn in my side, knowing it was there…
Any time I was in Russell since then, I had a look at the beach – Some days the sea and sand were favourable so I spent a few more hours looking. As I do with any outstanding recovery.
Other days, there was obviously a lot of deep sand overburden, so any attempt wouldn’t be productive.
About three weeks ago, I stopped by as had become habit (bordering on obsession) whenever I was on the peninsula.
I saw a very shallow and subtle shift in the beach contour so I kitted up.
The first hole produced a very old and white-oxidised lead sinker, this looked promising – but had someone else beaten me to it with the ring?
Second signal was a clean low tone, but very faint. I dug the scoop in deep, but the signal remained in the hole.
Second scoop took me down to around 40cm deep, the hole was silent so whatever it was, was in the scoop.
Expecting another sinker, I shook the sand out of the scoop in the water, looked in and there was a beautiful orangey-yellow of gold, just starting to get that water-aged tone.

Three years… and fifteen days, after it had been lost.

I emailed Connor that night with a photo. His reply was that of amazement, disbelief, and lots of exclamation marks.

Today he drove up from Auckland, and I handed his family ring back to him, smiles and handshakes aplenty.

I sat in the car afterwards, and put a line through his entry in my little black book and wrote, with immense satisfaction,

FOUND! 11/02/21

 

Ring lost in sea at Long Beach, Russell – Found by Ringfinders

  • from Paihia (New Zealand)
Ring Finder – Ring Recovery Specialist…Lost ring? Lost necklace? Lost keys?… Metal Detector Service – Call ASAP 021 401626
Emeralds and Diamonds, oh my…..
Got a call yesterday from Grant that his wife had lost her ring in the sea at Oneroa/Long Beach in Russell 8-10 days ago. Fortunately the seas had been favourable since the loss, so there was a very good chance of a successful recovery.
I met Grant and Sarah on site (always increases the odds greatly if you can meet me) and as I kitted up, they marked out their best guess as to where ‘X’ marked the spot. As the tide was still falling, I did the easy bit on the wet sand first – just in case…
Alas, it was not to be and I had to head into the water, which was still surprisingly cool! I had been searching in waist deep water for a short time when I got a promising tone – on the second scoopful, the hole was silent and I washed the sand out of the scoop to be greeted with a beautiful ring sitting in the bottom. Job done 🙂 I was going to call Grant and let him know I had something for him, when he turned up with Sarah, who gave me a big hug, despite me still being soaking wet 😁

Silver ring lost in sea, quickly returned in Paihia

  • from Paihia (New Zealand)

Ring Finder – Ring Recovery Specialist…Lost ring? Lost necklace? Lost keys?… Metal Detector Service – Call ASAP 021 401626

Jess was swimming at Paihia, in Northland, NZ when she felt the large silver ring slip off her finger.Her boyfriend tracked me down via a web search and I arranged to meet them at the next low tide.
The beach had largely emptied after the New Year holiday-makers so I was able to run a comprehensive grid without hindrance of sunbathers/swimmers or inquisitive children.
As the search area started to open up from their ‘Lost here’ best guess, and with the pouch slowly filling with metallic chaff and the occassional toy car I started to consider other options and second guess myself.

Had it been picked up by an eagle-eyed passer by as the tide dropped? Had I missed it with one slightly lazy swipe of the coil?
Despite these niggles, I stuck to the grid and started out into the water. It had started raining, so I was already wet and with the beach being actively dragged down by the ebbing waves I needed to work this area as best I could before the shells etc buried it if it was out there.

After about three or four passes out to the edge of the actively mobile sand, I got a faint silver tone. Wave surge made it difficult to accurately fix the position, and it was still in the hole after the first scoopful came out. I briefly glimpsed it as it settled in the slurry of shell and sand. This is where you can lose a ring down deep if not careful.  The scoop went in again, well under the ring and heaved the contents out. Hole checked and clear. I had it.

Jess and Johnny were already making their way down the beach towards me as I held the ring up… And the sun started to come out.

How to Find Lost Keys – Hire a Metal Detector.

  • from Paihia (New Zealand)
A rather desperate Glenn phoned me at work yesterday afternoon – The jeans he was wearing when he went out to price a job had a previously undiscovered hole in the back pocket.
He parked his BMW, dropped the keys in his pocket and set to work.
His heart sank when he headed back to the car and realised his predicament.
There were a few catches to this tale; He needed the car to operate his business, The section was derelict and overgrown with waist high weeds, metallic scrap from renovations littered the site (along with domestic detritus from the previous habitation), said property was a solid 2 hour drive away – a smidge under 100miles(!) … and they were lost four weeks ago.
The one redeeming point was the fact that the keys were ‘safe’, albeit lost. They were tucked in the weeds somewhere and not going anywhere.
Mind you, neither was Glenn without them.
I managed to wrangle the next morning off work and headed south at 3am, I needed to be back at the desk at noon so made sure I was on site and ready to go at first light.
Using photos Glenn had taken of the property for his quote, I had several good known points and was able to determine his aged tracks between them.
The actual task of getting the coil close enough to the ground was impossible with the matted thatch of grass and thistles that had grown noticeably in the warm early summer weather.  I would be fibbing if I said I didn’t regret taking this one on when I saw the state of the undergrowth, especially with only a few precious hours available and a revisit out of the question.

First of all, I simply walked his exact path without the detector in order to define the known route and avoid confusion with other peoples tracks and the disturbance later when vegetation had been swept around by the coil.  The exact stops where he took the photos were dotted with fluorescent spray paint. These would become focus points where body position changed (turning, crouching etc). Likewise, places where he walked downhill were likely a higher probability as the material on the back pockets is more relaxed and mobile than when stretched going uphill.
I verified with Glenn by phone whether the keys were in left or right pocket. Since he walked clockwise around the property it weighted the search to that side of the tracks, slightly.
Out with the detector.  I started with a fast pass along the entire route. The endless hits on old buckles, tarpaulin grommets, roofing iron offcuts, toy cars and bits of galvanised tin was soul-destroying but each target had to be verified.
Second pass was a wider sweep, nudging slightly further into the weeds either side, although it was so dense the coil wasn’t making any headway.
I switched to a much smaller coil but while it was more efficient at getting into the grass, it became quickly apparent that with the lesser footprint I wouldn’t be able to clear the area before running out of time.
Final plan was to physically break down the thistles and flatten the grass as much as I could, then use my ‘dustbin lid’ big coil with its larger detection area and greater depth capabilites.
Three hours after starting, I got a reasonable high tone, out with the pinpointer and rummaged it through the long grass.
Parting the stalks showed a key, several keys!
Not sure who was more relieved, me or Glenn when he got the photo of the now found keys.

Lost Gold Earring in Northland Garden – Found!

  • from Paihia (New Zealand)

At the start of the year, Renene was clearing undergrowth on their rural Northland property. Later on she realised that one of the many branches around the head had somehow spirited away her sentimental earring.
As so many people who lose rings or bracelets do, after a fruitless search for the lost earring they conceded defeat and accepted the loss… Until she started searching online for a metal detector to try and find her special missing gold.

We spent a few minutes on site going over her recollection of how she and her husband tried to find the lost earring, where they thought it would be, and the infamous spot ‘X’ was marked as a start point.

The vegetation was very tight, and a layer of past weedings and prunings covered most of any remaining exposed soil. I nearly took the headphones off to run on speaker the entanglements were so bad, however for such a small piece in a sea of background chatter I needed every subtle tone… I quickly cleared the ‘easy’ bits around the site, and headed out to change to a smaller coil to get in under all the shrubs when I got a new bit of intel – the path they usually took in and out.

Back onto the standard coil, and I started to grid the higher probability area of their entry/exit track.
To one side was a pile of branches which I worked hard up against, intending to leave it for a later, more detailed pass if it wasn’t found in the early searching. But since I was there, I’d clear them and close off this area now.
Heaved the pile up and swept the coil underneath, a faint whisper made my ears perk up. I put the detector down and shifted the pile.

A second pass and there was a distinct but subtle tone. Out with the pinpointer and just under the surface, on it’s edge, was the lost earring already making itself very comfortable for a long stay.

I made my way out and beckoned to Renene to come over to see her newly found earring lying where it had fallen some 10 months ago.

She was a bit pleased!

 

 

Gold Ring Lost in Sea at Russell, Bay of Islands – Found!

  • from Paihia (New Zealand)

John was out swimming off Long Beach at Russell in the Bay of Islands, and realising he’d forgotten to leave his gold wedding band behind took it off and dropped it inside his wetsuit for security.  All went to plan, until, at the end of his swim and while wading ashore he unzipped the wetsuit and folded it down.  The inevitable happened, however it wasn’t until he was back at the car and out of the wetsuit he remembered the now absent ring.

He spent some time looking for his treasured gold ring in the grass in the carpark and retraced his steps up and down the beach without luck.

I came into the story three days later and made the journey over to hopefully reunite John with his lost ring.

John was up to getting wet again, so I asked him to take one of my marker floats out and drop it at his best guess for the start point.

Starting initially with a spiral search pattern in the immediate area out to 5m, I then ran parallel sweeps back into the beach in the direction of his travel back to the car – pausing to brace into the occasional larger breaking waves.

Once in the shallows, I took a short break to remove the wetsuit and switch to dry gear for the remainder of the beach, continuing the overlapping parallel sweeps back to the car – With no luck.

I always aim to run at 90-95% probability of detection, and the fact I hadn’t found it irritated me. I explained to John that the chances of missing it were slim, so there was a possibility it had fallen out on the hard sand or grass and been picked up. The search corridor marked out allowed for plenty of space either side of his track, so I was confident it wasn’t there.

John accepted the loss, we shook hands and he headed on his way home.

After packing the gear away, I grabbed a coffee from the nearby vendor and sat in the car looking at the beach with the search grid in the sand… I wasn’t happy about something, but couldn’t pin it down.  I needed to have another go on the “Assume Nothing, Believe No-One and Confirm Everything” principle.

What if John hadn’t come in on the direct line he thought he had?  Watching the swimmers and kids splashing around for a few minutes, I saw there was a subtle longshore drift dragging them along the beach. I decided to go back in and extend the search corridor.

Didn’t bother with the wetsuit this time, just grabbed the scoop and detector and headed back to the edge of the previous search area and started adding another 10m to it in the direction of the current.

After maybe 15 minutes, I got that solid gold ‘thud’ in the phones, and the scoop picked it up first time.

I headed back to the car and not having Johns number, phoned his wife to give the good news and ask her to get John to turn around and come back.  He was a very happy chap when I dropped the ring in his hand.

Ring Found Long Beach RussellLost Ring, Russell Beach

 

 

 

Ring Lost at Kai Iwi Lakes – Found!

  • from Paihia (New Zealand)

Got a message from Geoffrey that he’d lost his wedding ring while swimming at Kai Iwi lakes, near Dargaville, in the north of New Zealand. While this was out of my regular area, there was definite urgency as the lakes are heavily patrolled by holidaying metal detectorists at this time of year. So coffee in hand, I lurched out the door the following morning at 4:30am for the two and a bit hour drive across to the other coast to meet them when the gates opened at 7.

Kai Iwi lakes are real gems, classified as perched dune lakes, these unique features have warm, gin clear water with no organic tint on a white silica sand base, definitely one of the more pleasant places to hunt. Certainly worth a visit if in the North of New Zealand.

Geoffrey, really nice chap, had called in a sick day for work and was settling in for a long stressful day of waiting. We discussed how it had been lost – that old, old story of sunblock and cold water, along with his movements in and out of the water.  He waded out with me so I could get him to visually line up some reference marks he remembered at the time of loss.

Based on his recollection of “looking at that yellow boat”, and “That hill over there” coupled with “I was about this deep…About here”…I dropped the PLS (Point Last Seen) marker float.

Originally I had planned in my head to use the spiral search pattern, although went with a linear search as the water was so clear I could save the hassle of an extra line and see the scoop drag marks on the bottom.
Switching on, I started the first line running out to deeper water, before turning and coming back in towards the beach, this alignment allowed me to use some very easy markers both on land and out in the lake to ensure a good coverage. I had just turned and started the second run when I heard what I wanted.

I gently shaved the surface of the sand off with the scoop and as I lifted it I could hear the ring bouncing around in there. I got Geoffreys attention, then held the scoop up with a big smile and gave it a jiggle. His eyes lit up in disbelief when he heard the rattle.

I held the ring out to him as he waded over, his grin getting progressively bigger and the “No Way!” comments getting louder as he got closer, I suggested there was maybe still time for him to get to work after all  🙂