Whangarei Tag | The Ring Finders

Matapouri Lost Ring – Found!

  • from Paihia (New Zealand)

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

Matapouri Bay is a very popular beach on the Tutukaka coast with its soft yellow-gold sand and clear ocean water. Unfortunately the beach environment is also one of the prime locations for lost items.
Loss of a ring at the beach is usually due to that fateful combination of sunscreen and wet hands, which can stealthily remove rings, sometimes without the wearer even being aware.
It is advisable to leave rings at home when visiting the beach. At the very least taking them off and leaving them somewhere safe, in a pocket or bag.
However despite precautions, even being in a pocket can be no guarantee that the beach won’t take and hide your precious jewellery…As Tuyana found out a week ago.

She had been enjoying the day at the beach with family, and took her sentimental gold and emerald ring off and put it in the pocket of a dress laying with some other clothes for safekeeping.

At the end of the day, the dress was collected during packing up and when the pocket was later checked for the ring, it was missing.

And so began another ring recovery story.

A local offered to try and locate the ring the following morning with his metal detector, although regrettably was unsuccessful.
After a detailed phone conversation later in the week with Tuyana, I headed down to Matapouri from the Bay of Islands the following weekend to see what I could do.

I had another appointment at Tutukaka at 9am, so made it an early start, leaving at 2am and was on the beach just before 4. I have found four hours searching is usually sufficient to secure 90% of rings – if there is an accurate start point.

By torchlight, I marked out the various high, medium and low probability areas between the ‘towel spot’ on the beach, and the carpark. Then switched the torch off and after a few minutes to allow the eyes to recover, started searching by starlight. One of the joys of having an audio-only machine with no menus or target ID numbers to read.
The area where Tuyana was sitting was probably clear, having already been searched. I rechecked it anyway [Assume Nothing, Believe No-one, Check Everything].

Now I moved into the almost arcane side of things…
We, as a species, are really quite predictable in our unconscious movements.
Have you been on a walk and seen a puddle on the track with new routes caused by people walking around, rather than through it?
Crossing the road, you always adjust your step to land on the curb, not in the gutter… This concept follows through into Ring Finding.

Just under an hour from starting, and while searching the margins around Tuyanas likely path back to the car, I found myself crawling around under one of the boardwalks that leads down onto the beach.
I carefully and systematically checked around each supporting post. Heavy stainless fittings meant the main coil was no good, so it was inch by inch with the handheld pinpointer.
At the third or fourth post, I got a signal just off to the side, I scooped the sand with my hand, and my fingers closed on the shape of a ring.

After verifying by touch that it wasn’t one of those old-style ‘Beaver Tail’ pulltabs off a drinks can, I flicked the headlamp on and sitting in my hand was a beautiful emerald ring.
At just after 6am, I felt it was early enough to text Tuyana and let her know. After all, how better to wake up to the new day knowing your precious lost ring is now found?

Later that morning, after my other appointment, I got to meet Tuyana and add her smile to my collection, then drove off with my own smile.

Job done.

 

Ring Lost Swimming at Whangarei – Found with Scuba

  • from Paihia (New Zealand)
Ring Finder – Ring Recovery Specialist…Lost ring? Lost necklace? Lost keys?… Metal Detector Service – Call ASAP 021 401626
Ella and her friends were swimming at the head of one of the Marsden Cove canals at One Tree Point, near Whangarei and as she moved out into the deeper dredged area, she felt her sentimental rose gold and diamond ring slip off her finger.
Long story short, five days later I found myself kitting up to dive the dock and hopefully locate her lost ring.
Although Ella wasn’t able to meet me on site, she did give me an excellent location of where, and how, it was lost.
Four minutes and twenty two seconds after reaching the bottom, I had the ring safely in my hand – I had spent more time putting the Scuba gear on than searching!
If you have lost a ring, or any item such as a bracelet or necklace, engaging an experienced Ring Finder as soon as possible gives you the absolute best chance of finding it.
This is especially so if the ring has been lost in the water, or in the sand.
I cover Whangarei, Tutukaka, Ngunguru, Russell, Paihia, Kerikeri, Coopers Beach, Taipa, Cable Bay and Kai Iwi and all areas in between.
I pride myself on an extremely high success rate with thirty six years experience and many hundreds of items found and returned in that time.

Heirloom Signet Ring lost at Taupo Bay – Huge potential area, Found by Experienced Ring Finder

  • from Paihia (New Zealand)
Ring Finder – Ring Recovery Specialist…Lost ring? Lost necklace? Lost keys?… Metal Detector Service – Call ASAP 021 401626
Got a message from Krista
” Lost my ring at Taupo Bay today”.
After delving deeper, it transpired she might have lost her treasured heirloom rose gold ring at one of several locations: Washing the car, washing the dog, Potting/manuring some plants, swimming with the dog at one end of Taupo Bay, or when a boogie board was taken from her at the other end… HUGE potential area and with no start point. This is where experience takes precedence over ‘brute force’ (eg trying to cover every square centimeter). I met Krista  at her home, quickly eliminating the car/dog washing areas and the freshly manured garden plants as I waited for her to get ready to head down to the beach, although I already had a hunch where the lost ring would be found… I then followed her to the beach.
There were two locations of interest here, where she went into the water with her dog, and where a boogie board was taken off her. I chose to clear the latter first as it was at highest risk of being picked up by a casual holidaying metal detectorist as it was in the dry sand zone above the high tide mark and this time of year, coils are prevalent…
I cleared the highest probability area of the dry sand and with the tide about to turn shifted my focus to where she had taken the dog into the sea. I could return to complete the dry sand with a high intensity search if necessary.
At the swim spot at the other end of the bay, I asked Krista to retrace her movements and interactions from when she parked the truck. I mentally marked out the highest probability area on the sands as she retold her activities that afternoon and I settled in for a long search into the evening… I typically allow a minimum of four hours which, from experience, is sufficient to recover 90% of items. If the item is at a high risk of being lost to other detectorists, casual passers-by or a dynamic environment, eg surf, I often extend the hours to try and secure the lost item in the initial search phase.
After several circuits of the search pattern, I hit a nice solid tone at the waters edge – 3 inches under the surface lay her heirloom signet ring. It was outside the area she thought it would be [Trust No-one, Assume Nothing, Check everything] but the important thing was – It had been found.
I held it up and started to walk back towards her, a big grin on my face, a grin matched only by hers once she realised it was actually her lost ring and not someones elses.
All done, I packed up and headed home to get ready for my day job.

Grandfathers Gold Ring Lost in Sea at Tutukaka, Found!

  • from Paihia (New Zealand)
Ring Finder – Ring Recovery Specialist…Lost ring? Lost necklace? Lost keys?… Metal Detector Service – Call ASAP 021 401626
Erin was enjoying a swim at Kowharewa Bay, near Tutukaka when he lost his grandfathers signet ring.
The ring was given to his grandfather on his 21st birthday, and had been passed down to him. One of those things that is truly irreplaceable.
His wife contacted me, and I arranged to meet him at Tutukaka the following day to try and recover this precious part of his family history.
I was on site a little ahead of him, so set about lining up landmarks from a photo his wife had sent me and estimating how far out he would have been given the state of the tide and the 90 minute window they were there.
Kowharewa Bay has a very shallow contour below low water mark, so “waist deep” is potentially a huge area. The timestamp on the photo was invaluable as it told me exactly what the tide level was at the time around loss.
Once that was done, I headed back to the car to get the wetsuit on and make a start.
It was still well before low water, so did a quick calculation of how much extra depth to allow – which ultimately meant the curious onlookers on the beach could only see a pair of headphones and dive mask gliding backwards and forwards through the waves, occasionally sinking out of sight to investigate a potential target.
I finished the first search pattern out to one side of the estimated location and was just turning to head over and start a second run on the other side when the coil drifted over a solid tone off to my side .
Slipping underwater, I fanned the sand away to reveal a well worn signet ring.
Ring recovery is a “Game of Inches”. It’s a slow, methodical, extremely disciplined procedure, when there’s a lot of trash signals it can be extremely mentally fatiguing as well as you listen to and analyse every response.
Get lazy with just one sweep of the coil and you could miss the target and walk right past it.
Had the coil not just grazed the ring in this instance it could have been a long 4-6Hrs in the water into the night until the search pattern opened up far enough to include it.
I waded ashore and phoned to let Erin know I had something for him!
He turned up about 5 minutes later and quickly had the ring back on his finger.
Tutukaka Ngunguru Matapouri lost ring Northland Jewellery Recoveries New Zealand Ringfinders Northland Jewellery Recoveries

Two Rings Lost at Whangarei Beach – Found!

  • from Paihia (New Zealand)

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

Had a call from Kim last night, she had lost two white gold wedding rings in the sea at Taiharuru near Whangarei Heads while swimming that morning, one of which was her husbands who had recently passed away and understandably of enormous sentimental attachment.

With the next low tide at 9am, I was fortunate in being able to arrange a later start time at work and so at 4am, I pulled out of the drive and started the two hour drive south to Whangarei to catch the tide.
I met Kims brother in law on site at 6 and he was very helpful in relating the sequence of events.
It was a massive help that someone had the presence of mind at the time to make a cairn of rocks at the high tide line, and also paced how far out Kim was…69 paces east of the cairn – Where a large rock had also been dropped.
Certainly one of the most comprehensive start points I’ve had.

I got set up and paced out from the cairn, down the beach and out into the tide – ending up right at the marker rock.

With the forethought that went into marking the location, the odds had swung hugely in our favour and I started the grid…
An industrial-grade electric fence about 150m away was sending solid pulses through the headphones every second, the novelty of this wore off extremely quickly as it forced me to double check many ‘false hits’ in case it was a ring.
Just over an hour later I got nice metal tone (in between fence pulses) and I fanned the sand away to reveal her husbands ring.

Kims ring wouldn’t be far away.

…And it wasn’t, being located about a metre or so further out.

Both rings now secured, I waded ashore as Kims brother in law phoned her to relay the good news.

It was an emotional moment in town later when I met Kim, handed her the rings and she kissed her husbands wedding ring.

Gave me warm fuzzies for the rest of the day at work.

 

Video ClipThat Moment all Ring Finders Love – When a Lost Ring is Located.

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Wedding Ring Lost in Whangarei Garden – Found.

  • from Paihia (New Zealand)

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

Wendy posted on her local Whangarei community group asking for a metal detector or help to locate her wedding ring, someone suggested that she contact me.

She had noticed it missing one evening, however she had a fairly good idea of where it may have been lost. Walking her dog that day, the wayward beastie had snatched the lead out of her hand – Or it might have been when she was putting up some garden fencing….?
We headed to where the dog had pulled the lead out of her hand first, as it was in a public area so highest risk of being picked up – As soon as we arrived, I could tell it was probably not there due to a highly manicured lawn, surrounded by pavement and asphalt. It would have been easily seen, or heard if it bounced off the hard surfaces. The lawn had been mown since the loss, so for good measure I checked the pile of clippings – Nothing.
Plan B, head for the garden.
I switched coils on the machine to the tiny 6″ unit in order to get in and around all the undergrowth and started systematically working my way around the garden.
About 3/4 of the way around, tucked just under the fence and under a layer of mulch was Wendys ring, invisible to the eye, and in that location probably unlikely to have been disturbed for many years – if ever.

Gold and Diamond Ring Lost Swimming at Tutukaka 5 Weeks ago – Found.

  • from Paihia (New Zealand)
Ring Finder – Ring Recovery Specialist…Lost ring? Lost necklace? Lost keys?… Metal Detector Service – Call ASAP 021 401626
When I hear about a lost ring, I do whatever I can to get it back to the owner,  This has become something of a ‘domino effect’ this month.
Liz was enjoying a swim at Kowharewa Bay in Tutukaka when she felt her ring slip off her finger and disappear into the water.
Efforts to visually locate it at the time were unsuccessful, so she posted on Facebook in the hope someone had/would find it.
Five weeks later, I was in the area delivering another ring back to a happy owner, and since I was so close…Well, it’d be rude not to have a go.
The bay was relatively shallow with a fine silt bed, perfect to swallow rings as soon as they touched the bottom. In amongst the Eagle Ray feeding holes were scattered scoop marks. I knew another trusted detectorist had had a go in the shallows, although he had been unsuccessful. I decided to concentrate my efforts wide of his earlier search, as I could always re-search his area once the incoming tide forced me in closer.
The water was calm, warm and clear which made a very pleasant change from my normal water searches in surf. I was enjoying not having to use the scoop, and instead just sinking down onto the seabed and fanning the silt away with my hand, to find yet another fishing weight, or pull tab off a can.
Accompanied by a school of fearless and inquisitive juvenile fish, I systematically searched the bay in the area where she thought she lost it. The pouch slowly filling up with lead and tabs along with assorted ancient car keys and bits of brass from boats that had passed by over the years.
About 2 hours into the search the phones whispered a bright, clean tone that (nearly) always tells me my search is over. I once again sank under the surface and wafted away the silt – my entourage of followers darting in instantly for any unlucky invertebrates lifted up into the water. As the cloud of silt and fish dispersed, there was the unmistakable outline of the edge of a ring in the bottom of the depression.
I picked it up, and the diamonds flashed in the sunlight, I discovered diving masks leak when you give a huge grin…
It was another fortnight before I could hand Liz her ring, completing a bizarre sequence of connected ring reunions:
I originally travelled down to Tutukaka to recover Merryns ring, lost in the surf at Whangaumu Bay.
After meeting Merryn at Tutukaka later to hand the ring over, I decided to have a go at recovering Lizs ring nearby that I’d read about on Facebook.
Two weeks later, and I’m back in Whangarei to hand Liz her ring, but I travelled down early and successfully recovered Karens ring, that had been shared on the local Metal Detecting Facebook group.
So, one recovery request leads to three separate recoveries and a trio of very happy people, none of whom have met, but all with a connection through TheRingFinders.

Wedding Ring Lost at Ocean Beach, Found after Two Months in the Sand

  • from Paihia (New Zealand)

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

At the end of December, after a day at Ocean Beach near Whangarei, Karen arrived back home to realise she had lost her ring back at the beach.
She had taken it off to apply sunscreen and presumably left it on the towel, and flicked it off when she packed up.
She drove out again to try and find it with her friend who owned a metal detector, but had no luck.
Successive attempts by various people with detectors were also unsuccessful, and she had all but given it up as lost.
As is often the case, it was the sentimental rather than the monetary value that hurt the most.

I was in the Whangarei area to hand over another previously found ring and had come down very early to spend some time at Ocean Beach to see if I could find her lost wedding ring.

Sitting in the carpark just before dawn, I went through her Facebook post again. She had noted several crucial times: When she was at the beach initially, and also when she went back to look and found the tide had covered the spot. Quick flick back to the December tide tables allowed me to work out how far below high tide mark she had been sitting.
She had also had the presence of mind to take photos of landmark alignments which while giving a relatively accurate fix, could equally work against us if a casual detectorist had intentionally sought to pocket it.

A very small white gold ring, lost on a popular surf beach with nearly a two month headstart and an accurate description of the location posted on social media, I wasn’t too optimistic to be honest – but you have to believe it’s there… having that valuable edge of experience to sway the odds in your favour helps.

It was still dark and no moon, but I could see the silhouette of the landmarks against the city glow behind the hills. After a few dry runs to get the best of three guesses as to location, I took the average of the three and started the grid.

Within fifteen minutes, I had the ring in the pouch.

I posted a photo of the ring as a reply to Karens original post, and hoped she would see it before I had to head back north. She did, and several hours later, I met up with Karen and handed her ring back to her.

Two rings handed back in one day – It’s a good feeling.

Ring Lost in Surf at Whangarei – Found after Four Days

  • from Paihia (New Zealand)
Ring Finder – Ring Recovery Specialist…Lost ring? Lost necklace? Lost keys?… Metal Detector Service – Call ASAP 021 401626
Merryn was having a swim at Whangaumu Bay near Whangarei in New Zealand when she felt her wedding ring slip off the finger. The water was too murky to see it, and it would have buried itself in the fluid sand instantly anyway.
It was with a heavy heart she walked away from it.
Shortly after, Merryn happened across a detecting mate of mine and mentioned it to him. Steve wasn’t able to help as it was a marine recovery – but he knew I could as an experienced ringfinder, and passed on Merryns details.
Four days after the loss, I arrived at Whangaumu with a rough verbal guide as to where it was, to get me started until Merryn was able to get there and pinpoint the spot.
I walked the dry sand above the high tide line looking for evidence of where she had been, and spotted two old towel marks in the sand. Must be the spot and I started work.
After a couple of hours being slapped and dunked by the surf, Merryn arrived and confirmed I was in the right place, but the towel marks weren’t hers! It was pure coincidence or human behaviour unconsciously picking the same spot for whatever reason!
The surf was quite dumpy with a lot of sand flowing down the beach. I told Merryn that in these conditions with the four day head start, odds were getting slim. She had to leave to go to another commitment so after watching anxiously for several minutes, left me to it.
Thirty minutes after she had driven away, I picked up a deep tone. Fanned the sand away with my feet and looked down through the suspended sediment to see the outline of her ring in the deep crater.
I scooped it, switched off the machine and headed straight back to the car to TXT her that her ring was now secured 🙂
This morning, I met with her to hand back her freshly polished ring…
Then promptly headed off to find another one nearby, this one lost in the sea five weeks ago.
That one was also saved and will be reunited with the owner in a couple of weeks. Watch this space 🙂

iPhone se Found on Random Hunt at Matauri Bay – Traced and Returned

  • from Paihia (New Zealand)

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

Not all recoveries are planned, some are random exercises in detective work.
I was working Matauri Bay beach doing a casual hunt before work this morning, when I dug an iPhone SE. Usually phones are no more than fancy spirit levels when they come out of the tide but this one was a recent loss and showed potential to be able to at least allow the owner to salvage their photos and contacts.

I headed off to work a bit early in order to put the phone through intensive care, quick rinse in fresh water, dried it off and delicately picked the sand out of the charging port. Firing it up, it flickered to life, complained about flat battery and shut down. It lives! Hopefully I could now reunite the owner with their rather expensive phone.

While I charged it, I swapped the sim out into my phone to discover a couple of missed calls which occurred after loss and looked promising leads.

Dropped the sim back into the found phone and sent a text to both numbers from my one explaining the situation and asking if they had a name I could follow up…and waited.
On the off-chance it had been dropped by a camper at the adjacent holiday park, I phoned the office to enquire if anyone had lost a phone recently.
“Yes, a white iPhone”, “Well, I have found it!” – A cheer is heard in the background at the other end of the line. I arranged to drop it off after work.

It seems Nakita had dropped it a couple of days previously, the fact it had survived at least three tides was a testament to the quality of the phone as it had lain under the sand at about the half-tide mark spending quite a few hours underwater at each high tide.
A family member gratefully accepted it on behalf, and I headed home.