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Finding small gold jewelry on the beach with the Minelab CTX 3030

March 15, 2013 03:46pm

Gary Drayton
Gary Drayton beach metal detecting with Minelab Sovereign GT metal detector

I can boldly say the CTX 3030 is the most sensitive metal detector I have ever used for gold jewelry hunting on the beach and this awesome metal detector has changed my approach to finding smaller items of gold jewelry on the beach.

One of my favorite methods of hunting for gold jewelry on the beach is “hot spotting”, which is as the name suggests, searching for hot spots on the beach that may contain gold jewelry. In the past I preferred to search these productive areas on the beach using smaller search coils in the 5 to 8-inch range. I started using the 6-inch Smart Coil (CTX 06) with my CTX 3030 at every opportunity to search trashy beach sites and never liked leaving the house without the small search coil to back up my 11-inch search coil.

However several weeks ago I forgot to take along my small “trashbuster” search coil when I ran across a beach hunters dream situation, a beach with a 6 foot cut opposite a popular tourist beach running for several hundred yards. At first I mistakenly thought I was at a disadvantage using my standard CTX 3030 11-inch coil searching for shallow jewelry targets trapped towards the base of the cut.

After I began to search the eroded beach I got to thinking that maybe I had been too hasty in my decision to always go with the smaller search coil on trashy beach sites. I was taken aback at just how sensitive to small gold jewelry the 11-inch Smart Coil is when compared to other smaller search coils I am familiar with.

When I arrived at the eroded beach there were at least 12 other people metal detecting along the cut, mostly using popular beach and water hunting machines with 10-inch search coils. More people would show up thru out the afternoon in a kind of beach metal detecting frenzy that only a severely eroded tourist beach could attract.

The tide was coming in and waves were rolling up the beach and lapping against the base of the cut, I chose to use the standard CTX 3030 Beach mode with Seawater on and a Manual Sensitivity of 26. It was not too long into the hunt when I heard the distinctive custom low tone that I had previously assigned to gold in the CTX 3030 Tone ID profile. I saw a flash of gold in my scoop basket and sitting on top of the dumped scoop of sand was a small 18 K gold cross.

Not wanting to alert the other beach hunter’s to my gold find, I quickly put the gold jewelry find in my zippered pouch pocket and continued metal detecting. I recovered my second piece of gold jewelry in the spoil pile of a beach hunter in front of me, a 14 K gold wedding band.

It was quite an eye opener seeing the small gold jewelry finds starting to rack up as the beach was being so heavily hunted.

Small gold found with CTX 3030

I continued to follow several other beach hunter’s who did not appear to be digging very many signals and I came to the realization that they were not hearing the gold. The beach had many large pieces of iron rebar and even more smaller corroding ferrous scraps laying on the surface.

While the other beach hunters were dealing with the constant nulling threshold effects of iron on their 10-inch search coils, my CTX 3030 with the quicker recovery speed and more sensitive 11-inch Smart Coil was finding gold.

The next morning I returned to the same beach and recovered another 3 pieces of gold jewelry while searching behind several local beach hunter’s. A slow methodical beach hunting style and the standard CTX 3030 set up provide a beach hunter with the ultimate in depth and sensitivity to small gold jewelry finds.

More small gold found with CTX-3030

I walked away from the beach with 15 pieces of gold jewelry and most importantly a whole lot of love for my CTX 3030 11-inch “trashbuster” Smart Coil.

Stay lucky!

Gary Drayton


To make comments you must be logged in, please note comments will not display immediately due to moderation

Guess I am going to have to look into this CTX 3030..
Posted By: windage on April 18, 2013 07:42am
Hi Windage
The waterproof CTX 3030 is very versatile and has more than enough features and options to make it a wise choice for land, beach and water hunters.
Best of luck
Posted By: Gary Drayton on April 18, 2013 11:20am
I was having trouble getting the orange gasket out to clean the sand that always seem to get in the battery compt.
I tried my compressed air dust remover and it not only got rid of the sand it also blew out the gasket. I have done this a couple times and it works great and keeps me from possibly cutting the gasket. Ken
Posted By: kenova153 on April 20, 2013 10:47am
Thank you so much for your valued information Gary, Delaware Digger...
Posted By: on March 03, 2014 08:46pm
Great post Gary. I'm looking forward to hitting the beaches of PBC, as soon as I finish reading yours and Andy's CTX 3030 books. Thanks for all the info, Tony
Posted By: penzfan on March 26, 2016 11:32am