The general method used when fishing for coalfish over a wreck or reef is to position the boat uptide of the area to be fished, then slowly drift back over it.
The angler drops his bait or lure down to the bottom, then slowly starts to retrieve it. This technique is particularly effective because the shoals of coalfish are often located at various heights within the water column, and it is essential to determine at which height they are feeding. Counting the number of turns of the reel handle to the strike zone can help maximise results.
Bites are usually indicated by a delicate plucking and pulling at the tail of the lure, and it is essential that when you feel this, you maintain exactly the same rate of retrieve, and resist the urge to strike. Keep winding and, eventually, the fish will engulf the lure and dive for the bottom, at which point you set the hook by lifting the rod, and hope that you have correctly set the clutch!