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Gents, I am thinking about selling most of my gold prospecting equipment and buying a minelab and just be a nugget shooter. I have done pretty well using gas vacs and hand dredges and never had any luck with a detector. However, I have always been using a VLF here in AZ.

The reason I am thinking about switching from prospecting to nugget shooting is because of how much more money nuggets bring compared to small gold. In addition, although fun, prospecting is a lot of hard work compared to walking around with a detector and a pick.

Since there is more small stuff out there then nuggets, does the quantity of small stuff found make up for the difference for what one gets for a nugget which are few and far between?

Should I stick to what I know and what has brought me luck or should I switch over to nugget shooting?

What are your opinions?

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Why not do both?

If you dump your gear your going to wish you hadn't.

Why Minelab?

With all the post about customer service, Over Pricing, My detector money would go some other place.

Without a dought, Nuggets command higher then spot gold prices , but if you have some good small gold spots??????

Just me babbling!

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Why not do both?

If you dump your gear your going to wish you hadn't.

Why Minelab?

With all the post about customer service, Over Pricing, My detector money would go some other place.

Without a dought, Nuggets command higher then spot gold prices , but if you have some good small gold spots??????

Just me babbling!

Homefire

Garrett makes a PI detector, the Infinium, but I have not heard to many great reviews of it.

Is anyone other then minelab making a PI detector?

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Hi Oldsalt,

I do have a question for you and that is, do you like using your present equipment? If so, when I would think twice before getting rid of it. If you hate it and would prefer something else, then you might want to give it a rest first before selling it off. It is surprising just how a person changes their mind with time.

Now, if you have hunted for gold with a VLF and not been too successful, don't be too surprised if the same holds true even if you have one of the latest and greatest units out there. Half the battle is getting the coil over a nugget and the other half is recognizing the fact that you did.

This really isn't much different than what you have to do with the VLF unit you tried. The difference is, the PI is more forgiving when it comes to ignoring many hotrocks and some ground conditions.

Now, if you can well afford a new detector and it won't put you in a bind, then by all means try it to see if you like it. However, it would be better if you can buddy up with a few people who have one of the detectors you prefer to see just how much fun it really is. With luck the owners will let you swing the unit for a while to really find out first hand.

Now, as for the Infinium, you are right there isn't a lot of info out there, but this doesn't mean that people are not using it and having success. No, the Infinium won't compete against the more expensive units and may not do quite as well on some of the smaller stuff, but it does ok.

Again, it would be nice to find someone who has one and see just what they think of it and why.

As for other manufacturers, Whites is now making a PI. Again, it isn't designed to compete with more expensive units but it will hold its own in many places and to better in some.

So, there are choices out there. The key now is to try to determine first if you really want to go this route and then just how you might like one of the different units available.

Regardless of your decision, don't expect that by purchasing a nice shiny new PI that nuggets will begin to jump out at you. It simply doesn't work that way. There are those people who have been lucky and found gold right away, but there also have been people who have spent months to find the first nugget.

So, only you can make that decision. Whatever you decide, I do wish you the best.

Reg

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Reg, that is some really good advice. Perhaps I should buy a PI unit first and see how it goes before selling off my other stuff. If it does not go well, then I can sell the PI and stick to prospecting.

I like getting down in those crevices, but it is just so much stuff to lug around. I am looking at a rigid frame back pack carrier that I may be able to mount my vac to for carrying it in and out of washes. (Need a burro)

I am also wondering if a smaller coil on the Infinium might help out for smaller nuggets since I hear that not detecting smaller nuggets with that unit is the biggest complaint.

Thanks again for the advice. Don

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Before buying a detector I would certainly spend the money to rent one and take it out for a couple of weekends

and give a good try before laying out a bunch for a new one. Just a thought. Good luck and hang on to your old

equipment until you find enough nuggets to pay for your new detector and the twenty pair of boots you have worn

out :innocent0009: :innocent0009: :laught16: But truly good luck regardless of what you choose to do.

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Old Salt...Consider getting one of the older Minelabs like the sd2100 or sd2200 ... They are no longer supported by MineLab so you can probably acquire one of these great detectors very cheaply... Probably as inexpensive as a new or, thanks to Minelab's recent decisions to end customer support, maybe even cheaper than a used VLF... They were very well made in their day and can find the gold as well or sometimes better than the newer expensive models ... :twocents: ..Cheers, Unc

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Hi Old Salt and All

An expensive detector doesn't insure one of finding gold. Many inexpensive vlf detectors are making regular finds in many areas. I'm absolutly convinced that you could suit up the average detectorist with the best possible gear available and yet a fellow with confidence and experience like Montana Bob Dansie swinging a wooden broom handle will find all or most of the gold :hmmmmmm: . Learn what you have and what it's telling you and dig ,Dig, DIG buckets full of trash. Then you will learn the patience of a succesful detectorist. As your finds increase so will your knowledge of what to look for and how to hunt and research given areas. Happy Huntin John B.

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Old Salt, pay serious heed to all said above. I'm running a 4500 and it has paid for itself (got lucky); but battery just died after 2 years w/ a 1 year warranty. $400 for a new one! Would I buy another Minelab? Probably, just as people who buy Caddys, still would buy another, BUT! I'd look seriously into the competition also.

Don't sell what you are used to using and that works! until you are absolutely sure that's a path you don't want to take anymore. If that's the way it is, keep me in mind, with what you want to sell.

Shep

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Guest bedrock bob

My two cents is that one compliments the other. I have found excellent drywashing spots with a VLF detector, and vice versa. I sure get more gold with the drywasher than the VLF or the PI, and never a skunked day. I generally spend my "gold time" detecting, but it gets mighty old after a while, even if you are finding good gold. I suppose that the placer that you are working in would make the decision...some places a detector will get you SQUAT and a drywasher can bring home $100-$200 per day. My claims are like this...No big gold to be found but plenty of fine stuff to be had, plenty of trash, and lots of interference. Other spots you will dig a dump truck full of gravel to make $10 yet can hit 3 DWT with a detector daily.

Another aspect that I have found is this... A fellow generally has a limited amount of ground that he can work, and claim holders are a lot more comfortable with a guest detectorist than a guest drywasher. I dont like folks drywashing on my claim simply because they bring their buddies and leave giant holes everywhere. Instead of prospecting on the weekends I wind up doing reclamation. Even if a detectorist fails to fill his holes it rarely causes a problem. So, a detectorist looking for a spot to shoot nuggets can usually get permission in good spots, where a drywasher might be unwelcome.

I have had great luck with the SD2100 V2. It was not expensive, it goes down deep, and it has paid for itself in two months after the purchase. It definitely has its limitations and drawbacks, and will not perform as well as the VLF in spots with small gold. It is GREAT for what it is good for though. I have yet to tune it so it will get chondrites of any kind, and it makes a heck of a racket about 30% of the time, but it will find 1 DWT nugget at better than 8" very clearly. From my experience a GBII is much better in my neck of the woods, but in California or Arizona where the gold is much larger a PI may be just the ticket.

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