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Howdy Folks... New to the forum


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Howdy folks, I'm new to this forum. I've been prospecting Arizona for over 30 years now. I started out dredging the Lynx back when you could do that sort of thing. Once, many years ago, I dredged a 28 foot deep hole/cave, with a 3 inch dredge, in a rotten limestone crevasse out in California. But mostly, I've been puddle dredging here in Arizona.

About 20 years ago, I purchased a Minelab FT16000. I got frustrated real fast and went back to sniping. Shortly after that I quit prospecting all together. About 2 years ago, after 1 heart attack and a bout with cancer, I was cleaning out my storage unit and came across my old prospecting equipment. That darn feeling came flooding back. I purchased some camping equipment and took my wife, 2 dogs, the 3 inch dredge and drove our Hyundai Elantra down to Stanton for some prospecting. It took a day to hump the dredge 1/4 mile up the creek to the claim. Did I mention my wife is blind? And I am getting older... Anyway I had 3 glorious days of puddle dredging until I had to take the last day for packing everything out... We did manage to get a few small nuggets (the biggest was 38 grains).

After that I dug out the old Minelab. We went down to Stanton a few more times to give it a try. Boy, I never a more frustrating time using that infernal machine. Never could get it to stop squawking or screaming at everything and anything. When I did manage to shut it up... it wouldn't squawk at anything! Feast or famine. I dug everything. More often than not, there was nothing there... not even iron! I knew I had it set wrong. Tried a different setting, This went on day after day.

Sooo, I came across this site the other day. I figured that maybe there would be someone on this forum who would like to go out detecting... and maybe, just maybe, show an old f@rt how to use ths dinosaur of a machine. Thus my post....

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Welcome, the 1600 is I think, the second vlf gold machine that Minelab produced. It cost a bit more than the Goldbug. It is a hip mount and built to take an elephants weight...i am in california so I can't help in person...but-

First read the manual...now read it again...carry it out in the field.

The manual is on Minelab's website if you don't have it.

Install fresh batteries, check all connections for tightness, tape the coil wire to the rod about 8 inches up from the coil-leave some slack...get some headphones...

Get a small nugget or lead -shot...set the sensitivity in the middle, turn it on, set the threshold to barely audible, gently move the coil toward the ground from about 8 inches high, if the sound increase turn the ground-balance counter-clockwise...if it decreases turn the Gb clockwise....do this until you get very little change from top to ground.

put your test piece on ground with no other targets and see if you can detect it...

Anyone that has some vlf experience should be able to help you tune and check the detector...perhaps you might want to join a club...............

good luck


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Thanks Rimshot... I read the online manual but still I'm not sure I'm setting it right or maybe it doesn't work properly... can't tell if it is me or the machine... Could be both..

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Try to come to the outing that Bill is throwing down in Quartzsite on Oct. 26th. Great weather and great country to detect.

Its a great time out with other guys and im sure someone will know the machine.

If not....there are plenty of guys that will help you figure it out and get you going.

Tom H.

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Hey LDM,

I found this link with several pictures you might ought to save in case something goes wrong with your FT. I'm not sure if minelab even services the older detectors anymore. But these pictures would be helpful to an electronic's technician if it ever needed repair work done.



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Hi LDM I had a GT 16000 years ago and found gold with it at Devils nest there by stanton-The GT-ground tracker- came out before the FT-fast tracker-the difference between the 2 was the FT had a faster recovery speed than the GT thus making it able to handle the hot ground better-smoother treshold-come to Bills outing and Im sure there will be someone who can show you a few things or look me up at the outing and I'll dial it in and get it purring for you :head: .Good luck-Mike C... :ph34r2:

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If you can get in contact with Kevin Hoagland he can help you BIG TIME. I "think" he is now associated with Chris Gholson.

Kevin is working with the GPAA these days and is not associated with AZO (Chris Gholson) I talked with Kevin last week and there is a chance he will be joining us at the outing as well if his schedule will allow it. GPAA keeps him pretty busy these days....

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OK, noob here... What is LSD? I see it mentioned all the time... I knew what it was back in the 60's (but that's a whole 'nother story). I'm pretty sure that's not what most of y'all are talkin' about...

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