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RafterLazyG RockHounder

Wich detector should I buy?

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Hi, I'm trying to find a decent detector in the $500-$700 range. Does anyone have any advice? I have never purchased on before and figured I do a little research before deciding.

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What are your plans on using the detector for, gold, relics, old coins, meteorites or all the above?

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Will you be hunting in AZ or CONGO or both?

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Try to find a Gold Bug Pro.....

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Or a Tesoro Lobo Super Traq with a full disc. You are trying to fly when ya can't even walk yet. STOP--you are trying to jump into the hardest,most expensive ,dangerous,least rewarding form of detecting there is. Learn how to detect(7 outta 10 give up) before trying to nugget shoot(90+% fail and quit). Do it to learn first and procede ifn' ya want to continue on to nuggetshootn'-John

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Got my first detector from Bill Southern at Gold Basin Nov 2nd 2013. Tesoro Lobo, $650, happy as can be with it. Fell on my butt, with the control box mounted on my belt. Broke the coil cable connectors to the control box. Sent to Tesoro and had it back ten days later, free shipping, plus a bigger coil 12"x10" at a discount, programed to the control box.

It's a joy to use, was saving for a $5,000 Minelab, wasn't far off, now happy with the Lobo, bob

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Loved my ol'TLST for at least 10 years now,along with my GB2(over 15?) and Golden Sabre for over 30 now. Lookn' for more hahaha what a addict I am,as the body falls aprt in age ,and bureauratz restrict.ban/close,I just keep on a swingn' -John :old:

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Some placers have such bad ground that a VLF is worthless to a novice. You will never sort out the howling hot rocks and the clenching of the threshold on the "negative" rocks. In bad ground a PI is the only medicine.

A VLF is slower going because of the noise. But in most ground it can be used well. There is a little longer learning curve with the VLF simply because a lot of spots that aren't targets make sounds. You are trying to sort all that out and it takes time.

Even a very experienced VLF jockey paws at hot ground and digs "ghost" signals once in a while. But the extra sensitivity and target response of the VLF combined with easy pinpointing are virtues. A VLF is the best choice in many spots.

The VLF signal is sweet on gold.Even though the PI may be deeper the signals are often very weak. You really must pay attention if you are to take advantage of PI depth. Almost every nugget I have dug recently has been one of those signals that would have been very easy to overlook. You really have to meet a PI half way to make it go deeper than a VLF on the average sized gold nugget....whatever that is.

A PI covers ground quicker and goes deeper (in many cases). When it says "wee-woo" there is a target there. Once in a while you find some hot rocks but it generally ignores hot ground. It humms along and eliminates most things a VLF stumbles, wails and chatters on.

I use both the VLF and the PI machine. I have patches where you can sit with a VLF and dig 2 grams a day in barely visible specks. You can search for weeks with the Minelab and never get a whisper. I know of another spot that regularly gives up a couple grams for the Minelab but you can't get a VLF coil near the ground without it howling.

So get BOTH. There are lots of great VLF detectors. There are several fine PI units out there too. With both types and some experience you can recover detectable gold from any area that it is possible....that is areas with detectable sized gold within range of the machine. You may as well be using a pie plate and a stick and listening to the iPod if the gold is too deep or non existent. If the machine is busy speaking out on the geology it is not locating nuggets. It is the prospectors job to match the tool to the task.

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As Garimpo ask and Bob said what type of detector you need will be determine by the ground you intend to look for gold, after you answer that question can you get good recommendations on the type of detector you need and then the model it would be best for you too get.

Hoser John also has a very good point, in that a lot of people new to detecting, especially gold detecting give up before finding gold after they get a real taste of how hard it is to find gold or any treasure for that matter.

I would suggest that you find someone to try out their detector first, not necessary for gold, it could be for coins, relics, or gold, etc. so that you get a taste of what detecting is all about to see if you even like doing it, you will, no matter the treasure you seek dig 100s of trash targets for every treasure target in most cases.

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I looked for six months every weekend for a nugget on ground I could drywash and find them. I was GOOD with that detector and could not hear a whisper. Yet if I concentrated a 3" layer Id find a couple nice flakes that should have been detectable. Finally I found a big two grammer in the hole. I searched tediously for several hours but did not score another. The next day I drywashed a 3" layer under where I detected and found several pieces I missed.

I bellowed about the detector being screwed up. In reality my skill level was only good enough to find a whopper at 3" in raked dirt.

To this very day I find nuggets in that spot. And in the spots that I failed to find nuggets that first six months. As I get better I am finding them smaller at the surface and deeper/bigger. Areas I could not score a nugget in ten or fifteen years ago are my most productive today. Being able to consistently find gold represents years of time invested no matter what machine you use...even on excellent ground!

When I went after Glorieta I researched for three months obsessively. I narrowed it down to a few hundred thousand acres and then began hunting. I hunted for about one thousand hours (18 months) before I found one. 18 months later I was finding 5-7 or more a day.

Any time you are going over ground inch by inch looking for something that is scattered around over millions of acres there is a considerable amount of tedium and doubt involved. Most people don't think it is fun although most like to look at the finds. It is not the hobby for a lot of guys.

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Great advice by all above....just want to chime in about the Lobo...great detector and it has iron disc. Some like the GMT do not, it has an iron i.d and you will hear everything. Sometimes, depending on location your hunting, you may want to have the option of silencing the bits of trash and cherry pick coins.The reason I say that, is because HoserJohn is correct, not to be discouraging, BUT..nuggethunting is a tough one. Ask yourself if you have the ability to wonder endlessly searching for an elusive nugget? At the same time, the strong possibility of digging hundreds if not thousands pieces of trash before you ever find that nugget. The Lobo has a life time warranty and you can use it for relics, coins and gold! Anyways ..good luck ..hope you find some good patches along the way.

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I'm partial to the Whites GMT , especially for a 1st detector.
A used one can be had reasonably. It has the ability to do all you want with it.
Gold, meteorites, relic hunting, I have even won top prizes at competition coin hunts with it.
Which ever detector you choose, perserverance is the key. If you are truly interested and intrigued with detecting you will spend the time in the field
and learn what the machine is telling you.
After learning a VLF's general lingo is a better time to ponder wether you want to jump into a P.I. for much more investment capital.
Remember if you want to be a pro poker player, after 2000 hours of live play you may be considered a "novice".
Time spent on the interest you choose delivers results there is no substitute.
Hapy Huntn

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Never found any place a VLF was worthless in over 30 years of using them,prior bfo yes and tr quite a few that required reverse disc. But worthless operators found by the 1,000s since 61...... :head: John

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Hoser John's experience/advise is priceless to anyone searching for info on getting into detecting. :old:
If your not familiar with the terms he used above " bfo" beat frequency oscillator and " tr" transmit receive" also VLF very low frequency.
The BFO and TR were detectors offered in the "early years" of detecting a bit different technology than the current VLF's.
I should think if a person wasn't wanting to jump right into a MULTI THOUSAND dollar P.I. "pulse induction" technology detector they would be doing the right thing purchasing a VLF detector to start learning how to operate and get to understand what a metal detector can do.
A VLF new or used is a correct way to start out as far as I am concerned.
AND they WILL find gold and other precious finds/targets.
Its like when your out lookin for a job, BUT you WANT to be the President of the company right away, sorry you better learn what the companys about and how it operates FIRST. :thumbsupanim
I'd hire the guy that started out sweepin the floors and progressed up the ladder thru the departments of the business for the management position BEFORE I'd hire someone that has "credentials" after their name and just got out of college.
Hapy Huntn

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Never found any place a VLF was worthless in over 30 years of using them,prior bfo yes and tr quite a few that required reverse disc. But worthless operators found by the 1,000s since 61...... :head: John

LOL BFO! Back oh say 1972 it took me months to talk my mom into buying me a Sort of No Name BFO. Crusader it was. 650Khz, I found my first silver quarter just off the front steps of the house the first 30 minutes of use. I was sOOOOOO Screwed. Later I found how to use it to find Black Sand Deposits and that $50.00 detector (A Lot of Money back then) found my first good gold. Yep, After I up graded to a better machine I gutted that one to figure out how it worked. Figured it out and sold the PCB for 30 dollars and I can make one just like it for about Guess What? $50.00.

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I have an sd2100 that I have had (off and on) for seven years. I don't have any problem finding gold in areas that have been hit hard by good detectorists swinging a lot more expensive machine. I honestly found more gold with an old Whites GM2 than in the same time with the Minelab.

The point is that you don't have to go big to do well. You might have to work a little longer and harder with one machine or the other. It is the operators job to get that coil within range of a gold target. Once that job is done it makes little difference what detector you are swinging. If you can't afford the technology you gotta make up for it in elbow grease.

Elbow grease is cheap these days. Too bad you can't turn it into biodiesel.

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Homefire,I feel a lot better now,after reading your post.

I only gave $35.00 for my new Jetco detector in 1970. Still have it too,and

the darn thing still runs.

At the time we thought that we really had something,while we packed those

things all over the country. We spent more time walking our detector,than digging! :nutty:

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I worked cleaning apartment building prior to going to elementary school for great cash as 11 years old. I went down to the local Tandy Craft store(RIP) and bought a kit to construct a Heathkit bfo(RIP) and lived close to Redondo beach pier,hermosa ,PV,and manhattan and they were absolutely rotten with silver coins and gold rings up the wazoo. NO beach cleaning machines in them days. Had to stay away from the water but bought a car,52 Ford hopped up by Temple McFlathead, in less than 6 months with all them gold/silver goodies. Went to jail for repeatedly driving said car at 12 but oh what a ball till my folks found out gettn' me outta jail hahaha :brows: John

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Thank you all for the advice :) the ground I will be working with is all hard as a rock, so anymore advice givin off that would be appreciated :)

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