Tom(CA) and I have been working a site that we researched that's produced several 1850's - 1860's seated coins, and some rogue early 1900's coins, as well as a variety of period relics.
We tried to get one more trip in before Old Man Winter completely shut us down, and it did in fact shut us down, but not before I finally, got something I've been looking for for a long time, and after watching others find them over the years (I saw Tom dig three!!!), I was starting to think it would never happen.
Well it finally happened, and it turned out to be a good one, an 1865 San Francisco minted Liberty Half Eagle!!
Here she is out of the hole:
Here she is rinsed off:
Here's a video of the hunt:
Less than 100 known, Mintage: 27,612
Although the mintage of the 1865-S is quite a bit higher than the mintages of the S Mint Half Eagles from 1858 to 1864, it compares in overall rarity to the 1858-S, 1860-S and 1863-S and is only slightly less rare than the others. Almost all known examples of this date are well worn with VF and lower being all one can expect to find. The 1865-S ranks second in the entire $5 series according to average grade and I do not know of a specimen that would grade better than EF. The very few specimens that I have seen were rather softly struck and the mintmark was always quite weak.
Thanks for looking, hopefully the next one comes easier
By Steve Herschbach
From the Nokta Impact Software Update page...
Software Update (03.11.2017)
Download : R2_V1.16_V1.14 (System Software V1.16 / LCD Software V1.14)
Updates Made : With this software version, the number of WiFi channels on your detector has been increased and an ''off'’ position has been added (shown with ‘’oF’’ on the screen).
The “off” position is to turn the wireless connection off completely when the wireless headphones are not in use. This saves on battery power and avoids other wireless headphones accidently connecting to the detector.
The new RED EDITION of the 2.4GHz wireless headphones will ONLY work with IMPACT Software version R2_V1.16_V1.14 or later versions.
When you are not using the wireless headphones, keeping the WiFi connection of your detector off is recommended.
IMPORTANT! If you do not have the RED EDITION of the 2.4GHz wireless headphones but an older version and would like to upgrade your detector with this software version, please check the WiFi channel of your detector first and make sure that it is NOT set to channel 4 or 5 but to one of the channels between 0-3 before uploading the software to your detector!
At one time before its release I had been interested in the Nokta Impact. Speculation ran rampant and I got sucked into the vortex. I already owned a Red Racer and a Gold Racer so I knew that Nokta/Makro made good detectors. As so often happens life intrudes on our metal detecting plans. In the last year I have not detected near as much as in years previous so I had shelved my interest in the Impact. Yet recently I have been able to detect more so I went ahead and acquired one.
As usual, I first read the manual(what a geek). While the Impact is a more complex detector than either the Red or Gold Racer, the excellent menu tree and my perusal of the manual had me up and running in short order. At my first opportunity I took the Impact to a location that has had a serious pounding with the Deus, CTX, and who knows how many other detectors. I started detecting with the stock elliptical affixed to the stick. Although the Impact weighs about 4 Lbs. I thought it was nicely balanced so swinging it did not overly fatigue me.
This machine has a mode for about any type of detecting you would want to do but on my 1st day I only tried 4 of them. GEN D, DI99, DI4, and VLX2. After a couple hours trying the different modes and learning the tones on the Impact I had found some non-ferrous items that were missed by all other machines but nothing that was a keeper, mainly miscellaneous bits of brass and copper.
I thought it was time to switch gears so I threw on the 7" elliptical. I had previously been running mainly factory presets in the various modes but with this coil I wanted to gain back some of the depth I knew I would lose with the smaller coil so I bumped the sensitivity up. I worried about increased EMI but with this coil running hotter, EMI did not cause me any problems. I really like this tiny elliptical. It's the perfect size for working in the iron while still getting more coverage than a 5" or 6" round. I took this little football coil into the heaviest iron at the site and once again while I was able to pluck some non-ferrous targets out of that mess I found nothing to write home about(story of my life, LOL).
I did try out the 15" coil. Honestly I am not a big coil guy unless I am swinging a PI and going for max depth. I love working in the iron with VLF's so usually a small coil is welded to the dirt end of whatever machine I am swinging at the time.This 15" is a coil I would use for very specific circumstances only as I would need to wear a harness if I was going to swing it very long. With the 15" mounted up to this machine it was very nose heavy and my arm hurt in no time at all.
The wireless headphones seemed to work well. I did not notice any lag that would affect target recovery. A few times I thought I detected the slightest lag in heavy iron, but it was near the end of the day and honestly I was getting tired and probably a little cranky. Likely my imagination.
At the end of my first day with the Nokta Impact I was favorably impressed with most aspects of the machine. My main gripes were 1) while well balanced it is still 4 Lbs. I am used to a Deus so when you grab this detector you wonder why it can't be lighter. 2) The tones are very digitized sounding. Some people may love these tones, me not so much. 3) The wireless headphones do not have a long enough adjustment band for me to wear them comfortably with a baseball cap. They rode up on my ears and irritated me.
A few days later I decided to do a shoot out between the Impact and some other detectors I have to see how they performed with iron masking. This test was not done to rigorous scientific standards. LOL. Just a test I did for my own information. I can't post all the individual settings and results. I had to come to work on a tugboat and I forgot and left all my notes at home. I will give a quick synopsis of my findings. I hope some one finds it useful but it is just my own opinion. Others are likely to have different results. My friend Chuck(Strick) will post photos of the test for me because he is a good guy and has that down pat.
The machines tested were;
CTX 3030 with 6"R coil.
Red Racer with OOR coil.
Deus with 9" LF coil.
Deus with Elliptical HF coil.
Impact with 4x7" coil.
I made sure the dirt was clean of targets befor flipping over a rubber welcome mat and inserting a 1926 SLQ and a 1855 seated dime into holes in the backing. I did this so the square nails I placed near the coins were slightly elevated over the coins. I manual GBed all the machines except the CTX. The dirt under the mat is kinda hot. It lights up most of the bars on the Deus FE meter.
The results of the test were surprising to me. First that the CTX did so well in comparison to most of the other detectors. On the first scenario( quarter with one small square nail and one big square nail), all the detectors except the Deus with HF coil could generate a diggable signal on 25% +/- of angles swung on the target. The Deus with HF coil could get a diggable signal 360 degrees around the target.
On the second scenario(dime with 3 nails), all the detectors except the Deus with HF coil could not generate a diggable signal from any angle swung. The Deus with HF coil could generate a signal 360 degrees around the target.
As I said before I was a little shocked the CTX did so well in the quarter test scenario compared to most of the other detectors because I have seen the Red Racer, and Deus HF and LF coils eat it alive when comparing signals on live relic digs on un-dug targets in heavy iron. I thought the Red Racer would do better as I have also seen situations in which the little OOR coil on the Red Racer seemed almost magical on targets the Deus LF and other detectors have failed on. As far as the Impact is concerned I felt its performance in these two scenarios on that day in that dirt was was nothing to write home about but to be fair it did as well as any detector besides the Deus with HF coil. I was hoping for more as far as separation/unmasking ability from this detector with the 7" coil onboard. But I must say that a detectorist that I respect very much and I believe is a straight shooter tells me the Impact with 7" coil does beat the Deus with HF coil in some scenarios.
Anyway, on that day in those two scenarios the Deus with HF coil spanked all the others. I am sure other detectorists will have different opinions or results and that is fine by me. I don't own stock in any of the companies manufacturing these machines.
In summation I would say I do like the Impact. It has many fine features and I know I need way more hours on it to leverage all of its capabilities to my advantage. In my world the CTX is my park and lawn machine. The Deus with the HF coil has become my main relic machine for heavy iron. I love the Deus for its light weight, speed, and versatility. But now there is a new kid in town- the Impact. LOL . When I get time I know I will enjoy learning the nuances of this machine. I am looking forward to spending more time in the all-metal modes and some of the other modes I haven't explored yet, like Deep mode.
By Steve Herschbach
On his forum at http://www.dankowskidetectors.com/discussions/read.php?2,121626
This gives a very rare, in fact as far as I know, never before seen inside look at the prototyping process and field test reporting. Thomas Dankowski is a true "engineer nerd" (I say that as a compliment) and so goes to extreme lengths and detail beyond what would normally be seen. His extremely lengthy and copious notes also provide many insights about what to possibly expect from the new Nokta Impact. Keep in mind things changed from the early reports to the final product so things Tom talks about early on change at later dates. Quoting from his thread out of context could cause a lot of misperceptions to arise.
The thread well illustrates something I have observed for some time. When it comes to max depth, standard single frequency induction balance detecting technology is tapped out. Look at the struggle to obtain not another inch but even just another 0.1 inch of depth. The main advantages have come as of late in recovery speed and the ability to separate closely spaced targets. Max depth however is at a standstill. Tom's testing just confirms what I have been seeing for years. It is near impossible to discern more than hair splitting differences for max depth between most top of the line VLF detectors these days.
And now a Report on the Nokta Impact from Keith Southern
And a Report From Ziggy
Report from Lawrenzo - Low-Boy/LCPM
Report from tnsharpshooter
Report from goodmore
Report from Sven1
By Steve Herschbach
Some random notes, and if you don't know what I am talking about as regards some detail of this machine or that I apologize.
Well, I finally updated my XP Deus with 11" coil to the version 4 update. Then I hauled it and the Nokta Impact with 11" and Teknetics G2 with 11" out for several hours of cross checking coin type targets. The G2 is a Gold Bug Pro variant running at 19 kHz and I put it up against the Deus at 18 kHz and Impact at 20 kHz. I acquired the G2 new recently to use specifically as a benchmark unit because I am very familiar with it and because in my opinion it does 19 kHz as well as it can be done. I spent hours swapping machines as the hunt machine, then cross checking the undug targets with the other two. Lots of settings tried, with the main goal to try and find some deep fringe type target or target in trash where any machine can get a clear and definable edge.
Well good luck with that. All I mainly did was impress myself again with what a little powerhouse the Gold Bug Pro/G2 is for the price. It is fairly mineralized ground but not the worst, 5 bars out of 7 on the G2 Fe3O4 meter, ground balance about 86. The only real "aha" moment was in learning the Impact really likes to upscale shallow small foil when in 5 kHz mode, but shoves the id back down to where it should be at 14 kHz or 20 kHz. All the machines like to upscale deeper aluminum in this ground.
All three seemed to get tricked in much the same way on certain targets, like a deep pull tab reading like a dime. For gold hunting purposes I do not mind machines upscaling low conductive targets, and in fact the Impact 5khz mode may have a benefit in nugget detecting because it does want to push light foil (and therefore small gold) higher. But for coin detecting upscaling aluminum is annoying. Pretty much par for the course however for mid to higher single frequency machines.
I found running the Impact in VLX1 was nice as I could flip over just one click to the Gen(D) mixed mode program for a dramatically different read and better target definition. Target id numbers in my ground are slightly higher in the "expanded ferrous" modes like VLX1 and VLX2 compared to DI3 and DI4.
The Deus V4 Gold Field program does seem to pack some extra punch now, be fun to get it out nugget hunting once the elliptical coil hits the streets. The new Deep mode really seems great while the new Hot mode is, shall I say it, interesting. First time I have used the X-Y screens also.
The G2 is what it is, almost no controls but it gets the job done with what it has, and good solid id. Deus and Impact in the other hand have countless options and programs to try, but by and large there is no magic bullet. Three great machines, I can hunt with any of them. It will take a lot more hours to sort it all out.
I find when running machines that are all hitting the VLF Wall that it is the "other things" that get my notice. The Impact is obviously the heavier of the three (4 lbs 4.7 oz / 1946 grams), although very well balanced, so I give the feel on my arm award to the G2 (3 lbs 1.5 oz / 1404 grams) and the Deus (2 lbs 4.0 oz / 1020 grams with 11" coil and control box). The G2 and Deus are neck and neck in the comfort department FOR ME* but the G2 feels ever so slightly better to me, I am guessing because the coil is lighter on the G2. The G2 slays both the Impact and Deus for speaker volume if run without headphones, but on the other hand it has no volume control so would be too loud for some situations.
Been awhile since I ran a Gold Bug Pro / G2 unit and caught myself when switching from disc mode to all metal when cross checking at one point and forgetting that the "big number" changes from target id in disc mode to ground phase in all metal mode, so I was looking at the ground phase instead of the little speedometer thinking it was target id for a couple goes. That one quirk always had me liking the F75 versus the Bug in all metal. I wish Fisher made a 19 kHz F75!
*On arm comfort is a very subjective subject. In particular it has a great deal to do with the size of a persons hands plus length and thickness of their forearm, and their height. You really can't take any one persons word on this subject as it is like buying hiking boots. What fits one person does not fit another. It is not all about detector weight by a long shot. Balance is very important as is the all important hand grip. I am 5' 11" with forearms on the thinner side and smallish hands. For instance, my forearm really bounces around in the large Impact armrest area. The Deus armrest which may be too small for some fits me better. For me personally, the 3.5 lb Teknetics T2 / Fisher F75 is the most comfortable detector I have ever used. It is superbly balanced and something about the hand grip that narrows to the top as it cants forward really makes my hand happy. I can squeeze the armrest shut to fit my arm. So if you find the F75 to be a great fit for you, my comments apply to you. If you hate the T2/F75 setup then what I have to say is less important.