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Making A Patch Lead For Gpz7000

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Andy, hard to say exactly as I'm kinda spitballing here just for illustrative purposes since these things can be hard to explain with words only for me. These graphs arent actual data points, just my very rough approximation of what I generally find when testing the same nuggets on different coils. I cant photoshop on my phone or I'd make another graph, but my recollection was at the 1 grammer around 11 inches, the 17" out performed everything, and it outperformed the Z14 or equaled it more or less with all 5 nuggets I tested. Granted, a very small test of limited scope.

My 0.07 gram bit, being spongy, crystalline, and presumably high in silver as it came from a pocket, didnt really hit very hot on any coils including the 10" so it's hard to say on the micro dinks how the 17" did, both it and the Z14 sounded off rubbing the coil, but neither could hit it at 1cm. As you have seen, a flatter, denser nugget of the same weight will scream at 1cm though, so take with a grain if salt. But the performance on a similar composition nugget of 0.18 grams at 4 inches, the 17" started to sound sharper to me and over a bit larger area so it hits stuff small enough that I will still pursue it at least and that's all I needed to know.

I'd have to go rewatch my recordings as my memory is fading by now. But on the 5 grammer at 16 inches (also porous, with quartz, semi crystalline) the z14 was almost silent, i could suss out a signal if I knew it was there, while still a really strong target on the 17". I felt as if I could lift the coil 2 to 4 inches above and still get a diggable signal but it was impossible for me to measure exactly. The 17" spiral impressed me a lot with all around sensitivity and a good low end depth punch for 1 gram and bigger, and it was only about 150 grams heavier than the Z14. The 12" spiral impressed me as a slightly hotter, slightly lighter (100 grams, cant remember exactly) slightly smaller Z14 all around replacement coil. Still unsure how it does on salt with the spiral windings, thinking going to some alkali flats around here next weekend and comparing to the Z14. The spiral windings might offset the size decrease when it comes to salt, dunno.

If I could only buy one, for general use, so far it would be the 12" spiral. But the 17x12 seems pretty compelling if that one gets offered for sale. For covering old patches (not in salt) or working old flogged goldfields, the 17" strikes me as the best for my particular purposes in those areas.

I did a noise test using a sound meter and they were all more or less equal, within 1db, based on 2 minutes of average background noise. Which surprised me. The Z14 was the loudest, but not by much and I think it might have had the unfortunate luck of getting a lightning strike in its test. The 10" seemed to make a difference around power lines, but only if it was parallel to the ground, facing up all coils failed equally. I was surprised that overall the 17" wasnt observably louder than the others though when it comes to background EMI.

(Apologies for errors and typing, on my phone at work)

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Jason I have read that latest post three times (oops now two ago). Each time I learn something. Thank you for taking the time (our most precious commodity), for explaining your always-deeper-and-more-clever thinking for us lesser minds. There are a lot of talented posters in here and you are one of them. 

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Thanks Flak. I just have inordinate amounts of time to sit and think about these things, as all I do is work and prospect. Most others have something keeping them busy like...a real social life. ? I got no kids and my dog thinks I'm a bad conversationalist when the subject veers from treats and walks so I assault forum readers with walls of text hahaha

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There are two patch alternatives that may be worth thinking about. Right now I'm sure Minelab wouldn't consider them, but if enough GPZ owners asked for it, well who knows, since there is obviously a demand for coils and we are paying customers after all... So, I'm just going to throw them out there.

  • If the chip is software authenticated and not hardware authenticated in the control box, then we could ask Minelab to sell us a firmware patch that disables the chip authentication routine. It would be based on our unique GPZ serial # so that it could not be copied and used on any other machine so counterfeiting would not be any more possible than it is already. Further, ML could charge some reasonable fee for this patch, say $200, and that way they would make money off the aftermarket still even if they weren't selling licenses. It solves our need for coils without modifcations/patches, gives 3rd parties the ability to build and sell products we want, and it gives Minelab a new income stream. It seems like a win all around for everyone. Not to mention for dealers who would have a new hot product to sell when GPZ sales are petering off.

If that for some reason were not doable then:

  • Minelab sells a set number of ML chipped cables directly to the GPZ owner. Let's say 3 or 5 maximum based on a valid and registered GPZ serial #, and then no more. Again, it's not enough to allow a counterfeit market to thrive. And it solves everyone's problems. $100 a piece and the coil manufacturer could subtract that from the price of a coil since they are not making a cable themselves anymore (you would mail them the ML cable to install onto your new coils), and opening the market up to a lot more sales on top of that.

Both could be done with some clause that says "warranty is no longer valid if you do this" if it would make ML feel better about what they think is a coil that doesn't meet their personal (and unstated, unpublished) standards. And that too would go with the unique GPZ serial # for tracking. And it doesn't matter for many people anyways since their warranties are already no longer valid. It'd be like unlocking or jailbreaking your cellphone.

It kills me to suggest paying ML even more after we paid this much already for a detector that clearly (to me anyways) only appears to cost around $500 to manufacture. Especially since ML didn't come through on a promise making their own coil selection and I understand that argument completely. But there appears to be an impasse - and impasses require compromise, so if we're willing to give some, maybe Minelab would be willing to give a little too? If they are open to compromise then we can create a solution for everyone.

If on the other hand, Minelab makes it clear they won't even accept a compromise...well then. I guess we know where they stand in that case, and where our sympathies should lay when they complain about counterfeiting or anything else we are subsidizing personally with the $10,700 price tag that many of us paid, and even still with the $8,000 MSRP. But it's time we know one way or another IMO. That's where I stand personally. I want to know.

Maybe they have a better idea than mine that would work. Or maybe they give a tangible reason for people on the fence to wait for another product. But it's time for some communication.

So, if there really are enough people interested in getting aftermarket coils - ones that would not require cutting or anything else, maybe we can give them a chance, bombard them with calls so they have to respond with something, and see what they say. I personally am getting kinda tired of guessing and wondering what ML thinks since they never say anything, I think it's time to poke the giant and make it give us a response one way or another so we can go from there. It's more than clear they aren't going to respond if someone doesn't make them... Companies are accountable to wallets, and people are commonly able to get much more massive, monolithic companies in the US to respond with enough people asking the same question.

What do people think about this? Good idea? Bad idea? Don't care enough either way?

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Email bombardment!

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Email would probably be the better option to start, just to be polite. That way they would definitely know what people think and wouldn't feel obligated to respond on the fly or take a thousand calls.

First though, I'm just curious if there really are enough people out there to really drive the point home to ML. I have no idea how many GPZ's were sold so I have no reference frame. Also, most people I meet in the field with a GPZ are not on the forum so its hard to communicate with them and I suspect most don't even know there is another coil option out there now either. If it's really only 10 or 15 of the loudest among us, then I guess ML is probably quiet for a reason, because we aren't big enough to matter. But if it's a large percentage of the GPZ owners, they would have to listen.

Was just kinda curious, I'm writing to them either way since I don't expect them to act off my forum posts alone. But wanted to see what others thought as I was gathering my thoughts.

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jase I bet there are less than 50 ZED owners in the USA who even care....

 and “ us”Aussies don’t give a crap about a bunch of whingin’ ?Yanks!!!!!



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Cool, cool. Stoicism doesn't land a nation on the moon though. :biggrin: 

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Well it might just be me and Jason but I am sure we could raise a ruckus :)   

As for emailing ML, I have done this on two occasions.  Both times I was thanked for the information and assured that they were doing everything they could.  And yet, nothing has changed.  All I have seen is  ML focusing more on VLF machines.  It's not that they do not have the engineers, it's that they are not allocating their time for what we want because it does not fit into their marketing strategy.  But... I am happy to send out another email stressing our concerns. 

I *do* think the people on this forum could make a difference.  Just about any thread with Xcoil in it, gets 1000+ reads.  If half of those are GPZ users, we should be able to make an impact.  Jason's point is valid.  But we need to be contacting the same person.

I used to contact this person: (But I am not even sure if this is a good contact anymore)

Anyone else have a better contact??

Bill Stirling
Global Product Manager

Minelab Electronics Pty Ltd  | 2 Second Ave, Mawson Lakes, SA 5095 
T: +61 8 8238 0828 | F: +61 8 8238 0890 | M: +61 420 442 785 | E: bill.stirling@minelab.com.au

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I think Bill left after ML moved their marketing HQ to Chicago. Not positive, but I remember him saying something like that when I was communicating with him too about various subjects.

Unfortunately anyone I ever talked to at ML seems to be gone now so not sure who to contact, but I'll find out.

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