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Tesoro Pantera VLF Discriminator Metal Detector


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The Tesoro Pantera is a VLF discriminating metal detector that was produced around 1990 by Tesoro Electronics. It had a cult following due to its proficiency in extracting non-ferrous targets from dense ferrous trash. Information on it is rare so I am reproducing the material from the catalog page below. Instruction Manual at tesoro.com

tesoro-pantera-metal-detector-banner.jpg

GENERAL DESCRIPTION

The Pantera is a high performance VLF metal detector which is capable of rejecting ground mineralization and buried metallic trash simultaneously. It includes Notch Discrimination so that most common pull tabs can be rejected without losing nickels and small gold rings, or so that only a particular band of desired targets will be detected. Notch Tone Target ID provides a low tone for targets below the Notch Level setting, and a higher tone for targets above the Notch Level setting. Design emphasis was placed on performance and ease of use, while minimizing or eliminating those troublesome adjustments that could cause a loss of performance if not used properly.

The Silent Search Discriminate Mode is based on motion, which means that the search coil must be moving slightly to detect a target. The motion required is so slight that pin-pointing is possible in this mode, however a No Motion pin-point mode is included, which with the 8 inch open center search coil makes pin-pointing a very simple task.

A Ten Turn Ground Adjust control is used, which allows the detector to be adjusted to virtually any type soil. This control allows the operator to get the absolute maximum performance from this detector.

The unit is furnished with an 8 inch open center concentric search coil. We feel that this coil will provide excellent performance in most situations. The open center greatly simplifies pin-pointing.

The detector can be used as a pole mounted arm rest unit, or as a body mount unit. It can be converted easily without tools.

SPECIFICATIONS

Operating Frequency ......................... 12 kHz
Coil Size ............................................. 8" Diameter
Coil Type ............................................ Concentric
Audio Frequency      Hi Tone............. Approx. 800Hz
                                    Low Tone......... Approx. 600Hz
Audio Output .................................... 1½" speaker and
                                                                 ¼" stereo earphone jack
Weight .............................................. Approx. 3½ pounds
Battery Requirements ..................... 12 volts DC
                                                                (8 AA penlight batteries)
Battery Life ...................................... 15-30 hours
Optimum Temperature Range ........ 30° F to 100° F
Optimum Humidity Range ............... 0 to 75% R.H.
Operating Modes.............................. All Metal
                                                                Expanded ED-120 Discriminate
                                                                Notch Reject Discriminate
                                                                Notch Accept Discriminate

 

Click on catalog image below for larger view.....

tesoro pantera-metal-detector-catalog-page.jpg

tesoro-pantera-metal-detector-side-view.jpg

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2 hours ago, Steve Herschbach said:

The Pantera is a high performance VLF metal detector which is capable of rejecting ground mineralization and buried metallic trash simultaneously. It includes Notch Discrimination so that most common pull tabs can be rejected without losing nickels and small gold rings, or so that only a particular band of desired targets will be detected. Notch Tone Target ID provides a low tone for targets below the Notch Level setting, and a higher tone for targets above the Notch Level setting.

So notch discrimination was available in ~1990?  Was this analog or digital?

3 1/2 pounds puts it near/at the top edge of comfort, as long as it's ergonomically balanced.  Quite the detector and shows how good Tesoro was in its heyday, and how far they fell in recent years.  😢

 

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The Pantera is an analog machine.

NOTCH MODE SWITCH. This toggle switch is used to select the function of the notch filter in the discriminator circuitry. In the reject mode, the target encompassed by the notch will be rejected, and in the accept mode, only those targets encompassed by the notch will be detected. The notch width is factory set to be just wide enough to include the common pull tabs and lift tabs, since rejecting these objects will be its primary use. In the center position, the notch filter is disabled, so that it has no effect on the discriminate circuit.

NOTCH LEVEL CONTROL. This control is used to adjust the notch filter response to the desired target level when using the notch discriminate modes. The notch level control should always be set higher than the discriminate level by at least one full increment for proper operation.

This control also can serve as a tone control if the notch filter is not used, since all targets below the notch level are indicated by a lower audio tone than those above the notch setting. Setting the control at '0' will provide the higher audio tone for all targets detected in the Discriminate mode while setting it at maximum would provide the lower audio tone.

9E8CED36-8301-4717-8203-60D8126B66CE.jpeg

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swung a Tesoro Golden Sabre II for 22yrs that is almost identical with the notch, 2 tones, etc.  Bought it new in '92. Dug a LOT of old coins with it.  Sold it last yr as I got spoiled with the eTrac and all the info it gives (more deep coins and less trash).  That GSII was definitely a tuff old warhorse....!!!!!!

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Hello Steve,

The Panther is a good notch detector,  a few years back found one from the UK. Very clean and in excellent working condition, the female seller used it as a relic detector. Lacks depth, but for gold jewelry and clad one doesn’t need depth.

Recently,  Picked up a new never used Golden uMax new tone model. The owner never used it and had it hanging on a wall, even came with a new CleanSweep coil never swept across a blade of grass.

I’ll be using both here shortly, hesitant with using the Cleansweep.  Never tried one, may sell it to recoup what I got into the Golden. 

I’ll share future finds and experiences here, using both Pantera and Golden uMax. Can get out and hunt now,  had knee issues recently and had surgery on one.

Take care,

Paul

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Don’t be afraid of the Cleansweep Paul, it’s my second favorite coil after the Bigfoot for jewelry detecting. Hope you are healing up well... time is catching up with us! :smile:

I mainly decided to post about the Pantera to perk the Tesoro Forum up. I figured with other forums abandoning them we would see more action here but I guess there is not that much to say about detectors people have owned for a long time.

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Hi Steve. 

I'm attaching the Pantera field test to add to your data collection.   

If you want the schematic, I have a hand drawn one.

HH

MikePantera Field Test.pdf

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Definitely slow on this forum Steve, but not that surprising with them going under.  Definitely nothing new coming out and those of us that still use them know what tasks we like them for.   It’s still a shame that they are done, even though I am mainly swinging my Equinox these days I will always have a Mojave or Compadre for getting the tiny bits of broken gold jewelry out of totlots and around equipment on fitness trails!!  Probably should keep that part secret because it is surprising how much there is!!!  The cleansweep still gets put on the Mojave for sports fields though.  It just covers the ground quicker and with the sensitivity low I’ve become confident in ignoring those iffy deep trash sounds that are always a struggle with higher powered “modern” detectors.   
 

Any way.....viva Tesoro!!!!!   They’ve found me loads of goodies and lord willing they will serve me for the rest of my life time!!! 
 

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On 10/2/2019 at 7:29 AM, Steve Herschbach said:

Don’t be afraid of the Cleansweep Paul, it’s my second favorite coil after the Bigfoot for jewelry detecting. Hope you are healing up well... time is catching up with us! :smile:

I mainly decided to post about the Pantera to perk the Tesoro Forum up. I figured with other forums abandoning them we would see more action here but I guess there is not that much to say about detectors people have owned for a long time.

Hello Steve,

I remember reading you enjoyed the Cleansweep coil, a few others out there highly recommend one.

Okay,  you talked me into keeping mine. Might as well break it in this week, just mounted it onto to Golden uMax. 

Since this thread is on the Pantera,  there is one thing I like with the Pantera other Tesoro’s don’t do. Targets near the surface overload with all of my other Tesoro’s, have to lift the coil above the surface target to get the audio to not give that overload statically audio sound. With the Pantera, surface targets don’t give off this overload statically sound.   

Here is a picture of the Pantera and Golden uMax, hopefully get out tomorrow before work for an hour or so.  

Take care Steve,

Paul

67445749-A5F9-4C78-AC27-C70BA772607C.jpeg

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