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  1. About 80 hours of detecting in Alaska with the GPX 6000 and Garrett 24K, gold cleaned by shaking in water with soap. 1.86 Troy ounces total, much of it found by using my "scrape and detect" methodology. Garrett Goldmaster 24K at work
    55 points
  2. Had a great trip on business, visiting family, and some remote prospecting. Got a couple ounces of chunky stuff with Minelab 6000 and Garrett 24K. Weather a bit cool and wet, but otherwise all went well. Thank you Hugh for watching over things. It got easier I suppose after the site went down! That I never considered as a real possibility as it’s only happened a few times in eight years. Oh well, back up again now. I’m back on the job here again daily, but will be a bit scarce on posts as I have quite a bit going on this fall. But when needed, I’ll be there. I hope you’ve all got good things going on in your respective worlds, and thanks for making the forum what it is.
    52 points
  3. Day one... I headed to the hills this morning to beat the heat and log a few hours behind the control pod of Minelabs' latest offering, the exciting new GPX 6000. Hiking up and down the hills with this featherweight P.I. nugget detector is pure bliss after lugging the GPZ 7000 around for the past 6 years...has it been so long?! Armed with the 11-inch GPX mono coil, I targeted an old nugget patch that I had carefully gridded many times in the past with several detectors, including the GPX-5000, Gold Monster and GPZ 7000. With nearby power lines, operating at a Manual Sensitivity of 10 or Auto+ proved a bit too chattery and required excessive Noise Cancel delays that became rather irksome after awhile. Backing the Sensitivity to 7 smoothed things out considerably without any noticeable loss of performance, and if I got an iffy target response, a quick jump to 10 would provide a definitive yes or no. After digging a few trash targets, the first “nugget” that the GPX 6000 hit was a 0.04 of a gram surface screamer, and the next couple of nuggets were small and shallow; nothing surprising. But how did the Gold Monster miss these? Must not have got that little 5-inch Monster coil directly over them.🤔 It was the next 3 targets that really blew my mind, however... By late afternoon, the temps were soaring into the mid-90's, and despite a nice breeze, it was becoming a tad uncomfortable, and I was thinking about calling it a day. That was when the GPX 6000 sounded off with a sweet, mellow and deep sounding target response. A few scrapes with the pick exposed the underlying bedrock, and somewhere - in a crevice, no doubt - a golden treasure awaited to be uncovered...or so I hoped...could just as easily be a bit of square nail, a bullet or boot tack.😒 Blasting a few inches into the bedrock with the pick got the target out - a nice little golden picker in the scoop. 🙂 After backfilling the dig hole, just one swing of the detector revealed another soft, mellow hit a mere foot away. Same scenario: a small golden goody a few inches deep in a bedrock crevice. Then, about another 4 feet away, a faint response. Quickly jacking the Sensitivity from 7 to 10 brightened the signal a bit, so I began digging about 6 inches through a layer of gravels before hitting bedrock and a rather thick tree root. A little more pick work and pinpointing with the edge of the coil located the target in a crevice right next to the root. This one was deep; nearing the 12-inch mark, the target was finally out, and it was screaming off of the coil edge! A quick sift with the scoop uncovered a hefty 1.34 gram nugget. How the GPZ 7000 missed this beauty, I'll never know...it's a head scratcher.😅 Time to call it quits for the day on that high note, for sure! I'll be at it again tomorrow, this time with the GPX 14 DD coil in EMI Cancel Mode; should be able to run flat out in Auto+ Sensitivity with the threshold as smooth as glass.
    50 points
  4. 13 oz @ 24" with the 6000 11" coil. Who said it was just a flys*t detector? :) With property owner John: Ended up 10 ozs after the acid bath with approximately an oz in detached bits-
    48 points
  5. Yesterday JW and I went for another gold hunt to the same place we'd been going on all the previous missions I've posted about in the past couple of weeks, I've always liked this spot, it's been my favourite. You do deal with a lot of junk here though, mostly shutgun pellets but I guess it's good practice for me sorting the junk from the gold. I felt like I was up to a bigger walk this time, JW invited me up to the spot he did last time we were at this place, If you recall I stayed right at the start and spent the day in a very small area last time while JW went for a stroll far further into the area and he managed to find 8 nuggets. This a photo of the 8 nuggets JW found in the area on the previous day when I stayed at the entrance to the area. It seemed a worthwhile spot for me to take on a big walk to get to, my broken foot seems to never feel better, it's been a long time now and it feels no better than it did at the start, although it has its good days and bad days and it felt like it was going to be a good day. We walked up to this area and JW showed me around and told me where he'd found some nuggets in the past, I hadn't been here for a couple of years back when I was using my GPX 4500 and I found nothing with it in this spot from memory. So we fired up our weapons and off we went. I headed up higher and JW went off to the right and down from where we stored our packs, the higher ground looked alright to me although my detector was nutting off constantly on pellets straight away, big pellets like someone had been hunting elephants in the area, only NZ doesn't have elephants, but the really large size rusty magnetic pellets, I don't normally encounter these sort often, usually it's the tiny little lead ones. They were absolutely everywhere and driving me mad. I kept going in the area anyway and then I encountered a target noise that was not like the others, a softer quieter sweeter sound, a few scrapes to remove the chances of it being a small lead near surface pellet and the signal improved, I kept digging and digging and the signal was better and better, this was getting exciting although I'd dug so much junk since getting here I had it in my head it's 90% chance some sort of junk, maybe a boot tack or something so I wasn't overly concerned about doing any video. Once I was fairly deep I decided it might be time to flick on the phones camera just in case and I'm glad I did, now I have some memories of my second biggest ever nugget find! Over a gram nuggets or even gram size nuggets are an extreme rarity here, so it's a happy day when you score a gram size nugget, this one however was a lot bigger than a gram. This is it's hole, and if you'll see the video you'll see it wasn't a fisherman's story about the size of his fish catch, exaggerating the depth on the hole, this is precisely the depth of the nugget. A beauty, and very odd for a NZ nugget based off what I've found before, mine are generally always pretty smooth, this one was a chunky rough looking nugget, more like the nuggets found in Australia. And here is the video, I'm so annoyed I didn't film the entire thing from the start as I like having videos for my future watching of my nugget finds, especially when it's a nugget out of the ordinary for me. Oh well, at least I got some of it on video. Pretty happy with this one, my second biggest nugget so far and only just behind my biggest by .1 of a gram. I ran down to show JW, we were both pretty shocked a nugget this size was found here. I now had a dilemma, the likelihood of me finding a nugget now was low, usually if I find a nugget right at the start of the day I find no more 😛 Hours passed and exactly that, plenty of junk and no more nuggets, I had some lunch and figured I'd move out of the bigger nugget area and see if I can find something down lower on the hillside. I didn't really want to walk too much on steep ground with my foot but a man's gotta do what a man's gotta do. At this point JW had found one nugget also from memory so I didn't think my hopes would be too high down lower on the slope where he was but that's gold for you, you never know. It wasn't even 20 minute and there it was, my second nugget. A nice easy signal, the 8" loves small gold, even a bit of gold weighing 0.03 of a gram is a booming signal compared to a very small lead pellet. This piece wasn't exactly small though, well for me 🙂 within a few steps of that nugget I found another one almost straight away, another easy target signal. Here is what the ground looks like we were hunting, from a cut out the old timers had done. Things dried up again for a while now and JW appeared crossing over a ridge into sight, he was heading back to his bag for lunch so I decided I'd go sit with him and have a break, we had a look at the nugget again after the initial shock had passed and at this point he had 3 little nuggets with his GPX 6000, so we were sitting on 3 each at this point. his were similar size to my smaller two. Back at it, this time we both just hung around near our bags for a bit where I'd just found the two nuggets, and after an hour or so of nothing we gradually moved on, I decided I'd go back a fair bit in the direction of the car so I took our bags to save us having to go back for them as JW was slowly heading in that direction too. I went for a walk to some thyme bushes on the downward slope hoping the little 8" would give me an advantage over anyone else who had detected there as the spaces between the bushes are so small it takes a small coil to get between them and the 8" had done extremely well doing this in the past, it slides between the bushes no problems. I don't know why I didn't take a photo of them. I was only in the bushes for 20 minutes and digging plenty of pellets and junk and then I had a signal that seemed different to the others, I scraped away the grass and could clearly see I was on some bedrock. The signal was pretty good, unmistakable, although tiny it was a nice little bit of gold. It was my smallest bit of the day so I wanted to see how it responded on JW's GPX 6000 to compare it in my head to how it responded with my GPZ and 8" X-coil. I was very satisfied with how good the target response was on my GPZ so it would have been good to compare, I walked over to where JW was to find him fiddling with his GPX unplugging the coil and removing the battery and so on, he said it was doing its usual EMI thing where he just turns it off and does a factory reset and it seems to clear up the EMI, however this time when he switched it off and on again it came up with an error so he was unplugging everything and making sure it was all secure in an attempt to revive it. After many attempts it was clear the thing had died. Either the coil or the detector. We took a video of it which you can see here. This put a bit of a downer on what was otherwise an excellent day. Minelab have really outdone themselves with the build quality of the GPX 6000, for the price things are not too great I think, it's pretty disappointing. I told JW we should just leave now, I didn't want to continue with him having to sit around and wait for me to finish, it was sad enough his detector died without having to sit around watching me have all the fun so we left to go get some Chinese food on the way home, we got there right as the place opened for dinner so the buffet had all the good stuff! We got ourselves an excellent meal. Once we got back to JW's house we tried another coil on the detector and it worked, so it was the 11" coil that failed. My theory is the security chip in the coil has failed, my reason for this is the detector was working fine until it was turned off, so a fault with the windings or cable connection or anything like that is HIGHLY unlikely to be the problem, the EMI he was getting that prompted him to turn it off and on was nothing out of the ordinary, he does this many times during a detecting session to fix the EMI when a noise cancel doesn't seem to do it. When the detector was turned off and on it uses that chip to verify the coil, if the chips dead the detector will error exactly like what's happened. A bit of a downer on what was a good day. JW ended up with his 3 little nuggets, I can't remember his weights but his total was about .3 of a gram from memory, I'll put up his total photo if he sends it through on email, he normally sends me his photo of gold weights. We also weighed my gold at JW's house, I wanted to know if my big one was my biggest ever, it was close. The little one I wanted to check and compare with the 6000 came up as 0.03 on JW's scales, when I arrived home checked the weights on my scales as they're more accurate and it came up slightly heavier than on his. It's not my smallest GPZ nugget which is 0.023 of a gram on my scales but it's getting down there. It's heavier than it looked. Here is my junk for the day lots of tiny little metal shards, they were so annoying as they're a great signal. I think I lost a fair few pellets out of my pocket, it happens pulling my scoop in and out all day. And my days total My best day in about a year I'd guess, pretty sad about JW's GPX though, now he's got the hassles of dealing with the warranty.
    46 points
  6. I took a quick day trip to an old hydraulic mine since the itch needed scratching. It was 22f (-5c) when I put my backpack on and started up the gut. Definitely a long Johns and layers day! First signal was a little .8g nugget about 5 inches down. I was focusing on little islands of red dirt the old timers missed. This nugget was sitting right on bedrock. The steep ground was frozen solid so it made climbing very hazardous. I had to cut steps into the hillside to make progress in some areas. And when it got above freezing in the afternoon the ice turned to slick mud. I ended up on my ass several times which I’m sure the animals enjoyed. Second nugget was shallow and encased in a sheet of frozen red dirt! I had to use my pick to break it into pieces to find the nugget like a piece of conglomerate. First time finding an ice nugget! This one was smaller and rougher. Found with the GPX6000 in Josephine County, Oregon.
    46 points
  7. After helping Gerry train a fabulous group of customers with their new gold detectors at Rye Patch in northern Nevada, I finally got the chance to get down and dirty with my GPX-6000 on some of the old hammered patches in the region's goldfields during the last couple weeks or so. For me to say that I'm impressed with the 6k's performance at these locations would have to be the understatement of the year; some were like detecting a brand new patch, just with smaller nuggets. Based on my finds, the GPX 6000 seems to be lighting up gold of certain sizes, depths, densities, textures and alloys that have eluded other gold detectors, primarily small nuggets that were too deep for the previous tech. I've also noticed digging more electrum (silver-gold alloy) nuggets with the 6k, as well as surprisingly shallow, larger dinks that had me scratching my head in disbelief that the GPZ 7000 didn’t ping them.🤷‍♂️ All up, 131 nuggets with a combined weight of 3/4 ounce troy: The frost is hitting the windshield in the mornings now, so I'm off to warmer weather and more golden goodies in the sunny goldfields of Arizona! 😎 So long, Rye Patch, and thanks for all the nuggets.
    44 points
  8. I was told the title needed to be revised. 🙂 SG is 10.04 OZT. Total 17 OZT. GPZ 7000. Humboldt Co Nevada
    44 points
  9. I also am back from Alaska, although its from a different part of the state than Steve was in. I am back from Gold King Creek, about 50 miles south of Fairbanks. It was quite an adventure. They run an operation for tourists as well as running a regular commercial scale operation at the same time. I did metal detecting and shoveled gravel into a highbanker. Shoveling gravel is taxing and with my back still only at about 90% from my car accident, after a couple weeks of shoveling all day my back was in sore shape. I balanced off shoveling by metal detecting. I found 179 pieces of gold while I was there, but the total weight for all my detected gold was only 5.2 grams. The gold from Gold King is small (as is common for many Alaska placers). Now don't get me wrong, I had a ball detecting all of those 179 pieces, and there are a few rare larger bits in the area. One lady found a nugget of about 3.5 grams before we arrived with an SDC 2300 - very unusual. I think the biggest the commercial operator got while I was there was about a gram, and that is from 65 ounces he produced in the two weeks I was there. My biggest was about 0.2 grams, and average for the 179 pieces was about 0.03 grams. That's a testimony to the sensitivity of the GM 1000. I did get some good gold by shoveling into the highbanker also. The gold does not occur on a real bedrock but on a hardpan of deep clay, real bed rock is 180 feet down and likely has no significant gold ( based on where the gold is coming from). Overall, I think it was a big success, I really enjoyed myself, the folks who went in with me had a great time, and I got to meet a lot of new folks, including some of the staff who were avid detector prospectors from Arizona. On trying to depart, I got stuck there for a day by low fog - which prevents planes from flying in. Very normal for an Alaskan prospecting adventure. I've now taken care of the things I need to do for the ICMJ magazine and am getting back on track to take care of all the other things that go with life here in the lower 48. There will be an article in the ICMJ on it with a lot more detail for those who subscribe, and I have a video about working on hardpan or false bedrock on my Youtube channel.
    43 points
  10. I finally did it, I found a gold coin a few hours ago today while detecting a grassy area with my XP Deus 2 not too far distant from where people traveled by train in years past. I was using the P4 Fast program at the time but had used P1 General earlier in the day. This place has seen use for at least 100 years and has a mix of old iron like square nails, some more modern iron, and lots of modern aluminum junk to wade through. I've been slowly going through this place digging a lot of pulltab and zinc penny range signals in the hopes of scoring some gold jewelry. The coin rang up at a solid "71" ID# and was about 3 inches deep and sounded loud in the square tones audio. Thank goodness I didn't scratch it as I cut a shallow plug! I feel fortunate to have recovered this $2.50 gold piece, as I know some of you have searched for far more years and put in a lot more effort overall than I have and not scored one yet. It "only" took me 28 years of detecting, but it finally happened. Good luck to you all and happy hunting!
    42 points
  11. Something pleasant to look at on these chilly days of January. 42 Gold rings ..3 misc Golds..268 grams total.. 188 Silvers..mostly coins, Class rings pushed the weight this year and I did find one small gold chain but only because it had a pendent on it....Excalibur found most of the treasures but the AQ came on strong the last month. Missed hunting 6 months ....Blessed to be alive !! ........Hoping to see the water more in 2022. Come on Spring.. Good Luck to everyone and Be safe.. Couple golds missing / family.
    42 points
  12. Just a FYI for people that I am taking an extended break for a long trip home to Alaska. Like many I was cooped up the entire last year, had things I wanted get derailed, and then a giant pile of stuff came up in the last few months. I've obviously been edgy and erratic in posting, and so I need to step away for a bit. Where I am going I really have no choice, and that is good. Chase Goldman is a very active participant who posts mostly on the coin and relic forums. He has graciously offered to help keep spammers at bay. Other than that, you all are great folks, I'm sure the forum will be fine. Might even take a turn for the better in my absence, so it will be interesting to see how it goes, and where you all take it. I'll still be around a for awhile, but will stay in the background, as I have to get everything totally dialed before I depart. You all have a great summer, get lots of gold.... see you later! Steve H P.S. thanks again Chase for helping enable my absence with no worries - sending good finds karma your way!!
    42 points
  13. We had a 3 party hunt scheduled Condor, LuckyLarry and myself. I set sail East Bound and down on I-80 to Rye Patch from Reno. I texted the Boyz and received a text back from Condor that his Truck was sick and couldn’t make this trip! Well just meant more Rib Eyes on my dinner plate! LuckyLarry, was on his way from Elko to Rye Patch and the timing was perfect he followed me in to our camp site! Temperature Gauge was a solid 97 at the 3 O’Clock hour. Larry, hunted out here in the Hey Days of Rye Patch. He was just learning Gold Detecting back then and scored many nice nuggets! But, ended up being a Top Notch Relic Hunter. That’s how we met. We met on the Internet with me needing some old Relic’s ID. He was my go to guy to tell me the history of anything I’d dig up in the Goldfields of California. Of course, I avoided these extra trashy old camp sites and would pass the location to Larry for his Relic hunts when he traveled to California. We set up camp and hopped into my RZR Buggy into the heat to swing our 6000’s on my old patches. Finding left over nuggets that our older models missed, but the heat! Had to hit a 100 before some clouds moved in to cool things down! Them clouds had rain and in front of them was the wind. Headed back to Camp to beat the rain, as I left my Trucks Windows half open which was the way the wind and rain was blowing in. Made it back to camp wet Windows up with a gust of wind that had to be over 50 mph. Well early to bed with showers on and off and the next morning with more rain to heavy to detect in which gave us time to eat some cookies and for me to remember where some more old patches where at to swing on. Gone for 4-Days with 2 1/2 days of good detecting! We ended up with 20 Dinks each! Two Lucky 🍀 guys with plenty of smiles for our efforts fighting Mother Natures last blasts of Summer! I figure I’m now about 80% done with having the 6000 over our old patches in Rye Patch. I’m sure we left gold in the patches we hunted for further visits…never can get them all and every day is a different day! Until the next Hunt! LuckyLundy
    41 points
  14. On Sunday JW and I went back to one of our old detecting spots, it's the place I've been to the most and have detected it with various detectors all the way back to my GPX 4500 and Gold Monster and JW goes much further back than that with his detectors. It seems no matter how hard I try there is always more gold to be found in this spot, especially when new detectors or coils are involved. The place is heavily covered in shotgun pellets and unless you've got extreme patience you're going to miss some tiny gold by ignoring the small surface pellets which means you'll likely ignore the smaller surface bits of gold also. I used to dig and recover everything that beeped but I've lost patience for that in this spot, remarkably JW did just that on this day, he had a good handful of pellets where as by rejecting everything that moved in the first couple of pick scrapes I only ended up with about 10 pellets all day, I certainly detected a hundred or more though. It's good going detecting with JW, you can't buy experience and he has a lot of it so I always end up learning quite a bit on days detecting with him, he's a wealth of knowledge on the local areas. As I was seeing the GPX 6000 for the first time I took along my little test sticks that Geotech sent me for testing my QED on shotgun pellets to compare the result to other coils and detectors. I only bothered with the #9 and #6 lead shot as they especially the #9 are the most difficult for detectors to pick up. So JW turned on his GPX with the 11" Mono coil and we went to see how it responds on those pellets, it wasn't meant as a scientific test I just wanted to get an idea of how the GPX compares to the 12" CC and obviously other coils I'm using. Unfortunately the GPX was a bit unstable when first turned on, JW has been normally using headphones with it and not the speaker but we needed to use the speaker so we could both hear the response. A few retunes and me turning my phone off helped a bit but it wasn't overly stable, we pressed on and tested anyway in manual and auto+ and the results were somewhat of a surprise to me and not what I was expecting. Unfortunately the little #9 pellet fell off the stick into grass somewhere in the area as I was walking around so not as much testing was done as I would have liked to have done. I guess I'd hyped the GPX 6000 up in my head to be much better than it ended up being by comparison to what I've got and I guess I did this due to all the talk of Gold Monster type sensitivity with it, there is no chance its as sensitive on tiny gold as a GM, it is however like a supercharged GM once the gold is a bit bigger. I'm pretty confident with my current setup and coils along with the fact I can run in HY/Normal with a high gain and not be troubled by EMI so I'm really not missing much, if anything at all so I'm quite glad I didn't let my excitement of a new product make me jump onboard with a GPX prior to at least seeing one in action. I really don't think I need one now so that saves me some money, the light weight was fantastic though, it felt like a VLF in weight, although it seemed to me build strength has suffered a bit because of the weight, it's lost that solid feel of the GPZ. It's not that I don't like the GPX, I thought it was fantastic, I just don't see the cost / benefit ratio adding up at all. In saying all of that the difference for someone in hotter soils could be very different, the GPZ performance in difficult on small gold as is not near the performance it has in normal so the 6000 may well shine then, the difference in mild soils is less telling especially with the coils I have to use on my 7000. I'll wait and see what future coils add to the 6000 and revisit the idea of getting one then if necessary, I am sure JW will want to get his hands on the 10x6" X-coil once it's released. We decided enough messing around and started detecting, I just turned on the detector right where we dumped our backpacks and started detecting there, I figured I may even find the missing #9 pellet, and it was not even a couple of minutes and I had a target, it survived a couple of pick scrapes so I was confident it was less likely to be pellet and started to get a bit excited, surely not, gold already? It did turn out to be a little nugget. My photography skills let me down, it's sitting o nthe coil above the O in X-coils 🙂 I went over and saw JW and showed him the nugget, he was about 50 meters away I guess, we were both surprised I got one already, especially with how often we have detected this spot. He was in the middle of recovering a shotgun pellet at the time with the 11" Coil still on. I went back to the spot and detecting around it hoping there might be another one, and there was! This time I was more prepared as once I was confident it wasn't a surface pellet I turned on the video on my phone to capture it. I'm no Hollywood producer, so you'll have to put up with my rudimentary video skills, I didn't do any editing just stitched a couple of parts together to make it a single video. I'm pretty sure this is the photo to match the video 🙂 and the nugget. I kept detecting around the little area and had a 3rd target, this is getting weird, I just don't understand how we both have missed these in the past, that's gold prospecting for you. As I was again confident I had a nugget I also filmed this one. This was the one I think, hopefully the photos match up to the video, it's hard to tell as all the gold bits look similar size 🙂 This is the area my first 3 pieces came from, the hole in the front of the photo is the second piece I found, the pick is where the 3rd piece was and the second bit was behind that rose bush between where the pick is and the big rock. They're all sort of running down hill from each other. At the end of this video I looked up and showed the dirty great big high voltage transmission lines above us, these seemed to act up a bit on the GPX where as I was completely immune to them with the GPZ, JW had all three GPX coils with him to try them out at this spot, he'd never even used the 17" or 14" DD before and the 17" felt a bit heavy without a harness which he didn't have with him and also acted up more with the EMI. After the morning part of the day and him sifting through a handful of shotgun pellets and finding 3 little bits of gold he decided he'd give the 14" DD a go after lunch. He was very dedicated, digging so many pellets to get his bits of gold where as I was ignoring all these little surface to a couple of inch type targets aiming instead for deeper targets, I wasn't hunting the bedrock instead going for the grassy deeper soil areas. We were discussing the depth advantage these Concentric coils give us so I wanted to stay off bedrock and hunt the deeper ground hoping to find something. We were now on 3 nuggets each and decided we'd have some lunch. Once the DD was on his GPX is really quietened down, it ran really nice, the performance on small gold seemed good too, and we were able to detect near each other without the GPX being bothered by it, the GPZ is no issue, especially with the Concentic coils. I'd just found my next piece of gold and walked over to JW who was now able to detect quite close to me and he was digging a target, his first deeper bit of the day and it was with the DD, a similar size to my pieces, it was good to watch the recovery. You'll see someones quite substantial dig hole just below my smaller dig hole where my coil is sitting, this was my next nugget. My smallest bit of the day, a reasonable depth too, and the target really stood out, unmistakable. Whoever dug the hole below it missed this one. Hard to see the dig hole in the photo. Here is a photo of the power lines, it's a shame they look a lot further away in the photo than they really are. It's only a short walk up to them, I once found a piece of gold right under them with my Gold Monster, I've not taken any of the Concentric coils up under them but I should, it handles other power lines fine and I may find gold others have missed with detectors that struggle more under them. Things were starting to dry up for both of us now, we had 4 nuggets each at this stage so we stopped for a drink and snack and decided we would walk over a little gully into an area I haven't detected as much, I'd been over there with my Equinox some time ago, I don't recall finding anything except a zillion pellets. As I was largely ignoring shallow targets I was likely missing some small gold but I wasn't worried about that, it was too hot to recover so many targets when almost all of them would be pellets, I admired JW's determination doing that, his pellet collection was getting huge. I then had a quite shallow target, but it was not a pellet, I thought it might be a boot tack as it was a loud booming signal. I figured I'd recover it as you never know, at least it's not going to be a pellet. The hole was quite shallow, and it turned out to be a bit of gold, glad I dug that one. It really screamed too. Around a similar time JW had found his 5th nugget too, we were neck and neck all day, once one was ahead the other caught up, the challenge of keeping up with JW on gold finds works as a good motivator to me, the little competition is pretty fun but I rarely could keep up with him, this time I managed to. Anyway, here are the weights of mine This is the second last nugget I found, the smallest one of the day which is no surprise as I was avoiding shallow targets on purpose, it was the one that had someone elses dig hole just below it. This is quite funny, two the exact same weight, vastly different looking nuggets though. and my total, almost a gram! And here are JW's nuggets, mostly smaller than mine with him targeting those surface targets but it's hard to tell in the photo, we checked his smallest one on my coil and I was able to get it. We just put all his nuggets on the DD coil, 3 of them were found with the 11" Mono. The biggest one was with the DD. So all in all a fun day out, and we both managed to get some nuggets in a place that we didn't expect to really get anything much if at all so can't complain about that. These last two photos are just some shots of the area we were detecting, the grass is quite an annoyance but smaller coils handle it fine, I just use the GPZ to squish it down as I run over it, JW has a bit of trouble with the shaft twisting on the GPX doing that sort of thing.
    40 points
  15. Drove down Monday and met up with Chet; we wanted to try out our new 6000s on some hammered patches, just to make sure I wouldn’t have “Buyer’s Remorse” after trading in my 7000. I got there about noon, and Chet had been out hunting in the morning. He had marked two targets in the ground so I could hear them too when I got there. One was in a scrape and the other a bit outside....hmmm? Likely iron crap in this pounded area we thought. Dug them out, and he had just found his first 2 gpx6000 nuggets...beautiful character, with some intricate folds. I ended up with one that afternoon. Even though the 6000 is light with great ergonomics, my detecting arm is out of shape and my bicep was getting a bit sore. I found myself missing my bungee, hip stick, and guide arm on my 7000 setup. I also missed the clip on wireless speaker. I was using the Aventree Torus headphones that hang around your neck; they fell off a few times while digging, then when I tried to secure them, the Power button would get pressed and they would turn off. Chet’s just stopped working. Weird. So need to figure out my speaker system. One other 7000 feature I also miss is the built-in gps...so handy. So day 2 we hit several other old patches. I used a bungee and was getting more in tune with the 6000...much more comfortable with it, though my left arm didn’t know what to do! Put hand in pocket? Hook thumb on harness loop? Its motor memory wanted to be helping with a guide arm😄! By the end of 8 hours we each had found a bit more gold. Nice, but nothing over .2 or .3 gram. On the 3rd day we went back to Day 1 patch, as it was close to camp. Again, the 6000 was able to sniff out some good stuff from this patch that had been hunted by 5000s, 2300s, 7000s. By now I was in sync with my new detector. I mainly hunted in Normal, setting at 3 o’clock position with threshold. Tried the Auto+ but preferred the other, I like hearing the threshold and it was more sensitive to targets. We knew the machine was awesome at finding these smaller nuggets, and weird shaped nuggets, but we hadn’t found anything of any size yet. That changed when Chet found a gorgeous 2.5-3 grammer at about 6”! Woo Hoo!👍 So Chet was the big winner on this trip; 6.2 grams in 3 days. And they will be beautiful when cleaned up...maybe add those pics to this post Chet? I ended up with 2.4 g in 2 1/2 days. Chet attributes a lot of his success on this trip to the ease of detecting with the 6000, compared to the 7000...fewer rest breaks means more time on the gold fields. Though I really loved my 7000, I think this detector will better serve me; either hunting known worked patches or walking miles looking for new, it will do the job and be easier on my neck and shoulders/arm.
    40 points
  16. Last week i found a small patch of nuggets here in the far south west of Arizona the area was around 100 foot long by around 30 foot wide up on a flat area at the base of a slope above a fairly large wash, total weight of 7.47 grams , they range in size of .10 to 2.25 grams and were found with the 7000 using the nugget finder Zsearch coil . Now i just need to get Condor to run his 6000 over the spot to see if i left anything .
    39 points
  17. Having moved to Northern Nevada, I’ve gotten use to a chilly Winter temperatures. I will say, I enjoy the Chill vs Heat any day! This year we had the wettest December ever in Reno and then January the driest on record. About mid January a Buddy dropped me a message to hit a spot he just had some luck at in the Rye Patch area. Thinking I’m a smart prospector Robin and I, scheduled new floors to be installed that week, plus Robin’s Birthday is at the end of January! Well the floors look great in the House and 4 days to celebrate Robin’s Birthday left me the last day in January to make the hunt happen. I arrived to our hunting area at a Balmy 41 degrees at 10 Am. Met up with prospecting Buddy Larry and he showed me the spot of his 7 nugget patch. He pointed to a spot 1/4 mile away that he got 3 nuggets at late last year. That’s all the info I need and started the grind to establish a patch or run of nuggets to a new patch. Didn’t take long as we both scored color. We ended the first day with some nice nuggets with Larry scoring a 2.8 dwt’er. Next morning at 19 degrees we hit it again. I scored 4 more and Larry got 2 more nuggets before we called it with no glory patch at both ends of the 1/4 mile run of nuggets. It’s a large area and we’ve found gold close by. So this hunt will continue…but there are so many other spots to find gold at! Until the next Hunt. LuckyLundy
    39 points
  18. Absolutely fantastic actually! I did a lot of filming. Will have a video posted within the next week. Cheers!
    39 points
  19. I went on a little day trip to the Mojave Desert, California. It is within a day’s round trip from where I live but I had to get up at 3 am to get there on time and to have enough time available for prospecting. I decided to just have a little exploration trip and to check out this new area that I had in mind. The general area that I wanted to explore has a long history of lode and placer mining, mostly in the late 19th century, but mining was not been done on grand scale due to the extreme harsh weather conditions and lack of water. It is not too far away from Death Valley with temperatures easily reaching 115 deg F and above in summer (43 deg C) and way below freezing at night time in winter. I happen to like this harsh and unforgiving environment and spending time there is like being in a meditative state thinking to be in a foreign world, or like being on another planet. I selected a canyon area that I spotted on google earth that had a couple of old placer mines nearby. The geology is in this general region is characterized by tertiary sandstone, shale, conglomerate, breccia, and ancient lake deposits. However, there are also significant lava rock occurrences in form of highly mineralized volcanic tuff which makes detecting extremely challenging. This is a little depiction of the rocks you find there. Many of these rocks are screamers that neither the 6000 nor the 7000 were able to handle. What made the situation even more complicated is that these “hot rocks” were not just on the surface but also buried all the way deep. So, identifying targets of interest that were worth-wile digging was nearly impossible and many times I found hot rocks 1-2 feet deep that the detector picked up. I started with the 6000 and found my first little nugget very close to the surface, around 2 inch deep. What made this one interesting was that it was stuck on a volcanic tuff rock. This is another example of how gold flakes can be stuck to these rocks and wiping the dirt off of them before throwing them away can pay off. I run the 6000 on Auto/Normal/threshold on with the detector volume set all the way down to 1 but with the headset volume set to about 6 clicks. This actually worked remarkably well and made detecting a lot easier without losing sensitivity. I can highly recommend these settings and I believe Steve and JP have commented on this before. I also picked up a lot of tiny bird shots, another example of how sensitive the 6000 is. I then switched to the 7000/NF-Zsearch which I run in HY/Normal/Sens 15/semi-auto GB/smoothing off/volume 6/threshold 27. To my surprise, the detector was fairly stable under these conditions but the hot rocks still remained a major issue (no surprise). However, even when using these fairly hot settings I picked up way less bird shots than with the 6000. This was a striking example of how much more sensitive the 6000 is on tiny shallow surface targets. I managed to pick up 3 more flakes, all of which were extremely thin and flat. The nature of these flakes is suggestive of water wearing and major pounding force as part of the volcanic activity and alluvial mass flows. The only way to pick these up was by extremely slow swing speed and strict coil control which paid off in this difficult to detect area. Had I moved faster as part of ground scanning I would have missed them for sure. Overall, I was happy with my finds (albeit very modest) as I think this area has potential despite the challenging detecting conditions. I will definitely go back there for a more thorough and longer exploration. The landscape and general area are absolutely breathtaking! Many bad things can be said about California, but the nature is amazing and extremely divers, with the gold rich Sierra Nevada to the North and the vast gold bearing Mojave and Colorado deserts to the South, all of which are just within a 3-6 hour drive, depending on where you live. Here is the trash/gold ratio for the day Well, it doesn’t look too good for the “gold team”. But when does it ever? 😛 Wishing you all a Merry Christmas and a safe, healthy, happy and prosperous new year! GC
    39 points
  20. Dang, is it September already? I didn’t even work my little Claim this season! All the easy gold has been gone for a couple years now, and since I’m looking at a Hip Replacement in the near future (old car wreck injury), it wasn’t worth the flare ups that come from hauling rocks, swinging a pick, and shoveling to get at the remaining gold. So I’ve focused on fitness and biking the hills this summer, with a couple fun detecting trips to Nv to keep me in the game….but the next trip isn’t for a couple weeks and I need a Gold Fix! So I decided that after my early morning walk, it would be time to go play with the Gold Monster😊 It was a brisk start to the day! My hummingbird feeder was starting to freeze; most have left, but I leave it out for the stragglers. While on my walk and planning where I’d go with the Monster, I couldn’t help but admire the beautiful sunrise….unfortunately due to the awful California wildfires😥. Then I saw the neighborhood Mama Moose….her Baby was with her, but I didn’t catch the young one in the pic. I sure do love my morning walks up here! Once it warmed up a bit, the Pup and I headed out in the side x side to an area I’ve hit quite a bit before with the Monster, but I was sure it could squeak out a couple more. Lila, of course, wanted to drive😄. I worked real slow, and sure enough, was able to find some little bits. And LITTLE being the key word here…check out this tiny speck. Unbelievable that a detector can pick this up! Here’s one of the larger bits found…can actually pose it on the detector lol! All the while, my little Pup was protecting me from the chipmunks scurrying amongst the Old Timer’s rock piles…what a cutie 🥰 We spent several hours enjoying the late summer sun, the gentle babbling of the nearby creek, the breeze in the pines, and the solitude and contentment only Nature can bring. And I ended up with enough bits to actually weigh…what a great day!👍😊
    38 points
  21. Hey Guys, Well its that time of year where most of the US Prospectors are searching for gold, in the Southwest at least. I managed to get out this weekend with some friends, just roaming around some old stomping grounds in hopes to turn up a few bits missed years prior. I was toggling between my GPZ 7000 with the NF 12" coil and my GPX 6000 with the 11" coil. My other two friends were using the GPZ 7000's with the stock 14x13" coils. Later in the day I can across some old piles left from prior mining and got a softer sounding signal and decided to investigate. My friends both had a few dinks now, so I was behind on the gold count. There's a lot of left behind rubbish in this area due to prior mining, hardrock and placering. I figured it was just another deep nail or something, but as I got down deeper, the target was actually on bedrock below the pile. I ended up scratching everything away from the bedrock and pinpointed the target in a crevice or depression (seen in picture below). Low and behold, it was a nice gold nugget, 4.6 Dwt's, just shy of 1/4 Troy Ounce. I was pleasantly surprised to say the least, didn't expect it. I thought this would be good time to see if my Minelab GPX 6000 would hear this target with the stock 11" coil on it. I walked back to my truck, got the GPX 6000 and hiked back to the target location. I figured this would be a crude, but interesting test as there is so much debate on depth and how now many believe the GPX 6000 is better. I fired the GPX 6000, balanced and make sure the EMI was good, then scanned over the target area with the nugget back in it's original location. I couldn't hear a peep of a signal, which honestly is what I figured. I didn't expect to find it, or hear it with the GPX 6000. I played around with a few settings and even had my buddies come over to check it out. They both scanned their stock coils (GPZ 7000 with 14x13") over it, both heard the target, but it was still faint (not a super obvious signal). This is one reason it's hard for me to put down the GPZ 7000, I have found many nuggets at depth, but deal with the heavy, bulky unit. I thought about going back and trying the 14" DD to see what it would have done, but for the most part, I never use the 14" DD, so it wouldn't have really proved anything to me, as I don't use it. It would have been interesting to see what the 17" coil would have done, but I didn't have it with me. I would think the 17" would have heard it. I'm swinging the GPZ 7000 with the NF 12" Round coil 90% of the time, the GPX 6000 about 10% of the time. There are some bedrock gullies I have revisited in years, so I'm looking forward to spending more time there with the 6000 and 11" Mono coil. I think I also might be able to pack the GPX 6000 into a few canyons as I wasn't easily able to do that with the GPZ 7000. Here are a few pictures below. I didn't have a tape measure, but Doc's pick is 22" handle length. I'm thinking between 18-20 inches was the true detection depth, but faint signal for sure.
    37 points
  22. Just sharing an appealing little alluvial worn twinned crystalline nuggie i detected today. (3.6 grams NSW Australia. 7000 with the NF coil)
    37 points
  23. I shirked my fatherly responsibilities today with the help of my wife and I managed a day hunt in Southern California. It is a 3 hour one way drive but today I was pleasantly rewarded. I was using my 7000 with 15/10 Xcoil. The larger nugget was down about 7 inches or so. One of the smaller nuggets was very near the surface under a little bush.
    36 points
  24. First off, I have been off the forums for a while. It's not that I have not been out prospecting, but to be honest, things have just been a little down the last couple years... and well, maybe I got a little in the habit of not talking to people. I'm sure everyone knows the feeling. Anyways, I did a trip with a couple buddies to an area we have been expanding upon for years. (in the desert of Arizona) We do ok here and there. Usually, I have quite the luck, but this time my buddy was rocking it. He managed to stumble upon a patch and true to his word, after he collected a few, he called out to me so that I could come home with a little gold as well. It sounds weird, but when we travel off to a place, we try to make sure everyone goes home with gold. This usually means, get 2 or 3 pcs, you call your buddies over. So I got there and went to work. After a couple hidden cans, I found my first square specimen (sort of strange piece) and then we took turns until I had found my second piece. Well at this point, we were content. My buddy that found the patch kept looking and so I moved on, thankful that I would not go home with the skunk. At this point it was time to get away from the patch and find new areas. I tried washes nearby and then ended up circling to the other side of the hill with the patch. I see a little flat area and head right up to it. It only seemed like seconds when I got a booming signal. Once in the scoop, it wasn't long before I felt the weight fall into my hand. It ended up being a nice chunky 11 grammer. This day just got better. Another smaller patch. Of course my buddies always rag on me for finding the chunkers and skipping over the smaller nuggets. I guess I can live with that. Honestly, it was just a good time hanging out. Some before and after pics are shown below. Best of luck to everyone in the New Year!!
    35 points
  25. It's been almost a year since I had a chance to get out and detect. Last year a forum member (incidentally one of the most gold getting-est people I've ever met and also a great detector operator) gave me a rare opportunity to check out some historically productive Arizona land. This trip I've been exploring more thoroughly and enjoying some quiet and solitude in a place that gets few visitors these days, and finding some gold while I'm at it. It's a bit of a trip in, a side by side is the only way I can get my dog there as it's too far for him to walk. This thing is a real steel pack mule, and I'm amazed at how smooth of a ride these Fox shocks give over rough terrain and rocks. Love this thing and it fits in the back of my truck like an ATV. I got the idea from reading one of Condor's posts about his RZR and thought - hmm that is the way to go for the desert. I'm not usually one for try to find patterns in rocks, old Spanish carvings, etc but this one caught my eye enough to make me think.."ehhhhh, maybe?". Sometimes you just really gotta write "4" in stone I guess. Or maybe it's natural, who knows. Speaking of patterns, sometimes when you set out with an idea to start looking for ancient exhumed paleo river channels on mountain tops, you start seeing them everywhere. And like Spanish carvings, sometimes you gotta wonder it's really what you are seeing or not. In this case, I think it is though and this is a water worn remnant boulder from an old stream or river channel. Testing soils and gravels with my XRF shows a number of potential "fingerprint" elements in common, and I believe that among a few other elements, the original source rock of the gravels was anomalous in cobalt. I've also noted anomalous cobalt readings in many quartz veins in the area and as distant as 10 miles away, so I believe it may be likely the gravels (and probably gold) also came from ancestral mountains in the immediate area and of similar age to the existing rocks, and not distant or now eroded away sources of different composition than what still exists here currently. The nuggets also have all the hallmarks of once being in such a paleo channel in my opinion. Striations showing movement, well rounded surfaces. Whatever the mechanism, they have clearly moved a lot. This one was an inverted low-high signal on the 6000 and came in at 3.8 grams. This gold is quite dense and sluggy. My XRF shows almost all Au and Fe so significant Au enrichment at surface has occured and silver is entirely depleted, also common with nuggets which find their ways into watercourses and travel some distances. In this case I think that distance is probably less than 5 miles though. The ground here is what some people would consider hot for the US. Or at least "medium" on the Taco Bell sauce packet scale. It's definitely very impregnated with iron oxides. However, I seem to have no troubles keeping the 6000 running hot and in Normal here with the 11" mono. However, I've just been running in the auto settings and letting GeoSense do it's thing, so I need to try the manual modes a bit more. I am definitely noticing that either the hotter soil, or GeoSense, or both are causing a bit of a depth reduction for what I'd expect of targets of similar size in milder soil. I got another low-high here, this one ended up being 2.something grams. These two are the only ones I took pictures of, I hadn't planned on posting anything at first so I wasn't really concentrating on documentation, but instead paying attention to exploring and observing the area for patterns and oddities. This is - I think - a javelina lower jawbone. You can see the gnarly canines and whatever that tooth up front is called. They've always steered clear of me in the past, but I sometimes wonder if I might piss one off by accident and get a tooth to the calf. I don't think I've ever heard of it happening though. Anyways, 24 nuggets for the 7 days ranging from 0.046 grams to 3.8 grams. Another went missing when I pulled them out of the ultrasonic cleaner and it stuck to my finger via surface tension and fell who knows where, it was the smallest and I think it was almost sub 0.04 grams. Aside from the EMI issues, I'm loving the 6000. It's my go-to machine and the one I am going to take everywhere with me when I don't need outright depth. For depth, I still keep my 7000 with the larger X Coils and honestly nothing can compete with that setup still when looking for deep lunkers or working small areas/patches. But I love the 6000 so far, the weight and deployment speed, Geosense, the no-threshold mode built in, it's just close to the perfect exploration/prospecting machine in my eyes. When I'm exploring I don't want to think about maximizing this or that setting, I want to pay attention to environment and make enough finds to know where I need to bring the big gun (7000) in later. I hope Coiltek, NF, or X Coils makes a little shooter coil. Something like 6x9 sounds about right. Assuming that tiny coil wouldn't make the 6000 too overly hypersensitive to soils. Though I can work around it, the EMI thing really is a let down though. It's even worse here in Arizona then when I used it in Nevada last year. Great exploration machine! Just one glaring flaw though, kinda like getting a badass Vette brand new from the factory with a rod knock. It's like, yeah ok I guess I can kinda ignore it but it'd be so much better working properly. And, it really seems like something that the manufacturer should address.
    35 points
  26. Yeah, I know, posting off topic! One of the perks I guess that come with running the place. I can break the rules and not get shown the door. It’s early morning, I have my coffee, and am in a contemplative mood. Tomorrow a lot of us will be celebrating the U.S. holiday of Thanksgiving, many with family and friends, and some of us alone. Like many things I feel holidays of all sorts have been watered down by our busy lives, and the commercialization of everything. When I was young holidays were more real, all businesses except essentials closed, and the country did for a moment pause, and recognize the day. I am gratified to see Target stores announce that, going forward, they will be closed on Thanksgiving. I hope it starts a trend with other businesses. Giving thanks has special meaning for me. I’ve lead a blessed life, with good fortune heaped upon me. Yet like everyone I have suffered my share of pain, death, and despair. None of us live this life unscarred. A decade ago I was well on my way to killing myself with alcohol. Rehab, counseling, and very hard work on my part brought me back from the brink. I can say more than most that I was reborn, my life started anew, when I finally found the strength to stop drinking. People who are on the path I was on often reach a state of despair, of no hope for the future. Everything is bleak, and there seems finally to be no reason to live anymore. One of the greatest tools I was given in rehab was my practice of gratitude. Every day, we were asked to write down just one thing in our life we were thankful for. At the time that was hard, and more an exercise of going through the motions to keep the counselors happy. Now, practicing gratitude daily has become a core part of my spiritual practice. I tend to my body and soul like the gifts they are, and gratitude is the water I use to nourish them. I try every day to take a moment to give thanks for simply drawing breath another day, for seeing the sun rise, for being with my wife and my pups another day. There are people yesterday who made plans for today, and who are now gone, those plans snatched away, their lives at an end. We take so much for granted, we plan for tomorrow and next year, yet the truth is any one of us could leave this earth today. Truly understanding this, knowing how fragile life really is, is a core part of being grateful. Having life itself is not enough though, as many of us struggle to simply survive each day. A measure of contentment to go with life goes lacking for too many. I am supremely grateful, and give thanks, for all the blessings conferred upon me in my life. Family, good friends, good cheer, things that engage my mind, that bring me peace and happiness. I hope you all, no matter who you are, or whether you live in a country where tomorrow is just another day, have a measure of gratitude for things in your lives. Things that make you happy, fulfilled, content, at peace. Happy Thanksgiving! Steve Herschbach https://www.theatlantic.com/family/archive/2021/11/gratitude-thanksgiving/620799/
    35 points
  27. In between lockdowns, work, kids footy and endless cancellations of a trip to W.A because of bl@@dy COVID have managed to get out for a few hours here and there with the GPX6. Just short trips to go over old ground where I have found gold before. Unfortunately, 'real prospecting' hasn't had any air time recently. Difficult mode is my go-to around here due to mineralised rocks that light up in Normal (do the same on the GPZ in Normal too) and also the fact that we are saturated at the moment and the red, clay soil has 'come alive'. The GPX6 is just loving the specimen type gold and is reaching depths that the Gold Monster, Equinox and SDC cannot match. Also tested about half a dozen of these signals against a mates GPZ and it couldn't hear them whilst still in the ground (and didn't check once out). As they came out... After a little smashing... Another few hours result...the big piece in this photo ended up having no gold, I think it may be galena?? And a different small spot with heaps of trash where my mate had found a 2.5 gram piece and he felt he had cleaned out an area maybe 6 metres X 6 metres. Found about another 8 targets (the rest trash) including the bigger piece which was about 1 foot or maybe a little more. Sounded like a very soft target at the top, much like a small piece of lead shot. About 5.5 grams but has gone into some acid so might be just under 5 once cleaned. Old mate had done the spot in High Yield/Normal with his GPZ but (I hope he doesn't read this) he is not the most thorough detector operator. I went over the spot again with his GPZ in General/Difficult hoping to get a decent piece that may be hiding a little deeper but got no further targets. The other little pieces were from nearby old diggings. Still loving the GPX6! 😀
    35 points
  28. Memorial Weekend Contest, win a Minelab GPX-6000 in your dreams. Ok, Detector Prospector fans. Most of us have been patiently waiting, some – not so patient. A few of us have even sold/traded our old detector to be ready for the release of the biggest dream of 2021. Here’s your chance to win that dream. BUT WAIT…. There’s more. This is not a dream for just you. That’s right, Gerry has stepped up the prize to the ultimate, most rewarding gift of all. Folks, I’m allowing you and your favorite detecting buddy (that’s what I said, - TWO of you!!!) to experience this dream TOGETHER. Here’s why I have went all out on this very special occasion, and by god it is special. In my 20+ yrs of selling Minelab detectors….I have never lost so much sleep, never tossed/turned/sweated and dreamed to the point where I almost pissed me-self. Heck even my Shepperd kicked me out of my own bed.. he did so. Folks, these dreams are real, their genuine and it hurts. Heck, I was just in the VA clinic last week and they scanned my brain for cause. You know it’s bad, when they tell you to come back next week for more treatment. I overheard one of the assistants and I could swear, they mentioned “Gold Fever”. Oh shit, it can’t be, I kept telling myself. Those flashbacks about took me life times prior. After all, the release of the SD-2100 in the early 90’s, then the big one of the GP-Extreme late 2000, or the popular series GPX in 2006 . Those were pretty bad on me, but that last one, the trickle and tease of the GPZ-7000 almost did me in and this go around, I’m not sure 50/50 I was told? Wife thinks I should double my life insurance, but I told her “it’s an existing condition”. Active posting DP members and just reading gawkers – Here’s the dang truth of it all. We survived. That’s right we did. Each of us had our own issues and some of us are still wearing those Gold Fever Dreamin scars, but we are breathing, walking, talking. And most importantly, we are dreaming. Heck those many scars I carry, at this point, it’s almost a Gold Detectorists Honor to show them off. But some of us do and we do it with PRIDE. Here is where I’d like everyone’s help. The numerous calls, texts, emails to me, my Field Staff, even my dedicated Minelab detector dealer friends, has to stop, if it’s about the GPX-6000. We know, we’ve heard and we’ve read. Bottom line is we want them just as bad as you folks. Heck, I even had to take the customers who were scheduled for training on the April Rye Patch, NV session and move them to the June class. Guess what, it’s almost June and so I’ll probably be moving them to the Fall class (which I just added another class to try and help get customers up to speed). Yes it’s a mess and yes the Covid Gold Fever is real, but us dealers can’t do anything until we get detectors. OK, Enough of the fun and laughs….but you can add some.. he he. In the meantime. I’d like to see you folks get out and celebrate this fine extended Memorial weekend and hopefully use your detectors. I do want to reward those who have read this far down. I (Gerry’s Detectors of Boise, Idaho) am really running a contest for all of you in the United States (sorry to my friends from other countries). I’m asking of US participants to post each day (starting today and posting to this thread), a picture you took this holiday weekend of Memorial Weekend theme with detector in the picture, examples are you family picnic and a detector in the picture, a Veteran memorial with detector, your front yard with American flag and detector in the picture, or you out detecting and camping this fine weekend…and with detector, you get the idea by now. Each day you can post 1 pic and your name will get put in a bucket for each day’s picture. BONUS - picture of “your gold find” with a metal detector. Now, before some of you get crazy with the term “gold find”, I’m talking Au gold, not a piece of gold foil, not a gold colored doodad, but real gold..a coin, a piece of gold jewelry and most certainly a gold nugget, picker or specimen that was found with your metal detector this Memorial Weekend starting today and ending Tuesday, June 1st at 5 PM MST zone. Reason I am going until Tuesday, is many of us will be in the hills and not returning until Tuesday. The BONUS gold picture gets your name in the bucket 2 times per day, max of 10, for those who are fortunate enough to find and post a gold find pic each day. Please don’t beat me as I am trying to have fun for most everyone. Rundown of the rules. 1 picture a day can be posted per DP member. So in reality, you could post a pic of this weekends events each day and end up with 5 entries, but you can only post 1 pic a day. Sometime next week I’ll count the pics and enter your name per amount of posted pics and of Memorial = 1 or Gold = 2, per day (remember 1 post a day no more than total of 5) with the last one by Tuesday, June 1st 5PM MST. I will take a tally and draw (no there will not be some big video show) a name. The winner will get a new Minelab Gold Monster 1000 metal detector courtesy of Gerry’s Detectors. No it’s not a GPX-6000, but it’s a real gold detector. Detector Prospector is the #1 metal detector forum in my opinion and I enjoy reading, learning, sharing pics, seeing gold finds. Go out, get some, spend time with family/friends or alone the way you may and be safe this Memorial Weekend. Don’t forget to think of the reason for this special weekend and the real meaning behind it. As a family of US military myself, I thank you all who have sacrificed for our freedoms and dreams AND SO IS THIS CONTEST – for a Gold Monster 1000 and the chance to dream with your detecting buddy about the GPX-6000. Again, a Memorial Themed pic with detector is 1 name in the bucket that day and a pic of your gold find is a BONUS which puts your name in the bucket 2X per that day. Thanks folks for helping calm the storm of GPX-6000 Gold Fever, as I know it’s real. But the reality is we all need to relax a little and enjoy this weekend...hopefully with detector in hand and surrounded by family/friends, laughter and making memories. PS, I'll probably shut the computer down later today, so chat with you all next week.
    35 points
  29. While not quite as exciting as Reg and James and their colours I did manage to pop a few up myself yesterday. JW and I went back to the same place I found my KFC nuggets the other day, I once again stayed right at the entrance due to my broken foot, I really can't walk very far before the pain is too much and I need to save some life in my foot for the days hunting, If I walked too far I'd have nothing left in me for swinging the detector. JW fortunately has healed up quickly from his leg muscle injury and was able to walk off into the distance, he ended up going a fair way away to an area I've not been to since I was using my GPX 4500. He did well too, ended up with 8 nuggets. Seeing I was going over ground we mostly went over the previous days I didn't have much hope for myself, but I wasn't going to let that get in my way. I was more determined than ever to at least find one nugget we missed. It's a very small area where I was hanging around, I first found gold in this exact spot with my GPX 4500 a few years ago, I found a 1.2 gram nugget down by the creek, and a couple of little ones near it, I then asked JW to go over it with his GPZ and stock coil and clean up anything my 4500 missed and I vaguely remember him finding another 6 or so tiny little nuggets I'd missed. It really is a small area, there is a dirt road and about 10 to 15 meters (30 to 50 feet) wide on one side of the road is where the gold has been found, it goes for a stretch of about 50 meters I would guess (165 feet) along the side of a bit of a drop off into a creek. It's on a downward slope and drops into a little gully and down the bottom of this is where I previously found the 1.2 gram nugget. This is the area I confined myself to that we both confined ourselves to a couple of days ago. Over the other side of the road is another area with quite long grass and deeper ground. I had an explore over there on the road side for a few hours and found nothing but junk. The other day I stayed up near the top of this area where I found 6 nuggets including my KFC pieces 🙂 This time my focus was more down towards the bottom, JW had a bit of a shot down there the other day but I didn't make it down there as we keep our distance apart to stop the detectors messing with each other, both the GPZ 7000 and GPX 6000 JW is using work remarkably well next to each other though. He was going to use his GPZ this time as it's just better for in the long grass, the shaft on the 6000 twists, the coil ears don't appear strong enough for pushing the detector through long grass so he's a bit worried about breaking them doing what we do with the GPZ. We use our detectors as a way to push down and flatten the grass, and with the GPX this isn't really possible so you have to do it by foot stomping and then detect over it which takes more time. His little flap cover on the back of the detector is always hanging open too, that thing just never holds shut, might have to tape it down or something. The GPZ is much more robust and you just bulldoze the grass down. Anyway, he just ended up using the GPX again as it was ready when I arrived at his house, it was a bit of a last minute idea to go on our gold hunt yesterday. This is the long grass I'm talking about, the 8" is a breeze in this stuff, it just squishes it down and the nice tough GPZ shaft has no problems doing it, being dry the grass is quite firm too, not nice soft green grass. JW doesn't have this little 8" coil though so he'd be using a 15" Concentric coil which wouldn't be quite as good in the long grass although he'd still be able to bulldoze it over with the stronger shaft, I've used the 12" Concentric fine doing that, but still not as easy as the 8". The little dig hole to the bottom left was just a pellet in this photo. My first nugget of the day was right down the bottom where the road drops down into the gully, right near where I found the 1.2 gram piece a few years ago with the 4500 and where JW had checked with his GPZ and stock coil at the time cleaning up the bits I'd missed. Down by the water in the shade of the willows the grass stays green, unusual for in this area as its so arid and brown. Sorry about the spit on the scoop, I had to clean the gold to see it was even gold 🙂 It was quite deep down, its hard to tell in the photos but you can sort of see the soil pile in this one above. The 8" is like a laser, you can dig pick width holes to get your target out as it's so small and accurate. And the nugget, I thought it was going to be heavier than it was, it was my biggest of the day. I was happy now, I thought at that point it was extremely unlikely I'd find another one, we'd just done this ground too much for there to be any more nuggets we'd missed. JW rang me from his location way out of my walking range to check up how I was doing, at this point he'd found 3 nuggets and I'd just found this one, I guess he was about a kilometer away along the dirt road at the time. A little further along down the bottom I had another target, weird, perhaps a pellet that was rejected or something so I dug it up. A little ball 🙂 Although a lot smaller it weighs more than the bigger flat one. And it wasn't 10 minutes and I'd found a 3rd, all in a similar area down near the bottom of this little dip in the road. This one was probably hidden due to the long grass, because I was able to squish the grass down so easily I was able to get close to the ground. In fact it's probably similar for all of them, with the clumps of grass the GPZ just has more push strength to crush it down to get closer to the soil. A little KFC mini drumstick 🙂 There isn't much meat on the KFC mini drum. I gave up in this area now, I've absolutely slammed it and so has JW, I was honestly surprised to get anything. I went over the other side of the road in the small area between the road and the fence, it was just full of trash, although I did find a silver ear ring, probably from a hiker. The really bad bit about detecting along this road was hikers, they kept walking past me, I felt like a monkey at a zoo with them all stopping to watch me and talking to me with the same standard lines, "have you found anything" or "are you looking for gold". This place is normally pretty empty, you're lucky to see one other person in a day, this day I am sure there was 20 or 30 hikers go past! so weird! JW encountered them way further along where he was too. He probably wasn't right at the road though so wouldn't have had it as bad as I did. The ear ring I found, I also found a wedding ring from a mouse. Poor little guy probably got a big lecture from Mrs Mouse for losing his wedding ring. and my junk, I zoomed in so you can get a real good look at it! I was rejecting surface pellets, if it moves on the first scrape or two it stays there, these are the ones I had to dig, using the same dig and recovery process of a nugget, very time consuming. I don't understand how the pellets get down deep into the ground, maybe they've been there a long time, some get down in cracks in the bedrock and everything and really get you excited. A majority of this junk came from the opposite side of the road to the gold along where the fence is. JW has found gold on that side in the past, I wasn't able to find any there this time. I had a fun day, even though I confined myself to such a small area I was happy to get some gold. I'll post a photo of JW's nuggets weight when he sends one though to me. And for those wondering, yes we got KFC on the way home 🙂
    34 points
  30. Had a great time metal detecting for gold nuggets with Steve Herschbach and Steve Freeman (Condor) over the weekend of April 8-10th. We camped out for 2 nights and for the most part the weather was great. Sunday morning was in the teens. But we packed up and got out early due to some mechanical issues with Steve (Condor)'s truck. I can't thank them enough for the great time and conversations. They are both a wealth of knowledge and experience. I had a truck load of metal detectors packed with me which included the the GPX 5000, Equinox, Deus 1, Deus 2 and Legend. But got a surprise when Steve Herschbach insisted I use his GPX 6000 to ensure I would find gold. So he used the 7000 and Steve Freeman and I used 6000's most of the time. We all found gold and that made the trip even more enjoyable. But honestly I could have found nothing and been perfectly content just getting out with them. Over the course of the 2 days I found 13 nuggets ranging from 1 gram down to pinhead sized nuggets, total of 3.2 grams. Some of you are going to laugh, but that's the most gold I've ever found in a weekend. I did some gold hunting 15 years ago in Lost Basin AZ when we had property down there and I could walk across the street and pick up a nugget here and there. And more recently using the Deus 1 with the HF coils to snag a small nugget here and there in Gold and Lost Basin. So most of my experience has been with AZ. I would assume the success I saw this weekend can be attributed the detector used, location and expert advice. So I thank you again Steve and Steve. Below are some pictures of the gold I found and a video (Day 1) if your interested in watching, I'll post day 2 video later. Hopefully Steve and Steve will chime in with some thoughts and pictures of their nuggets.
    34 points
  31. The weather the last couple weeks where I live in Colorado has decided to remain cold and snowing leaving very little opportunities to go detecting even though spring is just around corner. I usually take this idle time to catch up on cataloging and photographing gold specimens that I’ve cleaned. Here are some recent examples of mother nature great works:
    34 points
  32. One of the places I have permission to hunt will soon be developed and under hundreds of new homes. It's a darn shame because the property sits in a beautiful valley where there once was an old town site dating back to the late 1800's. There are also several old home sites that are nothing more then just dots on the old as maps there are no structures left...all you might find is some bits of pottery and the iron grunt of your detector telling you are in the right spot. I've detected these areas off and on for several years as it's close and I can easily put in a hour or two after work. Recently I was told that I had till Jan 1st and then the land movers will be coming in so I've been going over the place hitting one spot then another...I've made some good silver coin finds over the years but I've had to work for every one of them as the place is no secret and it's been hit hard for many years before I was into this hobby. My main goal was to try and find a $1 gold coin...I just know there has to be one out there around the old town site. The place is littered with head stamps and 22 casings and other low to mid conductors. Yesterday I had had enough of digging junk for mostly nothing at the old town site and decided to hit one of the old home sites...I have detected this area before and found a really nice engraved silver buckle...that time I was with my friend Merton and we had went over the area pretty good but we were mostly cherry picking high conductors. Yesterday I was in a dig it all kind of mood. I was getting lots of brass rivets and some other mid/high conductors and fully expected the next target to be more of the same when out of the hole pops a token..cool the day is saved I think to myself...then just a foot away same signal same reading on the detector and out pops another of the same style token...so now it's game on. For the next hour I stayed in a circle no more than 15 feet in diameter and plucked token after token out of the ground. And for desert I got a very old gold ring with two hearts on it and one gold cuff link...plus a smashed barber dime... today i went back and got another token and found the mate to the gold cuff link. All the finds were with the CTX 3030 all of them were at least 6 inches deep or deeper. Some were faint signals...I went back over it again today with the Nox but no dice. The strange shaped tokens are from a place called "The Palace Beer and Billiards Market St San Francisco" the round ones vary...one says cigar on it the others are hard to read. I figured this was worth posting so I broke out my ole trusty rock from Rye patch and did a photo op. The gold ring is hard to see upper left it's in good shape but has lots of staining from sitting in cow piss for over a hundred years..got it soaking in CLR right now. One of the pictures explains everything...Happy Hunting and Happy Thanks giving. strick
    34 points
  33. I don't care what you own, like or swing. I know who the King of detectors is at Rye Patch. Over 60 nuggets on my last trip there and part of the time was even after record 100 yr rains saturated the soils. The Minelab GPX-6000 owns Rye Patch for Success and no other detector made (including the GPZ-7000) can get these results. I just love the characteristics of NV gold.
    34 points
  34. Early wet Weather in Northern Nevada, sure messed up a few of my hunts! But, this last Hunt was called Rain or Shine! Be there or miss out with the original hunting party. We had half the amount of coils on the ground during this hunt and managed to find a few sweet spots of dinks to add to our pokes. Rain on us with snow in the ground 200’ above us all 4-Days! 6000, Retune Button got a workout. I kept the 11” Mono on. Tried the DD for a few hours with no luck, don’t know if the ground and line I took was bad, but the guys behind me where finding nuggets…so back to the 11”. My truck is out in the drive way in the wet Weather still loaded up with me gear! Getting wet again to unload it, I can’t wait 🤨 Until the next Hunt! LuckyLundy
    34 points
  35. Hunted a fresh drop beach Tuesday, now that they are open all day. Tides were low and water was calm. I was able to get into a area where no one had been and got a 14k wedding band. The other two (10k white golds) were closer to shore, no doubt recent drops... (One scoop) When I dug the first, I said gold but never seen a mark and figured it was junk.. until I got to my car and seen both stamped 10k.. The place was hammered good but there were areas still un-hunted after being open a week.
    34 points
  36. Nobody gets it all. That's true enough for sure. Sometimes it's the easiest ones that get left behind. The pile to the left looked like it had been kicked and raked down, no telling how many times. The nugget probably had been moved around some but I still found it hard to understand why it was overlooked since it was only 6" deep. Out of sight to the right of the photo was a shallow, narrow stream full of reeds etc. with sparse water flow. The remains of a couple of old wooden Long Tom's, probably from the 1930s lay mostly submerged in the mud. A few rusty bolts and washers came out of the back pile but no gold.
    33 points
  37. Yes I was able to check off 2 more (now 8 states in the US plus 2 other countries) from my list of, I found gold nuggets with a metal detector there. Some of you realize I was in South Dakota this summer and was able to work a so called cleaned out patch with the new GPX-6000. I already posted the results to DP awhile back. Most importantly on these road trips we had fun and made laughing/lasting memories with customers/friends. These trips are one of my most enjoyable parts of my job. It’s such a treat to meet up with other DP forum members/hunters and share the new technologies in the field on their ground and patches. We don’t know what the outcome will be, if the results are in favor of a new detector or did the old one do such a fine job, it’s all live and unscripted. The end results are what we learned and experienced while in the field using the detectors on their sites. Wyoming, It just so happened that on my way from SD back to Idaho, I’m heading West and traveling through the cowboy state. For a few years now I have been trying to get myself in WY to meet up with previous customers, share some in the field detector knowledge, again make some memories and hopefully find a WY nugget. Well a couple phone calls/emails with their help/guidance I was able to swing in and make it happen. Again, just another reason and part of why I like the followers on Detector Prospector, we all enjoy seeing success, learning detectors (including me) and sharing field knowledge. Wyoming is such a different kind of detecting terrain than what I encounter in South Dakota. It actually reminded me of some of Northern NV with the openness and lack of trees. You can see for miles and as you glance across the plains, the 1st thing a prospector realizes is exposed bedrock in many areas, meaning gold could be near the surface (which is exactly what a detectorists wants). Also, the lack of bushes made it pretty easy for swinging the detector and hopefully if I go back, the larger 17” coil will be in its element allowing for more ground coverage. Working my way across the old patch, I could see scratches and scuffs from previous detecting efforts. When coming across such indicators of nugget recovery, I try to concentrate around them realizing the new technology and it’s capabilities vs the 7000 should hopefully produce a few missed nuggets. As had hoped I started getting target hits. They were not the gold I was after but many small lead pellets. At least I know their machines missed these piece of non-ferrous metals, so now it just becomes a numbers game and sooner or later, one of them will be gold. Yes I could use the scratch the surface and if it moves method (just walk – usually trash), but I was informed some of the previous gold was recovered near the surface. Plus when you are digging lead shot at 2”, you need to check them all. We compared the 1st half dozen signals and it was evident the capabilities of the 6000 was better than the 7000. Interestingly a couple of the targets were not even heard by the 7000. On my GPX most signals were much cleaner and louder coming from it, so we were excited to see the 1st target become gold. It didn’t take long and then it happened. I nice rough narrow nugget only a few inches down. Now we all know once that 1st piece of yellow metal is unearthed, our attention and desire becomes so focused, we are on our A game. That’s exactly what happened, the remaining few hours of detecting and the elusive WY gold started popping more regularly. Notice the difference in the kind of gold from the 2 hunts. SD gold is smoother and dense while the WY gold is rough and porous. Either way the results were the same for the GPX-6000, it was able to find the smaller stuff the big GPZ-7000 missed. I’m not saying the GPZ-7000 is not a good tool, heck it’s a great detector. But as I get older and more wise, I see the comforts of the new design and that’s what this old geezer needs today for most of my hunts. Nothing special but I wanted to share with you all. My Settings for the 2nd half of the trip in WY were SENS at 10, Threshold On and Normal Ground. Yes my detector runs noisy but I have confidence in my ears hearing the differences of a target vs ground noise. Be sure to do a Frequency Adjust way more often than most of us did with the older Minelab PI detectors. I was doing it every 15 minutes in the morning and every 10 minutes after noon.
    33 points
  38. Approximately 12 to 14 hours swing time with the 6000 due to the heat.
    33 points
  39. I was out again in the same environment and same general area last weekend. The weather was beautiful - and it can be hot this time of year in the lower elevation country, but it was not hot last weekend. There was scattered gold here and there in and around the old workings of the miners. I dug a number of loud, non-ferrous targets, but they were all lead - got over 2 ounces of lead. I got 6.7 grams of gold in 17 pieces. All were dug with the GM 1000 and wireless headphones from Fossickers. The wireless headphones are nice, I should use them more often.
    32 points
  40. Went out a few weeks ago to prospect in California at the same location I was at a few weeks back. Did pretty well with the GM 1000 - its a pretty trashy area and if you dont want to dig 200 pieces of rusty iron junk, you will be using some discrimination. I did try the SDC and the 7000 in a few areas, but eventually the trash got to me and I was back on the GM1000. I know that a lot of guy preach dig it all, but there are places which have gold but the amount of trash will make your head spin. What do you guys think? This is the gold I dug last time - 5 grams. I'll be returning soon because success breeds more success.
    32 points
  41. It’s been a year of not doing what I want to do when I wanted to do it due to delays on work and home projects, i.e. little time for prospecting. So when I had an unexpected free day yesterday that coincided with a weather window I jumped at the chance to get in one more day in before things freeze up solid for the year. I went back to a spot in a canyon where I had detected a picker a month ago, and started swinging. I got a loud signal right away and started chopping into the frozen ground with a rock hammer. Thinking it was another chunk of rusted iron I wasn’t working too enthusiastically, but to my shock there appeared flat 1 gram nugget buried in the tiniest crack in the bedrock. I’ve never found anything bigger than .25 of a gram in this area so I let out a choice expletive did a happy dance. Not far from where I found the nugget, I got another good sounding signal in the slate bedrock on top of quartz seam and started hacking away. I was having a hard time pinpointing where the signal was and kept digging deeper and wider into the bedrock, fortunately it was decomposing, but it being frozen made it harder. After spending a half an hour working on this new slate quarry of mine I was surprised when our popped another 1 gram nugget. Omg, best day ever. It was getting below freezing so I was considering packing up but checked the hole before moving on and was surprised with another clear signal. I expanded the hole and after another 15-20 minutes of chipping away bedrock I had finally moved it. I couldn’t pinpoint it by waving handfuls of broken up rock over the coil so I kept dumping the rock into the pan till I got the signal in the pan. Of course I’d forgotten my rubber gloves so I panned it out in the icy water with my bare hands. When I panned back to hr concentrates there was another 1 gram nugget. What?! I was starting to lose daylight so I had to pack it up as hiking out of the canyon on ice and snow in the dark isn’t high on my fun list. Now I have to wait 7-8 months to see else is there!
    32 points
  42. Had a repeat of yesterdays BEAUTIFUL day today! Took this snap of a gorgeous Montana morn on the way to harvest more yellow tiddlers!!!! Love this time of year.....
    32 points
  43. We've been in a bit of a Covid lock-down recently and during that time my Garrett 24k arrived so I wasn't able to use it in the gold fields straight away, it was quite painful to look at it knowing I can't go and use it, fortunately we came out of our lock-down and as took off for a prospect with the 24k as soon as I could. I ordered a White's 6" concentric coil for it to tie me over until Garrett and with any luck Nel come out with other coils for it, I hope they continue with the 6" Concentric as I'll buy a Garrett 6" Concentric as soon as they release it. It's a remarkably sensitive coil, I expected it to be less sensitive than it is as it's quite big however it surprised me and matches or exceeds smaller coils on other high frequency gold detectors. I've always been happy with Garrett coil quality so upgrading the Whites to a Garrett would be worthwhile I think. In saying that, neither the 10x6" Garrett coil or the Whites 6" coil were at all bump sensitive, not one bump noise the entire day. I'm so used to coil bump sensitivity from the Equinox and Gold Monster it was a rather pleasurable experience being able to scrub the coil on the ground like mad and bump it around not setting off the detector, giving me a distinct advantage over using bump sensitive coils. I started the day using the 10x6" Coil as I wanted to see how it goes and I was going back to a spot I'd found a fair few grams of gold in the past, about 30 or more nuggets using the scrape and detect method taking off layers of soil at a time and detecting it. The initial nugget which was just under half a gram and a fair few more were found using my GPZ including a 4.2 gram nugget and then I brought in the Equinox with 6" coil to clean up as a majority of the nuggets were very small and the VLF's tend to do better cleaning up these very small nuggets. I'd even gone over this little scrape and detect area with the Gold Bug 2 however it was a bit of a nightmare as the area is absolutely full of hot rocks and the Gold Bug 2 in heavy hot rocks isn't a good detector in my opinion, it's too busy making it's response noise to the hot rocks to worry about the bits of gold next to the hot rocks so you miss nuggets if they're near hot rocks. The problem is this spot is loaded with hot rocks all through the soil of various shapes and sizes mostly a green type of schist that is all crumbly and broken up and detectors love to sound off on it. It's likely there from the old timers, it's basically some old workings where the old timers left their rock pile in a little gully, and right on the lower downhill side of the rock pile was my little scrape and detect patch. Even the GPZ struggled with all of the hot rocks so I was quite pleased how the 24k was coping with them, sure it was sounding off on some of them too but it wasn't too troublesome and seemed to ignore the little broken up bits and very usable. I ran the 24k with the sensitivity maxed out, Sat on the middle setting and audio on Boost 2. The ground balance was quick and easy then I switched into the Locked balance mode. If the broken up schist bits of hot rock were too severe I left it in tracking which helped to knock them out. I gave the 6" Concentric coil a quick try and it struggled more with the hot rocks and i didn't want to lower my sensitivity down so I reverted back to the DD which appeared to handle them better and is still remarkably sensitive. So I just started scraping back layers and detecting taking about 2 inches off at a time knowing the gold here is likely going to be very small and it will be stuff I've missed in the past as I've scraped this spot out before and back filled it so I was essentially checking the same soil all over again for anything I missed. I had high hopes I had missed some as all it would take is a small hot rock to be sitting on top of the bit of gold the previous time and I'd likely miss it or just the bit of gold on it's side being a very thin one or any number of reasons, even just at a depth too deep for the size of gold with the detector I was using. It wasn't long and I had my first piece. Quite a decent size one too, I was baffled at the time why I'd missed this one in the past. The 24k had now found it's first gold, highly likely the first piece of gold found in New Zealand with the Garrett 24k, a badge I'll wear proudly. 🙂 Next up was a reasonably faint but very repeatable signal with no target ID showing, I delicately used my scoop to scrape soil away knowing this was likely a very small bit of gold and it sure was... my smallest bit of the day too and surprised I managed to find it with the 10x6" coil, I don't recall ever finding a bit this small using the 10x5" type size on other detectors. Can you spot it? 🙂 There it is! 0.007 of a gram, not bad for the 10x6" coil, especially in this hot rock infested ground. I always check targets in case they're odd little bits of metal with my pick magnet, and you'll see it was quick to build up black sand, this soil has plenty of it in it. I kept scraping down layers and found another. Quite small too... but a bit more meat on it than the previous one 🙂 I'd had enough of the scrape and detect spot by now and wanted to go explore a bit to see how the 24k performed for general detecting so I walked for about 10 minutes to another spot I'd found some gold in the past and detected for about an hour digging plenty of shotgun pellets, completely normal in this area as there is a rabbit plague that causes countless thousands of shotgun pellets to be distributed all over the place for me to clean up 🙂 I didn't have high hopes as myself and a friend (JW) have absolutely thrashed this area but it's always possible to miss gold when there is so many pellets. We generally scrape a few times and if the signal persists dig it, if it moves after the first scrapes ignore it thinking it's very likely a pellet. A few pictures of the sort of terrain I was detecting. My batteries went down to 2 bars quite quickly, within an hour. I assume as they're rechargeable and run at 1.2 volts instead of 1.5 volts for standard AA's but it stayed at the two bars for the entire day so still plenty of life left in them yet by the looks of it. Pretty wild rocky terrain and only really suitable for smaller coils. The GPZ with it's stock coil is terrible here, the smaller the coil the better in general. I did manage to find a piece though, after a lot of pellet digs 🙂 Not a bad size bit for the area too I now decided I'd put the Whites 6" Concentric coil on and give it another go as this area doesn't have near as many hot rocks as my scrape and detect spot. I found a bit of raised bedrock and had a signal that persisted down into the schist. At this point it almost had to be gold so I started filming. And it was gold 🙂 I had to break up the schist to get it out. A nice little piece too, a roundish flat one. This area has plenty of black sand too, this was my pick after checking that bedrock in case it was a steel shotgun pellet. It was getting near time to go get some dinner and I was pretty satisfied to even get one nugget in this area but I kept going a little while longer and it paid off. I like the bulls eye sight on the 6" coil, it really is the hot spot too, great for pinpointing. I had a signal that persisted down into the gravels on the bedrock. And got this one! It's hard to tell the depth in the photo but it was a reasonable depth. A few inches anyway. And that was it for the day, I was starving! So, do I like the 24K? You're damn right I do, it certainly exceeded my expectations and will now be my primary VLF gold detector replacing my Equinox which replaced my Gold Monster, and the Gold Bug 2 was just not for me, I didn't gel with it at all especially with the masking from hot rocks. I look forward to getting more coils for the 24k, especially smaller ones, and judging by how well it handled the hot rocks I wouldn't mind a larger size coil for ground coverage too. The total for the day. Very happy with the results.
    32 points
  44. Sourdough Scott and I have been detecting hillside that has never been mined before and doing quite well with finding gold. It confounded us both as to why this location was left untouched by the early miners. When I discovered the answer it sent chills down my spine. I hate it when I start finding a lot of gold in a small area because that means I have to dig all the trash even when I know it's a tin can, shovel head, copper still, or a locomotive and I am basically a very lazy prospector. To make matters worse this spot must have been where the 1927 world champion squirrel hunting competition took place as there is an extraordinary quantity of lead and brass. There are also bits of steel cable, nuts and bolts, Caterpillar parts and hobnails from numerous logging operations which occurred there through the years. One bit of trash that caught my attention was a pristine 50 caliber musket ball as they sound exactly like a large gold nugget. I put it in my pocket and continued on. Then, not far away, I found the remains of an ancient musket. I knew this had the makings of a Detector Prospector story so I took the ball and musket home for some forensic research. Here are the horrifying results of my research findings. Upon microscopic examination of the musket ball I discovered a minute speck of fossilized blood. By using the DNA identification app on my smarty pants phone I discovered it was blood from the much feared Plumas Mammoth Grizzly! I then began analysis of the musket. By getting my 51 caliber finger stuck in the 50 caliber barrel I was able to conclude beyond any doubt that the musket was the very one that fired the bloody ball. I then closely examined the musket exterior and made three shocking discoveries! One was a patch of dried blood that proved to be from a human male of about forty years of age, dating from 1852. The next was another bloodstain that matched that which was found on the musket ball, identified as being from a Plumas Mammoth Grizzly. The third discovery (and this is where it gets scary) were bite marks which by careful measurement proved to be that of a grizzly over 11 feet tall and weighing nearly a ton! The only logical conclusion from my research is that the doomed prospector discovered the same rich deposit that Sourdough Scott and I found, became distracted with finding gold and not paying attention to his surroundings, mortally wounding the grizzly when he was attacked by surprise but was disassembled by the grizzly before it succumbed from it's wound. That is why this rich strike has remained unworked for 169 years.
    32 points
  45. I didn’t have a lot of time this morning and it’s going to rain tomorrow so I stayed close to home and hit my only old house permission. This is the same place where I detected under the floor of the old house. There’s around 3 acres at this site and I’m making my way to the areas farther from the house. Today I used the D2 in program 3 except I switched to pitch and lowered the reactivity to 2.5. I set disc at 8.5 and sensitivity to 95 and audio response to 5. Oh, I also used the x/y screen for the first time. My goal was to dig all good sounding targets. About an hour in I got a really nice sounding, solid 66 with a nice straight line on the graph. About four inches down I see yellow and out pops a small 14k wedding band. It fits my pinkie perfectly lol! After that I tried and tried to find a coin, but didn’t find a single one.
    31 points
  46. I was on the Minelab test team for the GPX 6000. I swore off doing any more metal detector reviews quite a few years ago, so I had no intention of getting involved in any of the pre-release hype, and all the drama that seems to surround such things these days. I'm an enthusiast, and people mistake my enthusiasm for bought and paid off hype, and I'd had my fill of that. That, and after Minelab marketing kicked all the crew of old-timers to the curb, I was in no mood to do them any favors either. I do like working with the engineers though - great blokes! The problem is the GPX 6000 in many ways was almost made just for me, addressing many of the complaints I have had about previous Minelab gold detectors. These mainly are not about delivering performance. Minelab does that. But the ergonomics often is poor to worse, with machines being heavy, prone to falling over when set down, or even screw together rods! So here comes a Minelab that feels like a dream on my arm, collapses for easy transport, rainproof, and yes, finds gold. I fell in love with this detector, and decided to throw caution to the wind to share that love. I poured on the coals to give people one of the largest reports I've ever created. Then the now ever present cast of internet negative Nellies showed up to rain on my parade. For various reasons I was seriously not in the mood for the BS, and just said screw it, and deleted all my GPX 6000 related commentary. The irony is I say up front I was not going to let the trolls get to me - but they did. Well, I put a ton of work into that report, including some very long days making four hour drives out and back to the desert, just to check on some final questions. It would be a shame for all that work to be lost forever, and maybe now that a year has passed, it can be seen in a different light. Was I full of it, or not? You be the judge. Here is the original version, unedited, except for typos. My thanks to jasong and Condor in helping me with getting solid comparative info on the 6K vs GPZ on salty Nevada ground. Minelab GPX 6000 – The Novel Testers and Testing I’ve been metal detecting now for nearly 50 years. I was a large multiline dealer for decades, and got involved with the manufacturers on the testing and development end of things. I’m out of the business now as a salesperson, but still dabble in detecting every day, as I’ve done for nearly my entire life now. I work with Minelab, and sometimes others, trying to improve the technology. That’s why I do it, period. I enjoy using the tech for itself, even if I’m finding nothing. I have had a particular desire to push for better ergonomics for at least the last decade, so I make the case there whenever I can. I am not required to report on the GPX 6000, and in fact when I signed up for the project, I said don’t count on it. I went way out on a limb with Equinox to bring people maximum info, but it was misread by some as a sales effort. Anyone that thinks I care about them buying a detector or not is completely clueless, and that line of thought tends to shut me down. If I was selling, I’d spam all the forums, not hide here. This is my passion, and I like being neck deep in it, but I’m not here to do anything but sell people on metal detecting. Not any one detector – metal detecting. That’s what I promote. My goal? For you to have the detector that best suits your needs. If I was to mislead you in an attempt to make you think the GPX 6000 is something it is not – how does that work? I’ve done this for a long time, I have a track record, and frankly I’m quite proud of it. Nothing in any of it is a guy pushing some brand or model. I have signed nothing that takes away my freedom of speech, and I do my best to give in-depth reports that will help people decide to buy or not, and not buying is just as good as buying in my book. Just get the right detector, if you get one, and I’m genuinely trying to help with that. So while I almost did not write this up (I was involved in Vanquish also, kept my trap shut), I’ve decided I owe it to the people who do like my reviews to ignore the ones who cast stones. That’s the last I intend to say or post on the subject of trolls, and I’m just going to get on with life and reviews as if trolls do not exist. Frankly, I’ve been whining about it, and I’m tired of my whining. But I’m free to speak my mind, and with me that’s what you get, always. One last note about testing. So I, an expert, take a new detector to a patch that I have pounded for years with every great machine possible, and I find gold. That proves something, right? Well no, not in the way people seem to think it does. I find gold. I’m good at it, and I do not consider it hard to find gold. It is hard to find a lot of gold consistently, in large quantity, but simply finding gold is easier for me than finding silver coins, were it not for the logistics of getting on site. I go out, I find gold. That’s why I’m a good tester. The finding gold part is not in question, so I’ll be able to report. Send me a detector, I will find gold with it. I can grab a twenty year old gold machine, and go find gold with it tomorrow. So what’s the point of these tests? The point is I am genuinely one of the guys that have been around forever, and my depth and breadth of knowledge about all brands of detectors, with an emphasis on gold machines, is near encyclopedic. I’ve used most of them. Some people like JP have deeper knowledge on specifics, usually very technical. But I know huge amounts about Fisher, Garrett, White’s… the entire industry is what I study. It's crazy how much I’ve put in my mind over the years, and my head works with statistics and figures very well indeed. I might not remember people’s names, but I can reel off detector specs for hours. What a person should do, if they want to get the best review out of me, is pay close attention to my opinions. They are deeply informed, and usually quite on the mark. But the fact I found gold on pounded ground with any detector? Yeah, I do that every outing. It’s not the tech, but the effort. I work for the gold, and it’s my technique that finds the gold, not the detectors. Number one tip to those who are leaving the gold I find – slow down. I spend an hour hunting an area others might cover in ten minutes or less. The harder I try, the slower I get, and there is almost no limit to my ability to concentrate while detecting. I go back to a place I cleaned out before, and I find gold again by simply trying even harder, going even slower, analyzing every sound. Sometimes better tech does make a difference, but not to the degree people might imagine. In others, like GPZ on wire gold, the tech can make all the difference. The fact I found gold on pounded ground is not that big a deal. What is important is my background, and ground I’ve hunted for years, with many detectors. I know the ground and what it does to many detectors, the hot rocks, the gold, the trash. It’s not the fact I found gold with a new machine on pounded ground, but my thoughts and observations about it that matter. Getting Older Time to come clean. I’m 63 years old now. Up until 59 I was fit as a fiddle, not feeling my age at all. Then about three years ago Condor and I were exploring a narrow gully. I was side-hilling a nearly vertical edge and slipped. I took a giant step down to gully bottom, maximum extension, and something in my lower body twisted. I had a fully herniated disc in my back when I was 21. No insurance, just toughed it out for five years. It did get better to where I forgot about it. No issues, but whatever I did reactivated that old injury. I limped home, but the pain got steadily worse. An MRI and 6 weeks of physical therapy, but that one slip changed my life forever. Three years later, and my lower back and hips are arthritic, and will only get worse. Maybe 10% left in the hips, one is half seized. Bottom line is putting on my socks is a struggle, and if you take away my digging pick I may not get back up off the ground without it! It’s humbling to go from 30 to 80 overnight, but that’s how I feel. I still have my stamina, I can go and go and go, but now it’s with constant low level pain, and I simply move slower than I used to. I’m not telling this to complain or seek sympathy. My life is great, and I never expected it to last forever. My contemporaries are all slightly older than me, and I’m getting to be one of the oldsters in nugget detecting now as the rest fade away. My time will come sooner than later, but I still have some good years left, and getting my gear tuned is part of that. I’m no longer trying to make money metal detecting gold, but simply trying to keep metal detecting. That’s why I am telling you this, so you understand it when I say ergonomics matter to me more now than ever. Old Alaskan in Nevada with Minelab GPX 6000 GPX 6000 Comes Along I had actually sworn off doing more testing, as I was burned out after Equinox, but could not resist getting drawn in on Vanquish (Equinox 400). Amazing power for the price, genuinely will give an Equinox a run with identical settings. Then a mention was made about the next big thing in nugget detecting, and it seemed like Minelab was answering my plea. I’ve been pounding the table publicly and privately for a decent ergonomic PI machine. I have also been pushing for lower prices, and so I was hoping they would do with this detector like they did with Equinox, and really upset the apple cart. I was seriously hoping the GPX 6000 would come in for less, but I fully understand as a businessman why it is what it is. People have no idea what it costs to do this stuff right, and the reason nobody else has done it is… it costs a lot of money to do! So to get the best machine possible my price lid had to come off. There are less expensive alternatives, but you will genuinely get what you pay for in this instance. For me the thing about Minelab has always been that they make the most powerful machine possible. If it weighed a lot, so be it. Ergonomics was whatever it ended up looking like. I wanted to go the other way. Can’t somebody just build for the ergonomics first, then stuff it with as much power as the ergonomic package will hold? Then build the platform performance up from there, but get the bloody package right first? The GPX 6000, like the Equinox, largely fulfills visions I have had of where detectors need to go. Equinox was low cost, and the ergonomics suffered a little for it. A more expensive version will no doubt fix that. With GPX 6000 Minelab is headed into the realm of the carbon fiber aftermarket, and leaving little to improve on. Given my situation, you might imagine why I like this detector a lot. It may add years to my detecting - Thanks Minelab! GPX 6000, the Review A brand new production level GPX 6000 showed up on my doorstep recently. As a tester, I have used all the items involved, and have the full production complement now. This review revolved around my first trip with a production unit, and with Minelab encouraging me to let it hang out, warts and all. Anyone that thinks I’m being pressured to stay quiet about anything does not get it. We are in the big boy world of detecting, and engineers want facts and feedback, and sometimes they have to hear things they do not like. My job has never been to sugar coat, but to inform. Anyway, I can’t talk about prototypes per se, but I can let my use of them and what I’ve learned inform my review with the kind of knowledge that takes hundreds of hours to acquire. It’s not my first go with a GPX 6000. The short story is the GPX 6000 is an ergonomic but powerful PI, designed to get the job done with minimum fuss. I really loved the SDC 2300 for what it is, but what it is also frustrates. The fold up housing is ultra compact and cool, but I wished often for a SDC in a normal box, with normal accessory coils. The hardwired 8” mono is limiting, and aftermarket solutions ok at best. The SDC still has its place, with compactness and price if nothing else, but head to head, and price the same it is a no brainer, 6000 every time. For a couple thousand less however, some folks will stay with or go SDC, but the GPX 6000 addresses almost everything about SDC that annoyed. Like the quiet speaker on SDC, to pick one issue. GPX will deafen if allowed. The GPX 5000 still has a place just due to coils and settings. I still think the GPX 5000 with a full coil complement is one of the most versatile and reliable solutions, for a person facing unknown circumstances. There is a setting and coil for nearly everything, especially the super size coils. On all comparisons coils provide a cheat, allowing machine performance to be modified, and muddying the waters even more. Keep in mind that most comparisons, and star charts, are stock machines with stock coils. That makes comparisons cleaner, but when people get into detectors, coils have to be part of the discussions, and you can’t beat a 5000 for coil selection. Anyone staying there, I get it, but I’ve personally moved on. Minelab GPX 6000 on typical northern Nevada low mineral/high salt soil Then there is the top dog for many, the GPZ 7000. If it is all about power and sheer performance, GPZ still rules, especially for those dabbling in aftermarket coils. The GPX is touted for small gold versus GPZ, but that is figuring stock coil to stock coil. Aftermarket coils can close that gap. If that’s the way you swing, I get it. Good buddy Jonathan Porter is sticking with his GPZ 7000 as main gun, and people inclined to do the same will find his GPX 6000 commentary more applicable to them, especially as regards Australian detecting. In my case, while I think of the GPX 6000 as being a physical reincarnation of the SDC 2300, the reality in actual use is the electronics scream “GPZ Lite” to me. The SDC 2300 has its own sound (the warble) and own way of reacting to rocks. It will ignore rocks a GPZ 7000 struggles with. When it comes to audio responses, the GPX 6000 responds to, and sounds more similar to, a GPZ 7000 than anything else I’ve used. In other words, the same hot rocks that bothered me with the GPZ 7000, tend to be the same ones I see with the GPX 6000, but identifying them seems a little easier. Long story short the SDC 2300 and 5000 still have some hot rock killing ability that GPZ and 6000 owners will envy at times. And while GPZ retains top dog honors, the fact is both machines will hit similarly on a majority of the gold, and with stock coils the 6000 has the edge on small gold. The salt performance is a major improvement, one I focused on. If you are used to salt response on a GPZ 7000, you know it’s possible to work through the moaning and groaning sounds by slowing to a crawl. I find the GPX 6000 with 17” mono to run in salt kind of like the GPZ 7000 with stock coil. In other words, I can slow to a crawl, and make it work. But go to 11” mono, and just the coil size gives you better salt handling than GPZ 7000 with stock coil, or GPX 6000 with 17” mono. The 11” I can run easily in ground that a GPZ 14 will struggle with. The DD coil goes all the way, and just eliminates the salt signal. It was designed to balance all the way to wet salt, and the GPX 6000 with 14” round DD will no doubt end up being seen on a beach or two. Remember, no discrimination, but I’m a PI beach hunter, and my GPX 6000 will be used at Lake Tahoe, and on saltwater beaches next time I get to one. Making no claims there, but I’m looking forward to Tahoe hunts especially. The 6000 coils are hollowed out underneath, and filling the gaps with heavy resin should make them work better in water. I’m going to do it and will let you all know how it goes, but will need spare coils first. The question has been asked about relative machine performance in salt, and it is a difficult question. The thing about salt signal is it overlaps part of the gold signal. Totally eliminating salt signal will eliminate a part of the gold signal, typically for the weakest targets. Yet running a coil that is saturating with salt signal also reduces sensitivity as the machine is semi-overloading and working against itself. So do you use the mono and deal with the noise, or go DD, eliminate the noise, but now you can run higher gain? I have yet to determine for myself if I am better off doing this or doing that, because the answer is more related to the exact situation on ground, than anything you can measure in a lab. My gut feeling always is to deal with noise with coil control before seeking a tech solution, so I tend to tolerate more noise than other people, and let my brain do the processing. This can be very tiring for some people, and the option to go silent via the 14” coil is a welcome option. My first gold nugget with a production GPX 6000 It’s also not as clear as people think on the DD versus mono on small targets. An 11” mono has the one big winding. The 14” DD is more like two D shaped 7” elliptical coils working in partial overlap. With the mono, the same winding transmits and receives in alternate fashion. The DD coil, one winding transmits, the other receives. Mono coils tend to be hotter near winding since the same winding puts both transmit and receive in close proximity to the target. A DD coil is more variable. If you are on the transmit side with the nugget, it gets lit up, but is distant from the receive coil. Or vice versa. The only point where you are close to both is down the middle, with hot points at each crossover area. Long story short it is trickier hitting small targets with the DD coil due to the size and complexity of the coil pattern, but people should not discount the coil entirely for small gold, as it can surprise in the right ground. I tend to favor the mono for efficiency sake, as chasing tiny bits with a big DD can get frustrating. If anything, I want a smaller mono. The 11" mono centers targets perfectly, until they get real small, and now it signals twice, once on each edge (shallow nugget signal). A smaller mono would bring even the tiny bits back to center, similar to Gold Bug 2 concentrics. The 6000 is hot on small gold, very hot, but a continuous wave (VLF) has an inherent advantage over PI on the most invisible of nuggets. You also get discrimination. So a perfect pairing for the GPX 6000 is a Gold Monster or Equinox, with small coils. These can act like powerful pinpointers, or in really trashy areas, take over from the 6000. I prefer the Equinox over Monster mainly for access to the 12”x15” coil for tailing piles, and I like to coin and jewelry hunt. The Monster serves the same purpose for those who do not care about the extra Equinox capabilities. The whole performance question on this machine will bother people, but it should not. The machine is positioned well as far as what it does, and although it may not be what the marketing folks want, thinking of the GPX 6000 as “GPX Lite” is about as simplistically accurate as I can get. I’ll hunt with GPZ owners any time, and not feel like I could not be the guy with the most gold at end of day. Maybe some of that is me instead of the detector, but the 6000 is a top performer, and anyone who is a good gold hunter can do well with it. The way I look at it is Jonathan Porter and I are a perfect example. He is younger and paying bills with gold. For him it really is not a choice. JP must use whatever he thinks will get him the most gold, and he votes GPZ 7000. I will not argue with that. I’m the guy that time caught up with. I was JP, and making money with gold really helped me a long time ago. But I’m pretty well set now, and worry not at all about paying bills with gold. The gold is getting harder to find, at the same time that my body does not want to agree to my old solutions of working harder and longer. All I can say to people like me is the GPX 6000 is as close as I can get to a GPZ 7000, without having to use a harness, bungee, or even headphones. Total freedom, I love it. As broke down as I am, I can swing a GPX 6000 with 17” mono all day with only mild soreness. The 14” DD is about the same, and 11” mono – to die for. I’ve said repeatedly, if you accept that there is a reasonable level of performance in the detector, then the best way to sell this machine is have somebody swing it. It really is a sweet setup, well balanced, comfortable grip, great audio volume, easy batteries that really do run 8 hours, take two seconds to swap. I swing a GPZ, I swing this, I know which is best for me. I know it is not true, but circumstances are such that I feel like this machine was made for me. So what don’t I like? First, the little rubber battery door catches my side every time and opens. I think the rubber did not shrink enough when cooling, or it was not made quite tight enough in the first place, but it does not grab the earphone outlet as hard as it could. That and a little tab on the cover… it pops open every time. People who use detector covers will not care or even know about it. I am going full commando however, not an extra ounce on my GPX 6000! I also am unlikely to plug in headphones, going wireless, or none at all. So my solution is to remove the rubber battery door, and plug the port with Equinox audio port plug, part number 0703-0348, $2. I suppose since I will never likely use the port I could glue or tape the cover shut, but I had some Equinox plugs sitting around, and it works for me. The other thing is the charging. Gold Monster came with alligator clip cables. So does GPX 6000. I think I have found out why. Minelab batteries and charging systems are circuit protected, and it is picky. Apparently the way some vehicles are wired, means a cigarette style outlet may, or may not work. I have several batteries, and so far have not found a cigarette charger combo for my car that works reliably. The alligator clamps work every time. So that’s the story I’m seeing, that a 12V cigarette style setup may work for your vehicle, but not the next persons. I’m going to keep experimenting, and others will also, but that is what’s going on in my opinion. And…….. what else? OK, I’d really like a smaller scrubber coil, or just more coils in general. I would like a threshold adjustment beyond on or off, but in practice it is working fine. Be nice to have disc, but it’s a PI, and in this case I think pure all metal is fine. The tone tricks still work, with most small gold going high tone, and most big gold (meaning cans) going low tone. If you have nothing but sub-gram gold, it is unlikely a low tone signal is gold. But by and large this machine is designed to have you dig everything, and sad to say, that’s the secret to success in many trashy places. Dive in and dig away, because discrimination and masking is hiding gold. Fact is, this machine is great, and the quibbles minor. People are going to have a hard time hating anything but the price on this one… and the battery door! Another gold nugget with 11" coil - it's got the depth More tidbits. Yes, the coils are hollowed out on the undersides, quite a surprise when you first pop off a scuff cover. The covers are fine, but my 11” is going to be first to wear out, due to a lot of scrubbing action on my part. When I got my machine, very first thing I put a screen protector on the LCD display. You do not need one, as the display is tough, and rarely looked at after awhile. But that’s it for me, this machine will be used as is, no covers, and be just fine. The audio is killer. I like the new headphones, but they are basically sitting here new. The GPX 6000 may be the loudest Minelab ever made. I’d bet on it. The speaker is aimed more at your ear, and it blasts! Even in the wind, I just angle a little, and hear it fine. I’ve been a person who has said you must always use headphones, but new casual Steve is saying no. No harness, no bungee, no headphones, I like it. But the wireless headphones are one of the better supplied with detectors, and if you want zero lag, plug them in. Though funny how nugget hunters do not seem to have latency issues as much as coin hunters. I’m 5’ 11” and the rod is just long enough for me, but I tend to run long, so probably good for most people up to six feet. I’m sure longer rods will happen soon, from aftermarket if not Minelab. I’ve got steveg on it for fast results. Spare lower rods are nice as I keep them mounted on my spare coils for quick swaps. And this Minelab rod is as good as anything aftermarket, so it’s only a longer lower rod people will care about. I hope Minelab starts standardizing some stuff, as a great rod like this needs to be used in more designs. It has cams that do not twist the rod when you twist the cam, making positioning easier than I would have anticipated. I do not miss alignment holes at all, and sometimes a weird angle is nice, like on a side hill. The lower rod has a loose ball incorporated into the yoke, which seems to allow for a little play to prevent breakage? The coils use the new Vanquish style bolts without a nut, which seemed odd to me at first, but again, has worked well so far. The new design uses a new rubber washer, the teardrop is gone, so we will be looking for a part number there. Yes, the machine can be updated over the internet. That is standard for Minelab now. One screw to remove speaker grill, and a little rubber plug hides the micro USB port. I’m not sure we will ever see an update, but if a bug crops up, the ability is there. But I’d not anticipate it getting used, as the machine is well dialed. Still, 1000 users can find what handfuls of testers miss, so you have insurance by way of the update process. I warned you this would be long! Let's Go Detecting I was up at 3am, drive two hours, top off gas, two more hours to gold patch. I started detecting at 8am, cool but nice. Typical low mineral soil for the area, but high in salt content, dried salt crusting some areas. Gully bottoms are really hot with it. There are a couple types of hot rocks that bother GPZ, and 6000 also, though not quite as bad. Deep damp clay can create nice soft nugget signals. And this location has a scattering of trash, which is why I can always find gold. I never give up until nothing goes beep, and there are lots of beeps left here. I approach a patch as a multi year project, and slowly eat away at the trash, until even that gets sparse. Discrimination in nice, but trash will hide a nugget easily, and so in the long run you really do need to dig it all. The 6000 advocates for that by design. I started with the 11” mono. Machine on, super fast EMI reject. I encourage people to review the short manual very carefully. Minelab has a well thought out process that leads you to correct settings and coils, but for me all detector tuning boils down to my seeking a balance where I can get a little ground feedback, and in general I prefer a threshold. This ground allows for a low mineral setting. Engaging Difficult is subtle in this ground, and hard to tell the difference. Difficult helps a little with the hot rocks, but they are few enough that I prefer to dig or kick rather than tune out. In general I do nothing to reduce signals unless I can’t stand it anymore. Even then, the solution is to slow down or take a break. So low mineral setting, and max manual sensitivity, with threshold. No headphones, so volume set as a comfortable threshold tone. The volume is kind of your threshold control also, and I'm setting it more for the threshold then the max target volume. If using headphones, I do prefer headphones with a volume control. The GPX 6000 volume/threshold control only has five steps, so using a secondary headphone volume control gives you more granular control over the volume. The GPX 6000 headphones do include a volume control. I go aftermarket and dual volume controls, not because I do not like the Minelab phones, but because I have hearing loss in one ear, and an unbalanced sound bugs me. The time of day can matter, especially with transient EMI, and noise just arises sometimes out of nowhere. The EMI tune is very fast, so I use it often, as well as a quick ground balance. It’s just too easy, so do it whenever things seem squirrely. I first hit an spot where I’ve pulled small gold and trash before in fairly loose, sandy soil. I had the GPX cranked up as described, and used the coil as a bulldozer to plow through and flatten everything. There is no knock sensitivity, but tiny hot rocks will create some noise, and so scrubbing may not work, but for tiny gold it is one of my main methods. If I can only hit a speck at one centimeter, it stands to reason that removing a centimeter of soil exposes a whole new layer to the windings. In loose soil, I use the coil to push stuff around and work the coil into the sand. On sidehills I pull soils downhill with the coil, scraping away. If I can’t get the detector to go deep enough, then I will make the gold more shallow. I work slowly and methodically, and I nearly always succeed in finding gold I missed the time before. I just keep at it, getting more down and dirty on each run, and always, trash is going away. 1 hour 45 minutes to first nugget, 0.191 gram on my new super accurate scale I bought just for weighing tiny bits. By noon I had three more bits, the smallest 0.052 gram. My big tip for small gold and trash? Have the right tools. I put together a long handle pick, and a small shovel, both with magnets attached. I get that tiny signal, I get it to move by scraping with foot or digging. As soon as it moves, 11” coil is on edge, get an idea where the target is, then stab it with the magnet. I keep the magnet on the pick head, and half the time the signal is gone, and on magnet, just from digging. I’m not getting down looking for the target unless the magnet fails. Since the majority of targets are ferrous, this saves a lot of looking for targets, and getting up and down. The shovel is for deeper holes, with magnet on end of handle. Do this, and you can work trash without killing yourself. And when the magnet fails (it's a nugget or bullet), you better have a scoop, and have learned to master scoop recovery. This all only works if you get efficient, and do not waste time with bits of invisible wire. Short break at noon, swap to 17” mono. I hate to talk about this coil, as you all can’t get one quite yet. Sorry, no idea when either. But it is a sweetie, and may end up my most used coil. It’s light as a feather, and has some kind of flat winding that makes it nearly as hot as the 11” on small stuff. I’m serious. The coil does not punch as deep as the GPZ 14, or so I’m told, and I’d not doubt that, as it is designed more as a patch hunting coil. It covers ground like crazy, but will hit the tiny bits that can lead to a patch. Could be a killer meteorite coil, though I’m not sure how Geosense handle meteorites. I suspect it will be fine. Anyway, most of my prior testing was doing just that, covering ground, and it is sweet for that. This time I went for deeper gold in the salty ground, and as noted before, it’s not unlike running a GPZ14 in salty ground. I’ve hit this ground a long time, and big nuggets are first to go, but it's early spring, so I went after places where the grass was too deep on previous visits. Again, it’s this acquired knowledge that brings success, not so much magical new machines. This area was low, with lots of salt, so you get a long dragging high tone one way, and a long dragging low tone the other way. The slower you move, the less moan and groan. Better yet, by angling directly into and away from the salt source (usually the gully bottom), you can even out these opposing forces, to get a smoother audio flow. It’s all about very slow, very careful coil control, and a tuned ear. Most people need a beep to stop them, but I hear every bit of the audio flow. My brain finds the pattern, and then notices breaks in the pattern. In a nutshell, there are the “normal noises” that make up the background flow, but every once in awhile something different happens. A little extra edge, a warble, maybe a pause in the threshold. Why? The longer I’ve hunted the ground, the more accurately I can answer the “why” through countless similar targets having been dug. I slowly tune to the ground and target mix, and if it is questionable, just dig it. Even if not, I’m often digging just to make it go away, even if I know it is trash. Every trip I bring a garbage bag, and clean up stuff. It’s all about a long range project to uncover more gold. Well, that deep grass area paid off. The 17” got a nice nugget at depth. No, I did not measure the depth. I dig well past nuggets half the time so it's just a guess, and I don’t like guessing. Just trust me when I say I thought this was impressive for a big mono coil in salty ground. The nugget weighs 1.099 grams – nice! The same spot gave up two flat pieces, one 0.512 gram, the other 0.792 gram. I was very pleased with this result, as all had some depth to them. Deeper gold digs with the 17" mono That little spot played out but I kept at it until I got a low battery signal at 4pm. Nice thing about the 6000, you get time after the first warning, so I detected another 20 minutes before taking a break. Battery swap, back at it, and one more nugget at 6:40pm. That’s a long day – done! Next morning I switched back to the 11” mono, but my small gold spot was not lucky, and by noon all I had was trash. Finally picked up another nugget after lunch, 0.538 gram. Now, I’m out of shape on top of everything else, and lack of gold is making me want to quit. So I played the “just one more nugget" card, and went back to 17” mono. That little trick got me to 4:30 and one last nugget, 0.296 gram. So a quick overnighter, nine nuggets, five larger with 17” mono, and four smaller with 11” mono, at 4.293 grams total. I’m sure I have not covered everything is this long ramble. Feel free to ask anything you want, and I’ll answer the best I can. Just do not think because I like the detector I’m trying to sell you on it. I honestly am not concerned about what detectors other people buy and use. I just use what works for me, and this is working really well for me. No claims to any magic, just a really nice swinging machine, which will get you GPX 5000/GPZ 7000 type ballpark performance, one way or the other, but ballpark, and that’s good enough for me. It’s one of several of the most powerful gold detectors on the market, and all of them have fan clubs. Even this one, says fan number one. If you prefer to use something else, good for you! If anything I said resonated with you, then maybe take a look at the GPX 6000. I hope this helps. Please do not repost without permission. Thanks, Steve Herschbach, May 2021 Postscript March 2022 - I mention hip and back pain in the post. It did only get worse, and this last winter I bit the bullet, and had a full replacement done of both hips. Miracles of modern medicine, the pain is gone! My back is still stiff and does not bend like it used to, but at least I can now walk without every step hurting more than the last. Many thanks to the wonderful people at Reno Orthopedic Center - they gave me a second lease on life! Nuggets found April 20-21 in northern Nevada with GPX 6000 Here is about a 1/2 ounce of California (left) and Nevada (right) gold I found while testing GPX 6000 prototypes: Gold nuggets found by Steve while involved in GPX 6000 testing
    31 points
  47. Sorry I have not been posting for a while, but you know I get the itch to swing and just do it. I just returned from a nice short and warm weather trip down South in Arizona. Tried my luck again at Meteorite Hunting with a metal detector. As a veteran detectorist with near 50 yrs, I can assure you this. I know how hard it is to find gold, but swinging a detector across the desert floor while trying to find space rocks, put my body to a real test. In fact, I'll have to admit, chasing meteorites is harder than hunting gold nuggets. Yes I found a few and walked/hiked more miles than I care to talk about. I didn't take a pick of my pack, but loaded it with drinks, my typical survival gear, a days worth of food and off I was. Found out really fast, I am only getting about 7 to 8 hrs of actual use on 1 battery of my GPX-6000, but luckily I took a spare. The pics are of some Black Gold Arizona meteorites and no I couldn't fit the big one in my mouth. Has anyone else tried hunting meteorites before and do you agree how hard it is? Maybe it was because this was my 1st trip for 2022 and my body has not been tuned yet.
    31 points
  48. Weatherman claimed sunny and 50 degrees today so last night I charged batts and dug all my crap out to get ready for todays hunt! Grabbed the 2300 and the Monster and headed out this morn, 24 degrees when I left the shack. I get to the area I figured should have little if any snow...but NOOOOO. Had to use 4WD, trees across road from previous windstorm so had to hike in, couple inches snow with a few bare spots. Sun never did cut through the fog and hands/feet got real cold. Managed to pop 3 littles (.9g) so actually had a good day considering. SDC got 2 and the Monster got one. Glad I got out even though anyone with half a brain would have stayed home....lol Had a great season and best part is property owners have invited me back for next season. This is the last of them for this season...I'm done!!
    31 points
  49. I never dreamed I would find a spot like I did today, turned out to be my best silver coin day ever!! I've been on a 6 day hunt starting last Wed and ending Tuesday morning when I head home. I've been hitting a couple parks in the town I'm staying in and a couple of surrounding towns as well. I managed to get into some producing spots and have done pretty well with multiple silver days everyday. Today, my plan was to drove over to a town about 60 miles from here and hit a pretty big park that's been around awhile. I got up early, grabbed some breakfast and hit the road. About 20 miles in, I figure out I forgot my phone, so, I head back to the motel. I decided to stay here and look for a new spot so I googled the town and saw a couple of parks and schools that I decided to go check out. Well, none were in older neighborhoods, so I headed to a park that had produced last year. As I'm driving over there, I see an old high school that's been renovated and drive around back and see a big open area with old backstops in each corner. I decided what the heck, might as well stop and swing awhile, maybe I'll get lucky and find a wheat or 2 I started out in front of one of the backstops and get a copper hit. The shovel slid easily into the ground and I pulled out a memorial. I move straight out towards the pitchers mound and get another penny signal. I go to dig a plug and the ground was hard as a rock, nothing but compacted rock and gravel. I take my pinpointer and scan the ground, thankfully I got a hit. I began to chisel my way thru the rocks and pop out a wheat, oh yes, it's on now. The next target was another wheat, again, within range of the pinpointer, out pops another wheat. Now I'm getting excited, within 5 minutes I have 2 wheats, that's good sign. The next 2 hits were funky signals and turned out to be mercs, both shallow and picked up by the pinpointer. Every swing of the coil sounded like a machine gun, 6-7 iron targets per swing. I'm in the middle of an iron infested spot, with compacted ground. I hunted for the next 30 minutes and ended up with 3 merc and 6 wheats, no clad, I'm only 45 minutes into this hunt and it's only 8:15 am, gonna be a long day lol. This old playground area is about 1 square block, so, I head off toward the other backstop and within 50 I get a hit. The ground is as soft as butter and out comes a clad dime. I hunted about 30-45 minutes at the other backstop and dug nothing but deep clad. I realized real quick that the spot I was in must have been avoided because of the rock hard ground and all the iron so I headed back. I decided to start grid off the area and see how far this hot spot goes. Turns out it's roughly a 60-70 foot area in front of the backstop. The soil outside of this spot is completely different and relatively trash free. I guess they dug out the original soil and missed this area, I have no idea. I hunted all day, started at 7:30 and called it quits at 5:45 when I quit digging keepers. I never thought I would stumble on a place like this just out of pure dumb luck. I'm glad I decided to stay in town. I ended up beating my single day silver coin finds of 13. Sorry for any grammar or punctuation errors, I'm celebrating with a couple of cold ones:)
    31 points
  50. Excalibur Rules! Summer season is now over, took me a few hunts in June to find a decent spot but It's been giving every since, 13 straight hunts with gold. July 3rd to Sept 4th ..........Summer gold count 30, 27 Gold rings, 3 misc. Gold (174 grams)....130 Silvers, mostly coins.......the July 3rd gold was with the AQ..which is setting for right now ...... due to the amount of time I can get out and hunt, the AQ requires a lot more work when hunting and the excalibur fits the one spot perfect and finds gold...... Kind of Funny, I posted this on a Excalibur Facebook Page and Got a over whelming response, and had a few, I guess who had never seen a Class ring and a few thought they were fake rings? Anyway all worked out, had to delete a couple of the post to keep the peace. Come on Fall! And the Silver..as bad as it gets..bay is terrible on it.
    31 points
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