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Steve Herschbach

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  1. Hi Keith, Yes it does though how trustworthy the iron check is has yet to be determined. I actually got out and got some time in on real gold ground today with the backpack setup. As set up cable length is fine but a bit short if I try and do a long reach under brush. The machine ran extremely well on red ground, full gain rock solid threshold and no coil falsing. The detector once ground balanced acted like the ground was not there. May as well have been waving the coil in the air. The machine was scary stable and way, way more pleasant to use. I did not find any gold but did find a number of .177 airgun pellets. Pretty small target. The ground was steep, 45 degrees or more in places. Lots of rocks and brush. I would not have liked the full ATX here on my arm at all and the stock coil would have been hard to maneuver. The backpack version with smaller coil was perfect for this scenario. Looking better all the time.
  2. Akau/Alaska Gold and Resort,L.L.C. started pay-to-mine operations in 2012 on historic mining claims in the vicinity of Anvil Creek near Nome. Anvil Creek was a very rich creek and many large gold nuggets came from this area. I was busy in 2012 but several friends visited the mine and initial results were very promising. Nome Nugget Newspaper - See cover and page 16 Another article Wow! Over thirty ounces in the group. My enthusiasm cooled a bit though when I found out most of it came out of a rich pocket that was found and shared. But then again, any one person could find a pocket like that, right? That is a major score. I really agonized over whether to visit in 2013. But I had prospects of my own in Alaska to visit where I did not have to pay a fee. The prospects did not look as good, but I did not have to find nearly as much to call it a profitable trip. It may not be quite as fun but I do actually have to make a profit prospecting when I can so it all goes into my mental calculator. I heard they were getting access to new ground on Anvil Creek, and good buddy Ken was popping with excitement at the prospects. I did not go, but I just knew here was going to make me really regret it. Then, a weird split arrangement was put in place for access to the new ground. I ran a pay-to-mine myself and this smelled like trouble to me, so that cemented my decision to see how it went before going. They run late into the fall so I just figured I would go in the fall if I heard big things. Well, I guess things went well but the news was if anything quieter than 2012. Lots of nice gold found in 2013 but not the huge nuggets I think that some were expecting. I ended up after my over a month of detecting in July ready for a break so I did not visit AKAU. Now 2014 is coming. The bottom line is AKAU is the best pay-to-mine metal detecting gig going in Alaska now as far as I can see. The owners are super nice people and trying hard. New operation still needs tuning from what I hear, but they really are trying hard to make people happy, and that is what counts. There really is a good shot at a one ounce plus nugget, and that is a rare opportunity indeed. Long story short at least four members of the forum have been there, Bob, Keith, Ken, and Tom. I am hoping they will chime in with a report. Mainly just telling people what to expect. Never having been there but having been to Ganes Creek and Moore Creek many times I already can tell people one thing. If you are looking to pay the fee plus air fares etc. and make a profit, do everyone a favor and do not go. Not if that is what you truly expect and if you will be unhappy otherwise. These things are a gamble and in most cases the trip is going to cost you more in money than you will make in gold. If even half the people could do that they would close up shop and start mining ASAP. But if you have the right attitude these things can be a real blast. I think this is well worth consideration. So please guys, share your experiences with us. Thank you in advance! Akau/Alaska Gold and Resort,L.L.C. AKAU Facebook
  3. The server does not know where you live. Go to your settings in upper right corner and then set your time zone from the drop down box. I just changed the server default to Pacific Time. But then the default will be off for people elsewhere. Only real answer is set your own time zone. But it should be much closer now.. Thanks! Good to hear from you Bob. Now that I am a westerner instead or a northerner Montana is on my radar. Southwestern Montana is where most of the gold is so just head south. There are very good prospecting opportunities there but it is same old story. Have to do the research to find good geology, then sort out the land issues. I am pretty well tied up with other stuff right now but Montana may happen in 2015 for me. Link to Libby Creek etc Gold in Montana Montana Bureau of Mines & Geology Mineral Deposits of Montana Montana BLM Montana Forest Service Montana Abandoned Mines Active Mines in Montana 2012 How to Mine and Prospect for Placer Gold - at ICMJ website Geology and ore deposits of the Philipsburg quadrangle, Montana 1913, Emmons, W. H.; Calkins, F. C. USGS Professional Paper: 78 Gold placer deposits of the Pioneer district, Montana 1951, Pardee, Joseph Thomas USGS Bulletin: 978-C Gold Placers of Montana - 2005 Reprint of 1948 report. Out of print. Can't find online copy so far. The following will get you started on where. The land status you are on your own. Lots of patented ground (private property) and lots of mining claims. The map and accompanying pamphlet were done in 1992 and so are very up-to-date as far as locations. Big pdf download on map so be patient. My computer choked on it a bit in Adobe Reader. Excellent resource though, your basic treasure map. I will be adding it to our online library soon. U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR U.S. GEOLOGICAL SURVEY MINERAL INVESTIGATIONS RESOURCES MAP MR-96 MAP SHOWING THE LOCATION OF PRODUCTIVE LODE AND PLACER GOLD MINES IN MONTANA By David Frishman, I.E. Elliott, E.E. Foord, R.C. Pearson, and W.H. Raymond 1992 MAP PAMPHLET WITH LOCATIONS SHOWN ON MAP
  4. OK, looks like John is talking about nothing really. Second hand information, no photos allowed, etc. Very iffy on size or specific model.
  5. Paul, how long is that circuit board exactly? Can that end sticking out be cut off? Your sketch looks nice indeed. White's style drop in battery box would be good. Who knows, I started pushing for a waterproof TDI from the day I set hands on a prototype in 2007. Here we are all these years later, no waterproof TDI. I do understand however underwater machines are problematic for the manufacturers. So maybe pushing the other direction for a dry land machine can get more traction.
  6. Hi Paul, Very nice! Thank you for posting that, it helps a lot. Yes, I think the prospecting world needs a dry land version of the ATX. With regular headphone jacks and regular coil connectors. It is not going to happen this summer but if I completely destroy my ATX housing using it in sandy water then at some point maybe ATX number one gets stripped down and I get another one. The problem is I really want the machine more for water use than prospecting so for now it needs to stay waterproof. My ATX and Lake Tahoe are going to get to know each other very well! After Hawaii it will need a lot of time in fresh water to get all the salt out. I may spend as much time water detecting as prospecting this year. Seriously, I envision this detector that is an ATX electronically. It is a fantastic piece or work in that regard - Brent did a smash up job on the electronics. But a machine designed from the ground up physically for prospecting, no quarter given. Should be able to easily cut the weight in half, to about 3.5 lbs. And should cut the cost significantly, but if I was Garrett I would not cut it much. I would MSRP at $2350 and MAP price it at $1999. That would be one hot detector, and perfect for the world-wide market. And well worth the price.
  7. The churn drill was one of the most innovative and important tools for placer prospecting in Alaska. Prospectors used to sink shafts by hand many tens of feet to bedrock, often in frozen ground. Now they could test far more ground far faster and with less effort. From the attached article: "In 2009, miners who were cleaning up an old mining claim near Coldfoot, Alaska, donated a 1920s-era churn drill to the Bureau of Land Management. The drill, rusted and overgrown with willows, might not have looked impressive to many, but BLM Central Yukon Field Office Archaeologist Bill Hedman found that it was surprisingly intact. In the early 20th century, gas-powered churn drills like this one had offered Alaska placer miners a major technological advance, allowing them to dig a test hole through frozen gravel much more quickly and efficiently than with picks and shovels. Hedman decided this piece of Alaska mining history warranted some fixing up…" FULL ARTICLE http://www.akbizmag.com/Alaska-Business-Monthly/November-2013/A-Relic-of-Alaskas-Mining-Past-Roars-to-Life/
  8. Hi Steve, Can you post the link to the mention on the other forum? I do not care if other forums get linked, mentioned, or talked about here. I am not able to find such a coil being made for the Gold Bug Pro or Teknetics G2 (same detector). I fact I can't even find a 14" x 12" Excelerator coil for anything. There is a 15" x 12" but not for the GPB. Kellyco is the Excelerator dealer at http://www.kellycodetectors.com/excelerator/EXcelleratorMain.htm Love the depth diagrams there - what a joke! As a general rule do not expect depths on coin size targets with a VLF to much exceed the narrowest diameter of the coil. On coils over 12" the depth gains are minimal and wil actually go backwards in bad ground. I do know when I put a heavy coil on a very light detector I end up not liking it. Weight is a big factor. I got the 15" DD Fisher coil for my F75 and hated it. Used it exactly once and sold it. Totally ruined the balance and feel of the detector. I do have a white 13" Detech Ultimate DD that I got for my F75 that is exceptionally light. I found out my F75 coils seem to work on my Gold Bug Pro although they are not an exact match for it. That coil seemed to give me a magic extra 1/2" on larger nuggets on my F75 but it may have been psychological. Anyway, I mention this as the 15" x 12" Excelerator coil for the F75 may work on the Gold Bug Pro. I have heard a lot of good things about the 12" x 10" Excelerator of other detectors, 15" not so much. The biggest "big" coil that I have and trust 100% for my Gold Bug Pro is the black 11" elliptical DD. Be aware a VLF is not a PI and going bigger coils does not always give you more depth. In bad ground a big coil sees more ground and so the gain may have to be backed off to compensate, pretty much leaving you where you started. In extreme ground you will get less depth with a big coil on a VLF! If you want more ground coverage with a big VLF coil they will do that but do not expect much in the extra depth department. If you want that, break out your Minelab.
  9. Mine does have the hip mount clip on it - all TDI and TDI Pro models do I believe. The SL is rod mount only. I do like hip mounting it but I push it back over my wallet pocket. That way it is not in way when I bend over. It also comes with clips for chest mounting and I am going to rig a harness for that. It keeps the controls more accessible and less prone to getting knocked around. It also puts less strain on the coil cable where it enters the control box. Hip mounting tends to be hard on cables. The 6x9 is a good coil. There is a reason that size coil comes on so many nugget detectors. Just a good size, covers ground sweeping sideways, narrow for poking into places, and solid so as to not hang up on stuff.
  10. The GMT SuperPulse is a stripped down TDI SL. Locked into ground balance mode, factory preset at Pulse Delay of 10, no Target Conductivity switch. So just get a TDI SL, leave it in ground balance mode, leave the Pulse Delay set at 10, and leave the Target Conductivity switch set for both, and you are good to go. I heard a rumor Jimmy Sierra can get them. I guess I should call and find out. Would not be a bad unit if the price was low enough.
  11. That is fantastic Bob! What does the flat solid piece weigh? Thanks for posting!
  12. Hi, I determined that Garrett Infinium DD (not mono) coils work with the Garrett ATX. That opened the door for some kind of hip or chest mount. But the control box is large enough and with the handle sticking out not really working out the way I wanted in that regard. A nice thing about the ATX is it retains all settings when switched off. So in any location it is just set and forget. The headphones have adjustable volume controls. I went with backpack mount. I got a cheap but surprisingly nice backpack at Walmart for $20 that was the right size with extra pockets and well padded. I put the control box in nose first and punched a small hole in one lower corner pocket for the coil cable to enter the backpack. The cable comes around under my right arm. The headphones just route out top of the backpack zipper and to my left side. The headphones tuck into an exterior pocket for packing around and I could break the rod assembly down and stow it also if need be. The rods would stick out of the top of the backpack a bit but in reality I would just leave it assembled unless shipping. The only thing I want to do now is use the headphone adapter dongle to rig an external speaker on one backpack strap near my ear like I do with my Minelab. Kinda crazy doing this but bottom line is it is sweet. I hope to get out in a few days and give the new setup with 10" x 5" DD coil a spin prospecting. I ran the rig for two hours in a tot lot and it was great. Very sensitive to tiny targets. The coil does not false when knocked about like the stock ATX coil. Should be an excellent prospecting setup for rough terrain. Coil and rod part numbers at https://www.detectorprospector.com/magazine/steves-reviews/garrett-atx-metal-detector-accessories/
  13. Hi Paul, I already ran into this in a small way at Lake Tahoe and have minor scratching on the rods. Obviously Garrett ran into is since it gets mentioned in the manual: Keep the detector clean, especially the touchpad and telescoping stem assembly. The ATX stems should never be collapsed and allowed to dry when the unit is muddy or sandy, or after any underwater use. Saltwater and even freshwater sediment can inhibit the easy operation of the stems and stem nuts. Rinse the unit with fresh water to remove sand, sediment, etc., and wipe down with a clean cloth. Hold the ATX under running fresh water to rinse off sediment. Vigorously rotate the stem nuts back and forth and work the stems in and out while under the running water to help flush any grit from within the stem nuts. Flush any debris from the stem rotation lock as well. I read that and I thought "oh-oh". I can see these babies getting locked up tight. So I was already prepared for trouble there. I am a big fan of the ATX electronically. It performs well. But I am not a fan of the Recon housing. Yes, it is really cool. But for dry land use it is way too heavy. Garret hit a home run with the other AT detectors by making them waterproof without losing functionality or adding weight. The weight penalty on the ATX for dry land use is, well, extreme. For water the situation is not as bad, but the machine is large enough to provide lots of resistance in water and must literally be pushed through the water. The sand in the shaft and cams is an issue and even more worrisome is the mechanism where the coil and shaft pivot. It is impossible to take apart and clean properly. I honestly would have preferred an ATX in Infinium housing instead of the ATX in Recon housing as the Infinium can be hip or chest mounted on land and is better suited for use in water. I have my ATX pack mounted (another post) but the cables on the ATX coils are not long enough so I am limited to Infinium coils. Bottom line is I am determined to use the ATX in the water as it is built and let the cards fall where they may. I will go to utmost efforts to follow Garrett's instructions. Maybe the ATX is like the Minelab CTX - a waterproof detector you are afraid to put in the water! But yeah, I decided I needed insurance. My new White's Surf PI Dual Field showed up yesterday. Thanks for the warning!
  14. The DetectorPro units do not ground balance and so offer no discrimination capability, which is a side effect of the ground balance circuit. If you are looking for bottom dollar in a ground balancing PI that would be the Garrett Infinium.
  15. Hey Rick, did you get that book by Jim Straight called Successful Drywashing? I found out I have a spare copy. PM or email your mailing address and I will send it to you.
  16. Hi... Shannon, is it? Welcome to the forum, and thanks for joining! By the way your website needs work. Tons of broken image links. Email sent.
  17. My wife and I still watch the news in Alaska. This article really caught my eye. Pretty amazing story. Lost in the Hawaii sand, a ring finds its way back to Alaska newlyweds BY JULIA O'MALLEY Anchorage Daily News / adn.com January 7, 2014 http://www.adn.com/2014/01/07/3262784/lost-in-the-hawaii-sand-a-ring.html
  18. Hello Mr. Gaber (too many Steve's here!) glad you joined the forum. Your expertise is valuable indeed. Just wanted to mention on this thread my use of the Keene RC-1. It is relatively inexpensive at MSRP $1095 and a bit different in how it works. It takes 1" or smaller rock and slings it at high speed at a steel plate using centrifugal force. The rock basically explodes like you shot it from a gun. It is very effective on hard material. However the resulting material varies in size so needs to be screened and oversize run trough again. An interesting thing about it is since the rock is exploded, gold comes out of the rock relatively intact. This would be good for ore with chunky gold enclosed because the gold does not get ground down and is easier to recover. Because there is no grinding going on wear and tear is minimal, and replacement parts cheap and easy to install. The unit is also very portable and being gas powered can be run anywhere. All in all one of Keene's better values.
  19. OK, thanks. So you must be Ken Walls? I will look you up for sure and see what you have. That way I know where to send people - I try and support the local guy.
  20. The TDI Pro is basically the same unit as the standard TDI and appears to have officially replaced it. The Pro is set up with dual ground balance controls and a volume control to get a finer tune and a better threshold. But those features were mainly aimed at it being sold in Australia along with a plain 12" round mono instead of the 12" Dual Field mono. The Dual Field is a bit too hot for Aussie ground. The bottom line is it gave White's a unit they could sell in Australia as the original TDI was not quite up to the task there. White's offered both the TDI and TDI Pro for some time with only a minimal price difference but it really makes no sense to make both. I would not be surprised if some dealers still have some standard TDI models. The main difference right now is the cut the Pro back to one battery and so if you can find a bit older unit new on somebodies shelf right now you may still be able to get two batteries with the unit. The TDI sucks up a 14.4V rechargeable battery pack in a day so having the backup is nice. The TDI SL with a 12V battery gets sucked up in 4-5 hours! You do not want to use AA batteries in it unless you own a battery factory. It comes with one rechargeable pack but figure on buying another one right off. One for the first half of the day and one for the second half of the day.
  21. I really want you to try it before I count it in! I am a bit skeptical of the Deus as a nugget detector. Might be the cat's meow for other things but prospecting is another thing. I do not need another coin machine so too much for me just to buy and try.
  22. What shop do you own whylee? OK to give yourself a plug here! Then I can come visit. The SL is very light at only 3.5 lbs and very well balanced. It is one of those detectors that feels good on my arm. The battery pack was dropped down below optimum to allow for a 12V AA battery pack and noise suppression engaged to create a more stable threshold. This all adds up to a less expensive, smoother operating nice and light detector, but one that gives up a bit of an edge in depth. Honestly not enough to matter to most people but it admittedly disappointed some people who had a TDI and were looking for more power, not less. I had a TDI SL myself and really liked it but I could not get over the feeling I was giving up that 1/4" I wanted. So I sold it and got another standard TDI. Don't read too much into that though. Digger Bob, a real TDI guru, prefers his TDI SL. Coils is kind of a personal thing but I really like the 7.5" coil almost more than the 12" coil myself. I may have to pick another one up. Can't really say you need one though. I just like smaller coils for poking around.
  23. Yes, they are still in production. Whites only sells it through dealers and their website only has a setting for "out of stock". They really need to fix that. I will remind them as they are aware of it but it has not been fixed. They are in stock and available through TDI certified dealers. Just my opinion but I think White's makes it too hard to buy a TDI.
  24. "When I first put my jewelry studio together, I had one of those $99 steamers and was disappointed with its performance" This is one of those times where I get to say, "if I was a pro like you". If I was a pro like you Steve I would get a real steam cleaner. Problem for me is I do not know that I need one at all, but for $99 i will play with one. If it turns out I really need a better one I will. What model do you have? I do have an ultrasonic. Another cheapie but it works real well at shaking grime out of crevices.
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