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  • Location:
    KY, USA
  • Gear Used:
    Fisher F2, V340, AT Max, F-Pulse and Garrett Carrot (modified to run off of AAA batteries).

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mh9162013's Achievements

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  1. Definitely a lot of competing interests in these types of situations. But like you recognize mn90403, it's not easy to find lost items. I get the "but I'm the rightful owner, so I deserve to get it back" interest. But if treasure hunters can't at least keep a % of what they find, they'll be motivated to either stop hunting or do it in secret so they don't need to report anything. In either situation, te rightful owner gets nothing. Maybe it's just me, but I'd rather have the option of paying a finders fee to get my lost item returned than have no option of ever getting it back. Even with a law that allows finders to keep a certain % of what they find, some finders will still try to hide their finds so they keep 100% of it. However, they will be in violation of the law and have to constantly worry about what happens if they get caught. Sure, many unscrupulous people can live like that, but I think a lot of people would be motivated to follow the law if that means sleeping better at night. Kind of a tangent, but I think this is why organized crime isn't what is used to be. There are so many ways to "game the system" in a legal manner, why would a "wise guy" break the law to earn $1,000 when they can abide by the law and earn $950? I'm no expert in organized crime, but there's definitely a price to pay by breaking the law, even if you never get caught.
  2. That's good to know about the F44. Thanks again for your help.
  3. Thanks for your advice about the N/M models. I haven't done much research on them, but from the videos I've seen online, their sounds don't sit well with me. As for the T2/F70/F75 models, I strongly considered them as they seemed to have great recovery speed and target separation. But they aren't waterproof or even weather proof. After having to end a few hunts due to rain with my Vanquish and detecting once or twice in a heavy downpour with my AT Max, I don't want to use a detector as my primary machine unless it's at least weatherproof. I guess a Fisher F44 is an option, but I don't think they're worth the money. Although maybe I'll find a great deal on one on Facebook Marketplace... I live in western Kentucky, so there's a lot of farmland. But when it comes to yards and parks, there's always the clay. The only question is how much less-mineralized soil is on top of the clay. In many parks that I hunt, there is no soil on top of the clay. In the others, there's plenty of milder soil, but it's almost always fill dirt with a ton of trash in it. I think right now, I'm going to work on a making Monte's Nail Board and run some tests on all my machines. If I can bring myself to spend the money, I'll also get a 5x8 coil for the AT Max and an Equinox 600 and test those, too. Thanks for your insight, Jeff, much appreciated.
  4. Sounds like your "issue" with the F-Pulse is different than mine as I'm always able to avoid the slight beeps by turning my F-Pulse on with the tip touching the soil. The Garrett Carrot also has this issue with my clay, although only when on max sensitivity. I almost always hunt with my F-Pulse in medium sensitivity. Yes, it is odd. I remember taking my Vanquish (540 with the V12 coil, back then) in my backyard after a recent rain and literally every few yards, I was getting a quarter VDI (low 30s and upper 20s). I dug about 5 holes and every time, there was nothing by soggy clay. And the most frustrating thing was that these ghost signals were sharp and distinct, indistinguishable from a coin signal. I agree, 100%. And this is the primary reason I sold my 540 (but still have the 340) and got the AT Max. So my AT Max with ground balancing is able to see targets in or around this clay better than my Vanquish can. It's probably not as good as the Equinox, but it's good enough for me (maybe ignorance is bliss). But this current concern about the AT Max's difficulty seeing through trash is not good enough for me. You may be right. I have no idea what kind of high mineralization I'm experiencing, but w/e it is, it's high enough to create significant problems with my Vanquish 540 such that I sold it and effectively traded it in for my AT Max.
  5. I agree that my F-Pulse falsing is a bit odd. You're right, it could be EMI or something other than the mineralization, but I think it's the soil. I say that because the F-Pulse will be silent until the tip of the pinpointer gets within an inch or so of the ground. Then it gives the "slight" beep of a potential target that's barely within range. But when I retune it (or reboot it) with the tip touching the ground, this problem goes away. As for my soil profile, you're on point. Depending on where I hunt, the clay layer is either exposed to the surface (many parks I hunt at are like this) or it's covered by 1-4 inches of dark, mild soil filled with earthworms. Unfortunately, I've found plenty of coins (all clad) within the clay. But these were in areas where the clay was exposed to the air or there was 2 inches or less of soil before you hit the clay. I run my Vanquish (340) with the V8 coil, but I haven't noticed that big of an improvement over the stock Garrett AT Max coil in the limited times I've hunted with it in the same trashy areas where I first used my AT Max. But then again, I have a feeling that no matter what coil size you use, if the ground is so trashy that swinging a coil in zero discrimination mode sounds like machine gun fire, you're gonna struggle with the trash. I'd say about 1/3 to 1/2 of the places I normally hunt are this trashy.
  6. I know it has high mineralization because: 1. The clay layer will make my Garrett Carrot and F-Pulse false (unless I touch the tip of either on the soil when turning them on). 2. The clay layer, when wet, will ring up as a quarter or dime on the Vanquish. 3. My Vanquish is basically blind to anything located in the clay layer. 4. My Vanquish, when pressing the horseshoe button, will read in the negative numbers (more than -1 or -2) no matter what part of the ground I'm swinging my coil over. 5. My AT Max's GB reading is usually in the 80s and sometimes low 90s. If you ready my post history, it's pretty clear I have highly mineralized soil.
  7. Good point on the other SMFs machines. However, XP's offering is likely going to cost my soul to buy. N/M's offering will probably be affordable, but it'll probably has some growing pains I'd like to avoid. But even if my predictions are correct, there may be a slight influx of used Equinox 600s and/or 800s on the resale market, so perhaps it's worth waiting, whether to buy a used Equinox or new N/M... As for the Apex, I've heard it struggles in mineralized soil, so that's a no-go for me. It also has a built-in battery. But if I'm able to find a used one for very cheap, I'll consider it. The cheapest I ever saw for a used Apex was $250 and that was still too rich for my blood. Right now I'm leaning towards buying a used 5x8 AT coil and running my battery of tests on all my machines and their various coils (the Fisher F2 has a 4 inch sniper coil, for example). I can run these tests while I wait for an opportunity to test an Equinox on the nail board (perhaps someone from my local MD group will let me borrow a machine. But I don't know if it's worth getting COVID to do that...)
  8. I've never undersood the policy reasons for not letting treasure hunters get a percentage of the value of what they find. They only reason I can think of is that if something belongs to an owner, it always belongs to them unless some law or legal theory says otherwise. So I guess that b/c Spain owned the coins when they were lost, and no subsequent legal decision changed that, the newly found coins had to go back to Spain. But if that reasoning is correct, didn't the article say that the coins were mined and minted from South America? In that case, shouldn't the current countries where that silver and gold came from be the "rightful" owners of the treasure? But I suppose that's opening up a whole 'nuther can of worms, given the level of imperialism and colonialism that many, modern-day nations are arguably guilty of. Here's my proposal: If you're a treasure hunter looking for a specific treasure, you take reasonable measures to contact the actual or possible legal owner(s) of the treasure. You let them know what your'e trying to do. They can either tell you: a) "good luck" and go ahead and keep what you find; b) "good luck" and give us a certain percentage of the vaue of what you find. c) "I hope you have bad luck" but if you find anything, we get to keep anything you find. If the owner elects for option C, you either: continue your hunt for the treasure and do it in secret so in the chance that you find it, you get to keep all of it. Or, you tell the owner, "ok, fine, I'm going to go look for something else, then. You enjoy hunting for a treasure where you not only don't know where to look, but you forgot existed until I brought it up." As you can see, with option C, everyone loses. So it's in everyone's best interest to come to some sort of agreement on how to split the proceeds from any discoveries. Kind of like how the UK does it with certain treasures found on public and private land.
  9. If I understand what you're getting it, it seems like that until the signal processing software is improved. it doesn't really matter how fast or efficient the processors are.
  10. I'm trying to figure out if getting the 5x8 coil and keeping the AT Max is worth it compared to just getting the Equinox 600 and using its stock coil (at least in terms of hunting in trash). Short of putting in several dozen hours comparing each setup in real-world conditions, I have a feeling this nailboard test might be the next best thing. I'm prepared to do use Monte's Nail Board test. But it'll take some time away from hunting and I want to make sure I'm not missing some setting or factor for the test that will essentially nullify my results. Here's the deal: The AT Max's advatanges with ruggedness, use of AA batteries, S-shaft design and coil selection are the equivalent of the Equinox's advantages of more stable VDIs and more accurate VDIs at depth (to me). However, the AT Max's advantages aren't enough to overcome the potential Equinox advantage of being able to hunt through trashy conditions better than the AT Max, even if the latter has the 5x8 coil.
  11. I know that Monte's Nail Board helps create a standard for anyone and it's this standardization that I hope to take advantage of when comparing my AT Max to an Equinox (and comparing my other detectors). I know it's not perfect, but it's better than nothing, in my opinion. I'm also mulling over how to create a test garden in my back yard. I haven't done so yet b/c I can't properly create a good "soil profile" that has the less mineralized dark soil on top and the heavily mineralized red/brown/yellow-ish clay below that. But I'm beginning to think despite these flaws, having just 1 clad dime buried at 4/6/8 inches in my red clay would still be better than nothing when comparing different detectors. I've never hunted a ghost town, but many of the places I hunt have trash near the surface, too.
  12. In most places that I hunt, depth isn't an issue. There's just so much trash within the first 1-3 inches of the surface, losing out on depth is less of a concern for me. Now, in my own yard, where I know there may be some good, deep targets, yes, I want depth. But for most parks and private permissions, I'm realizing that getting depth doesn't mean much if there's so much trash, I sometimes skip ground balancing b/c I can't find any clear ground.
  13. If I do my proposed tests, I'll see if I can post my results here.
  14. Thank you for your insight. Here's a question for you: AT Max with 5x8 coil versus Equinox 600 with stock coil: which do you think finds coins better through typical park and yard trash?
  15. I got in a few hours of metal detecting yesteday with my AT Max, which included some time at a park and a few permissions (private homes). Nothing of note was found, although I continued to struggle with trying to find good targets in high-trash soil. Given how I'm using the Garrett AT Max, I know have two primary options for finding good targets (silver coins) in these types of conditions. First, get a smaller coil, like the 5x8. Second, start digging the trash targets to clear up the ground and reveal possible good targets that are being masked or otherwise "overshadowed" by all the bits of aluminum, nails and other garbage. The second approach is not a viable option for most places I hunt (parks and private permissions). Not only do I not have the time to implement that strategy, my body can't readily handle that much digging. Also, I'm pretty sure digging almost everything is bound to lead to the loss of any good graces I have with property owners and park maintenance crews. Ok, so that leaves the first option. But before I go that route, I have to concede the possibility of getting an Equinox. Based on my experience with my Vanquish, limited time on the Equinox 600 and experiences with my AT Max and Fisher F2, I'm confident that one of the advantages of getting an Equinox will be more stable VDIs and more accurate VDIs at depth. And right now, I think I can live with that. I understand that getting a solid signal (a good, repeatabe signal from both swings and in 2 directions) on a dime or quarter at 6+ inches in my mineralized soil isn't always realistic with the AT Max. But I know the AT Max is at least capable of getting a decent signal (a good, repeatable signal from at least 1 direction and in 1 swing). Put another way, I get how the AT Max may not get me the "dig me!" type of signal that an Equinox can, but I at least need it to get me the "take a closer look, please" signal. All of that to say that I'm thinking about how my AT Max's target separating ability and recovery speed limitations (using the stock coil) will compare to an Equinox 600 and a stock coil. I came to this realization when running the AT Max with only iron discrimination set at 35 resulted in information overload for me and notching out everything below 70 was likely leading me to completely miss "take a closer look, please" signals that might lead to silver coins, dimes or quarters. Therefore, I want to use Monte's Nail Board. I know it's not ideal, and I plan on using Steve's approach of using both the AT Max and Equinox 600 on real-world targets. But I think the Nail Board will offer quantitative data when comparing the AT Max and Equinox.I also plan on using it with my Fisher F2 and Vanquish 340 to help put things into perspective. So how do I go about doing this test? Here's my approach so far: Step 1: Create Monte's Nail Board and use it with a modern, clad dime and new nails. Step 2: For each of the 4 passes, I will give it a rating: Will Dig, Maybe Dig, Won't Dig. Step 3: I will set the sensitivities at either 50% or the highest possible given EMI Step 4: I will run each machine with zero discrimination and with enough notching so that it's only going to sound on dimes and quarters (and maybe copper pennies). Step 5: For the AT Max, I will also test it with iron discrimination set to 35. Step 6 (maybe): Run the test with the AT Max using both its stock and 5x8 coils. So here's my first real question: what changes or additions would you all make to my current approach? My second real question(s): what "base" setting should I use with the Equinox 600. I'm thinking Park 1 with recovery speed set at the highest setting (3?) and a small or moderate amount of iron bias. Should I also run some tests with the Equinox 600 in 4KHz mode? My third real question: would it be benefitical to modify Monte's Nail Board so that the nails are replaced by either clumps of aluminum or maybe pulltabs? A lot of my hunting is in parks and yards that are often littered with more aluminum trash than iron trash. Any insight is appreciated. Thanks!
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