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European Detectors Versus U.S. Style Detectors On Target Masking

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I missed your post above mine wile I was writing it Steve.

What detector are you getting better depth with?

I'm always looking for something better.

So far I have tried the CZ5 (along time ago), F75 LTD, Gold Bug Pro, X-terra 705 and the Racer.

All good machines but none of them have been able to identify deep silver like my CTX.

I would love to drop the 5 lb beast if I could find something better for deep silver.



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Remember that my main goal is the recovery of non-ferrous targets. I have my own tactics for trashy parks, and that is to just take them apart over a period of years. It is a secondary leisure activity in my off time from prospecting. And my comment was just something in passing about my own personal use and style of detecting - I AM NOT trying to talk anyone out of using the CTX for their uses in their soils.

The soil here in Reno is very high magnetite content. Very high. I am not talking about deep turf, I am talking about the sand and gravel base. Many of the park areas here have minimal turf depth. Kinda thread bare, if you know what I mean. Fe3O4 readings on machines like the F75, Gold Bug Pro, Racer, etc. all come up one segment short of maxed, gb numbers around 88 - 90.

The thing is I am not specifically coin detecting. I use small coils and recover all non-ferrous targets. I always hear people say that's impossible in their trashy parks, that my parks must not be as trashy, etc. No, it is because I eat elephants. And the way to eat elephants is a bite at a time. It is the same approach I use nugget hunting - methodical years long game plans. I can work parks considered worked out for years.

Right now my favorites are the F75 with 5" round DD, and the FORS and Racers with the little oblong 5" DD people are calling the OOR coil. The small coils allow for high gain levels in bad ground and actually punch deeper than the larger coils. Target id in bad ground is always dicey no matter the machine so I just recover all non-ferrous using two tones. The small DD coils automatically take care of most masking, my removal of all non-ferrous takes care of most of the rest. I even give the ATX a go now and then but there I hunt strictly by ear.

I just get pretty weird I guess. I don't much care what I find. Sometimes I just dig aluminum. I find all kinds of crazy little non-ferrous stuff. Lots of trash. But along the way I have no problem finding wheat backs and silver coins and a Buffalo nickel now and then, oddball jewelry finds, like ear rings, you name it. I have cans full of stuff, coins, trash, and jewelry I just toss all together and lots I have not bothered to sort out yet. I do not much care about the finds, I just love finding stuff and doing it well, and not leaving a mark.

I will sort some piles out and take some photos of the "good stuff" and the trash sometime soon. I am in winter house cleaning mode, one reason a few detectors and stuff will get sold, and past time to sort out the "not prospecting" piles of stuff sitting around. Should be an interesting post.

I am putting the Gold Racer into the park mix as weather allows. It has interesting operating characteristics due to its high operating frequency. The fact is I just like messing around with different metal detectors. Me getting one or getting rid of one is nothing new and people should not read much into it. I really am just a detector nerd.

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Ok I see where you are coming from.

Very interesting.. I need to take a day some time and just dig ALL

Non Ferrous and see what happens. I'm guilty of doing everything I can to

only pull coins but I'm sure that's why I don't come home with gold jewelry.

I'm addicted to silver coins for some reason.

I will pick a day and see how many pull tabs I can find.

I'm sure I will learn something from that.


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Pick the spot that gave you your best coins. Just like finding a nugget, I start with one decent coin find, and work outwards from there. But I never pressure any one area too much at one time, I spread the work around to give the area time to recover. No strip mining!

If you get a high success rate cherry picking silver no reason to do anything different.

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thanks Steve, again, I learned something new. I would like to hear more about how you approach  hunting, as far as long term plans.

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Nothing dramatic, just taking a longer term methodical perspective towards cleaning out small areas instead of wandering aimlessly around, going back to the same places over and over yet never feeling like I could say I covered it all. Now I look at a patch or park and have a loose plan for taking it apart in small mapped areas, one at a time, either removing all targets, or all non-ferrous targets, depending. The GPS integrated into the GPZ has upped my game considerably prospecting. For parks I just draw lines between landmarks like trees and corners and work it out piece by piece. But with parks I spread it around over time so as to not impact any one area too much at one time. I like to remain invisible.

I am not the only person that does this. Every once in awhile I run into a place in town where I can't find a bit of aluminum. Aluminum is kind of like an indicator mineral. If aluminum exists I can still make good finds. If there is no aluminum, somebody doing what I am doing beat me to it.

Nugget hunting I am hitting areas with sparse scattered gold. Most people would quit them for lack of finds. It is partly because I am new to the area and don't have much access to super great spots, so I am content to hunt areas everyone else has given up on. I am kind of like the cleanup crew coming in and gathering up the last bits. I make up for sparcity of finds by just putting in long hours.

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On 11/23/2015 at 5:51 PM, Steve Herschbach said:

Masking is not my problem with the CTX, it is lack of depth on a clear target in the open. Single frequency just packs more punch in my ground, and all the hours in the world won't change that.

To readers and especially Dilek, note Steve's post that I called attention to in color above because that is exactly what I have found, those are my personal preferences, as I have explained in a letter.

Like Steve, I have no problem if someone likes a CTX 3030 or an Ace 250, a Delta or Cortés because if THEY like it and feels it provides a performance level they like or that's in their budget, fine.

For my wants and needs, they fall way short so those won't be in my personal battery.  Yes, I have owned and/or used them just to get to learn and understand them, but there are certain levels of standards I have in the way of weight, balance, and especially in-the-field performance, that they just don't meet.

I use terms, like Steve, to lump people into one of two groups of metal detector users.  They either fit the group of 'Traditional Coin Hunters' which is more of what Steve leveled many models from USA manufacturers at.  The folks who like to use a lot of Discrimination, often employ Notch Disc., and they try to very selectively reject a lot of trash and limit their target recoveries to targets most-likely-to-be a coin.  Generally they ignore targets with an 'iffy' audio response or a visual TID or numeric VDI read-out that is not a 'lock-on' response.

The other group is simply the 'Avid Detectorist' which includes those who put in more time and effort to learn their detectors, to master the settings for improved in-the-field performance, and they are more attentive to the search coils selected for the task at hand and work in a more methodical manner to best cover a dedicated site.  Generally they use no more Discrimination that just barely enough to reject a common iron nail, and quite often (with the right detector design and performance settings) will hunt a site while accepting iron and rely on a quality-designed audio response to help identify problem ferrous trash. 

I have acquaintances who use V3i's and CTX-3030's and the like, but only a few of them I consider 'hunting buddies' and they also happen to have different detectors like I use when they work the very iron infested Relic Hunting sites I enjoy working.  I noted several years ago that some of the newer 'Gold Nugget' and 'Relic Hunting' models worked better for my personal needs and site choices than the 'popular' Coin Hunting detectors that are so fashionable.

I used the Gold Bug Pro and especially the G2, and even put in some time with the F19 but while they work better, in some ways, than general Coin Hunting models, there's only one USA manufacturer's modern detector I keep in my arsenal, and that's the Teknetics T2.  I favor it over the F75's I had, and with the round 5" DD coil it is a very impressive performer.  Surprising depth and ability to pull non-ferrous targets out of iron littered sites.

However, the Nokta FORS and Makro Racer performance with their 'OOR' coil still seems to handle the overly abundant iron littered Relic Hunting sites I work a bit better.  They are the closest in performance for that task to my favorite Tesoro models, and have set a standard that I don't see other detector makers (referring to US makers) coming close to anytime soon.

I'm happy there are detectors others enjoy, but more concerned about the models I have and use because, for me, I feel they are better for my needs.


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Great post Monte, and very much in line with my way of thinking. My focus of course is nugget detecting, but I do enjoy using detectors to do anything. That is good because no mater where I find myself there is always a reason to go metal detecting. I have followed many forums over the years, and it is just like reading movie reviews. Some reviewers hate movies I like, other reviewers and I think alike. So I pay attention to the reviewers that like the same movies I like. All it is of course is different people liking different things, and nothing wrong with that.

A long time ago I started paying attention to you in particular and have read a lot of your posts over the years. A lot of what I may spout now I learned from you. In a nutshell the minimal discrimination pull non-ferrous out of ferrous techniques, and of course the now famous Monte Nail Board Test https://www.ahrps.org/_tipsAndTechniques/Nail_Board_Performance_Test.pdf

Anyway, I have never met you but I do owe you, and so thank you very much for sharing your time and knowledge with all of us. You and I share another similar trait - our posts can get out of control and go on for some time. We just love talking detectors and once we get going sometimes it is hard to stop!

The T2 I feel is the bang for the buck unit but I favor the F75 because I can employ concentric coils on it plus a few niceties like saving settings when shut off, backlight and such. But the T2 has superior iron resolution almost identical to the Nokta/Makro machines. Unfortunately the T2 also shares the F75 tendency to identify certain non-ferrous targets as ferrous. As a result I use the F75 more for cherry picking and the Nokta/Makro for hardcore, don't mind digging a little more trash detecting. Oh well, nothing is perfect, every detector has flaws. But we keep getting closer to machines that are almost perfect and really it is all the extra competition putting the heat on that will get us there.

Thanks again for joining the forum!

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