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Monday, March 30, 2009

Fisher Labs Metal Detectors

Here is a write up on Fisher Labs Metal Detectors, who they are and what their products are. Well worth reading before you decide to buy a gold metal detector.

In any purchase of a gold metal detector it is always a good idea to know as much about the detector and its manufacturer before you buy.

Who are Fisher Labs
The website, Fisherlab.com was first registered in August 2004 but Fisher Labs are perhaps one of the oldest metal detector manufacturers in the business. Dr Fisher founded the Fisher Research Laboratory in his garage behind his home in Palo, Alto California in 1931making the Fisher Labs over 75 years old.

The "Metallascope" was the first metal detector produced in 1931 and consisted of two large, flat wooden boxes containing simple copper coils, five vacuum tubes, and a few assorted components. It became so popular that by 1936, sales had increased to the point where the garage was no longer large enough. Fisher Research Laboratory moved to a small building at 745 Emerson St. in Lalo Alto. Shortly thereafter, Dr. Fisher was granted a patent for his "Metallascope." The "Metallascope" was soon nicknamed the M-Scope, and as such, became an accepted standard for all types of electronic metal detection: geologists located ore, treasure hunters found treasure, utility companies located buried pipes, lumber mills located metal inclusions in sawn logs, and law enforcement agencies used it to locate abandoned or hidden weapons.

Fisher Labs continued to expand moving to a larger building in Palo Alto in 1939. Later, much attention was given to the war effort and over the subsequent years, Fisher designed and produced such devices as geiger counters, radio communication systems, voltage detectors and cable fault locators as well as improving the basic metal detectors.

Through the year Fisher Labs continued to expand moving in 1961 to a larger production factory in Belmont California and finally based in El Paso Texas.

In '74 Los Banos in California. In 2006 Fisher Labs was acquired by First Texas Products, a large company who also make the Bounty Hunter metal detectors .

Who are First Texas
First Texas Products, L.P. manufactures consumer electronic products in North America. It offers metal detectors, as well as accessories, such as carrying bags, headphones, and search coils for recreational treasure hunting. The company also offers consumer night vision products, including monoculars (telescopes) and binoculars. It sells its products through merchants, as well as mass market, and sporting goods and outdoor retail channels. First Texas Products, L.P. was founded in 1999 by Mr. Thomas C. Walsh, who is also the CEO and President, and is based in El Paso, Texas.

Fisher Labs Metal Detectors

Fisher Labs make a large range of metal detectors and a list is provided here:
New Products
X-series Multi-purpose
CZ-21
F2 Metal Detector
F5 Metal Detector
F70 Metal Detector
1236-x2
1270x
1280-X

Specialty - Underwater and gold nugget hunting
CZ-21
1280-X
Gold Bug-2
F75 Metal Detector
F5 Metal Detector
Also a range of accessories to go with the metal detectors.

Here are sample specifications of three of the Fisher Labs metal detectors.

Fisher F75 with Double-D Search Coil
This is a Fisher Labs 75 Year Special Edition metal detector and is the latest metal detector available from Fisher Labs.

HIGH PERFORMANCE The F75 is a multi-purpose high-performance computerized metal detector. It has the high sensitivity and ground balancing control needed for professional gold prospecting, the discrimination responsiveness needed for serious relic hunting under difficult conditions, and visual target ID considered essential in searching for coins. The F75operates at 13 kHz for good sensitivity to gold nuggets and jewelry as well as to coins. The F75 comes with an 11-inch elliptical Double D search coil for maximum detection depth in mineralized soils.

USER COMFORT The F75 is light and well balanced, so you can hold and swing it almost effortlessly. The arm rest position is adjustable to fit your arm. The grip is durable high-friction foam elastomer, comfortable in any kind of weather. The controls are conveniently located and easy to learn how to use. Locking collars on the tubes eliminate rattling.

EASY-TO-USE & INFORMATIVE INTERFACE The entire menu is always visible on the LCD display. The LCD display indicates the electrical signature (target I.D.) of the detected metal object. The display provides continuous information on battery condition and on ground mineralization, which affects detection depth. Help messages are automatically displayed on the bottom of the display when necessary.

LOW OPERATING COST The F75 is powered by four AA alkaline batteries, which will typically last for more than 30 hours of use before needing replacement.

PRODUCT FEATURES:
Light weight and well-balanced: best ergonomically engineered detector in the industry.
Intuitive menu-driven user interface
Large LCD screen
Visual indicators of important values such as:
Target Identification
Target Confidence
Target Depth (both running-depth and pinpoint-depth)
Ground Mineralization
Multiple Search Modes:
Discrimination
Static All-Metal
Motion All-Metal
Trigger-actuated FASTGRAB™ ground balancing with manual override
Waterproof 11-inch open-frame elliptical Double D searchcoil
Trigger-actuated target pinpointing with variable audio pitch
Fully Adjustable Arm Rest
Display backlight for night and low-light conditions
Notch and discrimination controls
Covers provided for both the control housing and battery box.

SPECIFICATIONS:
Mechanical: S-rod with electronics housing mounted on handgrip, 3-piece breakdown, batteries under elbow, 2-way armrest adjustment forward/backward & around forearm.
Searchcoil:11” (28 cm) open-frame elliptical double-D, waterproof.
Batteries: 4 AA, alkaline (included).
Weight:3.5 pounds (1.6 kg) with alkaline batteries installed.
Static Balance: Force in vertical plane normal to elbow 0.47 pounds (0.22 kg).Varies with adjustment and user’s stance and arm/hand physiology.
Dynamic Balance: Axial moment, 0.29 foot-pounds (0.39 newton-meters). Varies with adjustment and user’s stance and arm/hand physiology.
Sweep Effort: Lateral moment 5.2 foot-pounds (7.1 newton-meters).
Operating Principle: VLF induction balance
Operating Frequency: Nominal 13 kHz, quartz crystal timing reference
Basic Sensitivity:6 x 109 root Hertz (detectivity)
Lag Coefficient:78 milliseconds
Reactive Overload: Approximately 10,000 micro-cgs units (volume susceptibility) 40,000 micro-cgs units with sensitivity < style="font-weight: bold;">Fisher CZ-21 Metal Detector
This is an ideal unit for underwater detection. Gold is often found in sand under water so this would likely be an ideal unit for such work.

Features
Multi-Frequency Infinite Spectrum Technology:
The Fisher CZ series detectors send out a huge spectrum of signals that induce magnetic fields into metal objects at different frequencies. Multifrequency transmission with dual processing technology, engineered for deep treasure in the field!
Easy to use, High performance.
Excellent Depth & I.D. Accuracy.
Multi-use, Hunt Anywhere: On the beach or in mineralized soil, automatically.
Has a 2 Year Guarantee and 2 year limited warranty.
Dual Frequency: 5 & 15 kHz High Performance, Submersible, Target-ID Metal Detector for underwater, surf, beach, anywhere in all kinds of weather
New Improved pinpointer control
Improved water proofing to 250 feet

The CZ-21 is a go-anywhere, do anything, all-weather, target-ID machine that is leak proof to 250 feet. Its patented electronics make it deep-seeking while it ignores the destabilizing effects of salt water.

Target I.D: put on the headphones, swing the search coil, and listen to the 3-tone target I.D. A low tone means you are over iron, a mid tone means pull tab or gold ring and a high tone means a coin. And a distinctive bell tone lets you know when you are over big , shallow targets, no more digging beer cans! For precise pinpointing, use the Pinpoint button, which puts the detector in a no-motion-required , all metal mode. See for yourself: If you are an all-around treasure hunter who will not settle for second best, the CZ-21 is the detector for you.

Feature: Submersible to 250 feet, Three-tone, audio target I.D., Patented Dual-Frequency Fourier Domain Signal analysis, Silent-search , VLF, slow motion discrimination, Super-hot, wide-scan, all metal auto tune mode, Push-button, VCO no-motion pinpointing, Big-target alert, Increased depth in mineralized soil, Wet-sand operation, Faint target audio boost, Push-button ground balance, Separately sealed battery compartment with 4-9v batteries (gives a solid 45 hour use), Your choice of and 8 " or 10 " Spider open-center coil, Removable control housing mounts on your belt with belt clip (included), Easy to use: turn-on-and-go, pre-set control.

Summary of Field Test (Reprinted from Lost Treasure Magazine)
Incorporating all of the features of the field-proven CZ-5 and CZ-6 with the exception of the meter, the CZ-21 should prove to be an extremely popular detector with not only water and beach hunters, but coin and relic hunters who want a top-notch detector that is totally impervious to the elements. This is truly a detector that will perform equally as well in salt-water surf as it will in a fresh water lake, a school yard, or mineralized battlefield or campsite.

General Information:
Weight: 5lbs. 11oz. - Two year warranty - Comes with instruction book - Standard Battery Pack with 4-9 Volt Batteries - Submersible Headphones - Belt Clip to wear Controls on Waist or Hip

The Fisher CZ-21 Metal Detector with 8" Searchcoil has List Price of $1099.00

Fisher 1236-x2
The Fisher 1236-x2 is a silent, discriminating, body-mount 1236-x2 with a variable frequency.

With this unit, Fisher has provided audio threshold at the maximum setting so the faintest target signal can be heard. You can vary the transmit frequency of the 1236-x2 from 5.5KHz to 5.9KHz to eliminate electrical interference from nearby metal detectors. Complete with a 3-piece breakdown handle, the 1236-x2 also offers a preset iron discrimination setting, volume control with on/off switch and frequency control.

A useful feature is the variable frequency control that tunes out interference from nearby detectors operating at the same frequency, so is ideal for parties all searching for gold or treasure at the same time.

FEATURES: Silencer Mode-knocks out chatter for quiet operation - Increased sensitivity - Pre-set iron discrimination mode - Sensitivity/Battery test control - Automatic, turn on and go operation - VLF-slow motion discrimination - VCO Pinpoint Audio - Convertible to hip mount - High-Tech Digital and Analog circuitry - Frequency shift control - Patented, double-derivative electronics - Optional, 3 3/4 and 5 inch coils and 10 1/2 inch spider coil - Lightweight with cushioned arm rest and foam grip - Drop in batteries (2-9v batteries), long battery life - Full range discrimination and sensitivity controls - Double-locking ABS fibreglass stem - Three piece breakdown handle - Fisher's 5 Year Limited Warranty

1236-x2 is a good all round basic machine, ideal for a beginner. The suggested retail price is $399.95 plus $226.55 in Free and Optional Detector Accessories Total Value $621.55

Last Word on Fisher Labs Metal Detectors
Fisher Labs is one of the oldest metal detector companies and in the 1930s has some of the original patents on these machines.

Fisher Labs also manufacture Industrial locating equipment as well as walk through metal detectors and hand held weapons detectors.

They are an old established firm and one can be assured that Fisher Labs Metal Detectors will do all they say they do.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Garrett Metal Detectors

Here is a write up on Garrett Metal Detectors, who they are and what their products are. Well worth reading before you decide to buy a Garret gold metal detector.

In any purchase of a gold metal detector it is always a good idea to know as much about the metal detector and its manufacturer before you buy.

Who are Garrett Metal Detectors
Garrett Metal Detectors was first established in April 1964 and the website was launched in 1998 as garrett.com.

Garrett Metal Detectors was started up by Charles Garrett, current President and Chief Executive Officer, and his wife, Eleanor Garrett who is the Executive Vice President. Since they started in the garage of their home over 40 years ago Garrett Metal Detectors has expanded to be one of the prominent metal detector manufacturers in the home, security and countermine areas.

In 1968, understanding the tremendous value of a distributor network, Garrett begins placing ads to set up dealerships across the country and quickly established distributors around the country.

In the same year, Garrett becomes the first manufacturer to eliminate oscillator drift. He also designs and patents his revolutionary, independently-operated search coils which greatly improve treasure hunting efficiency and was the first to overcome searchcoil drift by inventing (and patenting) a special coaxial searchcoil winding technique.

These discoveries launch Garrett to the forefront of the industry. Many of his competitors close their doors or later acquiesce that the Zero Drift Revolution, as it is now called, changed the metal detection industry forever.

In 1971 Garrett Metal Detectors moves into a new 15,000 square foot facility and begins increasing production of its more sophisticated products and produced the first low cost metal detector - The Mini Hunter. This was followed up in 1973 with the first TR (Transmitter-Receiver) metal detector.

Later, in 1974 Garrett begins worldwide distribution of the, now famous, Gravity Trap Gold Pan, designed and patented by Roy Lagal of Lewiston, Idaho. This gold pan continues to be the world’s most popular gold pan. Garrett then introduced the original GroundHog VLF/TR prospecting and general purpose detector.

In 1978 Garrett began to open international dealerships and now has dealerships around the world including Australia and the UK.

By the mid 1980s Garrett Metal Detectors had become one of the largest metal detector manufacturers with over 1,800 distributors worldwide. Garrett Also introduced the Sea Hunter, an underwater pulse induction metal detector.

Garrett has also supplied security metal detectors for various Olympic games including Korea, Sydney Australia and Salt Lake city and has been named the official security metal detector supplier for the 2010 Winter Olympic Games in Vancouver, Canada.

Garrett Metal Detectors ISO 9001:2000 Certified & Warranty

Garrett Metal Detectors has achieved certification as an ISO 9001:2000 company.

In order to pass the certification audit, every member of Garrett’s management, manufacturing and office staff worked to raise the quality level to ISO standard.

Acknowledged worldwide for the highest standard in quality, ISO 9001 Certification is a guarantee to anyone, anywhere in the world that Garrett metal detectors come from a quality managed organization. This certification is an indication that Garrett has met stringent guidelines with regard to product design processes, manufacturing procedures, distribution systems and customer service methods for all products and services provided and that every detector sold from one of Garrett’s authorized dealers, located in 120 countries across the globe, arrived from the Garland factory in perfect condition.

Garrett Electronics, Inc. ("Garrett") also warrants that each piece of detection equipment manufactured by Garrett is protected by a limited parts and labor warranty for a period of 24 months from the date of purchase, with the following exception: the Sea Hunter Mk II, which is covered for a period of 12 months from the date of purchase.

During this 24-month period Garrett state they will inspect and evaluate all equipment returned to its authorized repair station or factory to determine if the equipment meets Garrett's performance specifications. Garrett will repair or replace at no charge to the owner all parts determined faulty. This Warranty does not cover batteries nor any and all failures caused by abuse, tampering, theft, failure due to the weather, battery acid or other contaminants and equipment repairs made by an unauthorized party.

Garrett Metal Detectors

Garrett have a number of metal detectors. Here is a list of them.
ACE Series Detectors
ACE 150
ACE 250
Graphic Target Imaging Detectors
GTI 2500
GTI 1500
Specialty Detectors
Sea Hunter Mark II
Infinium LS
Scorpion Gold Stinger
Mid-Range Detectors
GTAx 550
GTP 1350
Master Hunter CX Plus
Prices range from as low as 150 dollars up to well over a thousand. You can, with a bit of searching buy them for under the listed retail price. Here is a write up of three selected metal detectors from the Garrett range of metal detectors.

Garrett GTI 2500 Pro with Treasure Hound Eagle Eye Metal Detector
This is one of the latest models with all the bells and whistles.
Features:
Enhanced Power Master Circuitry
LCD Graphic Target Imaging/Treasure Vision - Size and Depth Matrix
LCD Graphic Target Analyzer, 24 Notch Discrimination
Sharp Audio Target Response
Target Size Data, Ramrod Stem Design with Armrest
Hip mounting of Battery Pack
Waterproof Elastomeric Membrane Touch pads
Imaging Search coil Series
Interchangeable Search coils
Optional Pinpointing - Non-Motion
True Coin Depth Reading

Menu Selections:
6 Operating Modes
Non-Motion/All Metal
Coin, Jewelry
Relics, Zero
Custom
Sensitivity Adjustment
Threshold Adjustment
Tone Adjustment
Volume Adjustment
Manual Ground Balance
8 Detection Frequencies
Surface Elimination, and Search Image

Search Aids:
One Touch Operation
Last Target Recall
Last Mode Recall
Audio Mode Selection, and
Salt Elimination

Menu:
Search
Image
Recall
Fiber Optic Back Light
Auto Ground Balance
Fast Track Ground Balance
Auto Threshold Retuning and Manual Threshold Adjustment Factory Reset LCD Battery Conditioner Indicator - 5 Levels
The unit uses 8 AA Batteries and has an operating weightof 4 lb., 10 oz. It comes with a 2 Year Warranty and Instructional Video.

Factory Accessories Include: 12.5 Inch GTI Imaging Coil, Garrett Master Sound™ Headphones, GTI 2500 Rain and Dust Cover, Garrett Guide: Lost Treasure, Garrett Supreme Carrying Case. Total Value $394.80

Retail price $1,729.75 plus 394.80 equals 2124.55 USD.

Garrett ACE 250 Graphic Target ID
A less expensive metal detector but still very comprehensive in its Features:
Graphic Target ID Cursor (12 Segments)
Discrimination: Accept/Reject Notch
Electronic Pinpoint
Sensitivity, Depth Adjustment (8 Settings)
Coin Depth Indicator
Headphone Jack
Interchangeable Ace Series Search coils
Large LCD Display
Microprocessor Controlled
Push Button Controls
Clear Speaker Tone
Tone ID (3 Levels)
Touch-n-Go Operation

Search Modes:
All Metal
Jewelry
Custom
Relics
Coins

Specification:
Length: 42" to 51" Adjustable
Weight: 2.7 lbs (1.2 kgs)
Frequency: 6.5 kHz
4-AA battery operation (batteries are included)
2 Year Warranty
Garrett ACE 250 Deluxe Sports Package Metal Detector with 6.5 x 9" PROformance Coil and 9x12" Rhino PROformance Coil list Price is $349.95 Plus $248.65 in Free Detector Accessories. Total Value $598.60

Infinium LS
The Infinium LS (Land & Sea) is a new direction for Garrett and treasure hunters all over the world. it was designed to find nuggets, coins, caches, and relics virtually anywhere in the world including depths of up to 200 feet under water.

The Infinium LS has variable speed ground tracking, multi-channel pulse induction technology, advanced discrimination, Tone ID for enhanced target information, a fully submersible, all-environment design and interference elimination without reduced sensitivity.
Features:
96 Operating Frequencies.
Convergence of technologies including Garrett's exclusive new Advanced Pulse Induction (API).
Easy operation with just three controls.
Discrimination Dial provides all-metal detecting or varying degrees of discrimination.
Tone ID helps identify targets via distinct audio tones.
Enhanced discrimination to eliminate unwanted targets.
Reverse discrimination capability assists in identifying most iron.
Adjustable operating frequency minimizes electrical interference
Automatic Ground Track with lock, slow, and fast settings to master changing soil conditions.
Audio Threshold adjustment ensures clear interpretation of all target signals.
Rugged go-anywhere design and stable, quiet performance.
Lightweight, power-saving design uses eight AA batteries.
Choice of four different control housing configurations.
Complete line of new Infinium LS search coils: 10" x 14" Power DD, 10" x 14" Mono; 8" Mono.

SPECIFICATIONS
Circuit type Advanced Pulse Induction technology, automatic cancellation of salt/ground mineralization
Frequency 730 pulses per second.
Submersion depth Up to 200 feet (65 meters) or seven atmospheres.
Buoyancy Near neutral.
Batteries Eight AA
Battery life Approximately 10-15 hours.
Control housing weight 31 oz.
Headphones 16 oz. Non-Submersible
The Infinium LS Multiple Frequency Metal Detector with 10" x 14" "DD" Searchcoil retails at $1,250.00 - Plus $488.54 in Free and optional metal detector accessories.

Last Word on Garrett Metal Detectors
Garrett are also a manufacturer of security devices such as you see at airports and secure building including the type you walk through and hand held devices which those security guys run down your clothing. They also manufacture A detector called the RECON_PRO® AML 100 which is designed to operate under all conditions for the search and location of landmines. This detector is set up for immediate deployment and no assembly is required for speed and instant use requirements.

Garrett have established themselves as one of the leading metal detector manufacturers. An ISO ranking and a 12 to 24 month warranty will ensure that buying a Garrett Metal Detector will provide many happy hours of gold and silver hunting.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

White's Electronics Metal Detectors

Here is a write up about White's Electronics Metal Detectors, who they are and what their products are. Well worth reading before you decide to buy a gold metal detector.

In any purchase of a gold metal detector it is always a good idea to know as much about the detector and its manufacturer before you buy.

Who are Whites Electronics
White’s Electronics are predominantly a family business and started back in the 1950s during the uranium craze manufacturing Geiger Counters. Olive and Ken White started the business when the only Geiger Counters available used headphones and Mr. White quickly discovered that headphones created a problem in rattlesnake country. So he invented a better product but was told by the leading Geiger counter manufacturers that his design was "impossible".

So Ken White decided to build his own and that started a growing business that now spans the globe. White's Electronics is now an international metal detector manufacturer and is now lead and managed by Ken and Mary White, using the same successful philosophy used by Ken's father 50 years before.

Whites Electronics now holds numerous patents for its metal detectors, and as the technology of the electronics industry advances, Whites Electronics continue to update and manufacture more advanced models.

The Whites Electronics website, whiteselectronics.com has been online since 1997. Whites Electronics metal detectors are available, in alphabetical order, in Africa Australia, Canada, Eastern Europe, Middle East The USA, United Kingdom, and Russia through their outlets available on site. They also have a factory in the UK based in Inverness, Scotland.

Whites Electronics have a very comprehensive website with details about all of the metal detectors they manufacture including manuals, other peoples comments and results and much more.

They have evidently gone out of their way to provide as much information about their metal detectors as possible.

What do Whites Electronics Manufacture
Whites Electronics principally manufacture metal detectors and have plants on both sides of the Atlantic. The sales area of the Inverness, Scotland factory services the whole world with the exception of the two Americas, North and South, as well as Australia and New Zealand. Whites Electronics have manufacturing, assembly and service repair facilities in Inverness to cover the Hobby (Treasure), Underwater, Industrial, Security and Military markets also.

Whites Electronics list various stories on their site of people who have found some valuable items, including gold jewelery using various white’s Metal Detectors. They make interesting reading and are a sample of what can be found with some good research and patience scanning with a metal detector.

How to Buy Whites Metal Detectors
It is very easy to buy Whites Electronic Metal Detectors. You can look over the range of metal detectors they have on site. Some are listed below with some details about them, and select the one that suits your needs.

You can order through one of the outlets listed on the site or, alternatively buy online (US and Canada only). You can order by fax, email or phone also. Whites Electronics take all the major credit cards

You can obtain a free catalog of White Metal Detectors and accessories online in both English and En Espanol

Whites Metal Detectors
Here is a list of the various metal detectors Whites Electronics manufacture:
DFX 300
MXT 300
DFX
XLT
MXT
Matrix M6
GMT
Prizm 6T
Prizm V
Prizm IV
Prizm III
BeachHunter 300
Surf PI Dual Field
Specialty Detectors
Bullseye II Pinpointer
Autoscan Security
Matrix 100
PRL-1 Metal Detector
TM 808 Metal Detector
ULA-3/Sierra Madre
Some details of the most popular detectors are shown here:

DFX™ E-Series Metal Detector
The top of the range DFX™ E-Series Metal Detector is the most complex and up to date in the Whites range.. The finest all-around metal detector.

The DFX™ has the ability to find treasure older, deeper and smaller items that many other metal detectors simply pass over.

The listed Price is USD $1099.95 although with a bit of searching around it could be possible to obtain one for less.

According to whites here are the main features of the DFX™

Multiple Frequency Operation. Hunt in 3 kHz, 15 kHz, or use both frequencies simultaneously. Best Data displays the most reliable target info, or use Correlate to reject iron and other questionable targets.

EEPROM hunting programs. Use these Pro-designed programs or erase them and create, name and store your own custom metal detector programs.

High-definition, extended temperature, back-lit display. Easier to see, with double clock speed for very fast target response.

DSF® Signal Filtration. Change your ground filtering at will, from 2 filters to 6. Use 2 for quick response in high trash areas or 3, 4, 5, up to 6 for superior depth in mineralized grounds.

Sweep Speed Adjust. Use higher settings to move quickly through an area with few targets, and lower settings when you want to move more slowly through areas where you need to get in between trash.

Hot Rock Rejection. A complete range from total acceptance to total rejection.

Big, bold VDI numbers read out alongside target icons, and White's exclusive Signagraph®. Then just flip the trigger, activate the depth screen and see how deep to dig.

Additional features include:

Turn-on-and-Go! Programs- ready to hunt right out of the box. Completely automatic, professionally engineered metal detector programs for high performance.

Basic Adjustments and 34 Pro Options. Adjust virtually every aspect of your metal detector hunting. Popular adjustments include Tone I.D., Sweep Speed, Silent Search, Fade Rate, Recovery Speed, Block Edit, Auto Trac® Speed and more.

Complete visual display information. Target icons, VDI numbers and White's exclusive SignaGraph® bar graph target signature. 3 independent and precise ways to define a target. Flip the trigger and activate the depth screen. Display size is 2 7/8" x 1 5/8"

Automatic Ground Balance with AutoTrac®. Tracks and adjusts to changing grounds as you hunt.

Powerful, waterproof 9" search coil for maximum depth and versatility.

Slide-in NiCad Battery System. Up to 15 hrs. of power-packed metal detector hunting on a single charge. Backup penlight pack also included.

Included is a Instruction DVD and the unit comes with a two year warranty covering all metal detector parts and labor for two years from the original purchase date.

MXT™ 300 E-Series Metal Detector
The MXT™ 300 E-Series Metal Detector promises more depth with the performance boost of a 12" powerhouse coil.

NEW! MXT™ 300 The versatility of 3 completely separate hunting programs, with deep-detection of White's 12" spider coil.

Listed price is USD $899.95

Features include:

Updated, matte black finish.

3 complete separate programs with separate target responses, display information, and audio frequencies.

Coin/Jewelry Mode: Coins and rings in - pull tabs out! The display offers VDI -95 to +94, Target Blocks coin/jewelry/trash target labels, automatic battery check, low battery alert, overload alert, and depth reading. Also available is knob adjust discrimination, gain threshold, plus an alternate trigger mode "pull tab notched out"...Impressive Depth!

Relic Mode: Specifically ID's buttons, buckles and bullets! The display offers VDI -95 to +94, target blocks, target labels, automatic battery check, low battery alert, overload alert and depth reading. Also available knob adjust discrimination, gain and dual threshold. Three alternate trigger modes allows for your personal preferences. Unique audio response similar to mixed-mode audio, a favorite of professional relic hunters.

Prospecting Mode: Patterned after White's Goldmaster metal detector! Plus the display offers VDI -95 to +94, % probability, ground phase, automatic battery check, low battery alert, and overload alert. When using the Prospecting Mode the knob adjust discrimination becomes an adjustment for SAT speed. A real gold machine metal detector designed to Jimmy "Sierra" Normandi's specifications.

Each operating mode contains optional search and discriminate methods, i.e., Disc Notch, Mixed Mode Audio, VCO and much more!

Automatic Ground Balance - simple, lightening fast, and accurate. From mountain minerals to salt water.

3 easy-adjust controls-
GAIN maximizes sensitivity and depth
THRESHOLD allows you to hunt with a slight hum or hear only the sound of detected targets.
DUAL control fine tunes discrimination in the Coin & Jewelry and Relic programs. Adjust the full range of discrimination- ignore trash and hear all targets. In the Prospecting program, DUAL adjusts the S.A.T. speed- an essential for serious prospecting detectors.
Operating frequency- 14 kHz.

Drop-in Battery Pack. 40-hour operation from 8 "AA" batteries. (NiCad Rechargeable system available.)

Optional Eclipse accessory search coils available.

The display you can depend on! The LCD Display screen on the MXT™ metal detector displays information according to which mode you select. The top screens, here, show the coin/jewelry mode and the relic mode. Each have a VDI number, a target identification and a signal strength vertical bar. The third screen is in the gold mode. It shows the VDI number, the ground balance number and the iron probability percentage. Squeeze the "trigger" and the bottom screen shows target depth and pinpointing of the target under the loop.

There is an instruction DVD included and the White's Electronics manufacturers warranty covers all metal detector parts and labor for two years from the original purchase date.

XLT® E-Series Metal Detector
The XLT® E-Series Metal Detector is a treasure hunting metal detector with turn-on-and-go simplicity.

With 5 programs to choose from, you have almost every kind of metal detector hunting covered. It's easy to enhance a program, too, for your particular metal detector hunting with one of 10 Basic Adjustments or even a Professional Option. Completely automatic or totally adjustable.

List price is USD $899.95

The features for the XLT® E-Series Metal Detector include:

5 Turn-on-and-Go! Programs 10 Basic Adjustments, and 29 Pro Options. Adjust virtually every hunting aspect of your metal detector. Popular adjustments include Tone I.D., Sweep Speed, Silent Search, Fade Rate, Recovery Speed, Block Edit ... and more.

Automatic Ground Balance with AutoTrac®.

White's exclusive SignaGraph®. What's in the ground is on the screen.

High definition, megapixel luminescent display for sharp target and depth readouts - back-lit display is adjustable for low light.

Slide-in NiCad Battery System. Up to 15 hrs. of power-packed metal detector hunting on a single charge. Backup penlight pack also included.

Powerful, waterproof 9 1/2" metal detector search coil for maximum depth and versatility.

An instructional DVD included as with all whites Metal Detectors as well as the usual White's Electronics manufacturers warranty covers all metal detector parts and labor for two years from the original purchase date.

BeachHunter® 300 Metal Detector
The BeachHunter® 300 Metal Detector is ideal for waterproof beach hunting!

Three high intensity color coded LED's pair up with three distinctive audio tones to help you easily ID your detected target - Iron, Jewelry, or Coins. Hear it and see it!

The BeachHunter 300 Section is priced at USD $999.95

Features include:

300mm 12-inch spider search coil with near-neutral buoyancy.

A Dual Frequency metal detector providing optimum detection on the sand and in the water.

Two Search Modes: Toggle between All-Metal and Motion Discrimination for easy pinpointing and versatility.

3 Controls - Threshold, Sensitivity, and Ground. Total metal detector versatility is all here!

Salt and Freshwater metal detector versatility for all kinds of beach hunting.

Drop-in "AA" battery system and battery test. 20 hrs. of hunting.

Detachable control box with hip or chest-mount pouch included.

Waterproof to 25 feet.

Headphones are hardwired into the unit, not removable.

A White's Electronics manufacturers warranty covers all metal detector parts and labor for two years from the original purchase date.

What People Say About Whites
"Took a dealer of another detector brand out today, Whites GMT, 3 nuggets--other detector, 0 nuggets. When will they ever learn to leave Ole Grubstake alone? Large nugget is 13.6 grams The three total 15.6 grams and there was a little flake and flour with it. Found in a crack the GMT found for me. Going back out tomorrow to look at moving some large boulders and check under them."

"1/4 ounce per day. Yesterdays finds with the GMT. Notice the small stuff that it picks up."

"I have used many brands and models of detectors at Ganes Creek, AK and the White's MXT is certainly one of my most favorite detectors. After all, when you find Gold Nuggets like these, what more can you say."

"This past week I had time just after work to make a short hunt in farm field. We have recovered several civil war bullets from this area, and thought I might be able to get a few before I had to head home. Little did I know I would find one of the crown jewels of the metal detecting world. An 1851 gold dollar. Mint mark New Orleans. My MXT had no problems picking this little lady right out of the field. I road on cloud 9 the whole way home and actually left the field early. Thanks."

"My husband and I have two DFX machines that we love! Having celebrated my 80th birthday this month (October), we headed to the beach for a couple of weeks of fishing and treasure hunting. The fishing was productive for my husband, and the treasure hunting with my DFX was also productive. I found 7 rings in one day! And a total of 11 rings in 6 days, plus 6 silver coins, 2 Buffalo nickels, 4 religious medals, and enough change to pay for about 9 gallons of gas! I am on my way back to the beach!"

"I started off with a Prizm II and within 2 days I struck gold-a golden wedding ring!
I have also found many coins on our acres, including silver coins. I was able to sell a couple of coins I found and purchase a Prizm III. What a magnificent piece of equipment, I struck gold again! It is a very rare gold coin, a Golden Ducaat dated 1719, from Germany."

"This summer my MXT was like a gold magnet! I found all of these rings and two bracelets at the same school over the summer. They are 10kt gold and 2 rings are 14kt gold. I called the school and told them if someone reported losing a wedding ring to call and describe it to me, and they could have it back. So far, I haven't received any calls."

"I have a DFX and it has been doing its job. There are 2 nice watches (1 is a Fossil.) Also I have found four gold rings, 2 are wedding bands, 1 opal, and 1 ruby color heart. A nice gold earring with diamond chips and some sterling silver items."

"I couldn't wait to get down there and try my new Prizm. My second day out, I found my best find ever! A 1946 Walking Liberty Half Dollar in very good condition! I couldn't believe my eyes! I love the White's detectors and recommend the Prizm to anyone who just needs something lighter!"

Last Word on Whites Metal Detectors

Whites gold Metal Detectors are professionally made equipment designed to work in most conditions including in extreme temperatures and some even under water. Whites Electronics manufacture some of the best metal detectors, particularly for gold detection word wide. Whites Electronics Metal Detectors are all guaranteed of course and carry a 2 year warranty.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Minelab Metal Detectors

Here is a write up about Minelab Metal Detectors, who they are and what their products are. Well worth reading before you decide to buy a gold metal detector.

In any purchase of a gold metal detector it is always a good idea to know as much about the detector and its manufacturer before you buy.

Who are Minelab
Minelab Electronics Pty Ltd., located in Adelaide, South Australia is the Head Office of the Minelab Group. This location consists of an office complex where manufacturing, equipment assembly, marketing and customer service occurs. Additionally, the Minelab Group's vital and continuous Research and Development is conducted at Minelab's Head Office in Adelaide.

Minelab is also in the USA. Minelab USA Inc. is located in Nevada and provides marketing, customer service and distribution.

Today Minelab has manufacturing, distribution and customer service operations in Australia, Europe and the United States, and is an ISO 9001 Quality Endorsed Company. ISO 9001 is a worldwide quality standard certification that ensures the highest level of product quality for our customers.

From its origins in 1985, in the suburbs of Adelaide, South Australia, Minelab has become one of the most well known metal detector manufacturers specialising in metal sensing technology.

Codan Limited
Minelab was recently acquired by Codan Limited, Another Australian Company, headed up by Mike Heard, Managing Director.

Codan designs and manufactures a diversified product range for the international high frequency radio, satellite and digital microwave radio communications markets. They also also supply TV broadcasting products to global markets and printed circuit boards for customers in Australia and New Zealand. Codan is pleased to add metal detection equipment and advanced electronics manufacturing to its product group through the recent acquisition of Minelab Electronics Pty Ltd.

Founded in 1959, Codan has grown to become a globally active company that employs around 500 staff worldwide. With exports representing approximately 90% of revenues, our products are sold into more than 150 countries.

What do Minelab Manufacture
Minelab produces world-leading metal detecting products designed to work in some of the most challenging conditions worldwide. These include, security metal detectors, hand held metal detectors, beach metal detector, and mine detectors.

Over twenty years, Minelab has incorporated in its detectors AGT (Automatic Ground Tracking), MPS (Multi-Period Sensing), DVT (Dual Voltage Technology), SETA (Smart Electronic Timing Alignment), and Minelab's multi-frequency technologies, FBS (Full Band Spectrum) and BBS (Broad Band Spectrum).

Minelab has also now incorporated a USB interface into its latest product offering, allowing users to download, upload and share; Settings, User Modes and Discrimination Patterns, using their own personal computers.

Minelab Metal Detectors
Here is a selection of 5 of Minelab’s most popular metal detectors with some information about each. This is by no means a complete list of all the gold metal detectors MineLab manufacture. That list would be far too extensive for this review. All Minelab detectors feature a 2 year factory warranty. Also a 2 year ESP extended warranty.

Minelab E-TRAC Metal Detector

The Minelab E-TRAC Metal Detector with 11” DD Search Coil is the world’s first detector with PC Interface

The Minelab E-TRAC features a USB port to connect your metal detector to your personal computer. This allows you to save user modes, patterns, your favorite settings, and even the settings of other detectorists! The "Sensitivity" gauge has been improved and features suggested levels to give you more time hunting and less time programming.

Even if you do not have a computer, the Minelab E-TRAC has upgrades which you can use with or without a computer to hook it up to.

Factory Accessories include:
Koss Headphones
Detector Stand
Installed 12V STD. Battery Holder
AC/DC Wall Charger
Protecta Coil Cover
USB 2.0 Cable
E-TRAC Xchange Software
1600 mAh - 9.6V Rechargeable Battery Pack
SPECIFICATIONS
Transmission Technology: Full Band Spectrum (FBS) Technology
Number of Frequencies: 28 Simultaneous Frequencies ranging from 1.5kHz - 100 kHz
Microprocessor: 32bit, 48MHz microprocessor - fast and powerful
Connectivity: USB connector for communication with personal computer
Software: Intuitive user interface; Fast target processing multi-language functionality
Ground Balance Modes: Auto Ground Compensation - Advanced Digital Filtering
Target Identification: Conductivity range: 1-50 Ferrous content range: 1-35
Audio Tone Identification: 1, 2, 4 and Multi-tone; customizable conductivity / ferrous response
Audio Tone Settings: 4 Settings: Normal, Long, Smooth, Pitch Hold
Tone ID Variability: 30 adjustable steps for better target identification
Discrimination: 2 Dimensional Smartfind™ Discrimination
QuickMask™ New QuickMask™ for easy full ferrous discrimination capability, provides the ability to quickly and easily adjust the level of ferrous and conductive discrimination.
Depth Gauge: New larger gauge, updates in pinpoint mode; can be turned off by user
Sensitivity Adjustment: Fully Automatic; adjustable from aggressive to conservative, Manual Settings 1-30
Sensitivity Gauge: Auto Level, Manual Level and Suggested Level
Noise Cancel: Automatic and Manual
Pinpoint: Modulated audio for improved target size and depth identification with new crosshair visual indication
Low Battery: Audio Alarm
Batteries: 1600 mAh NiMH or Alkaline batteries
Coil: Ultra Lightweight 11" Double D (DD) waterproof coil
Visual Display: Large 3/4" grayscale LCD panel with contrast adjustment and backlight
Headphone Input: 1/4" Stereo Jack
Threshold: Finer adjust level 1-50; improved stability in high-trash areas
Recovery Speed: Selectable (Fast & Deep)
Ground Setting: Two settings, "Neutral" for most ground conditions, and "Difficult" for more mineralized soils.
Trash Density: Low or high (Selectable based on site conditions).
Weight: 4.8 lbs with battery installed
Patents US4890064; US5537041; US5506506

The retail price is: $1,895.00 plus $557.59 in Free and optional accessories
However, by searching around it is possible to get this detector for less than 1500 USD.

This is an excellent detector for the experienced user as well as the novice. Despite the apparent complexity of the machine it comes with full instructions and is not hard to learn to use.

Minelab Explorer SE Pro Metal Detector
The Minelab Explorer SE Pro Metal Detector comes with an 11” DD Search coil & FREE Treasure Hunting Accessories and the “Iron Mask Feature”.

The Iron Mask Feature is exclusive to Minelab metal detectors and eliminates signals from iron trash. Only signals from good targets are strong and clear, at much lower depths. e.g. A coin buried near a nail may be passed over by many detectors but not the Minelab Explorer SE Pro. Because of its 28 frequencies, the Explorer will distinguish between nonferrous, good targets and ferrous, iron trash. In the discrimination mode the iron mask feature allows you to locate good targets among ferrous junk.

Factory Included Accessories
Koss Headphones
AC/DC Wall Charger
12 Alkaline Battery Pack
9.6V Rechargeable Battery Pack
Detector Stand
Coil Cover
Instruction Manual
SPECIFICATIONS
Transmission Technology: Full Band Spectrum (FBS) 28 Simultaneous Frequencies ranging from 1.5kHz - 100 kHz
Number of Frequencies: 28 Simultaneous Frequencies
Microprocessor: New technology processor - faster and more powerful
Software: 3rd Generation Software - improved user interface
Ground Balance Modes: Auto Ground Compensation - Advanced Digital Filtering
Target Identification: 2 Dimensional SmartfindT Size / Conductivity and Ferrous characteristics
Audio Tone Identification: Constant to Multi-tone; customizable Conductivity / Ferrous
Audio Tone Settings: 3 Settings: Long, Smooth, Pitch Hold
Discrimination: 2 Dimensional SmartfindT Discrimination
Iron Mask: Simplified Iron Mask coordinates 0-31 with full ferrous discrimination capability
Depth Indicator : Yes; Now also updates in pinpoint mode
Sensitivity Adjustment: 2 Settings: Semi-Automatic & Manual 1-32
Noise Cancel: Automatic & Manual
Pinpoint: Non-motion modulated audio for improved target size and depth identification
Low Battery Audio Alarm: Yes
Batteries : 1600 mAh NiMH or Alkaline batteries
Coil: Lightweight 10.5" Double D (DD) waterproof coil
Visual Display: 64x128 pixel LCD panel with improved graphics
Headphone Input: 0.25 inch Stereo Jack
Threshold: Finer adjust level; improved stability in high-trash
Recovery Speed: Selectable (Fast & Deep)
Patents : US 4890064; US 5537041; US 5506506

Optional Accessories
Coils: 8" FBS Coil with Lower Shaft
Battery: 1800mA/H NiMH Battery Pack; 'AA' Housing Battery Pack
Charger: 12V Car Charger

Retail price $1,495.00 Plus $662.53 in Free and optional accessories Total value = $2,157.53 But it is possible to acquire this detector for under $1300 USD.

Minelab Safari Metal Detector
The Minelab Safari metal Detector with 11” DD Search Coil is a new detector for 2009 for Minelab.

This is a cheaper detector than the previous two but is still a Full Band Spectrum (FBS) fueled Safari! Featuring four pre-programmed detection modes and four programmable user modes, the Safari is easy-to-use for the new gold prospector as much as for the advanced.

In the Minelab’s Safari Metal Detector, digital filtering will automatically eliminate and influence the ground signals for seamless detecting no matter what your field conditions may be!

Factory Included Accessories
Custom Battery Holder
PROtective Coil Cover
Instruction Manual
The retail price is $1,295.00 plus $398.69 in free and optional accessories with the total value of $1,693.69. However, by searching around it is possible to get this detector for under $1000 USD.

SPECIFICATIONS
Length: Adjustable from 43 to 54"
Weight: 3.6 lbs excluding batteries
Coil: 11" lightweight, waterproof, Double D
Audio Output: Internal speaker or headphones
Headphone Output: 1/4" stereo jack
Visual Display: 64 x 128 pixel liquid crystal display
Transmission: Full Brand Spectrum (FBS)
Simultaneous multiple frequency transmission ranging from 1.5kHz to 100 kHz
Ground Rejection
Ground Compensation: advanced digital filtering
Discrimination: Linear (-10 to +40 discrimination options)
Custom Select Discrimination: Yes (-10 to +40)
Detect Modes (Preset): 4 (Coin; Coin/Jewelry ; Relic; All Metal)
Detect Modes (Personal): 4 (Programmable/Save)
Auto Noise Cancel (Scanning): Yes
Pinpoint: Non-motion with audio and visual indicators
Sensitivity Adjustment: Fully Automatic/Manual (0-20)
Threshold: Adjustable (0-40)
Target Volume: Adjustable (0-20)
Trash Density: High/Low
Batteries: 12V Alkaline Pack - 8 x 1.5 AA (batteries not included)
Patents: US 4890064, US 5537041, US 5506506

Minelab Sovereign GT Metal Detector
The Minelab Sovereign GT Metal Detector is the cheapest of the four yet still has the Minelab’s Exclusive Iron Mask Feature.

The Iron Mask Feature is exclusive to Minelab metal detectors and eliminates signals from iron trash. Only signals from good targets are strong and clear, at much lower depths. e.g. A coin buried near a nail may be passed over by many detectors but not the Minelab Explorer SE Pro. Because of its 28 frequencies, the Explorer will distinguish between nonferrous, good targets and ferrous, iron trash. In the discrimination mode the iron mask feature allows you to locate good targets among ferrous junk.

The Sovereign GT Premium Brand Metal Detector w/ 10" Search coil retails at $995.00 - Plus $684.54 in free and optional metal detector accessories. Total cost $1,679.54

You can find it for less than $800 dollars with a little research.

SPECIFICATIONS
Length: Maximum 55in (1400mm) Minimum 38in (965mm)
Weight: Control Box* 20.3oz (568gms) Tornado 1000 Slimline Coil 23oz (654gms)
Configuration: 2 piece shaft and optional Hip mount
Technology: Broad Band Spectrum (BBS)
Transmit Frequency: 17 Frequencies (1.5, 3, 4.5....25.5 kHz)
Ground Balance : ACCU-TRAK" Automatic Ground Tracking
Battery System: NiMH battery pack (12v; 1000mAH)*
Mains Charger*: 110v(USA); 230v(EU); 240v(AUS)
Audio Loudspeaker & 1/4" headphone jack
Aluminum with Neoprene Cover and Strap
Controls On/Off Volume 1 turn knob
Sensitivity 1 turn knob
Threshold 1 turn knob
Discriminate Level Adjust 1 turn knob
All Metals/Discriminate with Iron Mask on/Discriminate with Iron Mask off 3 pos. switch
Notch Filter: 1 turn knob
Threshold / Silent Search: 2 pos. switch
Ground Track / Fixed / Pin Point: 3 pos. switch
Noise Cancel: 2 pos. switch

Optional Accessories
Target ID Meter: Digital
Mains Charger: 110V (USA), 230V (EU), 240V (AUS)
Tornado 800 Coil: 8" DD; Waterproof
Tornado 1000 Coil: 10" DD; Waterproof
NiMH Rechargeable Battery: 12V, 1000mAh
Alkaline Battery Pack : 8 x 1.5V (AA)
Car Charger: 12V, Cigarette lighter plug
Hip Mount Bag: Durable cordura with window and shoulder strap
Meter Bag: Durable cordura with window
Carry Bag: Protective and durable transport bag
Headphones: 32 ohms

Minelab GPX 4000 Gold Metal Detector
The Minelab's GPX 4000 Gold Metal Detector has Includes a 11" DD Coil, rechargeable system for house & auto, Minelab headphones, arm rest, instruction manual & coil cover, field guide,- nuts & bolts and a battery cable & harness.

Gain Functions: The gain function sets the overall sensitivity level of your detector. In areas where search conditions are mild, you can increase gain. Conversely, decrease gain in mineralized area. Our sophisticated gain control used in combination with other functions such as timing, audio, and ground balance enhance the performance.

Sensitive Timings: With 2 new sensitive option, the GPX-4000 offers dramatically reduced "hot rock" signals and false ground noise in "hot" ground conditions (Smooth Timing), and extra depth on large targets in "mild" ground conditions (Extra Timing).

New Ground Balance Type: The GPX-4000's new "Specific Ground Balance" mode will make detecting hot grounds easier than ever before; especially when using Mono-Loop coils.

New Response: Between large nuggets, prospectors also find many small nuggets. The deep large nuggets can be made more audible with the GPX-4000 new response function. By inverting normal target response deeper, larger nuggets will produce a response closer to that of smaller nuggets.
New Motion: The GPX-4000 will automatically optimize detecting performance based on the GPX-4000's sweep speed set by the operator.

New Volume Limit: The volume can now be set to reduce loud signals without compromising signal strength.
Lithium-Ion Battery:
Increased full time power compared to conventional batteries
Operates the GPX-4000 for over 12 hours.
Robust and lightweight aluminium housing.
Self-contained intelligent charging system
Three to four hours rapid charge time from 12v vehicle or AC adaptor.
Power monitoring on LCD display.
LCD Function Display: Allows you to select variable settings for key functions.
Precisely remember settings for future use,
No More unintentional change of key settings,
Personal Settings saved automatically on shut down,
Restore factory presets at any time.
Improved Control Panel Layout: The most commonly used functions are now conveniently and cleverly located on the front panel for quick and easy access.
Technology Dual Voltage (DVT) Multi-Period Sending (MPS)
Transmission Bi-Level Pulse Induction
Search System Motion Detector
Headphones Supplied - Koss 100ohm Coil Standard 11" Double D
Battery Lithium-Ion 9.2ah: 8.2v Weight 30.68oz
Battery Charging System AC & 12 volt vehicle
Length Maximum 51.5 inches Minimum 43.5 Inches
Weight Complete with 11" Coil (Excluding Battery & Accessories) 5.3 lbs
Configuration Shaft Mount 2-Piece Shaft

This is one of the more expensive metal detectors from Minelab and retails for $5,000.00, plus $444.70 in free and optional metal detector accessories for as total cost of $5,444.70

However, like the others, with some due diligence, it is possible to obtain this top of the range detector for a substantial amount less.

Last Word on Minelab
Minelab are a professional equipment manufacturer with operations internationally. Minelab manufacture what are considered some of the best metal detectors and the best metal detectors for gold word wide. They make metal detectors not only for gold, but also for mine detection, many of which are used in the armed forces and in civilian mine detection in Asia. All Minelab Metal Detectors produced are guaranteed for two years.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Buying a Metal Detector

There are a number of factors one needs to take into consideration when buying a metal detector.

As there are many different types of metal detectors, probably the first factor to consider is, what are you going to use it for? Of course, in this instances it is for the detection of gold. Even then one can get metal detectors that specialize in detecting precious metals, or one can get a more general one if one is going to use it to detect other things such as old coins for example.

Then there is the consideration of who is going to use it? Is it just yourself or perhaps the whole family? If children are going to use it then one might need to consider a shorter pole and a lighter model for them. Children also seem to pick up on the technical aspects rather quickly these days (after all, who sets up your video or CD machine) so that tends not to be an issue. One can also get a kids metal detector.

If you are a new user then perhaps a simpler model rather than the more sophisticated may be suitable to start off with. There are hundreds of different models to choose from and each have their own instructions on how to use them. The question then is, which is the most suitable for you? Asking a friend will usually only elicit the model that they prefer and have found suitable for them. Most metal detector users tend to stick to one model or, at the best, brand of metal detectors and so have little of any experience of other brands and models.

Some brands of metal detectors are heavier than others. This may be important if the person using it is slight rather than bulky.

Some require more technical expertise than others. Some have a bigger or different 'swing' than others also.

As a general rule the more expensive the detector the more features and refinement it has. So how often do you intend to use it may have a bearing on your purchase. If you use it once a year just going recreational gold prospecting for fun, then a simpler model may suffice. But if you intend prospecting on a more serious note on a regular basis then a more sophisticated detector will be more worthwhile.

Of course your budget will have something to say about how much you can spend on a metal detector and that, again, will depend on the purpose for buying one. Whether recreational, or for a more serious hobby.

The main criteria is probably to buy the best metal detector you can afford which will detect gold at a reasonable depth and which is not too heavy or complex to use.

A good way of doing this is to write down the features you need based upon the points listed above and then list the metal detectors that fits these requirements the most. One can then check for reviews of those detectors and using them as a guide pick the detector that best suits your requirements and which is affordable for you.

Buying a metal detector is not as complex as it sounds and when you have been out gold prospecting with a metal detector, will likely get the bug. It is likely it will not the last gold metal detector you buy!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

How to Use a Metal Detector

It is very important to know how to use a metal detector to get the best use out of it.

When you get a metal detector it is in pieces. Usually it will be a simple assembly job to screw or fit the pieces together and all metal detectors come with an instruction manual that includes this information.

Once you have your metal detector assembled the instruction booklet will tell you how to use it. The controls will vary with each make and model but there are some basics to using the metal detector it is useful to know and which will help you understand how to make the best use of it when prospecting for gold.

Getting used to the controls and how the information is displayed and indicated is the first step. It is very tempting, when you have assembled your first gold metal detector, to zoom out into the garden and give it a whirl. But this can be confusing as the detector is highly sensitive and you can end up confused by what you see and even hear.

A metal detector detects objects through the magnetic field generated by the coil at the bottom of the detector. In fact there are usually two coils, one for generating the field and the other for detecting any changes in that field caused by objects that enter that field.

The controls are used to filter out unwanted objects or to change what you want to detect or give information about what is being detected. How this information is given to you will depend on what settings you apply to the detector.

It is a good idea to practice using the metal detector at home before you take it out to do some gold prospecting. You can use a benchmark at home to start with. This is a simple way of understanding how your metal detector works.

Using a wooden table place your metal detector on the table.

Place in a row a number of metal objects that you might find when out prospecting for gold.
Bottle Top
Can Tab
Nail
Coin (US coin)
Foreign coin
Nail
Something gold, like a gold ring.
Some copper
Something silver
Take each object in turn and pass it under the coil. You will find there is a different sound for each object. Note these sounds down as they will help you to determine later when you are prospecting, what you have found when that sound is heard.

Try the same thing at different settings on your detector. You will notice sometimes the sound changes. You can apply filters also so that you can filter out the sounds created by such objects as nails, bottle tops etc. This makes it much easier as you then will not have to waste time digging out something of no value.

How you use the detector will make a difference also. Slow sweeps close to and along the ground usually produce the best results. Some objects can be buried quite deeply. Many modern metal detectors will display the depth of the object depending on the quality and sophistication of the detector.

Also there is such a thing as ground balance. Sometimes the ground, such as sand, is mineralized, which is to say, there are minute Specks of metal or metals mixed with the sand and this can interfere with the results obtained by the metal detector. So a ground balance filter should be incorporated in the detector to filter this out.

Lastly really following the manual supplied with the detector and practicing so that it is second nature will really help you to understand how to use a metal detector so that you get the best possible use and the best bang for your buck.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

How Metal Detectors Work

Knowing how metal detectors work will help one choose the right detector for your purposes and be able to use it more effectively.

Operating a metal detector is a simple process. Once you have turned the unit on, you simply move the coil back and forth slowly over the area you want to search. When the coil passes over a target object, say a small sliver or nugget of gold, for example, an audible signal is produced by the control unit to alert you that something has been found.

The more advanced the metal detectors the more it can pinpoint the type of metal it has located including the exact spot and depth.

A metal detector is usually fairly light-weight and is made up of the following parts:
A Stabilizer. Some of the more sophisticated detectors will have a stabilizer which is used to steady the unit as you sweep from side to side.

A Control box, of course which contains the circuitry, microprocessor, controls, speaker, and batteries.

The shaft. This connects the control box and the coil; Try to get a detector with an adjustable shaft so it can be set at a comfortable time for your height.

Search coil. This is the part that actually senses the object, also called the "search head" or "loop" and even, "antenna".
All metal detectors use one or more of the three following technologies:
Very low frequency (VLF)
VLF Phase Shifting
Pulse induction (PI)
Beat-frequency oscillation (BFO)
Very Low Frequency
VLF is also called induction balance, and is probably the most popular system used today. This is the system that uses two coils. A transmitter coil and a receiver coil.

In the Transmitter coil, an alternating current is sent along this wire, first in one direction and then in the other, thousands of times each second. The times the current changes direct each second is the frequency of the unit. The receiver coil is designed to act as an antenna and pick up to pick up frequency changes caused by metal objects entering the magnetic field produced by the first coil.

A metal detector can tell from the variations in the magnetic field detected by the detector coil how deep an object is and even, to a large extend, what sort of metal it is.

Different metals have different resistance levels to electricity. Also some conduct electricity better than others. Copper, for example, is an excellent conductor of electricity. Lead is a poor conductor. So the resistance to conducting electricity affects the magnetic field as does the depth of the article. The deeper it is the longer it takes to affect the magnetic field.

All these factors are picked up and analyzed by the metal detector and the information is displayed on the control panel.

Most metal detectors these days use integrated circuitry, like a mini computer, to process the information it received from the coil and displays for you to read.

VLF Phase Shifting
VLF Phase Shifting is the method by which a VLF Metal Detector can tell the difference between different metals. This uses what is called phase shifting. A phase shift is the difference in timing between the transmitters coil’s frequency and the frequency of the object.

This discrepancy can be the result of a couple of things.

Inductance – The is the speed at which a object conducts electricity. The easier it is to conduct the slower it is to react. Think of inductance as a deep river: Change the amount of water flowing into the river and it takes some time before you see a difference.

Resistance – An object that is reluctant to conduct electricity has a high resistance. Plastic and ceramic will not conduct it at all, hence is used as an insulator. Various metals all have different levels of resistance.

An object that has a high inductance, therefore, is going to have a larger phase shift because it will take longer to change its magnetic field. An object with a small resistance will have a smaller phase shift.

So your metal detector can distinguish between various metals by analyzing the phase shift of those objects you detect, and will display the results for you on the metal detectors display panel.

This means it can discriminate and this is useful when you are working an area that may have mineralized sand as you can filter out the results caused by the mineralized sand as well as single objects, junk such as bottle tops, pull tabs and so on.

Of course this is all done in fractions of a second and all you will see are the result displayed by the detector.,

PI Technology
Less common but still very useful is the metal detector based on PI technology. PI means Pulse Induction.

As you might have guessed, this uses a pulse to detect object rather than a magnetic field and so uses only one coil to perform the purpose of detection.

A PI detector sends out a pulse of current through the coil of wire. When it does a brief magnetic field is produced. When the pulse ends the magnetic field reverses polarity (remember all magnetic fields have a north and south pole?) and this collapses very fast and results in a sharp electrical spike. That spike then causes another current to run through the coil. This is very fast and lasts just 30 microseconds. Another pulse is sent and the process repeats. Usually about 100 or more times per second.

This technology sends powerful, short bursts (pulses) of current through a coil of wire. Each pulse generates a brief magnetic field. When the pulse ends, the magnetic field reverses polarity and collapses very suddenly, resulting in a sharp electrical spike. This spike lasts a few microseconds (millionths of a second) and causes another current to run through the coil. This current is called the reflected pulse and is extremely short, lasting only about 30 microseconds. Another pulse is then sent and the process repeats. A typical PI-based metal detector sends about 100 pulses per second, but the number can vary greatly based on the manufacturer and model, ranging from a couple of dozen pulses per second to over a thousand.

This is rather like echoes. You remember the difference when you talk or sing in a room with a hard surface compared to one with soft surfaces? A bathroom is a good example. The sound in a room with hard surfaces lasts longer than in a room with soft surfaces. That’s why your voice sounds so wonderful in the bathroom when taking a shower but not quite so good in the living room with the carpet and soft drapes. In a PI metal detector, the magnetic fields from target objects add their "echo" to the reflected pulse, making it last just a fraction of a second longer than it would without them. Then a sampling circuit monitors the length of the reflected pulse sand compares that to the length expected. The circuit can tell the difference between the decay rates of the reflected pulse sand deduct if there is a metal object interfering with it.

BFO Technology
Another system to detect metal is by the use of a beat-frequency oscillator (BFO). In a BFO system, there are two coils of wire. A larger coil is in the search head, and a smaller coil is located inside the control box. Each coil is connected to an oscillator generating thousands of pulses of current per second the frequency of which is slightly offset between the two coils.

The coil generates radio waves as the pulses travel through each coil and a tiny receiver in the control box picks up the radio waves. From these it then generates and creates an audible series of tones (beats) based on the difference between the frequencies.

Simply put, when the coil in search head passes over a metal object, such as a gold nugget, it creates a magnetic field around the gold nugget. This magnetic field interferes with the frequency of the radio waves generated by the search-head coil and this causes a change in the audio tone.

The BFO system is very simple and so they can be manufactured at a very low cost.

Last Word on Metal Detectors
The metal detector you decide to use will depend primarily on your budget, the purpose you will use it for and how often, but having the above information and knowing how metal detectors work will go a long way to buying and using the right metal detector for you.