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The Digger :Your Metal Detecting Newsletter
July 31, 2022

Welcome New Subscribers

Thank you to the new subscribers to "The Digger." Each month I try to bring new and fresh ideas and articles that pertain to the hobby of metal detecting. But each month is a work in progress and a challenge to keep "The Digger" ongoing. As I often mentioned, I try to avoid redundancy but do at times post stories or articles that were previously in past issues of "The Digger." I do this so that new subscribers get a chance to read them.

Of course, I always welcome emails, comments, and any ideas that you would like to see in "The Digger."

Thanks again for subscribing.


Metal Detecting Forums, YouTube and Social Media

Unfortunately, the question of "what is the best detector to use" will at times bring out the worse in people. I've seen arguments on metal detecting forums, social media, and YouTube comments with opinions that sometimes make no sense. For example, here is one argument on a forum regarding "what is the best metal detector" from a couple of knuckleheads. I will paraphrase as much as I can remember because, fortunately, the moderators removed the comments after things went cuckoo.

Joe, "hey everyone, I'm new to the hobby, and I want to buy a metal detector. Which is the best one for not a lot of money. I'm looking to spend between $300-400?"

Mike, "Joe, buy a Minelab Vanquish 440. It's a deep diver. It loves depth. I found a gold ring at 8 inches with mine. And the price is in your range."

Allen, "Joe, the Vanquish sucks. All Minelabs should be sent to scrap yards. If you're looking for a deep-seeking detector that works without all of the technology needed just to turn them on like a Minelab, then buy a Fisher F5. This detector never stops finding coins. I found a silver Barber quarter that was beneath a tree root 4 inches in diameter. The root was 3 inches deep, and the coin was 7 inches below that. It beats the Minelab Vanquish by a mile."

Allen, "Mike, eat it. You have no idea what you're talking about. I'll match my Vanquish against that POS Fisher anytime."

Mike, "Allen, you're a pretty brave guy behind your comment. If you'd like, PM me your address, and we can talk about this mano a mano."

This last remark by Mike was why the moderators removed the posts and most likely banned the two from the forum.

This kind of nonsense is uncalled for. But unfortunately, social media and forums seem to bring out second-rate people. Anyway, two observations that I made were these.

First, I would bet that neither Mike nor Allen ever used a detector other than the one their using. And that reason does not make them experts on "what is the best detector."

Second, notice that Joe asked the question but never came back to question either Mike or Allen. He was wise enough not to get involved with the argument. But unfortunately, Joe probably never got the answer he wanted.

What is really ironic, is that lots of people on social media that belittle metal detectors and their users have no idea what their talking about. As a metal detector dealer, I've been telling people for years to learn how their detector operates. Practice many hours with it and fine-tune it to the point that you can almost tell what the target is before you dig it.

But lots of people in the hobby don't learn their detectors. And then they call the metal detector they purchased junk. So they venture onto social media and metal detecting forums, bashing their detector model for poor performance. When all they needed to do was be patient and learn how to use it.

For those kinds of people, the light never comes on.

So What Is The Best Metal Detector?

The advice I always give people regarding "what is the best metal detector" is this.

There are many great detectors. Each price range has both great detectors and bad detectors. Know how much you want to spend first, then look at the metal detectors in that price range and ask questions about them from REPUTABLE dealers or people you know that are familiar with that model. There is no one "best" metal detector. Now, a word to newbies looking to buy their first detector.

If you're looking to buy your first detector, then be suspicious of the dealer wanting to sell you a metal detector with all the bells and whistles and the technology to launch a Titan II missile. There is no need to spend hundreds, even a thousand dollars or more, on a first detector unless you want to, and that was your intention all along. Some of the best metal detectors for beginners cost between $300 - $450, prices well in the range of what Joe at the forum was able to pay. In addition, many of those detectors at the above prices are also used by individuals that have much more experience than a newbie to the hobby.

I use a metal detector that is twenty years old and cost me $300 when I purchased it new. It still works, and I still find stuff. I've had metal detectors that cost a thousand dollars or more, and I sold every one of them within a year. Of course, as a metal detector dealer, it was easier for me to buy and sell. But in any case, the expensive detectors offered me no more of a success rate in finds than my $300 model. Also, I have metal detectors I bought 50 years ago that are more efficient than some of the newer models today. I can easily say that a few of those oldies but goodies detectors, compared to some of the newer ones, are the "best" metal detectors.

You will never know which detector is the best for you until you have used a few of them. If you don't care about having the best, like many others, then keeping and using one metal detector is the best choice, as long as you have learned how to use it properly. Unfortunately, sometimes the best detectors do not deliver good finds because the user does not know how to operate them correctly, as I mentioned in my story above.

An example of not understanding how your metal detector works will affect what you find.

A friend I detected with on occasion used an expensive metal detector. His detector was at that time, a state-of-the-art hi-tech machine. But my friend could never find anything smaller than a sewer grate. He would cuss and moan about what a piece of crap his detector was, that he was sorry he paid so much for it, and that he was ready to quit the hobby.

I'll admit, I made a lot of fun of him about his lack of detecting success whenever we were searching an area.

"Hey Eric, when are you gonna buy a good detector," I would tell him while laughing as I watched him swing his coil like a mad man a foot off the ground.

Eric would mumble something about how lucky I was to find the goodies I did and that I just happened to be in the right spot so often. And that he was an unlucky person, and that's the way his entire life was.

Even after I told him many times to learn his detector, slow down and lower his coil, he never practiced what I told him.

To prove my point to him, I followed in his footsteps when detecting and found many nice items while he was digging huge pieces of rusted iron and metal car bumpers. And WOW, did he get upset in those instances.

"Frank, you lucky S.O.B." he'd yell. I keep telling you this detector of mine doesn't help my luck. It's not the best."

There are many answers to the question of "what is the best metal detector." But for me, it's easier to answer the question, "what are the worse metal detectors."

How to Find More Gold Rings - It's No Secret

My old friend and treasure-hunting mentor Dan had hundreds of gold rings on display. They were inside his treasure hunting shop. Besides those on display, Dan said he sold hundreds more throughout his sixty-plus years of detecting. He found every one of them with a metal detector. Dan used a simple knowledge of metal detecting and a methodical approach to finding all those rings. Simply, Dan searched parks and schoolyards in the “all metal mode”. And he dug every signal.

Old man Dan was a treasure hunter extraordinaire. He didn’t just search schoolyards and parks. Dan also panned for gold in Alaska. He traveled to Europe in search of ancient relics. Dan researched for and located treasures all across America. Dan knew what he was doing. So when my old friend spoke, I listened. When Dan preached searching in “all metal” to find gold coins and rings, I knew he was right because the evidence of so many of his gold rings was on display.

Many of us know that most parks and beaches are filled with trash. Pull tabs, tin foil, bottle caps, and every piece of junk you can think of has been sadly tossed onto the ground by scumbags who frequent those areas. Trying to detect through that junk, even with the discrimination of your detector set to eliminate most of it, is a nightmare. The thought of searching in the “all metal” mode and digging every signal is not an exciting way to detect. But, in doing so, patience can be rewarded with gold.

Dan had that patience. And, his patience paid off HUGELY. Remember, those pull-tabs and some other junk items register in the same range as gold. So, he knew if he discriminated out all those bottle caps and pull-tab signals, he would most likely be missing the gold rings. So if you want to find gold rings, set your detector to “all metal,” dig those pull-tabs, bottle caps, and junk. And then watch your gold ring inventory increase.

A Piece From The Past

“During the Civil War, large amounts of personal treasure were concealed in and around the vicinity of Gulport in Mississippi. In 1974 one treasure hunter located about $50,000 in silver plate and coins near the foundations of a burnt-out plantation manner. In 1975 two other treasure hunters located about $40,000 in gold coins (the market price in 1974) in the well on an abandoned plantation.”

Credit – Robert F. Marx, Buried Treasures

Newport Beach Retiree Stan Ross, aka the Metal Detector Man,

finds O.C.'s Lost Riches

“Newport Beach on Wednesday afternoon is a crush of people, and the air is riotous with sound — the joyful shrieks of children at play, warnings from cautious parents, the relentless pounding of surf upon sand — but Stan Ross is oblivious." Newport Beach Retiree aka the Metal Detector Man

From Watches to a Safe,

People Reveal Best Metal Detecting Finds in Post

“Redditors recently revealed their best finds while metal detecting, from a full safe with passports and money to numerous pieces of jewelry.

The viral Reddit post, titled, "People who metal detect on beaches, in parks, etc., What's your best find," has been upvoted 19,100 times since being posted on February 24 by u/TheRealJayAre in the subreddit "Ask Reddit." From Watches to a Safe

Northeast Michigander Finds Joy, Treasures Through Metal Detecting

“ALPENA — What started as a small get together between friends and relatives showed one Northeast Michigan resident what would become a lifelong passion. Lowell Miller has been metal detecting since he was nine years old and he was introduced to it when his uncle and his uncle’s friends used metal detectors in his yard.” Northeast Michigander Finds Joy, Treasure

Local Metal Detectorists Are Practitioners of an Uncommon Pursuit

“What’s an outdoor hobby that’s not too strenuous yet keeps participants physically active, with the added allure of possibly finding valuable artifacts? It’s metal detecting – the hobby for which the old adage, “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure,” rings true. For two area residents, Alex Morton and Mike Putzek, it is a sport that keeps them coming back for more, but for different reasons.” Local Metal Detectorists Are Practitioners of an Uncommon Pursuit

Death Be To Traitors

Finally, after years of research and writing, I have completed my book, “Death Be To Traitors.”

And for my subscribers to “The Digger,” I am offering this book at a reduced price of just $4.95. This price is a discount of 50% off the price at my website at $9.95.

The book is a digital eBook in PDF format and contains 265 pages. So it can be read on most devices. There are no soft cover or hard book copies available.

Here is a brief description of “Death Be To Traitors.”

Legends of buried treasure are in every state. However, there is not much written about the possible treasures that funded the assassination of Abraham Lincoln. In addition, like President John F. Kennedy's assassination, questions about who the killer was had never been answered.

John Wilkes Booth was named the murderer of President Lincoln. Yet, questions arise about why he killed him. Did he act alone, and, if not, who also was involved with the murder.

At that time, a known secret society was the KGC, the Knights of the Golden Circle. The Knights of the Golden circle were a secret society started by George Bickley. Bickley was from Cincinnati. He was a master at lying and set out to convince others that his secret society, with the help of the southern border states, could conquer Mexico, Central America, and Cuba.

This circle of countries would represent the "golden circle" of the KGC, thus the Knights of the Golden Circle. Included within the circle were individuals from northern states who sympathized with the south and their belief in slavery. The KGC wanted to use those northern influences and extend slavery into the "golden circle" countries and the southern states, thus enhancing slavery in the southern states.

Bickley gained the support of some Southerners. In 1860 members of the Knights of the Golden Circle were paying dues. They intended to use the money to purchase arms to support their efforts. High-ranking officials from the states of Indiana, Ohio, and Illinois also supported the confederacy's idea of perpetuating slavery. The sympathizer states ran secret cells or castles where they held meetings. When the civil war broke out, the KGC cached millions of dollars of currency, gold, and silver to fight a secret war against the northern army. They intended to help the south win the war and keep slavery in existence. Unfortunately for the KGC, President Abraham Lincoln and his efforts to end slavery were a thorn in the side of the KGC's plans to preserve slavery. Stories circulated that some KGC members were unhappy with Abe Lincon's ideas regarding freeing enslaved people, which led to the idea of assassinating him. More stories came to light after John Wilkes Booth assassinated President Lincoln. The narratives expressed that the KGC approached Booth to commit the crime.

The KGC had the means to pay Booth for the crime. Besides the dues they collected from its members, the secret organization was also a criminal sect. They stole millions of dollars of cash, gold, and silver from banks, civil war payroll trains, and stagecoaches to help finance their illegal activities and then hid their caches in various states. The legends of buried treasures regarding the KGC ring true. KGC treasures were uncovered in states across America. And there are still millions of dollars yet to be found. Regrettably, greedy government officials, agencies, and ruthless criminals have been stealing KGC treasures for profit. As a result, treasure hunters searching for these treasures are threatened. However, undeterred by the threats from powerful individuals, treasure hunters continue to search for KGC caches.

Much of history is subjective. Many stories about buried treasures are myths. But one thing is for sure; many truths about these treasures lie in silence. The facts hide between the words not spoken; until one day, that veil of secrecy is torn away, and the truth is exposed.

Two treasure hunters peel away the layers of myths surrounding the assassination of President Lincoln and the involvement of the KGC in that treasonous act by questioning the myths and researching for answers. “Death Be To Traitors” is the result.

I have dedicated this book to those brave men and women in the hobby of metal detecting who research, locate and share their historical finds with the public, academia, and government officials, even as those people criticize them.

For more information and to purchase “Death Be To Traitors”, click the following link.


We Want Your Stories and Pictures

One of the excitements we get from metal detecting is seeing what kind of “stuff” others are finding. Not only do we enjoy seeing the items found, but many of us like to hear the stories about how those finds were located. So, let’s see your “stuff.”

Many have posted pictures and brief stories of their finds at my website. It’s easy to do. You basically create your own webpage with a picture or pictures, and a brief story of how you found the items. Once your page is posted, others will be able to view your page, and make comments. You will also have your own url link to the webpage you built. Use that link to post to Facebook, Twitter, or Pintrest and share with others.

So show your “stuff.” We want to see the goodies! Stories About Your Finds

Back Issues

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