Metal Detectors

Spooner

Well-Known Member
#1
Any advise on getting a good basic beginners one.
I don't want to spend mega bucks , just something good quality that will last for a fair while.
O'l mate in town , has opened up a Gold Detector Shop.
He was testing a unit that the customer had brought back with battery problems and it pinged on a quartz rock . I thought he was taking the piss out of me as we only walked over the road 50m.
Took it back to the shop and cracked it open and it had a lump of gold in it .
I wouldn't have believed it , if I hadn't seen it .
Have been thinking for a while now to get one , but know nothing about them .
Everywhere we go around here is all old gold mining country.
Any advice for those that do @rogerazz @sharkcaver or others ?
 

dno67

Well-Known Member
#2
Cheap is not good and good is not cheap.
I'd go for a Minelab GPX 4500, 4000 will be cheaper but quite a bit less
capable.
Personally I'd suggest nothing but a minelab, maybe because that's what
my research had me buy. Just a bloody same I never seem to find time to
use the bloody thing.
 

rogerazz

4x4 Earth Contributer
#3
G'day Rick @Spooner. It was my brother who got real interested when on a weekend up Maryborough way. Then he bought a property, retired up there and became fair dinkum. He started with a small unit, however the bigger more expensive ones nowadays go deeper, so that is something to consider if you stick with it. I would probably go not to dear at the start and if you get real keen go dearer. Like I reckon you are talking a couple of thousand or more. Minelab were the go from the dector shop in Maryborough. Detecting around old halls, churches etc. were blokes used to park their horses :) and even along beaches or places were people congregate like in parks does not find gold but you pick up lots of other stuff.:D. They are good to carry in back of vehicle wherever you go and pull out for a quick search.
He did find some gold but not enough to become rich.:)
 

sharkcaver

Well-Known Member
#4
Mate, that is a hard question to answer. What is your target, gold or treasure. That will determine if you should look at a dedicated gold detector or not. In regards to gold, obviously, the more you spend, the better the detector. The top of the wazza minelab retails for about 10K now. That is serious money in anyone's language. And its beyond my scope. I have a 4500. It's a good machine, but with the coils I have, it struggles on the fine gold. I have a mate with a 2300 and its a weapon on fine surface stuff, but loses punch once the gold is buried rather quickly. So to answer your question, we need a sort of budget to work from and an intended usage. The 4500's and above sell relatively easily (over here anyway) so if you did invest in one of those, you could be reasonably assured of getting your money back if you find it's not for you.

Like buying a camper, maybe hiring one for a week and getting out on the ground using it, may give you better perspective. If Ole mate has a shop, surely he could look after you in that respect.

That said, I still haven't popped my cherry, so I'm probably not the person to advise. Part II of lucked out at leo will be up shortly. You can see me come home empty handed again. But the beers by the fire and roast in the camp oven make it all worthwhile ;)
 

boobook

Well-Known Member
#5
Spooner, at one stage I had the brainwave that a lot of the places I go to are old mining areas, and surely today's technology will find gold that was overlooked. As I researched it, I realised anything other than a good $6000 plus unit is a waste of money given Australia's mineralized soil. I think you will soon find that a $1000 to $2000 detector is a waste of money. Undeterred I hired a Minelab for 4 days.

It worked fantastically. It started beeping almost straight away. I spent hours digging, sifting and sorting dirt and found lots of tiny bits of iron. Mostly the remaining old heads of nails about the size of a pin head. I know I had little idea what I was doing, but I did research it a fair bit and was definitely in old gold areas.

Hiring for a few days in this case was good value. The episode completely turned me off gold detecting. Beer detecting in the fridge is much more productive.
 

Albynsw

Well-Known Member
#6
@Spooner , you trying to get a bit of money together to build a bigger house :p

The excavator operator I had here last week was telling me when he was operating the D11’s in the WA mines that he would see lumps of gold in the ground but couldn’t do anything about it and had to just keep pushing it in. :eek:
 

Choook

Well-Known Member
#7
I was just look at this two nights ago. After about three hours of reading, watching videos and searching ebay, gumtree and store pages, I think I'll be giving it a miss. For me it is just too expensive to seriously get into, as above I think your minimum spend on a decent detector would be in the vicinity of $3,000+ and yes the top of the range Minelab is almost $10,000.

Maybe a couple of hundred for some fun while out camping and doing other stuff might not be the worst investment.
 

sharkcaver

Well-Known Member
#8
Don't knock back the treasure detectors. They could still find gold, though nowhere near as detailed as a dedicated gold detector. But if its of big enough size, you will still find it. The treasure detectors are more suitable of finding old relics. My mate found a half sovereign a couple of years back, minted late 1800's. Now that was pretty cool. - mind you hundreds of bullets, nails and staples got him to that point.
 

Spooner

Well-Known Member
#9
I have a 4500. It's a good machine, but with the coils I have, it struggles on the fine gold. I have a mate with a 2300 and its a weapon on fine surface stuff, but loses punch once the gold is buried rather quickly. So to answer your question, we need a sort of budget to work from and an intended usage. The 4500's and above sell relatively easily (over here anyway) so if you did invest in one of those, you could be reasonably assured of getting your money back if you find it's not for you.
I checked out that 2300 model and I think that would suit me fine as a beginner .
 

Spooner

Well-Known Member
#10
If Ole mate has a shop, surely he could look after you in that respect.
Call me a cynic , lol , but I wouldn't trust him as far as I can spit ;)
Anyone in the trade will have lots of little bits and can easily place around to show how easy it is , lol .
I felt like I had a "Come in Spinner" moment .
Not saying that he did anything of the kind mind you at all , just seemed too easy if you know what I mean :D
 

Spooner

Well-Known Member
#11
Like I reckon you are talking a couple of thousand or more. Minelab were the go from the dector shop in Maryborough. Detecting around old halls, churches etc. were blokes used to park their horses :) and even along beaches or places were people congregate like in parks does not find gold but you pick up lots of other stuff.:D.
Thats the go Rog,
I don't mind spending up to 2-3k on one.
Really id be a fool to think you could find gold just like that . Besides the whole area has been raped bare going back to 150 years.
I want to get one as a compliment to our travels , as its all at our back door now and easy day trips.
Besides will give Jean something to do while i'm cutting firewood.
We have been learning the history and exploring everywhere around here . Its pretty cool really as to what places you can find if you know (told by locals) where to look :)
 

sharkcaver

Well-Known Member
#12
The 2300 is a weapon on fine gold. Also waterproof, good for streams and the beach. But you are looking around 4.5K for one. 4.5K is a pretty big outlay for something you are not sure will interest you in the long term. 2nd hand, obviously cheaper.
 

rogerazz

4x4 Earth Contributer
#13
Thats the go Rog,
I don't mind spending up to 2-3k on one.
Really id be a fool to think you could find gold just like that . Besides the whole area has been raped bare going back to 150 years.
I want to get one as a compliment to our travels , as its all at our back door now and easy day trips.
Besides will give Jean something to do while i'm cutting firewood.
We have been learning the history and exploring everywhere around here . Its pretty cool really as to what places you can find if you know (told by locals) where to look :)
My brother's interest in detecting led to him studying up on lots of places around, collecting old maps, driving forests etc. and gave him a greater appreciation of the land as well as a hobby with lots of fun and experiences. We as a family with kids and lots of grand kids spent a lot of time with him detecting, camping, having BBQ's etc. and it became another good reason for 4wding in the bush.
The morning after the night before on one of the many weekends.
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Brother Detecting, I think he found a stirrup off a saddle.
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Checking out the slag heaps, lots of old mines around there.
Alma weekend 22June 08 (19).jpg

When Goody died in his back yard a few years ago, we built a memorial where he fell. RIP mate.
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