metal detecting technology jump in 70's or 80's

pulltabfelix

Hero Member
Jan 29, 2018
866
1,342
North Atlanta
Detector(s) used
Equinox 800, 6" coil, stock coil, Coiltek 10 x 5 Nox, ProFind-35 pinpointer, Simplex(sold), Vanquish 540(sold), Vanquish 44. sold: AT Pro with stock coil, Nel Thunder, Garrett 5" x 8" coil, Garrett C
Primary Interest:
Relic Hunting
I remember talking to an older detectorists about Atlanta. He talked about a time in the past where he said the detectors got really good and the hobby exploded in terms of number of detectorists. I cannot remember when he was referring to. the 1970's or 1980's? Also wat was the technological jump. I know it wasn't digital because back then the detectors were bigger boxes or rectangles and analog. Just trying to refresh my facts here.

He was talking about why an area around Peacthree creek in Atlanta has been stripped of civil war relics and now rarely produces any relics and does not even think the new multi-frequency detectors like the Equinox are even going to help much. He pretty much said at a certain point in time these relic hunters got real good with that generation of metal detectors and were cleaning up.
 
Upvote 3

releventchair

Gold Member
May 9, 2012
16,219
33,934
Primary Interest:
Other
Reading a book just last night...
All kinds of different detectors. From the sixties on pretty much.
VLF and it's abilities "back then" was like a newcomer. Fast. But suited (like each type is ) best to certain tasks.

VLF.detectors.
TR detectors.
BFO detectors.
PI." ".
RF." ".

Folks getting familiar and then good with new technology (or even old) did get second passes where earlier detecting was shallower or less effective.
But like many cases , hunting where others have hunted repeatedly over time is far different than hunting where others have not detected. (As if we really know if a site has been hit?)

A friend met detecting from another state and who visited time to time and I had fun guessing how many buckets of recoveries and how big came out of a park we hit too often.
Many years and plenty of detectorists. Including a now passed on local with some documentation of some of his prior recoveries.

Early seventies my hometowns detecting was far different than today. And many of those people are gone now. Along with tales of recoveries.
One store owner had a gallon jar of Indian head cents on his counter from the park right next door. Annual carnival long running event (s) site. One is left to wonder of the silver recovered. But others mentioned silver , sometimes , though secrecy was common. Understandably when locals sought the best producing sites and competition increased..
And he was slowly going farther from the stores front door. ( But not too far....) Those kinds of tales.
Hinting that there were lots of coins in the right areas before the hobby's participants surged.

An uncle years ahead of me detecting , as with the uncle getting me interested were in the game early on. They didn't leave much where I followed. l.o.l..
I no longer remember how big the coil was in inches (or feet it seemed) on a detector he loaned me when we hunted a very remote area one hunt.
He was after something. I don't know what that day.... That was the kind of taciturn hunters some (or many) of those detectorists were.
Outside the field and in generic terms some of them would share a little info. Others more. But like today it was more about , learn a metal detector real well if you really want to participate..
 
Last edited:

bigtim1973

Hero Member
Oct 12, 2007
711
140
Middle Tennessee
Detector(s) used
XP ORX XP Deus
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
The biggest leap was in the late 80s to early 90s. Then the tweaking went from there to what we have available now.

The guys who did it back in the 60 and so on got to reap the best harvest because there were no laws against it.

So everything they dug was silver and good stuff


Today there is still a ton left. And I would not be discouraged to find what the old machines left behind. It happens all of the time.

The simplex and vanquish line of machines rival the most advanced units from times gone by. No contest at all. I remember because those were the ones that were used when I was a kid and I have used them....here is a link to those old units. Oh man they had so many cool knobs and that big needle!!


https://www.treasurelinx.com/d-tex.html


There is still much to find out there and plenty of places that have never been hit. You just have to find those spots and keep on trucking.

If you take a good look at some of the old ads from Compass and D-Tex or Garrett's they mention stuff like able to hit a quarter 6 inches in the ground with their new BFO coil


6 inches is 1/2 if what a modern machine can hit on a quarter now. Maybe even 1/3 especially with the units with boost mode.
 
Last edited:

cudamark

Gold Member
Mar 16, 2011
11,622
10,541
San Diego
🏆 Honorable Mentions:
3
Detector(s) used
Equinox 800, Fisher Impulse AQ, E-Trac, 3 Excal 1000's, White's GM3 V-sat. White's TM808, VibraProbe, 15" NEL Attack, 5X10 Joey, Steath 920ix and 720i, TRX, etc....
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
There were several jumps in tech over the years. IMO, the transition from BFO to TR to VLF was the biggest one back then. Today, it's multifrequency and fast processors that have added depth and stability in difficult ground and salt water.
 

Carl-NC

Bronze Member
Mar 19, 2003
1,798
1,169
Oregon & Texas
Detector(s) used
Custom Designs and Prototypes
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
Around 1974 White's introduced the Coinmaster V which was the first VLF/ground balance design. Tom Dickey famously used that in the Atlanta area and found gobs of CW relics.
In 1977 Bounty Hunter introduced the Red Baron which was the first VLF motion discriminator. That was the biggest turning point for detectors, and every VLF model made today (including multifrequency) uses the same basic method.
1991 was another notable year when multifrequency was introduced in the Minelab Sovereign and the Fisher CZ5.
 

TheGreenBoy

Sr. Member
Nov 10, 2017
327
358
Countryside
Detector(s) used
DBP2010, eeTH, tx850
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
I wonder what is the advantage of using multifrequency? Greter depth? More accurate VDI and depth meter, maybe now became a measurment rather than best guess? Higher sensitivity on various metas perhaps? I would really like to hear first hand experience from you. Thanks in advance.

About detector developements i belive we should mention Nokta Invenio in 2020 first visualizing hobby detector and of couse application of advanced visualization algoritms in professional PI/magnetometer systems developped in last 10 yeares, or so.
 

JerV3

Gold Member
Feb 28, 2005
5,716
2,606
Three Rivers
🥇 Banner finds
1
Detector(s) used
Minelab Etrac ,Xp Deus, Ctx 3030, Vanquish 440 X 2, Equinox 600, Equinox 800
I started metal detecting in the early 90s with a whites eagle spectrum.

Was considered one of the best at that time.

It was heavy but did work well. Was good to about 4 inches or so maybe 5. But the majority of the old stuff was only 4 or 5 inches deep.

It wasn't easy to find silver in my opinion. Most sites had already been worked over at that point.

However over the years detectors got better. I'm finding more silver nowadays than I did 20 yrs ago.

Newer technology now is allowing us to find the barbers, seateds etc that machines from 20 years ago weren't seeing.

Still lots of treasures to be had out there.

I am averaging 100 silvers per season over the past 20 yrs.

Jer
 

WG2020

Sr. Member
Oct 9, 2018
431
607
SW Ohio
Detector(s) used
CTX 3030 and Equinox 800
Primary Interest:
Metal Detecting
Pulltabfelix,

Great topic. While there has been amazing technology leaps and the folks detecting in the 60s and 70s likely scoped up a fortune in silver coins and relics, I believe there is a whole lot left. I read an article where the author was just how much was missed due to iron masking. He had detected/gridded over a fixed sized site multiple times and documented each time. The first time just going for the coins, then removing the iron, then going over and over again. Each time finding more as the iron was removed. His went on 6-8 times. Then he dug out the site at number of inches down and shifted the soil. In the end he found a significant amount more coins after sifting the soil than in the multiple times detecting. I think Cru’s detecting is a perfect example of this. He wrote once about the unbelievable number of times they grid each site and still are finding coins and relics. Bottom line, yes, a lot of the easy finds were scoped up in the 60s and 70s but there is are a hell of a lot of coins and relics still waiting to be found. You almost need to directly over an item to get a good to semi good signal. Just think how much of a large yard, park, or field is missed each hunt because someone didn’t get over a target well enough to raise a signal to dig. Good luck with your hunts. Walt
 

bigtim1973

Hero Member
Oct 12, 2007
711
140
Middle Tennessee
Detector(s) used
XP ORX XP Deus
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
I started metal detecting in the early 90s with a whites eagle spectrum.

Was considered one of the best at that time.

It was heavy but did work well. Was good to about 4 inches or so maybe 5. But the majority of the old stuff was only 4 or 5 inches deep.

It wasn't easy to find silver in my opinion. Most sites had already been worked over at that point.

However over the years detectors got better. I'm finding more silver nowadays than I did 20 yrs ago.

Newer technology now is allowing us to find the barbers, seateds etc that machines from 20 years ago weren't seeing.

Still lots of treasures to be had out there.

I am averaging 100 silvers per season over the past 20 yrs.

Jer

That was my first advanced machine too. I did try it out for a long time but I just could not click with it. Plus it wasn't decent on batteries either. So I took and sold it and went for a lesser machine ...the Tesoro Silver Sabre 2. And I could not have been happier in doing so.
 

Slingshot

Bronze Member
Apr 3, 2004
1,075
1,189
Southern Appalachia
Detector(s) used
Whites CM2 BFO, Harbor Freight 9 function, BH Pioneer 202, Fisher F22
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
I started digging in Atlanta in 65 with a BFO, the focus then was CW artifacts, which I did find. Then upgraded to a TR unit in 75, with the main focus on CW artifacts but also starting to do some old coin detecting. In 85 I got a VLF, along with the other guys and started cleaning out CW sites, going in with standard coils to look for hot spots, then coming back repeatedly with bigger coils until the site quit producing. Lots of guys doing this same thing really put a hurt on the CW sites around Atlanta after about a decade of constant digging. There is still stuff there, but now it is more about the site than the machine you are using.
 
OP
pulltabfelix

pulltabfelix

Hero Member
Jan 29, 2018
866
1,342
North Atlanta
Detector(s) used
Equinox 800, 6" coil, stock coil, Coiltek 10 x 5 Nox, ProFind-35 pinpointer, Simplex(sold), Vanquish 540(sold), Vanquish 44. sold: AT Pro with stock coil, Nel Thunder, Garrett 5" x 8" coil, Garrett C
Primary Interest:
Relic Hunting
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #12
Around 1974 White's introduced the Coinmaster V which was the first VLF/ground balance design. Tom Dickey famously used that in the Atlanta area and found gobs of CW relics.
In 1977 Bounty Hunter introduced the Red Baron which was the first VLF motion discriminator. That was the biggest turning point for detectors, and every VLF model made today (including multifrequency) uses the same basic method.
1991 was another notable year when multifrequency was introduced in the Minelab Sovereign and the Fisher CZ5.

Probably the reason I don't find much since I now hunt some of those sties he hunted.

here is a link that shows some of his finds: Tom Dickey Collection
 
OP
pulltabfelix

pulltabfelix

Hero Member
Jan 29, 2018
866
1,342
North Atlanta
Detector(s) used
Equinox 800, 6" coil, stock coil, Coiltek 10 x 5 Nox, ProFind-35 pinpointer, Simplex(sold), Vanquish 540(sold), Vanquish 44. sold: AT Pro with stock coil, Nel Thunder, Garrett 5" x 8" coil, Garrett C
Primary Interest:
Relic Hunting
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #13
Around 1974 White's introduced the Coinmaster V which was the first VLF/ground balance design. Tom Dickey famously used that in the Atlanta area and found gobs of CW relics.
In 1977 Bounty Hunter introduced the Red Baron which was the first VLF motion discriminator. That was the biggest turning point for detectors, and every VLF model made today (including multifrequency) uses the same basic method.
1991 was another notable year when multifrequency was introduced in the Minelab Sovereign and the Fisher CZ5.
It is amazing what tom dickey found. He roamed far and wide in Georgia and his collection of artillery shells was probably unmatched by few. I hunt now where he used to hunt in metro Atlanta. He and others of his generation really cleaned out those areas. Now CW bullets relics are hard to find. But modern aluminum trash is more than plentiful unfortunately. I am going to make another crack at it with my new CTX3030. Did not have much luck with my nox 800, spent so much time digging urban metallic trash.
 

devldog

Silver Member
Mar 9, 2012
2,795
4,602
Georgia
Detector(s) used
Whites MXT ALL PRO, Minelab Safari
Primary Interest:
Relic Hunting
Around 1974 White's introduced the Coinmaster V which was the first VLF/ground balance design. Tom Dickey famously used that in the Atlanta area and found gobs of CW relics.
In 1977 Bounty Hunter introduced the Red Baron which was the first VLF motion discriminator. That was the biggest turning point for detectors, and every VLF model made today (including multifrequency) uses the same basic method.
1991 was another notable year when multifrequency was introduced in the Minelab Sovereign and the Fisher CZ5.
I was honored to meet Mr. Tom Dickey back in the 90's. He was truly a relic hunting icon in Atlanta. He found enough artillery shells to have his own arsenal. He has an early video entitled "Bombs in the Basement". Worth watching. An oldie but a goodie. As many of you know, Tom was the brother of James Dickey, author of the book and movie, "Deliverance".
 

Top Member Reactions

Users who are viewing this thread

Steve's Detector Rods

Latest Discussions

Top