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KirkS 01-10-2017 10:24 PM

I think I've decided...
**Heads up! I can be long-winded! :sorry: **

:newhere: I've decided to get into this hobby (obsession?), and have become blurry-eyed trying to figure out which machine to start off with.

I live in St Petersburg, FL, about 2 miles from Gulf beaches. I plan/expect to be hunting primarily beaches, and maybe some parks and schools. As for the beaches, I'll be hunting the dry sand, as I've learned the limitations of wet salt sand, and the required detectors to be truly successful.

Based on a recommendation from someone whose opinion I respect, I'm 99.99% decided on a Fisher F-22. I originally was going to go with a Tesoro Compadre, but the added benefit of a weatherproof machine should come in handy here, as pop-up storms are the norm. Also, a probable upgrade would be a high-end machine (ie., CTX3030, e-trac, etc.), and starting with a digital machine I would expect to be a smoother transition.

While the budget is essentially unlimited, I'm frugal. I could start off with a top of the line machine, but to be honest, I don't even know if I'm going to like metal detecting, so I'd rather start small, and I feel an initial approximate investment of <$300 is realistic and reasonable.


So now I need advice on secondaries.

Which coil; the 9" elliptical, or the 11" DD elliptical? I'm still learning coils, so I really haven't a clue here.

Which do I need more - a pinpointer (a good one) and digger, or a good sand scoop? I expect to hit the beaches first while it's cooler out, and the parks during the hotter months (hate the FL beaches during the summer), so I'm thinking of a scoop first.

Headphones. Necessary, or a nicety? Do 'normal' music headphones work as well on a MD? I can't see why they wouldn't.

If you have a better suggestion on a MD, my ears are open.

Thanks for the help! :urock:

Surf Master 01-11-2017 12:07 AM

to be honest
Your looking at a minimum of 800 than you need a scoop. Save your money , water proof machines cost more, Earl. Myers Detectors can point you in the wright direction, take a trip, he is close to you Florida Ave Tampa, happy hunting .

KirkS 01-11-2017 12:17 AM

The $300 refers to the machine only. I figure a good scoop or pinpointer will be an additional $150+/-, plus other accessories I'll need.

I have little desire to go into the water, so I don't think a waterproof machine is really something I need or would really benefit from. Although, if I do enjoy the hobby, it would be on my list.

Mud-puppy 01-11-2017 06:21 AM

Well...I dry sand a lot and use the 11"dd on the end of a F70...I also use a small bucket light dry sand scoop with about a 3' handle...Dry sanding is a specialty...You will get in shape if you are not already, you will find its a lot cooler to go early in the morning before Sun-up when theres no crowds and you wont get so overheated...

The only other item you will need is a finds pouch, even a cheap little nail apron from the Home depot is fine, thats all I use to this day...You have to be comfortable, loose shirt, shorts, barefoot is how I like to go about on the dry sand...Havnt stepped on any glass yet thankfully...easy 1000 miles of barefoot hunting on the doubt 400 per year when I add it all up on my standard beaches season...June/July/Aug

Then you work the towel lines and travel zones and the little private areas off to the prevailing downwind side from the beach entrance...You can fling a 12'arc with a fast recovery light weight F rig if you sort of stoop over and wide leg it and swing with your body...this is for the towel line, down and back, covering 24' of productive area fast....dig will be finding wallets and cash and cellphones...dope pipes, all sorts of things..

Its a lot of walking and swinging coil so you have to settle into a steady easy effortless ergonomic pattern or the dry sand will flat wear you out! I cant imagine attempting it with a heavier unbalanced rig or large heavy scoop of any sort...Good Luck and report back!

DIGGER27 01-11-2017 08:43 AM

1 Attachment(s)
Digging in dry sand is easy, wet sand is heavier so a cheap scoop might not last as long if you hit areas like that after high tide.

Since you are hitting land sites too a good hand digger and pinpointer makes much more sense.
A decent pinpointer will be invaluable on both land and at the beach, a digging tool with a scoop design like the Predator Raptor would work well in your sandy soil and scoop the sand out very well at the beach.

Before you spend money on a really good scoop see how things shake out first.
If you don't mind bending over you can get a very decent strong hand scoop for about $30 to start with if you spend a lot of time at the beach.

Attachment 372853

Coils...bigger usually gets a bit deeper.
The 9" is a strangely shaped concentric coil, the 11" is a DD coil.
Strengths and weaknesses for both.

The concentric has a bit sharper discriminating on abilities, problem pop tops that like to come in high and mimic coins are no issues with this one, I find hunting with concentrics for jewelry seems a bit more efficient but I find that stuff with both kinds.

The bigger DD coil should get a little deeper but the advantage is the scanning field is much wider at the deeper areas near the edge of the scanning field.
Easier to notice the deep ones with a coil like this with a little less overlapping.
The thinner scanning field running up the center of this coil makes it a bit easier to snake through trash.
A little more of a problem regarding pop tops on this one but there is a technique that makes most of them pretty easy to identify using this coil.

If you do hunt in the wetter sand some it could be way more mineralized in some spots than the dry stuff.
Salt is a mineral, so is the black stuff you see in some of the sand.
Not that this would really work great at all in the water or wet problem sand but you have a better shot at finding a few more good targets in that environment with a DD coil.

H Desert Digger 01-11-2017 12:31 PM

I give you 9 months tops before your butt is in the surf...smiles.

I mean that in a friendly way. I envy you for your location, you don't have a spare room over the garage do you? :D

I've never owned a F 22, but I have had an F2, very good and reliable machine.

Best of luck my friend...


KirkS 01-11-2017 02:23 PM


Originally Posted by H Desert Digger (Post 2703959)
I give you 9 months tops before your butt is in the surf...smiles.

I mean that in a friendly way. I envy you for your location, you don't have a spare room over the garage do you? :D

I've never owned a F 22, but I have had an F2, very good and reliable machine.

Best of luck my friend...


I sort of figure that too, assuming (and I know better then to assume :) ) I like detecting. At that point, I'll be looking into a 'premium' machine. As for a spare room, we have a 4th bedroom available, but you'd have to share it with about 400 cameras. Seriously.

As for the coil, I'm going to go with the 9" elliptical. My next machine I'll probably go with a larger coil. After all, it seems it's a requirement to have multiple machines in this hobby!

Digger27 - thanks for the info. It was the Church of Compadre thread that had me initially going with the Compadre, and at some point down the road I may get one of those as well.

Back to pinpointers - I'm aware that the cheap PP's would give me more headaches then their worth, so I was thinking of the Nokta RS, the nokta waterproof, Garrett AT Pro, or the White's TRX. There is a $50 spread between them, which is insignificant.

Would love some direction on those. I'm pulling the plug later today or tomorrow for everything, just want to make sure I have my pull tabs all lined up for the purchase.


DIGGER27 01-11-2017 03:13 PM

I live in both the Fisher and Tesoro worlds...lots of great things in my collection from both, never regretted a second spent with any of them.

I lived in Fla. for several years.
Landlocked in Lakeland for a year but mostly stayed in Tampa, Oldsmar, Clearwater and right on the water in Dunedin.
Close enough to beaches of all kinds everywhere.
Didn't do this hobby at all during that time.
THAT I regret.

KirkS 01-11-2017 11:42 PM

Well, I was all set to buy the Fisher F22, when I decided to check and see what was lurking about in the local pawn shops. After 4 shops not having anything, I hit a shop that had 3, all sold by the same person. All 3 were White's; Prizm 6T, Coinmaster GT, and a Treasure Pro. All three were priced the same.

Research told me that the GT was the newer version of the 6T, and both were good machines, and the Treasure Pro was an even newer machine (2015) with also good reviews it seems. They all have a 'Beach' mode, which should be helpful.

After comparing the feel of the GT and the Pro, I decided on the Pro. It's lighter, has a big back-lit display, takes (2)AA vs (8)AA, and it also had a larger 10" DD coil, vs a 9" concentric on the GT.

So now I just have to get the pinpointer, scoop, digger, and pouch, and I'm all set. :grin:

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