Forget the Holy Grail!

Metal Detecting, or as some like to call it, treasure hunting, is not an exact science, nor is it a subject you need to have a degree to excel at. It’s a healthy outdoor activity that frequently turns into an addictive pastime, but if you want to make sure that happens you need four things….a goal, decent equipment, a plan and a basic knowledge of how to research. Capisce?


First off you bought a metal detector to find ‘something’.  Whether it’s coins, relics, gold nuggets, jewelry at the beach or uncle Buddy’s stash,  you had a reason for getting involved and as such you already have a goal.  Of course you may be an Indiana Jones wannabe, out to find the holy grail. If so forget it.  I’ve already found it!


Next, I am assuming you studied the various manufacturer catalogs, compared apples and oranges, and bought the best detector you could afford.  Whether or not you will bother to take the time to learn it’s features and capabilities is another story.  If that’s too much trouble for you don’t piss and moan about all the trash you are finding.


Next comes a plan. How are you going to go about achieving your goal?  Head down to the schoolyard, the beach, the gold fields or good ole uncle Buddy’s farm?   My guess is that you will do all four without any prethought whatsoever.  From what I’ve experienced over the years it’s usually open the box, turn that sucker on and out the door!  And don’t tell me I’m wrong.  I’ve not only seen it….I’ve done it myself!


Research should probably be the first on your list and not the last because to me it’s the most important. You can have all three of the above but if you don’t take the time to research you will be pissing in the wind and your detector will quickly wind up in the closet.  Understand too that the odds of finding a hoard, the Middleham jewel or uncle Buddy’s stash, are slim to none, so do yourself a favor and spend more time finding a place to take your detector than you do actually using it.  Depressing I know, but as Joe Friday would say, “just the facts, ma’am”….

You'all stay hear!

You’all stay tuned…you hear!

Now having said all this I confess that as of late I have not practiced what I just preached.  I find it more convenient to sit on my ass with a glass of wine and tell YOU all what to do.  Not so much because I want to but because it’s all I can do right now.  I am however sitting here with the holy grail, looking at houses in the South of France and planning my next move.  You’all stay tuned ya hear?




Filed under Metal Detecting

13 responses to “Forget the Holy Grail!

  1. wintersen

    I am very much like you Dick. Just sit on my arse with a glass of vino and write about the hobby. It’s something I do for my own enjoyment. If people enjoy what I write and make a favourable comment, then that’s a bonus.

    There’s some good advice contained therein. Keep up the good work … but there’s no need to apologise. Your back catalogue speaks for itself. Relax … have another glass of wine. You deserve it, Man!

    Der ya go!

  2. I’m with ya; no doubt about it! In my “perfect” world I would be out there swinging away in a secluded spot, the wind rushing through the trees, a vast expanse of blue sky, not too hot or too cold. Digging silver and civil war artifacts every few feet or so, cataloging each find so’s I can turn it over to local historical society guru’s, who will give me credit for its recovery. Yes, life would be perfect. Back to reality…yes, I’m retired and have a ton of “to do’s” to do. The weather has been hot and humid and I just don’t feel like detecting today, or tomorrow. So, I’m going to sit on my arse too, and think about my imaginary “perfect world”, knowing that I should be building that lemonade stand the grand-kids have been begging me for. “Do what you love – Love what you do!”

  3. Thanks Gary…

    I still have a full deck; I just shuffle slower now. ~Author Unknown

  4. Big Tony from Bayonne

    Yeah, I can’t get out today or tomorrow for that matter. And when I get out my time is limited, funny how we don’t make time for ourselves as we get older – to do’s or stuff or stressed out and had a few too many the night before. Dick – you hit the nail right on the head. Next time out don’t be satisfied with “Pissing in the Wind”. Next time fill up your goody bag!

  5. Bob K

    Just like my other hobby, has the same goal, plan, equipment and reseach. Just have to be at the right spot at the right time.
    Fishing at least I get to sit with this hobby. Wine NO but a coke and some JB Devil’s cut.
    Keep the humdity down in Texas PLEASE.

    • Bob I used to be an avid fisherman back in New Jersey. At one point we lived about fifty yards from a trout stream and I was up every morning before work. I think a lot of tekkies were and are fishermen….guess it’s the ole “you never know what you will come with” mentality.

  6. Oh Dick how right you are, research is key. It’s key to finding the “good stuff” which in turn motivates most to keep on pluggin-a-way. This year marks forty years since I bought my first detector. I was eight and a half years old. Funny how those half years mean so much when young and then again later in life – gulp! Even before my detector arrived in the mail, I asked my parents if they would “take me to the library so I can find the older areas in town, so I could find the older coins.” This coming from a kid who hated school, my folks nearly fell off their chairs!

    Back in the day, my secret to always having a spot to detect was simple; a map book of my local state county. This was for two reasons. First, it had all the parks and schools highlighted in yellow for each town. Instant metal detecting spots. Secondly, anytime we passed historic markers such “George Washington passed here to bring cannons to Ft Knox”, I would circle that spot in the map book. Instant metal detecting spots. Hint: The second one yields much older goodies.

    Lay your smart phone down and give a show of hands if you know what a map book is. Wait, that last sentence made it seem like I was complaining about my age. Dick I can hear your follow up to my banter now. “Dan, you’re not old. I’ve eaten cold pizza older than you!”

    All the Best and Keep on a Blogging,

    — Daniel Bernzweig

    • Dan, you’re not old. I’ve eaten cold pizza older than you!

      Thanks for the comment and please say hi to the family and everyone at the store.

  7. BigTony

    Map books? Now there is a good topic we need to speak more about!

  8. supernova1c

    Great advice Dick, research is key and adds so much to the experience.
    Regards James 🙂

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