Tennis Elbow Anyone?

This update may seem a little disjointed but when both John and I have a glass in our hand and write something, s**t happens.  Hope it all makes sense….

I will start with an addendum to my last post and hopefully answer a few questions that came my way. Then Dr. Howland will take over and talk tennis elbow (yeah I know, that’s what I said).

If I Had Known Part 2….

I wanted to follow-up and kind of respond to Ron’s comment to my last post “If I Had Known”.  Also a couple tekkies thought that perhaps I was being too critical of the pastime and I want to assure you that was not my intention at all. 

I realize we can all play the “what if” game and I didn’t mean for my last post to sound negative. Metal detecting has been very good to me but it probably affected my life more than most simply because of the route I took.

Not being satisfied with simplicity of it I decided to write about it, start a national organization, work for a manufacturer and move my family 1,500 miles. The latter was not an easy decision nor a popular one for my family, and let me throw this out there because I think it’s important for a few detectorists to hear.

I got so involved that I lost sight of a great many things, most importantly my family’s wishes and needs. Likewise the pure and simple enjoyment of being outdoors detecting was gone. It became my job and it ceased being fun.

A few pluses….

There’s no question metal detecting enabled me to do a lot of things I wouldn’t have if I had went in another direction. Number one would have to be travel. Thanks to my involvement I got to see a lot of the world I otherwise wouldn’t have and that’s something that cannot be erased from my mind. I met a lot of great people and became more appreciative of their way of life and customs. We even seriously thought about moving to France but for whatever reason it never materialized.

I also got to meet a helluva lot of detectorists here in the good ole USA and I cherish your friendship. Fay and I will never ever forget how you came to our aid big time when we lost our home in 2015. We will be forever grateful and humbled by your assistance and generosity.

Here in Texas homes are more affordable, there’s no state income tax, local taxes are reasonable, the people are friendly and the BBQ can’t be beat. Finally both my daughters met their spouses here, are happily married, have great jobs and gifted Fay and I three wonderful grandchildren.

No detector needed for this treasure….Texas BBQ (Photo by Fay Stout)


A few regrets….

Leaving the FMDAC and moving to Texas. The FMDAC was my baby and a very successful organization when I left but over the years it has evolved into what appears to be a small social group. What might have been has always bothered me, especially given my very short tenure at Garrett.

Leaving our woodland home of 2 ½ acres and moving to a small lot in a Dallas suburb as well as all my productive detecting sites in central New Jersey. Yes there are coins here, just not that many and anything older than a Mercury is cause for celebration. Likewise the soil is horrendous, the weather HOT and you best ask permission or you will be staring down the barrel of a shotgun.

Oh and you won’t find a decent Philly cheesesteak, Coney Island dog or pizza that drips olive oil all over your shirt (Anybody remember “only fifteen and fit for a queen”)?

On the left my street in New Jersey, on the right my street in Texas….yes I miss home.

So yes I’ll never know what would have happened had I not purchased that first detector but I still think about it and I still think of all my friends back east.  I wonder too what that old picnic grove looks like now. Are there still a few keepers there?


If  you love to cook have a look at the “STAPLES” link above. Trying to resurrect the “Poor Gourmand” section of the old website. Will see how it goes…..bon appetit.



Matters of balance, spirit levels…and more

by John Howland

Although there’s a lot of older blokes in this game of ours, advancing years ain’t necessarily the reason for a trip to health’s Sin Bin, oh no! “Why’s that?” you ask. Well for starters, older Tekkies have been at the game longer and have picked up a few pointers along the way, not least, they’ve learned the importance of balance and what follows ain’t about walking a straight line for a traffic cop…

A Pain in the… Arm?

As is my way, I often use a large diameter NEL ‘Tornado’ coil (on my ATPro) then shortening the lower shaft’s length so the detector ‘hangs’ balanced from my hand thus helping to reduce elbow strain caused by the larger coil’s weight. Sadly though, it’s not unusual to see people using larger than ‘standard’ coils without shortening their detector’s stem, making them lift and bear the coil’s weight for it to swing at the correct height above the ground.

Prolonged swinging an ‘unbalanced’ metal detector not only causes fatigue thus shortening hunting sessions, but is a sure-fire way of straining of your detecting arm’s elbow tendons. Therefore, if you’ve ever had any of the following symptoms: –

  • on the outside of your upper forearm, just below the bend of your elbow
  • when lifting or bending your arm
  • when gripping small objects, such as a pen
  • when twisting your forearm, such as turning a door handle or opening a jar
  • Do you find difficulty in fully extending your arm

And it’s ‘Yes’ to any of the above the chances are you may have what is colloquially known as ‘Tennis Elbow’ (medical, lateral epicondylitis) the result of strenuous over-use of the forearm’s muscles and tendons near the elbow joint.

‘Tennis Elbow’ can also be caused by: –

  • playing racquet sports – such as tennis, badminton or squash
  • throwing sports – such as the javelin or discus
  • using shears while gardening
  • using a paintbrush or roller while decorating
  • manual work – such as plumbing or bricklaying
  • activities that involve fine, repetitive hand and wrist movements – such as using scissors or typing
  • other activities that involve repeatedly bending the elbow – such as playing the violin

Treating the condition is a relatively simple business. The UK’s National Health Service (NHS) recommends the most important thing you can do is rest your injured arm and stop doing the activity that caused the problem. If you have suffered with this painful condition, you’ll find the NHS website most helpful: –


Late breaking news:

The Dallas Stud’s new book, “Identifying Metal Detecting Finds from Stone-Age Sites” is not selling well. Can’t imagine why. However, his recent work, “Merlots and Me,” is a huge success.


You’ve got the key to the vault…

But what’s inside? The Royal Mint has supplied data which will prove illuminating.

£1-coins   Facts and Stats

  • Over 600 million of the new 12-sided £1 coins have now been issued
  • Over 800 million round £1 coins have been returned – some of them will be melted down      and reused to make the new £1 coin.
  • There will be more new £1 coins than round pound coins in circulation by late July.
  • The Royal Mint will make 1.5 billion of the new £1 coins.
  • The Royal Mint has produced over 2.1 billion round pound coins since 1983 – that’s the same weight as nearly 6,000 elephants.
  • 25 different designs have appeared on the old pound coin from dragons to trees.
  • Over 1 billion new £1 coin have been produced
  • Consumers are being encouraged to spend, bank and donate their old pound coins before 15th October 2017.

The key to unlocking the vault is of course, is your metal detector.

My thanks to the Royal Mint for allowing the use of their material. For more information on all UK coins visit:


Late breaking news – An Apology

It has been pointed out to me by the publishers, that the word in the title should be “Harlots” and not “Merlots.” My apologies for any confusion or embarrassment caused.


Words of wisdom

I urge everyone to visit from which the below abstract is taken. Not only will you be astounded and delighted to read Ms Winkley’s Research Paper, but you’ll see it destroys and pigeon-holes the vile abusers and dealers in fact free anti-detecting data; the stock-in-trade of the moronic few, some of whom appear to have serious psychological issues, who to the chagrin of all level-headed archaeologists, incessantly pour scorn and personal abuse on the Portable Antiquities Scheme and those who maintain it.

This Research Paper is a real eye-opener.

Papers from the Institute of Archaeology

University College London 

Research Paper

The Phenomenology of Metal Detecting: Insights from a Unique Type of Landscape Experience

Author: Felicity Winkley

“[…] Unlike much of Europe, unchecked metal detecting is legal in this country and hugely popular amongst a large population, and it looks to remain so in both instances. Rather than alienating these thousands of hobbyists, we should acknowledge their contribution to date and find new ways to best work alongside them. The innovative Portable Antiquities Scheme database provides a resource of now over a million records, complete with deep zooming images and geo-spatial map data, that has so far been used in 87 PhD theses and 15 major research projects. This work would not have been possible without the cooperation of detectorists who, as a group, often feel marginalised and unappreciated. By contrast,…”



“Truth will rise above falsehood as oil above water.”

Miguel de Cervantes


I’ll see y’all in the bar



Getting ready for cooler weather….




Filed under Metal Detecting

11 responses to “Tennis Elbow Anyone?

  1. Bigtony

    Your street and you might look different but you are still the same and folks like that about you. Starting the National organization just helped to get folks juices flowing. That was an awesome idea and accomplishment. Thanks to you, Bruce and Joe (maybe a few others too) for that! Things are different these days and not only in metal detecting. Damn, the new cars have back up cameras and there are detectors with GPS on them, just crazy stuff. I could go on but you get the point.

    John, thanks for those numbers on your county’s coinage. Good to know for the folks who go there a few times a year looking for hoards and stuff and good local beer of course. I have to say that had thought that they would have collected old coins here in the US to melt down as well but nope didn’t happen.

  2. Bigtony

    You would need an 8 track player and someone who can hook it up for you. Mine are in a box and they are fun to look at and take a moment to remember those days.

    Yikes, I always thought they melted the worn out or mutilated coins

  3. BigTony

    Yes, I understand. They were in business to make money. That article is a good reminder of where our favorite detecting items went.

  4. BigTony

    I would bet that some folks didn’t sell their finds in hopes of creating a cashe of their own. Buried somewhere for a detectorists to find.

  5. Bigtony

    John, not enough battery power in a Model T or dash board space. You would have to put it on the floor and run wires under floor mats.
    Thanks for that tip. Any others?

  6. Hya Tony:
    Ah, I see. Just wondered how Stouty fitted an 8-track to Model T! He, he!

    Oh yeah, never pass a dry stone wall without checking. These are/were popular hidey-holes for valuables in bygone days here in UK. The tradition of dry-stone walling is evident in certain (mainly New England States) parts of the US too. Well worth a search with a large coil.

  7. BigTony

    Good idea for New England but here in New Jersey one must be careful when digging near stone walls, you never know what might turn up.

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