Just another day at the Amesbury house….

Just sitting here, getting skinnier by the day and frittering away to nothing. Who knows maybe I will be able to finally get up and down and that would be a good thing.  I think?


Was gathering up a few old TH’ing magazines to give to a friend and started paging through a few of the issues. How simple and straight forward the hobby used to be. Lots of good things coming out of the ground, no need for all the frills/accessories and no need to impress….


Waiting to hear all the good things (and bad) about the Minelab Equinox now that it’s finally getting out to the masses.


Be sure to add John Howland’s new blog to your reading list. It’s called Detecting & Collecting. It’s his vehicle for sharing his love of the archaeological community.


How has the pastime changed? Dominque Da Silva Ivy was asked about the equipment she uses to make her videos and her response?

“I use two Gopro Hero 5’s, a Lumix vlogging camera, and my phone (iphone 8 plus). Gopro on hat mount, second one on tripod, and lumix on mini tripod. Phone for photography. Happy hunting/filming!”

(Please…I’m a fan and love her videos but sheesh!)


Do yourself a favor and buy “Manhunt”, by James Swanson. Best book I’ve read in years and if you think you know everything about Lincoln’s assassination you’re dead wrong!


Why can’t Tesoro offer up a clone of the Troy? They did after all manufacture them initially. It was a smart looking detector, got rave reviews a few years back and they’re bringing top dollar on the used market.


When I see Silver Slinger Dominique & Relic Recoverist Jocelyn on social media I am reminded of the ole “Western & Eastern” column “Travels of the Gals” (Lucile Bowen and Betty Weeks). Might something like this happen again?


Be honest. Do you sometimes forget where you’ve set your various settings? Never happened with knobs, and switches. Ah progress old man, progress…


White’s what happened to all the repair centers?


Do you ever just grab your detector, hop in the car and go hunting? Is something so simple even possible today?




When you need to buy that NEW detector!



Filed under Metal Detecting

19 responses to “Rambling…


    I really like the receipt idea. Got to be worth $4.95. Mind you I never ask about the wife’s shoes, scarves, bags and various other items that appear on a fairly regular basis. Reciprocal denial I call it. Best, John

  2. Paul Southerland

    You covered a lot of ground and hit home on a lot or points with this one Dick. A lot of us have noticed how much things have changed and gotten complicated in the last few years. You now have to scroll through screen after screen to adjust and set up the newer detectors. Sure I use and test a lot of these newer machines but when I hit a hunt site I can be up and detecting with my White’s MXT while all my hunt buddies are trying to navigate multiple screens and get their machines set up. That’s why the simple knobs and setting MXT is still being manufactured after 15 years and is still popular. I’ve hunted with practically every brand out there.

    Years ago a hunting partner put me onto Troy Galloway’s machines. I got a Troy Shadow x5 and was amazed at how it finds deep silver. Even with the newer machines that are out I can go out with the x5 and do just as well if not better. Sad to say, I still use the x5, but that hunting partner passed away last year unexpectedly.

    Sure you can still simply hop in the car and go hunting. It’s all how you view it and you’ll be much happier if you do. If folks think you have to score big every time you go out then there will be a lot of disappointed detectorists. I quit all the photos and videos two years ago and live a much happier life in anonymity. While some of the videos being posted are nicely done there are those out there make the hobby look bad. The sheer volume of what’s being posted, good or bad, is what’s calling attention to us for those folks that want to limit what we can do and where we can go.

    • Hi Paul….

      You and I are from another era and unfortunately whatever we have to say pretty much falls on deaf ears. I wish I could be around years from now when the tekkies of today are saying similar things. Of course there’s a very big possibility the hobby won’t be around then.

      Thanks for taking the time to comment and to remind me I’m not alone. Keep turning those knobs and flicking those switches!

  3. Bigtony

    Forget my settings? Yes, yes and yes. One day the machine just reset itself to factory settings. I had to go back to the emails and posts to relearn the settings I had. After that I made a copy of the listing in the back of the manual. Then I filled in all of the settings and put a date on it. One issue with this machine is you can save that program in six provided slots but you can not label them, it’s only 1 to 6. So I do both – save it and record a paper copy.

    Detecting was a breeze in those early years compared to these days and I do remember them well and how much fun we had. No meters just sounds – man how things have changed. Next thing will be a picture on your phone of a target that you selected prior to walking in the park, no detector needed or headphones….yikes!

    • I love the MX Sport but like you Tony I have to constantly scroll up and scroll down, arrow left, arrow right, etc.. and it just has me missing the ole, but very “functional” knobs and switches.

  4. Ah, ‘Travels with the Gals’ and ‘Washington Update’ gave this hobby of ours some humour and gravitas. W&ET, in my view, made a BIG mistake in dropping the latter.

    Never mind Tesoro’s clone of the Troy, give us back the machine that opens up roman habitation sites – the Golden Sabre.

  5. Joe Patrick

    Coming from the age of “knobs and switches” metal detectors I still mostly prefer those kinds of user interfaces. But I do appreciate the advantages, in some cases, of the new digital detectors. I still use both and I think some of my detecting friends think me a fool for still using detectors that are, in some cases, 20+ years old.

    Why do I still use these old “dinosaurs”? Because they are the best and most effective “tools” for some locations. In my recent Q&A with Dick, I mentioned my respect for Tesoro metal detectors. No matter which detector you primarily use – in my case a Minelab Sovereign – I feel that every detectorist should have at least one Tesoro model in their arsenal – because they are inexpensive, simplistic to operate and lightweight. But mostly because, they just work well with excellent discrimination and sensitivity. I think too, that older analog metal detectors have smoother and more pleasing audio.

    Too each his own, but don’t ever think that old means outdated and no longer effective. I and too many others have scads of found items that prove otherwise!

    • Thanks Joe…you said it so well. Maybe today’s detectorists will understand twenty years down the road. It’s interesting that Troy Galloway came back from his first trip to the UK amazed at how well the Tesoro machines worked there. He decided to approach them about designing and producing his own line.

      Have a great weekend old man….

  6. David

    Just think of all the finds people are missing because they waste so much time filming everything

    • You said it David. Can’t imagine lugging all that stuff, setting it up, filming, etc.. Doesn’t leave much time for detecting IMO though I know I’m in the minority.

  7. Bob Sickler

    I’ve been saying for years that sophistication is simplicity. That’s one of the reasons I recently let all my menu driven detectors go and went back to my place of origin… Garrett. Some really good innovation and performance starting with the AT-Pro and more now with the AT-Max… All controls as tactile buttons in front of you with screen reference, simplified… Take the batteries out and you still have your settings preserved… Drive a distance and walk miles to a researched huntsite and it starts to rain in buckets… Keep on hunting! In tough mineral ground it goes about twice the depth of my old Groundhog. I think metal detector manufacturers have long been guilty for years of enticing the gadget oriented user. Many have now wised up and gone back to the “K.I.S.S.” methodology… “Keep It Simple Stupid”!

    “Travels of the Gals” started to wain when one of the gals passed. From personal experience, that sort of thing really takes away any heart you have to persevere… Some of the survivors never recover. It is wonderful we had the column as long as we did to be enjoyed.

    Jumping in the car and going detecting is not as easy as it once was. More public lands are now off limits to detecting. If you have to wonder why, you are part of the problem. Private landowners are refusing permission because some of us leave destruction and don’t share what we find with the owner. Private land is the last frontier in metal detecting folks… Hunt with intelligence, not greed or vanity.

    Dick… What I am most impressed with is your new will to drop weight, come back and start detecting again. I think us older detectorists have it in our blood and that is a good thing. I know I will keep at it for as long as I can, it’s part of who I always was. I love being the first person discovering and touching something someone lost so long ago. It’s not about the monetary value, it’s the right to know and enjoy our history first-hand.

    • Thanks Bob,

      So much to be said for the older detectors. You looked down and bingo, you knew precisely how it was set. I will always be a knob/switch/boobs guy.

      It was Lucile Bowen who passed away first. Betty Weeks carried on and was also the FMDAC president for a while.She passed on a few years ago.

      Down 25 lbs Bob….ten more to go.

      • Bob Sickler

        Alright Dick! 25 lbs., you beat me! I gained 5 lbs. over Christmas.

        Yes, when I cartooned that department head, I guess things were not good as it did not stay up in the magazine too long.

        Would you care to clarify, “… knob/switch/BOOBS GUY”? Talk about distraction in the field! 🙂

      • I worry that I will put it back on Bob. Time will tell…

        I thought travels with the gals lasted quite sometime…

        And no I will not clarify my statement. It’s been reiterated here many times and is self explanatory.

  8. Packrat

    Sorry Dick Betty was first to leave us and then Lucy. Both were close to me. Lucy sold me my first detector in 1971. I call Betty my treasure hunting mom. Helped me to be the hunter I am today.

    • Hi Larry, thanks for the correction. My bad. I know full well how much both of them meant to you. Great gals for sure who are missed by many.

      Hope all is well with you and your family in the great Northwest. Stay in touch.

  9. Interesting post Dick. I did load a coin program into my machine, and found coins with it. Not sure if it was a coincidence or not, but when I tried to save it, well, you know, I’m not so Tekkie… good luck with the diet, I haven’t been so lucky in that department this year. Wish I came with a factory re-set button.

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