Monday, 24 March 2014

"Everybody's Lying": Some Detectorists' Opinions on Deep Detecting

A newbie detectorist "who appears to know so little he doesn’t realise how little he knows" claims that he is being lied to constantly by archaeologists (except ones who say what he wants to hear who are the only truthful ones) says that a new breed of metal detectors "won’t go that deep":
Anyway, infinitely more experienced detectorists (than someone who has only ever found two recordable finds in their life!) have settled the depth issue entirely in Farmer Brown’s favour. (“Hello there, Neil Jones here aka slow_n_low, i can now get 24″ on the same small coins as i know the machine inside out and a lot lot deeper on the larger finds”).
There was a video made on the Corfe rally showing Neil Jones demonstrating what he'd learnt, he was filmed digging an enormous hole in pasture to extract a single Roman coin from some considerable depth. Unfortunately, with Gary Brun's mysterious parting of the ways with Minelab, that video went with him, and cannot now be found on the internet. But here's a thread about it: 
Thread: Slow-n-Low GPX 5000 Depth Advantage Video, and here are some of the comments made at the end of October 2010:

great video that machine looks awesome,you certainly had to dig deep neil

Good video. I love the way Gordon stands there chatting while Neil spends 10 minutes digging.

Very impressive!

Impressive, that machine definately does its job!  Just have to hope you can do some searching between digging those craters!

Very impressive depth!!

unbeliveble depth,,,,,great video.....

Well done lads - impressive that.

Interesting approach as todays finds become more rare at the 6 to 10 inch depth, this may open a whole new style to coin and releic hunting? Well done boys.

Get used to digging deep holes boys [...].

Now that was impressive

very impressed wouldnt mind a go on one to try on our never been ploughed pasture land we've got, we've had a few deep roman but i reckon theres loads more there but out of reach of the se or etrac so this machine looks as if its capable of finding the deep ones,it would be interesting to have a bash on one

Weve got some pasture that has had loads of shallow finds on it, mostly bronzes and brooches so we're getting to the stage now where we need to investigate deeper so The GPX hopefully is going to be our answer. I think more than a few others on the forum are thinking the same way also.

we have alot of untouched pasture and theres alot of goodies we think that are just out of our reach so it would be interesting to see what the GPX is like so yeah you will be getting an invite soon mate and poor old dave doing all your digging i bet hes knackered after being out with you,digging them 2ft+ deep holes

I do not understand why digging a hole, say two feet deep, poses any threat to anything, provided it is properly filled in as that hole was.

Loved the vid, great finds and just goes to show the power of the new GPX's and what they are capable of - Awesome!

Well done. Clearly shows the advantage.

Neil proved beyond all doubt in the film that the new GPXs are capable of discrim far deeper than the few inches your suggesting. I havent used mine more than an hour at the moment but the few good finds Ive had like a nice roman brooch were well down below normal Explorer depths. Time will tell but I think we are maybe on to a real winner here.

Is this all lies? Gary Brun responds: "Do people really belive I would make à video to mislead folks??? Do you thinking I would post it to mislead my friends??? Minelab dont own me.".

I also think they may be of use on fields that have produced hoards, I am lucky enough to have found two hoards in the past, so am tempted to buy one to use on those particular fields and go over previously productive ground. Yes, they are very expensive machines but I think that the investment may be worthwhile for some detector users. Has anyone used one to locate deep stray coins from previously found hoards with success?

I would suggest it has two places in the UK market. 1. Good,heavily detected sites. 2. Known hoard sites where there maybe stragglers/more coins etc below normal depth but still within plough soil (in case this gets C&P elsewhere).

I would also put a third place on your list... 3. On sites that have only been shallow plowed. I have several sites, one of which has a Roman bath house, which for various reasons are only allowed to shallow plow. I don't think the plow has gone more than six inches on some sites. The bath house site has a restriction on deep plowing because of the archeology. Some sites have very chalky soil and some have been pasture and never been plowed in living memory!.
(omegamike, Rochester, Kent: 02-11-2010, 11:29 AM #65).
The site is protected from deep ploughing, but not deep artefact hunting and hoiking? Has the Kent FLO contacted Omega Mike about this post and this site?

as for sensitivity
"You couldnt use it on the rallies Whiggs theres too much interference to other tecterists, you need a wide berth", and "Yep and quite a wide berth from anything metallic on your body. First thing I noticed I just happened to leave the wrong boots on first time I used mine. Two metal lace eyelets sounded off big time, . Minelab even warn in the handbook about carrying loose change in your pocket and about keeping the battery pack well behind your back".
I think Andy Baines, the man who accuses myself and Nigel Swift of "lying" over this really has not been following the discussion on the detecting forums properly, and I bet he's never learnt how to use for artefact hunting the GPX 5000 or any related machine. But he seems to think that those with far more experience than him are all lying or misled too. It does not occur to him to read around the subject or find out whether he could be wrong.


P2Pinvested said...

You see the problem with your argument is Paul, how many people have spent over 4 grand on a metal detector? I would say probably the same percentage as there are of people driving a Ferrari compared to a 4 door hatchback

Paul Barford said...

You see, this is the problem with your obvious inability to focus your thought. You said we were "lying" because we say there IS such a detector (you say it is not possible) and when we show there is, you switch to whether people "have" them. And yes, there are people in your vicinity who do have them , and use them in precisely the situations described at the bottom of the post(and why not get your new pal "Steve" to comment on that kind of use of an archaeological site?).

If you look at the thread, you will see people pooling together to get one to share, loan for a small fee and so on.

These detectors do exist, and therefore it in in no way wrong of those of us who care about the preservation of sites to point that out, and what it means for the heritage debate.

Paul Barford said...

You wrote incredulously: "Apparently the latest metal detectors now reach 15 inches below the depth of a plough! By my workings out that around 25--27 inches, please let me know which model of detector this is"

As Nigel said "It’s a problem, blogging. Anyone can claim they are knowledgeable and responsible. But it’s all downhill, daily, from then on if they aren’t!"

How about first finding out about something and only then blogging about it?

The answer to your question was right in your face on a metal detecting forum, you seem not to have done very much research on your new hobby if you did not come across any of the discussion on the "Depth Advantage" which has been going on for three years at least.

Oh go on, see if you can get your new friend "Steve" to bail you out, or maybe genial Dave Connolly will jump in on your behalf again.

How far did you get with reading Drewett's book?

P2Pinvested said...

Im up to chapter 2 "what is an archaeological site? How is it formed and transformed" I ended up having a busy weekend with not much sit down time.

I still dont see how you make a mountain out of a mole hill as you have done. So a handful of guys talk about sharing one, a drop in the ocean compared to the other 8000 or so detectorists using bog standard detectors.

Paul Barford said...

But such a machine exists doesn't it? Say "yes Paul, it does, I am sorry for once again calling Nigel a liar"

Can you do that?

P2Pinvested said...

Yes such a machine does exist, its a machine that is used for gold prospecting and as such is very sensitive to small items (gold nuggets for example) it is also used for hoard hunting by the more unscrupulous detectorist. However this is a tiny tiny minority of people and in no way does that make a basis that pas needs to employ new advice for finders as Nigel is implying. It really appears that straws are being clutched to make a status.

Paul Barford said...

You forgot your manners and forgot to say "I am sorry for once again calling Nigel a liar"

So, if someone offered you a GPX500 or similar machine for free, you'd turn it down then?

Why would you label "hoard hunting" perfectly legal) unscrupulous? Would you say that somebody who goes out with such a machine to look for artefacts is without scruples?

Anonymous said...

Oh dear. It's not just a handful sharing, a lot have been sold. And it's not just Minelab that are producing them. Mr Baines really doesn't know how little he knows. Every detectorist but him has known about deep detectors for 3 or 4 years.

That's not the biggest problem though. From a position of 100% ignorance he states falsehoods as facts -

"how many people have spent over 4 grand on a metal detector? I would say probably the same percentage as there are of people driving a Ferrari". No. Lots have.

"Most people record". No.

"Nigel's a liar". No (as he now knows).

"I am able to tell other detectorists what Best Practice is". No, he's only ever found two finds and he is yet to get to Chapter two which explains what an archaeological site is! He's actually one of the least informed detectorists I've come across and I've come across thousands.

He's SO familiar. Not knowing, then denying, then minimising then abusing. He should spend ten years in an amateur archaeology society and get a lot of unselfishness, knowledge and manners under his belt, then we can talk. (What he doesn't understand, inter alia, is that there ARE detectorists like that who we DO talk to and his nonsense is of no value compared with what they say. Best Practice indeed! Us telling lies indeed! We were looking at these issues when he was sucking his pencil in GCSE retakes and there are NO, repeat NO silly insincere platitudes of his we haven't heard hundreds of times and that haven't been shown to be nonsense.)

So that's me done with him. Like Mr Stout he's utterly clueless and I won't be wasting any more time reading his silliness. Give me a good nighthawk to talk to every time, at least they have some knowledge and sincerity.

P2Pinvested said...

No I have no need to have a gpx5000 or 4500 in my arsenal. Im fine digging to around the 8-10 inches my £180 detector is capable of going.

As far as im concerned anyone who is using one is going from the detectorists zone and into the archaeologists zone. A detectorist shouldn't be going out there was to dig up a hoard. If one is mistakenly found then the professionals should be called in. All in my opinion though

Paul Barford said...

As readers will know, I normally try not to allow a guest on my blog to criticise another through the blog's comment system, but I let Heritage Action publish that comment above as Mr Baines has directed a constant barrage of extreme nastiness and insult towards us both since he began his so-called "responsible detecting" blog and I for one have had enough of it. Let Mr Baines taste his own medicine.

I initially deleted his reply to Heritage Action.

But that's unfair. Mr Baines sent a comment in reply to the above criticism .

He questioned HA's opinion that most people do not record, he seems to be claiming he passed his GCSE's first time, and questions whether Minelab have actually sold all that many GPX5000s.

He's also not very worried that HA will not be reading his blog. That's about it, without the unpleasantness.

Congratulations on the GCSEs Mr Baines.

Anonymous said...

"questions whether Minelab have actually sold all that many GPX5000s"

"Minelab GPX 5000" uk

gets you 126,000 results.


People should look at Google using that precise search term and see just how frequently artefact hunters in Britain are "going from the detectorists zone and into the archaeologists zone" as Mr Baines describes it".

But then again, I'm a liar apparently, according to the insistent chanting from the cheap seats.

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