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Best in aluminum

Picketwire

Active member
Monte has a nail board test. Here is a test for searching in pull tabs. Place 4 tabs of your choice in a square and put a dime or coin of your choice in the middle where the diagonals cross. Gradually make the square smaller until you can no longer detect the coin. What kind of results do you have? What works best for you?
 

Ronstar

Well-known member
Oh man, it just started raining here…… ok, its on my Roun-to-it list for tomorrow…..
 

IDXMonster

Well-known member
A small concentric coil raised a couple inches off the ground will work best. Since concentric coils are not offered for the bulk of machines made today, you’d have to use something older, or one of the few new ones that they’re offered on. I haven’t run the test, but I know where this is going…
 

JCR TX

Active member
Good idea for a test. I have some 3D setups in my test garden with pull & square tabs and they are tough. I have found lower kHz will be better on a test like this.
 

Monte

Well-known member
Monte has a nail board test.
That is correct, I do have my Nail Board Performance Test, and I have been using this 4 over 27 years to evaluate different makes and models of detectors as well as different sizes shapes and types of search coils. Some detector and quail combinations can handle the ferrous nail challenges and others do not. They either qualify as passing to satisfy me and my wants and needs for hunting very dense iron nail contaminated sites, such as ghost towns, working around building rubble and renovation sites, etc. My Nail Board Test is not something that anyone can just randomly guess at by playing a different types of nails at different orientations to a coin. It is based on an actual, in-the-field encounter where, in May of '94, while searching a ghost town and evaluating a couple of detectors, I made my way up the little hill to the Old School site where you could look around and see an unbelievable scattering of nails a various sizes and shapes. I looked at the ground find a clear spot to ground balance, and right there a couple feet in front of me, laying on top of the ground like I have encountered many many times over the years I've hunted, was an Indian Head Cent surrounded by 4 iron nails of different sizes and orientations.

I evaluated the two detectors I had with me, ask three guys to check their detectors on this layout and a good friend of mine to check her Tesoro .... mainly to show the guys how a good detector with a 7" concentric coil can handle the challenges of Ghost Town hunting. I was taking notes and had my clipboard with me so I used a piece of paper to press on top of that display and Mark their exact orientation. I then picked up the Indian Head and nails and used them on a piece of cardboard from the back of my notepad to mark that exact orientation and glue them in position. I then had an exact specimen of an off-the-field encounter.

I contracted with a sign maker several years ago to make an exact copy of my Nail Board. Exact. I've been made a 'kit' using that exact layout and including for nails of the proper size to be secured in position so that others would be able to have an exact replica of what I encountered and what I use to evaluate metal detectors. That way, if anyone is using in exact position Nail Board set-up, then we can be great distances apart around the globe and their test results should be the same as my test results if we are using the same detector, and coil, and settings. The four different sweep routes are marked on the board so we can converse or discuss on a forum the results we get and it will all be done using an exact same position test setup.


Here is a test for searching in pull tabs. Place 4 tabs of your choice in a square and put a dime or coin of your choice in the middle where the diagonals cross.
This would be a fun test, for an individual to do just to learn something about their detector and their coil and their settings and their sweep speed.

However it is not a test as described that could be used by different people in different locations to make a fair comparison. Why? Because of this:

1.. You are asking people to take for pull tabs of their choice, and pull tabs have different alloy conductivities, and one person might use a Ring-Pull Tab with or without the Beaver Tail, or the 'Tail' could be bent in various positions, and then it's how you lay that Tab out in relationship to the coin. What you might do with for various shaped Ring-Pull Tabs will likely be different from what others will do.

2.. Some people might use a modern rectangular Pry-Tab, and again, those can be slightly different sizes and shapes and conductivities. I have one in my demonstration kit for my seminars that looks no different from others, but produces a rock-solid VDI read-out like a modern US Zinc Cent.

3.. With the different Pull- Tabs and no clearly marked and consistent size, shape, and type or uniform and consistent placement with relationship to the coin, all chests are not going to be consistent to make a fair comparison result.

4.. You suggest using a dime or a coin of an individual's choice to do the test oh, and right there you've added to the inconsistency that people are going to experience making that particular test invalid four different people, in different locations, to compare the results, of a different layout.


Gradually make the square smaller until you can no longer detect the coin. What kind of results do you have? What works best for you?
And with this it is going to be away for an individual to test various test samples that they select, with the whatever coins they select, using whatever detector and coil they choose just to find out how it may or may not perform. But at that point this type testing means very little because it is not going to result in a fair comparison that two or more individuals could make and then discuss.

Also to be remembered is that the nail Board Test is done using Iron or Ferrous trash and many detectors in use today we'll produce in audio "low-tone" or what we call an "Iron Audio Tone", and a higher tone for the higher-conductive desired target.

Your test is based on people using their variable discrimination control to reject the unwanted aluminum trash that shares conductivity levels with various assortments of desired coins, trade tokens, a lot of good artifacts and silver and gold jewelry.

It's no more than a suggestion for individuals to tinker with for their own interest and satisfaction, but it is nothing that would be uniform or consistent for two or more individuals to use for comparison from random locations.

Monte
 

Picketwire

Active member
I have noticed consistencies no matter what kind of tabs I use, coins I use, and what detector i use for it. I am sure your test is completely consistent as to where the pieces are but I have never had that exact same scenario. I just thought it would be fun to see how different individuals would respond. I do it just for my own benefit but it was an eye opener for me.
 

Picketwire

Active member
Also, I said nothing about discrimination level any more than I said about size, type and shape coils, frequency, response time, etc. Just try and make whatever detector you want do better. Any results?
 

Picketwire

Active member
Here are a couple of my observations. When using my T2 and the Cors Shrew and the 5 inch DD coil, the shrew could detect a copper penny with a smaller square because the outside edge of the 5 inch coil would pick up the tabs before the nose of the coil and not respond to the penny. The shrew's outside edge was narrower and the sharp nose of the coil would still detect the penny with the same size square.

My Deus with the 11 inch x35 does not do well but does better as I raise the coil higher shrink its footprint. I can identify aluminum much better with this detector than most of my others but I know that I would have to dig at least one of the tabs before I would get a signal that I would dig. I also noticed that the tabs were much louder than the coin at 18 kHz but were more even at 8 kHz. Does this mean the Shrew coil is better than the 5" or that the Deus is not a good detector in aluminum? No, absolutely not, but it helps me learn.

I usually run no or very little discrimination but I do cherry pick at times like most people. I don't see anything wrong with that. That is why they have discrimination mode. Even with my detectors that do not give a good signal, I know what a coin sounds like if it is compromised. I am not trying to sell anything to anyone or make recommendations on detectors. This is just a chance to listen to what your detector is saying and you can listen to it at any time you want, even multiple times. I was hoping for insight from the more experienced members here not a critique about how this test tells nothing of value.
I would also ask IDX where you think this is going and why would I need an older detector to do this?
 

IDXMonster

Well-known member
Here are a couple of my observations. When using my T2 and the Cors Shrew and the 5 inch DD coil, the shrew could detect a copper penny with a smaller square because the outside edge of the 5 inch coil would pick up the tabs before the nose of the coil and not respond to the penny. The shrew's outside edge was narrower and the sharp nose of the coil would still detect the penny with the same size square.

My Deus with the 11 inch x35 does not do well but does better as I raise the coil higher shrink its footprint. I can identify aluminum much better with this detector than most of my others but I know that I would have to dig at least one of the tabs before I would get a signal that I would dig. I also noticed that the tabs were much louder than the coin at 18 kHz but were more even at 8 kHz. Does this mean the Shrew coil is better than the 5" or that the Deus is not a good detector in aluminum? No, absolutely not, but it helps me learn.

I usually run no or very little discrimination but I do cherry pick at times like most people. I don't see anything wrong with that. That is why they have discrimination mode. Even with my detectors that do not give a good signal, I know what a coin sounds like if it is compromised. I am not trying to sell anything to anyone or make recommendations on detectors. This is just a chance to listen to what your detector is saying and you can listen to it at any time you want, even multiple times. I was hoping for insight from the more experienced members here not a critique about how this test tells nothing of value.
I would also ask IDX where you think this is going and why would I need an older detector to do this?
You wouldn’t necessarily need an “older detector”….just one with a small concentric. Because of the cone shaped field that they emit, it would stand to reason that it would be the most precise in this test…just raising it enough so the end of the “cone”(much like your shrunken footprint) would be interacting with the coin only. A DD coil with a “long blade” shaped field would be picking up at least part of or one of the tabs no matter what angle you were at. This is where I think this is going…but it would have to be tested by someone.
 

Picketwire

Active member
For me, the "long blade" works pretty well when swinging parallel to the sides of the square but gets worse as you approach parallel to the diagonal. Sometimes I can hear a change when the tip or very back of the coil pulls away from the coin. But the best setup I could come up with was with a concentric coil though not a very small one. I would imagine the IDX would be one of the better performers although I have never owned a Whites detector, just their pinpointer.

I would like to say that the title should have had a question mark after it or maybe have been called "test in aluminum" because I do not say that I know what is best for everyone or even myself. I do know what worked best for me amongst my 12 detectors and I don't know how may coils.
 

JCR TX

Active member
It is also interesting on a Co-located test like this to see the difference lower sensitivity/gain has on coil footprint & separation.
 

Picketwire

Active member
I have one combination set up that can detect a dime with the tab square touching, tabs on top of the coin and a tab above not touching the dime held up by a cough medicine dose container (about a 1" gap) all at the same time. I would have dug this signal every day. When the dime was removed the dime signal was gone. When a tab above was raised to the top of an aerosol paint cap (about ½" higher), it was no longer detectable. Does this make it my number one usage detector? No, but when tabs are an extreme problem you can bet it is the combo I use.

Would I have known about this without garage floor testing? No. I got the idea for testing by watching Mr. Keith Southern's videos over and over and it finally soaked through to my brain that it was a great idea and that I could do it myself. Thanks for your replies but I was hoping for more.
 

Monte

Well-known member
Would I have known about this without garage floor testing? No. I got the idea for testing by watching Mr. Keith Southern's videos over and over and it finally soaked through to my brain that it was a great idea and that I could do it myself. Thanks for your replies but I was hoping for more.
Do you first check to make sure there is no rebar used in making the cement garage floors? It would be quite difficult to try using an assortment of non-ferrous Pull & Pry Tabs if you're dealing with all of the Iron rebar used for a lot of the garage floors.

Monte
 

Picketwire

Active member
Very true! I should have mentioned it. There is no rebar but there are two spots where I can get iron tone in all metal. They sound like deeper small iron. Oh, and I also have internet close and neighbors farther and a Freezer in there too so depth is not super but the sounds transfer outside where I hunt.
 

Picketwire

Active member
To Monte. If I offended you in any way I am sorry. If I haven't read every post you have made on the major forums and some not so major in the last 4 or 5 years, I bet I am close. More than one detector I own has been because of your recommendations.

I see on a different forum you take someone to task and say that testing using 4 tabs and unspecified coin is not useful to compare detectors and the results are not valid for anything. What I was hoping to get at was what that you should test every way you can to make yourself better. Even your post on the other forum agreed with that. I am not trying to have you compare your results to mine, I never did ask or imply that one detector was better than another or that this was the ultimate test for aluminum. I was hoping others would chime in on what works best with their detector and some recommendations like lower frequency and a concentric coil line up with what I have found. I was also hoping for tips from you on what you found best for aluminum but instead got a lecture on how what I was doing was totally wrong and implications that I did not even know if I had rebar in my floor.

Not everyone can afford new detectors every time a new one comes out. I think the trick is to get what you have to do the best it can and if it doesn't how to compensate. Example: If my detector does not pass your nail board test, what can I do to compensate with the one I have, or see if another one I have is better for the job. Again, I apologize if I offended you.
 

Picketwire

Active member
While this test is flawed for comparison purposes, if your detector does not detect it no matter what as some of mine do, it does tell you that if you want everything good, you better dig the tabs. No? The inspiration for this test was not a perfect square but close in an actual situation where I knew something was between harsh sounding items. I turned up the discrimination which I almost never do to knock out tabs and got a clear smooth signal but nothing from the tabs. One day while searching my garage floor with junk scattered randomly, with another detector I could not get a good signal where a coin was between a couple of tabs. When I turned up the disc on this one I still could not detect the coin even though both the original detector and this one used concentric coils. So I tested with different detectors, coils, and everything I could think of. When I am not in a hurry I pretty much dig everything and would probably dig up the aluminum and put it in the trash. A big plus I know better how all my detectors act near one tab and also even better how to tell there is something else there. And that is what I think is best in aluminum, knowing your detector.
 

Ronstar

Well-known member
Hopefully I didnt miss this…… but square tabs (as you call them) bounce 1-2 numbers above nickels for me (F75). Altho tabs do come up 3/4 of the time the other 1/4 time are nickels, both modern and older. Not fully found a way to ID tabs unless higher numbers show but other wise I dig, 25% chance nickels under those conditions is worth it.
 

Picketwire

Active member
Here is a tip. When trying to get a signal with a DD coil, tip the nose of the coil down. The tip is more sensitive and the rest of the coil is higher than the tabs. This works especially well with small pointed ones. iWith the tip of a DD coil, you can detect a quarter next to a chain link fence. That does not work for the sides of the coil.
 
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