Detectorist Suckers

More Money Than Sense

in 2011 I compiled a short blog post that received a lot of attention and deserves a reprise. In those days my original blog had nearly 2000 subscribers and comments left on posts usually reached the giddy 30’s. Not so today: I’m fortunate to get 4 of 5. This is how it started:

I believe that for many detectorists the act of buying a new machine far outweighs the thrill of actually participating in the hobby.

John Winter November 2011

And continued … that’s the impression I get from looking at the various detecting forums, (not so many about now), talking to people in the field and keeping my eyes and ears open. If you regularly visit online hobby (sport?) sites then you’ll be very familiar with the threads extolling the virtues of one make of detector over another. They usually run for several pages, becoming increasingly vitriolic and personal before an enlightened and increasingly frustrated moderator pulls the plug. Has it changed?

The machines being discussed (I use that word lightly) are rarely the reasonably priced models, but high-end machines costing well over a thousand pounds – and more!

For the guys with all the latest gear (but little idea?) it’s as though when they do venture into a muddy field they have to hold their head up high by sporting the latest and the most expensive equipment; when we all know that all you need to find treasure is enthusiasm, a reasonably priced proven detector and a spade.

But, of course that’s not true, because they have to turn up looking like a cross between a soldier on active service and an astronaut … that’s if you can see them in all that camouflage. In addition to the fancy dress costume (don’t forget the poncy wellies) they’ll have the latest wireless and noise-cancelling headphones, fingerless gloves from John Lewis, the most expensive pinpointer, a vehicle that doubles as a hotel if it spots with rain … and the ability to talk for hours about the merits of the Deus High Frequency Elliptical Coil. Incidentally, to buy that coil today would cost more than I paid for my first machine.

This simply means that every button or crotal bell they find has cost approximately £1m. It doesn’t seem to matter though. For so many detectorists the thrill of buying a new hobby-related gadget far outweighs the thrill of actually swinging the coil. I exaggerate.

© This has been another tongue-in-cheek production on behalf of detector retailers everywhere! :-)


Judging by the results the quiz was comparatively easy, and that puts me in a dilemma. Although no-one achieved maximum marks, there were 3 entries with 19 points.

I’m gonna leave you all in suspenders and give the result next time. It’s been a difficult day. Had a fall and am in great pain but the hospital said the X-Ray doesn’t show anything amiss. Keep taking the pills. Results next time.

21 thoughts on “Detectorist Suckers

  1. Couldn’t have said it better John, especially the time spent online. No one wants to read or think. It’s all about what the others are using and finding, and by golly if Jim Bob found “that” with “that detector” it has to be the best and I’m a gonna buy me one.

    Anymore I write my blog for myself….

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have spent many hours using e-trak, deus and ctx with good results but to this day my best finds were with my first detector.. the excellent Euroace… and if I’m honest I felt more free and unburdened to enjoy the chase.
      There’s alot to be said for spontaneously having an hour or so with the basics too.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. “If you regularly visit online hobby (sport?)”.. Let us go highbrow John and use my favourite word here… avocation LOL.

    And ofttimes, I come off from detecting looking like I was rolled in a mud puddle and left to dry out!!.. But still, after 50 years of detecting, I still enjoy the thrill of the chase, as it were.. It is not the having; but the getting…

    But in many regards you are correct.. too many people buy a detector and expect, and that is the word here, to strike it rich; They have been watching Too many you tube videos


    Liked by 1 person

  3. All very true John i always wondered why a majority of detecterists wear camo (sorry couldnt spell camourflage) Maybe its hard wearing … I remember once i was detecting at a rally and i wanted to relieve myself so i decided to go by a bush it wasnt till i finished that i realised it was a fellow detecterist on all fours with his pinpointer trying to locate a ring pull ……..

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Not sure of the £ to $ conversion but a new gold machine will probably cost more than £4000.
    I guess Minelab have an advert booked in The Searcher for the newest Minelab.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I have used the same detector since upgrading a year after starting this hobby which has been a few years now never updated it never change anything really which means I know it and trust it .. come to think of it I have probably worn the same clothes as well!!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Hi John ~ Metal Detecting has a lot of similarities with Fishing!
    Apart from the anticipation, participants in both hobbies are avid collectors of equipment, camo clothing and mail order under a pseudonym!
    It’s part of the attraction, then displaying your gear to all and sunder in miserable weather.
    Happy days!!

    Swift recovery from your fall ~ Paul

    Liked by 1 person

  7. John I have to agree that dressing in camouflage to go detecting has always puzzled me. Do they think they are just going to sneak up on some unsuspecting gold stater or something?

    I think that going forward there should be new attire rules that detectorists who wear camouflage normally have to adhere to…..

    1) If you are out in a pasture you have to dress like a cow
    2) A forest you have to dress like a deer (complete with antlers)
    3) Beach detecting, you must wear a budgie smuggler (no suntan lotion allowed)
    4) If you scuba detect, you must wear a shark outfit
    5) Schoolyard, one of those young schoolgirl outfits……then likely followed with the police putting you into handcuffs. On the bright side you can say you found a nice set of cufflinks

    LOL……..I can’t wait for the snow to melt here, and get back at it!

    Sorry to hear about the fall, get well soon.

    Liked by 2 people

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