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There have been polls on different sites, for “best dealers” and what detector you’re using, your favorite coil, what’s your favorite pick or accessories, and ect. What about paid lessons on detecting w/ the various new detectors? Seems more people are getting into it. Prices vary quite a bit, which must be taken into account, as free lessons with purchase. Maybe a poll, is too political, let me put it another way.

You pay for a lesson; what do you expect for your money? Just check your settings, be taken to a good area, and turn you loose on your own? The “teacher” wear a splitter for the headphones and listen to what you are hearing, or you they, and basically staying with you, during the lesson?

Curious mines want to know? I’m not trying to stir any crap, it’s just Sunday evening and I have to wait another 145 hours before I can go out again!

Those who offer lessons can also, give input as to what they will do-

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Shep. I doubt if there is anyone in the U.S. who has given more detecting lessons than I have. I started out charging $100.00 per day. This worked okay for a while until I realized that with vehicle maintenance costs which skyrocket on the rough dirt roads of the goldfeilds in Az. , I was barely getting by. I raised that to $150.00 per day for a year or 2 and then came the $3.00 a gallon gas. Since most people want to go to a place that isn't too pounded, this requires some gas guzzling 4 wheeling. The price had to rise again to $200.00. Surprisingly requests for lessons continued to increase and I was a lot busier than I wanted to be. I'm now heading for retirement in a few months and have quit giving lessons except with a detector purchase. It can be very frustrating with some people and lots of fun and rewarding with others. Some of my customers have gone on to find pounds of gold. These were the ones who realized from the start that they were going to have to work hard for what they got . They knew that the ground is not liberally sprinkled with gold everywhere. They were spending a lot of money for a lesson and paid close attention to what I was telling them. They were realists and knew that they weren't going to get rich overnight no matter how good they got with a detector. They knew that the tiny nugget they found during the lesson was a huge milestone . Now comes the ones who were doomed to failure. The guy who asks me to take him where there are lots of big nuggets, hopefully enough to pay for his new detector and the lesson the first day. Then the plan was to quit his job and detect full time and maintain an extravagant lifestyle or to pay off a few hundred thousand dollars of debt. This guy doesn't shut up for one minute and runs his mouth about his theories about where the gold is while I'm trying to explain something to him. He thinks that I and others wasn't smart enough to check out the other side of the hill and he will just walk over there and get rich. Most of the time this guy is so out of shape that he is not physically capable of even doing that. Hunting and fishing guides run into this all the time and I have also done both .

My lessons always included taking these folks to a place where I have found gold and has all the most important geological features that normally produce gold. I can show them and tell them why the gold is there. These same indicators are found in almost every place I have detected whether it is in Australia, Mexico, Alaska, California, or Nevada. . I use an external speaker and after an hour or 2 of detecting and prospecting basics most people are anxious to try to find a nugget. I get far enough away to detect without interfence and try to find a nugget. I have been able to do this about 80% of the time because I'm on a patch that I know like the back of my hand. I know where the hotspots are. There is no better way to teach what a nuggets sounds like than to find one and actually have the student listen to the often very subtle sound of a deeply buried nugget. To have a newbie actually witness a nugget being dug up and retrieved does wonders for his confidence . The next one I locate is his to dig and keep if he hasn't already found one himself. There is a lot more that goes into giving a succesful lesson but this is a general idea.

Anyone who is planning on giving lessons should be credible. He should have lots of experience finding lots of nuggets in a variety of conditions and places. He should also realize that there are liability issues. He should know survival techniques , have a very reliable vehicle, a basic knowledge of first aid . You don't want to get your customers in a bad situation. You need to inform customers before hand what to wear, what not to wear etc. I learned right away that some folks show up in shorts and sandles for a trek through the cactus abd thorns. They also show up in steel toed work boots, a ring on every finger, metal buttons on their jacket sleeves just to name a few. I've seen several one nugget wonders who think they now know it all try the lesson thing. They don't last long. Who would hire someone who has found one or a few nuggets? I wouldn't. There are very few succesful nugget hunters who are willing to share their knowledge at any price. There are also very few people giving lessons period . If you are looking for such lessons, you need to do some research. A lesson from a true expert is the cheapest way to insure that you have a good shot at success. I wish that such a thing would have been available when I first started. It would have cut months off my learning experience.----Bob

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(Another) great post Bob.

 

A minor but important point for interested beginners;

There is enough in the back posts of these forums

to keep a new person reading for days.

I am always interested to see who does

the reading first...it can save hours of confusion

and frustration.

If you aren't willing to start your research

by learning from the experiences of succesful hunters, donated for free,

it's gonna be a long learning haul in the field,

especially with the increasingly sophistocated detectors that are available.

 

If it were not for the patience and the kindness of

the people alluded to above, there are many who may have lost confidence

in their ability to begin to master this challenging hobby.

As it is, the detecting community continues to grow

and luckily for us late-comers, the source of knowledge that is being passed on

has grown too...

 

All the best,

 

Flak

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Good response Bob! I live over here in never never land, but ocassionally a piece of gold. I'm pretty much self taught and as David mentioned, there's alot of information on these forums which will help whoever wants to spend the time and look. When I got my 4000 and hearing how smooth it was suppose to be; I was at a loss. Till I noticed my power connection into the head was loose. After that problem was solved, I have had little problem finding little guys. Before this was solved, I was thinking I just wasn't doing something right. :unsure: Maybe a teacher would of caught this, maybe not-

I'm still trying to figure out what the proper swing speed is compared to what the setting is set at; but I'll figure it out.

Main reason for question was, have heard some people have got lessons, which they didn't seem were worth the cost. Now very possibly, they were like said know it all and want to get out on their own. A couple who give lessons, have mentioned there are people out there at different levels, some just starting, some with some knowledge and just need a kickstart on a new tool; bottom line is, I believe (and have been wrong before, once- no 3 times ;) ) it's up to the learner to state their experience and then shut up and listen.

See you all in AZ in Febuary!

Shep

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“I learned right away that some folks show up in shorts and sandles”

 

Sandals - That reminds me of the time I took a cousin and his friend to look for trilobites in the desert. My cousin’s friend showed up with sandals and shorts on. It took me off guard and I wondered what he was thinking when he put them on. I guess I should have warned him. There we were climbing among the sharp rubble and sheets of shale while he was sporting flip flops. Also, they didn’t bother to bring any food and were dumbfounded at how far in the middle of nowhere we were when we finally got to the location. To top it off after about an hour or so of looking they informed me they didn’t get to bed until early in the morning, so they slept in their car most of the time waiting for me to finish up looking over the area. They began to lead the way driving and sure enough, they slammed into a rock which caused their car’s rear wheels to come off the ground. We finally managed to remove the rock from under the car. I don’t relish taking some folks out in the desert with experiences like that.

 

Thanks for the post - very informative.

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Shep. I have always taken these folks to areas that don't have an awful lot of trash which can get discouraging quickly. The strange thing is that if there is one trash pile in 20 square miles the newbie walks right to it without fail . I can't explain why this is, but it has happened so many times it is spooky. I once sold a new coil to a newbie in Nevada and when he jumped on his quad and headed across the desert, I told the fellow with me to watch where he stopped. There was one old miners camp in the area that had trash all around it which was buried in the sand and disintegrated into thousand of rusty bits. There was no obvious sign that there had ever been anything there. Just as I knew he would , he stopped right there. There was thousands of trash free acres in every direction. He picked the only trashy acre. We see it on the forums every day, where the newbie tells of finding lots of trash, but where is the gold? After years of detecting most folks learn that the gully just behind the miners old cabin site will be full of trash. That was their landfill. Flashfloods eventually took it away. Some campsites have been used over and over again for hundreds of years , first by the native Americans , then the explorers , then the miners, cowboys , and hunters. A good campsite has the same attraction today as it did hundreds of years ago. We can assume that there will be lots of trash and bullets in the ground there and surrounding areas. These are things that aren't apparent to newcomers to the west and can't be taught. That is one of the things that has to be learned by experience. There might be gold there but it isn't any place to try to learn . We all have to deal with buried trash anyplace a white man has been and accept it as a part of what we do, but I like to give myself a break and keep it to a minimum. I'll look the area over and try to start in a fairly clean spot. 20 pieces of trash without a nugget and I'm out of there and over the hill. The newbie just stays there and digs trash until he wants to smash his detector not realizing that there is a cleaner place maybe only a short walk away. Lots to learn after the lesson on how to run the detector and what signs to look for that will just take time and perserverence. You can't teach 20 years of experience, but at least the basics can be passed on, and if I was just starting out I wouldn't even consider buying a detector from a place that couldn't give me the basics. I can't decipher an operators manual and know that many others can't either and there is no better way to learn than one on one instructions. It's up to the student whether he retains it or not.---Bob

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