The Detecting Mindset:  Quick Tips to Win, Win, Win!

The Detecting Mindset: Quick Tips to Win, Win, Win!

“All I do is win, win, win – no matter what.  Got relics on my mind. I can never get enough.” – DJ Khaled

A fellow detectorist recently asked me “how do you go out and find a pile of amazing finds every single time you go out?”

Well first of all I corrected him:  I don’t find a pile of good stuff every time.  But I do almost always manage to find something decent each time I go out detecting, and sometimes I hit a site that really produces a fat pouch full of finds.   And here is how I do it:


A guy on Facebook posted this recently:  “Is there anywhere to hunt in XXXville?”   I started to reply with a simple “No” at the ridiculousness of the question but after watching the thread I realized he was serious.     Research and permission are the primary keys to consistently finding quality items.   If you are afraid of knocking on doors and get permission I guarantee it gets easier if you force yourself to do it.   Fortune favors the bold.  No risk no reward.  All they can say is “No.”    The detectorist who consistently goes after well-researched, new private property with honest permission will win bigger and much more often than those who hunt sites repeatedly, hunt the easy public sites, and “sneak around” to hunt wherever they can.


This is the key and why I like yard hunting.    If you have six hours to hunt, try to hit three yards or more and if you hit a yard that is golden, stay there.  Be ready to move on after a couple of hours to another site.   Use the laws of averages to get on a good site on a given day.  Don’t put all your eggs in one basket, in other words.  Strike a balance here though – don’t leave a promising site too soon, and be ready to come back to a site where you had no luck on another day if it is promising.


I feel like I have mastered my primary machine.   If you can’t make adjustments in the field and take advantage of different types of sites, and can’t get the tough deep targets and targets in iron and trash, then you are severely handicapped.   So you have to master your machine.  I don’t mean learn it.  I mean master it.   Put in the hours and hours in the test garden and out in the field, experimenting with all the controls and settings until you are surgical with the best metal detector you can get your hands on – one that others hunting for the same things you are, in the same types of soil and properties are successful with, or one you are able to “kill it” with on a consistent basis.   When it’s working , don’t “fix it”.  When it’s not working, “fix it”.


I hear constantly how all the good places were hunted out long ago.   People have been saying that for years.    Sure most of the obvious, publicly accessible sites may have been hit hard, but tune negativity out.   Do the research, go for the permission, and work hard on your technique so you can find the goods.

Don’t listen to negativity surrounding your detector else you will fall in the trap of always believing you need an upgrade.  The problem with upgrading constantly is that you have to start the learning/mastering curve over again.    If you need to upgrade your detector, you will know it, and know the specific reason.  Perhaps you need a machine with a faster processor to hunt better in trash.  Maybe you need to upgrade your “entry level” machine.  Most of all, maybe you feel like you have mastered your machine, and are hunting quality sites, but aren’t finding enough.  Check yourself by hunting with a good detectorist to see if he/she consistently out-hunts you.  Remember “The Relics Never Lie”, and the finds, or lack thereof, will help you determine if you need to upgrade.

Don’t listen to negativity about a specific site.  Sometimes this negativity comes from your own mind – some sites just don’t look good.     Any good detectorist can tell you some of the worst looking sites are “the bomb” and some of the best looking sites are a waste of time.  You don’t know til you get out there and hit it hard.

Best of luck to you and thanks for reading!

Adapted by Detecting365 from Flikr

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