im obsessed/addicted, is anyone else? tell me your story

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im obsessed/addicted, is anyone else? tell me your story

Post  JohnnyTheGreek on Thu Feb 11, 2016 10:27 pm

im obsessed/addicted to the point that im leaving my job (which i hate), friends (some of which i love, others which i can do without) and am going to try my "luck" (i use the term very loosely) at becoming a full-time/professional prospector.

i first tried detecting about 25 years ago with friends and a hired sd2000. if memory serves me correctly, it rained (not all day) and we found no gold. skip foward 22 years, and for some reason (most probably a youtube video), i decided to try again, this time, panning, on the advice of a miners den salesman, duncan, a really nice guy.

"hi, i want to prospect, where do i start?", i asked, "well, youve come to the right place", was duncans reply.......or something like that.

"do you prospect?", i asked, "yes, but i only pan". unable to comprehend what i had just heard given the nuggets being unearthed and LIVE on youtube, i had to ask why. duncans reasoning was that, and im paraphrasing here, "i always find a little colour panning, whereas my friends dont always find it detecting". "you will always find gold panning, but will not always find gold detecting", lesson learned.

so, for two and a bit years, i panned several rivers and creeks (in victoria) and ALWAYS found colour, 22 grams to date, the biggest nugget weighing .89g (boy was i screaming like a 12 year old having just received an iphone 6 for xmas!).

when i initially started, i asked duncan to at least point me in the right direction (i have since learnt that its pointless asking someone, "where did you find that?"). "try andersons creek, warrandyte", he said. im like, "wtf? gold in warrandyte, no way. gold is only found in bendigo and ballarat", i exclaimed. obviously ignorant, i took his advice and silently proclaimed, "i am not leaving until i pan at least one piece of gold". three hours later, i think i found my first panned piece. i say "think", given, like those before me, i had never seen or held a naturally occurring piece of gold before.

so for two and a bit years, i panned several rivers and creeks, each time, finding more and more gold...........well, usually finding more and more. it was back breaking work, literally. then i started thinking, "hey, maybe i can do this full-time and be no-ones slave". a quick calculation revealed i'd need at least 3 grams per week to live, yes, only 3 grams to cover what "I" need. at that stage, the best i'd ever panned in a day was 1.54 grams or thereabouts. on average though, it was more like .7. realistically, it was achievable, albeit physically taxing. "i'll try sluicing/highbanking, this'll expedite the process and i'll find more. god im a genius!". sure enough, and after watching many, many, many..........many youtube vids on the various homemade highbankers and the incredible "underflow sluice", i built and tested both with varying degrees of success. (note: i live by the philosophy, mistakes are never failures). just over 3 grams was my best using a homemade highbanker. god (im actually an atheist), i love seeing yellow in riffles and then in a pan.

little did i know, that in order to pan or highbank, you need one crucial element..........water, and lots of it. for those living outside australia, australia is known as a "dry" country because it is a...........dry country! so much so, that the old diggers during the gold rush left, yes, left mounds of unprocessed material because water was in short supply, even during the "wet months".

rather than continue, i feel as though i should ask, YOU, the reader, if you would like to read the rest of my story/obsession/addiction. if so, a colourful, yet humorous, "yes please johnny" will suffice, til then, feel free to post about your obsession, when it started, what triggered it and anything else youd like to add,

cheers johnny.


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im obsessed/addicted, is anyone else? tell me your story

Post  Mid.Life.Crisis on Thu Feb 11, 2016 11:01 pm

Great story Johnny,I started out panning and Slucing but now only in summer months manly detect these days when the weather cools down
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Re: im obsessed/addicted, is anyone else? tell me your story

Post  JohnnyTheGreek on Thu Feb 11, 2016 11:19 pm

gday mid.life.crisis,

oh, the irony of your username. i dont technically think im going through a mid life crisis as such, given ive thought about living off the grid for several decades now. as for my story, its not finished yet, its only the the beginning. like you, i also detect, to the point of addiction/obsession, hence the title of my post.

i'll wait for a few more comments, replies and stories before i post part 2.

so tell me mid.life.crisis, are you obsessed/addicted to the art of gold hunting?

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Re: im obsessed/addicted, is anyone else? tell me your story

Post  CostasDee on Thu Feb 11, 2016 11:38 pm

Great story Johnny, I wouldn't mind reading more...
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Re: im obsessed/addicted, is anyone else? tell me your story

Post  deutran on Fri Feb 12, 2016 12:38 am

Hi Johnny.You wouldn't be the first one to chuck it in to get away from the rat race.I came here for a detecting holiday and never returned home,I think its 5 years now.Your stories great please continue.
Steve
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part 2.

Post  JohnnyTheGreek on Fri Feb 12, 2016 1:46 am

its now 11:50pm, spot gold price is at $56.10 (bummer, cos i just sold some at $51.34) and i only have 6 hours of sleep available, yet here i am, starting part 2.

back to my story.........

during the two or so years of panning, i was reacquainted with an old school buddy. it mustve been 30 years since id seen him. he was and still is a nice guy. from now on, i'll refer to him as "vanessa". anyway, we got talking about what we've been up to and i mentioned gold panning. "ive never tried, but wouldnt mind giving it a go.", he said. "im going this weekend, wanna come?", was my reply.

"vanessa" had it easy given i'd already learnt where to look, how to pan, and ways to make life easier whereas i had no one teaching me (out comes the violin).

"vanessa" picked it up pretty quickly and soon enough, we were traversing the state (victoria) in search of gold. the more we found, the more we wanted (im pretty sure its a given for anybody who prospects). it got to the point of "vanessa" continually suggesting we try detecting. remembering what duncan from miners den had said, i was reluctant, yet "vanessa", after watching many hours of youtube users pulling out nugget after nugget thought it would be as easy as taking candy from a child. (although ive never tried, i dont think it would be as easy as the expression claims, whaling comes to mind).

there was also another reason i was reluctant.......i didnt have a detector, and worse, i was jobless. panning only required a pan, a shovel and as i later found out, a sucker bottle, at a total cost of around $40. shortly after his suggestion, i started looking at detectors, $69 off ebay should do it. one week later, there it was, my first metal detector. "vanessa" on the other hand, after researching all of 19 minutes, decided the garrett atx was the way to go.

thinking about the first time "vanessa" went off into the bush alone, never holding a detector before, oblivious to what its "really" like, still makes me laugh.

alot of people who have never detected, i imagine, think its just like a youtube vid, switch it on, walk 3 steps and "woo-woo"........GOLD! (actually, in his case, it was more like "wee-wee" garrett sound over a target). it took almost two years before "vanessa" actually detected a nugget. i shouldnt laugh, it took me slightly longer using a goldbug2 (my second detector). actually, ive never detected a piece of gold using it, i had to hire a 4500 and i swore to "vanessaa" that if i found a nugget, regardless of size, i would buy the 4500.

after spending two whole days detecting and with only an hour remaining before i had to return the hired detector, the familiar "woo-woo" echoed into my ears once more. this time though, it wasnt a bullet, an old nail, a piece of wire or any other metal found out in the gold fields, it was, and still remains my first nugget. at a whopping .2 grams, (i prefer 200 milligrams), it was less than my biggest panned piece (i forgot to mention i didnt actually pan it, i saw it in my classifier BEFORE i panned it and picked it out).

that was roughly 13 months ago, and since then, ive landed a job i hate, purchased an xterra 705 (june 2015) and a 4500 (august 2015).

the 705 was purchased purely for beach work although i tested it once on the gold fields, once was enough. so far, ive managed to find 550 decimal coins, 30 odd pre decimal coins and around 20 foreign coins (i keep a database of finds). in addition to the coins, ive found at least 15 rings, three or four of which are worth "something", a watch that retails at around $3400 and the usual.... 11,234 pull tabs, 13,397 bobby pins, 1,543 tent pegs, 134 lighters, 22 toy cars and two air mattress valves (these two werent detected though, i saw them).

when im not working and i only have a one day break and when the weather is terrible (less people at the beach, more room for me), im usually found at a beach. i love the sound that echoes through my ears when the coil passes over a metal object.

when im not working and i have more than two days off, its off to the GT straight after work, car packed and gear checked the night before. if there is daylight by the time i arrive at my destination, i detect. im usually up and waiting for the sun to appear....... so i can detect. i dont think ive ever had a lunch break......whenever im detecting. i dont stop detecting until i find a nugget (or theres no daylight). last week was the first time i hadnt detected a nugget during the day. it was also the first time i hadnt detected a nugget in two consecutive days. it took 19 hours and 37 minutes (over two days) to detect my first piece. it took 5 minutes to detect my next piece only 2 meters away. satisfied with 1.6 grams total (three pieces in all), exhausted, and having found another potential patch, i left depressed knowing it would be another two weeks before i could return.

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Re: im obsessed/addicted, is anyone else? tell me your story

Post  Grandfather Johnson on Fri Feb 12, 2016 8:54 am

G'day Johnny, It appears to me you have a very severe case of the dreaded Q12 GOLD Fever affraid Keep at it, it gets better from here on. Cheers

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Post  pablop on Fri Feb 12, 2016 9:20 am

Your post heading says its all.   Thankfully I don't have the bug, but have enjoyed reading your posts.  

I mainly detect to get out in the bush and explore and I also enjoy the pre-trip research and the history and even lack of history of the places where I visit.
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Re: im obsessed/addicted, is anyone else? tell me your story

Post  JohnnyTheGreek on Fri Feb 12, 2016 8:57 pm

Grandfather Johnson wrote:G'day Johnny, It appears to me you have a very severe  case of the dreaded Q12  GOLD Fever affraid  Keep at it,  it gets better from here on. Cheers

gday granfather johnson, i take it you either have the fever or had it, either way, tell me more.

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Post  Grandfather Johnson on Fri Feb 12, 2016 9:15 pm

G'day JTG , I earlier wrote a bit in the Members Finds section that explains it pretty well. Cheers

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Re: im obsessed/addicted, is anyone else? tell me your story

Post  JohnnyTheGreek on Fri Feb 12, 2016 9:17 pm

deutran wrote:Hi Johnny.You wouldn't be the first one to chuck it in to get away from the rat race.I came here for a detecting holiday and never returned home,I think its 5 years now.Your stories great please continue.
Steve

gday steve, id like to hear about your story if you dont mind. the more detail, the better,

cheers johnny

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Re: im obsessed/addicted, is anyone else? tell me your story

Post  deutran on Fri Feb 12, 2016 9:39 pm

Hi Johnny.
As with yours its a long,long story.
Its starts 25 years ago in a tandy electronics store in the specials bin.Saw a detector for $20.Bought it and went near Kembla Grange school grounds and found a penny at 1".Then saw this polish fella with a sovereign minelab detector.He reached in his pocket and pulled out a handful of pre-decimal silver coins,wow I was startled.He invited me back to his place and displayed an amazing assortment of jewelery and gold found at the local beaches and goldfields.He actually had a 12g nugget detected with the sovereign in a gully somewhere near Adelong.
So it began.
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Re: im obsessed/addicted, is anyone else? tell me your story

Post  Tributer on Sat Feb 13, 2016 1:31 pm

Hi Johnny, yes I am obsessed, my mum, dad, brother became obsessed when the 2000 was released , threw away the earlier detectors and detected hard in Victoria and going to WA for 4 months each winter. Brother still goes WA, been going 22 winters in a row.
Meanwhile I had a job/family/sheep/pets etc and sat on the sidelines doing 1 month trips to WA occasionally with my 4 weeks annual leave and detecting a couple weekends a month. I have found a couple good sized slugs and really got hooked and now I have just retired at 55 and will devote a lot of time looking for element 79.

My advice is not to necessarily plan to throw it all away and chase the golden goddess . Start by doing a long trip to WA or hitting Victoria for a few months maybe and then assess where you are at. Looking hard will gain you some gold but research, research, research and planning.. and doing trips with metal detecting friends will teach you heaps and help find more gold. I have seen a few people think they will only look for gold and end up frustrated with not a lot of gold.

Best of luck
PS 4500 is a great machine, bought mine on the day they were released and have paid it off 38 times over.
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Re: im obsessed/addicted, is anyone else? tell me your story

Post  JohnnyTheGreek on Sat Feb 13, 2016 7:12 pm

deutran,

has it been a wonderful journey? as ive stated, mine is only 7 or so month old. can you share some of the ups and downs youve had along the way?

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Re: im obsessed/addicted, is anyone else? tell me your story

Post  JohnnyTheGreek on Sat Feb 13, 2016 7:38 pm

Tributer,

thanks for the advice, but the "throwing it in" is not about the gold. its about the freedom. its about getting away from the horrors i hear and see everyday. the gold component is just the kicker.

since around the age of 16, ive always wanted to traverse australia. i remember watching malcolm douglas, (probably the catalyst), specials as a teenager and was blown away by australia's beauty and geological diversity. rip mr douglas. i wasnt a big fan of the leyland brothers, but i did like watching alby mangels's (try saying that out aloud) adventures, especially his "companions".

watching malcolm catch fish using a strip of an old coke can as a lure, handing feeding school sharks, interacting with the indigenous folk in isolated communities and just the way he went about it, as you can see, left a lasting impression.

my problem/dilemma for the last 30 or so years has been, "how do i earn an income without compromising my beliefs and values?", the answer.............GOLD! i essentially kill two or so birds with the one stone.

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Re: im obsessed/addicted, is anyone else? tell me your story

Post  JohnnyTheGreek on Sat Feb 13, 2016 7:45 pm

Tributer,

you mention trying WA, well, as it happens, "vanessa" (my male prospecting buddy) and i, will be driving over early april for a few months. but like i said, the gold is not the reason i want to live off the grid. its merely the piece of the puzzle ive been looking for.


btw, how much did you pay for the 4500?

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Re: im obsessed/addicted, is anyone else? tell me your story

Post  Tributer on Sat Feb 13, 2016 11:04 pm

JohnnyTheGreek wrote:Tributer,

you mention trying WA, well, as it happens, "vanessa" (my male prospecting buddy) and i, will be driving over early april for a few months.  but like i said, the gold is not the reason i want to live off the grid.  its merely the piece of the puzzle ive been looking for.


btw, how much did you pay for the 4500?

I,m hearing you Johnny and a lot of people on this forum ponder the same lifestyle as your contemplating and post about it occasionally, and other members are living the dream. My 4500 was about $5700 bought new on release day...can't remember what year that was.
I must write down all the release dates for the all the Minelab gold detector models, it would a good reference to help me correlate my memories.
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Re: im obsessed/addicted, is anyone else? tell me your story

Post  JohnnyTheGreek on Sun Feb 14, 2016 10:01 pm

Tributer wrote:
JohnnyTheGreek wrote:Tributer,

you mention trying WA, well, as it happens, "vanessa" (my male prospecting buddy) and i, will be driving over early april for a few months.  but like i said, the gold is not the reason i want to live off the grid.  its merely the piece of the puzzle ive been looking for.


btw, how much did you pay for the 4500?

I,m hearing you Johnny and a lot of people on this forum ponder the same lifestyle as your contemplating and post about it occasionally, and other members are living the dream. My 4500 was about $5700 bought new on release day...can't remember what year that was.
I must write down all the release dates for the all the Minelab gold detector models, it would a good reference to help me correlate my memories.

my math will tell me that youve found almost 250k. how many weeks did it take?

btw, im not pondering nor contemplating, the decision has been made, the wheels are in motion. all i need now is a three and a half ounce nugget so i can quit work and buy my new home, a toyota tarago built between 1993-1998, with dual sun roofs, front and rear bumpber, cruise control, i prefer manual, but will settle for auto................and it must be white.

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