Test Team Spotlight: Gary Penta
Gary has been detecting since 2013 and resides in Central Florida with this wife of 26 years and their five children. He is a 23-year United States Air Force Retiree and a member of the Ringfinders (both ground and underwater groups) and the Central Florida Metal Detecting Club.
His favorite hunting grounds include western Orange County, Florida parks and permissions, and the beautiful Treasure Coast beaches. His favorite things to find include old metal toys, pet tags, and rings. His favorite recent find is a 14k gold Firefighters ring.
Gary enjoys restoring his finds and creating ring finding videos. When he’s not detecting, you can find him building miniature metal detectors and creating treasure hunting dioramas and other modern folk art pieces. He donates 95% of his artwork to charitable and club events and gives them to friends and other metal detectorists. If you want to see some first hand, you can see one of his displays in our Kellyco Orlando showroom. You can see his art at mydetecting.com.
Gary’s number one bucket list item is to dive on a 1715 wreck, which he’s hoping to do this summer.
Minelab Equinox 600
This detector is multi-frequency, and also has a wide range of single frequencies. These frequencies have a high level of accuracy. One customer reported that he was detecting at the beach and fine-tuned his frequency settings. It beeped in the dime range, and sure enough, he found a dime. It’s good at filtering out the junk and does well in freshwater or saltwater.
- Weight: 2.96 pounds
- Frequency: 5, 10 and 15 kHz; multi
- Waterproof: Up to 10 feet
- Warranty: Three-year limited detector; one-year battery
- Easy to use
- Waterproof up to 10 feet
- Does not come with wireless headphones, but you can use bluetooth
- It does not have the ability to switch to single frequency for gold modes
- It does not have a backlight
- I am a newbie to metal detecting and bought this detector. Out of the box, it was super simple to use since it has presets of beach, beach water, park and field. I have used it about seven times on the beach and have found two necklace pendants and lots of quarters and dimes. I have nothing to compare it with, but feel it is very good and solid as I rarely get alerted to junk metal and it gives you a minus number when it is garbage. The coil is large, perfect for trying to detect in large areas like a beach. I am hooked and my young adult daughter and I have had a blast. I can totally recommend the Equinox 600.
Minelab Excalibur II
Do you want to go metal detecting and scuba diving? The Minelab Excalibur II is for you. This detector is waterproof up to 200 feet, but it’s also effective on land. It features 17 different frequencies to help you find more coins, rings and relics buried deep down.
One of the nifty features is that this detector emits a different tone for every frequency. The tone for gold, for example, will sound different than the tone for silver.
- Weight: 5.1 pounds
- Frequency: 17 frequencies from 1.5 kHz – 25.5 kHz
- Waterproof: Up to 200 feet
- Warranty: One year limited
- Waterproof to 200 feet
- Uses Broad Band Spectrum (BBS) multi-frequency technology
- Different tone for each frequency
- Headphones are hardwired to the machine
- Without proper care, the seals can wear down
- A little heavy at over 5 pounds (but not too bad if used underwater)
- I have to say that it is truly a perfect machine for the beach and water hunting that I do. It took me about a week to begin to distinguish the different signature tones for the Excalibur, but in about two and a half weeks I have already found a nice gold ring and an assortment of .925% silver jewelry. I really like the ease of the turn on and go nature of the Excalibur. I simply tune the threshold and leave my other dials set from my last successful hunt and I'm off.
Minelab Pro-Find 35
The Minelab Pro-Find 35 was designed for simplicity and ease of use. The Pro-Find features DIF technology, which significantly reduces interference when the pinpointer is switched off by disengaging the pinpointer coil’s magnetic field. A “lost” alarm also goes off after a period of no activity. The pinpointer requires a 9-volt battery, which lasts around 30 hours.
It has two different tones for ferrous and nonferrous metals. It’s brightly colored, easily visible, and comes with a holster, lanyard, and 9V battery.
- Weight: 6.82 oz
- Frequency: DIF frequency
- Waterproof: Up to 10 ft.
- Warranty: 2 years
- It's a good pinpointer. The smaller tip makes it easier to find targets. It's a keeper. Being able to tell ferrous from nonferrous is a plus.