Metal detecting for Roman and hammered coins

Hammered coin

Many people new to metal detecting dream about finding their first Roman and Hammered coin, a common perception is that they are missing a certain sound or signal. This is not true as the metal detector does not know the difference between a ring-pull and a Roman coin, as the very often have the same conductivity level. The metal detector just registers a target based on conductivity.
So in theory if you can find foil and ring pulls, the only thing you are missing out on is luck and possibly the correct site.
Or perhaps one or two other small elements !

Hammered coin

Choosing the right frequency

Some hammered and Roman coins sound shorter due to their size, and this is when using a higher frequency can really be a bonus, something higher than 11Khz normally does the job.

Let’s assume your frequency is within the desired band, and you know you are in a good area, it’s time to look at your search technique, many of us think we have a perfect sweep, but in reality it’s either to fast, to slow or to high, so try and pay extra attention to the basics.

man metal detecting

Detector Vs site conditions

If you are on an area of ancient habitation, you will without doubt be confronted with lots of Iron, and this will be your biggest hurdle. If your detector has a slow sluggish recovery speed, your chances will be dramatically reduced, cheaper American metal detectors such as the Garrett Ace, are renowned for struggling amongst iron due to their slow recovery rate, but I guess you get what you pay for.

The more refined detectors have an adjustable recovery rate, along with many other very important features.

Recovery speed

For those not aware of recovery speed, or reactivity, it is the time it takes for a metal detector to re-set it’self after reporting a target, very much like camera snapshots in burst mode.
Basically, if you have a good metal detector, you are on some ancient land and your search technique is sharp, your turn will come.

Searching for Roman coins video

Can you get rich by metal detecting

In these times of lockdown, how do I survive is a question many people have been asking, can I make money metal detecting?
This all sounds very exciting and straight forward, you simply buy a detector for a couple of hundred quid and you are on the road to a pay day….Right !
We all like to make a little extra cash, but take it from me, someone who has been in this hobbyfor many many years, your chances of making thousands if not millions is highly unlikely, very much like winning a lottery.

XP Deus one of the top metal detectors

Sure you can be rewarded by metal detecting but the rewards are more like small wins compared to the big pay out !

A professional metal detectorist at work

Did you know : Most professional metal detectorists do not like to use the term “Treasure Hunting”
If you are lucky enough to find something nice and want to tell the world, just remember there is a protocol you must follow first or you may just end up in jail.
Make sure you have an agreement with the land owner, if you are searching with a group or club, make sure they have an agreement in place and permission to search from the land owner, not the tenant farmer.
Then your find must be reported to your finds liaison officer who will record your find and take the find to the museum under the portable antiquity scheme. If your find is of no interest to them it will be returned with provenance so you can then do as you wish with it.

Make sure group dig organisers have permission

If you intend to go out metal detecting just to make money I am pretty sure you will be disappointed, if you talk with seasoned detectorists, very few will discuss monetary value of finds because this is not why they detect.
Detecting on the beach for spendable coinage is great sport, but please remember it really is a world away from saving history.
Check out the Metal Detecting Skill School video page for some excellent tutorials and metal detecting masterclasses

Hunting the Romans with Paul and Gary

Imagine this frustrating situation, Paul had some fantastic land for metal detecting, he knew there were Roman coins and artecacts lying just beneath the surface but he knew his machine was not performing as well as it should, his XP Deus was very un-settled on this land and he could feel he was not getting the best out of it.

After weeks of frustration and watching the Metal Detector tuitional videos Paul asked for help on the Metal Detecting Skill School Facebook Community, he got a message back from Gary at XP and arranged for a visit to perhaps find out why his XP Deus wasn’t finding the Roman treasures, Paul understood metal detectors very well and regularly uses the Minelab Equinox on his pasture sites, but for some reason the XP gave a lot of false signals.
Could it be the high water table or even the fertilizer that has been used over the years.

After a short while and carrying out some simple tests, Gary had found the solution to Pauls problem.

He asked Paul what adjustments he had made in order to combat the false signals, Paul ran through the list and the one setting he missed out was the setting that was required.
After adjusting the SILENCER fro -1 to 3 the field came alive with targets, and indeed some really cool Roman coins.

Catch up with Gary and Paul in the field and see how their metal detecting adventure went.

DJI Osmo Pocket – Don’t buy it

Unless you have a phone that supports USB C or an Apple lightning adaptor.

What does this mean ?
Well basically any smart phone more than 18 months old , for example a Samsung S7 Edge or before is not compatible with this phone, that’s probably 30% of the blogger population.

DJI Osmo Pocket adaptors are not compatible with Micro USB YOU have been warned

If you read the blogs and watch the videos they all say the DJI Osmo Pocket can be used without a phone, that’s total bullshit as I have recently found out myself.

OK I hear you say just buy a Micro USB to USB type C adaptor – Sadly no can do, as the DJI Pocket has a unique custom made dongle that attaches the phone to the unit (Type C or Lightning), if you used a lead you would have the camera in one hand and the phone in the other.

Be warned if you buy a DJI Osmo Pocket make sure you read this review

Here’s my story

I got the DJI Pocket because it could be used without a phone as it has it’s own screen and controls, little did I know You can not even use DJI Pocket without initiating it via the Mimo App, which needs to be plugged into your phone. So if you have a Micro USB phone your stuffed.

DJI Osmo Pocket advert on Amazon is very mis-leading

I purchased this gimbal camera from Amazon where it clearly states a Micro USB adaptor is available, when I called DJI Help Line they confirmed there is no such adaptor.
How hard would it be to make a Micro USB adaptor, just like the other 2 supplied with the kit, how much would it cost…. A Dollar perhaps !

You can not use the DJI Osmo Pocket without using a compatible smart phone

DJI shame on you for not thinking about all customers, your Amazon advert is clearly incorrect with no mention of the lack of Micro USB support.
DJI said that I could always use the wireless module for an extra £53 but they are out of stock until further notice.

The Bloggers should be ashamed of themselves for not being honest about the pro’s and con’s of this product.
But after all they have been given a free product.
If you are experiencing problems drop DJI Support an e mail at :

XP Deus Team USA | video podcast

We are pleased to announce the XP Deus Team USA metal detecting podcast is now live, the show will be online every month with new guests and a range of XP topics form technical advice to comedy.
The Show is hosted by Mike Counter and Dave DiNatale backed up by their strong team behind the scenes.

XP Deus Team USA banner
Show number 1 features a wide variety of topics and videos from some of the XP Deus Team USA members,
XP Soya talks about her finds and why she chose an XP Deus.

XP Sonya talks about metal detecting with the XP Deus
Carol also known as the She Detector talks about hunting on a Florida beach.

Using the XP Deus on a Florida beach
Hollywood comedian Todd Roy shows us how important research is and never to bring a non detecting friend along with you.

Todd Roy offers advice and metal detecting tips
Gary from XP talks about the history of the company and how they got started. He also interviews Darcy Fear who was on vacation from Canada to the UK and found an amazing civil war hoard.

Gary interviews Darcy who found ancient coins while metal detecting in the UK
Later in the show it’s back to the UK to catch up with Gary Cook and Steve Murtey as the live dig some interesting coins.

UK metal detectorists hunt for Roman treasure
Steve Graap, one of the shows producers talks about the best way to make detecting videos and gives some interesting tips.

Steve Graap talks about filming your metal detecting adventures

Enough said guys here is the show, and remember if you want to be a part of the XP Deus Team drop them a line via Facebook or e mail.
XP Deus Team USA Facebook link

SJCam SJ600 Legend the my experience

SJcam SJ600 legend, this is my experience and my personal opinion.

Having watched excellent video reviews, I decided to buy an SJCAM sj6 Legend, on paper it looked perfect, but before I purchased I wanted to ask a few questions about it and will it be suitable for my needs.
At that point I should have taken the warnings, the UK number for aftersales just rings on to an answerphone.
So your only support is forums and social media, and as we all know that is a minefield, who is genuine and who has been given products in exchange for glowing reports.

I eventually purchased a camera from Amazon for around £135, plus the extra batteries, a remote controller and an external microphone.
The plan was to find a small camera that I could carry around and film my metal detecting videos, with good image quality and stabilisation, plus the external microphone should enhance the audio quality. This was not intended to replace my Sony PXW X70 or my Sony NX30, I was under no illusions that this camera was going to set new standards, what I wanted was a Go pro replacement for a fraction of the money, just like the reviews had stated, but what I eventually go was a headache and a lot of waisted time and money.

I upgraded the software to the latest version and made some necessary changes to the menu settings.
My first time out into the field was a total disaster, the battery only gave me 15 mins filming time, the plastic mount snapped in half, and when I arrived home and downloaded the video.

The lens
I could not believe the fish eye distortion even in narrow view,  all my footage was unusable, so that was my first trip scrapped.

The Accessories I purchased

The wrist mounted remote control connected well, but you never know if it’s filming or not, the only way is to look at the front screen, while I am on the subject of the front screen, the reviews I watched gave me the impression that the front screen would show the image, like the rear screen, this is not true, it only shows the film timer. So if you are doing a piece to camera, be prepared to have your head chopped off because there is no way of telling if you are in frame.
Once again, if there was a chance to talk with someone on the telephone this would have been one of my questions.

The rear screen is very handy and the settings can be easily reached, the FOV (field of view) option is greyed out when you have certain settings enabled, I did find on several occasions the camera had a mind of it’s own and switched from video to stills, so you thought you were filming but you actually took a picture.

The monitor at the rear is pretty unusable in sunlight, there are lots of shadows.

The buttons on the unit are pretty self explanatory, the external microphone plugs in to the Mini USB slot, and to the side is the Micro SD card slot

While we are on the subject of pictures, the picture image quality is on par with a set of crayons.

Stills of my XP Deus

This is set to the maximum size, which I feel is simply not good enough.

Stills of our vehicles

Today I decided to give the SJCAM a second try with the external microphone, and armed with an extra 2 batteries, and once again another epic disaster, once again, I had a bunch of stills when I should have had video and the audio quality from the external microphone was either choppy or clipped.

I will let you decide if the audio from the external microphone is acceptable.

That’s it for me, the SJCAM SJ6 legend is not the tool for the job, what really annoyed me was the lack of customer support, if there is support out there it needs to be made more accessable.
I refuse to give it any more head space, this lesson cost me just under £200.

Klaas John Botas a detectorist and artist

Gary interviews Klaas John Botas

Many of you may have seen or personally know Klaas, he’s a dedicated detectorist and always follows his heart and soul, Klaas John has such a presence you cannot fail to enjoy his company.
Although living in The Netherlands he visits Englands detecting fields on a regular basis and has been doing this for over 25 years.
Pic Klaa and Gary

Klaas John has a very special relationship with the UK. He regularly attends rallies and meetings all over the country.

He is Born from an English father and a Dutch mother, who met in the Netherlands just after the second world war.
In the Netherlands Klaas John is involved with the Dutch Detecting Association, who work very closely with the PAN, the Dutch equivalent to our PAS. He started as a member of board and nowadays he’s a writer for the Dutch Detecting magazine. Although officially retired as a member of board, he’s still involved in the clubs well-being; whenever there is a problem, he is always around to help.

Recently the Dutch Detecting Association knighted him as a honourable member. Klaas John is one of only 6 Honourable members in the Netherlands.

I managed to grab a coffee with Klaas John while visiting the Netherlands and wanted to share this interview.

Gary : Klaas John when did you start detecting?
For me detecting started at  a young age, I must have only been around 10 years old, I saved up to buy my first detector and was hooked on the hobby immediately. Throughout the years I have worked with all kinds of detectors from various brands.

Gary : I Know the answer but please tell the readers what your “Go to” machine is”
Nowadays my workhorse is the XP Deus with the 11 inch coil or the HF coil. I really love the machine, and think it’s almost perfect….. I know, almost !
Yes, there is always room for improvement, but for me that’s mainly on small things. I really love the way XP got things figured out. With the right program and settings you can go on almost any kind of terrain. When people ask me what kind of detector I use or what is the best program, I just return there question. I see a lot of ‘uncertain’ detectorists out there, and in many cases uncertainty can bring failure.
If the person detecting next to you finds a Gold ring.. It doesn’t mean you’ve got the wrong settings or machine. Just take your time to learn what your machine is capable of. If a program or detector works for me, it doesn’t mean that it will work for you. Give it, and yourself time to learn how to detect with what detector and which setting.”

Gary : What has been your most memorable find?

Over the years I have been lucky enough to make many spectacular finds; Silver, Gold, Hoards.

“My Anglo Saxon coin of Cynethryth, wife of King Offa is my most memorable. I still remember when I found it many moons ago. When I first held it in my hands I knew right away this was something special. When I recorded it they told me that it was only the second one known to exist, the other one was in the British museum, being in a more poor state. That’s when I get a buzz, knowing that you have added something to the heritage of the country. The fact that afterwards an object may have to be sold doesn’t concern me, It’s the feeling of recovering it after a long day of stubble bashing that will always be in my heard. The find after recovering it simply becomes an object, the feeling of finding it stays with you for life.”

Gary : I would love to know more about what do you do for a living?
I work as an artist under the name Botas. I am a painter and a sculpture. My paintings can best be described as modern symbolism; I like to combine elements of Cubism and Pop-art and in my paintings you see old symbols, which we can also see in our hobby, they can used to tell the story of the painting.

Gary: Why painting?
Painting has become my form of expression. Over the years I have taught myself various techniques and even invented some. Some of my work is recognizable by its bright colours and the use of powerful black outlines.

These powerful black outlines are painted in the traditional Japanese Shodō style;  “There is only one chance to create the perfect line with the brush. The brush strokes cannot be corrected. Even the smallest lack of confidence shows in the work. These brush strokes write a statement about me at that moment of time”. One of my latest works is ’80 years after’ Picasso made in 1937 his work about the bombing of Guernica during the Spanish civil war on the town of Guernica, this painting tells us 80 years forward, that not much has changed in the world.

“In this painting I wanted to express my feelings about the of the civil war in Syria, not only for the country itself, but also the consequences on a global scale. While the Arab spring flows like a wave over the Arab countries, these freeing waves are becoming bloody civil wars. Various groups in Syria are killing each other on the basis of their religion or origin. The major powers start to interfere in the fight, because they fight a war against terrorism and these terrorists have their Caliphate in Syria.”
The painting is painted in Symbolist style and tells you about the fight in Syria against its own people and foreign countries. The Arab spring is visible on the basis of the tottering ‘hand of Fatima flowers’. The three-unit soldiers stand for murder of opponents, suppression of the people (the veil) and attacks abroad. While the Sun is going down as a sign of a dark age, the effects are also noticeable in the West. The attack on the Office of Charlie Hebdo also enables our freedom of expression. In our own country the anti-Semitism seems to grow again. Many boats full of refugees making the journey across the Mediterranean in the hope (anchor) of a better future. The great powers, America and Russia are opponents again, America seizes over this war against terrorism with great force Russia puts its sickle onto the neck of America because they are supporting the reign of president Assad. This massive work, size: 245 x 110 x 4 cm is painted in Acrylic on Canvas.

Gary : Tell us about the Spooneys?

Besides painting I work on little sculptures called Spooney’s. It all started with a wood block and some spoons and  the first Spooney was born. This first Spooney gave me the idea to literally build my own world. A happy, positive and colourful world was to be.

Since then, there have been many Spooney’s made. Each Spooney’s is unique and is part of SpooneyWorld. A world full of fun, crazy, surprising, exciting and fun events. The Spooney’s are made of wood, metal and kitchenware.

In this SpooneyWorld you can see that I have even included my beloved detecting hobby along in it, as you have seen Gary detecting Spooney’s are being born on a regular basis. The detecting Spooney’s are collected by many of my detecting friends across the world.

John Spooney with his XP Deus metal detector is our latest addition, I am very pleased with the way he has turned out.

Gary : What are your dreams / goals for the future?
“For the hobby I hope I and It will be possible to go out detecting every now and then and see my friends here and across the pond, basically just having a good time. My biggest dream for my work is to make a animation movie with the Spooney’s, for young and old. Tell people great stories about life itself with humour and a tear. A bit like you can see what the Aardman studio’s are doing. Maybe I should get in touch with them” Klaas John smiles.

Gary : As always my friend it has been great talking with you, I very much look forward to meeting up again very soon.

If you like to follow Klaas John Botas or want to know more about his artworks or Detecting Spooney’s, please feel free to use one of these links below.


Official website Artworks:

Official website Detecting Spooney’s:

Instagram Artworks:

Instagram Spooney’s:

Facebook Spooneyworld:

Facebook Klaas-John:

XP Deus the ultimate test

Not quite the Holy Grail of tests but a series of interesting metal detector tests you can try at home, we have used the XP Deus to demonstrate.
The video uses some standard test items to demonstrate the difference between 14Khz and 54Khz.

A Gold  earring used in the test

We all have our own views on air tests and quite rightly so, the video below demonstrates how the different frequencies perform with mineralised soil thrown into the equation, and proves why you must take site conditions into consideration when metal detecting.

Highly mineralised soil tests.

Even coins and artefacts on the surface can be overcome with the ground signal.
Using a higher frequency can lift the signal back into the good signal range.

Please try these tests at home and discuss it on the Detecting 101 Facebook page or  join our forum.

Here is the Deus High Frequency test video.

Metal detecting video tips part 2

OK so you have the equipment and you are ready to make your first metal detecting video, what happens now !
Just remember Whatever it is you’re producing, you’re not likely to be the first one to do so. The biggest challenge you will face is standing out from competitors in your field. What can you do to set your production apart from the rest out there ?

Times are changing I would be confident in saying approximately zero potential customers will likely read your thousand-word written explanation about why your metal detector is better than the next guy’s.
Visual content is so much more digestible, accessible, and shareable to the average person.
If you can, figure out a way to showcase your product or just yourself in a way that’s relatable and memorable.
Let’s go back a short step, I just said “why your metal detector is better than the next guy’s” which is something to give careful consideration, there is a very important question you need to ask yourself……What am I promoting ?

I am pretty sure you will be promoting something, that’s why you are making a video, are you promoting a product ?, are you promoting a particular skill, are you promoting a club ?…..Are promoting yourself !. If so this is the hardest thing to get right and if you get it wrong it will be a sure way of your viewers hitting the fast forward button.
As someone once said : Are they laughing at you or are they laughing with you ?

Ask yourself how many You Tube video’s are out there based on self promotion, sure some people are masters at this and do it in such a way you feel a connection with them, take Todd Roy for example a fast and witty comedian who you just love to watch, he is promoting himself but also telling a great story.

If you can pull it off, you will have them eating out of your hands and I wish you the very best. However if you don’t have Todd’s skills and charm…find another niche market.
Have you ever made a purchase just because you liked the personality of someone? this can be the same with visual content—perhaps a video—You instantly feel connected with them because they are just so likeable. Aim to create that kind of video content. If people decide they like you, they will be returning viewers.

Let’s not even go to the other side of self promotion : Glory hunters with a runny nose swearing and screaming down the camera on a windy field, yes we have all seen them. And I am not suggesting for one moment you are one of these people, but please be aware of what message you are portraying to younger viewers and possible future sponsors.

So basically to sum up this section, try to work out what you will be promoting and do it to the best of your ability,  try to think how the viewers will  interact with you.

Your ability

Be honest with yourself about your on-camera skills, if they are not great ask a friend who is more charismatic? Put him or her in front of the camera as the main character, you can still work as a team, but let them take the lead.
Talking into a mic and speaking to an unseen audience may seem easy, but it’s not. Do several takes, upload them all, and edit out awkward pauses and glitches afterwards. Practice trimming and splitting clips until your transitions look natural. Remember to keep continuity during filming, don’t change your shirt half way through.

The product

Make sure you know your product well, also never assume everyone else knows the ins and outs of your product, keep it simple and try to communicate with a wide range of skill levels.
If you’re marketing a metal detector try to create quality screen captures on video. Demonstrate the typical use of your product, but don’t jump right into it—use screen captures to demonstrate each point. If the viewer can identify with the item you’re showing them on-screen, they’ll be much more engaged.

Also let the viewers listen to the audio, rather than just showing you digging the target.

 Viewer retention

Believe it or not, not everyone will like you or want to sit through your video, even if it is short. Why should they? There are millions of other videos on the Internet, and some of them even have large breasts in them.
Figure out what value your video is going to offer to your audience. Does it tell a great story? Does it explain how to use the product ?
Think back to the last video you shared. Why did you share it? Chances are, if you’re like most people, you wanted to establish your authority on the topic. You wanted to be the first to present that piece of information to the people in your hobby. It’s why most content is shared—for the social credibility.

It all depends on the type of video but it is generally said the ideal length of time your video detecting video should run is 8 minutes with an intro of around 10 seconds. This is the ultimate viewer retention time…which I partly agree with but not always, if you have changing content the video can hold a longer audience retention.

Get out there

You’ve created a great piece of video content that showcases your personality, explains what you’re doing, has a clear benefit, and tells a great story. What do you do next?
Okay, this one is painfully obvious—you promote the heck out of it right !……Yes and no, please be respectful where you post it, don’t spam forums and other social media sites, try to be discrete.
Export your video to more than one platform. Some people watch on YouTube, some will only watch videos on Facebook. Don’t limit yourself to one platform, or you’ll miss out on a huge number of potential viewers.

Metal detecting video tips part 3 will be available soon, so stay connected to Detecting 101

Roman pig / Ingot bids reach £38.000 at auction

This little piggy went to market !!

Sadly the item did not reach the reserve price, the auction lasted about 45 seconds, there were very limited bidders.
Bidding started at £28.000 and the 4th bid was £38.000, so the hammer went down at £38.000.
The Roman ingot
Earlier this year the Roman lead ingot or “PIG” was unearthed on a farm in Somerset.
The dig was organised by the Southern Detectorist club, some other nice finds were made on the same day, such as Dan Stevenson’s Silver Roman Hoard.

Jason Baker discovered the “very rare” find – known as a pig, and like most of us had no idea what it was.


The two foot ingot dates back to 164 AD and is inscribed with the name of emperor Marcus Aurelius Armeniacus.

Jason Baker had been searching with a faulty erratic search coil but had not replaced it, he said when his detector gave a loud sound I knew it was something good, “ I bet you did mate”.

When the Romans invaded Britain 2,500 years ago, they mined the lead, cast it into big lead blocks and put the emperor’s name on it and sent it back to Rome.

The ingot of Roman lead weighing six stone and two feet long  is believed to be dated from around from 164 AD and is inscribed with the name of emperor Marcus Aurelius Armeniacus.
We would like to wish Jason all the best for the future.