The Dog’s Bollocks

I believe that for many ‘detectorists’ the act of buying a new machine far outweighs the thrill of engaging with the hobby.

The same can be likened to cars, mobile ‘phones, computers and more. Many people will always go for latest most expensive of metal detector, the dog’s doodahs, mistakenly thinking that they will find more. This is a prime example of straight and crooked thinking. You can’t purchase success; the hackneyed phrase ‘more money than sense’ comes to mind.

If you regularly visit online hobby forums or FaceAche then you’ll be very familiar with threads extolling the virtues of one make of detector over another. They usually run for several pages, becoming increasingly vitriolic and personal before Godwin’s Law is invoked or an increasingly frustrated moderator pulls the plug . The machines being discussed are rarely the reasonably priced models, but high-end machines costing well over a thousand pounds.

I am often amused to see that whilst these detector wars are going on, the Wesley Carrington’s of this world, who have just purchased a machine costing peanuts, hit the headlines with a load of Roman gold coins – the kind of treasure the warring combatants are convinced they will find with their sophisticated gear.

But, of course that’s not true, because they have to turn up looking like a cross between a soldier on active service and an astronaut … that’s if you can see them in all that camouflage. In addition to the fancy dress costume (don’t forget the up-market boots) they’ll have the latest wireless noise-cancelling headphones, fingerless gloves from John Lewis, the most expensive pinpointer, a vehicle that doubles as a hotel if it spots with rain … and the ability to talk for hours about the merits of the Deus II over the Minelab Equinox. Oh, and don’t forget to festoon yourself forget with video equipment for those tedious amateur budding videographers.

For the guys with all the latest gear (but little idea?) it’s as though when they do venture into a muddy field they have to hold their head up high by sporting the latest and the most expensive equipment; when we all know that all you need to find treasure is enthusiasm, a reasonably priced proven detector and a spade.

It’s the Internet that has brought about an increase in metal detecting’s popularity, but there is a price to pay for everything and our hobby is just that when it comes to promoting new products. The marketing guys are certainly good at their job!

This simply means that every button or crotal bell they find has cost a loada dosh. It doesn’t seem to matter though. For so many detectorists the thrill of buying a new hobby-related [and expensive gadget] far outweighs the thrill of actually swinging the coil. Winter is upon us and the weather is colder. Why not become a fashion icon – Theres a market out there for suckers who need something a little different. It doesn’t mean it will make them better detectorists – and in most cases, it doesn’t.



In late October 2012, when a version of this blog was first published, it was announced that the archaeological series Time Team was being buried by Channel 4 after almost 20 years. I can’t say that I was disappointed. Neither was one of our famous playwrights …

“The archaeologists on television are loud, unprepossessing and extrovert – their loudness and over enthusiasm to be accounted for, I suppose, by the need to inject some immediacy into a process which if properly undertaken, is slow, painstaking and more often than not dull.” Alan Bennett on Time Team’s demise’ in 2012

Yes, I also agree that the time limit of three days to find what they were looking for was rather spurious. What they found generally turned out to be a few tiles, bits of broken pottery – magically transformed by computer generated graphics (CGI) – into some ornate drinking vessel, or even a Roman villa. I really enjoyed the antics when they had collective orgasms over coloured earth where post holes had once stood.

© This has been another tongue-in-cheek production on behalf of detector retailers everywhere!

9 thoughts on “The Dog’s Bollocks”

  1. Great thinking John but it isn’t just owning an expensive bit of kit but for the best results with it one needs to have an experienced expert knowledge of not just the detector but also the geology and ground environment and habitation history where the detector is put to work, I have spent my past 45 detecting years learning and still at it at 79.
    Merry Christmas & A Happy New Year to you and Lynda and all of your blog contributors.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Let’s see, John.. I do not drink, don’t smoke, do not gamble…. heck.. I have to have one vice..[Other than horses hat is.. lol]..Cannot have these millions lying around gathering dust..

    Okay.. maybe a bit more serious.. First part of the above is true.. not so the second.. But.. I am feeling the need for a new machine since we moved back to the coast with the salty conditions..Or maybe I am rationalizing.. either way, a Deus 11 is in my offing.. I figure I will enjoy myself while I can

    I hope that you and Mrs. John have a peaceful and joyous Christmas my friend..

    May the new year bring blessing for you as well


    Liked by 1 person

  3. Detecting skills using a relatively cheap machine to begin with, will stand you in good stead. I agree with what you say…

    Festive greetings to you and yours also.
    May the New Year be kind to us!


    Liked by 1 person

  4. … and a Happy Christmas to you, Paul. You have been a great influence on me with all the bollox you spout. Thank you.

    Took me a while to understand your grammatically crap comment. Are you alright?



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