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Here is the situation...
I have been a certified Dive Master for 10+ years and regularly take my students metal detecting. I have used this detector on tons of dives to 120-140 ft. on my way down one day hit around 90 feet and noticed bubbles starting to come from the detector housing at the bottom. so yes the water got into the housing. I returned to the surface pulled the batteries out an dried as much as i could off. It was the end of the season and I put the detector on a shelf to finish drying out and forgot about it till this last month when a old student asked if i still took people out detecting.
So i sent the detector to Tesoro and they told me get this....it was a warranty issue and they would have replaced it if i would have sent it in when it happened. But because i didnt send it in immediatly i would have to pay for the parts and the new housing or I could just replace the board and hope my old housing didnt leak. They have had several problems with this housing and as a matter of fact they even have changed the bottom of the housing so the coil wire is moulded into it now. so if your gonna spend the extra coin on a warranty dont... just go buy 2 or three of the less expensive ones and throw them away when they break or leak. BTW the tesoro is rated for 300ft so a failure at 90 is clearly a issue in manufacturing and one would think would be covered under warranty.....guess not!
I am a happy Tesoro Cibola owner, why? Well they are excellent well built deep seeking detectors with very good discrimination, plus they are light weight and they have a Lifetime warranty and they back what they sell, if it quits send it in and in a short time you are detecting again!! How many other detector companies offer this type of warranty or service? I see other brands that seem to have a new model every 6 months something Tesoro does not do, possibly for good reasons, they are happy with the models they have and the customers are happy with what they have.
Now back to the Cibola, here in SC the soils are mild and I've had no issues with the detector lacking the manual GB like its brother the Vaquero. I've hunted SC beaches with no problem in dry sand with sensititivy and threshold maxxed out, wet sand I can still hunt but have to adjust sensitivy/TH down a bit to reduce chatter.
Old home sites and wooded areas is where the Cibola shines, don't ignore those faint beeps just "digg" I've recovered Mercury dimes at 7-9" with no problem. The pinpoint does not work well on deep small finds, it tends to null as the object passes the center of the coil, I simply X the find and dig without the pinpoint and I'm usually dead on.
As far as Ground Balance,I press the PP and turn the threshold till I have a slight hum at waist high and while still holding the PP I lower the coil to the ground, if the threshold hum does not change you are fine as far as being ground balanced but if there is a change or null "silence",you are + or - on the factory preset ground balance, you will loose some depth but you can still hunt depending on chatter, as stated before in our soils I have not had a threshold change or need for a manual ground balance.
As far as discrimination it does a fine job rejecting iron, I've taped a Silver dime to a old square iron nail and it beeped loud and clear on the dime while rejecting the iron nail. I found the more I use the Cibola the more I'm able to decide if I should dig or not unlike the TID "digital" machines that suppose to make that decision for you.
"you really have to get to know any detector you use".I've heard many say the Cibola loves Aluminum even with the discrimination wide open and it does, if I don't get that double blip on a shallow target like it does on a coin but rather a loud long beep, I'll raise the coil 6-8" and if the signal is still strong it is highly possible you have a aluminum can especially at older sites, or use the pinpoint feature, coins and rings tend to have a sharp short beep or double blip, as I said it's a matter of getting to know the detector and making the decision to dig or not.
As far as air testing here are some of my test done using the stock coil with sensitivity on 10, threshold at 1 o-clock "slight steady hum" and discriminate on iron with US clad coins Nickel=9" Dime=7 1/8" Quarter=8" and the half at 9" .At 100% with full threshold & sensititivy "Supertuned" Nickel=12.50" Dime=9.75" Quarter=11" and the half at 12" as far as gold it has about the same depth air testing a Nickel.
These airtest were done on a wood table using headphones, new battery and the measurments I took were where the detector first broke silence at the maximum distance at the settings provided, so digg those faint signals. As we all know air test are controlled and cannot be used to determine how deep the detector will go in actual hunting conditions.I do recommend headphones for those deep faint targets and supertune the Cibola when you can, running maximun sensitivity, maximun threshold and reduced discrimination for better depth.I think the little Cibola is quite impressive for under $350.00
My second detector I ever owned was a used Tesoro Silver Sabre Plus. a TH'er friend sold it to me when I was just 16 and at that time had a $100 piece of crap detector from Radio Shack. the Tesoro SS+ was a godsend as it was Simple, Easy to handle, and Deep seeking. I used it for 6 years and also had both the 4" coil and the 8" open center coil that came with the detector. 3 controls, Disc knob, Sens knob, and mode/Retune switch. the only thing I wished for more was some sort of ID Meter. I used the thing primarily hunting Beaches and when I went to old Schoolyards and Ghost towns. I found many Indian Head pennies, Wheaties, Buffalo Nickels, Silver Mercs, old Square nails, Axe heads, farm implements, Tokens, buttons, once even a small cache of 6 silver dollars.
I miss that old thing. It broke on me a few times and when I turned 22
I went off to away to University and forgot about the old Tesoro SS+.
I no longer have it and wish I could find it, maybe its stashed away in
a closet? or in my parents attic?
Luke in Michigan.
2-The Cortes'is much more sensitive than my Bandido II umax which means it has better depth.
3-The target IDing was excellent; better than my Whites XLT which is a more expensive unit.
4-Pin pointing is as good as the Bandido II umax which is excellent.
5-I switched over to SUM mode from DISC and liked the different tones.This audio feature will come in handy as I'll explain later.
6-The CORTES worked great in wet sand (which is the extent of our mineralization here in S.Florida. My partner dug a coin that was at least 7 or 8 inches out of the wet-salt-sand, and most other machines usually have a problem with this type of sand.
7-The display light worked fine, especially since we usually start detecting beaches just prior to dawn.
The Cortes is a POWERFUL machine, so much that I was forced to turn down the sensitivity to 5.
Paul of Harrisburg
I recently upgraded from a Garrett Treasure ACE 300 to the Tesoro Eldorado. At first I was a bit uncomfortable... I felt blind not having a target ID anymore. Now, I wouldn't go back to a target I.D. for anything! I love the Eldorado! In less than a month, the new machine became a treasure-finding extension of my arm!
Learning to ground balance took a few hours to master but every other function is simple. This detector is almost a turn-on-and-go unit. I appreciate the light weight and it's single 9V battery lasts a long time when using headphones. I opted for a rechargeable NiMH battery.
The discrimination is wonderful and very accurate. When I find a target, I can change the discrimination level as I make my swing and see where the target signal disappears. By doing this, I can fairly accurately I.D. the target without a I.D. meter. Also, I have found that different targets have uniques sounds depending upon their depth and composition.
The standard 9X8 spider coil gives good coverage and helps make this detector very sensitive to small items. I have found little items that my old detector would never have even noticed. On the down side, the detectoris also very sensitive to large metal items like playground equipment. Depth has been satisfactory... I've never really tested the limits but I have no complaints.
Pinpointing is easy and very precise. I usually pinpoint in disc. mode and then fine tune my pinpoint location with the non-motion all metal mode.
The detector also has three frequency choices in case of interference. I haven't had a need to change the frequencies yet.
I also like to bring my detector with me when I travel. The Eldorado disassembles into several small pieces making it very travel friendly.
I bought the Eldorado intending on using it for coin hunting but I have heard many people say that it is great for relic hunting. I never considered hunting relics until I "accidentally" found a rare Civil War button while hunting for coins in Georgia. The button was just appraised at over $900! I love my Eldorado!
I have had my "Tiger Shark" now for 2 weeks and I have "Put it though the work's", went every where I could, the beach, dry land (dirt ) Salt water, fresh water ect .. You see I had 14 days, if I did not like it I could send it back...smile.
..Any way I asked EVERY one about it.I got so many answers, some good, some bad I like to have went "Nut's"...Thats another reason why I went EVERY WHERE as fast as I could but taking my time with the Tiger Shark when I got to where I was going to use it.... Now what I found out was This Thing Works GOOD!!!.... The only problem I had was that when I got on the beach it went to about 4 in deep and that was about it "But" that may be that I did not have the ground balance set right.
I am 46 and this is my first metal detector and I did not want to buy but one AND I wanted one that worked in water and the beaches...Thats why I got mine...Theres a place (inside) the main box that you can "Fine Tune" it and I did just that on land (dirt) I can fine things (small things at that ) as deep as 12in or more on ALL Metal Mode Slow or Fast...Slow works better for deep stuff but Fast works almost as good .... You would like you can call Tesoro Tec. the number is..520-771-2646 ... Take care hope I have help some..... David in Alabama
While I am new to Metal Detecting, I have to say the Tesoro Eldorado has performed above and beyond my expectations! The information that comes with the machine is easy to follow and simple, especially for the novice MD'er.With it's Ground Balance and Discrimination Level features, I have NO trouble making finds. It's 9x8 coil, and ability to change from Disccriminate to All Metal modes has made pin pointing the find very simple.
Hey, lets face it T'H'ers are extremely loyal to the machines they own.One will tell you there unit will detect chinamens fillings while letting you know that with your unit you couldn't find your way home! Not me,I'll tell you the best unit is the one you can find what your looking for.
For me its the Ban. M.M.II, I don't call it a detector, its a discriminator--- heck, a magnet will detect metal, but our hobby has no use for just finding"any" metal, we need to find "certain" metals. I guess what I'm trying to say is it all boils down to DISCRIMINATION.And the Ban. M.M.II does it and does it very good, separating trash from treasure like nobodies business.
Some have said Tesoros lack in the depth department.I agree and disagree on this, would you rather have a unit that can detect a target at 2ft. and not know what it is ?Or a unit that can only go down a foot but can answer that age old question "to dig or not to dig".The Ban. M.M. II ,at about 10" can I.D. a silver dime buried an inch away from a nail, no confusing numbers,target I.D's, just a repeatable signal ,that's it.Sure there's units that display what you have found and its depth,but that's IF there's nothing around the target.
In my test garden I have a silver quarter buried exactly 1 inch away
from a old square nail at a depth of 5".On the surface I scraped just a bit
of dirt away and placed a piece of foil about the size of a pencil eraser on
the opposite side of the nail.I get a broken(but repeatable) response east
and west but a smooth unbroken response north to south.My buddy has a
top-o-the-line microprocessor 1000$ machine.I ask him to I.D. my
nail-quarter-foil test garden.After a couple of swings and two different
programs he declared its a iron object. I then scraped the surface with my
boot(secretly removing the foil)and ask him to try again.He X'd the target
from all directions and said "pull-tab at 5"".A graphic display that the
Tesoros discrimination circuit, in my opinion,is heads above the rest.Don't
get me wrong, sometimes in the field, I'll get a iffy signal,I'll go to
all-metal to see if its by itself,then call him over to I.D. it. But tell me
where do you find treasure where there's no trash?Not very often, I think
we'll all agree on this one.With the Ban. M.M.II, I can tell you 95% of the
time,bottle caps,foil,nickels or small gold rings,zincs or Indian
heads,clads,and silver in that order.And with the auto-retune I can get
maximum depth and with a preset disc. level, with a flick of a switch tell if
its a trash or treasure.With features such as lightweight,life-time warranty,
1 drop-in 9 volt, 3&quarter turn manual ground balance its all I need to keep
my pouch filled. While others are looking at target I.D.s,numerical values
and depth meters, I'm just looking at well,finds,lots and lots of finds
In August of this year (2000), I was attending my first treasure hunt as a participant. During this hunt, I was using a Bounty Hunter Sharp Shooter II for my hunting. Being new to metal detecting, I had considerable trouble trying to use all of its features and many of them are not explained adequately in the manual. In addition, the weight of the thing was getting heavier as I was lugging it up hill and down dale (literally...it was on a farm in hill country). After a great deal of frustration, I was almost ready to give up and go home.
A fellow detectorist that I had befriended from the "Silver Seekers" club in Ohio had a new Compadre for sale that she had won in a contest. The price was quite reasonable, so I bought it then and there.
The biggest advantage that this detector had over my other detector was the light weight. It made the hunt rather fun. I was able to find 4 or 5 targets to the one that I had located with the Bounty Hunter.
The Compadre has just one knob for discrimination. There is no sensitivity adjustment. This is both a blessing and a curse. The blessing comes from the fact that the only things you have to do are put in a 9 volt battery and turn the knob to the on position. There is an audible tone that is loud and lasts for about 5 seconds. I can only assume this is used to help you set the volume control on your headphones or to make sure you can hear a target in noisy conditions if you aren't using them. The single knob means that there is less weight and headaches getting set up. For a beginner, the Compadre isn't a bad choice, but I could recommend a little better.
I mentioned earlier that the one knob (discrimination) is a curse as well. The curse comes in because of the fact that the sensitivity is always at one setting and I can only presume it is set high. The problem that this creates is that even with the knob set all the way to the high end of discrimination, it will still beep (albeit erratically) at targets lower on the knob. I have even found nickles with it set to the high end, if that tells you anything at all.
Overall, it is not a bad detector, but there is room for improvement. I know that Tesoro makes a detector that has the additional sensitivity knob and would recommend something closer to that for the beginner. Digging up every target because you are not sure of what it is can be quite frustrating.
As for the Bounty Hunter that I mentioned earlier, I am certain that many of the problems I had with it, except for weight, were because of my lack of experience with such detectors.
Three years ago I decided to expand my horizons, and start detecting water
as well as land. My first water detector was a Fisher 1280-X Aquanaut. The
1280 was always a reliable hunting companion, however, I get bored quick and
decided to experiment with other detectors. My second summer, I purchased a
used White's Surfmaster II off of a friend who had upgraded to a CZ-20. I
quickly realized that the Surfmaster wasn't for me.
Once again, I was back in the market. During the past winter I found myself carefully researching various water detectors. Seeing as water hunting is my favorite hobby, I did not let money be an issue in my purchase. I was willing to spend any amount of money to find the right detector for me. I started asking around and talking to different dealers. I considered the Minelab Excalibur, the CZ-20 and the Tesoro Stingray II. I had heard from many people that the Stingray II was a great water detector. After talking to several dealers, I learned that the Stingray II had been discontinued and was going to be replaced by the Tiger Shark. I decided to wait for the new Tesoro Tiger Shark.
Once the Tiger was released, I ran out to my local dealer and picked one up. Here is my review of the Tiger Shark: The day after receiving my new Tiger Shark, I went to my local freshwater beach. I live in Ohio, which means that swim season is only three to four months in the summer. The lakes are drained, and the land lubbers scour the dry lake beds with their land machines. These areas get cleaned out in the winter! The swim season hasn't been in too long, so I didn't expect to find much. I performed the ground balancing ritual that Tesoro details in the user's manual, set my discrimination to 4(which i determined was what I needed to reject iron and hit small gold in my test garden) and headed straight for ankle-deep water. I started swinging, and within five minutes(to my amazement), I hit a strong signal. I made one quick scoop, looked in my basket, and sitting in the bottom was a small silver hoop earring with .925 plainly stamped on the folding clasp. I was fairly happy. Now I can honestly tell everybody that the first target with my Tiger was silver! Beats the heck out of a pop tab! As I continued to detect, it started sprinkling rain and thundering. I decided to give it a few more minutes and leave. Right before I was about to wrap it up for the day, I hit a strong tone. Scooped the area, and heard that pleasant "jingling" in my metal basket. Looked down and saw a beautiful man's sterling silver ring with six small white stones. A very large ring at that. I am 250 pounds with relatively large fingers, and this ring was loose on my ring finger. Nice find! I decided to call it a day.
Overall, the Tiger Shark was easy to use, trash rejection is outstanding,
and in the short period of time that I used it at the beach, it seemed well
balanced and easy to carry around. The next day I decided to try the
detector out in my yard. My property dates back to the 1920's, and I had
reason to believe that I might hit some goodies. Well, I can say that the
Tiger Shark makes a great land detector as well as water. I did some
testing in my coin garden, and determined a discrimination setting that
would eliminate most junk, and pull most coins. After several hours in my
yard, I had close to 20 coins, and some miscellaneous antique trinkets. I
found a strange oriental coin, a handful of Wheat pennies, and two silver
dimes. I tried the detector in a relative's yard, and pulled close to thirty
coins in a one hour period (mostly clad). This detector does it's job, and
does it well. It is a true dual-purpose machine. I am using it for all of
my coin shooting, as well as water hunting. I have also done some testing
with my own jewelry, and the Tiger is extremely hot on small gold rings and
chains. I would definitely recommend this detector to anyone considering a
new water detector!
I own a Cutlass umax that I bought this past summer. I have to say that I haven't been so impressed with a detector in years,it sure is the smallest control box I have seen since the garret gta.
What really amazes me is the power it packs and the depth it has on nickels. I have several machines and none seem to get depth on them.
Dont get me wrong i have some top of the line other brands and their overal depth is probly deeper than the umax but not on nickles. I think anybody that is starting out detecting should not settle for anything less. Pinpointing is the easiest i have seen with a motion detector without a pinpoint mode. Battery drain is also the lowest I have had. All that power and only one 9v is sure a money saver.
I would recomend it to any one. I cant find any fault with it ernie
Thought I'd just drop my 2 cents worth in, got started several years back with an old used bounty hunter, held together with pop rivits and super glue, well it worked pretty good, found lots of stuff with the old thing, then I decided to upgrade, got a new garrett with push pads and digital readout, was really good machine never a minutes trouble, found coins like a champ, ran bout 70--80 % accurate but all it wanted to do was find coins, i found few other relics and stuff but lots of coins, in the meanwhile i picked up another bounty hunter for backup (tracker) worked good was lots lighter than garrett, 3rd time i used it switch broke, excellent repair and warranty, they took care of it very promptly, but all the plastic parts on it squeaked and moved around, wrote the factory, they said was not cost effective to stop this, so i decided to live with it since the machine worked so good.
Later on was at local park with garrett, getting coins really amazing the
kids with the accuracy, doi'n good, as I was leaving a 10 yr. old with a
detector he had just bought at a garage sale for 50 cents went to the same
spots i had been and started getting coins with my digger I loaned him the
kid had never seen a detector before that day, after much de mudding and
scraping of rust from this sort of blue looking mess,bent and run over too, i
found the name Tesoro, sure impressed me, after much research and
checking things out I now have a Cutlass by Tesoro, am very happy with
performance and quality, 2.2 pounds one battery and works flawlessly, I need
this because in the past 2 yrs was fortunate to have a couple heart
attacks, but i can still detect, will till they spade me in.
Bugar in Indiana
I've owned a Tesoro MicroMax Cutlass for a couple of years now, and I would certainly recommend it for a beginner or as a backup detector. Here goes:
After swinging a detector for a couple of hours, even the Arnold Schwarzeneggers of us appreciate a light weight detector -the Tesoro MicroMax line is exceptionally lightweight -in fact I've never had an aching arm or back because of it. This can be a huge bonus which can prolong your detecting day comfortably.
The Cutlass is powered by an over-the-counter 9v battery which I've found always lasts for at least 20 hours (conservative estimate). Obviously this is great for running costs and ease of battery replacement as well as carrying a spare around with you.
The whole look and feel of the detector is one of quality -I believe this detector is very well made. Though I haven't broken anything on it, my impression is that it's a tough little detector. My detector experience is only limited to Whites, Garretts and Tesoro, and in my opinion, the Tesoro looks to be the best made. I'll mention the easy breakdown of the detector too (though I know that from what I've seen most detectors are comparable from this aspect).
*Unlike my other detector, the Cutlass doesn't seem prone to sensitivity to the usual bumping against the odd tree root.
The guarantee -assuming Tesoro lives up to it (and I've heard only positives about their service).
Simplicity -this detector has three controls -no big bells and whistles but it just does the job. I used this detector with my friend who has Whites XLT and I am pretty sure it would never miss "beeping" at anything he detected, however one might ask, why not buy a Tesoro Cutlass then? Read on for the negatives:
*Let's take it for what it's worth; this detector is simple and has less bells and whistles. Though I was always confident it would signal a target, one event caused me to go out and buy a more up market detector. I found a great signal once, but it was mystifyingly over a large rock in the soil. After (much) careful sifting and examination, I decided that the rock was the cause of the signal. I got up and walked on -however my friend who had a Whites XLT happened to pass over the same site -result: a whopping silver dime signal on his display. Sure enough, a lovely 19th century dime was resting on the surface. After wiping a tear from my eye, I asked myself "Why hadn't I seen it?" I just don't know. All I do know is that if I had a detector that identified this signal as a dime, I would have more than likely looked further. I know some enthusiasts would say that you have to learn to interpret audio signals to their fullest -and hence I would have found the dime -however this assumes some competency in hearing. As my mother always used to shout at me through the bathroom door when I was taking a bath "You're tone deaf!!!!". As such, I just believe that my target interpretation needs more than just an audio signal but a visual one to help out as well -something only supplied on the more up market detector models. I believe that on average, you're going to have to dig up more trash with this detector than a more up market one to get similar results. So to those people like me who aren't very good at audio signals, the Cutlass may present some issues.
*There is no no-motion pinpointing. Yes it would be nice to have this feature, though I've personally found with practice that by "X-ing" that this disadvantage is largely negated and you can pinpoint as well as other detectors with no-motion pinpointing -it just takes a little longer.
*Though I have experienced no difficulties yet, I am a little apprehensive over the choice of a toggle switch on the console face (it's used for switching between discrimination and all metal mode). When you're out in the woods and there is alot of dirt about and I wonder if this might become susceptible to getting dirt inside it. As I said though, no problems yet so this can hardly be counted as a negative.
In essence, these are the only bad things I can say about this detector -it's consistently performed well and done what it's supposed to.
Something I do find hard to comment on about this detector is its performance for discrimination -since I tried to use as little discrimination as possible -I detect mostly in the woods where there is less likelihood of trashy areas -I never really found I used it much. Overall, a very very good product at a very good price and a product I expect to get many years of service from.
If you are looking for a detector to introduce you to the hobby of metal detecting, but reluctant to spend $300 to $1000 on a machine for a hobby that you aren't even sure you'll enjoy yet, The Tesoro Amigo II is for you!
For around $150 to $190 (new!) this is a quality machine at an affordable price. Of course there are no bells & whistles, but, it gets the job done just fine anyway. Just turn it on, set the discrimination knob as high or low as you'd like, & start swinging the coil, it's that easy to operate!
I used mine for the first two years I detected and found turn of the century artifacts, lots of modern change, numerous wheat pennies, two silver dimes, an 1893 Indian Head penny, and many other interesting items with it. I have recently upgraded to another machine to get those bells & whistles, but that little Amigo II is what got me hooked! It is light weight (2pounds), easy to use, and very dependable. As for depth, I've dug coins at depths of 4-6 inches with it & once it even went down over a foot to reveal a flattened 55 gal drum to me! :-)
The Amigo II's simplicity & adjustibility makes it well suited for use by children as well as adults. If you ever decide to upgrade as I did your Amigo II is well worth keeping as a back up detector or a loaner for friends who may want to join in on a hunt once in awhile. The Amigo II is also tough. Mine has been knocked over and bumped around a couple of times by children in their excitement upon target recovery, and I have never had a problem with it. Then again, I wouldn't have to worry anyway, because the Amigo II, as well as all the Tesoro's to my knowledge, have a life time warranty. In short, I LOVE MINE! Happy hunting!Chris Buckingham