Gold Detector Reviews: Fisher's "Gold Bug 2"
Intermediate Level or "Journeyman" Detectors:Fisher "Gold Bug 2"
The "Gold Bug 2" ($760.00-$900.00) is a gold detector I have field knowledge of and experience with, thanks to my mining "pard" Kane Fisher (no relation to the manufacturer, by the way). Although I am a sad substitute for the more successful nugget hunters out there, I must say I was impressed with the "Gold Bug 2's" sensitivity to small pieces of gold in home field tests and its overall performance in highly mineralized conditions out in the field.
71 kHz UHF Operating Frequency
Unlike the lower end or "beginner" gold detectors I've covered in this series of posts, Fisher's "Gold Bug 2" was not designed for multiple tasks like nugget and coin hunting. Its purpose, pure and simple, is to detect gold and this it does remarkably well.
To accomplish this task, the "Gold Bug 2" employs circuitry that runs at the ultra-high frequency (UHF) range, specifically 71 kHz, which I believe is one of the highest gold detector frequencies out there, unless I miss my bet. This UHF operating frequency enables the "Gold Bug 2" to detect even tiny pieces of gold as long as its operating parameters are set correctly.
The "Gold Bug 2" also has a 3-position ground balancing switch for negating the effects of highly mineralized ground or those "hot" rocks that can make some detectors go haywire. Within this 3-position function is an additional "fine tuning" potentiometer that can be adjusted for even greater ground balancing and sensitivity.
How sensitive is the "Gold Bug 2?" Unbelievably sensitive, based on my own experiences bench testing and wielding this machine.
Gold Prospecting Books
Properly tuned and operating under somewhat "ideal" bench-test conditions, the "Gold Bug 2" can detect placer gold down into the grain size/weight arena. Using the "Gold Bug 2" out in the field, I was consistently able to recover tiny pieces of lead like bird shot and bits and pieces of old wire and rusty metal (ferrous) that were difficult to see they were so small.
All Metal/Iron Discrimination Functions
Fisher's "Gold Bug 2" has a 2-position discriminator that functions in an "all metal" mode or an "iron discriminate" mode. This latter function is very useful in situations where you're plagued with lots of metallic trash, but remember....anytime you employ a discriminator when hunting you may miss some good targets (nuggets) as well. Additionally, the optimum operating threshold for the "Gold Bug 2" is very easy to set, something that is not always true of some detectors.
A Tough Little Gold Hunter
"Gold Bug 2s" come standard equipped with an adjustable stem or pole which is a must for portability and ease of operation. The standard search coil supplied with the "Gold Bug 2" is a 6.5" elliptical coil powered by 2 "drop in" 9v batteries and the entire unit weighs in at just under 3 pounds.
All in all, Fisher's "Gold Bug 2" is a tough and highly competent little gold hunter that has proven itself in the field. Well-known prospectors and nugget hunters like Alaska's Steve Herschbach have shown time and time again that the "Gold Bug 2" can get those nuggets.
That's it for now. Be safe and good luck to you out there.
If you liked this post, you may want to read: "Good Spots for Gold in California's Motherlode"
(c) J.R. 2010
Questions? E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org