Garrett Ace 150 Metal Detector Review
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If you are new to this hobby it can be confusing not only knowing which detector to buy but where to start looking, this is why it can be a great idea to visit your local metal detecting club. Most towns and cities have one and they are always very helpful and friendly towards new comers. They may even have spare detectors that you could borrow so you can go out with them on a hunt to get a feel for the hobby before you commit any money to it.
The hobby of metal detecting is now firmly established in a number of countries such as Britain, the USA, Australia and many European countries. There are thousands of metal detectorists who enjoy this fascinating pastime and reap the benefits in a variety of different ways such as:
- It is a great form of relaxation away from the pressures of work and or domestic life
- The fresh air and exercise helps to improve your overall wellbeing and health and there is the opportunity to make new friends and meeting other enthusiasts.
- And of course, not forgetting the thrill of finding coins and artefacts that have been hidden for hundreds of years.
Initially a newcomer to the hobby is happy to find anything other than paper clips and soft drink cans. An old penny or a button from a uniform from one of the world wars would be cause for great amount of excitement and celebration, and a pocketful of coins and broken pottery is proof that the detector works and that their users know what they are doing. In most cases those budding detectorists will turn in to serious hobbyists and the excitement of the entry finds lose their appeal. This is when the hunt will then change and the desired targets become older items and the search perimeters will change in order to try to locate these more sought after pieces. This will require some research and this can be done via local clubs and library resources.
Metal detectors have dramatically evolved over the years and they are now extremely complex electronic devices with a wide variety of capabilities dependant on price you are willing to pay. Most are generally ‘user-friendly’ being relatively simple to operate and they usually have the ability to discriminate against certain metals so you can increase the chances of a good find. Prices range from around £100 for an entry level machine to well over £1,000 for a top-of-the-range model.
The best thing about this hobby is it is suitable for all ages, from the very young to the very old and because it is an outdoor hobby you will obviously reap the benefits to your health as it involves fresh air and exercise. It can be done in groups, via clubs or solitary if that is how you prefer to work. There is a code of conduct that should be read and adhered to at all times, but it is a voluntary code so there is no actual enforcement of it. However it is considered good practice by all metal detectorists and any club or group should make you aware of this code prior to taking you out in the ‘field’. However, be aware that trespassing on private land is a crime and you can be arrested for it, so be sure you have the land owner’s permission before setting foot on their land.
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Code of practice for responsible metal detecting
This information can be found and has been copied from www.finds.org.uk to preserve the importance and relevance of each statement.
Being responsible means:
Before you go metal-detecting
Not trespassing; before you start detecting obtain permission to search from the landowner/occupier, regardless of the status, or perceived status, of the land. Remember that all land has an owner. To avoid subsequent disputes, it is always advisable to get permission and agreement in writing first regarding the ownership of any finds subsequently.
Adhering to the laws concerning protected sites (e.g. those defined as Scheduled Monuments or Sites of Special Scientific Interest: you can obtain details of these from the landowner/occupier, Finds Liaison Officer, Historic Environment Record. Take extra care when detecting near protected sites: for example, it is not always clear where the boundaries lie on the ground.
You are strongly recommended to join a metal detecting club or association that encourages co-operation and responsive exchanges with other responsible heritage groups. Details of metal detecting organisations can be found at www.ncmd.co.uk / www.fid.newbury.net.
Familiarising yourself with and following current conservation advice on the handling, care and storage of archaeological objects.
While you are metal-detecting
Wherever possible working on ground that has already been disturbed (such as ploughed land or that which has formerly been ploughed), and only within the depth of ploughing. If detecting takes place on undisturbed pasture, be careful to ensure that no damage is done to the archaeological value of the land, including earthworks.
Minimising any ground disturbance through the use of suitable tools and by reinstating any excavated material as neatly as possible. Endeavour not to damage stratified archaeological deposits.
Recording find spots as accurately as possible for all finds (i.e. to at least a one hundred metre square, using an Ordnance Survey map or hand-held Global Positioning Systems (GPS) device) whilst in the field. Bag finds individually and record the National Grid Reference (NGR) on the bag. Find spot information should not be passed on to other parties without the agreement of the landowner/occupier.
Respecting the Country Code (leave gates and property as you find them and do not damage crops, frighten animals, or disturb ground nesting birds, and dispose properly of litter.
After you have been metal-detecting
Reporting any finds to the relevant landowner/occupier; and (with the agreement of the landowner/occupier) to the Portable Antiquities Scheme, so the information can pass into the local Historic Environment Record. Both the Country Land and Business Association and the National Farmers Union support the reporting of finds.
Abiding by the provisions of the Treasure Act and Treasure Act Code of Practice, wreck law and export licensing. If you need advice your local Finds Liaison Officer will be able to help you.
Seeking expert help if you discover something large below the plough soil, or a concentration of finds or unusual material, or wreck remains, and ensuring that the landowner/occupier’s permission is obtained to do so. Your local Finds Liaison Officer may be able to help or will be able to advise of an appropriate person. Reporting the find does not change your rights of discovery, but will result in far more archaeological evidence being discovered.
Calling the Police, and notifying the landowner/occupier, if you find any traces of human remains.
Calling the Police or HM Coastguard, and notifying the landowner/occupier, if you find anything that may be a live explosive: do not use a metal-detector or mobile phone nearby as this might trigger an explosion. Do not attempt to move or interfere with any such explosives.
I know that seems like a lot but most of it is common sense and good manners but it is worth reading if you are new to this hobby so that you do not make a mistake and get yourself into a tight spot in the future. Now let us move on to the Garrett Ace 150 metal detector to see what features it has to offer and why it would make a great first choice for any new comer to this hobby.
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Garrett was established in 1964 by Charles and Eleanor Garret. It started out as a small business being run from their garage and over the years it has grown and expanded into one of the world leaders in metal detection. Their driving force has always been to manufacture and sell the highest quality units at reasonable prices so that everyone can enjoy the hobby of metal detecting. However, their range does not stop with the metal detectors use by hobbyist, they also have a security division and a countermine division which makes them the total package when it comes to metal detection.
They have two sub categories of metal detectors, those designed for the United States and those for the International market. In some cases, the only difference is the name of the unit but there are some regionally exclusive models.
The Ace 150 can be found in both categories and is one of their entry level detectors, which is why it is perfect for newbies to this hobby. It has a fantastic range of features at a price that won’t have you running for the hills. So, what are its key features?
- It has coin depth indication to help you determine target depth.
- There is a low battery indicator icon remains on when batteries become weak, thus giving you enough time to replace them and not miss out on any good finds.
- The headphone jack is a quarter of an inch (1/4″) in size.
- There are a number of interchangeable ACE series search coils which will help make detecting target easier.
- It has a large LCD screen with easy-to-read Target ID Legend.
- The pushbutton controls with One-Touch operation makes changes quick and simple to execute.
- It breaks down into 3-pieces for easy travel and storage.
- There is an adjustable arm cuff for comfort.
- There are also 3 search modes, All Metal (zero), Jewellery and coins.
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The technical specification of the unit are as follows:
Target ID Cursor Segments 5
Iron Discrimination Segments 1
Accept/Reject Discrimination NO
Search Modes 3
Sensitivity/Depth Adjustments 4
Electronic Pinpointing NO
Frequency 6.5 kHz
Audio Tone ID Levels 3
Standard Search coil 6.5″ x 9″ PROformance™
Length (Adjustable) 42″ to 51″ (1.06m – 1.29m)
Total Weight 2.7 lbs. (1.2 kgs.)
Batteries 4 AA (included)
Warranty 2 Year, Limited Parts/Labour
The interchangeable search coils available for this model include the following:
- 9″ x 12″ ACE PROformance™ Search coil.
- 5″ x 11″ ACE PROformance™ DD Search coil – Standard search coil for ACE 350, EuroACE, ACE 400 and ACE 400i Metal Detectors.
- 7″ x 10″ ACE PROformance™ Search coil – Standard search coil for ACE 300 and ACE 300i Metal Detectors.
- 5″ x 9″ ACE PROformance™ Search coil – Standard search coil for ACE 150, ACE 200, ACE 200i and ACE 250 Metal Detectors.
- 5″ x 8″ ACE PROformance™ DD Search coil.
- 5″ Super Sniper™ ACE Search coil.
The smaller coils such as the super sniper are perfect for heavily trashed areas where you may encounter a lot of junk metal, the smaller coils are able to pinpoint desired targets much easier than the larger ones can under those conditions.
Features – Coin Depth Indicator – Low Battery Indicator – Headphone Jack – Interchangeable ACE series search coils – Large LCD Screen – Pushbutton Controls – 3-piece Travel/Storage – Adjustable Arm Cuff – 3 Search Modes, All Metal (Zero), Jewellery and Coins.
Pricing – Affordable – Approximately around £150.
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The ACE 150 offers surprising performance as well as features not usually found on detectors in this price range. Its intuitive controls and lightweight handling make it an ideal detector for competition hunts, novices or as a back-up detector. It is recommended for coin hunting on dry beaches or via fresh water areas and can also be used to search out jewellery and other interesting items.
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