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The Mythical Beast and the Harvest

story by John Freeland

A manticore is a mythical creature that features the head of a human, the body of a lion, and a tail of a scorpion and was first mentioned around 400 B.C. However, there is another, contemporary beast amongst us – Minelab’s new metal detector of the same name. With confidence, I can say that the MANTICORE is a beast, and with its new metal-detecting technology – especially Multi-IQ+ - the modern machine provides an edge in finding both more and deeper targets.     


I’ve retrieved a lot of coins and vintage items in the last several weeks with my new MANTICORE. Finding targets as deep as 10-inches gives me an edge where other machines and detectorists have either missed or could not hear the targets well enough to dig them. The MANTICORE makes me feel like I am detecting an area that has never been hunted before.


Lately, I have been detecting an old school lot in the lovely Sunshine State, and more specifically, Pensacola, Florida. I’m retired from the United States military, affording me time to spend hours metal detecting, and I’ve been on a run with Lincoln Wheat pennies and silver coins. The new MANTICORE is a “silver slayer”.


Although I mainly like to detect vintage coins, I sometimes detect relics or even rings. For example, I was detecting near an old tree at a recently torn-down school and heard that distinctive high-pitched tone. If you’ve ever swung a Minelab machine you understand what I mean. After careful digging, I recovered a vintage “fly fisherman” watch fob of what appears to be of bronze composition. When uncovered, it was crusty and unrecognizable, but quick use of my electrolysis machine cleaned it up nicely.


Among other treasures, I found two foreign coins: a 1949 República De Honduras coin as well as a 1967 British penny with the recently deceased Queen Elizabeth II displayed on the front. Young children amaze me with the things they bring to school...and often lose.


While learning this new machine, I have found over 130 Wheat cents. And my site being an old school from the 1940’s, one can assume that milk must have cost one or two pennies back in the day by the huge amount of Wheaties on the grounds. I enjoy finding Lincoln cents because it helps provide dates of activity in an area from the past. I have uncovered coins with dates ranging from the early teens up through the 1950’s; however, most are from the 1940’s. Originally from the farmlands of Ohio, this reminded of harvests from my teenage years. More specifically, a wheat harvest. As if finding coins weren’t enough at my now new favorite area to detect, I have found other mentionable items.


Pensacola dates to the 16th century and was first established by Spanish explorers. This town and its surrounding area is rich in military history. It is not uncommon to retrieve a Civil War Minié or round ball anywhere in town, as well as the occasional military uniform button. Pensacola was also prominent during World War II, with a large Navy Base just west of downtown that remains in use today. I enjoy detecting a local city park because it is situated along Pensacola Bay with miles of beautiful scenery and near the base.  Detecting here is intriguing because it not only surrenders bullets from the War Between the States, but buttons from the Second World War.


Although Minelab’s newest detector, the MANTICORE, has been recently released, it’s an instant beast and worth the cost. Having such a technologically advanced detector gives you an edge over other machines, which is important if you want to dig older and deeper items that others have missed.


Happy hunting!