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Pushing the limits

14 Oct

I’ve been thinking about this for a while and I have in the past, lightly touched on the subject. Be warned, this is not going to be your typical post about metal detecting. IT IS about metal detecting; it’s just that it is about the very limits of metal detecting.

Let me give you a little background which at first may seem unrelated but bear with me.

I saw a video about a man named Byron Ferguson, who can hit ANY moving target with his bow and arrows. In the video I saw the man hit a moving aspirin –yes, you read that right, a moving, regular size (very small!) aspirin tablet with an arrow at 45 feet!!!! Byron goes on to explain in the video, that when he is attempting to hit something very small like an aspirin tablet, he first visualizes the arrow hitting the target.  The scientists trying to figure out how he does it, learned that Byron can track a moving target with uncanny accuracy.

Then I saw a video about a young man (now deceased) who lost his sight at the age of two because of cancer. Eventually, the young man, whose name was Ben Underwood, taught himself to use echolocation to see the world around him. He would make a ticking noise with his mouth and use the echo to navigate around, much like a bat. He was tested and was found to be the real deal. Although completely blind, he could skate and ride his bike without any problems. I had already seen a video about a school that adopted this idea and was teaching it to other blind people.

Last, I had heard of something called the World Memory Championship. A man by the name of Dominic O’Brien won it 8 times. The stuff Dominic can do with his memory seems impossible.

I want to point out that these three people are humans like you and I. What they have done is push our normal human abilities to limits others do not think possible. At least in the case of Ben and Dominic, what they do can be taught to other people. I suspect what Byron can do can also be taught to other people but I don’t know that anyone is trying.

What does this have to do with metal detecting? I believe that there is a way to metal detect while in an altered state. If you’re not comfortable with the idea of altered state (and no, I don’t mean high), think of detecting while in a VERY relaxed state. Why do I say this? I have been trying this for a while and it seems that whenever I am successful at maintaining  a very relaxed state while hunting, I always find a silver coin or something cool. I suspect that when I am super relaxed, my brain can process the signals from the detector at a different level. I have an even crazier idea but I will only tell that one to my closest friends, who will (I hope) still be my friends after they hear it.

Anyway, I wonder how many of the super stars of the hobby use techniques like these but are not telling anyone.

Something to think about.

Thank you for looking!

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14 Responses to “Pushing the limits”

  1. Ozarks October 14, 2013 at 4:51 pm #

    You said “,think of detecting while in a VERY relaxed state” I always do, because that is WHY I detect, to be in a relaxed state!

    I get your point, but since I dig all signals above iron, my brain processes each target based on the various tones assigned to each notch range.

    I would imagine that a blind person could more accurately call what targets are before digging based on their enhanced hearing abilities.

    I have become very good at identifying targets before I dig now. This weekend I got a nickle signal, and a lady was watching me dig the plug. She asked “What do you think it is?” I said “Well, the detector said nickle but I bet it’s a pop tab.” Sure enough, it was a pop tab. She said “How did you know?” I simply said “It’s just experienced noticing the nuances of the various tones.” She walked away sayign “All that for a pop tab.” I laughed and said “That’s how it goes sometimes.”

    Was my ability to identify the target based on my relaxed state or was it simply experience separating the different tone?”

    Good write up, way to get others thinking!

    • pulltabMiner October 14, 2013 at 9:35 pm #

      Ozarks, yeah, that’s the idea. We get really good at calling the target because our brains/ears have been trained. So what if we can take that further, what would happen then? That’s what I was aiming at with the post. It will be interesting to see how much better you are at this 5 year from now. I bet it will seem like magic to other people

  2. stevessunkentreasures October 14, 2013 at 5:07 pm #

    I wanna know because I think mental state is a huge factor. Spill the beans errr brains!

    • pulltabMiner October 14, 2013 at 9:36 pm #

      The mental state. That’s it my friend. Getting in the ‘zone’. We will talk about this more you and I.

      • stevessunkentreasures October 14, 2013 at 9:39 pm #

        Maybe that is good road trip conversation… BTW you never shared your opinion about location..

  3. Ozarks October 14, 2013 at 10:17 pm #

    Mental state IS a huge factor! Just like everythign else in life. If you wake up thinking “Man, this is going to be a bad day, guess what, you’re right!”

  4. lawdog1 October 15, 2013 at 11:01 am #

    Detecting with your pants down is ILLEGAL and I won’t have any of it! 🙂

    Very intriguing post………I can’t wait for the rest of the story!

    • pulltabMiner October 15, 2013 at 3:09 pm #

      LOL! lawdog1, I think we have different ideas as to what ‘very relaxed’ means… I will pick this up again after I clean out the parks of silver using my new 11″ coil (that is, if I get it anytime soon)

  5. Jake October 16, 2013 at 4:53 pm #

    Steve, I bet you could get in the “zone” and push the limits if you would attach about 8 of those Loaner Detectors together and start swinging.
    I sure do agree about your mindset playing a huge part, and I second David on the keeping the pants up.

  6. samandnoah October 18, 2013 at 2:04 pm #

    Yes, the zone. Most people who participated in athletics in high school, or play recreational sports like tennis notice that sometimes things “just click”. Most have experienced at some point. With practice/training, you can improve your ability to get there. I learned that in high school and would “envision” what would happen, how I would respond, and play that over and over. I haven’t tried applying that with MDing, but it’s a great thought. I know that I’ve felt in the zone, but haven’t tried to put myself there. Upon reflection, the truth is, I am often tense/frustrated because I WANT TO FIND SOMETHING. And then leave disappointed. Would love to hear more from you on this.

  7. lawdog1 October 20, 2013 at 12:18 pm #

    I get it, David! This “higher level” you speak of is probably what has kept me alive the last 20 years. It is a higher awareness, being in tune with your surroundings, not letting the slightest change in your environment escape you. It is if – then thinking in advance of the act or lack thereof. It’s condition yellow. I’m just not sure how to equate it with or work it into a “relaxed state”. It makes me tired.

    • lawdog1 October 20, 2013 at 12:20 pm #

      As a side note, I typed my comment with my pants down! 🙂

      • pulltabMiner October 21, 2013 at 10:30 am #

        Well, I would say having your pants down while you do an activity is a good start. LOL!
        I can sort of achieve the ‘state’ if I consciously relax. It’s all about the breathing for me. I tell you, whenever I can successfully (it doesn’t work 100% of the time for me…yet) get in the ‘zone’, all the noises coming from the detector, which I would normally not even listen to, become meaningful information. Now, I find things when I am just swinging wildly by sheer luck, but it is rare when I can get in the zone to not find something cool. There is another level to this and that’s when things really go crazy. I’ve had a few experiences while in the ‘zone’ that will make me sound coo koo if I tell people so I won’t. You and Steve already know I am crazy so I have mentioned this to you already.

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