FIELD TEST

White's Sl Series Of Detectors
By Reginald G. Sniff
From Page 26
August, 1989 issue of Lost Treasure

N ew for 1989, the SL series are the latest additions to Whites line of detectors. Developed by introducing distinctively new features into the already proven Eagle II, 6000/DI Pro Plus, and the 5900/DI Pro Plus, the new detectors in the Sl series are designated the Eagle II SL, 6000/DI Pro Plus SL, and the 5900/DI Plus SL.
Each mode! contains all the features of the corresponding named Pro Plus and Eagle II models including the new 9-la inch search coil and the transmit boost circuitry. In addition, they have new features that enhance the detectors depth capabilities, looks, and comfort of operation.
(For simplicity, the models will be called the 5900 SL, the 600 SL
and the Eagle II SL throughout the rest of this report.)
Upon their arrival, I anxiously assembled the detectors and in minutes, I had all three ready to operate. The two hardest parts of the assembly were opening the boxes and trying to figure out what it do with the two Velcro strips that came with each unit Next on the agenda was sitting down and reading all three owners manuals, a procedure highly recommended with any new machine.

NEW FEATURES
The first new feature is the introduction the Signal Balance control. Essentially, this feature could be called the ultimate in sensitivity control. When set at minimum (on

the 5900 SL and the 6000 SL), all but the most severe interference problems can be minimized, however, a significant loss in depth capabilities can occur at this setting.
The Eagle II SL is a little different. The preset position on the control is the minimum setting and any adjustment from preset will result in increased sensitivity.
If reduced sensitivity is necessary, the Eagle II SL allows the operator several alternatives. The reduction can be done by adjusting the individual AC and/or DC sensitivity settings via the programming system.
If a problem still exists, the transmit power can switched from normal to high mineral also reducing the sensitivity. Because the signal balance control is always active, the control can be adjusted for optimum operation with any combination of other adjustments.
When the signal balance control is advanced to maximum on any of the three models, dramatic increases in depth are possible. However, due to the extreme increase in sensitivity, the maximum setting can cause erratic operations to occur.
The preset positions of the signal balance control were selected to give excellent overall response over a wide range of conditions, however, to fully utilize the potential of the detector, this control should be adjusted for maximum depth capabilities where conditions allow.
Proper adjustment of the signal balance control to achieve the maximum depth with minimum problems can only be done through experimentation. Specific influences,
such as electrical interference, soil condition, and amounts of trash, will determine the best settings.
The second and the most visible new feature is the physical design of the detectors. The new 5 stem and the relocation of the control housing are designed for maximum comfort. With this design, not only is fatigue greatly reduced, but a more precise control of the coil movement over the ground is possible.
After giving the detectors a brief handling test, I have to admit that Whites gave a lot of thought to their new design. Mounting the control housing under the stem to counterbalance the weight of the coil makes the detectors very comfortable to operate.
The arm rest is wide enough to accommodate the largest arm, and is adjustable forward or backward to compensate for various arm lengths. In addition, the armrest has provisions for Velcro strap (included) to hold the arm securely in the rest.
Once the arm is strapped into the rest, little effort is needed by the wrist or hand to control the machine. The detector almost becomes an extension of the arm.
One other significant change in the physical appearance is the color of the detectors. Gone are Whites traditional blue and silver colors. Instead, both the detector housing and the stem are a rich, gloss-black color. With the white lettering on the black housing, the new models are quite impressive in appearance.

TEST OBJECTIVES
Because of time and weather constraints, I decided to give each detector a brief adequate workout to determine capabilities under three very different ground (mineralization) conditions.
The tests produced some rather dramatic differences in operations and results. Because all three detectors have similar characteristics, only significant differences of individual traits are emphasized. Furthermore,
important quirks and adjustments both good and bad are noted. Because most people hunt in the discriminate mode, all future references to signals are discriminate signals unless specified otherwise.

EXTREMELY MINERALIZED
CONDITIONS
With reasonable knowledge of each detector at
hand, I took all three detectors outside to see how they would perform under extremely mineralized ground conditions.
All controls were set to preset and each detector was ground balanced following the recommended procedures. On the Eagle I! SL and the 6000 SL, ground balance is basically automatic.
Initially the machine is air tuned and then ground tuned. The procedure is
as easy as flicking a switch (on the 6000 SL) or pushing the designated points on the key pad (Eagle II SL). On the 5900 SL, a manual adjustment of a ten- turn control is needed.
Checking the ground balance displayed that perfect balance was unobtainable on all three machines. Rapid up-and-down movement while in the all-metal mode yielded a false signal on the Eagle II SL. Under such adverse ground conditions, this characteristic is not unreasonable, and has been common with other very sensitive detectors.
Maximum depth of detection is obtained when the ground balance is as close to perfect as possible. If, under extreme ground mineralization conditions, the ground balance is dramatically incorrect, false signals can occur and a loss of depth is possible. This condition can occur if the machine is turned on and no ground balance procedure followed.
Reducing the signal balance control on the 6000 SL and the 5900 SL did reduce ground balance variations to a minimum, while on the Eagle II
SL, reducing the sensitivity had the same effect.
Actual testing of known targets began with all settings at preset and the detectors properly ground balanced. The main target I wanted to check was a dime buried at a depth of 6 1/2 inches. Because of the extreme mineralization and surrounding trash, this one coin had previously proven to be extremely difficult to pinpoint with any detector.
None of the
three units detected the dime
with consistency. Increasing the signal balance control helped significantly, but none of the detectors gave accurate target VDI indication. Both the 6000 SL and the 5900 SL would VDI the coin anywhere between a dime and full-meter scale on different passes. The Eagle II SLs readout varied between 75 and 95, with 90 to 95 being the most common. Further testing indicated that the adverse soil conditions caused targets deeper than four to five inches to read higher than actual on the SL models. This, however, has been the case on all other detectors I have tested. Considering the ground conditions and previous personal testing experience, I felt the target VDI

indications given by all three SL detectors to be some of the most accurate I have encountered.
A nearby yard was designated as the first real test site. I selected the Eagle II SL and began to search the area. The signal balance control was increased above preset and ground balance was done. After several minutes of constant rejections, I began questioning the validity of the response. Since this was a test, I began to dig the rejected targets.
It became apparent by the number of nuts, bolts, washers, and bottle tops, that somebody had enjoyed dismantling a car while drinking beer in this yard. Finally, I received a positive (screw cap) indication. Checking the depth indicated the target was about five inches deep. At about a depth of 4 1/2 inches, I found, of all things, a .58 caliber mime ball.
A few feet away I received my second good signal. This target read between a pull tab and a screw cap and at a depth of about six inches. At a depth of about 5 1/2 inches, I recovered an 1883 V nickel. The only other targets of interest found were a 1944 penny at a depth of about four inches and a 1977 penny near the surface.
A different yard was selected to test the 6000 SL. Again all controls were preset and the signal balance was advanced somewhat. Once the ground balance was complete, I began hunting. Within a few minutes, I had unearthed a 1942 penny from a depth of about 41/2 inches. A few minutes later, a 1942 Mercury
dime was uncovered from a depth similar to the penny. The third coin recovered was a 1964 Roosevelt dime from a depth of about three inches.
Because of the dry rocky soil conditions, probing or use of a Hole Hog was impossible. Therefore, rather than create a bad impression, a couple of positive targets deeper that six inches were left behind. The last good target that gave a strong penny/ dime indication turned out be a ladys silver turquoise ring recovered from a depth of three inches. All of the above coins found with the 6000 SL gave accurate depth indication and proper VDIs.
A third yard was selected to test the 5900 SL. Again controls were adjusted to preset and a quick manual ground balance was done. Unfortunately, this yard contained more trash items (primarily nails) than either of the previous two yards. After several minutes of searching, I had recovered only four pennies, the deepest a 1942 at a depth of about five inches. The 5900 SL also displayed accurate indications of both depth and VDI except for the deeper

penny which VDId as a quarter. Although the selection of impressive finds was limited, the testing under extreme ground mineralization did give a good indication of the detectors capabilities. Each model was extremely stable in both the discriminate and pinpoint modes. The extremely strong response to deep targets in the pinpoint (all metals) mode by all three detectors is very impressive. The Eagle II, however, with all the different ways to increase sensitivity, really excels in this mode.
Under the severe ground conditions, a couple of tricks helped in detecting those deep coins that appeared to be beyond the range of the normal discriminate mode. With the Eagle, programming the negative numbers between 86 and -96 as well as +95 allowed the detector to give more consistent audio indications on the extremely deep coins. Generally, very deep coins would cause the VDI indications on the digital readout to vary between 72 and 95.
On the 6000 SL and the 5900 SL, the GEB Sat mode was selected and the meter was observed for a fairly consistent meter reading between 85 to 100. Once a target was found that met the above indications. A quick check of depth was done. Next, the physical size was checked in the all-metal mode (coins being relatively small).
If all the above indications meet. the right requirements, the target was dug. Using the above procedures, considerably more trash targets will be dug, but more of the deeper coins will also be recovered.
GOLD NUGGET TEST
Because the Whites line of detectors has been used in prospecting, I wanted to see how the machines responded to a small nugget under adverse soil conditions.
Burying a 3 1/2-grain nugget about an inch deep as the test target, I proceeded to give each detector a workout. All three units gave a reasonably good indication in the all metal mode (GEB) with both the six inch and the 9 1/2-inch coil. Although both coils gave a good signal, the six-inch coil gave a stronger response on the tiny target
Advancing the signal balance control generated a louder audio response. However, the variation in audio (in the all-metal mode) be-

cause or me severe ground mineralization became more noticeable.
The Eagle II SL was tried in the prospecting mode next. The tiny nugget was detected with remarkable clarity.
Because the 6000 SL can be ground balanced in the TR mode, a brief experiment was done to see how easily the machine could be ground balanced not using the auto trac system. Although the control was obviously touchier than the 10-turn control on the 5900 DL, ground balance was easily obtained. Again the detection of the nugget was very positive.
The 5900 SL, with its 10-turn ground balance control makes for an ideal nugget machine and displayed this fact while detecting the little nugget.

MEDIUM MINERALIZED
CONDITONS
A ghost town located near Walsenburg, Cob., was selected for the next phase of testing. With soil conditions considerably better(about medium mineralization). This area also gave a good indication of how the machines would respond in the
ghost-town environment
The first thing I did was a buried penny test with all machines with both the 6- and 9 1/2-inch coils. With the signal balance control at maximum and using the six-inch coil, a depth limit of about 8 1/2 inches was reached by all detectors.
Next the standard coil was tried, and this time all three detectors again detected the coin
reliably. However, by selecting hot rock rejection on the 6000 SL or the Eagle II SL, there was a tendency to reject the extremely deep targets.
A quick check of the ground balance indicated that the dramatic difference in soil conditions all but eliminated the difficulties in ground balancing. Each unit was a snap to set up. The only related problem experienced was that the ground balance on the Eagle II SL and the

penny which VDId as a quarter. Although the selection of impressive finds was limited, the testing under extreme ground mineralization did give a good indication of the detectors capabilities. Each model was extremely stable in both the discriminate and pinpoint modes. The extremely strong response to deep targets in the pinpoint (all metals) mode by all three detectors is very impressive. The Eagle II, however, with all the different ways to increase sensitivity, really excels in this mode.
Under the severe ground conditions, a couple of tricks helped in detecting those deep coins that appeared to be beyond the range of the normal discriminate mode. With the Eagle, programming the negative numbers between -86and-96aswell
as +95 allowed the detector to give more consistent audio indications on the extremely deep coins. Generally, very deep coins would cause the VDI indications on the digital readout to vary between 72 and 95.
On the 6000 SL and the 5900 SL, the GEB Sat mode was selected and the meter was observed for a fairly consistent meter
reading between 85 to 100. Once a target was found that met the above indications. A quick check of depth was done. Next, the physical size was checked in the all-metal mode (coins being relatively small).
If all the above indications meet. the right requirements, the target was dug. Using the above procedures, considerably more trash targets will be dug, but more of the deeper coins will also be recovered.
GOLD NUGGET TEST
Because the Whites line of detectors has been used in prospecting, I wanted to see how the machines responded to a small nugget under adverse soil conditions.
Burying a 3 1/2-grain nugget about an inch deep as the test target, I proceeded to give each detector a workout. All three units gave a reasonably good indication in the all metal mode (GEB) with both the six inch and the 9 1/2-inch coil. Although both coils gave a good signal, the six-inch coil gave a stronger response on the tiny target
Advancing the signal balance control generated a louder audio response. However, the variation in audio (in the all-metal mode) be-

cause of the severe ground mineralization became more noticeable.
The Eagle II SL was tried in the prospecting mode next. The tiny nugget was detected with remarkable clarity.
Because the 6000 SL can be ground balanced in the TR mode, a brief experiment was done to see how easily the machine could be ground balanced not using the auto trac system. Although the control
was obviously touchier than the 10-turn control on the 5900 DL, ground balance was easily obtained. Again the detection of the nugget was very positive.
The 5900 SL, with its 10-turn ground balance controlmakes foran ideal nugget machine and displayed this fact while detecting the little nugget.

MEDIUM MINERALIZED
CONDITONS
A ghost town located near Walsenburg, Cob., was selected for the next phase of testing. With soil conditions considerably better (about medium mineralization). This area also gave a good indication of how the machines would respond in the
ghost-town environment
The first thing I did was a buried penny test with all machines with both the 6- and 9 1/2-inch coils. With the signal balance control at maximum and using the six-inch coil, a depth limit of about 8 1/2 inches was reached by all detectors.
Next the standard coil was tried, and this time all three detectors again detected the coin
reliably. However, by selecting hot rock rejection on the 6000 SL or the Eagle II SL, there was a tendency to reject the extremely deep targets.
A quick check of the ground balance indicated that the dramatic difference in soil conditions all but eliminated the difficulties in ground balancing. Each unit was a snap to set up. The only related problem experienced was that the ground balance on the Eagle II SL and the

6000 SL had a tendency to shift in areas having excessive rusty trash targets. By initially obtaining proper balance and then turning off the auto trac, this problem was resolved.
All three detectors worked exceptionally well even in the trashy areas. Discrimination of some of the rusty targets was a little tricky at first. I quickly found that varying the sweep speed on successive passes would yield dramatic changes on the target VDI and the audio response on most of the iron objects.
A quick check of the physical size of the target in the all-metal mode (GEB) also eliminated the larger iron objects that had a tendency to give a positive VDI indication.
A search of the area giving each detector approximately equal time yielded a handful of non-ferrous objects such as shot shell cases, bullets, copper rivets, and parts of watches and harmonicas. They were recovered from depths ranging between one and eight inches.
One 1893 Indian head penny was found with the 5900 SL at a depth of about 4 inches. The 6000 SL positively detected a 1920 penny and a cheap ring both at a depth similar to the previous coin.
On the way back home, a quick stop was made at an old football field. Because this area has seen a lot of hunting by other detector enthusiasts, I didnt expect to find much. The 5900 SL was selected because it
still had the six-inch coil attached. After about an hour of hunting, I was amazed at the number of coins detected. Included were three silver dimes and 10 wheat backs plus a handful of newer coins, with most of the coins coming from depths ranging between three and seven inches.
The drastic change in soil conditions made a dramatic difference in virtually all operations of the detectors. Both the depth capabilities and the target VDI accuracy improved immensely.

LOW MINERALIZED TEST
The last major phase of the testing was done at a detector clinic held by the Pikes Peak Treasure Hunters Club. The site was the Meadowlake Airport located several miles east of Colorado Springs.
At the site, numerous types of coins and other objects were buried at various depths to five inches, and markers were placed near the buried objects indicating type of object and depth.
The objective was to give both new and experienced detector users the opportunity to check and compare machines. With low mineralization and the soil a little damp, the conditions were nearly ideal.
All three detectors were set at preset and run through the paces checking the various targets and depths with both the six inch- and the standard 9 112-inch coils. Each
detector responded smoothly and accurately. Target VDIs and depth indications varied very little from the known target information even on the five-inch deep targets.
Next, tests were done to check depth capabilities using a penny and a silver dime as targets. Both the penny and
the dime were buried to a depth of eight inches. With the signal control advanced, all three machines reliably picked up the penny with both the six-inch and the standard coils.
All three detectors could pick up the dime reliably with the 9112-inch coil. The 6000 SL and the 5900 SL would give an occasional indication using the smaller coils while the Eagle still gave a reliable signal.
Finally, the dime was buried at nine inches. The three SL models (with the 9 1/2-inch coil) were the only detectors that reliably detected the dime.
As expected, none of the machines properly VDI the target at the eight-to nine-inch depth. Also, with hot rock rejection on, both the 6000 SL and the Eagle!! SL rejected the coin.

CONCLUSION
Each model has its own advantages. The 5900 SL displayed about the same sensitivity as the 6000 SL and has the ground balance control for those who prefer to have that absolute control. The 6000 SL has excellent depth, and with the auto trac ground balance, is practically a turn-on-and-go machine.
The Eagle II SL is unique. With the additional features added to the Eagle II model, almost any type of detector can be created out of this one unit. Because of the programming capabilities, about every conceivable adjustment a person might like to make to their detector is possible.
Furthermore, the six-inch coil is a wise investment. Suprisingly, little depth is lost and an ease of use in very trashy areas make this coil the ideal choice where such conditions exist.
In conclusion, I have to say that Whites has developed three winners. The quality of workmanship displayed by the SL series is impressive. The outstanding depth capabilities and the comfortable design make any one these units a wise choice.



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