As I was assembling the Bounty Hunter Quick Draw II, I began to think of my very first motion detector I purchased almost 19 years ago. That first motion machine was a Bounty Hunter also, named the Red Baron.
Boy, have things changed. I paid almost $300 for that first motion detector. The Quick Draw II sells for $229.95. The batteries in that Red Baron weighed almost as much as this new detector, complete. The old "Baron" had to be swung fast to obtain any significant depth. The Quick Draw needs only minimal movement.
Warranted for 5 years, the Quick Draw II is packed with many features only found on more expensive detectors. Powered by two 9 volt transistor batteries, this new detector has such features as visual target ID, 3 tone audio ID, depth indication, adjustable and auto notch. The search coil is an 8 inch open faced coil of concentric design.
The face plate of the control housing on the Quick Draw II is well laid out and clearly marked. Visual indication of the probable target ID and depth indication are accomplished by 2 LCDs. A target and its depth are indicated by easy to see arrows displays that point to the appropriate information.
The one feature lacking on the Quick Draw II that is found on more expensive units is a no-motion all metals (pinpoint) mode. Iron objects can be detected by merely reducing the discrimination level, but motion is required for detection.
Strange as it might sound, two very seldom talked about items deserve mentioning, the box the Quick Draw II came in and the owner's manual. Both display a unique level of forethought and quality. The box is both an attractive display and a unique reference manual displaying the features of the detector. The manual does a very good job of explaining the operation of the controls.
The Quick Draw II has three different modes of operation, the DISC/ALL METAL, the NOTCH, and the AUTO NOTCH mode. Changing modes is accomplished by pressing one of three clearly marked touch pads located near the bottom of the control housing face plate.
Also located on the front of the control panel are two knob type adjustable controls, the Sensitivity control, which controls the depth of detection in all modes, and the Disc/Notch control. This latter control adjusts the discrimination level when in the DISC/ALL METAL mode. As the discrimination level is increased (turned clockwise) objects having lower conductivity such as nails, foil, nickels, etc., are not audibly detected. Their presence will, however, be displayed on the visual display.
When the operator selects the NOTCH mode, the Disc/Notch control changes from a discrimination level control to a notch level control. What this means is, when in the notch mode, most non-ferrous objects are detected except those items that fall into the notch rejection zone. The Disc/Notch control now moves this narrow rejection zone.
For example, if a person elects to notch out pull tabs, he or she would place a typical pull tab on the ground, select Notch, and then slowly adjust the Disc/Notch control to the point where the undesirable object no longer emits an audio signal. At this time, most pull tabs as well as most ferrous (iron) objects and some tinfoil are ignored, but nickels and other coin type objects will be heard.
If a person wanted to ignore a wider band of objects such as pull tabs and screwcaps, they can do so by selecting the AUTO NOTCH mode. In this mode, the Disc/Notch adjustment now adjusts the width of the notch zone. The notch zone automatically begins just above the nickel zone, and ends at some point higher, determined by the setting of the Disc/Notch control.
Testing in the Field:
Basic testing began at my home. I began by adjusting the sensitivity control to maximum, the discrimination level at minimum. With these settings what I attempted to find was a dime I have buried at 6 1/2 inches deep. Surprisingly, the Quick Draw II found the target. As I have found with most other target ID type detectors, the target ID of the Quick Draw II did not read accurately on the dime. Instead, like most other machines it had a tendency to read high, but the indication would bounce around between pulltab and a dollar depending how well I centered the coil over the target.
The greatest target ID accuracy occurred when I was dead center over the known target. I have found all target ID detectors to give inaccurate readings on very deep targets, however, the Quick Draw II would read lower (into the pull tab range) more frequently than some higher priced units I have tested.
The depth indication seemed to follow suit. If I was directly over the target, the depth indication would read in the 6 inch range. However, if I was off to the side somewhat, the target depth would indicate anywhere between 2 inches and 6 inches.
Several other buried targets were tested and gave similar results. The Quick Draw did a great job of sensing all of my typical test targets, but did display varied ID indications as well as depth indications, especially on deeper targets.
The sensitivity was then reduced to about three-fourths of maximum. At this setting the deeper targets vanished but both the ID and depth indications increased in accuracy and consistency.
In all fairness, I have to mention the ground mineralization at this location was about as bad as it gets which can dramatically effect any form of target ID. As such, I expected both ID and depth variances on targets when using the Quick Draw II. The point I am trying to make is one shouldn't rely exclusively on any form of ID, especially in mineralized ground. The Quick Draw II, like every other ID detector I have used will produce inaccurate target information at times.
As mentioned earlier, the Quick Draw II also has audio ID. Although I am familiar with the three tone ID, for somebody just getting started and not familiar with this feature, it takes a bit getting used to. Targets are grouped into 3 distinct audio tones based on their conductivity. Items having lower conductivity such as nickels, foil, and iron objects emit a low tone. The medium tone encompasses targets such as pull tabs, screw caps, and zinc pennies. The high tone indicates copper pennies, silver and clad coins.
During the testing, I found the audio ID indications followed the target ID information. As such, on the deeper objects the detector would emit a variety of tones changing from one to another on different passes. I found that if the target was deep and gave a high tone at least some of the time, it was usually a coin or a piece of copper.
My testing was continued at a couple of nearby parks where I found several dollars in change and one cheap silver ring. Target depth ranged from surface objects to about 6 inches. Any repeatable target signal was carefully tested using a nice slow sweep speed to obtain the most accurate ID information.
Basically, all repeatable targets that indicated a nickel or higher were retrieved. The shallow targets (less than 3 inches in depth) gave the most accurate and consistent ID information. The few nickels I found buried more than an inch or two indicated anywhere from nickel to screw cap depending upon their depth. Again, this is very typical of most target ID detectors I have used.
Because the detector did not have a pinpoint mode, centering in on a target was accomplished by initially detecting the target and then gradually reducing the distance of the side to side swing of the coil until it was only a movement of a couple of inches or so. The target was usually found directly below the inner ring of the searchcoil.
During all testing, targets buried at any depth were sensed in the zone directly below the inner ring of the search coil. This is normal for all motion detectors using a concentric type coil. However, the open face design of the Quick Draw II coil made it easy to actually see the area really scanned.
On the negative side, I found the target and audio ID was not as consistent as more expensive units, but that should be expected considering the significant price difference. I would recommend users retrieve all targets that fall in the nickel through dollar range, at least until they had a good feeling for the instrument.
The only personal drawback I found with the Quick Draw II was the lack of an all-metal no motion pinpoint mode which I am accustomed to using to assist me in determining both the size of the target and its depth. I suspect this feature was sacrificed to obtain the lower price
In summarizing, I found the Quick Draw II provided excellent depth of detection for the price range. Also, because of the extra features such as target ID, audio ID and depth indication, it, it easy to recommend this unit as a very good buy for the person who does not want to spend a lot of money or needs a good economical back up detector.
For more information on the Quick Draw II or any of the other Bounty Hunter instruments, one can call or write to: Bounty Hunter, 11900 Montana Ave., El Paso Texas 79936, (915) 855-4206, On the Internet at: www.detecting.com.