A Tesoro detector in black? After opening the usual orange and white Tesoro box that had been delivered via UPS the evening before, I thought I was seeing things as the Tesoro detector I was viewing was black with a gray faceplate. Time for the first cup of the morning and a second look! While drinking my first two cups of coffee and scanning the operator instructions, I thought about it some more and pulled one of my Tesoro detectors out of storage and compared it to the Euro Sabre. Nope, my color perception was still good. The new one was black and mine was still brown!

FEATURES

The Euro Sabre, furnished with a 12 x 10 coil, is primarily a relic machine, but as you will see further down in this article, it can also be used for coins, jewelry, gold and probably caches, although I didn't find any caches. Further good news is that all the current Tesoro coils, except those designed for water and gold, will work quite well with the Euro Sabre.

The operator controls are as follows: the upper left control is the Ground Balance, the lower left toggle switch is the Mode and Battery Test, the center switch is the Iron ID, the lower right control is the Discriminate Level, the center right control is the On-Off/Sensitivity, and the upper right control is the Threshold.

A brief overview of the controls is for those unfamiliar with the terms and a reminder for the old pros. The Ground Balance knob gives the operator a way to adjust the detector so that the ground is viewed as neutral. The Mode switch allows for the selection of All Metal or Disc. The switch also serves as a Battery Test in the spring-loaded left most position. (Several beeps indicate a good battery and 1 or no beeps indicate it's time to hunt for the spare 9-volt battery. Study the operator manual for some precautions before installing or replacing the battery.)

The All Metal Mode is very slow motion auto-tune and VCO, which means that when a target is approached in this mode, both the pitch and loudness of the audio will increase. This allows almost a no-motion type pinpoint. It also allows one to use the All Metal Mode for searching without worrying about missing targets due to tuning out the target with an improper sweep speed.

The Iron ID switch is a new control for most treasure hunters and operates in the following manner. It is to be used in the Disc Mode with the Discriminate Level set to Min. It won't work if the Discriminate Level is above Iron. The operator has a choice of 2 modes of operation. The center position is Off, and the left position of the switch is Iron Blank Mode. Any iron detected in this mode will be blanked or ignored. In the right position, any iron detected will be identified with tones.

With the Iron ID switch in the Audio position and the Discriminate Level at Min, the identification will be as follows: iron targets produce a low tone and non-iron targets produce the regular or higher tone. If the iron target is irregular in shape and/or has holes in it, the audio will be a multi high-low or rolling tone. I dug some targets based on this information and all were identified as stated in the manual.

My opinion on this feature is that a relic hunter can use the Iron ID position and correctly identify most iron. One can then make an educated guess as to the size of the target and whether it should be dug or not. Used in this manner, one might very well come up with gun parts and other desirable targets, such as grape shot or cannon balls. If used for coin hunting with the Iron ID switch in the Off position, the detector performs pretty much like other Tesoro detectors with similar features.

Another situation for using the Iron ID feature would be if you were digging small iron targets when searching for nuggets in the All Metal Mode. While I didn't actually search for nuggets, I did a simulated test with some very small iron targets and a small nugget. I could identify the iron and still detect the nugget. Since the soil minerals may be much greater in the area in which nuggets are found, you will have to try this to see if it works for you. You also might wish to use a smaller coil. I tried a 7" coil and the results were more pronounced.

The Discriminate Level has all metal acceptance when set to Min. The On-Off/Sensitivity control has a MAXBoost area for extra sensitivity if conditions permit it being set to above 10 (should be set at highest level that maintains stable operation). The Threshold control is for a pleasant background level when using All Metal to pinpoint targets. (A reminder: the Threshold level can be set higher than normal and the detector will "hit harder" on targets in the Disc Mode. If you pinpoint in Disc Mode, the Threshold can be left at its higher level, but if you want to pinpoint in All Metal, the level should be reduced to make sure you hear the audio increase to properly center the target.)

The Euro Sabre has the usual 3-piece pole associated with the ÁMax line of detectors. The ¼-inch stereo headphone jack is on the rear panel of the control box. I weighed the detector with the 12 x 10 concentric coil and it came in at 2 lbs. and 15 oz. The operating frequency is 10.6 kHz and the audio frequency is 630 Hz.

FIELD TEST

After some tests in my coin/relic garden, with what I thought to be better than average results, it was time to give it a few hours in the field. I headed to a nearby softball complex with a large schoolyard on the same property. I wasn't familiar with the Iron ID control so I intended to leave it in the Off position. My thinking was that a coil that big should ferret out a few coins that others had missed over the years. I wasn't disappointed. I came up with more coins than I normally do in that area. Some were probably recently lost but quite a few were in the 5-inch plus range and a few were on-edge or at a better than 45 degree angle. Darn it, all were dated 1965 or later with the exception of a lone 1954 Rosie dime. Total take for the outing was 17 quarters, 24 dimes including the silver one, and a dozen or so pennies including 3 wheat pennies. Remembering my last few outings there, I was satisfied.


Some of the coins found with the Euro Sabre.

OK, I finally took the Euro to a pounded Civil War relic site. But it had also seen other activities over the years. It was a pasture type area, and the finds were few and far between. I spent about 4 hours there on a hot April day. A total of 11 .58 caliber CW era bullets and several whatnots were my take for the outing. The bullets were in the 4-10 inch range. A couple of the whatnots, including what appeared to be a hinge from an old fashioned trunk, were in the 12-inch plus range. No clues as to what some of the targets were, but a couple proved to me that this detector would detect as deep as I cared to dig.


The mini balls and other targets I found relic hunting.

At this site, I used the Iron ID in the Audio position and dug several targets that identified as iron. On a few targets either the detector or I couldn't make up our minds as to whether the target was iron or not. With only one or two exceptions, the targets were iron. A toy pistol was to the point of gaining weight with rust. I still don't know for sure whether the pistol was iron or some base metal with iron as part of its makeup. It was identified with a low tone only. In air, it sometimes would produce a low tone and sometimes a high tone. My opinion was that the shape and depth of a given target might affect the accuracy of the identification.

A trip to a local park was well worth the effort. This park had also seen more than its share of detectors over the years, including some that I had used. This trip again proved to be quite lucrative. With the exception of a lone Mercury dime, the coins were either clad or copper. I hit multiple coin targets 4 times, and without exception, there were 2 quarters and 1 dime in each hole. I wondered if school lunches (school across the street) in the late sixties or early seventies were 60 cents. The targets with multiple coins were in the 5-8 inch range.

SUMMARY

Although the 12 x 10 coil makes the Euro Sabre a little nose heavy in my opinion, the size gives a little more depth as compared to smaller coils. It doesn't seem to lose any sensitivity to small targets. As with all Tesoro coils, this one pinpoints exactly where it should. Targets will be dead center in the coil's center opening. Target masking isn't near the problem I thought it would be with such a large coil.

One can cover a lot of soil in a few hours. My opinion is that this coil must be used with a slower sweep speed for best results (not a snail's pace but 50 to 60 percent of what I consider to be a normal Tesoro sweep speed). It is a good detector by any standard, and when properly used, it will undoubtedly prove to be one of the better relic detectors available. As a dealer, I wouldn't hesitate for a minute to recommend it to a potential customer. A coin hunter using it in any area that isn't super trashy will be pleasantly surprised at the extra depth that targets are detected.

(NOTE: Ty owns and operates Brook's Detectors in the Montgomery, AL area and will answer any questions about the Euro Sabre or other Tesoro detector. He can be reached at 334-281-1806 or via email at kenoTy@att.net.)