Falcon Gold Probe MD20Price: $220
Avg. Score: 3.83
Based on 12 reviews
Based on 12 reviews
Avg. Durability: 3.13
Avg. Ease of use: 3.75
January 04, 2010I bought the Falcon MD20 last month to sample material I remove from bedrock and also while dry washing. It is very accurate and will pick up tiny pieces of gold in the gold pan. It is easy to distinguish between black sand and gold. Sensitivity is great, and when you dial it in, very accurate. Its very easy to use. I have the belt holster and it seems to work best if placed BEHIND you. That way you wont accidentally adjust the knobs and lose your setting.
A really neat little unit and well worth the money. I also classify and screen my cons when drywashing. I then run it through the pebble sized cons in the pan, then check the fines as well. Some "experts" will tell you a good pinpointer will find the same gold. I'm not buying it. I have compared it to a couple of different ones and it the Falcon blows them away on the small stuff. The only thing I would add are switch covers to prevent the knobs from being moved accidentally during use.
Sean C. from Mojave Desert, CA
April 07, 2008I have owned a Falcon MD20 for about a year now. It is extremely easy to use. It comes in very handy when scanning rocks for gold content. Some also use it for checking crevices for gold. It can detect an extremely small speck of gold at about ¼ of an inch from the probe. The larger the gold the further away it detects it. It picks up a standard shaped 1 ounce nugget at about 4.5 inches.
Another cool feature is when you move the probe towards a sample and it alerts, it is gold. If you move the probe towards a sample and it does not alert, but alerts when you move the probe away, it is not gold. The Falcon will not only detect gold and the method of moving the probe should not be 100% relied upon. It is important to remove magnetic black sands prior to scanning. There is a method that some use where you shovel your material through a classifier in to a bucket. You check the larger objects that did not pass through the classifier with the falcon. You then commence scooping the material from the bucket on to a shallow flat bottom plastic pan.
Before you check the pan, you must remove the magnetic sands with a magnet. It is a slow process but very effective and you do not need to lug around heavy equipment or water.
Falcon sells a hip holster, but I found that when ever I was bending down or twisting, I was accidentally bumping the knob adjustments. You must also be very careful not to pull the cable. I have never had a problem with it, but the way the cable enters the unit looks questionable and not very strong. I dropped my Falcon from a height of about 4 feet on to bedrock and it stopped working. However, Falcon repaired the unit at no cost. Since then I manufactured a little foam protection/holding case. Overall I am very happy with the Falcon and look forward to future developments. Key points are removing the magnetic black sand and treating the unit with care.
Don from Arizona