Tesoro metal detectors, the first uk cibola and vaquero review
Jan 2008
 Tesoro metal detectors have been one of the most popular makes since the early detecting days, when I heard about the new Cibola and Vaquero it left me somewhat disappointed, it would appear that Tesoro have re invented the Rapier, just added a frequency shift and changed colour schemes. The idea didn't interest me so I put it to the back of my mind, as tesoro Tejon was still going to be the flagship of the range.

After the machine had been released in the US I started hearing some really good things about it. I called a dealer friend in the US to get some un bias information. He said don't compare the Cibola with older models, this is one of the new "hot" Tesoros based on the all new Tejon circuitry. So basically it has Tejon power without the extra features.

I met with Steve at a local field which has produced some nice Roman finds, many machines can be unstable here Steve uses a Tejon, this showdown would be an ideal test to see if the Cibola's performance is really matched to the Animal.
The set up was simple, switch on, turn the sensitivity up to 10, press the pin point button and set the threshold so I could hear a slight hum, set the discrimination to the Iron position...and search.

The Cibola ran very smooth I was impressed on how well it behaved,  high sensitivity caused no problems at all, even when turned well into the red section. On this site we run the Tejon's at 6 to keep them tame, the Cibola's Iron rejection was fantastic, I felt the pre set "Iron" mark was a little high so I lowered it slightly, now it was set to how I preferred to search, I could hear the iron as a broken sound but not rejected, a good target was always smooth and repeatable.

 Having experimented with the discrimination I was starting to realise how different the Cibola actually was. With a disc setting of zero it would only reject the smallest of nails as you raise the setting it started to reject bigger Iron without loosing small targets, I can only describe it as  "progressive" iron rejection. I found an Ideal setting was between the minimum and the word "iron", when checking a signal it was very easy to confirm the target by simply thumbing the disc to the Iron and listen for the audio change.
 What Tesoro have actually done is given the user a bigger scale or "finer tuning" of the Iron rejection, which will be a real bonus when searching an ancient site and wishing to reject a particular sized nail.

Throughout our 3 hour search there was not one occasion where the Tejon out shone the Cibola, every target was checked, depth was the same we both got caught out on the same pieces of misshaped large iron, We felt the Tejon gave a harder hit on the very small and deeper targets, the Cibola gave a soft quiet tone.
This is where our next discovery was made.
 The threshold tone was originally set to a slight hum (with the pin point pressed in), which gave a nice audio indication of depth, However if it was turned up the Cibola was transformed, small and deep targets were sharp and loud, the field was almost alive with clicks and spits, this well behaved machine had just turned on the attitude, in fact if the threshold was turned fully up the circuitry became unstable, its almost like a second sensitivity.

One disadvantage of running a high threshold tone is that the pin- point VCO is not so precise. With a little practice you can find the "sweet spot" where there is a fine balance between a loud and usable threshold.
My Cibola finds consisted of 1 Roman, 1 Charles 1st hammered, 2 Strap ends, at least 15 pieces of assorted lead and dross, not bad for a quick test. I gave the machine to Steve his opinion is never clouded and always honest and to the point, he first commented on how light it was, he was very impressed with the performance and Iron rejection he gave it the thumbs up, another point he commented on was the Cibolas ability to find good targets in and around Iron he pointed out a hole which he had just retrieved a button from, still with iron sound much deeper, the "see through" capabilities were excellent, this machine requires a slow sweep speed for best results a little like the Lobo.

Although I was impressed with this machine I needed another opinion, because its so easy to get excited about something new and loose the reality of things.  I e-mailed a friend Tony who lives up north but travels this way regularly with work.
Tone is very critical about machines and puts them through some almost impossible tests, things that most of us would not even think about, he is looking for tiny Saxon coins in bad soil littered with nails where a mere 2 inches depth is considered acceptable. I asked him to drop in next time he was down as I had something to show him and to bring a bucket of that nasty soil he keeps telling me about. Tony turned up 2 days later with his test pieces, machines and soil. We compared the Cibola against all our machines, several different tests, coins next to iron, gold next to nails, tiny Saxon coins buried in bad Iron contaminated soil which stained your hand black when you touched it. The Cibola was easily on par with the best available I got the seal of approval from Tony Thumbs up that was good enough for me.
Summing up
Yes this is a new "hot" Tesoro, no bells or whistles just raw power combined with good Iron rejection...what more can a relic hunter ask for, its been really hard keeping a lid on this one during testing.
A silver roman coin found with the cibolaRoman denari found with the Tesoro

My best find so far,a Silver Roman.
Geta son of Septimius Severus 209-212 Ad

picture of a roman denari

This is one of the tests we tried with the Cibola
Recovery speed and discrimination
Cibola test reject the nail
Reject a large nail
The Cibola found the coin next to Iron
Place a coin as close to the Iron as possible, the tesoro cibola easily located the hammered coin with a clean signal less than 1cm away from the Iron.
Impressive....I think so, even better when you think the Tesoro Cibola only costs £399.00
will your metal detector pass this test.
The badly mineralised soil test
Searching badly mineralised soilIron contaminated soil
This badly mineralised soil is laced with tiny Iron particles,
most "top of the range" metal detectors will not even find a small coin less than 2 inches deep. The Cibola was in the top 3 we tested.

Hi Gary,
     Once again, I must thank you both for your kind hospitality last Saturday, tea, sarnies & all.. It was great to try out the new Vaquero. I must say even though it's a manual ground adjust version of Cibola, it sounds sharp on the Cibola's softer target signature.. The manual ground adjust 3.3/4 turn is very easy & quick to set up & should not present any difficulty in setting up for those who shy away from hands on ground adjustable machines!   I found it very forgiving even if not 100% balanced in..
The Vaquero is a real upgrade in performance from Silver Sabre type machines!  For those who don't like the sound of the Lobo, this is the machine for you.. Similar performance depth wise, but with the added bonus of being very light in weight & as the Cibola utilising all the Lobo/ Tejon coils.. Try it out using the awesome 10/12 open loop widescan!!!   Not just a great cold search coil, but retains excellent sensitivity to small items, with added depth in not to heavily iron infested areas.. In all Tesoro have come up with 2 new detectors which given time should become very popular taking over from the all time favourites, Sabre, B1,B3s..
These new machines are based on the high performance Tejon, but simplified controls, much like the Laser Rapier, but with a frequency shift flick switch, so you can operate next to other Cobola/ Vaquero users ie-14kHz..  Give Gary a call [not xmas day]!  Don't think his wife would be to happy?    I have found Gary very upfront & honest, as he told me not buy a Vaquero as I get on very well with my trusty Lobo & felt there would not be any major advantage apart from weight!       

                     Thanks, all the best.  Have a great Xmas,  cheers Tony..

Hi Gary , just a few words on my brief encounter with the new tesoro Cibola. First impressions were that it was going to be another silver sabre/rapier rehash with no real improvement in performance, but looks can be deceiving! Although nothing great was found on the short test I conducted, several buttons and small non ferrous oddities were found at very respectable depth with a lovely sharp response. tiny items like 22 air rifle pellets and brass spade connectors were equally forthcoming showing its excellent sensitivity .Iron rejection was very good ,with only a couple of very deep pieces being dug (one of these being an iron ring about 3 inches in diameter found at about 10 inches deep, this would easily fool most machines). To sum up I would say the Cibola offers great value for money ,its performance being comparable to the more expensive Tesoro Tejon or Xp Goldmax for a lot less money. Ash

Thanks lads for your honest opinions....Gary
Below are extracts from the Tesoro web site*note Tesoro give a limited lifetime warranty in the US.
 UK machines carry 1 year.

The new Tesoro Cibola
Garys detecting cibola pictureGarys detecting cibola side view

The Cibola (pronounced see-bow-lah)sebola,sabola,cebola,cabola combines H.O.T. circuitry with  turn-on-and-go simplicity. It is designed for the treasure hunter that does not want to bother with too many controls. The Cibola is named after one of the fabled seven cities of gold that the conquistadors were searching after and will simplify the search for any treasures to be found.

The Cibola’s main search mode is an ED 180 Silent Search discriminate. A threshold-based All Metal is accessed by the Push Button Pinpoint mode. The ease of use for the Cebola makes it the perfect detector for both the metal detecting novice as well as the treasure hunter that has been around for a while.

The new Tesoro Vaquero
Tesoro VaqueroVaquero metal detector

During the design phase of the Vaquero (pronounced va-care-oh)vaqero,vakero, we knew that it was going to be a very hard working detector. It is designed as an all-around detector, able to do just about everything that any detectorist could want to do. Vaquero is the Spanish word for cowboy. When we think of hard work and the ability to take on any kind of tough job, we think of the cowboys of the old west.
The main part of the Vaquero’s versatility is its three and three-quarters manually adjusted ground balance. This will give the detectorist the power to set up his machine to best suit the mineralization conditions that he is working in and his personal treasure hunting style. The Vaquero adds an ED180 discrimination feature to filter the trash from the treasure and a Push Button Pinpoint that makes digging up the goodies that much easier. The discriminate knob is also used to switch into a threshold-based All Metal Mode.

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