By Erik Oostra
This really has been a great week, found a gold ring on Monday and a diamond bracelet about an hour ago.. It's marked 925 silver.. Even though the Queensland borders are closed because of Covid, there are still plenty of people on the island for the school holidays.. and plenty of people means plenty of freshly dropped coins and jewellery.. I'm not usually this lucky though as the finds are seasonal when school holidays are on or depend on how much sand has moved during really high tides or storms.. Even so, it seems the Patron Saint of metal detecting (whoever that might be, I nominate Steve) is looking after me this week.. and there's still 4 more days to go before the school holidays are over..
Every morning I start at around 4:30am with my head lamp and finish when the first tourists arrive to watch to sun rise..
At the end of the summer we experienced a favorable tide/swell combination but the first 2 beaches I checked out weren't producing. However, as soon as I reached the wet sand of the 3rd beach there were shallow targets every couple of feet. By this time it was already well after 10pm but I could still see that there was a decent cut running up and down the shoreline with lots of black sand showing. There were a couple of other hunters in the area but this was one of those rare times when there were enough finds for everyone to keep digging.
It took a long time to find any jewelry but once I did it seemed that they were popping out pretty regularly and even in the artificial light of my headlamp I knew I had some small gold and silver items. As daylight approached I tried one other beach that I was curious about and didn't find nearly as much there but high on the slope I did scoop out a find that got my heart going - a large gem-studded cross and chain with some weight to it. By this time it was light enough outside where I could see that the cross and chain were not yellow gold but I held onto the hope that it could be white gold until I found a .925 stamp on the hoop. Still a nice find!
I live for hunts like this and only wish that I had the willpower to keep hunting since these conditions don't come around all that often. Of the 4 gold pieces I found, one was a gold claddagh ring, one a St. Christopher medal and another a gold crown from a cremation urn. I also found over 200 coins on the hunt and probably at least that many pieces of trash. Needless to say, my body was hurting for some time afterwards and I was thankful for the ibuprofen in our cupboard! GL&HH!
Been camping for 3 days, just extended for a fourth because camping season is winding down, and I seem to have carte blanche at this one to dig anywhere.
First day I hit 2 tot lots and the beach, unfortunately they must have removed all the old sand and refreshed it. The lots produced 30 some odd coins, some small worthless jewelry and some small brass beads. The little heart is .925, the only silver I've found so far. It's an earring.
Got some stuff at the beach anyway, the ring is cool, but stainless.
Next morning I went to another tot lot and did much better:
80+ coins and some small jewelry, again all junk. Hit another tot lot in the evening:
I was approached by a staff member who asked me to hunt for a particular piece of hardware in a gathering field where they have Cornhole tournaments. They also have bands here and used to have vendors, but replaced that part with a basketball court and a dog park. Never found the part, it was steel and probably got hit by a lawnmower this morning.
By this time I was really coin shooting, ignoring pennies for the most part. 60+ more. That funny looking wingnut at the bottom is a bass guitar tuning key.
I've pulled over 200 coins from this place in 3 days, the earliest quarter was a 1966, and the earliest penny was 1963. About $30 total. Got one more day and two more Cornhole courts to hunt. I've pretty much cleaned this place out! 😀 Next year it'll be full again.
All this dirt talk…. Thought I’d show yesterday’s finds and remind ya what this machine is also good at. One picture shows my 5 hours of trash. Left the iron and caps for someone else. In reality…. I wasn’t trying to dig much. Just getting able to get back out there …. Couple of broken toes and small crack in wrist. Pulling, twisting and standing on that scoop out deep was a challenge. Only a couple of others hunters out … but it was a great day for being in the water. Don’t know why but everything was deep…. 8” or more… couple I thought could be sunglasses. The yellow is 14k 7.1 grams with 1/2 c stones, the small white gold with chips tested 10k the others was Tung.
By Erik Oostra
I had a bit more luck than normal today, found $46.50 and a little gold ring with what looks like a diamond.. These were found at Horseshoe Bay after the Sunday markets.. On Monday mornings this beach usually yields a few dollars but today it was feeling especially generous.. It seems like they had a competition to see who could drop the most coins..
I went out tonight to a local football field with the exclusive goal of digging a gold chain. Before going out, I looked on this forum to see what numbers I should be looking for. I came across this (thanks 😊)
and used the +4-5 range as my target numbers. I know gold chains can come in other numbers, but I had about an hour to detect. While all the numbers in that range turned out to be aluminum, I ran across a solid 9 and had to dig. While it is not a chain, it's the next best thing. I scanned around the pendant, but all the +1-4 targets were foil and aluminum. I always use Park 1, but tonight for kicks, I used Park 2. Not sure it made the difference, but I have been over that area with Park 1 in the past.
Park 2, 7 recovery, 17 sensitivity, all metal, 15" coil