Got out to my (lately) best producing site for 2 1/2 hours last week -- a permission which I still have only covered less than half the area. I thought I had hit the garden spots initially but that has turned out not to be the case. One of the reasons I wasn't high on my current spot is that it had been backfilled with gravel. When? I don't know but based upon aerial photos I was thinking in the 1960's. I've been pulling up keepers the last half dozen times and in that time I've only covered an area about four swings wide by 30 m long. "Low and slow" is paying off. The area is moderatly trashy with both iron (mostly nails and screws) and aluminum (all kinds, especially foil but some square tabs and the always present can slaw).
I was running the Eqx 800 in Park 1, ground balanced, custom 5 tones, gain of 22 (high for me since I usually suffer from EMI in my town), recovery = 4, and iron bias = 0. For iffy targets I had programmed the profile channel with Park 2, 50 tones, recovery speed = 6, iron bias = 0. I can't seem to get my brain to hunt in 50 tones, but using that to verify good/bad targets works pretty well. If I get repeatable tones and TID's which match the 5-tone signals then I dig. Sometimes I get completely different TID's in 50 tones, other times I can't lock on a tight tone range from any direction. When I've dug those they are some kind of iron.
Ok, back to the hunt. I mentioned above the gravel backfill, which is in the neighborhood of 2-3 inches in thickness. There is a soil (sod) layer above that which varies in depth from about 2 to 5 inches. When I get down to gravel and haven't recovered I start to feel more positive. Most of my good finds in this area have either been at the top of the gravel layer, in the gravel layer, or below it. Recovery is a bit tricky since it's not so easy to dig in gravel. (BTW, this is true rounded river gravel, not sharp limestone chunks which some people call 'gravel' and which is even more difficult to dig in.) I was using the standard Lesche hand tool (well, my toothless modded one) which does pretty well in gravel and stone. The key is to hand pinpoint (TRX great for that), keep the blade away from the find and try to leverage it out with soil/gravel as an insulating buffer. I do this when in regular soft ground as well but it's even more critical in gravel or stone. I always have a plastic scoop to remove the loose ground (hopefully also containing the target).
The dime hit in the penny/dime zone. I'm not one of those detectorists who can tell the difference betweeen copper penny, clad dime, and silver dime. All, under the right conditions, will ring up anywere in the 24-29 TID range for me, and I've even seen pennies hit 30 (but not staying there). Interestingly I didn't find a single Wheat penny on this hunt, but I've found quite a few in this area. Both nickels rang up where nickels typically do -- 12-13 with possible slides to 11 and/or 14. The Buffie in particular was not a clean 12-13 but good enough! The deeper the coin, the more likely it will be bothered by nearby iron. And, no, I still haven't found a Warnick with a high TID. So far I can't tell them from regular nickels (nor some evil size&shape aluminum). This one is in the best condition of any Warnick I've found. Unfortunately it's overexposed in the picture. 1942-P. The Merc is a 1937 plain. The Buffie is 1936-D. None of these is scarce but I'm always glad to get silver and Buffies with dates.
I just returned from a short vacation back home in western PA, and squeezed in a couple of hunts at a few old sites -- an 1872 farmhouse, an 1885 house, an early to mid 1800s foundation, and a 19th century cellar hole...plus a short time at an old church or school house estimated to be late 1800s. I managed a nice variety of finds; here are some of the better ones. The large cent is 1818, the pinkish-looking Indian is an 1863 fattie.
There is writing on most of the flat buttons, but the only ones I can make out are the gold-gilded one that says "TREBLE GILT STANDARD COLOR," and one other that says "SUPERFINE STRONG LONDON." Does anyone know any ages on those?
The round crotal bell says "OCT 24 76 & MAY 14 78" -- and has a maker's mark that has a small circle, then a diamond with a plus inside, and then another small circle. The other, acorn-shaped bell has no markings...
Well......what a day, I started off this morning at 5 am to head off to a Civil war site. I found the usual relics, lead, percussion caps, but, got tired of not digging and high conductive targets. The first picture is from the Civil war site. I decided to call it a day around noon and headed home to get some things done around the house. As I drove thru town I saw a front end loader and a pile of asphalt at the old zoo. I quickly did a u-turn and drove back to see what was happening, what a beautiful site, 75% of the parking lot had been striped of the asphalt. I was informed that the parking lot was paved back in 1984 and had been a dirt parking lot going back to when the guy was a kid and he assumed before that. The timing was perfect, just as I was ready to begin hunting the guys called it a day, gotta love city workers I started my hunt around 2:00 and hunted until 8:00 pm.
I began finding coins within seconds of turning my machine on and hunted until I ran out of light and gas. They didn't cut all the asphalt out completely, so, I had to use my prospectors pick to chisel thru a layer of asphalt and gravel. And of course halfway thru the hunt, my pick decided to crap out on me, so I had to skip all but solid hits until I could get my pick repaired. I'll go back tomorrow after work and chase all the stuff I left behind today and there was a bunch of it 🙂
I'm a firm believer in the depth ability of Nox after today, I have never dug great sounding targets at theses depths until today. I was getting CTX like depths with positive ID's and strong repeatable tones and only running sensitivity at 18. Most of the silver and copper was 6-10" deep and I had no doubt I was digging either copper or silver coins. The 2 nickles hit at 25-27 VDI , which was a good thing, otherwise I wouldn't have gone after them. The only thing I can attribute the depth to today was the fact I was running my recovery speed at 4 instead of 6 like I normally do. My settings were as follows:
Ground balance 0
Iron bias 0
Recovery speed 4
Tone break -9 to +16, just because of the urgency of the hunt and the digging conditions, I'll drop it down to -9 to + 10 tomorrow
I found a nice variety of coins and some I have not identified yet due to the crust on most of them. I ended up with:
2-Silver war nickles
1-WW2 Eagle coat button
I'm not sure how many Wheats, or what all was dug yet, cleaning in process. I'll post a pic after I get everything as clean as possible. It was by far my best silver day so far, I'm sure there is as many left as I took out still waiting to be rescued! Thanks for looking.
This year is starting off pretty good for me. Nine v- nickels, only one buffalo. 25 Indians, one 1866 2 cent piece. That war nickel is the high number one(I'm proud of it.. lol) I'm feeling pretty good about the silver. Three rings and quite a few coins. Still hunting pk1 iron bias 3 recovery 7 and 5 tones. My user profile is set up for trashy areas the same way in pk1 but it's got stuff notched out and depending on the location it may get tweaked (more notched out) lol.