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  1. So, I have been MIA to detecting for the past 2 weeks, as I had my second date with Covid. 🙄 She visits me every 2 years and this time was no fun as well. 😄. A buddy of mine wanted to do an E Trac hunt, so I met him at a church built in the 1940’s but on a very old piece of land. I also brought the Equinox 800 and the GPX 5000. I started the hunt with the E Trac and a 13” Ultimate coil (that I just purchased here recently). It took me a bit to remember how to use it in this kind of EMI setting, but it worked very well finding me an 1852 Large cent at around 9”. I ran it for about 2 hours and found some memorials and a couple of wheats. I decided to switch and try the Equinox. Now the selling point of the Equinox is its multi-frequency technology, so I wasn’t interested in hunting with the 20 or 40 Khz frequencies, as I was looking for deep silver. The Equinox didn’t fare well with the EMI, so off to the car trunk it went. I then pulled out the GPX with a Detech 11” DD coil. It was noisy, but bearable as I ran it with very mild settings. The last 2 hours of the hunt were the most fun as I could almost run with the GPX and just bang out coin after coin, all around the 6” mark. This section I was doing had almost no trash or iron, just coins. There wasn’t a pull tab to be found, and besides some modern clad, every cent there was a wheat cent. So, the GPX found both silvers and a lot of wheats including a decent 1921. It was a ton of fun and I was just glad to get out and hunt after sitting home for all those days.
  2. 20 on the deep ones, 26 0n the shallow and 22 to 24 mid-range. But I went to the closet and pulled out my Mystery Master Classic. Who will reign supreme? Well, the "Iron Chef" of course. Bon apatite.
  3. It keeps raining here. Started back to work and then more rain. And snow. And rain. It let up this afternoon so I continued to dig up the yard. It's one big target. Here are a few finds from the last week. I'm digging up just about everything just to eliminate target sounds. And that's why I found the silver button. Corroded iron on the back so it was a goofy signal. I'm surprised that we haven't found any older coins. A penny from 1918 but everything else is 50's up. House was built in 29.
  4. April was a fair month for me. I was able to get access to a private boarding school which operated from 1906 until 1988 and sat on 50 acres. While it wouldn't have seen lots of commerce, and while jewelry wasn't part of the environment, I still had high hopes. I know the student body was quite small until the 20s. In the end, I managed 5 silver dimes, 4 war nickels, a buff, and 20+ wheat pennies. Also found quite a lot of clad (and very few zincolns - yeah!). Lots of keys from the old dorms. It was better than most locations I hunt, and I'm sure still has a few more out there. It became clear that when new facilities were built in the 50s and 60s, lots of dirt was moved around an much of the original turf has been buried under a foot or more of fill. You could easily tell original ground from the fill when cutting plugs. At the start of May, I spent one entire day working tot lots in schools I'd ignored since the start of the pandemic. Found several nice gold items, one of which I have hopes of returning. Also found a small mountain of bling and clad. I used a mix of my Deus with the 9" X35 coil and a derivation of the hot program, and my V3i with the 10" DD coil and my custom deep program at the old school. The class ring was found with my MX Sport and 7"DD. It was a very wet April (and now May) out West. Hoping to get some warmth soon! Zincoln
  5. When I don’t feel like driving anywhere I usually go up the hill in the woods by my house. This property is owned by the company I work for so I have free reign of it. Not too long ago I was up there and besides headstamps and bullets I found a harmonica reed. So yesterday I headed up there and found an area where I was getting a lot of iron signals. First thing I dug was an old rusty handsaw blade. Then I found what I think is an iron stirrup. Not sure if that’s what it is, but maybe someone here can give a positive ID. Then I started finding headstamps including only my second 10 gauge headstamp. As I worked my way up a small branch, I noticed a rock spring well! I was detecting as I walked towards it and got a nice sweet high tone well using sensitive FT. It rang up 91-93 and I just knew it was going to be a silver dime. I was hoping for a barber, but it was a ‘34 merc. I rescanned that hole and got a another exact same signal about a foot away and out pops a ‘24 merc! I’m so happy I found this spot because I have another place close to home to go. BTW, there’s another old spring with similar rock work that is closer to my house. I’ve pounded that one and got I think five silvers. Although the rock work is similar the one close to the house uses mortar but the one up the hill looks to be dry stacked.
  6. Ideally I would love to share all my finds. In 10 years I’ve found a lot of nice things, and even some rare and valuable things. Inevitably once I post rare and valuable historical items I come under local pressure to donate them with the argument that “history belongs to us all.” There’s a part of me that agrees with that statement. There’s another part of me that thinks history belongs to those who seek it. I put in the work to seek it out and retrieve it, and I should be able to be the one to share it until I choose to pass it on how I see fit. We share our finds in part to share history with others in our own way. We become attached to those items and proudly display them. The last thing many of us want are entities laying claim to our finds, guilt tripping us or suggesting that it now belongs to everyone, and keeping it is somehow wrong. Yet this has happened to me enough times (never here) that I feel burned for sharing anything. I just wonder if any of you have had the same experience. It’s a kind of catch 22 where both arguments have merit. Regardless, I follow the law. There’s no crime here in holding on a valuable historical find. If it answers some kind of important question or fills in an important gap, then I’d err more on the side that it belongs to everyone. Either way we should have some time to enjoy the spoils. That’s my thought for the day.
  7. I enjoyed the day detecting today. I didn't find much but it was fine with me. It was great just getting out doing something. We were in a big field behind an elementary school. It was all damp clay. My buddy thought it had city road dirt dropped on it years ago. In the past I have found some Indian Head pennies, Buffalo nickels, V nickels and few wheat pennies. Not a lot and they are spread over a large area. I started today with the Legend and got the buckle and a couple coins and switched to the Gold Kruzer w/ 5x9.5dd coil. I was enjoying the Gold Kruzer relic hunting. I got the square nail with it. The Gold Kruzer hits iron relics very well which I like. Not many detectors can do that well and not many people like there detector hitting iron relics. The Tejon w/ a concentric was also very good hitting iron relics. I thought it was just analog detectors that could hit iron relics well with nails disc'd out. But I'm wrong the Gold Kruzer hits the iron relics. I think it the large range on the Gold Kruzer. Iron disc out at 22 and foil is at 48. That is a large range. I think that's why it works so well for gold nuggets and for iron relics. I enjoy digging iron relics. I suppose it's because I live in northern Michigan and it's a tougher area to find great stuff. That's why I'm really happy with the square nail lol. I consider that a great find for me. I was happy when I dug it up lol.
  8. …over something copper? Now that Spring has arrived, the park fields I hunt are coming alive. My last few excursions, I’ve noticed that when I get a signal under a particularly luxurious weed or tuft of grass, there’s usually a penny or old clad coin tangled up in the roots. I see they sell copper fertilizers. So it makes sense. Now if there was only a weed that needed trace amounts of silver or gold to thrive, I’d be on to something!
  9. Went back to the park on the beach again. It's 2 miles from my house. Today I found a 1943 silver war nickel and a nicely mushroomed 22 lead using the Xp Orx. There is no foil and I only dug 1 pulltab on the beach. It's just a very quiet beach. In the past I have found 2 gold rings on the beach and in the water a gold chain with a gold pendant and 2 silver earrings. For an old boys camp there isn't much there. The campground there is packed all summer. Maybe with covid going down, there will be more swimmers.
  10. It should be getting obvious the GPX 6000 is a great nugget detector. I think it also has great possibilities for beach detecting for jewelry. If somebody was to ask me about relic detecting, I’d tell them the same thing I say about the GPZ 7000 - way too sensitive to tiny ferrous. There is such a thing as too sensitive, and the fact that the GPX 5000 can be set up to miss the tiniest ferrous is actually an advantage. The 6000 will bang hard on the tiniest slivers of ferrous stuff, like almost invisible bits of hair thin wire. However, it might be something those who already have the machine might want to play with, and I have already been learning a few discrimination tricks while beach detecting. Anyone familiar with the Minelab PI detectors knows you get two main tone responses, either a high tone, or a low tone. The simple way to think of what these tones mean is high tone = small or weaker / low conductive targets, and low tone = large or stronger / high conductive targets. The dividing line between the two is not fixed, but varies with the ground balance setting. This means people in lower mineral ground will not get the same results as those in high mineral ground. It’s a complex subject, one I go into great detail at here. The GPX 6000 has one bit of magic for this task. The Normal/Difficult ground setting button. It allows a change in the tone response by simply pressing a button. I do not know the details of Normal vs Difficult, but it changes the timings enough to flip the tone response on many targets. I found I could use it to get four different target classes. Hi tone normal, high tone difficult = Aluminum foil, misc aluminum, wire, most bottle caps, misc small ferrous - low VDI targets. Small gold. Hi tone normal, low tone difficult = Nickel range targets, larger aluminum. Larger gold. Low tone normal, low tone difficult = Zinc penny range targets. Even larger gold. Low tone normal, high tone difficult = Quarters, dimes, copper penny, high VDI targets, nails (larger ferrous). Silver rings. The results closely mimic my coin detecting results with other ground balancing PI detectors, but with a big difference. With all the other machines I had two classes of targets. High tone small stuff, low conductors, and low tone large stuff, high conductors. This new method delivers four target classes, potentially a big step up in discrimination capability with a PI. Ferrous can show up in any of the ranges, just depends on size and type. By digging the fourth category, it’s basically just high conductive coins, and nails. No zinc pennies or aluminum screw caps. Not good if you have lots of nails, but I will be doing this in a park soon, as many parks are not loaded with nails. Others might be, so it’s site specific. The other big caveat I already mentioned. This assumes bad ground, with a ground balance setting to match. The GPX 6000 is automatic and sets its own ground balance. You have no way to set and lock it, unlike a TDI. So I have no idea where the tone shifts will occur in other ground. The good news is that you really don’t need a PI as much in low mineral ground. This might allow people to get more depth on silver coins in really bad ground. The DD coil also skews results, depending on which mode it is in, salt or cancel. In other words folks, I’m looking for people who are willing to experiment, and document. I will be doing more of this and adding new information here as I go. Any adventurous souls, please do the same. There is a definite crude discrimination system included with the GPX 6000, by way of an easy button push. Let’s figure it out, and it may open up some new detecting possibilities. I blew it on my first go at this, as I dropped finds into different pockets of my pouch, to separate them by category for a photo, along with the trash. Then I got home and by habit just dumped it all in my sieve to sort the sand and trash out - oops. So will do better at that next time. Bottom line is I got real good at calling out the coins before digging. There are some real possibilities here for the adventurous types - PI naysayers need not apply! There are also caveats of course, see the following threads for more details. More information in related threads: Minelab GPX 6000 for Coin & Relic Hunting Relic Hunting with the Minelab GPX 6000?
  11. Got out yesterday and today, pictured are both days. Had some fun, tried to say howdy to another coin hunter, but he was having none of that. I won't be sharing my chocolate chip cookie with him I guess.
  12. So, my beach season hunting has officially started. I was going to shoot for two days hunting but a wash out on Thursday made me change some plans. I had reserved Thursday for the GPX 6000 and the 14” DD coil, but had to settle for trying the 6000, 5000 and Equinox on Friday. I changed beach locations too and ended up at the less EMI beach for the day. Started out using the GPX 5000 for clearing out some of the recently deposited junk in an area that has produced silver before. I thought the storms that ripped through the previous day would remove some sand, but it was just the opposite…. sand deposited along 3/4 of the beach (top to bottom). Also, high tide reach to the highest point of the beach, so I could only hunt where the waves did not constantly reach up top. The 5000 did well considering the beach was really sanded in and gave me my first silver of the season – a 1955 Washington quarter. The rest was clad, but for 2 copper pennies. Some junk jewelry, and maybe some iron shot or just a ball bearing, - it measured .75 caliber. The big spoon was found at 20” and I thought I was going to get a beer can or some big iron, so that was a nice surprise. Hunted with the 5000 for 6 hours and decided I cleared enough to try the 6000 in that spot. The EMI was a bit more than usual but not really bad. I’m still not sold on that 14” coil. I tried both ground settings, as well as both Salt mode and EMI mode. I tried auto, auto +, manual (full) and manual (setting 1) and some in between. I just could not get the 6000 to not false on the sand. It was partially damp, as high tide receded a while ago, but with a sensitivity of 1, I would have expected a smooth clean machine. IDK maybe the coil is not good. I did not bring the 11” mono as I really wanted to see if the salt mode would work on the 14” DD. Being a bit disappointed, and after trying all combinations of settings, I called it after around 10 minutes. So, the tide was getting as low as it was going to be, so I hunted for 3 hours with the Equinox and traded my spade for my scoop. I didn’t use the Nox much last season as the 5000 was killing the silver, so the Nox sat idle. But I wanted to see if the heavy waves dropped anything on the beach along with all that sand. There weren’t many targets, so I dug everything to get a feel for all the numbers. The hairpins and tiny wire all read a steady -2, -3. The Nox did well for the short time I used it and if I wasn’t beat from the hunt, I would have stayed in the area that was producing some coins. It was the best machine for the day to give me a chance at some gold. It felt really, really good to get out and just walk the beach. Next week all 3 machines will be at the crazy EMI beach. I will have the mono coin and the DD to see if this beach (dry sand) will be ok for the 14” coil. Can’t wait!!!
  13. Snow mostly melted now, so I took the Whites M6 out to a park field that has been detected a lot. No silver, but these coins have been in the ground for some time. Dimes and copper cents mostly did not favor me today 😞
  14. I was invited to visit a friend out of town and detect on his permission a couple of days ago. This place was a 100 year old boys school which is now privately owned. Since I recently got the Deus II and have only had it out once, I thought this would be a great place to try to learn the language of this machine. Up until now I have only used American and Australian detectors, so this new French one was Greek to me. I loaded up the D2 and took the Equinox as a backup if things went south. The plan was to see how deep the D2 could get in the heavily iron mineralized soil of the sports field that we have pounded for two years. I figured we had cleaned out enough of the shallow coins and trash to possibly hit the silver layer if there is one. I started out in the P1-General program, but quickly swithed over to a modified Park program with 5 Tones and that's when the coins started popping out. I also used the XY screen which I really like as it helped to identify many of the trash targets. Where has this thing been all my detecting life? After a few hours, I was starting to recognize the sounds of quarters, dimes, copper pennies and zinc pennies, most of which were coming from 4-6 inches down and sounding really clear. A few that were in the 7-8 inch range still sounded good, but had more of and iron tone mixed in. I did hear some faint tones deeper down that had 00 TID, but none had any silver tone to them and I passed on those for the time being. The one banging silver tone I did get came from about 7 inches down and turned out to be a belt buckle. Another one I thought was a silver dime for sure at about 4 inches was a 1980 British New Penny. By the end of the day, I was also able to recognize many square tabs, most bottle caps, and many nails with some level of confidence. This is a very trashy field but I was able to skip much of it this time and felt like I wasn't missing something good. So I ended up with a bunch of clad coins (and a 1965 dime... so close!), 19 copper pennies, only one wheatie (1944-S), 17 zincolns, a couple of small buttons of some kind, and a Disney Frozen pendant. And while I didn't reach silver this time out, I feel much more comfortable with the Deus II and I'm starting to learn more of what it is telling me. Here is what I pulled, minus the surface trash.
  15. It's been a slow year, partly due to the weather, partly due to checking out detector+coil combos in trashy (multiply hunted) test sites, and partly due to lack of available promising old sites. So far in 2022 I've researched three possible new sites. From the first of these I've shown some results (silver Roosie dime, Buffalo nickel, Wartime nickel) but it's getting tougher there. That muni park site suffers from my most annoying nemesis -- reworking/backfilling 'improvements' which bury most of the goodies previous detectorists failed to get. I'm sure there are a few Wheaties and other coins from the first 65 years of the 20th Century (e.g. silver) but with good weather here I expect it to get a lot more visitors, particularly around the sports fields which are most of my remaining, promising ground. Last weekend I discovered what looked to be a very good and possibly unsearched homestead (now public property) for which early 20th Century USGS topos showed a couple buildings that disappeared in the 1950's. I headed out there Tuesday, grabbed my detecting gear, and on the (walking) way noticed a sign at the pedestrian entrance so checked it out. There in plain letters were the dreaded "no metal detectors." In their defense the site is exclusively wooded trails with one meadow so I understand they don't want digging to disturb the flora. I was close to another site I've hunted quite a bit (with only moderate results, mostly Wheaties and one silver Warnick) so off I go. In 3 hours of detecting, not surprisingly I found no old coins but instead about a dozen copper strips (sounding good in the quarter - half dollar VDI region) that had been used as flashing from a slate roof of a large residential building torn down in the mid-60's. A few modern coin crumbs but no oldies. Wednesday I had a two part plan -- go to my 2021 best site (what I called the "Wheatfield" due to the number of Wheat cents I've found there), figuring if the grass had been mown I could mop up on one rather lightly frequented (nowadays), quite shaded, sloped area that previous partial coverage had produced a couple Wheaties. If unmown I had another park (plan 2) not terribly far away I wanted to re-search with a small coil to get between the pulltabs around picnic tables. Interestingly the plan 1 section A was the only part of this plan 1 park which hadn't been mowed. Hmmm. I've seen this before -- areas that are lightly used are returned "to nature" never to be mowed again. I figured this might be my last chance so even with some scattered thick grass I went to work. Right off the bat the EMI was bad and after fiddling with different multifrequency modes and settings I settled into (ML Equinox 800 settings of) recovery speed = 4, 10 kHz in Park 2, which was the quietest I could find, allowing me to run gain in the 20-22 range. I had 3 hours to hunt and spent the first 1:45 here, with a couple small successes -- 1944 Wheat cent plus a thin brass trade token that had a large '1 centsign' in the middle and a merchant's name around the rim. (Below I post photos of these and other relevent finds.) The token hit in the aluminum screwcap zone (21-23 on the Equinox). Both of these finds were in the 5" depth range and less than 2 meters (6 1/2 feet) apart. I eventually moved on to section B which was an open, flatter area but also unmown. EMI was quiet now so back to my standard park 1, MultiFrequency, gain = 22-23, Iron Bias F2 = 0, keeping recovery speed at 4. In the first 10 minutes in the 4"-5" depth range I found two fired lead bullets, both white (oxidation with age?) and both measuring 0.30-0.31 inch diameter (caliber), only about a meter apart. My typical assumption when I find bullets and/or casings in parks is that these were dropped or fired by hunters prior to the land becoming a park. I think that is likely here - so first half of 20th Century or earlier. After 45 minutes I wasn't finding any more goodies so with 30 minutes remaining I headed towards section C which was on my way back to the vehicle. This section fortunately was mown but unfortunately it's close to a picnic shelter meaning I had to get ready for trash, especially pulltabs which can masquerade as USA 5 cent 'nickels'. I have developed a standard technique when hunting parks and schools in my area. If the Equinox's signal strength meter (misnamed 'depth meter') shows 4 or more bars (more bars is deeper) and the VDI is anywhere close to a nickel (12-13 being the sweetspot) then I'm digging it. If signal strength is less than 3 bars I have an investigation method using Field 2, recovery speed = 6 that identifies most beavertail only (ring missing) pulltabs. The modern racetrack tabs, when shallow, typically flash some 14 in Park 1. However, 4 bar or weaker signal strength nickels will flash some 11 and 14 in Park 1, and my investigation method using Field 2 fails with deeper targets. (BTW, if 3 bar signal strength I use my judgement on the dig/ no dig decision, deepending upon what's been showing up and/or how fatigued I am.) Approximately 15 minutes into my last 30 minutes I get a mostly 12-13 signal with some 11 and 14 thrown in, and it's varying between 3 and 4 bars. Diggable. At about 5 inches out comes a Jeffie (won't read the date until I get home), which is promising. Finally, with 5 minutes before I turn into a pumpkin I get what appears to be a deep Zincoln: 19, 20, 21 VDI but a 4 bar signal strength. Maybe it's a deep Zincoln -- those do occur especially if the ground has been reworked, but since these annoying junk coins have been around for 40 years now, if they haven't self-destructed from galvanic action they can be naturally deep. I figured about 80% I had a Zincoln and 2% an Indian Head (I had found one last year about 20 meters away) with the remaining 18% 'other' and likely trash. After digging a ~6" diameter plug I got a Garrett Carrot signal in the hole sidewall and at about 4-5 inch depth out came a plug of dirt with a silver ring apparent. Based on the VDI I hoped for a delicate sterling ring -- it was about the size of a woman's pinkie. When I tried to push the dirt out of the ring's center it didn't give but rather showed the reverse side pole of Mercury dime! WTF? (I guess this fits the 18% 'other'. ) The VDI should have read 26-27. Putting the handheld back in the hole, very close to where I had just pulled the dime I got another strong signal and recovered a very rustly 16d nail. I estimate the tip of the nail was 1 to 1.5 inches away from the dime when undisturbed. Apparently being that close pulled the dime's VDI down to the Zincoln range, and fortunately not lower or I wouldn't have dug it. OK, here's what you've been waiting for, the finds described above (copper items now with a coating of olive oil) along with the Merc's next door neighbor rusted nail. Merc is a 1941 plain; Wheatie is 1944 plain; nickel is 1954-D -- all three quite common date+mm. Although the edge of the token is partly missing I don't think that happened while in the ground since most of the remainder of the rim shows no sign of similar deterioration, but that's just my speculation. The nickel doesn't look like it's spent a lot of its lifetime in circulation but that doesn't necessarily tell when it was dropped since it could have just as easily sat in a drawer for 2 or 3 decades before being lost. Oh, Thursday was rainy so I did some more research and found an accessible (and not too distant) public site that dates back to 1915! That site is the search plan for early next week. 🤞
  16. I got out this morning hoping to add to yesterday’s two mercs. Today I went to a spot in town where there’s a gravel parking lot. There used to be two houses where the gravel area is but the front yards are still there and still in grass. I hunted there two weeks ago and got 10 wheats so I figured there had to be a silver lurking there somewhere. I got four wheats and a few copper memorials and clad dimes. But I also got a nice deep high tone. (This time I was using a full tones version of park and a full tones version of deep HC.) When I stuck my shovel in the ground I realized it was in a plug I had dug out two weeks ago! I just had to dig deeper. Lol. Out came my first silver spoon. This one’s not plated, it’s the real deal, even though there’s no markings on the part I found. 34 grams of silver! Not long after that closer to the gravel area I got a 96-97 with some iron tones coming through. When I flipped the plug over a large silver disc fell out of it. A 1943 walker! That made my day! Oh, check out the stack of coin pack condoms! Lol!
  17. Went to a little spot in some town open space that I thought might be promising. I wasn't hoping for anything and after an hour or so I was ready to bag it. Then I get a tone!! And pull out this bad boy! Imperial Frontier 4714 Lockback Pocket Knife Looks like a 70's maybe late 60s knife and it is in decent shape! I haven't cleaned it yet.
  18. A few weeks ago on my way to the dump I noticed a large gathering of people and a soccer game going on at a local park....next morning I was there with detector in hand early in the morning only to find this... Unfortunately this is becoming common place in the area where I live. The last picture is one I took up in the foot hills..wish I had a video of it... I heard the chopper coming while I was taking a break at my truck.... it was making a Bee line right at me... as it got closer it started to rise up and I could see it had a cable underneath and I assumed it was a fire bucket but then I could see other cables and all of the sudden it came over the rise with a big giant Metal detector! It flew 50 feet right over me.... I had me deus 2 ear phones on and big scrambling noise happened lol...I really wish I had my phone on me because it was a sight to see...I looked it up and it appears they are mapping for water? By the time I got my phone and took the picture it was a couple miles away. strick
  19. So, this is my final pond hunt before they refill the huge pond. It’s just too soggy to continue hunting, plus the bad targets far outweigh the good targets. The reeds and other bushy brush have completely taken over with just some sporadic areas left available to hunt. I did a 9-hour hunt and the GPX battery died on me. I don’t blame it. 😄 No gold this time, but a silver Washington quarter and 2 other possible silver items – a small ring and an ID bracelet. Lots of fishing and hunting finds as usual, plus the normal trash. This time around I had to leave a bunch of targets as my pouches were full, with no more room for anything else. It was fun while it lasted and certainly a missed opportunity, as the first ones out there would have been easily able to use discrimination to focus on coins, and gold if you don’t mind digging. Next week it’s off to some beach to get back to the sights and sounds of the beach. I did have one nice moment yesterday, when I looked up and saw an American Bald Eagle cruising around. He even made a final pass right over me. What a beautiful bird. 🦅 That made the hunt right there!
  20. Only got out for about 1 hour today at old school. Out in the field there used be some kind of building or house. A lot of iron and got a few IH's and other coins in the past. I've hunted for a few years there and don't get anything there anymore. I took the Gold Kruzer over there today. I used Deep mode with 5x9.5 dd coil. I dug a couple bullets and lead. A piece of iron and little pieces of canning lids that are shredded all over the place there. Hardly worth posting but I did anyway. Sorry about that.
  21. I switched things up this week and decided to hit that drained pond again. Actually, I really did not feel like driving to the beach when the pond is 15 minutes away. The tradeoff is that there are way more signals there than at the beach. But I’m not as muddy when I do a beach hunt. The pond makes quite a mess and definitely tests the old knees. I have a place I can park at a friend’s house and walk down a steep hill onto the pond. I was a bit worried I may get kicked out as the city workers were redoing a culvert right where I was heading down the hill. It’s kind of hard to be stealthy with a battery on your back and a big wire going to a long box. 😄 But they ignored me, so I went the other way. This time was no different than last time, with a lot of fishing and hunting related items. My first nice surprise of the day was a complete and functioning colonial shoe buckle. I’m thinking around the 1770’s as a guess. I spotted a couple marbles, so I grabbed them too. Lots and lots of junk, but as I entered a section that was littered with shell casings, this gold ring appeared. Apparently, I get one gold ring per visit. I can’t complain since I am limited to the seldom used section of the pond. Most finds from others were found nearer the population center of the pond. This ring is old and comes with what we think is a very sad story. It’s a women’s wedding band, very tiny in size and has some somber engravings. 3 Initials in old English script writing on the outside with apparently a birth and death engraving on the inside. 1877-1915. That would make the person 38 years old and probably her husband. It is possibly not from the US originally, as we seldom engrave on the outside of the ring (I think). We even wondered if he died in WW1 and then she moved to the US. WW1 started in 1914, so it’s possible. I’m happy it found me, and I have only good feelings from it, so it will go into my collection, along with some special feelings left on that one. I’m not sure if I’ll get back there anytime soon, so it may be my last hunt at the pond. They are pushing hard to finish the project (now going on 2 years), and they should be out of there soon. Great to get out, really nice that the rain held off, and I didn’t get kicked out…..what more could you ask for?😊
  22. I sorta gave up on this park couple years ago. It used to be a Clad Basket, than really started to go down hill. Finished up a site early today and had some time left so slipped in to see what's up. Started at the outdoor basketball court and never left. Coin after coin, so many started Cherry picking. I had the Pro fitted with the 8x5 and it really picked threw the trash. Was hoping for maybe a ring in there but not today. For the day $11.15 for 93 coins. That ole machine should have been smoking. As for me, wife had a dandy meal made, couple of pain pills, and 2 fingers of Rum. I'm out of here.
  23. I've been lucky the past couple years with January and February weather nice enough to detect. Not this year, though. We didn't have much snow those months, but as soon as the rain stopped the ground refroze. March has been much nicer and I've gotten out half a dozen times. The first several hunts were either for trying different detectors or just cleaning up my "Wheatfield" site (muni park) that produced well last year. My standard New Year's resolution is to find new potentially producing sites so finally this week I got to one of those. It didn't disappoint. This is another public park and (as always) I assumed it had been hit hard, like most of the other parks I've detected. First thing out of the box I noticed that I was picking up ground noise. Typically around here I ground balance the ML Equinox (11" coil, Park 1) around 30 plus or minus 5. After hearing the ground noise I ran an auto GB sequence and it settled at ~7! No problem, though, nice and quiet. I settled in on a gain of 23 and left my other favorite settings (5 custom tones, Recovery Speed = 4, Iron Bias F2 = 0) alone. I had viewed HistoricAerials' photos and had a decent idea of what the park looked like back in the 50's and 60's (oldest photo there was from 1955). That helped me decide what ground may have been minimally reworked since those last days of dropping silver coins. I did my usual first hunt surveying -- not trying to mow every inch but wandering around looking for sweetspots. After a few modern coins, about 30 minutes in I got my first oldie -- a Wheat cent. Already I knew I'd found a good detecting site. Within another 30 minutes I get Wheatie #2, and within the next hour a Buffalo nickel. These early finds were in an area about 10 m by 40 m. I recalled from the aerial photos that a current sports field was present at least back to 1962 and by comparing the old photos to newer ones it appeared things hadn't changed much in that part of the park so I wandered over there. Bonus: one building obviously had a concession stand. The ground around it had been covered with crushed stone so people wouldn't be walking in mud after rains. I immediately got a copper Memorial cent about 2 inches deep. Again surveying, maybe 10 meters away I received a good but strong (i.e. likely shallow) 5 cent dTID of 12-13 and an inch or so down, out popped a silver Warnick! Here's a photo of the loot: I'll explain the bottom row in a bit (only the central Buffie was found in this hunt). The two Wheaties were dated 1941 and 1937 (no mintmarks). The Warnick is the most common date+mm -- 1943-P. What surprised me about it, besides how shallow it was, is that its color is consistent with circulated (but never spending time in the ground) examples of which I have at least 150 in my collection. It has a not particularly attractive gray cast which made them easier to spot and remove from circulation back in the late 60's and early 70's when silver started going up in value. All others I've pulled from the ground have been 'cleaned' by some ground chemical (acid, possibly) and look much whiter, similar in color to 90% silver coins. Its depth is reflective of the material of the ground -- crushed stone. In my area most overburden is from decayed vegetation (especially grass clippings). As long as they don't put down thick layers of fresh stone the targets aren't going to be very deep in that area around the sports fields. Finally, the last row. The central coin (view enhanced by coating with olive oil) is the dateless one I found in this hunt. On the left is a 1916-D I found late last year, also with an olive oil coating that is now evaporated somewhat. The coin on the right is dateless and not from the ground. Note the relative wear to the buffalo's back and head as well as the wear to the 'United States of America' across the top and 'E PLURIBUS UNUM'. The two on the left show similar wear, and in some ways (but not all), more wear than the undug example. But here's the big difference. Look at the lower slice, below the buffalo's hooves. The two outside coins have a recessed 'field' where the words 'FIVE CENTS' as well as the mintmark ('D' for Denver in both cases -- difficult to see in this photo) are protected from excessive wear. The first coins minted in 1913 didn't have that recessed area but rather the 'FIVE CENTS' and mintmarks stood out, away from much of the coin's detail. It was quickly realized that typical wear from circulation would obliterate these letters so the design was changed and the second type (exhitibed by the two outside coins here) was introduced late April 1913 and continued through the entire series, ending in 1938. Thus even though the nickel I found in this hunt no longer has a date, I know it's an early 1913. (I don't know which mint, though.) About 30 million of each type were minted in Philadelphia that year making that version very common. Both Denver mint (5.3 million with 'raised ground' & 4.2 million without) and San Francisco mint (2.1 million and 1.2 million respectively) are scarce and carry a premium value in decent condition (definitely not like mine!) with both type 2 issues from these branch mints carrying considerable numismatic value, especially the 'S' mintmarked Type 2. Even if I knew the mintmark on mine were an 'S', it would be worthless in this terrible condition. But it's fun to dream. 😁 I also found $3.90 face value of modern coins in this 3.5 hour hunt. Bottom line is that this park hasn't been hit that hard by detectors and there are more goodies awaiting!
  24. Tuesday evening I took the deus out to practice in the yard and hit some fringe areas. I had probably had my nox in these areas but only maybe once or twice. The first two good finds were copper memorials in different spots. There’s a power pole in the yard and a while back I hit a wheatie maybe ten feet from the pole with the deus. So after hitting those two memorials I headed over near the pole to see if I might find another wheatie. This time I went on the opposite side of the pole from where I had found that wheatie. I got a strong 88 tid and thought that maybe it was a deep smashed beer can because I had dug a few of those not too far away with the nox a good while back. I dug about five inches down and see a small spill of a few pennies. I get those out and stick my pinpointer back in there and it goes off again. To make a long story short, I kept doong this over and over with the pinpointer and then the deus until I had 61 memorials! It probably took me a good 45 minutes. I checked the date on a few of them as they came out of the hole and they were 60s and early 70s. So in all I got 63 memorials ranging from 1959 to 1975. Wednesday night it rained but this evening it was nice and sunny. So I decided to hit an area over by my shed. In the pic it’s on the opposite side of the shed. I dug a couple of junk targets and then I got a nice 91-93. From about six inches down out comes a 1947 rosie! I have searched and searched for silver in my yard. The only silvers anywhere close by have come from an old spring which is about 120 yards away. This rosie puts me at 14 for the year.
  25. Has anyone ever seen a 1909 S VDB Lincoln Head Cent? Held one in your hand? Found one in your pocket change? Finding one like that used to be on my bucket list (in the 6th grade) One day it actually happened! Walking home from school with two of my numismatists friends, I casually reached into my pants pocket to check my small accumulation of change for the day, to see if I had acquired any collectible coins. In those days, it was still possible to find an occasional valuable penny or two in circulation. Lo and behold, there it was! A 1909 "S" Victor D. Brenner Lincoln Head Penny! I was shocked and elated, and showed it to my friends who were suitably impressed and envious (for about half a second), until reality set in with the realization of one minor detail. We all knew where it came from and we knew it wasn't mine! I took another step, then turned around and started walking back to the candy store we had just left, to return the coin to kindly Mr. Jameson who had mistakenly given it to me in change. We knew he would be heart broken for the loss of his most valuable coin and we felt at least partially to blame for the costly mistake he had made. After all, Mr. Jameson was the only person in our small town who owned a metal detector and we pestered him almost daily to see, not only this special coin, but any other coins that he had found while detecting or had received in change at the store. Because of our persistent nagging, he had placed the 1909 penny where he could easily reach it in his coin tray and show it to us. But it just so happened that he had placed it along with some other collectible Lincoln pennies in the tray adjacent to the regular pennies he routinely gave back in change. When we arrived back at the store, several students were standing around whispering to each other. Someone said, "You won't believe what happened. Mr. Jameson lost his 1909 penny!" I went up to the counter and stood silently in front of the tearful Mr. Jameson waiting for him to notice me. He continued to frantically sift through the pennies in the cash register drawer searching for his prized possession. To get his attention, I noisily lifted the lid on a candy jar sitting on the counter and took out a single piece of candy. I held the candy in my hand and laid the missing penny on the counter. Finally, Mr. Jameson paused and looked down at me standing there; looked at the candy, then picked up the penny. The surprised look on his face and the gratitude in his eyes was easily worth as much to me as the penny was to him. He rewarded me with free candy the rest of the school year, which I shared with my friends. Mr. Jameson continued to generously share his passion for detecting and coin collecting with us by letting us see and handle all of his rare pennies which included a 1914 D Lincoln cent and several others. However, he did wisely remove them far away from the other pennies in his change drawer and he never lost another coin as far as I know. I have occasionally thought about the incident over the years and the irony of once having bought a 1 cent piece of candy with a 1 cent piece that would now be worth a few hundred dollars, still makes me smile whenever I think about it.
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