Friday, January 21, 2011

1/21/11 Report - Marine Salvage, Double Eagles & Cross of Mexican Mint

More Marine Salvage Shown at the Indian River Nautical Flea Market Last Weekend.

You expect to hear about ancient gold coins being dug up in England, but less to be expected were a bunch of US Double Eagles that were unearthed in a London garden.

Here is more of that story.

There are always surprises to be found.

They are going to spend a million dollars to truck sand for South Beach at Fort Pierce again.

I suspect that some of that sand will eventually find its way south to the Nieves site, hurting beach hunting there.

I believe that one reason that the beaches have been producing so few cobs the past few years is the large amount of dredged sand that has been dumped on the Treasure Coast beaches.

The Fisher Group out of Key West reports that the crew of the Dare found a gun powder flask. They are preparing to go after the ship code-named Lost Merchant.

My Jan. 13, 2011 post showed a photo of a half reale found on a 1715 Fleet beach. I didn't show the back of that cob.

Other Side of Same Half Reale Shown on 1/13/11.

Even though half reales are my personal favorite Spanish cobs, the cobs you find on the beach are often not in great condition, and it is difficult to see much of the design of the coin. You can usually identify cobs minted in Mexico because all you need to see is the style of cross, part of which is usually visible, as it is on this cob.

I got a couple of responses concerning the metal band that I showed a few days ago. I didn't think it was very old but was still curious about it.

Dave O. used to manufacture band strapping. This is what he said.

The piece was wrapped around a product and then inserted into a hand ratcheting tightener , the band's one end layed flat and the other end was
slid into a slot on a small drum (You can see how small where its curled) Then a ratcheting handle pulled the banding tight around the product curling it , Then you would place an open seal clamp on the band and then with a hand sealer (Looks like Hand pruner snips) with finger jaws crimped the seal on the band to hold it permanently .

We made a variety of widths and thicknesses also seals, corrugated nails for picture frames, silver stitch (the small metal rings around coffee cans)
You may have seen the banding around flats of wood packaged on train cars, crates etc.

Thanks for the authoritative response Dave.

I always have items that I'm curious about. Being curious about all types of junk helps me stay interested during those times when there just doesn't seem to be any flashy treasure around.

Forecast and Conditions.

Conditions are poor. Someone told me that it was getting hard to stay motivated. I'm sure that is the case for more than one person. But what if you spent years looking for the Atocha? Sometimes it's like that. Sometimes there are long dry spells. That has certainly been the case the past two years along the Treasure Coast. It just hasn't been very good for finding shipwreck treasure on the beaches very often, and when it has improved a little, it seems it only lasts a short time or the cuts are not in the best places.

The thing is, you have to be ready. The treasure chest opens when it will. You have to be in position and ready. Sometimes that means doing a little travel or doing a different kind of hunting.

When things are slow, do your research. scout around, become more familiar with the various beaches and learn to use your equipment more effectively. Improve your skills, take what the sea is giving, and learn from any clues that you find in the mean time.

The wind is from the west this morning, but the water got up on the beach pretty high at the last high tide. You might have seen the near full moon this morning.

A cold front will be coming through soon and the seas will increase to around five feet.

Today I was picking up fossils that are thousands of years old in shell piles. I didn't even turn my detector on. I was doing what I said - taking what the sea was giving - and looking for any clues to possible future developments.

Be aware. Be flexible. Go with the flow.

Happy hunting,