Thursday, September 27, 2012

9/27/12 Report - Slaying the Junk Dragon

Written by the treasureguide for the exclusive use of

As I mentioned yesterday, I recently did some mainland hunting. It was in a super junky area.

Here is a Liberty Nickel that was found.

My magnet on a pole came in real handy at this site. It saved a lot of time and digging.

You can see a quick demonstration of how the magnet is used on YouTube or by going to a previous post.

The 1902 Liberty nickel shown above was found at the site. Values range from $2.50 in poor condition to around $135 in perfect condition. This one is banged up.

Here is the link to the magnet video.

This was one of the very few times that I actually used some discrimination. I didn’t know how much time I would have and wanted to get the easy targets out quickly. If I have enough time at this site, I’ll eventually remove all the junk.

At first I was getting a lot of junk and modern coins, including a lot of memorial pennies. Things often cluster, and it is not just at the beach. There were areas with many nails, areas where more coins were found, etc. etc.

In very junky areas it seems you have to remove a lot of the junk before you start getting at the better finds. The junk masks other objects, and much junk tends to be light and close to the surface or large and gives loud signals.

When there is a lot of junk, just accept that fact, and go out with the intent of picking up some junk. Don’t get discouraged by the amount of junk. Just pick it up for a while. You will occasionally pick up something nicer, but if you start with the understanding that you will be picking up a lot of junk, you won’t give up too quickly.

Think of it this way - the junk is actually protecting the treasure. Many detectorists will not bother with very junky areas. The result is that the treasure will hide under the junk waiting for you to come and get it.

Most of the best detecting, beach or otherwise,  is protected by some type of obstacle or deterrent. Sometimes it is rocks, weeds, bad weather, long walking distance, junk or whatever, but there is usually something to make it difficult when there is an unusually good spot.

It is like in the movies. There are always traps or dragons or something. It is a little like that in real life although the obstacles aren’t quite as dramatic.

A lot of the time, the big obstacle is junk, and if you have enough patience, you can overcome that.

There are very junky beaches where treasures are protected. Down at Fort Lauderdale, archaeologists discovered the old fort right by a busy picnic area where there were tons of pull tabs. Many detectorists were deterred by the number of pull tabs while a few others picked through the junk and picked up modern jewelry and occasionally discovered a musket ball or some other artifact. That was before the archaeologists discovered the site of the fort.

If you have enough patience, junk can become your friend. Go out to clean up the junk, and eventually you’ll find some interesting things. It is something like unwrapping a present. You might have to remove a healthy layer of junk before you get to the older and better stuff.

Most old sites have been used for years.    You'll likely find the more recent stuff before you get down to the older stuff.

One thing you might consider if you are willing to work very junky areas is a lawn rake or one of those magnetic rakes that roofers use to remove the old roofing nails and things after they finish a job.

Always properly dispense of the junk you pick up.

On eBay there is a Star of Lima cob listed for sale. The listing said it is being sold for the charitable purposes and will be used for medical treatment. Not much time left.

Here is the link.

2 - 4 foot seas along the Treasure Coast today.  Some northeast winds, but not much.  Low tide is around 1PM today.

Still some miscellaneous finds out there, but very hard to find any shipwreck treasure on the beach now.

If you want to find treasure, you'll have to overcome your dragon.

Happy hunting,