Tuesday, August 27, 2013

8/27/13 Report - More On Secondary Detecting Sites and Their Surprises & Experimenting to Learn More About Your Detector

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of treasurebeachesreport.blogspot.com.

Here are three beach dug 14K rings of different sizes.  There is quite a bit of difference in the surface area and amount of gold in each of these.

I recommend taking rings of different sizes, putting them on the ground and scanning them with your detector.  Listen to how much different the signal is for each ring.  I highly recommend practicing with your detector like that.  Move your coil different distances above each ring.  Notice at what depth each drops out.

Then vary the settings on your detector and observe the results.  Increase and decrease sensitivity and notice where each drops out.  Increase and decrease discrimination and see how that affects the signal at different distances.

I think people do not do enough of this kind of thing.  It is a good way to learn how different detector settings affect the results, it is a very good way to learn what your detector is trying to tell you.  Of course the results will not be exactly the same under different situations in the field, but you will still learn a lot about how to use your detector.  I'll bet a lot of you find out that you might have been missing items like the very thin ring because of the settings you use.

This experimental method is much better than simply using the factory settings or doing what someone else says.

Now I want to recap some of the main points that I discussed concerning the four old coin spots that I talked about two days ago.  Those old coin spots are very much like the shipwreck coin sites of the Treasure Coast.  They appear when conditions are good and disappear when beach conditions are not good.  They primarily produce a particular type of target that comes from an older source even though targets from other sources as well as more recent losses can sometimes be mixed in.

Deciding if you want to spend time on spots like these old coin spots ,might include several factors such as the expected quality or value of finds, the expected frequency of finds, and other possible risks or costs such as the time risk of missing out on other promising sites, but with this type of site the most important factor is the beach conditions, which can cause the probability of finds to vary from near zero to very high.

Another important characteristic of those four coin spots is how quick and easy it is to check those sites.  You could quickly take a look to see if they might be producing or not, and it would be quick and easy to check out the well defined area with a detector, and if producing, do a good job of cleaning out most targets before moving on.

As a result, sites like this are good supplementary detecting sites, or when higher quality sites are not producing for one reason or another, they can become your first choice.  When better sites are producing these secondary sites can wait.  There is little chance that anyone else will clean them out, although there is the danger that conditions might deteriorate.

You can see that the decision making process to maximize the value of finds can be more complex and precise than simply always checking out your same old favorite spots or some simple-minded site rotation strategy.

The primary value of these old coin sites is that they can supplement other hunting when you are in the area or passing by or when you are waiting for a tide change or something before hitting higher quality sites.

Much of the above discussion assumes a goal of maximizing the monetary value of finds.  That might not be your only goal.  Some people simply like old coins or some other type of target and like to find those types of targets even if they are not the most valuable.  Some people also just like to explore.

One thing to remember about these old coin holes is that they also occasionally produce surprises.  And some of them are associated with other locations that produce other types of targets.

For example, near spot 2 there was and still is a series of groins in the water opposite the dunes.  The shallow water seldom produced jewelry of the age of the coins.  I believe that any older jewelry, if there was much to start with, which would probably not have been expensive anyhow, was probably pulled into the deeper water that rushed through the cut just off the beach.  There was however an occasional more modern gold item that was found in the shallow water there even though very few people visited that area during the period that I was detecting the area.  Nobody that I ever saw detected that area and so if something was lost there it stayed there until a storm came along to pull it down into the deep water.  One of the good things about areas like this is that they don't get cleaned out on a regular basis.

Spot 1, the modern jewelry hole that I talked about the other day, was like that too.  In my estimation, there wasn't a great deal of jewelry lost there, but it would accumulate for a while without being cleaned out.  Again, that is the good thing about finding your own little spots, as hard as that might seem.  You can let them accumulate and clean them out pretty much on your own schedule.  I know that is difficult today, but it can still be done.  There are good stretches that almost nobody detects.  You do have to do what I've been talking about - not following everyone else but taking time to explore and find those areas that aren't heavily hunted that do produce under certain circumstances.

I mentioned the other day that genuine treasure chests have been discovered not far from these locations.  Other old artifacts have also been discovered in the past down around there.  When you are out in an area with a long history, you never know what might pop up.  That is another reason to go out and explore a little.  Sometimes these types of coin spots are simply a part of the mix that keep it interesting while you are looking for other things.

I should remind you that some of these sites have changed in more recent years.  A lot of construction was done on Virginia Key.  The white sand dunes were flattened and removed, as one example.   That does not change the general principles that I am illustrating.  My intent was not so much to give you specific locations but to illustrate general principles that can be applied anytime and anywhere.

There are no storms right to watch right now.  This morning some heavy showers came around Fort Pierce near low tide, which was just after 7 AM.  They didn't last long.

The surf is running about 2 - 3 feet today and will decrease a little for the next few days.

We've really had a couple of years with very few periods of good cob hunting along the Treasure Coast.  Things come and go in spurts.  I'm expecting this long dry spell to end some day.

Happy hunting,