Tuesday, September 30, 2014

9/30/14 Report - Portable Antiquities Scheme And The PAS Web Site. Switching It Up.

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

Treasure Coast Lion Head Gold Ring
Find Marked 10K.

I've talked about England's Portable Antiquities Scheme (PAS), which as their web site says, was developed ... to encourage the voluntary recording of archaeological objects found by members of the public in England and Wales. Every year many thousands of objects are discovered, many of these by metal-detector users, but also by people whilst out walking, gardening or going about their daily work.

The PAS has been highly successful because it respects the public and encourages them to be involved and rewards those that make properly reported finds.  That is very much unlike what we have in the United States, which presents the public with a confusing mess of rules and regulations, topped by intimidating penalties.  I once wrote to Tallahassee asking what a person finding a Native American artifact on the beach should do and who they should contact or whatever.  I never received a reply.  A person in this country that finds something would not know what to do and might well be afraid of doing anything.

One of the big problems is that here almost anything and everything is considered historic and is protected.  PAS, on the other hand, defines treasure as being over 300 years old.  In Florida, anything 50 years old is considered historic and protected.  That would include my high school class ring and a lot of my other possessions. 

In Florida, at least the fossil collecting laws are reasonable.  You can obtain a permit to collect fossils on state land (which includes all waterways in the state) for $5.00 per year.  Reporting finds is required.  

But what I wanted to do today is simply point you to the PAS web site.  The web site is a useful tool.  It illustrates the public-friendly attitude of the program.

Here is the link.


The PAS web site makes it clear who to contact, explains the program, answers many questions, explains how to conserve items, how to collect and display items, provides a database of finds, and even gives people advice on selling items that do not qualify under the program if a person finds something that he eventually wants to sell.  In short, it is helpful, treats the public with respect and consideration instead of as a mistrusted enemy, invites participation, and most of all has been very effective.

Take a look.

Don't write and ask me what the metal detecting laws and regulations are in Florida.  As I just said, it is a confusing mess, and I'm not going to try to explain it even if I could.

I noticed a YouTube video testing the Minelab 5000.  It is a  detector costing over $5000 and is designed to be used in the gold fields.  But what struck me most is that it has a setting for fine gold and another setting for larger gold.  In the test that I saw on the video, the "fine gold" setting detected two small nuggets but not two larger nuggets.  Then the other setting was used and the other two nuggets were detected, but not the smaller ones.

To me that just emphasized to me something that I have been learning to appreciate more and more myself.  It takes more than one shot to cover an area well, and using more than one detector can be very helpful.   That is true in any area of size, but especially true in a junky area.  You'll find things with one detector that will be missed by another.  And you'll find things in one mode that will be missed in another mode while using the same detector.  An area that is worth detecting can be covered many times and good targets will still show up.   I challenge you to put that to the test.  If you don't find it true, I'll bet that you are hunting the area the same way every time instead of changing where you focus or how you use your detector or detectors.

I'll also bet that if five different detectorists visit the same site, four of them will hit the same spots.  The tendency is to go to the nice flat open areas.  Some areas simply appear more inviting.  While the types of areas that draw people will most likely be over-hunted, the probability is that there will also be areas that remain overlooked.

To give just one example.  The tag that I showed yesterday was in a yard that had been hunted several times with different detectors.  The tag was found in an area less than a foot wide between a concrete driveway and bushes.  A large coil could not be used there.  And many detectors would have been nearly useless there because of the rebar in the concrete drive way.   To top that off, there was also a iron item buried close to the tag.

Most people tend to see and approach a site the same way over and over again.  If you make an effort to switch things up, I think you'll find that there is more to be found even though you might have hunted the same site before. While most people will make a bee line to those nice inviting areas, the little nooks and crannies can contain a lot of goodies.

Now that September is nearly over I can report that the most read post of August 2014 was the 8/6/14 Report -  Young Boys Find Very Rare and Old Gold Hair Tress.   Fake or Real Escudo?  Error Dime.  Poor Beach Conditions.  It's All About ...  

It is interesting that the most read post was not the post that received the most g+1 clicks.

Coincidentally, the gold hair tress was an item covered by the PAS.

There are only a few hours left to respond to the blog poll.

One area of disturbed weather has been sitting off of North Carolina for a few days now, but it is not likely to form, and it is not likely to affect us.

On the Treasure Coast we are having a two-foot surf.   It will be just a touch less for the next few days.

Happy hunting,

Monday, September 29, 2014

9/29/14 Report - Things That Can Affect Your Metal Detector ID Readings. Depth Readings. Rare Gold Coins.

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

Three Dollar Gold Coin
Source: See link below.
I did a little test using the Ace 250 today.  I wanted to see if the depth meter is very accurate.  I used a new dime and quarter and Tungsten ring for the test. 

The depth meter on the Ace is in two inch increments, starting at 2 inches and going to 8.

I placed the items on the ground stuck a yardstick in the ground beside them and moved the coil over the individual objects at various heights.

With these surface objects, the depth meter worked somewhat but was not real accurate.  I can only characterize it as somewhat accurate - not highly accurate.   

This test was a very crude test, so I won't try to draw a lot of conclusions from it.  My general conclusion is that the metal detector's depth readings for items when tested in this manner does give some idea of depth, but may not be real precise.

I don't know if naturally buried items would result in depth readings that are more or less accurate.  There are limits to how precisely you can measure the depth of buried objects when you dig them anyhow.

When you are leisurely detecting, take time to carefully notice the precise signal and readings and try to remember them and relate them to the actual object when it is dug.  That will help you learn to better understand your detector.

In my estimate, this inexpensive little detector works very well considering the low price.  There are times when I would use it instead of detectors that cost ten times more.  It isn't the deepest seeking detector in the world, isn't always totally accurate, and has other limitations.  It is enjoyable and useful though.  I've previously described my multi-detector approach to some sites.

One side note is that the Tungsten ring was identified as a pull tab on the ID scale.  

The Sinker.
Just after conducting the above test, I spent a few minutes detecting in a yard that had been detected probably twenty times before with different detectors.  In those few minutes I found a couple of interesting things.  First dug was a zinc penny that had obviously been missed before.  It was right beside a lead sinker (see picture), which might be why it was passed over.  The sinker jumped back and forth between penny and dime on the ID meter.  Actual coins read more consistently. 

Also found in those few minutes in the seemingly over-hunted yard was the following Alabama tag which reads 2.5 Alabama.  The tag is 1.25 by 1.5 inches.

It produced a less consistent ID reading than a coin.  When flat on the surface, it was identified as a quarter and half, jumping back and forth.  It also occasionally gave an iron reading.

After digging it up I did a little test to see if I could find out what caused the mixed ID.  When the object was flat on the ground, it read as a coin (jumping between quarter and half), but when I stuck it in the ground so it stood on end and detected over the edge, the ID was iron.

The Alabama Tag.
My most general conclusion is that the position of an object in the ground can affect the ID reading.  Second, an object buried at an angle will give a variable signal as the coil goes over it at different angles and positions.  Sometimes the coil will be more parallel to a slanted object and at other times moving so as to detect more of the edge.  That will result in different types of signals and different IDs.

I decided to try to replicate the experiment with a quarter.  Of course I got a good consistent ID when the quarter was flat.  When I placed it on edge, I got a good reading most of the time, but also, but also now occasionally got the iron ID.  The iron reading with the coin on edge was rare though, unlike with the tag.  The iron reading obtained by detecting the edge of the tag was pretty consistent.

I'm assuming that the more accurate and more consistent ID on the standing quarter was due at least in part to its additional thickness. 

I'm guessing the tag is tin, but don't know that for sure.

I continue to learn more about my detectors and how they respond to various objects. 

Anyone know what that tag is?  Please let me know.  I don't think dog tag, but maybe.

In a nice series of articles on rare coins that can be bought for under $5000.  This one (part 6) is on hree dollar gold coins.


Close Up View Of William M's Found Locket.
A day or two ago I mentioned GoPro.  They make the action cameras that are often used on TV detector and diving shows.  The stock went up another ten dollars, hitting 90 at one point today.

I posted some items found by William M. the other day.  One was a runner medallion.  Bruce B. sent me the following information about that.

 Just a note, I have a cross-country medal my grandfather won in 1910 or 1915 very similar to the medallion here. My grandfather eventually became a Big Ten cross-country champion, but the medal I have at home is for a much smaller venue—a competition in Evansville, Indiana. The piece in your photograph hence would seem to be typical of the period.

Thanks Bruce.  I'm sure William  will really appreciate that info.

Here is a correction concerning the locket I posted yesterday.  William M. sent me a close-up of the locket I showed yesterday.  He says the picture in it is a print rather than a photo.  Notice the dots. 

Today on the Treasure Coast we have a 2 - 3 foot surf.

The surf will be 1 - 2 feet for the next few days.

There is no tropical activity that will affect us.

There is one day remaining to give your response to the blog poll.

Happy hunting,

Sunday, September 28, 2014

9/28/14 Report - Closer View Of Inland Finds. Formation of the Continental Marines. Recruitment Poster.

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

Couple More Finds From William M.
Photo by William.
I didn't show all of William M's finds the other day.  Here are close ups of some that I think are particularly nice.

The locket with picture is especially nice.  That probably had a lot of sentimental value to someone.  William said it looked like a photo.  Wouldn't it be nice to find out who it is or who it belonged to?

Those are a couple of very nice finds from an inland site.

Below is another very nice relic found by William.  That is the kind of thing any relic hunter would like to find.

Thanks for sharing William!

Nie Relic Found By William.
Photo by William.

The summer issue of the Sons of the American Revolution Magazine had an interesting article about the origin of the US Marines. 

The Continental Marines was formed in 1775 by resolution of the Continental Congress.

 Here are excerpts from a recruitment poster that was hung in a tavern.  

What a Brilliant Prospect does this Event Present to every Lad of Spirit who is inclined to try his Fortune in this highly renowned Corps.  The Continental Marines.
When every thing that swims the Seas must be a PRIZE!

Thousands are at this moment endeavoring to get on Board Privateers where they will serve without pay or reward of any kind whatsoever, so certain does their chance appear of enriching themselves by PRIZE MONEY!  What enviable Station then must the CONTINENTAL MARINE hold, - who with far superior advantages to these, has the additional benefit of liberal Pay, and plenty of the best Provisions, with a good and well appointed Ship under him, the Pride and Glory of the Continental  Navy; surely every Man of Spirit must blush to remain at Home in Inactivity and Indolence when his Country needs his Assistance.


YOU WILL RECEIVE Seventeen Dollars  Bounty.  And on your Arrival at Head Quarters be comfortably and genteely CLOTHED.  And Spirited young BOYS, of a promising Appearance, who are Five Feet Six Inches High, will receive TEN DOLARS and equal Advantage of PROVISIONS and Clothing with the Men. 


The Daily Allowance of a Marine when embarked is One Pond of BEEF or PORK.  One Pound of BREAD, Flour, Raisins, Butter, Cheese, Oatmeal, Molasses, Tea, Sugar, etc. etc.  And a Pint of the best Wine, or half a Pint of the Best RUM or BRANDY, togehter with a pint of LEMONADE.  ...

Anyone bringing a recruit to Tun Tavern was promised three dollars.  More information could also be obtained at the tavern.

The capitalization is as it appeared on the original poster.  It appears strange to us.

Here is a trivia question.  Where was the first amphibious landing of the Continental Marines on foreign soil?   Hint: it occurred in 1776.

We sure are having a lot of rain. 

The surf on the Treasure Coast is around 2 - 3 feet.  It will be about that on Monday and then decrease just a touch for a couple of days.

There is nothing in the Atlantic that will affect the Treasure Coast beaches significantly.

That is all for today. 

Only two more days remaining to respond to the blog poll. 

Happy hunting,

Saturday, September 27, 2014

9/27/14 Report - Million Dollar Hoard Found By Metal Detector. Success of Portable Antiquities Scheme. Probability.

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

Seaton Down Hoard
Source: See link.
The Seaton Down Hoard, found by an amateur detectorist, consists of 22,000 coins and is valued at nearly $1.5 million dollars. 

The hoard has the distinction of including the one millionth object reported as a part of England's very successful Portable Antiquities Scheme, which, unlike the American system, rewards those who find and report antiquities.  The PAS has been hugely successful.  Too bad we don't have something similar.

The Seton Down Hoard was located by amateur detectorist, Laurence Egerton.

The Independent reports, Laurence Egerton, 51, a semi-retired builder from East Devon, discovered two ancient coins “the size of a thumbnail” buried near the surface of a field with his metal detector in November last year.

After digging deeper, his shovel came up full of the copper-alloy coins. “They just spilled out all over the field,” he said. “It was an exciting moment. I had found one or two Roman coins before but never so many together.”


 Coin From Seaton Down Hoard
Source: Same link.

This is an interesting article that you'll want to read.

Probability is an interesting subject and very relevant to anyone that takes detecting seriously. 

Skill might be defined as anything you intentionally do in such a way that it increases the probability of success.

Different people will define success differently.  For some it might be finding a valuable object.  For others it might be finding something old.  For others it might be finding a personal item of sentimental value and returning it to the owner.

There are many metal detecting skills.  You can skillfully use a detector, read a beach, or conduct research, to name just a few.

A good knowledge of probability will help you.   It is not something you can be totally precise about, but by deriving a good estimate of the probability of success at different sites or under different circumstances, you can increase your rate of success over the long run.

Just a few basics.  One site can produce a lot of coins but little of much economic value.  Lets say the average gold find at that site is worth $50.  And you make a gold find at that site once every five hunts on average.   That means the average gold find would be  1/5 X 50, or $10.

At another site, the gold is of higher value but you find it less often.  Let;s say the average gold find there is worth $200, but you only make a gold find at that site once every ten trips.   That means your average expected gold find per hunt would be 1/10 X 200 or $20. 

That means that the second site produces more value on average even though you find gold at that site less often. 

There are other things that should be taken into account.  One of those is personal preferences.  

Some people get discouraged easily and like to find something nearly every hunt even if it isn't very valuable, for example.  They might stick to high-probability but low-value sites just because of personal preferences.  Those people are not suited for something like the search for the Atocha.  They would get discouraged and give up way before finding that kind of high-value target.

There is always the element of chance involved in metal detecting.  There are factors which you have no control over, or at least which you did not take into account, that will affect the probability of success.  The element of chance provides a good bit of the excitement of metal detecting.

The history-buff that owns President Eisenhower's Rolex did not accept an auction bid of $475,000.


The other day I was talking about lightning.  You can check for lightning in your area at various web sites.  One is weatherbug.com.


Speaking of probability, what is the probability of being killed by lightning?

The National Safety Council says 1 in 136,011.   That is hugely better than the odds of winning PowerBall.

Here is a link to that site which presents a list of causes of death and the associated probabilities. 


If you go back to your car to avoid lightning, there is a good chance that you will be killed as a pedestrian.   1 in 723.

And if you then drive home, you might consdier that the chance of being killed in a motor vehicle incident (in your lifetime) is 1 in 112.

I know there are a lot of qualifications and ifs, ands and buts.   I'm just having some fun with the numbers. 

I do find it interesting how fears and behavior are so often proved to be irrational when you really get down to the numbers.  

Nobody wants to ban cars even though they kill way more people than guns.  They are just too convenient and too much a part of daily life.

I have more Treasure Coast find photos to show but that is all for today.

There is no weather in the Atlantic to watch now, and the surf on the Treasure Coast remains in the two to three foot range.

Happy hunting,

Friday, September 26, 2014

9/2614 Report - Many Nice Old Metal Detector Finds From Treasure Coast Off-Beach Sites. Lightning Noise In Detectors Lately. GoPro Cameras.

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

Finds by William M.
Photo submitted by William

If you've been having trouble finding much due to poor detecting conditions lately, there are alternatives to hitting the same over hunted beaches. 

I've noticed more than a few opportunities lately.  On the Treasure Coast it seems there has been a lot of construction and quite a few newly demolished buildings.

Bill M. has been finding a lot of really cool stuff.  He has been getting permission to work on private property.

Here is a photo of some of his finds.  There are a lot of really nice finds there.

Congratulations William!

Notice all of the silver coins in the photo.  Below is an example of one very nice Mercury dime in exceptional dug condition.

If you want to find something old, there is a lot of it out there.  I'd say that only a very tiny portion of the old stuff like this has been found.  Most of it is still out there in the ground deteriorating and waiting to be saved.

Many places have not been worked at all, and many that have been worked still hold many very good targets. 

Very Nice Mercury Dime Found by William
Photo submitted by William

Here is a very nice 1917 dime found by William.  It has about $1.50 worth of silver in it, but it is in very nice condition and therefore worth more than that.

1917 D dimes bring good money.

Very good photo William.

Notice all of the silver coins in the photo above.

You might find the relics even more interesting.

Below is one photo showing some buttons and buckles.

Buckles and Other Items Found by William.
Photo by William.
Charm Found by William
Photo by William.

To the right is a nice charm.  It probably had a personal significance to someone -  maybe a runner.  It would be nice to know more about that.

On the left is also what looks like a hair beret and a thimble.

I've found thimbles on the beach where I'd never expect to find them.  I have a hard time telling how old they might be.  I certainly don't know anyone who uses a thimble. today.   They can be centuries old.

And here are a couple more neat finds by William.

Like I always say, There is always some place to hunt and something to be found.  William did his homework and made a lot of great finds.   Thanks for sharing William.  Way to go!

As I write, it is pouring rain again.  I went outside to play around with a detector last evening and the lightning was causing the detector to beep occasionally, sometimes giving a good "bell" tone, which on that particular detector indicates a good target. 

Lightning can cause noise in a metal detector.  I previously mentioned that one of my detectors had been  noisy lately, and I thought it might be developing problems, but I have now decided that the problem was caused by distant thunderstorms, which have almost always been somewhere around the Treasure Coast lately.   Thunderstorms can cause detector noise even when they are miles away.

Gopro makes a really good waterproof camera.  I use one sometimes, but since it is made primarily for action photography, it isn't what I need most of the time.   It is very good technology though, and I've commented on that.

Gopro went public a few months ago and the stock has gone from 24 to over 80.  That is a nice return.

You'll see Gopro cameras used on some of the detecting, treasure hunting and diving TV programs. 

They claim that they will be making a video channel.  That should be good.

Other than one disturbance out in middle of the Atlantic, there isn't much to watch. 

On the Treasure Coast we are having two to three foot seas for a few days.

I have still have more finds to show and know of one other big project that I can't wait to tell you about.

Thanks for your responses to the blog poll.

Happy hunting,

Thursday, September 25, 2014

9/25/14 Report - How To Time Your Water and Wet Sand Hunt Based Upon Tides and Waves. Single Ear Rings Being Paired.

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

Waves Breaking
Can you believe summer is over and we are almost at the end of September?  There is a time for everything.   The Bible says, "There is an appointed time for everything.  And there is a time for every event under heaven."

Anyhow, I've had timing on my mind as it relates to beach detecting.  Whether you hunt in the water or on the beach, timing can be very important.  You will often want to time your hunt according to the tides.

Take a look at the above illustration.   The waves will break where the water gets too shallow for the swells to proceed without being disrupted by bottom features.   (I know that is a gross oversimplification, but it will serve for now.) 

The waves will break where the water gets too shallow relative to the size of the swells  Bigger swells will tend to break in deeper water, while smaller swells will break in more shallow water.  You can therefore get a good idea of how deep the water is from where the waves are breaking and how big they are.

In the illustration above you can see the waves breaking where the water gets more shallow.  

Here is the link that is the source of my illustration.  You can also get more explanation there.


If the swells are small, like they were yesterday, the waves will break right in on the beach front where the water is very shallow.  If the swells are larger, they will break in deeper water where the bottom rises.

I'll call the water area where the waves are breaking zone B.  That zone can be narrow or broad and it can be in deep water or shallow water - again - depending upon the size of the swells and the shape of the bottom.

Zone A is the deeper water where the waves are not yet breaking.  And zone C is where the water surges in after the waves break. 

Unless the waves are small, it can be very difficult to detect in zone B.  Waves that break over your head can be difficult to deal with.  It can knock your ear phones off and generally make things difficult.

It can also be difficult to detect in the rushing water in the shallows if there are strong currents. 

It is usually easier to detect in zone A if the water is not too deep for you.   Zone A is where you'd find the recovery technique I described in my 9/20/14 post most useful.

Sometimes there will be a dip inside of a sandbar.  After the waves break over the sand bar, the water in the dip can be fairly calm and easy to detect.

The three zones will change as the tide goes in and out depending upon a variety of factors that includes the changing depth of water.

How does that affect how you time your visit to the beach?  Time your visit so that you can detect the zone that you want to detect.  In zone A, for example, you will probably want to detect when the tide is out.   Then you'll have more wet sand, but zone A will also now be where there was deeper water before and perhaps where the breaking waves were earlier.

If the waves are fairly big, you will probably want to detect when the breaking waves are not over the area where you want to detect.  Maybe that will be on the sand bar. 

Remember, as the tides get higher, the waves will tend to break in deeper water, and as the tide gets lower, the waves will tend to break closer to shore.   Remember those three zones and think about how they can move with the changing tides.

One other thing I want to point out while I have this illustration up, is the sand bar can move in or out too.  If you remember the experiment I did not long ago, the crashing waves will stir up the sand, causing the sand to move and causing objects to sink.  Very often the waves will break on the one side of the sand bar, stirring up sand and pushing it in.  In that case, the sand bar can move in towards shore, covering up things as the sand bar moves over them.


You know all of those unmatched ear rings that you've found.   According to Kovels Komments, one high-end jewelry store is matching up vintage ear rings that go together well and selling them as a pair.


One thing I forgot to mention in my 9/20 post is that when you go with the flow, you don't have to hold onto your scoop if you have a scoop that will float upright.  Get a scoop of sand in the bucket, and let the scoop go when you get washed off of the hole.  Under normal circumstances, the scoop will be waiting for you when you get returned to the hole.  You can therefore use it as a marker and not have to take the time to relocate the hole by feel.

It is still a good idea to have the scoop tethered to you in some manner.

Source: www.nhc.noaa.gov

As you can see, there is now some weather in the middle of the Atlantic that could develop.  Today on the Treasure Coast the surf will be around two or three feet - a little rougher than it has been.  It might increase a little more in about a week.

The low tides are not getting very low.

Don't forget to respond to the blog poll.

I have a lot of new find photos to show in the near future.

Happy hunting,

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

9/24/14 Report - Reading Trash- Example. Rare Gold Coins Great Investment. Broken Gold Diamond Ring Found. High Value Artifacts.

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

I posted a new poll on the blog.  The responses will help give us a good idea of what people have been doing during this summer of predominantly poor conditions.

I took a look at the beach this morning.  You can see the two pictures here.

It was near high tide.  The waves were crashing over what at low tide would be the wet sand area.

Sand has been building on this beach for a couple of weeks.

That has been the case on many Treasure Coast beaches.

You can see the sea weed - almost always a bad sign.

People talk about reading the beach, and I do that as much as anyone, but nobody seems to talk about reading the trash.

Trash can tell you a lot.  If you are finding pieces of aluminum, for example, that can be an important sign telling you to look elsewhere for objects made of more dense materials.

The trash on this particular beach is interesting.   In the middle of the beach near the main life guard tower, there is only foil.  South and north of there, there are also bottle caps and pull tabs.

In this case it is obvious that the middle of the beach is heavily hunted and both pull tabs and bottle caps are picked up by detectorists.   The north and south ends are not detected as thoroughly though.  That is useful information.

A study of 2013 investments showed that high-end rare gold coins performed better than most any other type of investment.   High-end rare coins performed much better than more common and lower quality gold coins.

Here is the link.


A prehistoric blade that sold for 276,000 dollars at auction this year was only one of many Native American artifacts that sold for very high prices.

Here are some others.


Did you notice the discoidals that sold for over $30,000?   I know of a couple discoidals that were found by shell collectors on Treasure Coast beaches in recent years.

Broken Diamond Ring Found on TC Beach.

Here is a broken diamond ring that was found on a Treasure Coast beach.

It is more common to find gold rings that have a thin break in the band.  This band is broke about in half.

It appears to be a vintage ring.  Notice the setting and diamond cut.

A ring with a break in it will produce a much less loud signal than an unbroken ring.

This one produced a small signal, of course.  It is not a heavy band to begin with.

The surf was only about two feet this morning.  It looked like more, but that is because it was breaking right at the base of the beach.  The period was short too - about 4 seconds.

I discussed the importance of the wave periods a day or two ago.

There is nothing at all in the way of tropical storms out there right now.  

Happy hunting,

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

9/22/14 Report - Gold Coin Found Nearly 3000 Years Old. Identifying Treasure Traps. Greatest U.S. Buried Treasure Ever Found. Joy of Problem-Solving.

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

Very Old Gold Coin Found by Diver.
Source: See link.

A diver saw a flash of a gold coin on the bottom while diving in shallow water.  The flash came from this coin, thought to be nearly 3000 years old.  It weighs only .63 grams.

Here is the link.


Keep your eyes open.

Always be on he lookout for treasure traps too.  They can be found in a lot of different kinds of places and can collect items over long periods of time.   Not only can they collect items, but they often protect items from being found by other detectorists.

Lets start with sidewalks and roadways.   If there is a concrete walk leading up to your house, go out and drop a coin on the walk and see where it goes.   If it rolls, it might end up in the crack beside the walk.   Not only will things collect in the crack beside the walk, but they will likely not be found there.  For one thing, there is a good chance they will stand on end, and that makes it difficult to detect.   If the walk or driveway is concrete, it will likely have iron rebar in it that will keep many detectorists from detecting close to it.  So even if the site has been heavily detected, there is still a good chance that anything lost right beside the walk or driveway will still be there.

Some detectors can be operated closer to things like that than others.   With experience you can learn to detect around traps like that, getting at least some of those items.  Play around with your detector settings.   Also the sweep angle.  Maybe switch to a small coil. 

It could be an area where you can't use a detector very well but where you can dig and use a sifter.  Think of alternative methods for getting items out of spots that are difficult to detect.  

The key is to keep thinking about where there might be traps that will collect items and how you can detect or retrieve them.   A lot of detectorists will simply miss some of the best areas simply because an area is not well suited to their hunting style or techniques.

Tree roots can also trap items.   Not only can they trap items, but they will also protect items from other detectorists.  Some detectorists won't detect closely around obstacles or will give up digging when they hit a stubborn root.

Rocks can trap things too.  I've found gold rings under rocks on the beach. 

The currents will speed around rocks that are too big to be moved by the water, and that will move the sand and items will slip into the deepening depression.

I do not intend to give you an exhaustive list here, just a few examples to get you thinking.  I won't spoil all the fun of problem-solving for you, but as you scan a site always be alert to possible treasure traps and think about where things might be protected from other detectorists.

On a beach and in the water there various types of natural and man-made traps.

When I take a vacation or visit a new location, it seems that alarms are always going off in my head as I notice treasure traps and begin to drool over how much treasure has probably accumulated, and then my mind switches to thinking of different techniques for getting it out.  A whole lot of the fun for me is in the problem-solving process.

Coins from the famed Saddle Ridge Hoard, said to be the greatest buried treasure ever found in the United States, will be on display Oct. 9 - 11 at the PNG show in New York.  The display will include 50 of the found coins along with the rusty containers. 

One of the coins on display will be the finest known surviving example of a 1866-S Double Eagle without the motto.

Here is the link for more information on that.


There are no storms brewing in the Atlantic or Gulf.

The surf along the Treasure Coast today will be around one foot.  It won't be much bigger than that for a week or two. 

Happy hunting,

Sunday, September 21, 2014

9/21/14 Report - Mystery Object. Wreck Of The Civil War Blockade Runner Mary Celestia. More On Missing Treasure Hunter.

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

Anybody have an ideas what this is.  I haven't posted many mystery items lately.  This one has no metal in it.   I don't know if it is naturally formed or was made.

 It is made of compressed bits of shell or conglomerate.  There are no signs of rust or anything like that.

As it is, it would make a decent candle holder.

Here are two pictures.  Below is a close-up.

What do you think?   Any ideas appreciated.

The Mary Celestia was a Civil War iron-hulled sidewheel steamship that sank near Bermuda. It was a blockade runner.

Bermuda is surrounded by more than 150 shipwrecks.

It was discovered in 1505 by Spanish explorer Juan de Bermudez.

It wasn’t until Hurricane Bill in 2009 that Mary Celestia would reveal more of its secrets. On August 22, 2009, Hurricane Bill passed 80 miles off Bermuda, with 75-mileper- hour winds that knocked out power and sent massive waves crashing into the south shore. As surges washed over the reefs and around Mary Celestia, tons of sand, close to eight feet deep on the wreck and packed into the tight spaces inside the bow, were removed, along with the 12 sandbags Rouja placed there in 2006. Revealed were a single corked and still full bottle of wine, the corner of what appeared to be a wooden case, and also the entire starboard side of the stern of the ship—something Rouja had never seen in all his years of diving the site. Rouja photographed the site, retrieved the bottle of wine for analysis, and placed fresh sandbags in the bow. (Excerpt from the article linked immediately below.)

This is a good article about the history and partial excavation of the Mary Celestia.


Close-up View Looking Into the Hole
Of The Mystery Object.

I've talked about using magnets or other items to remove iron from junky sites before detecting.  Some sites without a lot of iron have a lot of aluminum near the surface.  Older items can be beneath that.   Instead of using the types of tools that I've described for removing iron junk, I've found a pole with a sharp nail on the end helpful for removing aluminum junk.   Save the aluminum for recycling.

Here is another article on missing Tommy Thompson, the missing Treasure Hunter.   He is the fellow that who discovered the SS Central America and was last seen in Vero.


Right now there is no indication of any tropical storms forming that could affect the Treasure Coast in the near future.

We are getting close to the time when we normally get our first good Fall storm -  normally October or November.

The Treasure Coast surf will be down around one or two feet for at least a couple of days.

Happy hunting,

Saturday, September 20, 2014

9/20/14 Report - How To Metal Detect In Water During Big Waves. Importance of Wave Periods. New Billy the Kid Photo. Atocha Finds.

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

Photo of Billy the Kid.
Source: See link.

This photo could be a newly found photo of Billy the Kid.

Here is the link to that story.


I haven't talked much about the importance of wave periods, but the time between waves can be important, especially to water hunters.

Two days ago I'd say the wave period was 12 seconds or more.  What difference does that make?   A slow, or should I say long, wave period makes water hunting easy even when the waves are relatively big. 

Much smaller waves can be a real pain to work in if the time between them is short, which was the case about a week ago.  They just keep hitting you every second or two.

Here is a technique that I use to work in big waves.  This technique requires the water to be at least waist high.

When you get a signal, dig a hole immediately over the target.  The hole does not have to be accurate.  That first hole will serve as a marker.  If it is not right over the target, you'll quickly find that out.

Put your foot at the lip of the hole.  You can find it by feel.  I'm assuming that the water is rough and you can't see the hole. 

Then run your coil over the area again to get a better fix on the target.  Note the position of the target. Note if the target is under the hole or if the target is to the front, back, right or left of the hole. 

You will want to dig between swells.  The longer the wave period is, the more time you will have to dig between waves.

Sizable swells in fairly deep water will lift you and push you towards shore.  However, as the wave passes, it will also return you to where you started.  (See illustration below.)

That is the important part.  You need to realize that the water will move you one direction and then the next.  If you locate yourself over the hole during the low water between swells, when a wave comes it will move you towards shore but then return you back to the hole again.

I talked about this a little back in 2012.

Here is the link to that post.  http://treasurebeachesreport.blogspot.com/2012/05/52112-report-shallow-water-detecting-in.html

Movement of Object in Waves.
You will move the same way as the small circle shown in this illustration if you do not keep your feet on the ground.

The trick is to go with the water instead of fighting against it.  

As each wave passes, lift your feet and go with the flow.

You won't have to watch for waves.  You will learn to know by the feel when a wave is coming.  You will feel it suck you towards the wave before it hits you.  You will also learn when to pick up your feet.

You can use this technique in fairly shallow water (around waist deep).  If the water is that shallow, lift your feet and sort of sit down so you float with the swell.  The water will then take you and return you to the hole where you will be able to dig again.   Repeat this as many times as necessary.

You can see an animation of the above illustration at the following site.


To sum it up, after making your first hole, when a wave comes, go with it and when it returns you to your spot, find your hole with your foot and dig again.  You'll be digging on each return cycle.

The longer the wave period, the more time you'll have between waves to dig.  When the wave period is as long as it was the other day, it can be done very leisurely.

There is no need to wear dive weights.  And there is no need to waste energy fighting against the water.

Just learn to go with the flow.

If the wave periods are very short and the waves are coming so rapidly that you don't have any time to operate during what I'm calling the return cycle, you can't use this technique.

You won't be able to use this technique in much less than  chest deep water unless you learn the sit down technique.   

This technique is difficult to describe.  I hope you get the idea.

The Fisher organization says,  The Dare and her crew had a productive week by finding a silver coin and many ballast stones in the deep mud just to the northwest of the Atocha Main Pile area. Recovering silver from the deep mud is very encouraging for two reasons. The first is that it gives us an indication that there probably is more in this area. The second is that these artifacts will generally be in very good condition due to the anaerobic environment the mud provides.

A couple more emeralds were found at Emerald City too.   (Received by email.)

If you want to see the shipwreck wood I described yesterday, it was south of Dollman beach and is probably still there.

The surf on the Treasure Coast is now down to around two feet again.  It will stay that way for a while.

The wave period is now about 10 seconds.  You can find that on the surfing web site.

Secondary swells can complicate things a little.

The tides are now pretty flat.

Happy hunting,

Thursday, September 18, 2014

9/19/14 Report - Shipwreck Wood Found on Beach Not Far From Anchor. International Talk Like A Pirate Day Today. Response To Life Is A Beach Post.

Written by the Treasureguide for the exclusive use of treasurebeachesreport.BlogSpot.com.

Big Piece of Wood With Iron and Concretion
Found on Beach
Just in:  This is International Talk Like a Pirate Day and you can get a dozen free donuts at Krispy Kreem if you wear a pirate costume, or one free donut if you talk like a pirate.


Yesterday I took a look at some of the beaches.  The surf was up pretty good.  The day before I didn't think the waves got as big as predicted.  The waves were forming nicely yesterday, and there were a lot of surfers out.

At one Treasure Coast beach the waves were breaking right at the base of the front beach.  It was really pounding (See photo below.).   But at the other beaches that I looked at, the waves were breaking 50 to a 100 yards out (See video.).  The video shows where everyone was surging.  That is also the area where the piece of shipwreck wood was found.

At two beaches that do not normally have a lot of shells there was a good heavy shell line near the high tide line.   They weren't big shells, but there were a lot of them.  There were also a few pieces of fossils.

All of the beaches that I saw were built up and very mushy.  Very poor beach detecting conditions.

I promised a photo of the piece of wood that I think could be a piece of shipwreck wood.  Here are three.

The wood is bigger than it looks in the photos.  I'd say just over four feet long and nearly a foot thick.

In the photo above you can see the end of an iron band that goes around what I'll call the back side of the plank.   The iron band is mostly covered by light grey concretion.

Front View of the Same Piece of Wood - Flat Side


Other Side of the Piece of Wood _ Worm Eaten and More Rounded.
In this photo the grey concretion covers the iron band.

This piece of wood was found south of Dollman Beach, where a year or two ago an old anchor was found in the water.   My 8/18/12 post told about that.

In that post Bill F. told about how he found a piece of a wreck near there, and mentioned that the America sank near there.

Here is the link to that post.


Remember, you can use the search box on the first page of the blog.

Here is a video showing the surf down that way yesterday.  Good chest high waves breaking out a good ways.

I don't know if you can see the surfers in this small video.

And below is a photo of the shipwreck beach where the waves were pounding right at the base of the beach.

In my 9/17/14 post I wrote about my dad and I.  I didn't know if I should post that in this blog, but I decided to just based upon my gut feeling.  I just felt like I should do it and maybe it would help someone.

It didn't fit in with the types of things that I usually post, and I didn't know how people would react.  As it turns out, I didn't need to worry about that.  

Those who detect are a special group.  They appreciate the past.   They are generally kind and care about people and family.  They do the "right" thing and are glad to return valuable found items when they can. 

I received a lot of emails from people who appreciated that post.  Below is a pretty typical example from Mike T.

Here is what Mike said.

Thanks for sharing that.... In this crazy world we tend to gloss over things that don't affect us directly. The slight glimpse of your world reminds me that that we should never take things for granted or be too busy with life to appreciate those we love and who have given us so much. Life is short and before you know it things change....like the beach.  I haven't read your blog for months as I have been busy with life and family. For some unknown reason this evening I clicked the link in my favorites.  I am thankful. :)


I couldn't have said it better Mike.

Many detectorists detect with family members.  Some got started because of their dad, and some introduced their dad or mom to the hobby. 

I always enjoy seeing a father teaching a young boy how to detect at the beach.  One of my favorite photos is of me showing my then ten-year-old nephew how to detect.  My dad and mom were at the beach with me when I found my first ring.  I remember it well.  I remember my dad's reaction when I showed it to him.

Mike mentions that he read the blog that day "for some unknown reason."  I also posted that post for "some unknown reason."  I just felt it.  Part of it was in tribute to my dad.  It was also probably cathartic.  But a lot of it was that there was just something in the back of my mind telling me to do it.

I strongly believe that there is a lot more than we see or know.  I heed feelings and impulses.  When I detect I listen to my feelings and impulses.  I might for some unknown reason  on impulse visit a new site or wander over to a particular spot.  

Many readers were able to relate to something I said.  Maybe it helped somebody.   Many of us will go through something similar.  People are people.  We all have challenges in life.  We are all unique, yet all have a lot in common. 

About that post, Karen wrote   ... It will impact those that are in that place. For others, maybe they will store it away for later. Thank you.

My hope is that when I write things like that "for some unknown reason," someone somewhere will deeply benefit some how.  That makes it all worthwhile.

On the Treasure Coast the surf is supposed to be 2 - 3 feet today and then decrease slightly for a couple of days.

There isn't much in tropics to watch other than one disturbance just coming off of Africa.

Happy hunting,

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

9/18/14 Report - How To Make A Very Portable Inexpensive Multi-purpose Sifter & Good Surfing This Morning

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

Basic Portable Sifter With
One of Two Removable Floats.

There are times when sifting is better than detecting.  For example when targets are packed so densely that it is a waste of time to pinpoint and dig each target individually.   Sifting is also good when you are hunting non-metallic items, such as shells, sea glass or fossils.

Another time when sifting can be good is when there is a lot of junk, shells or stones or something like that, which can make finding small targets in a scoop difficult.  Just dump the contents in the sifter so you can spread it all out.

I made the sifter shown in the photo and have used it on various occasions.

You'll see other articles giving instructions on how to make a sifter, but this one is a little different from most of those.  Most sifters that you'll see are heavy and rigid and can not be so easily modified for different situations.

I prefer a light-weight flexible sifter, rather than one of those heavy rigid jobs.  This one can easily be rolled up and easily carried a good distance along with your other equipment.

Another reason I prefer this one is I can hold the sides where the boards are and by repetitively pulling the boards apart in short bursts, the sifter bounce the material which will sift more quickly that way.

The floats aren't always needed but can easily be attached or removed depending upon your preferences and the situation.  The sifter will actually float without them.  It just depends upon how much flotation you want.

The floats can be easily attached, either above or below the boards, very quickly and easily by using three plastic slip ties.  Just clip them if you want to remove them again.

A simple rope can be used to tie the sifter to a tree or some other stationary object while you detect or dig.

As you can see, I simply got some 1/4 inch chicken wire.  Cut it into a square.   Then put a small board above and below the edge of the wire, and nailed the boards together to hold the wire, and did the same thing on the opposite side.

I only did this on two sides because that allows me to roll up the sifter, and it also gives me more control over the sifter and how I use it.

I found a couple of those floats along the road one day.   I could cut them to the exact length of the boards but didn't find that necessary.

When working in very shallow water, the floats just get in the way.

The sifter can be used by one person, but if you have a partner and make it a two-person operation you'll seldom need the floats.

If you use the floats, attach them either above or below the boards, depending upon how high you want the sifter to float.  The boards make good handles.

If you plan on dumping a shovel full of heavy material onto the sifter all at once or are working alone in deep water, you'll probably want to use the floats and add boards to the two open ends

But if you are working shallow water, which is where I was the last time, you won't need that.

I'll should make a video or at least take a few pictures of the sifter in operation.

Well, it didn't look to me like we got the predicted 4 - 6 foot surf yesterday, but I found some good swells and waves this morning.  The waves were forming nicely and there were a lot of surfers.  The beaches were awful mushy though.   Very poor detecting where I was.   It seems the northern end of the Treasure Coast got more surf than the southern end, but I didn't see that.

I did see a nice old piece of shipwreck wood down by where an anchor was found either last year or the year before.  I'll have a picture of that for you by tomorrow.

There aren't any storms to watch now.

The surf is supposed to decrease the next two days.  And the tides are pretty flat now.  They aren't going down very much.

I'll have to get out to check some more beaches to see if I can find any of the effects of today's slightly higher surf.

I also need to get around to taking some more find photos.

There is one big project that I can't wait to show you, but I can't talk about it yet.  Really fun and amazing.  Someday I'll be able to show you all of those finds.

Happy hunting,

9/17/14 Something Different. Life Is A Beach or Me and Dad. Not a Beach Report.

Written by the Treasure Guide for the exclusive use of treasurebeachesreport.BlogSpot.com.

Life is a beach.  That is what they say. 

I don't know what that means, but as I think about it, in some ways it seems to be true.

A beach constantly changes, and so does life.  That is one way that saying is true.

Oh does life change!   Completely upside down and backwards.  It changes.

My dad grew up without a father.  His father disappeared before he was old enough to know it.  And his mother was not much more than a child herself. 

Dad grew up on the streets.  Good thing he was tough.  Or was that what made him so tough?   It had to be both.

He taught me a lot, even when neither of us realized it.

He was there.  He gave me more than he had.  His father wasn't there.

He wasn't gentle.   He didn't know how to be.  He was a fighter.  That is all he knew how to be.  That is the only choice he had.

But he made sure I had what he didn't.   I had someone to rely upon, as sure as the sun would rise and set.  That is something I would never question.  It was just always there.

He was caring but didn't know how to express it.  Yet he did express it - like a rock.  It didn't look like or sound like caring.  It wasn't easy to see the caring, but it was always there. 

It was never in words.  He was no Mr. Rogers.   Few words.  Always tough.  Always strong.  Never wavering.  Never yielding.  Something you could always rely on.   Anyone that knew him knew who to call on when they were in a pinch and needed someone who could handle the situation.

Years and years and years went by.  I only knew the rock.   Then he got dementia.

He grew up in town, but later moved out in the country a bit, where a relative let him, his mother and a couple other children live in a small shack. 

As a child he would run four miles to town. And I do mean ran. He always pushed himself to the max.  He had no other transportation and went into town to do any work he could find. 

Eventually he played high school football one season and caught the attention of a couple of big time college scouts but dropped out of school as soon as football season was over because he was working nights at a glass factory and couldn't keep going to school.

He thought he could overcome anything if he went at it hard enough.  It seemed to me that he could.

This time he couldn't.  He lost his ability to communicate. 

I started out saying life is a beach.  In some ways it isn't.  But it does change.

My mother had become the strong one.  She helped my dad do every little thing.

One day my dad when I was visiting my dad got upset at something.  I don't know what.  He couldn't really tell you.  He decided to run away.

He went out the front door, and I saw him trying to run down the road.  He was moving slowly and with a limp.   He only got a short distance before he stumbled and fell.  I caught up with him.  

His glasses were off one ear.   I noticed a spot of blood on his face.

The man I always relied on fell in a ditch.  I could only think of the boy that I only knew as a man. 

In his mind he might have been a boy again, running like he always did, but his body wasn't able now.

I reached down to pick him up.  He never took help.  He always gave it.  He wouldn't take my hand.

He got up.  I took his hand and walked him back to the house. 

I held the hand that I previously knew only as strong.  I don't know that I ever held it before.

I couldn't help think of how he ran as a child.  He ran and ran and ran to run away from the parts of his childhood that he didn't like. 

In my mind, I could see that strapping boy running, but through my eyes I saw something else. 

He no longer had the strength that he relied on almost all of his life - neither of body or mind. 
He no longer had what he always relied on, and neither did I.  It was the hardest day of my life.

Now I had to be the one.  That was new and strange territory for me.

That was six years ago now.  Now I take care of mom.  She relied on dad too, even more than I.  I do my best, but I can't replace him.  It's foolish to even think of it that way, but I do the best I can.

I said that life is a beach, and in at least one way that is true.  Life does change.

I know that is not what you were looking for today, but for those of you who are always wondering who I am, now you know a little something about that.

I might get a regular beach report posted later.  Don't know.

Happy hunting,

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

9/16/14 Report - Couple of TC Beach Finds From Yesterday. How To Identify A Meteorite. 3000-Year-Old Sword Found In River By Teenager Washing Hands.

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

Here are a couple of items found yesterday on the Treasure Coast. 

First a gold religious pendant, and below a silver ring.  They were found pretty close to each other.

Here is some good news.   A bump up in the Treasure Coast surf is predicted for  tomorrow - four to six feet.

According to the predictions, tonight the wind will shift and will be coming out of the northwest for a while, and tomorrow out of the west. 

As much as I'm eager to see something other than the one or two foot surf that we've had almost all summer, I'm disappointed to see that tomorrow the swell will be out of the east.   That doesn't suggest a lot of erosion.  Anyhow, it should be enough surf to move a little sand around. 

Another unfortunate thing is that the tides are getting flat again.    We just can't seem to get anything going this summer.   Surely Fall will bring some erosion. 

I've been playing around with a Dual Surf PI lately, and I'd say that a lot of people probably swing that one too fast.    If you use a pulse, or any detector for that matter, you might want to try slowing down your swing. You can fall into the pattern of wanting to cover a lot of ground and in the process miss some of the better targets.

Have you ever found what looks like an unusual stone with your metal detector?  I think all of us have.   Chances are that it is simply some sort of junk or melted metal, but there is a slight chance that it could be a meteorite.

Every once in a while I receive an email asking if some found object is a meteorite.  I'm not good at identifying meteorites, and would never attempt to do it form a photo alone, so please don't ask me to do that.

 Florida is not a great place for finding meteorites.  It is too wet, which causes meterorites to corrode.  It is too swampy and mostly covered by vegetation, which makes it difficult to find meteorites.   But they are occasionally found here.  I know of a few meteorites that have been found on Treasure Coast beaches.

They are difficult to identify - at least for anyone that doesn't have that experience or training.  There are, however, some things to look for. 

It should stick to a magnet.  It should be fairly heavy.  It might have a crust that was created by heat.  It should show evidence of melting and pock marks.   It should contain nickel, which is relatively rare on earth.

If you can't identify your possible meterorite, there is a place where you can send them to be tested and identified.

Here is a link to a web site that gives the basics for identifying a meteorite.  The company also provides a meteorite identification service and will buy meteorites.


Like a always say, it is a good idea to keep mystery objects until you get them identified. 

A teenager was washing his hands in a river and hit a pointed object.  It turns out he found a 3000 year old sword.

Here is the link to that story.


Cabo San Lucas got hit by a big hurricane.   Cabo is a high-end resort for celebrities.  That would be a good place for metal detecting this week.   Hope everyone down there is well and they get their lives back in order soon.

That is all for today.

Happy hunting


Monday, September 15, 2014

9/15/14 Report - Treasure Hunter Last Seen in Vero Being Sought By Feds. Edouard Heads North. Solar Storms. Hurricane Hits Cabo. Nice Calm Ocean.

Written by the Treasure Guide for the exclusive use of treasurebeachesreport.blogspot.com.

Predicted Track of Edouard.
Source: www.nhc.noaa.gov
If you noticed more noise in your ear phones than normal lately it could be from the combined effects of two solar storms that hit the earth Saturday.

I have been noticing more noise for at least a couple of weeks now.  I don't know if it is because of the solar storms or not.

Up North the  aurora borealis was brilliant.  (If you've never seen that, it is something to see.)

The following CNN article says, Solar storms can knock out power, interfere with GPS and radio communications -- including those on commercial airliners -- and damage satellites.

Here is the link.


There are places on some beaches where your detector will normally chatter a lot as the result of radio or other electromagnetic interference.  Sometimes it seems to be coming from a particular building or radio tower.   Some of those places I've noticed causing detector noise for decades.

There was a guy that told me he thought his detector worked best on the beach front when he swung the coil parallel to the beach.  He thought it was because of the earth's magnetic field.  It is much more likely that he did better when swinging the coil north to south because the water creates salt lines and sand ripples that run along the beach.  

It wasn't long ago that I posted links to reports published by Odyssey Marine Explorations describing the salvage of the SS Central America.  It appears that the fellow that originally salvaged that wreck has disappeared.  He was last seen at a mansion in Vero Beach, but the feds don't know where he is now.  He took off with millions of dollars of gold coins and treasure and evidently didn't pay his investors.  It reads like a made-for-TV story.  Very interesting read!


Thanks to James H. for sending me that link!

This morning the water was calm along the Treasure Coast.  Very pleasant weather!  Visibility in the water was very good.

Here is one local beach near low tide this morning.   Notice the sand bar that formed on the front of the beach.

A few coins were found along the dip.    Nothing in the middle of the bar, as you would expect.

At another beach with a similar bar on the front of the beach, objects were found in the shallow water.  They were mostly recent drops, but did not seem to be sinking rapidly.  The currents there were very gentle, and that is also where the sand that made the bar was coming from.

I always like a beach with some features.   The features help you to see how things are shaping up and that will give you a good idea about where to spend your detecting time.

Some of my finds this morning were obviously very recent drops, while others appeared to have been out there a little longer. 

Take a good look at objects to try to determine how long they might have been there.   That type of information can be a big help.  

Happy hunting,

Saturday, September 13, 2014

9/13/14 Report - Problems With Air Tests. How To Test Your Metal Detector. Buried Objects and Disappearing Signals. Tropical Storm Edouard.

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

Source: www.nhc.noaa.gov
Not long ago I said the best way to compare detectors is to take the detectors out in the field and compare them on targets that have not yet been dug and compare the signals.  That gives you a comparison in the specific environment.   I'll explain my ideas on testing detectors today and explain some of the problems with some common approaches.

Everybody knows about air tests.  One of the problems that I have with air tests is that the test targets are often not the best.  People tend to use a clad coin of one denomination or another.  As I've explained before, unless you want to find a clad coin, that is not the most relevant test.   Different detectors react to different types of targets differently, therefore you should use test targets that include the types of things you are most interested in finding.  A single test target won't tell the entire story. 

Some people use a nickel because it has a relatively low conductivity, supposedly something like gold, but however true that might be, few gold items are shaped like nickels.   Most gold targets are not solid disks and few are as thick as a nickel.

One big problem with air tests is that they usually aren't done in the type of environment where you will actually use your detector.  They are often done in a house or yard, where there are power lines, underground cables or other sources of electrical interference.  Some detectors react better than others around sources of electrical interference.  That will affect your air test results.  Most beaches are relatively free of electromagnetic interference.

An air test does give you a little information, but it isn't a very good test for comparing detectors or for figuring out how deeply real targets can be detected in the field.

Another approach is to take the detector out and dig a hole and bury a target and then see how deeply the target can be detected.  Of course, for that test to be most accurate, the target should be buried in the type of ground you intend to hunt.   Some detectors will work better in dry ground, others in wet  salt sand, etc. 

Even if you are in the right type of sand or soil, you will not get an extremely good  measure using a newly dug hole.   A target in a newly dug hole will NOT give the same response as a target that has been buried for a good amount of time.

You've probably heard about the "halo effect."  Supposedly a naturally buried object will have a halo effect and therefore give off a stronger signal than a newly buried target.   I won't get into how the halo effect is supposed to work, or even what it is, but I can say that a newly buried target won't give the same signal as a naturally buried target that has been in the ground a while.

Have you ever dug a hole to get a target in the wet salt sand and you couldn't find the target in your scoop or in the hole?   It seemed to disappear.

Here are some things that could have happened.  The object could have slipped down deeper in the hole, or it could now be sticking to the side of the hole and standing on edge, thus presenting less surface area for the detector to detect.  Those are two ways that a target can seem to disappear in a hole, but there is another.

Go to a beach where there is compact wet salt sand.  Dig a hole.  Now run your detector over the hole.  If you are in all-metals mode, you might well get a signal from the hole where you disturbed the sand. 

If you can find some black sand and run your coil over it, you might get some false signals, but if you dig a hole in the black sand, or even disturb the smooth black sand, you'll probably get a bigger signal from that.

If you don't get a signal from the disturbed sand of a new hole or the black sand, your detector is probably canceling that source of noise out and you'll therefore likely be getting less depth.

The thing is, a newly dug hole will change the ground, either causing false signals or changing your ground balance so that your detector is less sensitive.  That is another way an object can get lost in a hole,  The hole itself disturbs the ground, which can cause false signals or a change how your detector is ground balanced.

Another problem with digging a fresh hole in sand, especially wet sand, is that the entire matrix changes.   Just watch a newly dug wet sand hole.  Water will come in and fill it.  Sand and shells will move about and settle,  And if you threw a coin into that hole, you saw where and how it was before you covered it, if that is what you did, but you won't know how or where it settled after that.

Since a target in a newly dug hole will settle, and since a newly dug hole disturbs the sand and creates false signals or changes the detector's ground balance, I do not find newly buried objects a good way to test a detector on a target.   The sand or soil in a newly dug hole is not settled like the sand or soil surrounding a naturally buried object.  And it may have not had time to create a halo effect. 

To me, setting the object on the ground where you intend to detect, and then raising the coil above the object is just as good, or in my opinion, a better way to go.  That way the detector will be responding to the natural undisturbed ground in that area.   It is true that you won't be detecting "through" that type of ground, but if your settings are right, that won't matter much.   I think you will get as good an estimate of depth by raising the coil over an object on the surface as by digging a hole and disturbing the ground. 

Also,if you experiment a little, you'll see that an object in a very well packed area will generally give off a better signal than the same object buried in course material, such as course shell sand.


As you can see there are three areas of weather to watch.  (See map at top of post.) The weather system that has been bringing us wind and rain has now moved into the Gulf.

Edouard is still out in the Atlantic, and there is one more disturbance following Edouard.

On the Treasure Coast we still have a small surf and fairly good tides.

Happy hunting,