Friday, November 7, 2014

11/7/14 Report - Seven Metal Detecting Mistakes That I've Made That You Should Avoid. Catching An Asteroid.

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of

Asteroid Capture Apparatus
Source: YouTube Science Channel link posted here.

I've talked before about some of the possibilities for treasure hunting in outer space.  Here is a video showing how they hope to catch an asteroid - nothing like a hemerroid, although catching an asteroid might be a pain in the butt.

Here is the link for the full video.


I've made my share of mistakes. I think of some of them very frequently.  It might be that those are the ones that I've learned the most from.

I'm not sure the mistakes I remember the most are the most important.  Maybe I made some bigger mistakes, but probably those that I remember the most are those that I particularly regretted and made a mental note to avoid in the future.

Here are a few of the mistakes that I've made.  Maybe you can avoid them.

1. Discarding an item in the field when I didn't know exactly what it was.

One time that I often think of is when I dug a twisted piece of metal and then close by a nearly rectangular piece of flint.  That was probably thirty or more years ago but I still remember it very well.   I realized later that the piece of metal was a piece of a musket cock and the flint was the musket flint. 

Now I wish I had kept it.  And by not recognizing what it was at the time, I probably did not hunt the immediate area as well as I should have. 

2.  Not digging an item carefully enough.

Not too far from where the unidentified musket flint was dug, I detected a very nice artifact, but I wasn't careful when digging it.  It was very brittle and completely crumbled as it was dug. 

I guess that hunt was a very memorable hunt for me - both good and bad.  At the time it was mostly good, because I hadn't yet realized the significance of my mistakes yet, and it was the first time I hunted a centuries old battle site.  I remember most of that hunt very well, not just the mistakes.

Most people have probably damaged a coin or something while digging it.  It is a common and sometimes costly mistake.

3.  Not labeling a find with all the important information, including among other things, when and where it was found. 

You will forget some things.   It is good to be able to go back and refer to good detailed notes or labels when you want them.

4.  Losing track of a nice find.  If you are not careful you can lose track of a valued find after you take it home. I suppose everybody loses track of things once in a while. 

A good organized system for keeping finds will help you find that special item when you want it.

5.  Not checking equipment before going out for a hunt and not taking back up batteries and the like.

You can save a disappointing and wasteful trip by checking your equipment first.

6.  Destroying an item through improper cleaning.

Muriatic acid can be used to clean some things, but it will ruin other things. 

Don't tumble things that might be valuable.

I once tumbled a nice guilded pendant that was hundreds of years old.  It was encrusted and I just assumed it was a coin.  It wasn't, and I damaged it.

Try to find out what something is and what it is made of before starting to clean it.  Learn how to best clean an item before doing anything that could damage it.

When something could possibly be valuable, do your research first and then chose the most cautious method of cleaning to begin with. 

You can clean things in steps, using the most cautious methods first.  That can help avoid more costly mistakes.  Those first steps could reveal something about the item or material that will help you decide how to continue.

7.  Putting a find in a pocket that has a hole in it. 

I mentioned the other day how a nice gold chain slipped through a shirt pocket and I had to walk back a mile or more to find it again.

Check your pockets and goody bags.  Chains will quickly slip through a very small hole easier than you might think.

There are seven mistakes that I've learned from.  I can think of others, but don't have time for them all today.  You might already know these, but even if that is so, this will be a good reminder.  We all get lax from time to time.

Maybe you can avoid making the these mistakes.  I hope so.

Happy and mistake free detecting,