Sunday, August 28, 2016

8/28/16 Report - Weather Disturbances. A Few Cheap Finds and Beach Analysis.

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of

The two disturbances nearest us haven't developed much.  They aren't moving very fast either.

The one down by the keys will move into the Gulf.  The other one is still aiming at North Carolina. Gaston is supposed to turn around and head northeast.

We'll have a two to three foot surf, and possibly a three to four foot surf by Tuesday.

I don't expect any significant improvement in beach conditions for finding old shipwreck items, but there will probably be a few (very few) spots like the one that I discussed yesterday around the Treasure Coast.


Yesterday was the first day for a while that I talked about hunting modern items.  That hunt was a purely recreational hunt.  I didn't expect to find anything good and if I was really serious about finding something good,  I wouldn't have bothered with that beach at all.  I was there and just wanted a little relaxation, and there is always some remote chance of something interesting popping up.  What I uncovered was a very common distribution of finds.  That is why I took the time to illustrate it.

I've talked about the math of detecting in the past.  It has to do with probabilities and the value of finds.  The beach I was talking about yesterday is not good for either the quantity or quality of finds. It is not a beach where people wear good stuff and if you find anything much good, it is probably stolen property.

Here are two pictures of the first jewelry item that came out of the jewelry hole that I circled on my illustration yesterday.

It was completely black, as shown on the right, when it came out of the ground.  The picture on the left shows how it looked partly cleaned.

It was one of those rings that rolled down the slope after being uncovered.

I think it is titanium or steel or something like that.  I haven't done any testing yet.  It is unmarked.

Above is a pendant found in the same area.  It was only a couple of feet from the ring.

Both items were obviously lost for a while and both were covered by a black crust and show signs of corrosion.

That beach is so heavily detected that you don't get too many things that aren't newly lost without some waves and erosion.

Above is a bangle bracelet found outside the jewelry hole that I outlined yesterday.  It is typical of the kind of cheap stuff found at that beach.   There are a lot of large hoop ear rings found there too.  The reason I am showing these finds is that they are so typical of this beach and I wanted to illustrate how different beaches produce a different quality of finds.

My main point today, though, is that if you want to maximize the value of your finds, which most people want to do, you should do an analysis.  Consider both quantity and quality of finds.  You can do a partial analysis simply by watching the people at the beach.  If they have cheap stuff or expensive stuff, that is mostly what you can expect to find.  That seems obvious enough.  There are some exceptions, which I won't get into now.

A beach that produces high value targets, such as expensive watches or diamond rings, doesn't have to produce nearly as many targets.

Figure the average value of finds, and then take into account the number of targets.

If your average find is worth 50 cents, for example, and you find an average of ten targets on every visit, the expected find value would be $5.00.

If you can usually find a gold band or something, bringing your total up to an average of maybe $20 per visit, the expected find value at that beach would be about $20.  This is an over simplified example, but I hope you get the idea.

Now lets say there is another location, maybe a very high end condominium beach, where you seldom find anything good, lets say only once every ten visits, (not bad) but the finds include things like Rolex watches or expensive diamond rings that bring your value per visit up to $5000.  The expected value per find at a place like that would be 250 times greater than that of the second example even though nine times out of ten you strike out. There are beaches like that where the finds are rare but valuable.  At those types of beaches, a lot of people might visit a few times and conclude that there is nothing there because the finds are so rare, but it still might be worth hunting because of the high value of the finds.

I talked about this before in greater detail, so I won't get into it any deeper now.

It can take some time to get a decent analysis of a beach.  And, of course, things will change as conditions change.  My main point is to consider both the quantity and quality of finds at a particular beach.  Changing conditions also affect the analysis by changing the probability of different kinds of finds.   A few high-value finds can drastically change the analysis.

Happy hunting,