Saturday, March 18, 2017

3/18/17 Report - Some Real Gems. Teenager Finds 7.44 Karat Diamond. Atocha Emeralds Auctioned.

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of

877 Karat Emerald Known As La Gloria To Be Auctioned April 25.
Source: CNN link below.

This seems to be the week for gems. Huge gems are in the news, including some from the Atocha.

On April 25, the public will have the opportunity to own some of the most magnificent and valuable emeralds in the world, when they go up for sale at Guernsey's auction house in New York...

One of the highlights of the sale is a collection of cut emeralds from the great Spanish shipwreck Nuestra SeƱora de Atocha, a galleon that sank off the Florida coast in 1622...

Here is the link for more about that.


Diamonds are in the news too.

An Arkansas teenager hit the jackpot Saturday when he found a 7.44-carat diamond at the Crater of Diamonds State Park in Arkansas.

Many people spend hours searching for diamonds at the park only to walk away empty-handed, but Kalel Langford, 14, had only been at the park with his parents for 30 minutes when he spotted a shiny, dark brown gem, according to a statement.  Kalel took the stone to the park’s Diamond Discovery Center later in the day and learned that the shiny rock was actually one of the largest diamonds ever discovered in the park...

Here is the link for more on that story.

I've written about Crater of Diamonds State Park in Arkansas where anyone can pay a fee and hunt diamonds.  The story about how it was discovered is interesting.  A hog farmer discovered a diamond in the mud.  I've told that story before.

Thanks to Dean for leads on both of the above stories.


An African church minister who supplements his meagre stipend by scrabbling for minerals in the artisanal mines of Sierra Leone has discovered one of the largest diamonds ever found.

The stone is to be auctioned, the Sierra Leonean government announced yesterday, although its value cannot be determined until its quality is assessed. An 813-carat diamond was sold at closed auction in London last month for £51m...

And here is that link.

I once got an email from a woman saying that her husband was talking about buying a metal detector and quitting his job.  She wanted to know if he could really make a living doing that.  I gave her my answer and she replied saying her husband wasn't going to be happy.

Well, first of all, most people don't metal detect for a living.  Very few do.  And there is a good reason. Most would dismally fail.   It is not something you can do that easily.

I remember years ago seeing people yelling "get a job" at a detectorist that was metal detecting in the water near Miami Beach.  I don't know if they actually thought he had no job and was detecting as a living, but it seemed like they did. Some people (very few) are professionals detectorists.  Some some people are obviously hobbyists, but I guess it might not be so obvious is if you don't know much about it.  The number that are professonals must be something like one percent of one percent of all detectorists.  That is my guess.

In the old days the professionals tried to remain invisible.  (I'm talking about detectorists here, not treasure salvors.)  The pros intentionally flew below the radar.  They didn't want to be seen or known. Today it isn't like that.  At least not entirely.  Some today do whatever they can to publicize and promote themselves.

But back to the point I wanted to make.  You can't just buy a detector and go out and expect to make a living at it.  If you are one of the few that can make a living out of it, you first have to put in a lot of time before you get to that skill level.  And it isn't easy.  You can't just go out and wave a detector around and expect to make any kind of profit.  For one thing, you have to be where there is a lot of things to find, such as South Florida.  You can't squeeze gold out of a beach that has none.  If you don't live near excellent detecting, you have travel time and travel expenses to deal with.

Most hobbyists don't keep track of expenses.  Metal detectors are expensive.  Many cost a thousand dollars or more.  And if you are hitting it hard you have more than one and you've gone through several.

Scoops are expensive too.  Then there are pinpointers, batteries, parking fees, detector repairs, wetsuits, etc. etc.  That is a lot of expense  before you can think about making any kind of profit.  I'm sure that most detectorists don't cover expenses.  Most don't really try to.

Some people that I know have paid thousands for a metal detector just because they enjoy playing with it.  They don't really care if they are making a profit.  They enjoy the activity and what they find is just icing on the cake.

Serious metal detecting can also be very strenuous.  I could not today do what I used to do.  There were times when I would walk miles and worked in very rough conditions.  There were times that it was very dangerous.  I wouldn't do some of that today.

I liked to test myself and see what I could do.  It wasn't a profit motive that drove me.  I had some good jobs and a good bit of spare time. I didn't have to find anything to pay the bills.  I did a lot of business travel so I took my metal detector and got to detect a lot of different locations.

I took a few months off between jobs once when I proved to myself that I could make a living out of detecting beaches and shallow water.  I wanted to find out if I could.  That was decades ago.

To repeat my main point - you can't just buy a detector and go out and leisurely make a living out of it.  Don't bet the bank on it without first giving it a try and really finding out what it will take to be successful.  For me now, it is a very enjoyable educational activity that provides a multitude of benefits.  It is a good way to connect with the past and learn a little more about yourself.


We have a small surf and small tides on the Treasure Coast now.  If you are a shallow water hunter, it is probably a good time.

The surf is supposed to increase next week.

Happy hunting,