100 FINDS IN 100 DAYS: #64 Hotchkiss Fuse

100 FINDS IN 100 DAYS: #64 Hotchkiss Fuse

Note:   In this series, we have selected 100 metal detecting finds that were extremely difficult to detect and recover, and provide details on the circumstances and techniques that contributed to their successful recovery.

KEEPER:  This was my first Civil War artillery fuse.  I love that rich, green color!

SITE:  House that was about to be torn down

SITE EVALUATION: 8 of 10 Plenty of bullets, relics and old coins here.  .

PERMISSION:  Developer with assistance of another detectorist, who was gracious enough to share his permission.

KEY PRINCIPLES:

Big Coil:  Once we had hunted this site hard, I loaned my big 17 inch coil for my Fisher F75 to a friend and told him to put it on and go after the deeper stuff in this yard.  He held onto it for two weeks and didn’t use it.     I asked for it back and he and I went to hunt this yard together.     Twenty minutes in, I dig this fuse from over 2 feet deep.     That night, he ordered the same coil for his detector!

Close to House:  I like to stay away from getting right up against people’s houses if I don’t know them well, as a courtesy and to not creek them out.  A construction site doesn’t have this restriction, so I was able to get much closer to the house than I usually was.

Deep but Solid:  I’ve dug several deep large brass Civil War relics such as fuses and belt plates.  They all have one thing in common – though they were all very deep, they sound clear – so clear I expected a much shallower coin.   When you are on a battlefield and get a super clear, shallow banging coin signal, but you realize it is much deeper than you though as you dig, it is probably time to start getting excited!

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