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: Large Pocket Spill included 4 silver quarters, 2 silver dimes, a Buffalo Nickel, and only a single wheat!
SITE: Backyard of a home in an older neighborhood
SITE EVALUATION: 8 of 10. This yard had tons of old trash and iron in it, and low hanging power lines that wreaked havoc on both my detectors on any channel/frequency. It was tough to hunt. I should still give it a nine or ten, because that was probably the reason there was so much stuff still here.
PERMISSION: Super cool property owner that was totally happy with me digging a lot more holes than I was comfortable with due to the large number of finds and trash and iron I had to remove to get them.
Hunt the Difficult Sites: This was one of those nightmare sites. Way too trashy, too much iron, and too much electrical interference. I love these sites because though I have to work extremely hard, I know the good are there. Do the work to get in the trash and get the great stuff out.
Don’t Leave a Spill Until You Are Sure You Have the Whole Thing: I dug the Buffalo, the Wheat, and the Mercury – all at about six inches – and then guess what I did? I actually left the spot. Yeah I know right. I should know better. I came back about an hour later and thought “Hmmm wonder if there is any more there?” Got a deep iffy signal that didn’t exactly scream “silver quarter”. Dug not one, but all four quarters at about 11 or 12 inches. Deep. Two were stuck together but, perhaps due to the proximity to some deep iron? they sounded like nails at first until I got them to “speak” to me after isolating the targets. I used my pinpointer and dug a little deeper to try and make sure I got it all, but to tell the truth, I think I got it all but can’t say for 100% certain even now.
Dig Any Signal Rule: My dig any signal rule is pretty simple. Any time you dig a great find, clear the ground around this. The distance I clear out varies based on the amount of iron and trash, but I’ve dug countless “bonus” finds by digging everything in proximity to the great find. Sometimes one of the “deep nails” turns out to be something completely great altogether. Sometimes clearing certain junk or iron un-masks another great find. It makes sense that great stuff is often lost or dropped in groups and not just as single items. It’s not crazy if it works, right?
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