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Old 09-03-2008, 07:30 AM
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Tinfoilhat Tinfoilhat is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: East TN
Posts: 759
Default A note of inspiration for new folks - Long and boring

We have a lot of new people on the boards. Heck, I have only been seriously swinging since June and I already feel like a vet around here. I had an interesting weekend detecting I learned a very valuable lesson and wanted to share it with our newest members.

Our hobby has a very high turnover rate. In my opinion, most attrition is caused by people getting discouraged when they fail to find anything during a couple of outings.

I don't know how many hours I've detected but it's a lot considering my length of experience. In addition, I have a couple of things working against me. I am in a small town, that while old, has always been small. My wife and I recently moved here, so I havent had enough time here to develop a sound understanding of town history. Still, I am learning.

Saturday I headed out with TNHunter. He obtained permission for us to hunt a farm where CW relics have been found, including a plate. We know that there was civil war activity in the area. We even had the find are pinned down to a 1/4 acre of pasture.

We spent 6 hours detecting non-stop. We hunted hard. In the end, my take for the day was a potentially old fired mini ball and a 2005 memorial cent !

I got home and decided to head back out. I have a partner in the contest and he is is responsible for the majority of our score. I know I don't have the experience that he does. Still, I have been pouring my heart and soul in to my hunts to support the team in whatever capacity I may.

I went to the lot down the street from my house. I have found a number of wheat cents and also my first liberty dime (1942). While pickings are slim, just a few older coins here can help with our score.

Four hours later, I had a few clad and nothing else exciting. I went home pretty dejected. Ten hours of hard hunting, digging every signal and I had little to show for it.

I woke up Monday morning really sore. Explained to my wife that I needed to head out again as I had to put some points on the board or die trying. I decided that I had beat down many of my regular sites and needed to try some new locations. I perused the net and my notes and saw a couple of old schools that I had never gotten a chance to check out. Popped a few aspirin and headed out.

I hit three locations. The first two were very clean. It was clear that someone regularly worked the area. Heck, I wasn't even finding can slaw which told me that the person or persons detecting were very thorough. I did have to silently tip my hat to them. Any time a site is this thoroughly worked, I smile. You learn a lot going over previously detected spots. You get an excellent feel for the level of experience of those that have detected before you. You recognize the good detectorists.

The third location was the same. Nary a quality target. I had a box full of trash but my pull tab count was 4 times higher than my clad count.

I was done. I walked back to the truck beat up and filthy. As I sat in the car scratching my mosquito bites and enjoying the air conditioning, I spied a small set of bleachers not 20 feet from the car. I just wanted to go home and get a shower. I remember thinking that a serious detectorist would drag those bleachers over a bit and have at it. Still, the thought of crushing three vertebre to find a few more pulltabs did not sound like fun.

Grumbling under my breath, I dragged my sorry carcass out of the truck and grabbed my detector. I meandered over to the bleachers. Just as I had suspected, someone had already moved the bleachers. I could clearly see the drag marks in the grass. I started to head back to the truck and then decided to move it anyway.

So I huffed a puffed away, bent over, dragging each side of the bleachers six inches or so at a time. Even though I was out in the field, I was embarassed by the fact that my shorts were slipping and I was sunning waaay too much butt crack. And we all know that crack kills !

I fired up the detecter yet again. Swing, swing, beep, pull tab. Swing, swing, beep, can slaw. Swing, swing, beep, WTH ? I got an 89 VDI reading. Silver. Now an 89 doesn't ever show on my VDI. If you spend enough time with your detector, you become very familiar with common readings.

I swung at 90 degrees assuming that someone had buried a large VW in the field. 89 again. Interestingly, the signal was coming from the exact spot where one of the bleacher skids rested.

I dug a plug, peeled it back and looked in disbelief at a ring staring up at me. I just sat there dumbfounded. I picked up the ring to get a better look. It was a man's ring and large. It said DAD. I cleaned the dirt off and saw that it was stamped inside 925 and India ! Finally, some redemption !

Now we all know that the ring has no real material value. Still, you'd have thought I just found a cache of double eagles. Oh yeah, I did the dance.

A little Fred Astaire followed by a Gene Kelly Singing in the Rain move off the bleachers. I then had to bust a move on some MC Hammer, and close with a little Icky Shuffle. There where far too many ant piles or I would have surely closed with a little Rock Lobster roll on the ground.

I told this stupid story about a mediocre find as I learned a very valuable lesson. Everyone has lulls. The successful folks on our forum work through those lulls. They change locations grind through it. That's what separates those that find from those who don't.

I hope this helps someone. Hang with it. Your next find is just a swing away. Or 5 swings, or maybe 500. Still, your treasure is there. Quietly buried and waiting for you to shine a little light on it.

Here's the only pic I have right now. Camera died.

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Last edited by Tinfoilhat; 09-04-2008 at 04:22 PM. Reason: Added pic
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