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The Mysteries of Masking and the Mighty Compadre

26 Jun

I went out for an hour yesterday, after dealing with a sick child. Once he was feeling better and was watching t.v. I excused myself for a bit of gold hunting.

I returned to one of three spots that I am methodically clearing of all mid-tones. At one point, I got what I believed to be a deep target signal. It was a consistent high chirp from all directions. I cut a deep plug and stuck the pinpointer in the hole but got no signal. When I laid the pinpointer down to deepen the hole, the pinpointer sat about 12 inches away from the hole and it went off big. I thought I would remove whatever was making the pinpointer go off before I continued looking for my deep target. The target that was setting the pinpointer off was a large mass of iron just a couple of inches below the surface.

So before I returned to digging the deep target out, I stood up and re-swiped the hole just to be sure I wasn’t off on my pinpointing.  There was no signal in the hole anymore so I scanned the plug and bang! a solid, no-doubt-about-it pull tab signal came loudly through the backphones. What!?

Curious, I put the plug back in the hole and scanned it from the top. Sure enough, the loud pull tab signal was there. Why didn’t I get this loud signal before? I dug the pull tab out with the Lesche and it turned out to be just 3 inches deep. I swear that I scanned this signal from all sides! And before I removed the large iron object  the pull tab sounded faint and high like the kind of signal that I dig all the time and that usually produces a deep target.

After thinking about it, I decided that the large iron target, TWELVE inches away, was masking this pull tab. I was using my 11 inch coil, which has a large footprint. An obvious solution to this is to use a sniper coil, thus minimizing the effects of the masking in this case. So yes, a smaller coil would have dealt with this problem but it wouldn’t eliminate THE problem, which is masking.

Now consider this on a smaller scale. Say, an aluminum can is sitting 6 inches away from a desirable target, Would I hear the good target? What if the large masking target was sitting 4 inches away? What if you don’t use a sniper coil all the time? Masking is a real problem and I fear an all too frequent one. And the point I am really trying to make here is that the masking target NEED NOT be on TOP of the good target to effectively mask it. Here are the metal chunk and the pull tab in question:

masking

 

The rusted iron is about 2 inches thick.

So, today, for my lunch hour hunt, I left Maurice at home and brought instead the Mighty Compadre. With its 5 inch coil, is perfect for hunting gold in a trashy park. As if to assert his mightiness, the second target in my lunch hour hunt with the Compadre was this:

old-ring

The ring was about 5 inches deep and gave a nice and clear beep. I was discriminating anything below nickel. The ring is obviously silver although no maker’s mark is present. It is well worn and the style says vintage. The picture doesn’t do it justice. Once I got to my office and cleaned it well, I could tell there was absolutely no corrosion. The silver looks old and the stone looks to be a garnet. I will test it with the acid once I get home but I am confident this is very old silver.

After a 1977 nickel and a few more pull tabs I decided to go get some food.

I’ve decided to continue my gold hunting with the Compadre. I know it won’t let me down.

Thank you for stopping by!

 

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2 Responses to “The Mysteries of Masking and the Mighty Compadre”

  1. lawdog1 June 27, 2014 at 7:48 am #

    That’s a nice miniature axe head! The ring looks old. I like it.

  2. pulltabMiner June 27, 2014 at 1:31 pm #

    Yeah, the ring is vintage alright. It has quite a bit of wear on it. I am still looking for the gold ring though

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