Oh! How The Mighty Have Fallen!

20 Oct

Last year, while I was chasing the 100-silver-coin mark, I found over a dozen Buffalo nickels. In spite of the Buffalo being one of the coolest coins ever minted in the world, I grew disdainful towards it. I mean, I needed silver coins to make it into the 100-silver-coin-a-year club not Buffalo nickels! So towards the middle of the year, I stopped being thankful for the beautiful coins and instead would mutter something about the stupid nickels so on and so forth.

Well, look at me now! With only a handful of hunts for the year I have found near zero cool coins this year. I did find my oldest coin ever earlier in the year. That 1867 Shield nickel with rays is going to be hard to beat but all in all, I am doing very poorly in the finds department.

So the other day I managed to put in two hours swinging my XP Deus metal detector. Oh what a glorious morning it was! Perfect in every way. Five minutes into the hunt I managed to pull a 1936 Buffalo nickel out of the ground

What a beaut! I could even make the year clearly, which as you know, with this coin, that’s a feat in and of itself.

There were no words of disrespect muttered this time. I sat there in the gentle morning sun, surrounded by pine and cypress trees, admiring the solemn and imposing profile of the Native American on the obverse of the coin. (according to James Fraser, the designer of the coin, the portrait on the coin is a composite of several natives he had painted prior to designing the coin). Turning the coin over, I could clearly see the noble beast (an American Bison, not a buffalo; buffaloes live in Asia and Africa). Fraser said he wanted to design a coin that was uniquely American and boy did he succeed. I bemoan, along with thousands others, the fact that our modern coinage doesn’t come near to the beauty of coins such as this.

No silver was to be had on this hunt. In addition to the buff, I scored a couple of wheats, one a 1929 and an assortment of odds and ends. So let the reader learn from my mistake. Do not get cocky and over-confident. Enjoy that wheat for it is history made copper. You never know when the next one may come.

While many hunters in my area excel at acquiring permission to hunt private property, I, suffering as I do with antisocial behavior, am stuck hunting parks. Parks are a hard hunt anymore. I believe that many a coin lie undisturbed under our parks but they are deep and highly masked. Maurice –my Deus metal detector, excels at unmasking but it won’t get me a dime at 14 inches or deeper. In fact, the deepest coin I’ve dug with Maurice was between 10 and 11 inches deep. So what am I to do? Earlier in the year, I wanted to buy one of them newfangled Garrets, you know, the collapsible P.I. one but a hunter out in California told me that he was using one and that he wasn’t getting anymore depth with his than with the Deus at city parks. Later I heard about the AKA Signum (Russian). In one video, these Russian guys were hitting a quarter at 4 feet on an air test and a guy out in Germany swears by it depth wise (he found a quarter size coin at 10 inches). Lately, I’ve been looking at the Blisstool v5, “the beast” (Bulgarian). On a video, some Bulgarian dude (possibly the designer of the thing), shows how he can detect a gold coin under a 2 ft thick, highly mineralized rock. Both the Russian and Bulgarian detectors cost around the same. Were I surer about the depth claims, I would find a way to get one of those right away but I am not so sure. The problem is that my concept of deep and other people’s concept of deep are very different. 8 inches is not deep to me. Heck, 10 inches is not deep to me. When I say deep, I mean 12 inches or more. The only video I’ve seen of a real hunt where those depths were achieved was a video of a guy hunting with a Minelab GPX5000, which runs about $5000 american. I don’t have that kind of cash. But I could conceivably get $1300 together for a Signum or a Blisstool. I can already dig a 2 feet deep hole in seconds so all I need is the machine to get me there.

Thank you for stopping by!


One Response to “Oh! How The Mighty Have Fallen!”

  1. lawdog1 October 20, 2014 at 7:31 pm #

    You get it! Congratulations on your meager nickel and lowly pennies. I often am thankful of digs most would consider junk. Been missing you lately.

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