Tag Archives: custom jewelry

Where the Buffalo Roam

11 Jan

And the Girl Scouts dropped their bling.

I stopped at my usual after-work spot to give Maurice a quick workout. After digging a number of deep pulltabs and can slaw, my Deus metal detector gave me a wheat/indian head signal. I dug a 5 inch deep hole and I pulled something that made me see dollar signs:


The bracelet is bling but it sure looked like gold when I pulled it out of the hole! Still, I usually find Girl Scout Brownie pins around the site. This is the first piece of GS paraphernalia that is different. It is in very good shape except for the bent band. I need to learn how to fix this kind of damage. Maybe I will invest on a jewelry repair kit this year.

After a little while I got a nickel signal. I dug the hole expecting yet another piece of can but I what I got instead was this beatiful Buffalo nickel in near pristine condition. This nickel was dropped in 1937!



This is my first Buff of the year and about the 5th or 6th from this spot. And I didn’t scratch it! (did I mention that I love my shovel?).

Alas, my 30 minutes went so quickly! It was soon time to continue on home. Before I left though, I paused for a moment to enjoy the dying day. It occurred to me that if I went to bar after work like so many people, I would have missed this breathtaking sky painting.


I capped this perfect evening with a 1/2 p0und hot dog at a neighborhood restaurant with my boys and the rest of the family.

Thank you for looking!


When the bullet hits the bone

26 Aug

I went metal detecting this morning with my XP Deus metal detector.

I hit an old park for two hours and after countless pieces of foil, I decided to change venues. I returned to my old tried-and-true spot at the old trashy park.

Right away I hit a transportation token. Just when I think I’ve gotten the last one from there, I find another one! I am not complaining though, I love them.

old Wichita trolley token

They read as foil on my detector

Then I found a bullet. I find bullets all the time but this one is a little creepy. Look at the blunt end where the bullet hit something. It sure looks like the pattern shattered bone makes! Maybe I am just seeing things.

fired bullet

Sure looks like this one hit something

The next thing I found, besides the countless pull tabs and foil, was a shot shell. I don’t get excited about shot shells anymore but this one is in such good shape! According to Cartridge Corner (see links on the right), this Winchester shot shell was made from 1884 to 1894. Niiiice.

shot gun shell bottom

Like it was dropped yesterday!

Last, I found a locket. I don’t know how old it may be but it opens. I will clean it later and try to open it to see what’s in it.

Old heart-shaped locket

What’s inside?

I am happy I got to hunt for a few hours. We finally got some decent rain and the ground is a joy to dig.

Thank you for looking!

Egypt in the Midwest

8 Aug

I finally got to metal detect again with my XP Deus metal detector. At lunch time today, I stopped at an empty lot near downtown Wichita. I have driven by this lot for a long time and finally decided to stop and see what I could find. Right away I found a 1946 wheat cent. Promising!

Then I found some clad and on my way to the car I got a copper cent signal using the Deus Fast program. I use the Deus Fast because I mostly hunt very trashy places. Anyway, I didn’t find another wheat but I found a cool copper belt. I’ll have to go back to see if the rest of it is somewhere in the lot.

various metal objects

Egypt in a belt

I think this belt was bought somewhere around Cairo back in the 40’s or 50’s. I can just see the vendor selling trinkets to the tourists. There are no markings anywhere on the belt so either this was made in some little shop in Egypt or the part with the markings is still somewhere in the empty lot.

small copper plate with Egyptian pyramids and Sphinx

Surely made for the tourists!

Thank you for looking!


The Deus rocks and that’s no bull

15 Jul

I got to go metal detecting this afternoon with the XP Deus metal detector.

I hit several places with no luck until I decided to revisit a place I had not been able to detect due to Electromagnetic Interferece (EMI) from a large power plant nearby. The Deus was only a little chatty but the noise in no way interfered with the signals.

I was using the Deus Fast program due to the large amounts of old house debris at the site. I detected under a tree and right away I got a nice signal with a VDI in the mid 80’s. About three inches down I got this really cool pendant:

Bull Durham tobacco logo pendant

Bull Durham

If you look really carefully, you can see the words Bull Durham on the pendant. The bull looked old timey so I looked it up on the Web. The bull is the logo of the Bull Durham Tobacco company. The logo was common around the 1920’s.

Bull Durham tobacco ad

The bull logo is a dead match for the pendant

The back of the pendant says 14K gold plated but most of the gold is gone from the pendant.

I continued hunting around the same tree and I got another signal in the mid 80’s. This time only about two inches down I found my very first Trade Token ever!

Trade token obverse

Good for 5 cents in trade

Trade token reverse


I think this is really cool but there is no identifying information on the token other than the number 16259 on the reverse. Hmmmmm…

I found pictures of similar tokens with the same ornamental elements from the early 1900’s mostly from Wichita tobacco stores and bowling alley’s.

Last, before I left, I got another signal around that tree and it was a nice quarter signal. With visions of Barber quarters dancing in my head, I happily dug a six inch deep hole and I found this brooch at the bottom:

Ornate brooch

I was tired and it was time to go home but you can bet I am returning to grid the area. This area is the site of a very old neighborhood that was razed in the mid 1970’s and it is now part of a park.

Thank you for looking!

First Real World Hunt with the XP Deus.

7 Jul

I took my XP Deus metal detector for a real world hunt this morning.

I met Patton, Redd, KansasDave, and gsmith; all from the Friendly Metal Detecting Forum at a productive site and we went to work. Right away, I began finding wheat cents (found a total of 16 for the day). The XP Deus gave me nice solid signals. At this site, nothing is deeper than six inches so all the signals I got from the Deus were nice and solid.

There is a lot for me to learn. I began with a factory installed program called Basic 1. Basic 1 runs at 12Khz and so it’s good for general metal detecting. The program comes with a low discrimination setting, meaning it was set to hunt foil on up. I changed the discrimination to hunt for silver and clad. Like many other detectors, the Deus loses depth as you increase the discrimination. Since most targets at the site were relatively shallow, this didn’t cause a problem.

At some point I opened the Deus back up and that’s how I found a fake gold ring and an old interesting brooch.

various metal objects

Deus loot

The Deus is a joy to swing. As KansasDave put it: “it’s like swinging a broom stick”. It is even more of a joy to transport around since you just simply collapse it into a very short machine.

The backphones are very well designed. Once you put them over your ears you quickly forget about them.

Once you hunt without wires and with a light powerful detector, you will settle for nothing less.

The stock nine inch coil is so accurate, I hardly used the pinpoint feature at all.

It was a successful first hunt as I even managed to find a silver coin.

I think I made the right decision.

Thank you for looking!

Silver coin number 12

19 May

I met fellow forum member lawdog1 this morning for a hunt in my silver park. Lawdog1 had asked me to let him know when I got a signal worth digging so he could check it with his AT Pro. I was hunting with my AT Pro as well. Eventually, I got a signal typical of this park. It was a mixed signal with mid tones and high tones. What got my attention was the quality of the high tones and the fact that the high tones repeated from multiple angles.  After lawdog1 checked the signal we dug it up and this is what came up:

1954 U.S. dime with dirt on it


1954 U.S. dime obverse


The dime was only five inches deep or so and there is no telling why the signal was the way it was. Right before I found this dime, I had gotten a signal that bounced from 51 through 53 and back. I dug up a 1936 Buffalo nickel in great shape except for the gash I put on it. Sigh! The nickel was only about four inches deep.

1936 Buffalo nickel reverse

Fresh from the dirt

1936 Buffalo nickel obverse

In such great shape and I ruined it!

Last, as I was digging up pull tab and foil signals, I came across a bouncy signal on the high forties. No particular thing about this signal made me dig it other than it was in the high forties and repeatable. When I first saw the pendant, I thought it may be just brass or something like that. Once I cleaned it though, I think it may be gold plated.

Shell pendant

Gold plated?

The shell was about five inches deep.

All in all not a bad hunt. When I left, lawdog1 was still hunting. I wonder how he did.

Thank you for looking!

Jewelry on the AT Pro

18 May

I found this ring at lunch time today.

old custom ring

Ring clump!

old custom ring

Ring #5 in two weeks

I hunted with the AT Pro and the 8.5×11 DD coil. I hunt with the Pro wide open, Pro/Zero mode and sensitivity at one bar below max. I keep my ground balance at 76 always to maximize the depth of the Pro on silver items.

What I really want to post about however, is the sound quality of this ring. While the VDI on the Pro said 62, the sound was subtly different than the signals I’d been getting. I will attempt to describe the sound this ring and all the other ones, with the exception of the 10K gold class ring, gave on the Pro.

The Sound was round
The beginning of the signal rose gradually and in a continuous way. The end of the signal fell gradually and continuously as well. This gave the signal a soft quality.

The sound was hollow.
If you expel air from your mouth while puffing up your cheeks and making a sound like a very soft B, then you’ll come close to what I am talking about.

By contrast, the sound pull tabs and foil make is more like striking a solid piece of wood. The sound has a quick and sharp beginning and end. There is no hollow quality to the signal.

That’s the best I can do to try to describe the sounds I am starting to learn. I am still purposely digging as many pull tabs and foil as I can to further educate my ear.

By the way, the 10K gold class ring had a dirty sound to it. It was scratchy and it was mid-tones and high-tones mixed in. I think this was due to two things:

A) The ring had some kind of metal weld material stuck to it where the stone may have been
B) The area I found it at has A LOT of tiny pieces of iron mixed in with the soil.

Also, once the rings and pendants are out of the dirt, the sound difference between them and the pull tabs disappears. Crazy, I know.

I will continue to document this process of discovery so stay tuned!

Thank you for looking.



Gold Ring!!

13 May

A week’s worth of hunts with the AT Pro…

Thank you for looking!

Cool old ring

7 May

After work, I stopped by my old honey hole where I found my first ever Mercury dime. I had my AT Pro and the 5x8DD coil with me. The site is MEGA trashy so the small coil is perfect. Within ten minutes of getting there I got a signal in the low 60’s with that soft, round quality to it. The Pro said the target was eight inches deep. I began to dig and at about six inches this ring popped out.

I couldn’t tell it was a ring at first until I removed some of the dirt. Just as I was admiring it, another hunter stopped by to introduce himself. He hunts Riverside as I do and we exchanged a few war stories. He left to detect after chatting for a few minutes and I resumed my hunt. Before I had to leave, I found a 1942D wheat cent that I missed all the other times I’ve hunted the small area.

old ring

Fresh from the dirt

The ring is gold plated and the stone appears to be mother of pearl. I am no jewelry designer but the design of the ring seems Gothic to me. I would venture to say this ring is from the 1920’s. There are remnants of what may have been markings on the inside of the ring but are too far gone to read.

Finding this ring breathes life into me. I have not been finding much lately and I was beginning to get discouraged. The fact that I found it at the honey hole where I found my first ever Mercury dime and my first ever Walking Liberty half makes it even more special.

old ring and 1942 wheat cent

My after work hunt

I love my AT Pro!

Thank you for looking.

My First Good Luck Token (or Hold Me Closer Tiny Dancer)

6 May

I haven’t had much luck lately on my hunts. Granted, I’ve cut back on my detecting quite a bit, but still, what does a man have to do around here to get some silver?!

So Saturday morning I met Steveouke and Silversmith45 from the Friendly Metal Detecting Forum at a grade school that was built in 1917. We found nothing so we moved on to some empty lots around the school. I hunted with my AT Pro with the 5x8DD coil. Aside from a bunch of clad, I found this Steffen’s Ice Cream Co. Good Luck Token.

Steffen's Dairy token

Came up between a quarter and a half dollar on the Pro.


No swastika on this good luck token

The token was a little over six inches deep.

The Steffen Ice Cream Company was founded in Wichita in 1899 but was then known as the Citizen’s Ice Company. In 1903 the company changed its name to become the Steffen-Bretch Ice and Ice Cream Company. The founder of the business, Nicholas Steffen, was killed by a train while him and another man attempted to cross a railroad crossing on June 8, 1910.

I haven’t been able to date the token. I’ve found a couple of examples here and there but the best I can do for now is to tell you that at some point, the Steffen’s Ice Cream co. stopped making ice cream and this token obviously dates to before that date. Because a swastika was not used on the design of the token, I suspect this token was made after WWII, since by then, Hitler and his goons had given the swastika a negative connotation (prior to that, the swastika was a good luck symbol as well as a symbol for a sun wheel).

But I could be wrong.

Later on Saturday, while running an errand, I stopped by another elementary school and hunted for a little while. This school opened in the mid fifties and it is schedule to shut down this year. I found some clad there as well as a tiny ballerina pendant that read as foil on my AT Pro (VDI of 40). The reason why I dug this signal is that it was noticeably different than any other foil signal I’ve ever heard on the Pro. This one was silky and ’round’. I believe this is what someone else was talking about when they said that gold signals were softer than pull tab signals and foil signals on the AT Pro. I hope to run into this kind of signal again and hopefully there will be gold at the bottom of the hole!

small pendant in shape of ballerina

Tiny dancer 4 inches down.

Thank you for looking!