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Thursday, June 14, 2018

Always something to find

I am not a big fan of negativity in metal detecting which is why I always head out for a search believing anything is possible and I will probably find something.
In my opinion there is always something to find at any beach if you put your time in and look beyond the conditions you see. 
I chuckle reading beach blogs and detecting forum reports about poor beach hunting conditions and lack of finds, I imagine someone walking the same stretch of beach waiting for something to happen week after week. 
The best way to deal with any finds drought is to mix things up starting with a change of scenery. 
Searching in a straight line along the lower beach at the same beach everyday because you found something there a couple of years ago is not a good beach hunting strategy. 
Avoid getting in any type of beach hunting comfort zone because the more you mix things up the more you will find. 
Just trying new things is a step in the right direction, even if you do not find anything you will have tried something different and probably learned something new.
I recover jewelry, coins and artifacts in some of the weirdest places and often when I least expect to. 
One reason why I detect and recover good stuff on a regular basis is because I search a wide variety of areas and I do not assume anything other than there is always something to find somewhere.
I was recently at a metal detecting event held on a beach in Canada and saw something I love seeing in the hobby, enthusiast beginners.
Not one of those beginners asked me when or where should I go beach hunting.
No doubt the majority of those newbies are going to go beach hunting whenever and wherever, more than likely having beginners luck I hope.
Beginners are my favorite type of beach hunters, unpredictable and not set in any ways.
At a heavily hunted beach I dare say they are more competition than experienced beach hunters more likely to search a certain way all the time.
I don’t say this as a shot against experienced beach hunters, just an observation.
When you don’t know what another beach hunter is going to do, they are probably doing something right.

Monday, June 11, 2018

Pin-pointer advice for beach and shallow water hunters

I like to carry a waterproof pin-pointer when I go beach and shallow water hunting, especially when I know I am going to be searching rocky shorelines.
Most waterproof pin-pointers are only depth rated to ten feet, usually ruling out using them in deeper water searches.
I have used several different waterproof pin-pointers and the one I have been using for over a year now is the Minelab ProFind 35.
I am very impressed with the way it is detects small targets and the way it works in saltwater, something many so called waterproof pin-pointers struggle to do.
The ProFind 35 has also been put to the test in a wide variety of beach and shallow water hunting situations.
Being able to stand up to a little abuse is important to me as I often search harsh environments for metal detecting equipment, including brackish swamps, saltwater mangroves, coral reefs, compacted shell and jagged rock beaches.
My pin-pointer has been has seen serious action and been dropped on rocks, spent a couple of days on an offshore coral reef and run over by a beach cleaning tractor.
Or as I will say if I have to one day send it the Minelab repair center, normal use!
However, I am happy to say that it has taken a licking and it is still ticking
Pin-pointers are not usually associated with beach hunting, but they are a valuable accessory if you search tough terrain where recovering targets is much more difficult that detecting targets.
I have given a shout out to my Minelab banana, but there are other waterproof pin-pointers to choose from.
Read reviews and make sure the waterproof pin-pointer you choose to use can do two things, detect a small ear ring back on the highest sensitivity setting and be used in saltwater without going nuts.
Again do your homework before buying a waterproof pin-pointer as some pin-pointers advertised as waterproof behave erratically around salt the one mineral saltwater beach hunters have to deal with on a regular basis.
Remember, you have to turn the sensitivity down to use a pin-pointer in saltwater, don't worry about losing pinpointing depth after lowering the sensitivity on your pin-pointer.
If you are carrying a pin-pointer to the beach you obviously need one to help locate and recover detected targets trapped between rocks, shell or coral.
All of these type of tough beach recovery areas act as natural coin, jewelry or artifact traps, prohibiting the stuff you are searching from sinking out of metal detection range.
A waterproof pin-pointer helps you to isolate a detected target in touch to search areas, how you extract the target is up to you.

You don’t always have to walk around or past difficult to search areas, put your metal detector and scoop down, use the pin-pointer and a flat head screw driver or pair of needle nose pliers to winkle the good stuff out.

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Old dog, same tricks and new toys

Although I have a lot of beach and water hunting miles on my clock I don't dilly dally when it comes to trying new equipment if I believe it may possibly help me to find more and better treasures at the beach.
In other words if you see me using something on a regular basis you can be sure I like it!
My result came back as 99% pirate 1% scallywag so sometimes I have mixed feelings about advertising how good something is for beach or water hunting when I search heavily hunted beaches.
I figure I will still get my share, but some of the new metal detectors like the Minelab Equinox for example make it easier to get ahead faster.
Me thinks metal detector companies are actually listening and designing metal detectors that beach and water hunters have long been asking for.
The main three things or features I look for in a metal detector as a beach hunter are waterproof, balance and versatility, probably in that order.
I prefer balance over weight as a feature because even a moderately beefy metal detector can be swung for hours on end if it is well balanced. 
The Minelab CTX 3030 is a perfect example, looks can be deceiving as it is a surprising well balanced metal detector. 
I predominantly metal detected inland back in the day so I also know how important the word waterproof is in rainy old England.
Been there and done that with the covering metal detectors in plastic bags thing, ruined my share of Etracs, Explorers and Sovereigns. 
If your at the beach salt may be more of a problem for a non waterproof unit than water, no matter how far you stay away from the waters edge. 
Salt spray and sand cannot be washed off and they begin to do a number on your metal detector.
Versatility used to mean being able to change search coils to me, but now it also means being compact enough to travel on metal detecting trips.
How does a metal detector pack comes into play and it often makes a difference on what metal detector I pack to travel with.
I love my CTX 3030 but Im tired of lugging my big green suitcase all over the place, the only suitcase the upper shaft will fit in diagonally. 
We live in good beach and water hunting times as we have more waterproof, balanced and versatile metal detectors to choose from.
Heck even the non waterproof metal detectors are more compact and well balanced than in years past.
Like anything else in these techy times, you have to change with the times, try new things or get left behind.