Keyword
Welcome, Guest
(87 Viewing)  (87) Guest

TOPIC: Beach Experiment Brings New Thoughts & More Treasures

Beach Experiment Brings New Thoughts & More Treasures 5 years 11 months ago #14354

  • Bigscoop
  • Bigscoop's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Senior Treasure Hunter
  • Posts: 102
  • Thank you received: 6
  • Karma: 8
Here's what I've been doing the last few weeks and the results have been an eye opener, not what I expected at all, really.

For the most part all I have been hunting is the same small section of beach from as early as Saturday afternoon through Tuesday evening, the exact times depending on the tides.

Keep in mind that this isn't what I would call a busy section of beach except on Saturday and through Sunday afternoon until about 5-6pm when the weekend crowd starts to return home. So for the most part I have just been hunting the same small section of beach over and over again, day after day. And you know what, “it seems there are always good targets here to be found.” And better yet, those good targets always seem to be in the same general area of the wet sand, the same area that I just keep pounding over and over again. Begs the question, “Why?”

However, come Wednesday and for sure by Thursday, you can't hardly beg a target until that weekend crowd returns.

Each time I hunt this section of beach “I am convinced” that I have thoroughly hunted it and yet each time I return I discover that, perhaps not.

Every time I hunt this section of beach I overlap my swings and I hunt in a tightly controlled grid pattern, or at least I believe this to be the case. Pretty darn amazing. A real eye opener, of sorts, perhaps.

When we consider all of the possible variables there are many, to be sure. Could be I'm not covering the ground as well as I think I am? Could be some masking taking place? Could be the beach is simply getting replenished when I'm not there? Could be the tide change is scattering more targets about the right along with the sand? Could be all of the above and more. But I often wonder if it might not be something else altogether?

Given that the summer sand on my area beaches are usually fairly soft and deep, which allows items to continue to sink, I often wonder if perhaps part of the answer doesn’t rest in that sinking process itself? Each time the tide returns to our beaches the wet sand becomes saturated again, the vibration passing through this wet sand and watery mixture further aiding the sinking process, if only minutely.

The matrix these items are passing through isn't a constant, ground shell, larger fragments, and very sand all tossed into the mix. So, as items continue to sink does this matrix cause these items to continuously change position? i.e., a dime that was on end one day laying flat on the next, possibly even no deeper, or only slightly deeper then it was the day before? Since our wet sand and water is never a constant then it only makes sense that these items would change position as they continue to slowly sink. So, what presented a very small and almost unidentifiable target today could easily present a much larger and very identifiable tomorrow?

Needless to say this one small section of beach has given me a lot to consider.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Beach Experiment Brings New Thoughts & More Treasures 5 years 11 months ago #14355

  • Bill-USA
  • Bill-USA's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Senior Treasure Hunter
  • Posts: 299
  • Thank you received: 9
  • Karma: 5
:) BigScoop, if you remember the old cone shaped paper water cups they used to use when we were kids, I want you to envision a similar cone attached to the bottom of you MD coil. For simplicity sake say the cone is as wide at the top as the coil diameter, and the narrow point at the bottom is down at that same distance. Let the cone represent your detection area.

In this silly example, if you are hitting items at eight inches deep, using an eight inch coil, you're only touching them with the very tip of the cone. If you overlap 50%, you've doubled your coverage, but still missing probably 90% of the stuff at that depth because you're so close to the end of the detection area (good example for a concentric coil).

I'm willing to bet that if you cover a smaller area, grid it and swing from four different directions you will continue to find new good targets for several passes. A simple explanation of the 'detection area under most VLF detectors today. Also the reason you can follow other experienced detectorists and still be hitting good stuff.

Lots of other variables, but hope that helps some of our users understand more about the process. :) Best of luck! Hit the big one!

(Not sure why I thought Tommy had written this. Sorry BigScoop. ) :blush:
Dump a democrat!
Last Edit: 5 years 11 months ago by Bill-USA.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Beach Experiment Brings New Thoughts & More Treasures 5 years 11 months ago #14356

  • Bigscoop
  • Bigscoop's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Senior Treasure Hunter
  • Posts: 102
  • Thank you received: 6
  • Karma: 8
Hey Bill. Thanks for the reply.

I'm using BBS and running fairly hot settings. Believe it or not, most of the targets are fairly shallow, gradually a bit deeper as the week progresses, say to around 10 inches or so, maybe 12. I'm also swinging a 12 x 15 SEF coil which provides me a big footprint.

There is never a lot of targets here, usually just a handful, but there is almost always some good targets to be found. I'm just now starting to hit a fair amount of those dreaded deep pennies and dimes.

I'm sure some of those usual factors come into play but I'm really starting to believe some of these targets do shift over time. I've gridded this area off up and down and sideways and I still keep hitting fairly shallow targets up through about Wednesday every week. After this everything is pretty deep and pretty scarce.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Beach Experiment Brings New Thoughts & More Treasures 5 years 11 months ago #14357

  • Bill-USA
  • Bill-USA's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Senior Treasure Hunter
  • Posts: 299
  • Thank you received: 9
  • Karma: 5
Bigscoop, no doubt, with the MineLab circuitry and that huge elliptical coil, you're got a much more thorough coverage than in my simple example. I was not trying to 'talk down' to you either.

It never ceases to amaze me how many folks run out and buy a detector expecting to be able to find 'only the gold', but have no real concept of the natural sciences that allow the detection process to even work. I was simply trying to explain in layman's terms a basic (very basic) example of what actually happens.

Pretty sure I remember you from the old T-net site, and know you have a good deal more experience than I have acquired in my few years detecting. I hope my simple description at least imparts some small bit of understanding to the newer folks in the hobby.

As I'm sure you are aware, even the small concentric coil has a detection envelope shaped much more like a large toroid or doughnut than just a simple cone. Now, add the BBS and change the coil to an ellipse, and of course you have a much better envelope than the simple cone. I'm not sure I can even describe in words what happens when you use the 'double d' coil, where the two inner edges of the detection envelope overlap each other..... :)


This image is hidden for guests. Please log in or register to see it.



And thanks for discussing your techniques and results for those of us who don't have the luxury of being at a shoreline so much.

Good luck, sir, and keep the info flowing!.
Dump a democrat!
Last Edit: 5 years 11 months ago by Bill-USA.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Beach Experiment Brings New Thoughts & More Treasures 5 years 11 months ago #14358

  • Bigscoop
  • Bigscoop's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Senior Treasure Hunter
  • Posts: 102
  • Thank you received: 6
  • Karma: 8
Last week I took six dimes and using my Drimel tool I ground an "x" in each one of them, then I tossed them over a small area of the wet sand of this section of beach. Three of those dimes were found on my next hunt in the same general area of beach at about 4-6 inches deep, and this in just about 26 hrs time and only two tide changes. Of the remaining three dimes I never have found two of them and the last one was found the following day a bit lower on the beach, in the really soupy stuff, and right at the limit of my detection range. I can only assume that the other two had dragged further or that they had already sunk out of my detection range with just a couple tide changes?

I "suspect" the later to be the case because of the extreme depth of the last dime I did find, about 10 feet above the low tide waterline in that really wet sand. Now dimes are pretty light weight with a fair amount of surface area in relationship to their weight, and yet they sank fairly quickly, actually amazing quick, in that fine wet sand.

So I really think there are a lot more items lost on the beach then we realize and that they sink out of our reach much faster then we might believe depending on the matrix encountered, the amount of water saturation, and the amount of agitation applied to the sand. No way do I believe that the lack of targets is simply due to the competition picking these beaches apart. If those dimes were any indication of just how fast items can sink then consider those denser gold and silver rings with very little surface areas.

Given the conditions of a particular beach, or a particular section of beach, just how much time do we really have to access those weekend losses?
Last Edit: 5 years 11 months ago by Bigscoop.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Beach Experiment Brings New Thoughts & More Treasures 5 years 11 months ago #14359

  • Bigscoop
  • Bigscoop's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Senior Treasure Hunter
  • Posts: 102
  • Thank you received: 6
  • Karma: 8
I was on the beach last night at low tide after the busy Saturday crowd had left. Found several items leftover from the day's activities. True to the theory, those items on the upper wet sand were only a couple of inches deep, these recovery depths then gradually getting deeper as we continue to work towards the water and over a gradually increasing amount of sand and water mix. By the time we reach the waterline most of the items recovered were already "several inches" deep and for the most part their signatures were increasingly smaller as well.

There was only one tide change between my two hunts, that high tide period returning at about 10:30am, peaking at around 5:30pm, lasting through the height of the beach activity, and then slowly diminishing back to a low tide at around 10:50pm. So for twelve hours the water was gradually coming back onto the beach with this saturation lasting the longest period of time on the lower beach and the least amount of time on the upper beach.

So how can we use this information? First, over a period of time targets should remain within our reach for the longest period of time on the upper beach, the least amount of time on the lower beach, this amount of time also depending on the matrix and the amount of agitation, but generally being reduced rather quickly the lower we hunt on the beach. Targets on the upper beach might remain within our reach for several days or even weeks, whereas targets lost on the very lower portions of the beach perhaps only hours, maybe less. The only other factor being the shape and density of the target itself.

This general sink rate table should hold true as long as the beach conditions are remaining constant. All of this is just more information for the beach hunter that he can put to use sometimes.

Say we arrive late at the beach and the tide is expected to start returning to the beach shortly. Perhaps now we need to hunt our selected section of beach in parallel grid, starting on the lower beach first and then working it back and forth, rather then the up and down grid that sees us going from the top of the beach to the lower beach and then back again? Can you afford to let those targets on the lower beach see another full twelve full hours of agitation and water? Probably not. Can you afford to let those targets on the upper beach see a few more hours of lighter agitation and water? Most likely, yes.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Beach Experiment Brings New Thoughts & More Treasures 5 years 11 months ago #14360

  • Bigscoop
  • Bigscoop's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Senior Treasure Hunter
  • Posts: 102
  • Thank you received: 6
  • Karma: 8
Both of these rings were found while parallel hunting, arriving early enough at the beach to follow the last hour of the declining high tide out. Both of these rings were already fairly deep when found, perhaps 8 to 10 inches respectively and both were found on the lower half of the beach, say just below the middle portion of the wet sand. There is a good chance that if I hadn't gotten my coil over them on those particular days then they would have sunk out of range with just one or two more tide changes. Both of these rings are under five grams each so they really aren't very dense rings. What if they were eight or nine grams each, or even ten or more?

This image is hidden for guests. Please log in or register to see it.


When we look at these rings they don't provide very much surface area at all and you can almost envision them slowly squirming their way deeper into the soft soupy sand with the aid of some vibration and agitation. On the other hand, who hasn't pressed their scoop into that drained and dry sand of the upper beach at low tide and thought, “Man, nothing could sink in this concrete!” And you'd be right. But press your scoop into that same sand after it's had water penetrating it for an hour and you'll wonder where that concrete went. In just a couple of hours you'll be able to sink your scoop into this same sand with little effort. Now imagine that lower portion of the beach that's always saturated. So would the two above rings still have been within reach after one or more tide changes? It's very doubtful.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Beach Experiment Brings New Thoughts & More Treasures 5 years 11 months ago #14361

  • seeker41
  • seeker41's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Expert Treasure Hunter
  • Posts: 378
  • Thank you received: 57
  • Karma: 12
excellent thread and great input from you both!!!!! i do agree with your theorys and methods!! i definitly hunt paralell at or very near low tide for the very reasons you mentioned!! getting there before the next tide/agatation is very important!!!
i swear, i think gold rings or any target other than pennies or dimes can be gone in less than one hour!!!!!! blows my mind to hunt a slam packed beach imediatly after the crowd leaves and not find squat, i guess when this happens it might be time to put all your efforts on the upper one third of the beach!!!
bill, thanks for reminding me to slow down and overlap more!
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Beach Experiment Brings New Thoughts & More Treasures 5 years 11 months ago #14362

  • Bigscoop
  • Bigscoop's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Senior Treasure Hunter
  • Posts: 102
  • Thank you received: 6
  • Karma: 8
Chuck,
Honestly, I've been staying away from that really mushy stuff as much as possible. As soon as I feel that mushy sand under my feet I turn around unless I'm hunting during the height of the activity, and even then I usually turn around. The problem here is that you practically have to get at those rings as they're falling off someone's finger which isn't very likely.

Last night I "dabbled" along this mushy waterline for about thirty minutes and after recovering one or two deep pull tabs, a deep bottle cap, a deep but very clean quarter, and a couple deep pieces of can slaw I bailed out and never returned. Like you say, after several hours in that soup the odds are pretty darn good that all but the lightest of rings won't be within my reach anyway.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Beach Experiment Brings New Thoughts & More Treasures 5 years 11 months ago #14363

  • Bigscoop
  • Bigscoop's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Senior Treasure Hunter
  • Posts: 102
  • Thank you received: 6
  • Karma: 8
Same section of beach and I hit two coins spills last night that weren't there twelve hours prior. In both cases the coins from both spills were being slowly dragged toward the water, the depth of those coins gradually increasing as they got closer to the water, this over a distance of about 10 feet.

One of these spills was right on top of that lower beach bar, about twenty feet above the low tide waterline and about 8 or 10 feet away from that final slope into the waterline. The coins on top of the bar were only a few inches deep, maybe 5 or 6, however, the coins that had gotten dragged over the edge of that slope were about twice as deep, the sand being much soupier and mushier on that slope and the agitation/flushing being constant.

And the really bad part right now, even the wet sand at the top of the beach was softer then normal, you could even see those wide ripples of sand up there in most places. So that last positive low tide cycle with all of that east wind behind it has really pushed a lot of sand up onto the beach. Hence all the weeds and jelly fish laying about last week.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Beach Experiment Brings New Thoughts & More Treasures 5 years 11 months ago #14367

  • Bigscoop
  • Bigscoop's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Senior Treasure Hunter
  • Posts: 102
  • Thank you received: 6
  • Karma: 8
Today I spent some time roaming the beach at low tide, detector and large coil in hand. There wasn't any grid hunting for the most part today, just roaming around from the top of the beach to the lower beach. I even slipped into the water a few times to check things out.

It's funny the wet sand maintains a different color at times, sometimes it's just sort of a ghost-gray, this nearly always being very soft sand. Then there are those areas that appear a shade of light brown, this usually being firmer/denser sand. Every notice how when you walk over that ghost-gray sand you usually never see any shell, not even the tiny stuff? What you will see, however is a lot of sand flea holes. When you find this stuff on the lower beach where the water is still flowing in you can even see the sand fleas themselves and their tell-tell bubbles as they swiftly dig their way deep into the sand. Take a big deep scoop of sand here and you're likely to see several of these little critters in the bottom of your scoop. This generally isn't the case with those browner looking areas. In fact, it might take a bit more effort to fill your scoop with sand here, even at, or very close to the waterline.

Now I'm not talking about those darker "fluffy" banks of sand and tiny crushed shell fragments that usually form just above a washout, but rather I'm talking about those larger/wider areas that are often right at the front edge of that big wide berm of sand that's been building up on the lower beach for the last month. Quite often you'll see runnels running along the entire backside of these areas. These were just some of the areas I was looking for today, sections of denser beach that might likely hold some targets I can still access, my hope being that I could find a few of these areas close to the low tide waterline.

I did find only a few areas like that today and just about all of them I did hit targets, even recovered a couple of 1oz. surf fishing weights from the areas today, but sadly no gold. But at least I know that these denser sections of beach are starting to form, something to keep on the radar as we continue into summer and those crowds just keep coming back.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Beach Experiment Brings New Thoughts & More Treasures 5 years 11 months ago #14371

  • Bigscoop
  • Bigscoop's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Senior Treasure Hunter
  • Posts: 102
  • Thank you received: 6
  • Karma: 8
For me, the absolute best time to hunt the wet sand is after those tidal periods when the wet sand has been covered with water a great deal of the afternoon. This brings a lot of the beach/water activity that is otherwise conducted further out back onto the wet sand area. During the summer any ring that is lost beyond that low tide waterline is going to sink out of range swiftly due to the increased agitation of the sand. On the other hand when these rings are lost over the wet sand their sink rate is slowed which gives us more time to access them.

The other factor that comes into play here is that first line of breakers and the increased amount of water that is flowing over the wet sand area. At low tide there is no “fun and/or cooling water” over the wet sand so people have to go beyond the wet sand to at least the breakers to cool down or to enjoy the water. But when the wet sand area is covered with water they don't have to even go as far as that first row of breakers to enjoy either of these things.

What this means to us is that “it's likely” that more items will be lost over the wet sand when it's been covered in water through the height of daily beach activity. There's just not too much incentive for people to become active enough over the wet sand when it's basically been dry all afternoon. For the most part they sit and lay around over the wet sand, maybe lose a pocketful of coins. I'm not going to the beach for coins. I'm going to the beach for gold and silver and maybe even some platinum every now and then and the more activity that takes place over this wet sand the better my odds.

People lay around and sit around their homes for years without losing their jewelry, not very good odds that they're going to lose them laying around and sitting around on the beach either unless they take them off. But toss in some water, some current, and some action?

Of course there is a bit of a tradeoff here, the saturated wet sand when it's wet, which speeds up the sink rate, VS that concrete dry wet sand that can easily support a ring. All I can tell you is that I have always done noticeably better with gold recoveries when the sand is still a bit wet VS when it's been concrete dry all afternoon. In other words I've always done better on late afternoon hunts with an outgoing tide. This not only allows me to access those items quickly but it allows a higher probability that more items will be lost over he wet sand area of the beach during the height of the beach activity.

In my experience, on my local east coast beaches, I always have much better luck when beach conditions keep a good portion of that daily water activity corralled closer to, or over, what will be the exposed wet sand at tide. Once all of this traffic is spread beyond that low tide waterline the odds begin to quickly diminish for the reasons we've already discussed in this thread. Just another little tid-bit I thought I'd pass along for your consideration.

And I really do hope this information might possibly help many of you to find more summer gold on your own beaches.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Beach Experiment Brings New Thoughts & More Treasures 5 years 11 months ago #14381

  • Bigscoop
  • Bigscoop's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Senior Treasure Hunter
  • Posts: 102
  • Thank you received: 6
  • Karma: 8
Yesterday the heat index was suppose to be around 102 with very little breeze so I strapped on the small coil and I decided I would spend my entire hunt in the water. I'd not been in the water for a while and I thought I would take the opportunity to check out the conditions in a few places of interest.

The first area I hunted was a small trough along a very popular section of beach, I came out of that trough with nothing but a steel fishing leader and a couple pieces of light can slaw. Not so much as a coin to be had. And keep in mind that this trough sees a lot of activity and that it seldom gets hunted. Just way to much deep soft sand in the troughs to support anything beyond the lightest of objects.

My second stop was a popular section of the first sandbar, this now being much wider then a month ago and the tide being low enough to allow me to hunt it without too much resistance. The first thing I noticed here was that the sand on top of the bar was so soft it kept trying suck the coil off the end of my detector. It wasn't what I was hoping for at all. After an hour of moving in and around the increasing number of active adult bodies out here I returned to my vehicle with only a dime and a penny as my reward, both of these looking like they had just been minted.

My third stop was at a “developing” run that I came across just below a few popular condos. This is a condition that will take place sometimes this time of year as the positive low tides start to fade out in favor of those negative low tides. Really it's just equates to the supply of a lot of soft sand to an area of beach during the positive low tide cycle and then the gradual sweeping it away again as the negative low tides return. This is one of those areas that you'll often encounter that appears as if it's pocketed with a lot of holes, which it is, the rush of current flowing here reshaping things as it continues to sweep all that soft sand away. Problem is, the entire area is nothing but deep soft sand that's several feet deep. But then again people just love to use these areas to lounge about so I thought I'd give it a quick but decent attempt with the hope of getting lucky. No such luck, if anything had been lost in this soupy little paradise then it quickly became the property of Davy Jones.

My last stop was a wide saddle that had formed across the first trough, this saddle being behind a popular tourist & time share resort. I had my eye on this place for the last week or so and I decided to give this saddle a good going over because it had been seeing a lot of use in recent weeks. A few minutes into my hunt I retrieved a “deep” iphone and a “deep” pair of cheap sunglasses, then a short time later another “deep” pair of cheap sunglasses, I also got a “deep” bottle cap and a “deep” quarter along with a few other “deep” coins. The digging was easy and none of this stuff appearing as if they had been buried in the salty sand too long at all. Not good signs at all, the bar still being soft and everything being so deep and new looking, especially those “deep” cheap sunglasses that looked as though they just fell off the Wal-mart retail display.

So, no firmer bottom to be found out there yet, the bars and saddles still developing and the troughs still filling up with layers of soft sand. Last night I came home and I put the larger 12 x 15 SEF back on the Excal, the wet sand hunting still being my best option. It's tough out there right now and if we keep getting these steady east breezes and winds and mild surf conditions it's only going to continue to remain that way throughout the summer. Right now we'd better use everything we can that's in our favor and then get to those drops as soon as we can if want any really chance of recovering them.
Last Edit: 5 years 11 months ago by Bigscoop.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Beach Experiment Brings New Thoughts & More Treasures 5 years 11 months ago #14420

  • Bigscoop
  • Bigscoop's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Senior Treasure Hunter
  • Posts: 102
  • Thank you received: 6
  • Karma: 8
Here's some of this year's goodies. Already sent some gold out.

This image is hidden for guests. Please log in or register to see it.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: wreckdiver

Beach Experiment Brings New Thoughts & More Treasures 5 years 11 months ago #14507

  • Bigscoop
  • Bigscoop's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Senior Treasure Hunter
  • Posts: 102
  • Thank you received: 6
  • Karma: 8
Extending the current experiment, after the mild influx of new sand from Hurricane Aurthur, I went to the beach last evening with only two criteria, flat beach on a popular section of beach. I knew before going that a lot of sand had been pushed onto the beach and from a previous hunt I realized that anything heavy/dense was likely to be far too deep to detect. On that previous hunt I wasn't even coming across any iron to speak of.

But I did find were a few coins, flat light objects that had been pushed onto the lower beach with all of that sand. So my hope on this last outing was that I might get lucky and hit on some small gold. Well, that didn't happen but I did find this small collection of sterling silver objects, all of these pieces being light and easy to push around within all that surface sand.

This image is hidden for guests. Please log in or register to see it.


I also came across a few coins, as expected, all of these items being easily moved along the surface and allowed to settle on these flatter sections of popular beach. What I didn't find were any heavy/dense items, these being harder to move and their sink rates being much faster. So what does this tell us? It tells us that there is "a lot" of targets in the sand and that those heavier items are just too deep to be detected. Along with this stuff I also found pull tabs, thin pieces of foil and slaw, a couple of bobby pins, and a bottle cap or two. But not one dense/heavy target. Had Aurthur really been more aggressive the outcome might have been differently.
Last Edit: 5 years 11 months ago by Bigscoop.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Beach Experiment Brings New Thoughts & More Treasures 5 years 1 month ago #15811

  • Orosurf
  • Orosurf's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Treasure Hobbyist
  • Posts: 11
  • Karma: 1
Interesting experiment.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
Moderators: Salvor6, LobsterPirate