Guest Post: Karma Nickel


I wanted to talk about one of my last detecting hunts of 2006. I was at a local park, a park that I’ve hunted many times in the past, and was having some pretty bad luck. This park is pretty trashy but has yielded me a lot of good finds (early wheat cents, indian heads, barber dimes and V nickles).

I decided to focus on the surface coins for a bit, since I figured it must be masking a lot of targets. So I started probing a bunch of clads out. I normally hate digging clads, but felt I was going to get a good target by doing this. After several hours, I had about 5 dollars in clads, which surprised me that I found that many quarters.

I rescanned my area, but no luck. So I decided to leave, but as I always do, I always scan on the way back to my car, just in case. Sure enough, I got this weird signal. It wasn’t the best signal, but it’s a signal I like to hear with my Whites XLT for a deep coin. While pinpointing I noticed that the pinpoint was possibly locking on to two targets. The signal was erratic, my optimism quickly fell. Scanning the target in non-pinpoint was giving me the good signal, but the pinpoint was not.

I said to myself, “the only way to find out if this is junk or not is to dig it out”. So I dug my initial plug. Removing the soil I did not visual see the target. Scanning the target only returned me silence from the hole AND the extracted dirt! What happened? Thinking it may have been a piece of foil in there and my detector’s discrimination was final able to see a “clear” picture, I put the plug back in. Going over the spot again, I got my good signal again!? I was stumped.

At that time a homeless woman walked up to me and starting watching. I wanted to continue with my understanding of this target and hole, but felt awkward with her watching me. So I thought I’d take the offensive and said “Hi, how are you?”. She smiled and walked closer to me and asked if I had any spare change so she could get something to eat. I reached into my pocket and realized I didn’t have any money on me… so I said, “I’m sorry, I don’t”. But then realized, I had a little over five dollars in dirty clad. I asked her if she minded if it was “dirty” and of course she said “no”.

I reached into my collection bag, and pulled out all of the clad I found that day and handed it to her. She was very appreciative and moved on. I thought to myself, “That’s another good reason to dig up the clad targets”.

On that note, I was going to call it a day, but thought I’d swing the coil over that spot one more time. Again, the signal came up as a good possible coin signal. I redug my plug and scraped the soil a few more times, and to my surprise a 1911 V-Nickel! It was hiding in there the whole time all right. It’s funny how the detector had a clear view of that coin, but couldn’t see it. I think there may have been a piece of iron below it or around it that was masking the signal after the plug was removed.

I couldn’t help thinking that a little karma might have played a part here!

Happy Hunting!

Author: Hank D.

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