Sep 06, 2013, 05:49 PM
Huntington Beach, CA, Summer Finds: Rings, Coins, and everything else
Well, I've been at MD-ing for about 9-weeks now since I got hooked when I first purchased a Harbor Freight 9-Function Detector in June. After using my AT Pro for about 6-weeks now mostly in the sand at Huntington State Beach, I've scored pretty good. The stuff in the picture below only includes the stuff I put in my pocket. I must have tossed two bucks in pennys that were so wasted, some even crumbled in my hand. I found a cell phone that Verizon helped me return to the owner, 12-rings including a diamond ring that I sold on eBay, two Tiffany items that are currently listed on eBay (18k 6mm wide Gold Band & Sterling Silver Open Heart Pendant). My two oldest coins were 1943 Mercury Dime & 1920 Buffalo Nickel.
Anyway, I'm still addicted to this hobby since I posted my first post when I joined TreasureNet a few weeks ago when I found my first Gold & Silver. I've learned a lot about this hobby in a short amount of time.
Last edited by SoCalBeachScanner; Sep 09, 2013 at 08:36 PM.
Sep 06, 2013, 06:32 PM
Nice work Socal. What is your preference during the summer, early mornings or evenings?
Sep 06, 2013, 06:42 PM
as a fellow California hunter, welcome aboard! Are you hunting the wet sand or the dry sand? Where did your old coins come from... the wet or the dry ?
I've hunted Hunnington beach before. The volleyball courts are routinely hammered and picked over, but some other dry-sand zones (the "towel line") don't seem to get as much md'ing pressure. I've gotten coins there that, like you say ... have evidence of being there for a season or more un-tapped. And yeah, any time the coin-counts start going up into the 100 to 200 range, on those warm sandy So. CA beaches, the odds will eventually be there, that a ring shouldn't be too far behind
Metal detecting is my one worldy vice!
Sep 06, 2013, 07:01 PM
I hit the beach early Mornings, very early. The State Beach at Bolsa Chica opens at 6AM, I park just outside in Sunset Beach at 4:30 and walk into the State Beach for about one mile. It is so quiet before the park opens with the waves crashing in the background. Also, all the restrooms are open 24 hours, the high light standards from parking lot put a glow on the sand, so no extra light required.
Thanks for your question. I see that your in Yorba Linda, if you want to meet up some morning, let me know.
Last edited by SoCalBeachScanner; Sep 07, 2013 at 11:39 AM.
Sep 06, 2013, 07:22 PM
Read my first post from several weeks ago. That's where I've been going lately. All eight miles of Huntington State Beaches and Huntington City Beach has been MD thousands of times. So I tried to think out of the box, I stay out of the towel lines & volleyball courts, stay away from the sloping part of the beach by the water, and it's been paying off. I will hit the sloping area this winter after some big winter storms erode the beach ... storms opens up a whole new beach full of older stuff. The everyday MD-er hit the usual areas and only get the most recent finds, which are slim at best after covering tons of sand. You need to find the areas on the beach that are very noisy or hot because most MD-er can't handle the noisy trashy ground and move on, big mistake. A lot of the coins that I am finding are from the 60's, 70's & 80's below the upper surface trash. I have been finding coins, jewerly, and stuff that has been buried for decades. The beach rake they tow behind a tractor will not even pick-up a bottle cap and I've noticed Corona is a big seller out here, even though alcohol is not allowed on State Beaches. Some of the bottle caps are so corroded the rim is gone, the rest of the cap is thick with rust, and they ring out on the detector like tarnished clad quarter.
I tried the surf at low tide at several popular beaches that get big crowds on the weekends. Although I did find a ring in Belmont Shore on the swimming beach in about 18" of water on Bay Shore Ave. My conclusion is, the water in SoCal is just too damn cold most if not all of the year for most people, so finding much in the way of coins or jewerly in the surf is not as easy as the Gulf Coast or Atlantic states where the water is warmer and they have resorts on the water. Very few women venture into the west coast surf, and the surfers that lose stuff is lost well offshore. I just had a surfer tell me the other day, that he just lost his wedding ring while surfing and wanted me to go out and find it, I said, yeah right!! Show me where, I'll swim out there, and get right on it
Last edited by SoCalBeachScanner; Sep 08, 2013 at 11:36 AM.
Sep 08, 2013, 12:38 PM
ok so-cal-beach-scanner, I found your first post and read it. Great pix. Nice rings.
To answer some of your questions about how there can be good zones, that you would *THINK* the other long-time local md'rs would be harvesting (including the people you saw): Here's a few ideas:
a) On southern CA beaches, pulse machines are very popular amongst the most hardcore there. They go super deep (deeper than your at-pro), find the finest daintiest of chains and earing studs, and will cut right through the nastiest of minerals. Hence, "how can you argue with that?" right? But the downside of those machines is, they can't discriminate out nails (especially bent ones).
b) so those pulse users tend to avoid the junky nail-ridden areas, and gravitate to cleaner areas void of nails. Thus yes, if someone with a discriminator goes into junky areas, then yes, you're often in an area the pulse machine users avoid.
c) A lot of hardcore beach hunters simply bristle at hunting the dry sand to begin with. And here's why: if you ever got into some thick wet-sand erosion action, you too would be spoiled to the point, that you too would never return to dry sand hunting again. I detest dry sand hunting (but do it on occasion to kill time). EVEN THOUGH .... just like your experience .... I know places where I can go right now and dig 50 to 100 clad coins if I cared to. But it's much more fun to let mother nature do the work for you, and study the tides/winds/swells to arrive at the eroded spots on the beach. When that happens in the right fashion, you can "kiss aluminum (yes, even the molten blobs) goodbye". Because all the light stuff is taken out to the ocean, leaving the heavy items behind on mother nature's natural sluice box/riffle board.
Kinda hard to get excited about dry sand hunting, if you've ever been in action so thick that you're averaging 100 coins per hour (essentially as fast as you care to dig, multiple beeps per swing). Also when erosion is good and deep, old coins can surface (and it's rare to get old coins in the dry sand).
The downside of that is, granted, those type erosion conditions don't occur that often.
d) yes, some beginner hunters down there are downright sloppy and inexperienced (don't go deep, don't dig whispers, have lousy machines, etc...)
Hence the reason why sometimes there's seemingly un-tapped zones in the dry sand.
Not sure what you're talking about the water temperature and/or people not swimming. I thought So. CA beaches (everything south of Santa Barbara) was famous for having quite tolerable (nearly bath-tub temperatures?) for swimming with no wet-suit. On a good hot summer day on popular beaches there, it's not uncommon to see hundreds of people in the water. And sure, some rings are going to be too far off-shore to get without wading/scuba. But a heck of a lot are in the ebbing-inter-tidal zone (where the next minus tide avails you of those exact regions).
In any case, the fact of warm waters that people actually swim in, bodes another reason for an increased ratio of rings even in the dry-sand on such beaches: People take off their jewelry for "safe-keeping" before they go in for a dip. You know, hide it in their shoe, or hand it to their kid or husband to hold on to while the go frolick. This is a common reason you read about when someone's got a lost-jewelry ad, is they had taken on their jewelry, hid it in their cup or shoe, etc... So I would think that So. CA beaches, even on the dry sand, if the target counts got high enough, that there should eventually be rings in the mix.
Contrast to beaches where I'm at (Monterey Bay), you will turn blue if you try to swim w/no wetsuit at most of them Some of the dumpy "locals" (no tourist) beaches here, I have got 500+ coins before getting a gold ring, even on the wet sand after storms. The touristy beaches are better though, for ring-to-coin ratios.
Metal detecting is my one worldy vice!
Sep 08, 2013, 02:23 PM
Originally Posted by Tom_in_CA
Hi Again Tom ... Great Advise........Although
And you make great points, especially work the shore after a big storm. I will be ready if the storms arrive this year. I wish I was metal detecting in the 80's when Seal Beach & Huntington Beach Pier went down. I remember the beach was totally gone with erosion at that time.
First of all, my expertise is saltwater fishing in SoCal, so I know about water temps. The warmest the water ever gets in SoCal is in October/early November and that is when the warmer species of fish tend to arrive. The water is usually only up to 72 degrees at best in the Fall and that is when I caught my first Marlin 20 years ago off Avalon. The Winter and Spring the water averages between 56-62, and the Summer is 58-67 depending on current direction. So the water temp is the warmest when populous jewelry loosers are not in the beach mode. If you look at most SoCal beaches in the late spring thru summer, most adults are just wading and the water is full of kid because they feel no pain. Even the surfers wear wetsuits all year long.
And yes, since I've been bitten by the MD bug, Pulse Detectors interest me. So I will be checking out the new AT Pulse next month that Garrett has been teasing about. So we'll see. But I have mixed feelings about pulse detectors also. I like the idea about finding stuff deep, but I don't like the ides of digging 10-16 inches for a piece of scrap iron, even in the sand which gets difficult below 8" or so because the sand landslides back into the hole faster then you can dig but the wet sand would tend to hold in place better.
I'm lookin forward to when the weather cools off so I can venture into historical areas in the high desert (Owens Lake area) on and around trails to and from mines to the east of Owens Lake and secret fishing areas from the 30' & 40's on the west side. That's where I think a pulse detector with shine, when I have an actual shovel and not a scoop
Great Talk Tom!! Look forward to picking your brain some more. Bill
One more fun fact about Huntington Beach and lost items. I'm a dog owner and have taken my dog to the two local dog beaches over the years. Huntington's Dog Beach is about 1/2 mile long (right at Huntington Cliffs between Golden West St & Sea Point Dr.). Huntington Dog Beach gets absolutely packed on the weekends with hundreds and hundreds of dogs playing ball with their owners in and out of the water. When I first started to MD, I thought that would be a great place to find lost jewerly because I lost a ring throwing a tennis ball for my dog at a inland park. So I figured, if I lost a ring throwing a ball, a lot more people will also (that is some of my thinking out of the box)
Anyway, about four weeks ago I spent four seperate days scanning the dog beach (10 total hours) in wet and dry sand and only found 20-30 coins per day, dog licenses, dog tag name plates, and keys. I was the only one detecting those days that I could see. I even made sure to hit it when we had a early morning minus tide last month when you can walk way out of the tide zone. The only thing I found in the wet sand was a few totally wasted zinc pennies and I passed on digging large deep items, that I assumed were aluminum cans.
But nothing in the way of jewerly. I haven't given up on the dog beach, I will try again sometime soon because there must be rings there because I lost a ring throwing a ball, and my hands were dry when I lost my ring!!
Maybe it has to do with being right or left handed when throwing, so I need a south paw thrower to find the wedding gold
Last edited by SoCalBeachScanner; Sep 08, 2013 at 04:01 PM.
Sep 11, 2013, 02:02 AM
I too am new to this "Hobby" freaking addicting! So far I have only done inland mostly parks and such, it has been fairly productive, but nothing like the numbers your getting. Another Treasure member and I have met and scoped some promising sites inland more for historical coinage and relic stuff. But I really want to find a ring. My goal is to keep really cool stuff, sell other stuff to better equipment. But obviously it is all in the hunt, equipment at whatever level can be mental rewarding. Yeah I hesitated about the beach because it seemed way to common. Everybody was asking " dude been to the beach yet" I would respond with "no, not yet, everybody is down there md ing. But after you reported about getting real old coinage. It was cool you got the cell phone back to the person too. You now even though, it seems like a Finders- Keepers game, seeing the look on someone's face when they get there stuff back must be awesome. Plus it gives this sport/Hobby good karma too.
Thanks for posting - you just might see a couple of dudes from North OC sweeping down there sometime!
Sep 11, 2013, 10:32 AM
Thank you for your note. The beach is a great place to get good at MD really fast. It does not take long to learn sound vs depth, quarter vs bottlecap (sometimes I get both in the same scoop), pulltab vs nickle (although I scoop both because there is in ring in that same tone range), and dimes have their own special chime. The machine sounds can be tricky, especially at the beach with the high corrosion and tarnish rate of items with the salt air & saltwater. Older clad quarters black with tarnish and gunk can have a slight iron sound and bottlecaps with the rim totally rusted away thick with rust can sound like a very tarnished clad quarter and reads on my AT Pro in the low 80's. I go by the machine sound and only reference the display on the machine on "mostly" foil sounding type items or deeper tones. I was out the last couple of days for about 3.5 hours each day and scored just under 100 coins each day, along with 3 rings of no value, but Hey! I'm finding Rings! Also some earring tassels of no value and the usual toys.
I dug about 10 holes at a local park one time early on when I started, found a few current coins, bent up ss ring, and a Canadian '91 dollar coin, but trash also. I just can't bring myself to dig manicured sod and turf for a few coins and items that a lawnmower has mutilated. It was a lot of work for little reward. But now that I am a bit more proficient at MD-ing, if I go back to MD parks, I will discriminate all but silver out of the detector. Parks are a great place to find old silver.
What kind of equipment are you using?
Last edited by SoCalBeachScanner; Sep 12, 2013 at 03:38 PM.
Sep 12, 2013, 02:39 AM
I am using a Bounty Hunter Lonestar, not knowing anything at all about this hobby and all the nuance things about it. I did some research, but in the end $ was a big driver. So $140 to try a new thing was not bad. I actually like my rig a lot and want to eventually upgrade. My first planned upgrade is a wand like Garrett. Some a bit better than my current BH wand that came with the rig. The BH wand is ok but it's reach is only like an inch, so you have to be right on the target before you get a beep/buzz.
It absolutely amazes me that without fail I find money at parks and such. Lots more work than the beach I would think not having swung there yet. I have done just under $5 bucks in found coins, 8 trips so I am happy. Getting coins out of the ground is like releasing them from the past. I like coming home and checking out the years and kinds of conditions the coins are in.
Sep 13, 2013, 02:54 AM
Sep 14, 2013, 05:33 PM
Hey Casper - I like your Motto - This Quote is pretty cool also
"The charm of fishing and metal detecting is that it is the pursuit of what is elusive but attainable, a perpetual series of occasions for hope"
~John Buchan~ in part
Last edited by SoCalBeachScanner; Sep 14, 2013 at 09:23 PM.
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