1807 DBHC, 1858 FE, Cufflinks, Buttons and Awesome Iron
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Thread: 1807 DBHC, 1858 FE, Cufflinks, Buttons and Awesome Iron

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  1. #1
    us
    Apr 2013
    East Coast - USA
    XP Deus, GPX 4500, Equinox 800, AT Max
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    1807 DBHC, 1858 FE, Cufflinks, Buttons and Awesome Iron

    I got out a couple times last weekend and came home with a whole mess of keeper iron pieces! I've been processing iron all week and everything just came out of the hot wax tonight, so I figured I'd get my post together.

    First the non-ferrous. I found a nice 1807 Half Cent, a toasted Classic Head Large Cent and an 1858 Flying Eagle Cent. A cool set of cufflinks turned up, however the fronts are too toasted to make out the design... just a bit of a border is left on one of them. Three HUGE coat buttons all looked like coppers to me in the dirt... one is a tombac. Then the usual variety of flat buttons, buckles and musket balls turned up. One flat button still has the fabric on it which was my first with fabric and it was really awesome to see when I was cleaning it.

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    And the ferrous. I dig lots of hoe blades, but to get 3 complete ones in one hunt is uncommon... and I actually dug 4 broken ones as well. I have about a dozen hand wrought complete hoe blades in various display cases, but the tiny triangular shaped one was a new one for me. My favorite two pieces of iron are split between the Curry Comb and the complete Spade blade (shovel). I have dug many broken spade blades and even one I broke while extracting, but this was my first complete one. The Curry Comb is also my first and came from a very old spot.

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    I don't dig too many half cents and it took me a minute to even figure out what this was in the field. I have maybe a half dozen half cents total, so it was really nice to get this one with a date even though the back is pretty toasty.

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    This so happens to be my 3rd Flying Eagle! I know these are a bit tough to come by, but for whatever reason I keep finding them, however I never find the fat IHPs. My other two are 1857, so its nice to get a different date on one.

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    All 3 of my flying eagles... the first I dug around 1995 and the second was last year. All have been in fantastic condition too

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    I've seen you guys find buttons with thread or fabric on them still, but it had eluded me. It was really awesome to see blue and white thread when I cleaned this one. It looks like maybe some brown wool was under it. I dug this one and another matching button a foot apart, and only this one had fabric still. Really cool.

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    This Spade blade had me smiling! Its only missing one of the foot pads on one side, but otherwise in well used and worn condition. Incredible to think what sort of holes the were able to dig with these old boxy shovel blades.

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    The Curry Comb was brittle and lost a bit of its bristle pieces, but still held up well. The handle is missing, but the attachment looks like an eagle to me. I think this is going to date sometime between Colonial to the early 1800's based on the context of what it was found with.

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    The flower pattern on this piece of cast iron was too cool not to process. Included is a before and obviously after photo.

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    Hoe blades with a interesting tiny triangular one.

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    A little bone was left on the knife handle too.

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    Some before shots of the tools and utensils.

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    I took some pictures of the tools after electrolysis and before hot wax. The wax always dulls the finish and darkens them, but before cooking they have a nice black metallic finish.

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    I had to fire up a second pot to cook all this stuff today. I typically use just the small one, but with some larger pieces I had to run dueling pots of boiling wax... what could go wrong?!

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    I'm back into spring house projects so I'm not sure when I'll get back out. Looking forward to seeing everyones hunts on here to tie me over. Thanks for looking and happy hunting everyone.

  2. #2
    us
    Dec 2006
    Colonial Virginia
    XP Deus Teknetics T2
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    That's a boat load of buttons and I love the DB LC. My fav of the thousand relics posted is the shovel. I dug a shovel with wood still in it one time, tucked it away to get before I left but never went back to get it. After seeing yours cleaned up, I wished it had. I'll have to pick your brain some time ragarding your wax process. Great preservation as usual B-rad. Midge

  3. #3
    us
    Ken

    Nov 2014
    Northern Ca.
    Equinox 800
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    Nice Going! Tons of great finds!
    America the Beautiful!

    My You Tube Channel

    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC2w...9Ep5TbCeQqR1GQ



    Ken

  4. #4
    us
    CASPER

    Jan 2012
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    Motto = "I try to hit where others cant or others wont "

  5. #5
    Charter Member
    us
    Fly Navy!

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  6. #6
    us
    art

    Dec 2015
    Maryland's eastern shore
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    Congrats on a great assortment of finds and thanks for sharing
    Growing old is not for sissies I thought it would take longer to get old.

  7. #7
    us
    Apr 2015
    Northeast Rhode Island
    AT Pro and XP Deus. Garrett Carrot and MI-6.
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    Awesome finds and thanks for displaying!

  8. #8

    Jan 2016
    SC
    Minelab Safari
    781
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    Just great work! Great write up as well. Always nice seeing all that iron cleaned up so perfect. Nice work!
    2018 Best Finds

    Coins:
    1830 Capped Bust Half Dime
    1859 IHP

    Relics:
    82nd Regiment of Foot Button
    C. Rowley Confederate Block I Button
    1808-1830 State Militia Rifles Eagle Button
    Union GS Infantry Cuff Button
    King George II Trade Weight
    Duke of Wellington Commemorative Button

  9. #9
    The more I see your iron preservation work the more I'm impressed Brad. As with Joey, I'm gonna have to get some pointers from you on the wax method. Can we get a group training rate ? I know you made some nice non-ferrous finds, but I keep wanting to gravitate back to the iron. Those are some very interesting looking hoes, and I love that spade. I've only recovered one complete example in 20+ years so I know how hard they are to come by. Looks like you need to keep hitting that site. With all that iron there has to be a nice pit or two lurking nearby, and then you can get back to your 2nd favorite pastime - sifting. Another outstanding and informative post ....
    Z.K. likes this.
    MY BOOK HAS SOLD OUT OF ALL 1200+ COPIES IN LESS THAN 4 MONTHS. NO 2ND PRINTING IS ANTICIPATED AT THIS TIME. THANKS TO ALL WHO MADE THIS PROJECT A SUCCESS.


  10. #10
    us
    Jul 2010
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Fisher F75, Garrett AT Gold, XP Deus, Fisher 1270
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    That's a nice haul of relics and coins Brad. You must put a ton of time in on the iron, but the results speak for themselves.
    Spanish Silver Totals
    Cut Pieces = 19
    Half Reals = 30
    1 Reals = 11
    2 Reales = 6
    8 Reales = 1
    2 Reale Cobs = 2
    Other Early Silver Coins
    1797 & 1803 Draped Bust Dimes
    1830 Capped Bust 5 cents
    1827 Capped Bust dime
    1661 Hammered silver King Leopold
    1697 William III 6-pence
    Rev War Buttons
    3rd Battalion PA, Hartley's Regiment, USA, (4) 18th Royal Irish, (2) Rattlesnake & Stars
    Civil War Plates
    VA Militia Cross Belt, CS Tongue, CS Wreath, VMM, US Box, Model 1851 Sword, Militia Plate w/Star

  11. #11
    us
    Apr 2013
    East Coast - USA
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    Quote Originally Posted by joeyfresh View Post
    That's a boat load of buttons and I love the DB LC. My fav of the thousand relics posted is the shovel. I dug a shovel with wood still in it one time, tucked it away to get before I left but never went back to get it. After seeing yours cleaned up, I wished it had. I'll have to pick your brain some time ragarding your wax process. Great preservation as usual B-rad. Midge
    Thanks man. When I started detecting, the internet didn't exist and therefore I didn't know what most of what I dug was, or how to preserve it properly. I left a couple complete iron stirrups by a barn because they were "junk". Sad! Hopefully its not too late to get that shovel you left. I'd dug a couple tools with wood still on them and its certainly not common.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill D. (VA) View Post
    The more I see your iron preservation work the more I'm impressed Brad. As with Joey, I'm gonna have to get some pointers from you on the wax method. Can we get a group training rate ? I know you made some nice non-ferrous finds, but I keep wanting to gravitate back to the iron. Those are some very interesting looking hoes, and I love that spade. I've only recovered one complete example in 20+ years so I know how hard they are to come by. Looks like you need to keep hitting that site. With all that iron there has to be a nice pit or two lurking nearby, and then you can get back to your 2nd favorite pastime - sifting. Another outstanding and informative post ....
    Thanks a ton man. That spade made me really happy. I'm unsure if there was a bracket on the eye that would have extended up the shaft of the handle, or if the handle was just nailed into the eye. I've dug those brackets before and I've dug spade blades... but I'm not sure of all the styles. I suppose it was whatever the blacksmith could do to make a sturdy tool... and that's how he made it.


    The wax process is super simple, however probably a little dangerous since its working with boiling wax and wet iron I've been doing it for 3 or 4 years now with no problems at all. I picked that 1980's coleman stove up at a flea market for about $10. They're very easy to find at flea markets and they last forever. New ones are much pricier. Walmart sells those cheap aluminum pots I use for about $10. The smaller one is best because the stove can heat it up better. Then I buy CHEAP unscented white candles... typically also at Walmart since the big ones in a 3-pack are just a few bucks. I melt them in the pot on the Coleman and remove the wicks and labels.

    After electrolysis I use baking soda and the garden hose and make a paste, then scrub the iron with the paste and a Harbor Freight wire brush. This removes some of the loose scale and some of the black carbon that sticks to it. Then I hose them off very well to make sure all the baking soda and junk is removed. I'll attach a piece of bailing wire to them to make it easier to remove from the hot wax. Then right away, they go into the hot wax on the Coleman stove in my driveway. You'll know when it reaches boiling because the water in the iron will boil off and foam the wax. The wax will smoke some, but that's normal. I typically let it boil for about 5-10 min or so until there aren't really any more bubbles coming from the iron. Then I turn the burner off and let them sit for 10 min or so in the wax to cool a little and allow the wax to penetrate more. Then I remove them and put them on construction paper and blot them with paper towels to keep the wax from pooling, then hang them up by the wire and continue to blot them as they cool. The great thing is its only about 30 min from the time they come out of electrolysis until they are completely dried, cooled and preserved. SO there is no long drying, flash rusting, and poly coats that take a while. Its just my personal preference, but I like the dull satin coating the wax leaves.

    My safety concerns: Having wax past the boiling temps of water is obviously a little dangerous. I wear leather gloves when working with it and have a pair of old channel lock pliers I use to fish pieces out if the wire on each piece gets too hot. If I put a thick piece like an ax bit in, I'll also wear safety glasses too. Never had it happen, but I suppose a void in a cast thick piece of iron could fill with steam and pop... I like seeing things, so I'll protect my eyes! I'm fire-phobic too and don't take hot wax and an open flame lightly even though its outside... however I'm also a bit ADD and go from one thing to the next a little too fast and I forgot I had the wax pot on for over 40 min once on full heat. I came back to it and it was billowing smoke, but never caught fire. So they tells me its pretty damn hard to ignite, but I don't want to find out. The pots come with a top too, so it'd be easy to just put the lid on if something did happen. That said, my biggest concern is putting the pot of boiling wax in a safe place while it cools. I have old bricks I dug up that I place it on out of the way to cool off. The wax lasts for years. I've only replaced it once with fresh wax... but typically I just add a new candle to it every year or so to keep it at the right level for the wax I lose to each piece of iron.

    So that's all the info you guys need to know! Don't let my safety concerns deter you... I'm overly cautious but the whole process is super simple. My neighbors probably think I'm cooking up a weekly batch of meth in my driveway too... why else would you have an old stove and smoking pots sitting in your driveway.

  12. #12
    us
    Apr 2013
    East Coast - USA
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    Quote Originally Posted by JackalopeZL1 View Post
    Nice Going! Tons of great finds!
    Thanks man! Keep killing it out on the West Coast... looking forward to your next post.

    Quote Originally Posted by CASPER-2 View Post
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    Thanks man!

    Quote Originally Posted by vpnavy View Post

    ..: NICE FINDS OutdoorAdv :..
    Thank you vpnavy!

    Quote Originally Posted by trapperart View Post
    Congrats on a great assortment of finds and thanks for sharing
    Thank you Art!

    Quote Originally Posted by cologneman View Post
    Awesome finds and thanks for displaying!
    Thanks cologneman!

    Quote Originally Posted by Stef45 View Post
    Just great work! Great write up as well. Always nice seeing all that iron cleaned up so perfect. Nice work!
    Thanks man! Now I have to find a spot to display this iron... I'm out of room. ha

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve in PA View Post
    That's a nice haul of relics and coins Brad. You must put a ton of time in on the iron, but the results speak for themselves.
    Thanks a ton Steve! It does take some time, especially those big pieces... My carbon anodes are always running at their max efficiency because they don't corrode at all. That helps a TON! Back when I was using iron anodes and had to keep cleaning them, processing this much iron would have taken me a month or more.

  13. #13
    us
    ebay "ulster-relic"

    Dec 2012
    port ewen ny
    AT-PRO
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    think I just wet myself


    quality hunt forkin' around with them hoes & you got a lotta balls, especially showing those 3 captured Eagles, now_____buckle up and go dig some clad like the rest of us

  14. #14
    us
    Apr 2013
    East Coast - USA
    XP Deus, GPX 4500, Equinox 800, AT Max
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    Quote Originally Posted by port ewen ace View Post
    think I just wet myself


    quality hunt forkin' around with them hoes & you got a lotta balls, especially showing those 3 captured Eagles, now_____buckle up and go dig some clad like the rest of us
    Hahaha. Thanks a ton man. I don't dig too many musket balls, but those all came in a streak of good signals and they were scattered about... I really enjoy finding them. I've only dug one fat IHP for those 3 eagles . When a fat one come out of the dirt, I'm always hoping it's a IHP, but there keeps being damn eagles on them. Haha. I'm not immune to clad... It shows up. Ha

  15. #15
    us
    Jun 2015
    The Grants
    Etrac
    1,007
    1425 times
    Metal Detecting
    Super post as usual. Tough to call my favorites of the bunch, but the floral cast piece (would that have adorned a mantelpiece?), spade blade, and those cufflinks I spy really pop out...the latter in part because I've never dug one, let alone a set.

    Congrats on your first curry comb and going from a pair to a flock of eagles!
    I have but three things to teach: simplicity, patience, and compassion. These three are your greatest treasures. -Lao Tzu

    Those who do not look upon themselves as a link connecting the past with the future, do not perform their duty to the world. - Daniel Webster

    Fun Finds:
    2017 GW Button
    2016 Colonial Spanish silver pocket spill, Beauty Connie, Krampus
    2015 3 State Copper Day, Colonial coin purse with 12 half pennies

 

 
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