A Beach Hunter's Enduring Wonderment

ColonelDan

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Jan 19, 2014
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I've been beach hunting for more than a few years now and still have yet to satisfactorily answer this one burning question.

Why do people even bring pennies to the beach?

You can't buy anything with them, you can't do anything with them really except throw them away just to tease those pesky detectorists...and I have experienced/seen that. Pennies have always been and remain the most prolific coin found on the beach...at least they are on our Central Florida beaches.

What's your theory as to why people bring pennies to the beach? I'm sure we'll get a kick out of some of your answers. :laughing7:
 
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RustyGold

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Aug 16, 2013
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I have always thought of them as something that children are given to play with. Next thought just plain old pocket spills.
 

zigzag

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Sep 17, 2011
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174
ft laud, fl
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CTX 3030, 2 xcal II 1000's, 1 has OBN's remote PP & peltor HP's, 2 aquasounds, dual field, sunspot 920i hybrid, 720i, 3 rtg scoops, Howie scoop
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They cost more to mint than they're worth so why keep making them. Canada stopped minting them in 2012.
 

ARC

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Aug 19, 2014
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LoL... Col. Dan...

Had "one of those days" I see.

Heh.

When I read this I felt that ole feeling I have felt many... MANY times.

Beach hunting in old days before better detectors and pull tabs was worse if that is any consolation.

:)
 

pat-tekker-cat

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Feb 23, 2011
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S. Fl.
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I seem to find pennies most, where the little kiddies hang out, play, & swim.
With all the new electronic parking meters (pay by phone),
I seem to find less & less change.
I do however, seem to be finding more cell phones. :laughing7:
 

Rodbuster209

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Oct 26, 2010
832
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Without a doubt some of my competition will seed one of the places I frequent on a regular basis. I like to think about what I would do if I ever caught them.
 

CASPER-2

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Jan 3, 2012
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I was told that Latinos play games with them especially from edge of water - they "flick" them out into the water and i think they gamble/ bet on distance
or will float a cup and try to get in - that is why some spots are loaded with them - there are spots in S.Fla. where ive found 100 plus
pennies in water in a day - i think i got 200 in one day on one of my trips at a spot that is about 99% latinos
 

CASPER-2

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Jan 3, 2012
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this is from a short trip to fla. a few yrs back - all from water
enough pennies for ya? Lucky for me I can pinpoint real good with my cz21 - I get most on first scoop (use large basket RTG scoop)
so I will scoop and check and move on to next target while sand drains - I have friends that use large coils and take
3-4 scoops to retrieve - that I would not like
DSCN0871.jpg
 

CASPER-2

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another short Fla. trip (4 days hunting) - also my best trip ever
lots of pennies - luckily lots of other goodies too...all from water
 

CASPER-2

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Jan 3, 2012
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short trip to US V.I. - - ALL from water
still - lots of pennies - If I was a poor local - I'd sit with a bucket and a sign that says
please throw unwanted pennies here and any other unwanted change...thank you
homeless guys in Fla. should do the same
DSCN0797.JPG
 

CASPER-2

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Jan 3, 2012
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short trip to Puerto Rico I got a ton too...funny up here in New england - we dont get as many
at least not from water ...I hit a lot of older spots but at newer beaches I probably get maybe a dozen pennies and these are usually from parents throwing in for kids to find with masks (ive seen it)
- think lot of people up here throw in donation jars or leave in the give a penny...take a penny trays at most stores
i usually do that
 

Treasure_Hunter

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Jul 27, 2006
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They do it just to tick people who metal detect off.
 

LawrencetheMDer

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Feb 22, 2014
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I did a study a while back and compared US Mintage figures for coins with their percentages I found on the beach (based on about 4,000 coins). Turns out, the percentage of cents, nickels, dimes and quarters I found with my detectors (Excal, CTX 3030, Nox 800) closely match percentages based on mintage figures. BTW cents are about 50% of coins found. Soooo, it would appear that all coins, 01 - 25c any ways, found on the beach reflect what would be expected based on pocket change (assuming pocket change reflects US mintage figures).
Percentages
Mint Figures 17.9 22.1 10.9 49.2
My Figs (4456 coins) 16% 22% 11% 50%
 

dewcon4414

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Mar 22, 2006
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I think a lot of it they would bring cash for food ect. Before they had the ability to use a credit card. Just now getting apps that do that right. So out that change falls in and out of the water. Tax... creates change as well.
 

CASPER-2

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Jan 3, 2012
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I did a study a while back and compared US Mintage figures for coins with their percentages I found on the beach (based on about 4,000 coins). Turns out, the percentage of cents, nickels, dimes and quarters I found with my detectors (Excal, CTX 3030, Nox 800) closely match percentages based on mintage figures. BTW cents are about 50% of coins found. Soooo, it would appear that all coins, 01 - 25c any ways, found on the beach reflect what would be expected based on pocket change (assuming pocket change reflects US mintage figures).
Percentages
Mint Figures 17.9 22.1 10.9 49.2
My Figs (4456 coins) 16% 22% 11% 50%

up here - I usually get more quarters than pennies or more non pennies than pennies
cant speak for others
 

CASPER-2

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They do it just to tick people who metal detect off.
Yes...I have been at spots when people are there and have caught a-holes throwing pennies at/towards me
they think they are being cute but I wear a mask and usually with clear water I see them flutter to the bottom
I shouldn't do it but I will usually turn around or go deeper or shallower depending where they land
A few times I deviated from my original path because of them and have found gold - a few times I
have thanked them too. I have said "thanks jerk...I just found a gold ring because I moved because of you
throwing coins in front of me" Don't know if I would have turned back and went to that area and found it anyways
- probably not because of them doing that - I would have stayed away from them.
Ive had kids go to shore (they think I cant hear them) and ask parents for some change and walk out
and try and drop in front of me. My mask is mirrored and they cant see my eyes (which I love)
so I can face forward and still look sideways and see them conspiring to walk in front of me and drop some
...once again (I don't care if they are dropping quarters) I will turn around or go around - funny to see
their faces when I do - cause when there is more than one (usually 3 or more) they get all giddy
and are full of anticipation as I approach the area and have guilt written on their faces and then
I turn and go other way and then they look like their dog died. Ive gotten pissed if adults or kids
don't give it up and have yelled at them - don't care their age - I tell them to either grow up or
get a life - I don't put up with BS any more - spent the whole 1st half of my taking it - no more
wish I had some vids - I usually have never gotten any return flack - probably because they know
Im right - at least the adults.
along the same lines - as for adults doing stupid things at beach
Ive had a couple of times (now thinking at very least 3 times) when ive been in water at sun rise
and guy with dog is near shore line and probably because of my get up - wet suit with mirrored mask
that their dogs have seen me and get excited and want to come after me - but adult has
instigated the dog more and thinks I cant hear him saying "you want to get him?...you want to get the bad man?"
and dogs have gone berserk and you could see the dog pulling hard and growling and barking and if they
let go - animal would come and try and rip my throat out. One was crazy and the guy thought it was funny
Once again I have mirrored mask lens and would make like im paying no mind and continue forward
while looking sideways at them . Even people on shore couldn't believe this one guy. Now rules of these spots
say No dogs what so ever but they think cause life guards aren't there they can do what they like. Some of beaches
don't allow them even off season. I said to the guy finally - "You know there are no dogs allowed on this beach!"
He told me to #@$% myself and said he'd let the dog loose after me. I was squatting and stood up and told
him go ahead then lifted my large scoop out of the water and dropped my machine and told him to go ahead
and Id take his dogs head off and then come after him. People on beach luckily were on my side. I would bet
the house he was not a local and a couple told me later that his dog crapped and he would not pick it up -
which PO'ed them. Im a dog lover - but cant stand someone that don't care about the rest of us.
reason why most beaches say no dogs allowed
 

OBN

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One thing interesting about the older beach's here in the bay I find pennies and nickels run close in the counts. Dimes seem to be the lesser and quarters being just a few more then dimes. And these would be silver coins.
 

DJWEHAGE

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I've pondered this question often. One theory I have, especially with the zinc's, is that they are so light, that they haven't buried themselves so deep in the sand. Hence, more readily and easily detected. After a cut has developed, it seems if a penny is to be found, it is more likely a greenie- pre '82 copper. Why we're still using pennies today is another topic. IMHO, a waste. The other thought I ponder is why people feel the need to take off the pull tab off the can...
 

CASPER-2

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Jan 3, 2012
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I've pondered this question often. One theory I have, especially with the zinc's, is that they are so light, that they haven't buried themselves so deep in the sand. Hence, more readily and easily detected. After a cut has developed, it seems if a penny is to be found, it is more likely a greenie- pre '82 copper. Why we're still using pennies today is another topic. IMHO, a waste. The other thought I ponder is why people feel the need to take off the pull tab off the can...
They should get rid of the penny - and enlarge the dime :thumbsup:
I know people that pull them off and donate other than that it is stupid to remove
beaches probably should have put cans near life guard stands for people to deposit the tabs
 

Dancer

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Dec 21, 2015
29
92
Pennsylvania
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Worst part about it. Most of the pennies found on the beach / Water are unfit for using. Rotted junk.
 

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