Just Stout Stuff…

A FUN TIME WITH THE TREASURE MASTER

FINALLY, a day in the of 80’s, and even a little breeze.  What gives? I kept stepping out on the back porch to make sure it wasn’t a mirage….

Anyway it was the lift I needed.  I put two new AA batteries in my TreasureMaster, and headed to an area that shall remain a secret. At least for a little while.

I spent about two hours total, and while I didn’t “knock ’em dead”, I did find one silver dime, four Wheaties, and for the first time in a long time, I had fun.  It was fun because the TreasureMaster, at 2.8 pounds, was easy to swing and for this old man, weight has become a major factor.

TMfinds2

I also hesitate to say this because I don’t want to get back into an old habit, but all of my coin finds were accurately identified, and I really like the “arc like” template that is used on both the TreasureMaster and TreasureMaster Pro.

TMReadoutAs in the past I opted for the coin/jewelry program, and was able to increase the sensitivity to 6.  The ground was still pretty hard, and I was not in the mood to dig the subtle hums, though I will most definitely return with that task in mind. The deepest coin, a quarter, was five inches.

I know my aches, pains and senior preferences don’t match yours, nor do my finds come close to those shown in cyberspace, but as they say, it is what it is, and someday you might understand.

Thank you White’s for the TreasureMaster.  I am having fun again…..

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RECENT FACEBOOK FOLLIES….

The other night I ran across this Facebook post from a detectorist friend….

“I will continue to run my page on Facebook, but I am done posting my finds on here.. I am just so sick of the drama over a simple hobby, And also the kissing up to companies just to get free stuff. But if you want to see any of my finds from now on Tekkie8788 (not the real name) is my YouTube name.. Maybe when the drama stops ill be back….”

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Then a conversation with a FB friend:

Tekkie: “Hey everyone. If you you like coins of any kind, please join our little group….

Dick Stout: “Another one?”

Tekkie: “I’ve had this group up for years Dick. I keep it small with good, friendly members.”

Dick Stout: “I understand but have you ever typed “metal detecting” in the search bar above?”

Dick Stout: “What will be different about this page?”

Tekkie: Tons of groups on here. I like to keep this one strictly coin related. Learning source and simply a place to show off a little. Not trying to be different, just a little crazy about Coins! Lol.”

Dick Stout: “I appreciate you my friend, but when I go online in the morning and click on FB, I find the same post a zillion times in a zillion places, and honestly I can only look at YouTube videos so long before they become a blur.”

Tekkie: I hear ya. That’s where I’m always torn. I try to base it to my favorite groups, but then when I don’t post in others I’m asked why or it’s taken the wrong way. It’s a two way street. Only thing I can tell you is not to be a member of all the groups. I must be in 70 or 80 of them. It’s impossible to keep up.”

Dick Stout: “All these FB pages have become promotional venues, and they should really own up to it. They were started with good intentions, but once up and going, the originator disappears into the woodwork and strangers take over, usually promoting their expertise or some brand of detector. And honestly, most of the ones I joined are so far from what they were advertised to be that I left. We are so over saturated on Facebook it’s comical. JMO.”

Tekkie: “I believe you are right Dick, but there’s some good groups out there yet. The growing numbers in the hobby just like in anything else has its good points and bad points. What to do?”

Dick Stout: “Okay, will add it to my list….”

Tekkie: “Just a fyi, it’s not just a metal detecting group. It’s all coins in general, dug or not. Fun bunch of folks in here.”

Dick Stout: “Hmm, where have I heard that before….LOL.”

All of this social media hullabaloo and excess reminded me of this earlier blog post from last year…..

A SIMPLER TIME OR JUST MY IMAGINATION?

Everyone knows by now that I tend to get turned off by the ever-increasing overkill and over hype of our hobby. I also suspect I am the only tekkie today who feels this way. Perhaps it’s because I am 73, and like most seniors, tend to remember my early years, the good ole days, a time when I could seemingly do it all. It might also be because the internet has a way to over amplify everything. I honestly don’t know. I mean aside from the Shadow “who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of ‘old’ men?”

I started out detecting in the early 70’s because I was a coin collector. I would see metal detector ads in Coin World and thought “damn, how cool to be able to find coins instead of buying them”. Eventually I scratched my itch, bought a White’s ‘Coinmaster’ and voilà , I was a treasure hunter. Interestingly, Joe Attinello, the White’s dealer who sold the detector to me, became my detecting partner and we had a helluva lot of fun over the years.

It was indeed more fun to find them than buy them....

It was indeed more fun to find them than buy them….

In the beginning we hunted parks, schools and of course the Jersey shore. Joe wasn’t happy unless he was on the beach checking out the ladies wear (or lack thereof). In fact he was so into hunting the shore that he came up with an ingenious plan that would get us there for under a dollar.

You see when the first casinos opened in Atlantic City, they offered free round trip bus rides from various towns and cities within the state. They also gave you free lunch and ten dollars in tokens just to get you in their place of business. Joe’s plan? We put our detectors in small gym bags, got on the bus, and once we got to AC we each took turns watching our gear so we could get our free lunch tickets and our ten dollars in tokens. Next we stored our bags in one of the beach lockers (50 cents), and started detecting. We’d hunt for a while, put our detectors in the lockers, eat our free lunch (which was a fabulous all you eat buffet), and then used our tokens in the slots. If we didn’t become independently wealthy we would hit the beach again, and hunt until it was time to catch the bus back home (usually late afternoon). I hate to admit it but Joe’s plan worked like a charm.

Back then we almost always came home with quite a few silver coins, and that’s not bragging. It was just how things were in the 70’s and early 80’s. The competition in our neck of the woods was virtually non-existent, and it was a rarity to even come across someone else with a metal detector. Likewise, if you were diligent and did your homework, there was a good chance you would be the first to hunt that turn of the century one room school, church or picnic grove. As a result I spent a great deal of time at the local library, and became good friends with the gal in the research department, who always had a few new things for me to look at each time I visited.

At any given time I had a long list of places to try to locate, and I would guess maybe a third of them would pan out and prove productive. I was also lucky to be living in rural Hunterdon County, with old homesites and cellar holes literally in my back yard. I was having fun and as I kept adding to my coin collection I soon became bored with anything newer than 1900. If I didn’t come home with Barbers, Seated or Large cents it would be a bad day.

Okay, by now you are probably saying “knock off the BS Stout and tell us why this was a simpler time”... Well for starters, I only had ONE detector, with ONE coil, a carpenters apron and a large screwdriver. That my friends was my treasure hunting arsenal, and I can’t ever remember having a malfunction in the field. I also somehow managed to survive my forays into the wild without camouflage or week-long planning. It usually went something like this…

Hunt, come home, throw trash in garbage, junk items in box, clean coins, store in safe place, wash hands and pour a stiff one. Next day…repeat. It was a simpler time.

Today it seems everyone has to advertise their next “expedition”, spend five days getting their “gear” together, drive 300 miles, take photos and videos and when they come home, analyze every single thing they found. Maybe it’s just me, but honestly I really don’t give a rat’s ass about that 1945 lid from a Vaseline jar or that rusty ole toilet seat hinge you found in an outhouse. Sorry if that offends…JMO.

Look Ma, no pinpointer, no shovel, no camera and no camo!

Look Ma, no pinpointer, no shovel, no camera and no camo!

It was a simpler time because my pastime was not fueled by social media, but rather a once a month club meeting and a treasure magazine here and there. Likewise I wasn’t insulted or told how stupid I was, nor was I chastised for giving my opinion. I was not reminded, or should I say beaten over the head, about having to have other searchcoils or accessories in order to be successful. I was doing quite nicely thank you with my stock 7 inch coil and miracles of miracles, I was quite successful without having a pinpointer, shovel or camera! Jeezus, If my mother ever knew she would have killed me.!

It was a simpler time because instead of chatting on a forum I spent my spare time driving the back roads, looking for new places to detect. I spent my winters reading, researching, taking notes, having coffee and ‘face to face’ conversations (imagine that) with Joe or Dan Hamilton (a later detecting partner of mine). We would talk about where we might hunt when spring came and we’d joke about our past adventures, which almost always involved getting the best of each other at the end of the day. Our outings were not just about finding things…they were about fresh air, exercise and camaraderie, and for all you forum groupies..there were no “experts” back then, just a few “regular” guys who liked to share a beer, metal detect and have fun.

I know I am rambling so let me finish up….

Without a doubt the 70’s and 80’s were some of the best years of my life as well as the best years for enjoying my pastime. I was privileged to live in an area that had a lot of history and offered a lot of treasures to anyone who cared to seek them out. I can also honestly say I was never bothered or chased by anyone while swinging my coil, and the few tekkies I knew and associated with were always courteous and conscientious about leaving a site exactly as it was found.

Now having said all this, I don’t mean to imply that the pastime today is in ruins. I do think however that because of social media it’s choking on its current popularity and everyone’s over-hyped visions of grandeur. I really do try hard to get interested in and understand a lot of what you all are saying, but honestly it’s hard for me. Certainly there’s a generational thing involved, but I worry that what you are all ‘shouting and sharing’ in cyberspace will soon come back to bite you in the ass and in the long run, do more harm than good. Then again, what the hell do I know? To me it’s still just a hobby and not a very complicated one at that.

Finally, what happens to your ability and/or right to metal detect five years down the road will certainly affect you a helluva lot more than me, so I would urge you to stay classy and be cautious at the same time.

“I’m developing an attachment for you-and it fits right over your mouth”…Karl von Mueller

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12 Comments

Filed under Metal Detecting

12 responses to “Just Stout Stuff…

  1. Oh Dick, there you go again… but I have to agree with a lot of what you say. I’m not much into posting my finds, but now and then I have to, just to keep it real.

    And its interesting to me how quickly this has all developed. I’ve only been in the hobby 8 years, and I recall trying to put together club newsletters and how hard it was to get members to submit photos of their finds. It was like pulling teeth–and now those same folks are posting pics on Facebook after every hunt.

    I suppose technology has played a big part in this, with smartphones that take a photo and upload it to social media immediately. You gotta take the good with the bad, and although they were simpler times, and you looked quite dashing sporting those blue jeans, camo is where its at right now. Don’t worry though, someone will surely invent some awesome new detecting attire which will become all the rage, and soon I will be ranting about the simpler times when we all wore camo.

    And by the way, I’ve put a GoPro camera on my Christmas list this year ’cause I’m curious to see what all the fuss is about. I have high hopes that I will be able to entertain you and others,with continuous footage of all my fab oxen shoe finds. Not sure if I will ever have the time to edit all that crap though.

    And you’re right that folks should be careful what they post. Its not just fellow detectorist’s that are viewing these posts.

  2. bigtony

    Dick, yeah these days aren’t fun out there in the detecting world. We don’t share and enjoy ourselves like the old days. I too miss that and those that have passed who were fun and enjoyed this hobby.

    Today’s tech only separates us more from each other, and it also keeps us on the sofa and not in the field or researching. There is one topic I hope is in your book remake, and that is ” how to research”. I need to start asking questions about old stuff, real old stuff. I need to add some hunt before the hunt.

    PS: Nice digs, congratulations on your recent finds!

    • There is indeed a section on research….have to say this rewrite is testing my patience. Just lost about 30 pages and now looking to see if I can find them somewhere.

  3. bigtony

    Good luck with that. Don’t power down the computer. Look in temporary files with the date and time

  4. Bigtony

    Are you going to tear yourself away from the Re-write to watch the Rebel Gold on discovery channel? It airs here in NJ at 10 pm on the 15th

  5. Andy Baines

    Well done on getting out for a hunt Dick, can’t beat a bit of silver 🙂

  6. Angelika

    You said it right! “Have fun”. Most hunters lose sight of the reason most of us started the hobby. It becomes a pissing contest all over the net. Great to see you having fun!!👍🏻😃

  7. Digging History

    I’m really glad you had a good time detecting Dick. Well done on the finds and the silver dime. Good job pal.
    James 🙂

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