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Australian WWII - Far North Queensland Metal detecting and recovery

Article about: Hi Blokes ~ I am posting this as an going blog for interested parties that have been following my fossicking of (extensive) WWII ~ Far North Qld Australia . This area has been described in r

  1. #471

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    Cheers

    I figured it was a six pounder as I have two pounder flash tubes and primers plus actual shell cases and this too large for two pounders~

    Additionally as you well know ~ this site we are currently working was occupied by both 2 and 6 pounder guns....Plus Boys guns ~

    I am hoping to dig some Boys rounds ~

  2. #472

    Default

    Wednesday ~

    Another earl start ~ on site < 07.30 > ~ same 'New' site ~ very heavy going and a lot of 'sky craneing' or noodling through the dense grass.

    The crazy part was when we set up our "base camp" next to the vehicle, and looked for a brass identity plate that Terry lost several weeks ago before the rains started ~ Here we found no brass rectangle But I spent over an hour MD immediately next to the vehicle and the kits~

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    Buckles and misc including a LOT of blank 303 shells ~ including a cache of some 20 303 blanks ~

    Eventually I moved on ~ then dug a hole to China for a brilliant signal ! A &*^& Water drum bung !!!!

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    Smoko at 10.00 ~ Ed was doing okay but as suggested he had sifted through the "Victory over Japan day hole" which gave him the numbers ~ incl another 1943 Florin ~ and the brass tradesman's hammer head ??

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    I was definitely on the improvement trail with the CTX ~ but Ed was definitely on the luck run too ~

    Most improvement on my part was by lowering the harness straps to allow the MD/ coil to potentially press the ground and GO SLOWER !

    We split after smoko and I eventually moved off to explore another site a short distance away and INSTANTLY I started getting good clean high tone signals ~ Straight up I dug a superb brass jacket waist coat belt buckle. These clean up superbly as I have found them before ~ But this one has the tank which is rare event !

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    There were heaps of signals ~ in fact I started ignoring signals in search of 'better' signals in the hope of coins or even rarer relics such as Rising Suns or even badges !

    Then Ed appeared from the higher ground and he had a 'Quarter master's" badge ~ or 90% of it ~

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    So by 15.00 it was time to call it a day ~

    I was well pleased with my improvement in handling the CTX ~

    As suggested all my targets were not associated with the VJ hole ~ Ed cheated there LOL ~ but he got the high quality targets so Lady Luck once again rode his shoulder !

    My turn soon ! LOL

    My lot first ~ included a 4" mortar safety cap and a webbing belt buckle but the tunic waist belt buckle is my favourite for the day ~

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  3. #473

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    More relics resto's

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  4. #474

    Default

    more good finds mate, what's your method of cleaning
    ??

  5. #475

    Angry

    Hamish

    I use electrolysis ~ a small AC/ DC up to > 6V converter~ I hand buff then place in tub with a pinch of Napi-San and a pinch of salt ~ ( No chemist but figure just the salt would probably work too ~

    Opps short version ~

  6. #476

    Default

    Hamish

    I use electrolysis ~ a small AC/ DC up to > 6V converter~ I hand buff then place in tub with a pinch of Napi-San and a pinch of salt ~ ( I am No chemist but figure just the salt would probably work too ~)
    I keep the voltage down to about 4-5V and I use steel as an anode.

    Tried most other things ~ Stainless Steel is great but then you are dealing with an extremely toxic mix ~

    So don't go there !

    I left the last lot as above in for around 10 days ~ I have to keep scraping off the anode as it forms a lot of caking and this will eventually stop the process ! So a quick scrape and resume ~

    Then recently I found a (Wiltshire) BBQ scraper and brass brush for $4 in local IGA and it is BRILLIANT tool ~ Just buff off under warm water!

    Then if deemed practical as in the 380 rounds and the safety star cap ~ I will 'polish' with very fine wet and dry and finish off with metal polish ~

    But the BBQ buff works a trick by itself ~

    The soils vary greatly around here and whiel the belt buckle I found last Weds was a cracker in bewt condition~ too often the relics suffer severely by acidic and extremes of soil ~

    I am about to try the boiling water and aluminium foil plus bi-carb soda to clean up Silvers as mtae Ed has had great results with his pre-decimals of late ~


    Another fantastic tool I have found is EBay !

    I pan through the listings in quieter moments and I have managed to identify a LOT of relics and applications ~ the most recent is the capture I found Sunday !

    The webbing buckle I knew came from an Officer's webbing kit as we find quite afew of these buckles ~

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    I have identified many mystery items this way ~

  7. #477

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    More relics ~ the anticipated jacket belt buckel and a webbing buckle ~

    The belt buckle which is typical of a number I have found ~ but this one is extracted from the latest site we have found and certainly vies well for any relics which we WILL find ~

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    The items are buffed and preliminary finished but not completed ~ including hte .380's .

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  8. #478

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    Lagging behind here ~

    Fossick #199 July 11

    A solo hunt ~ two parts ~ went to a site nearby ~ 10 kms ~ to check out the current aituation ~

    But I was horrified to find the a site which farmer "Laurie" reckoned he was going to maintain as a clear field is now a tangled mass of Rat Tail grass ~

    We know there was a military presence but seems the main camp site on a private property near by. They know my partner Ed and vice versa but the two parties have yet to parley and allow acces~



    So i drove the short distance to where "Laurie" described the house remnants of a old Digger who has long since passed on ~

    I burst out laughing when I got out of the vehicle and within 2-3 paces of the car I hit great signal .. turned out to be a KG V 1/2 penny ~ But that was about it ~


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    So after about an hour I decided to press on to one of my well worn sites just to practice with the new CTX ~

    Spent a few hours and was pleasantly to surprise my revised techniques and skill base with the CTX was improving with time. As the afternoon wore on I was getting more and more targets in as suggested very well worn site!

    But turned out to be one of my very late days as I kept finding more signals ~

    Not a huge day but some cool finds ~ including the beer bottle dated 1945!



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  9. #479

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    July 15

    Fossick #200

    An early start ~ and freezing ~ Hey this is tropical Far North Queensland ~ Zero Deg ~ Com' onhn !!!

    Headed off around 06.30 ~ and spectacular scenery ~

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    Straight into the latest area again with high hopes ~ But sadly the site has not delivered as we had hoped , although Ed found another dump site ~

    I joined him but the huge number of nails and ferrous trash was far less than inspiring but a fe goodies did come forth ~

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    Excellent condition and once it warmed up a great day ~

    As the day drew to a close again I wandered down to the nearby river edge and blow me down ~ I found an array of targets ~ including a 6 pounder solid shot round ~ sadly suffering from the constant water emersion ~

    And 25 Pounder ( 66 mm) base plug , with primer ~ perhaps planned as a Trench art piece but dumped ~

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    My over all gathering for the day

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    Ed's collection ~ including china mug with D/|\D stamp on the base, plus Rising Sun!

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    The 25 lber fuze plus related shots ~ Ed asked me to see if the primer he found on the previous hunt woudl fit ~ it sure does and both fuzes have a same designation; RY 342 . ( Input on the subject welcome ,, thanks!)

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    An intriguing piece ~ melted glass with a button in situ !

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    Another great team effort ~

  10. #480

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    Last Sunday Ed and I headed out yet again real early ~ I planned a 'exploration ' hunt ~ and endeavour to expand our 'data base ' ~

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    We spent around 2 hours checking sites and rigged up and checked several sites ~ then debated the potentials and whether we should simply re-route and go to the extreme even further afield site ~

    But we agreed we had spent enough time researching and we should just go work some of our regular sites ~ We headed to a near by site which we had looked at previously but decided ti was far too over grown with dense ground weeds ~

    But as I insisted we should simply push through the ground tangle and head up the nearby hill ~ so off we went.

    I skirted the bush and then drove to the higher ground which almost instantly delivered for me when i hit a target area of around ONE square meter ~

    I literally spent the later morning and afternoon in that one spot ~ I could not believe the targets in that one area~

    Early results and in impressive condition ~

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    Ed. my MD mate did not do quite so well ~ and had a very mixed bag .. Seems i am really getting to grips with the Minelab CTX ~

    Mid morning tally and Smoko ~

    Ed's catch ~ real mixed bag .. but some nice webbing buckles.. I believe ~ as I explained to Ed, the buckles are US issue but by 1944, supplies of US military fittings were coming through to the Australian forces ~

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    My collection which included numerous King George V & VI silvers and coppers ~ plus ACP 45 and 9 mm rounds.. a good start for me I felt !


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    We split again after Smoko .. I headed out for a quick scout around before returning to the same site ~

    We decided to call it a day around 15.00 and on the way back to base camp I dug a grubby dirty encrusted Rising Sun ~ I also dug a single unusual primer ~

    Ed scored a cluster of unusually large primers ~ Any help appreciated ~ My primer wa same but smaller with no scribing!

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    My final tally ~

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    But when I finally returned home and cleaned my relics I was totally blown away by some of the results ~

    The AMF button has the original black enamel completely intact ~ amazing ~

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    But the Creme la Creme was the Rising Sun ..
    With absolute minimum cleaning ~ merely brushed under running water this has turned otu to be a STUNNING relic ~

    This is one of ~ if not the BEST RIsing Sun example I have found to date absolutely stunning ! Immaculate!!

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    So this was one of my long over due better days !

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