For most people, metal detecting and coin shooting provide a feeling of freedom and adventure. You’re outside, walking through lovely scenery, the sun is warm, and you’re having a wonderful time. So, the idea of recordkeeping seems boring and unnecessary. However, in this article, I’ll show you the benefits of recordkeeping and how to keep it to a minimum.

The Basics of Recordkeeping

When metal detecting and coin shooting enthusiasts get together, they often talk about what they found last and where… it’s a form of storytelling and it’s exciting to hear. Why is it exciting? Because you learn where the ‘finds’ are being made. In the same way, some basic recordkeeping can show you patterns in your detecting adventures, i.e. I found lots of silver coins at Grant Park on three separate occasions. So, if other locations are producing little or nothing, then you know that you can return to Grant Park and find silver coins.

Remember that old-school idea from English Composition Class on how to describe anything? "Who, what, when, where, why and how?” This is a handy memory tool to record basic info on each metal detecting adventure.

Who – Who did you go with? Any Metal Detecting buddies?
What – What did you find? The total number of coins? Was silver or gold found?
When – When did you go? What’s the date and was it a weekday or weekend?
Where – Where is the site? What’s the name of the site / school / beach?
Why – Why would you return to the site? Lots of coins found? Silver or gold?
How – How did you find items? Record the name of the detector used and its settings.

At minimum, you can write this information on a pad of lined paper, and keep it with your detector. Or, one step better, buy one of those bound journals with lined paper. I recommended a bound journal because it withstands the weather and repeated handling over time, and you can keep it in your car or store it with your detector.

A journal like this can last for years. It even becomes a keep-sake that can be passed on to children.

You don’t need to spend a lot of money on recordkeeping. These bound journals range from and up.

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