My quick analysis yesterday of the "Old Gold" posts on this blog caused me to start thinking (always dangerous) and eventually prompted me to take a much closer look at the track record for such items. The analysis I link to above is the result. I found it quite edifying, and I trust you will as well.
One key takeaway: If you eliminate tests that are "TBD" and only count once, taking the most positive result, items that were re-tried multiple times (e.g. Magic Lint Roller, tried five times!), the record for Old Gold items is 5 for 24. That amounts to a 1 in 5 hit rate, which is twice as good as I guessed it would be and not so mediocre after all.
(Update: Thanks to a few emails from friends, I have since added four more items to the list, which improves the record to 6 for 24 -- a 1 in 4 hit rate.)
On a side note, I found several other items on this blog that were technically "Old Gold" but had enough of a twist not to include on my list. Perhaps some other time I will study those items and evaluate that related strategy for generating hits.