Metal Detecting

Metal Detecting is a great hobby to enjoy the outdoors, get some exercise and potentially find valuable items!

There are a few things to know before you get out there and start finding treasure. We’ll cover the benefits of metal detecting, all the equipment you’ll need and a few helpful tips to get you started!

man on beach with metal detector

What is Metal Detecting?

Metal detecting is a hobby where an individual uses a tool (metal detector) to search for valuable items in public areas such as parks, beaches and historical areas.

The metal detector is able to detect frequencies or anomalies underneath the ground and alerts the user. The user then evaluates the area and determines if he or she should dig to discover what’s underneath.

What makes metal detecting a worthwhile hobby?

There are many reasons that someone would pursue the hobby of metal detecting.

For one, it’s a great way to get outdoors and get some exercise. While out surveying you could end up walking several miles in one session!

Another reason that metal detecting is worthwhile is because of the potential to find valuable items! People find all sorts of items while detecting including old keys, jewelry, gold, watches and so much more!

What equipment do I need to get started?

Metal detectors can range between a hundred dollars up to $10,000 for professional grade detectors. If you are just getting started with metal detecting, there is no need to break the bank.

Below are three beginners models that we recommend…

black metal detector; white background
Bounty Hunter TK4 Tracker IV Metal Detector available from Amazon here…
bounty hunter metal detector
Bounty Hunter Discovery 3300 Metal Detector available from Amazon here…

Garrett Metal Detector
Garrett Metal Detectors Ace 300 Metal Detector Available from Amazon here…

What other tools might I need to start metal detecting?

There are a few other tools that will help you as you start metal detect including:

  • Pinpointer – A pinpointer, helps to determine exactly where the metal is after your larger metal detector has found where metal is. A pinpointer is a handheld device that is used after you’ve dug a hole and you are locating the precise spot of the treasure. We recommend this pinpointer from Garrett.
  • Digging Tool – Once you detect metal under the ground, you have to get to it! We recommend investing in a quality digging or edging tool. This will ensure that you are able to get to your treasures quickly and efficiently.
metal detector digging tool to find buried treasures. Grass, and small hand shovel with orange handle
SE Prospector’s Choice 12″ Serrated Edge Digger Available from Amazon here…
  • Sand Scoop – If you plan to start metal detecting at the beach, then you will certainly want to have a sand scoop. This useful tool allows you to shift through the sand and find metal quickly.
start metal detecting at the beach with a sand scoop.
Check out some popular sand scoop models here available from Amazon…
  • Metal Detecting Headphones – Most regular 1/4″ headphones will do, but a decent noise canceling headset will make a big difference if you are in a crowded park or beach. These headphones from Garrett are designed specifically for Metal Detecting.
  • Findings Bag – A convenient bag, or hip pouch to carry your pinpointer, sand scoop and of course your treasures! Bags like these are also convenient to carry water and snacks if you’ll be out detecting for hours.

Where can I go metal detecting?

When you first start metal detecting, it is important to know where you can (and can’t) go metal detecting. A few common spots that people go metal detecting is at local parks, old battlegrounds, churches beaches and their own property!

A few places that you cannot go metal detecting is at National Parks, someone else’s private property, and Native lands or burial sites. Digging or detecting at areas that are illegal to dig at could result in a felony charge and possible jail time. Be sure to check local laws before getting yourself into trouble!

If you are unsure if the area you’d like to go detecting will allow you to dig, check in with the local city hall or police department to get the go-ahead.

Is there metal detecting etiquette?

With any hobby that you pursue, there is typically etiquette to follow to ensure that you are respecting your community and other hobbyists. Metal detecting is no exception. If you are detecting at a park or a beach, you should respect the personal space of others. Don’t go too close to people enjoying a picnic at the park.

If you find something of value near a group of people, you should check in with them and see if it belongs to them.

If you get to a beach and there is someone else there with a metal detector, you should respect their space. You can still go detecting, but maybe go down the beach a ways to respect their hunt! Don’t be scared, go talk to them and socialize!

man metal detecting on the beach

Metal Detecting Tips

If you are just starting metal detecting as a hobby, there are a few final tips that you should keep in mind!

  • Be conscious of where you dig (avoid others, stay in legal areas)
  • Follow Leave No Trace Principles
  • Avoid high traffic times and areas
  • Buy the best metal detector you can afford. The better the metal detector, the better your chances of finding valuable items!
  • Go Hunting after the rain.

Recommended Links

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