MetalDetector.com Blog

Father’s Day Gifts are HERE: at MetalDetector.com!

metal detectors for dad on Father's Day

Give your husband, son, grandfather or any dad on your list a metal detector for Father’s Day.

Father’s Day 2017 is coming! Do you need a GREAT gift for Dad or Grandpa to show them how much they’re appreciated? MetalDetector.com has you covered—on any budget, large or small. A new metal detector is a gift ANY Dad would love (and brag about!) Decent entry-level models start at around $150; and mid-range units start at around $400. If Dad (or Grandpa) already has a metal detector, accessories are ALWAYS appreciated! We have listed popular metal detecting accessories below. Gift certificates are also among Dad’s favorites! MetalDetector.com gift cards range from $25–$1,000, so Dad can pick out what he really wants, and YOU can spend the amount you’re comfortable with.

Metal Detecting Accessory Gifts

Pinpointers and digging tools are probably the best-selling detecting accessories, followed by beach scoops and “finds” pouches. If Dad needs a pinpointer, this is an affordable Father’s Day gift he’ll love.

  • Check out our best-selling Pinpointers.  *100% Best Price Guarantee!
  • MetalDetector.com Gift Certificates are a GREAT last-minute gift idea because they are emailed to your recipient with a gift message or emailed to you, for in person gift giving!

Best-Selling Entry- and Mid-Level Metal Detectors:

Celebrate Father’s Day in style and wish him the best from all of us at MetalDetector.com!

Old Coins are Hiding, and YOU Can Find Them!

1921 Silver Dollar found with a metal detector.

1921 Silver Dollar found with a metal detector.

Detectorists who focus on hunting coins (“coin shooters”) are on a quest for older, more valuable coins. Some hobbyists display their own collection and others sell coins for a profit. What distinguishes an “old” coin from a newer clad coin? It’s their silver content. According to the American Rare Coin website, “Roosevelt and Mercury Dimes, Washington Quarters, and Walking Liberty Franklin and Kennedy Half-Dollars minted in 1964 and earlier are 90% silver.”  All dimes and quarters minted after 1964 are not made with silver. Newer coins are made of an alloy, or a mixture of metals.

Experts say that success in finding older coins depends on your creativity in finding the right hunting spots. Scouting out a unique location is very significant. For example, parks, beaches and music venues will often yield new coins, but if you are searching for Mercury dimes, Morgan silver dollars or centuries-old $5 gold pieces, you’ll need a great spot! Researching historical records will give you clues about past locations that are worth exploring.

Experienced Coin Hunters Weigh in on Where to Find Old Coins

Avid coin hunters love to share their success stories. And in detecting forums, they give advice to new hobbyists and coin hunters!

Bob from Illinois offers this BRILLIANT tip:

  • “Talk to anyone over 60 years old. Ask them where they played when they were kids. They were growing up before 1964. Ask where the swimming hole was, the shortcuts to school, and if that school that was torn down? Inquire about older parks and fair grounds. Do they know areas that are overgrown now that were homes in the past? I have gained many silvers this way!”

Marty from Georgia says:

  • “All my old coins have come from private property. When I’m searching, I think of where people would chill scores of years ago. A/C wasn’t affordable “back in the day.” Shade trees and the Southern edges of property lines with trees are the best. Try thinking like a 130 year old!

‘Coin Guy’ has this advice:

  • “Old houses. I knock on the door and ask. 7 out of 10 property owners say yes. Be friendly and you can have old silver coins in your pocket. At one old house that was already searched, I found a 1904 dime and 5 Indian-  plus several Wheaties.”

Interested in a metal detector that will find old coins? Please read our Learning Library article, “What are the Best Metal Detectors for Finding Coins?” to help you make the best selection!

Warmer Weather is Here! Consider Shallow Water Treasure Hunting

Shallow water metal detecting.

Shallow water metal detecting with the Garrett AT Pro waterproof metal detector.

Are you an ambitious treasure hunter? If so, you’re probably not afraid to get your feet wet. It’s almost time to hit the beach, and shallow-water metal detecting can pay dividends!  One of the major bonuses of shallow-water hunting is that the treasures are usually in good shape on the ocean or lake floor. Also, underwater treasures are known to be found right where they’re dropped. (That’s not always true because of the tide.) Regardless, there are coins, trinkets and gold jewelry beneath the wet sand.

How Deep is Shallow Water?

This is subjective, as some detectorists only want to search from the high water mark to a few inches deep. If you know you’re staying in water that is only a few inches deep, a detector with a waterproof search coil will work fine. Here some VERY affordable models with a waterproof search coil (not housing):

Wading and Snorkeling

If you plan on wading in knee-deep water up to ten-feet deep, then you’ll need a completely waterproof detector. Submersible metal detectors can be used for snorkeling and scuba detecting, too. So, once you become expert at shallow-water detecting, you can graduate to the next levels. Many water detectors are equally proficient at land detecting, so they are the perfect investment for the enthusiastic hobbyist. Listed below are some popular waterproof metal detectors.

(Note: some are waterproof to much further depths than others):

Whether you are shallow-water hunting in the ocean, lake or the river, there is a wealth of treasure to be found! Some detectors are better suited for the saltwater beach than others. However, newer models often have a “beach mode” setting that will cancel the effects of most to all saltwater mineralization. For more information about the best beach and shallow-water metal detectors, be sure to read our Learning Library article: “What are the Best Metal Detectors for Metal Detecting on the Beach?”

Look for an upcoming blog post about underwater treasure-hunting techniques.

Relic Hunting: Tips for Detecting at Old Homesteads, Farms and Historical Homes

"The Marshall House" which was used by the British as a field hospital.

“The Marshall House” which was used by the British as a field hospital.

With warmer weather here (and better ground conditions), the thrill of treasure hunting beckons! If you’ve already hunted local parks, beaches and public venues in your neighborhood, it’s probably time for more advanced metal detecting. Over time, many detectorists start to realize that detecting on older private properties is where the REAL ACTION is! More old coins and excellent relics are found in private yards than anywhere else.  This is largely due to the fact that few people (if any) have ever swung a metal detector on this territory. It’s important to know the history of your area before deciding where to hunt and what you’re searching for. Do you live in a region where the Civil War was fought or where the first colonies once were? If so, you’re in ideal relic hunting territory.

Politely Ask Permission to Hunt Someone’s Private Property

There are some favorable tactics for gaining permission to hunt on private property. And in an upcoming article, we will fill you in on some of these “best practices.” But in a nutshell, it helps to explain to the home or landowner something on the order of: “I live here in town and I’m a  history buff. I appreciate older neighborhoods and properties such as this. My hobby is metal detecting, so I search for old relics in fields and old  properties. If something is interesting, I’ll be sure to show you; then offer it to a local historical society.” When you DO obtain permission to hunt, here are some tips for relic hunting success:  

  • Make sure you are good at plug cutting. You don’t want to tear up someone’s yard, field or farm!
  • Front yards were generally used a lot more than backyards. It’s best to detect the front before the backyard—specifically the  paths to and from the doors of the house.
  • Look for locations of the old out buildings. This includes sheds, barns, outhouses and wells. The paths to those areas where high traffic, with great old coin potential.
  • Get under the front porch, if possible. Lots of coins, old toys and other objects have likely slipped through the cracks. This was also a popular place for burying treasure.
  • If there are sidewalks, check along the grass edges. Coins and small objects land next to sidewalks and in the cracks.
  • Search under old trees on the property. People congregated in shady spots, also stashing items near roots.
  • Pay attention to clusters of trees, especially if they are in a row. These were usually intentionally planted years ago; it’s a good hint to check that area.
  • When you are done with the property, be sure to thank the landowner. If you had lots of luck there, consider giving the property owner a token of your appreciation.

Efficient relic hunting requires tools for careful digging and target retrieval. Many relic hunters swear by Lesche digging tools, as well as specialty shovels.

Related Articles:

What are the Best Digging Trowels and Shovels for Metal Detecting?

What are the Best Metal Detectors for Finding Relics?

Expert Tip: Under-Searched Sites Will Yield Relics

Silver Navajo Indian Bracelet with Coral Inlay found in New Mexico with a metal detector.

Silver Navajo Indian Bracelet with Coral Inlay found in New Mexico with a metal detector.

The BEST places to find relics and old coins are at pre-existing homesteads, old farmhouses and former soldiers’ camps or battle sites. Obviously, there are many more locations that will yield valuables and artifacts, but these are a few good examples. Metal detectorists always face the challenge of choosing sites that are already picked over. Don’t shy away from these locations, because it’s impossible that every relic and coin has already been recovered. However, if you really want to increase your chances of treasure hunting success, it’s a great idea to find virgin sites or those that are under-searched!

How to Scout Out an Untouched Metal Detecting Site

Detecting enthusiast and relic hunter, Brian Palmer, has a clever tip for interested hobbyists. Investigate for signs of old home sites. In colder months (in some states), it’s almost impossible to treasure hunt. But you can do online research and scan old maps. It’s much easier to scout out sites when the grass isn’t high—and you can also see further into the woods. Palmer and his wife scouted around in the winter and found a fallen tree along a stone wall where there were stones in the outline of a home’s foundation. When they came back to search the area, their detectors hit on a jackpot of treasure!

Popular Relic Finds with a Metal Detector

The Palmers’ finds at this former homestead in New York included five Civil War “Eagle buttons,” flat buttons, a knapsack hook and two 1863 Civil War tokens. These tokens were issued because coins were scarce during the Civil War, but they only circulated for one year. They are great pieces of history! On another hunt they scouted ahead of time, the Palmers’ uncovered a World War I German buckle from 1839, an 1840’s Federal Navy cuff button and an Indian Wars 1874 Pattern belt plate. These are all examples of items you can find when relic hunting. Keep looking for new places to search and/or ask for permission if necessary. You, too, will come across some amazing relics!

Recommended Relic Hunting Metal Detectors:

Entry Level Relic Metal Detectors:

Mid Level Relic Metal Detectors:

Premium Relic Metal Detectors:

Resource:   “Western & Eastern Treasures” Magazine

Want the Best Metal Detecting Locations? Check with a Real Estate Agent!

Local experts are able to point you to new sites to go metal detecting.

Local experts are able to point you to new sites to go metal detecting.

We always talk about doing site research before setting out with a metal detector. This is because you will be more informed about the area you’re searching and what you’re searching for. Before devoting time aimlessly swinging your detector, why not check the local library for historical information about your city? The librarian can direct you to the “town room,” or section of the library with historical maps, surveys and deeds. Then you can pinpoint the sites of old homesteads and municipal buildings. Detecting these locations gives you a better chance of finding relics and other treasure.

Get Leads & Detailed Information by Asking Real Estate Agents & Contractors!

Want to get really creative about finding great treasure spots?  Detectorist and author, Phil Goodson, Sr. suggests finding real estate agents in your area. Maybe you know of an agent. If  not, ask your friends and acquaintances for their real estate contacts. They have unlimited access to property information—both past and present—which is why they’re so knowledgeable about neighborhoods. Agents can tell you how old homes are in your area and even a homeowner’s name and address. This will be extremely helpful if you need to get permission to search the property. There’s a TON of detailed information that is open to the public, but most people don’t know how to get it.

Don’t forget contractors for “insider” information. Contractors know when and where digging and construction is happening. They can tell you when businesses and homes were built. And possibly most important, they know if the dirt was brought in from another location. If it’s dirt from an old homestead of farm, there’s your next search location!

MetalDetector.com Spring Sale on Metal Detectors 2017

Interested in getting a metal detector or upgrading to a newer model? Check out our exclusive 2017 Metal Detector Sale Offers!

How to Find More with Your Metal Detector – 5 Tips for Increasing the Number of Targets You Locate

Whenever you go treasure hunting with your metal detector the more targets you locate the better. Unfortunately, we all go through what we might call “dry spells”; periods where you just don’t find anything, and if you do get a hit, it’s trash. While most metal detectorists will say “Oh well, it’s still a lot of fun just to be out detecting” on trips that don’t yield any treasures, there’s no denying the excitement that comes along with hitting on a valuable target!

With that in mind, we’ve compiled a few tips to help you find more with your metal detector so you can enjoy fewer dry spells and many more trips filled with targets that turn out to be true treasures.

Use A Hand Held Pinpointer

The new XP Pinpointer known as the MI-6 features: Rechargeable battery, Submersible up to 20 feet, Connection via radio link to the DEUS and more!.

The MI-6 Pinpointer from XP Metal Detectors.

Probably one of the best tips we can give you to help you find more treasures with your metal detector is to use a pinpointer. Even if your metal detector offers a built in pinpointer having a hand held device can not only allow you to zero in on the targets your machine does find, but, once you dig up that initial target, a hand held pinpointer can often help you find even more in and around that first hole you dug.

Dig Beyond The Target Your Machine Found

As we mentioned above, digging beyond the first target your machine finds is another way to increase the number of treasures you’re able to locate with your metal detector whether you have a pinpointer or not. Usually, there isn’t just one civil war button, coin or gold nugget – there’s several – and if you keep digging (carefully) you’ll find them as well as your initial target.

Use Headphones

Headphones can help you find more targets with your metal detector by giving your ear the opportunity to hear all of the small changes in sound a target can make. Many of these slight changes in pitch can be missed w/the naked ear, especially if there is ambient noise. With headphones however these notifications from your machine are much less likely to be missed and, as a result, you’ll be able to locate more treasures. See all Headphones

Invest in Additional Search Coils

Most metal detectors come with a medium search coil as standard issue equipment.  Having search coils of varying size and/or configuration though is another way to increase the targets your metal detector finds. Each search coil is designed to search best in different situations. Having several on hand allows you to search as much of the ground as possible thereby resulting in more targets overall.

Do Your Research

While it’s fine to just go out metal detecting (as long as you have permission ) doing a bit of research before you head out can be very helpful. The more you know about the area the better you’ll be at finding good places to go treasure hunting. While the internet may come to mind first, the library and local town offices are excellent places to begin your research. Read more on researching new metal detecting sites

The more of these metal detecting tips you can apply during your treasure hunts, the more targets you’ll find. So, be sure to do whatever you can and increase the number of treasures you find with your metal detector easily.

Whites TM 808 Metal Detector- Find Coin Hoards & Treasure Caches!

Whites TM-808 Deep Seeking Two Box Metal Detector

Whites TM-808 Deep Seeking Two Box Metal Detector

Have you ever gotten a lead about a buried treasure cache’s whereabouts, but didn’t act on it? Perhaps it was hidden on several acres of farmland, and you figured it was an impossible mission. That’s when the Whites TM 808 Metal Detector, a deep-seeking two-box unit, is a priceless commodity! Coin and treasure cache burials were extremely popular in the past, and a large majority are still waiting to be discovered. These caches were buried during an emergency, for safe-keeping and even by outlaws.

Find Large Deeply Buried Treasure’s

Whites TM 808 is specially designed to detect larger objects and deeper metals—up to 20 feet deep! Professional features include: adjustable ground balance, powerful electronics, preset controls and easy tuning. Whites TM 808 is priced right and also detects septic tanks, pipes and relics.

 

See all models of Whites Metal Detectors

Spring Vacation – Bring Your Metal Detector!

What could be better than simply enjoying the sun and the sand while on vacation? Finding treasure of course!

What could be better than simply enjoying the sun and the sand while on vacation? Finding treasure with a metal detector of course!

Is your family getting ready for a Spring vacation? If so, don’t forget to pack your metal detector! Even if you already have activities planned, you can still sneak in a day trip for metal detecting. Treasure awaits anywhere your travels may take you—from battle sites (war relics), to beaches (where other vacationers lose valuables) to rumored buried treasure (Blackbeard’s stash in North Carolina). Just do an internet search about the lore and  history of your destination. There’s sure to be hotspots nearby!

Going to Florida? Several Beaches are Scattered with Treasure

Three-hundred years ago, many Spanish galleons and other ships sunk off  the coast of Florida. This was largely due to treacherous weather and attacks by enemy ships. Coins, jewels, gold and relics have since washed up, particularly along the east-central coast. Treasure hunters are STILL finding these valuables from the high-tide to the low-tide line and in shallow water. You can keep what you find on the beaches—but not on private property, federal land or any state parks. Metal detecting in Florida has become quite popular, as amateurs are finding priceless coins and treasure all the time! If you’re traveling near “Treasure Coast,” be sure to get in on the action. According to the “Visit Florida” website, popular detecting beaches include Vero Beach, Wabasso Beach, Melbourne Beach, Aquarina Beach and beaches near Fort Pierce. When detecting on saltwater beaches, pulse induction detectors are ideal because they cancel out the salt mineralization. For information on beach hunting metal detectors, check out:

Bring Your Underwater Detector to Tropical Destinations

Heading to Barbados, Cancun, the Virgin Islands or Costa Rica? Amazing underwater sightseeing awaits you! Scuba dive shipwrecks with your metal detector or snorkel in shallow water for ocean floor treasures. Shallow-water hunters often find pockets of treasure along the tide line, while scuba hunters uncover gold, coins and relics. What makes these foreign treasures remarkable is that you won’t find the same things in the U.S.!

Gold Prospecting with a Metal Detector- Signs Pointing to Gold

An example of gold that can be found with a metal detector. Located recently by a MetalDetector.com customer in New England.

An example of gold that can be found with a metal detector. Located recently by a MetalDetector.com customer in New England.

Spring is here! And gold season is quickly approaching… So, here are a few prospecting tips to get you excited and ready to strike gold! Luckily, there are geological clues that point to gold. Just like you can read the soil for indicators of metal treasure, you can look for visual evidence when gold prospecting. Where is gold found? Often, it  is found in low places; definitely on top of bedrock and in front of obstructions that prevent it from moving further. Gold that has accumulated as a result of moving downriver is called placer gold. However, placer gold is not just found in rivers, it also accumulates on dry ground in valleys and rock crevices. Placer gold is a popular target because it has concentrated over a long period of time and is fairly easy to find if you are in gold bearing country.

Five Indicators that Gold May be Present:

  1. Rock Types for Gold are Nearby: If a certain rock type is known to be productive for gold in one zone, and the same rock type exists nearby, this is a good place to search.
  2. Lighter Colored Rocks: If you notice out-of-place colors in a group of rock formations, it can be a gold indicator. Acidic mineral solutions in gold areas can bleach the rocks to a lighter color.
  3. Presence of Quartz: Quartz is a common indicator that gold MAY be nearby. This is not always true. The hydrothermal conditions needed for gold deposits are also right for quartz. Quartz is more plentiful—so most gold deposits contain quartz, but most quartz deposits do not contain gold.
  4. Coexisting Rock Types: Most gold ores (and placer gold) contain small amounts of silver, copper, iron, garnet other minerals. These favorable host rocks can be important when determining gold prospecting zones.
  5. Abrupt Geological Shifts: Hard rock gold deposits are known to occur at the contact of two different types of rock. Example: one zone in New Mexico has rich dry placers; then just down the road is coal-bearing country. Not far from there is a turquoise mine. Detecting on the borderline of these zones can prove to be lucrative.

These are just a few tips. Reading gold prospecting books and articles can REALLY point you in the right direction! Check out our Learning Library for gold prospecting advice and our favorite gold-prospecting metal detectors!

Articles on our Best Gold Metal Detectors: