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Metal Detectors


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I never have had a time geocaching when I needed one. Also, a lot of caches and contents are non-metallic. But to each his own. Far be it from me to ruin a man's well crafted sells pitch to his wife.


A couple of days ago I was looking for a cache when I struck up a conversation with an elderly man you was checking the nearby trail with a metal detector. He said that he checked the same trail regularly and the only thing he ever found was a buffalo nickel a year ago. After he left I hid all the change I had along the trail. Oh, the cache I was looking for was all plastic and paper.

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One thing I wanted to point out is that one of the biggest misconceptions about geocaching is that we bury stuff. Land managers think we dig holes all over the land placing and looking for caches, when we all know that this doesn't happen.


Carrying a metal detector around when caching has the possibility to perpetuate this myth.


This doesn't mean you can't do it, but it means that you should carry some extra caution to be sure not to give people the wrong idea.



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I've seen people with metal detectors goin through picnic areas and playgrounds after a summer weekend. Who knows what people lose out of their pockets while out there?

Since a lot of caches are in parks that are multi-use like this, your husband's idea makes sense. You guys go to a park, he does his treasure hunt while you do yours.

You might want to get a set of radios to keep in touch with each other.

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I've always wanted to give that a try also but haven't due to peer pressure. Everyone said I'd look like the old men on the beach picking up loose change. I get enough strange reactions from this hobby, maybe I'll hold off on the metal detector until I retire.

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Funny you should mention this my husband and I had the same discusion last week. Ours started because while out gardening I lost my wedding ring in the garden. We were going to rent one to search for it. But after talking about how cool it would be to use it on the beach ect we decided to go ahead and purchase one. As an after thought we decided we would take it caching with us. This was after discovering I had lost a lazer pointer keychain the last time we were caching and thought we might discover other treasures that people had lost while out tromping throught the woods. We had no thoughts of using it ot find the actual cache. But who knows. Good luck finding one, when we went to look for one all we could find is one for 500 (a tad bit more than what we wanted to spend) or one for 40 (it looked like a childs toy). We ended up ordering one for 200 from the internet. We are awating its arivail. We will let you know how it comes out.

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There are some very capable metal detectors in the $200 to $$300 range. I have been metal detecting for many years and have one of the high end White's units. I haven't used it much lately but I've been getting the itch again. Recently while looking for a place to hide a cache in a local regional park we were off trail climbing a steep hill and I found a silver dime sitting on the surface about half way up the hill. This got my interest and I scraped around a bit but didn't find anything else. I'm thinking I gotta go back with my detector though. But dummy me forgot to actually mark the spot with my GPS! Seems to me that everybody has an interest in metal detecting but only a few are brave enough to not worry what others think! I say go for it before you become an "Old Man"!

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And one more bit of advice...don't buy one of those cheapies from Radio Shack, Harbor Freight, Costco, etc. You will only regret it because you won't find anything! Buy a $200 model from White's, Fisher, Garrett etc. My brother bought a Radio Shack unit and searched his yard and found nothing, my son went over there with his White's Classic II and my brother announced that my son wouldn't find anything, well my son promptly found over 70 coins! That should tell you something!

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Bounty Hunter is a known brand and should be good for learning with. Most 'die-hard' metal detectors use earphones for better luck. The earphones cut out a lot of sound and makes it easier to hear the faint beeps.


One word of caution though...DO NOT use it on land controlled by the Nat'l Park Service. They will most likely confiscate it if the catch you using it on THEIR land.


Metal detectors work well for locating some benchmarks that may be covered over with years of wind blown dust and debris.


Have fun with it.



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Well I'm not real familiar with the Bounty Hunter brand but if it's in the $150 to $250 range it should be ok. Funny thing happened today. My father called this evening, seems he lost his large gold ring while gardening today. Tomorrow the treasure hunt begins! Hope I can find it. I will report back...stay tuned.

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I've always wanted to give that a try also but haven't due to peer pressure. Everyone said I'd look like the old men on the beach picking up loose change. I get enough strange reactions from this hobby, maybe I'll hold off on the metal detector until I retire.

I used to metal detect for about two years and I have to tell you that I never got over that feeling of looking like a "Dork" while out in public. I've found some real cool stuff too. I think I'll get another one when our child gets old enough that way People will think I'm just being a "cool" dad doing stuff with his kid.

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I have only used a Compass (Magnum 420 - anyone have a manual they can send me?). It seems to work pretty good. If I tune it just right, it will ignore stuff like aluminum pull tabs.


Very first thing It beeped on, and I pulled out of the ground was a buffalo nickel. What a way to get you hooked!

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I have a Whites and it's a great little machine. Don't do cheap on a metal detector.


I used it looking for a cache for the first time today. A ammo box I hid was in a stump. The stump had been totally pulled apart and was now a huge pile. Like a bear went after it although I'm sure it was a cacher.


So I used the detector looking for the box and it wasn't there. I replaced it with plastic. Plastic containers aren't stolen as quickly as ammo boxes.

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Radio shack just rebadges major brand stuff so they should be fine if it's the top models.


For example, Radio Shack sells Motorola Spirit Business radios as their own brand. One could say not to buy Radio Shack radios and go with Motorola when in fact they are the same.


I think that some Radio Shack metal detectors are rebadged.


Now this is a Metal Detector!!! Don't buy cheapy $300 ones when you can buy this one :D:(:D

Edited by FlashMaster
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Metal detecting in my main hobby. I guess Im old enough I dont care if I look like a dork . I detect with my teenage daughter . We use Minelab units, a Sovereign & a Explorer. Either one of them will find stuff at about twice the depth of a Bounty Hunter. The Explorer is the best land unit available but is hard to learn and many give up before mastering it. The Sovereign is a much easier to use but some find it difficult to learn if coming from another brand. . Neither of these units are for for women or kids as they are heavy and will wear your arm out in a hurry. Here is a link to our detecting page K&k Check out the recovered items pages. The 1877 Indian Head sold on ebay for $494.98 . Somtimes looking a little dorky pays off.

I also have a page dedicated to modification to the Sovereign Sovereign Mods


A good place for information on all of the good detectors is findmall forums.


The Bounty Hunter will tell you if you like detecting or not & will find shallow stuff but if you want the deep old coins you will need a better unit . The Treasure Hunters Brand from Ebay is a mistake . Your best bet is to resell it before you take it out of the box. Its not nearly as good as even the Bounty Hunter. There is a much greater difference between different make & model metal detectors than there is on GPS units..If I couldnt have a Minelab Id get a Fisher CZ5 ,CZ7 or CZ70. You can pick up a good used Minelab Sovereign for about $300 . K

Edited by kPK Trackers
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I have been detecting for a year or so and before buying I researched the detectors for a long time. Finally settled on a White's MXT. Was a little pricey, but from my experience I have found it is a detector that is easy for first timers and should meet my needs for a long time without having to upgrade.

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I'm getting into benchmarks a bit more when the kid isn't going with me. I'll be taking along my el'cheapo Walmart detector so if I happen across one that's been covered up by years of falling leaves I can maybe still find it. I figure even the cheapest ones can find a 6" metal disc under a little debris.


Nick T

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Hubby has been metal detecting for at least 20 years and has always used White's metal detectors. He finds gold rings, silver coins and watches among other things. He may look a little funny out there on the beach with those big, black headphones on, but he doesn't look funny at all when he is standing in line at the bank, waiting to deposit the cash that he just got for selling those "finds!"


And, yes, metal detecting definitely compliments geocaching. They are definitely good cover when muggles are in the area. And sometimes, one leads to the other by default. I just researched some old foundations that I am planning to hide a cache in and found a passage in an 1888 book that describes the wealthy man who lived in that house. He was know to bury silver coins he received in trade. The book says he buried a whole chest of them not far from my house! So, we are charging up the batteries in both metal detectors AND the GPSr right now!

Edited by Goldfinch593
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:o Got to tell you the story of how we have gotten into this hobby of Caching.

We have done metal detecting for some years, in November of 2003 we were camped in the desert of S. Calif. Another family was camped down the road a peace.

In the after noon they came up towards us, one of the kids always looking in the palm of his hands. Come to find out it was a GPS and what ever they were looking for was in are camp area. They excused them self’s and started looking around are campsite.

They located the spot, but a flash flood had gone through this area month before and had covered it with quite a bit of sand.

I broke out a metal detector and found it under a foot of sand, (Ammo Box).

I said to myself “ these people don’t have a life” But they were most likely saying the same thing about me.

Needles to say I now have a new life of Geocaching.

And Bounty Hunter is a good detector to start with.

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I do both. I actually had a metal detector before a GPS.


The difference for me is I do geocaching with the kids (and sometimes my wife) while metal detecting is something I do by myself, though my kids sometimes look for me if I go to a playground or something (before they run off to play).


They both involve electronic gadgets and being in the outdoors. One you're looking for anything and the other you're looking for something specific. I have fun with both though I'm spending much more time geocaching then metal detecting lately though we're heading to NC the end of the month so it will be along for the ride.

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OK, at risk of hijacking the thread, since you guys are talking about different models, what's the best metal detector I can get for under $100? I'm not going to fork out $500 for a whites. I'm mostly interested in finding benchmarks that are buried, but I might try general "treasure" hunting.

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I've used a Bounty Hunter for several years and even though I look like a "dork" I've found many valuable coins and rings. I've thought about taking my metal detector along on some geocaches. Many are ammo boxes and a metal detector would work great. Several weeks ago I was FTF on a geocache that was buried under leaves and sticks. It took me about 30 mins of looking at night and I almost gave up because of the poor GPSr signal. If I had my metal detector I would have found it in no time. I've recently found geocaches in E.WA that one was a former army training center in WW2, and the other was a indian trading post from the 1800's. Both sites I was kicking myself for not bringing my detector. Geocaching has takem me to many historic homesteads and lands that would be great for metal detecting too. Now I need to figure out where I'm going to get the time to combine them both...... :lol:

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OK, at risk of hijacking the thread, since you guys are talking about different models, what's the best metal detector I can get for under $100?  I'm not going to fork out $500 for a whites.  I'm mostly interested in finding benchmarks that are buried, but I might try general "treasure" hunting.

I don't think you'll find a "good one" for under $100 but you'll find low end detectors that probably don't have much in the way of discrimination (eliminating pull tabs from setting off the detector as an example) or ones that go very deep.


I have a Land Ranger from Bounty Hunter that I bought used on eBay and I like it.


If all you're looking for is a big metal object not far under the ground, then maybe any inexpensive metal detector could work. I did a quick search at Walmart that carries Bounty Hunters and there's 2 under $100. Not sure if the $70 one would be great if you wanted to do more though, like searching on the beach, etc. http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product_lis...at=78781&path=0


Maybe look around on eBay, see what you can get used and ask here when you find something that you think you want to bid on.

Edited by Team DEMP
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