What is Metal Detecting?

A metal detector is an electronic machine consisting of a coil (the part near the ground that is moved back and forth) that is connected to a type of indication device (located farther up on the handle) that detects variations in the ground that the detector is passed over. The coil senses variations caused by changes in mineralization of the soil and differences due to metallic objects imbedded in the ground. Metal items include coins, metal relics, jewelry, nails, horse tack, aluminum cans, etc. When the coil is passed over a metallic object in the ground, the electronic balance within the coil head is disturbed and a signal is sent to the indication device.

Metal detecting is a very rewarding hobby where the “finds” can be both valuable and exciting. Equipment costs to enter into the hobby can be kept to a minimal amount, or a person can go “off the deep end” and spend several hundred dollars if they want to purchase a top-of-the-line detector. There are many types of detectors available from many manufacturers and it is recommended that someone just starting in the hobby should contact a club or organization such as the Midwest Coinshooters and Historical Club to help them get started. Many Club members have an extra detector available, to lend to someone just starting, so that they can get a feel for whether they indeed will enjoy the hobby or not.

What are the “Finds of the Month”?

The Club encourages members and visitors to bring in their finds from the previous month to the meeting.  The top five finds receive a silver dime and bragging rights! Click here to see some of our past winners.

What are the “Theme” Meetings?

This is a chance for members and visitors to dig out the finds that they have a good story about for that month’s theme.  For example: It’s about the Derby could be anything from horse tack to a hat pin.  Be creative with the finds you bring in and you may win a silver dime!

Can the Club help me find a lost item?

Yes, as long as the item is metal.  Please contact Philip Newell at PhilipFinds@gmail.com to be connected to a member that can assist you with your recovery.

How Deep will a Detector Find Targets?

The answer is not an easy, straight forward one. The quality of the detector being used, coil size, target size, soil conditions, ground moisture. detectorist’s ability, and the time the target has been in the ground are all variables that come into play when trying to answer this question. In general, coins and relatively small targets can be found by most detectors up to six inches deep under most conditions. Others may even be found up to ten inches deep under the best of conditions. Lesser quality detectors may only find coins to a maximum of four inches. Since the skill of the person using the detector comes into play for finding deeper targets, it is imperative that the detectorist understand the operation and appropriate control settings for his machine and that the upmost of patience be used when metal detecting. Listening for the very faint signal, moving slowly and methodically, and digging most every signal will result in more finds and thus improve the chance of producing more finds that are of more value.

What Detector Should I Buy?

To determine which detector to buy when first getting into this hobby, one must establish a baseline and do some research up front. Are you serious about getting into the hobby? If so, you may want to start out with a more expensive machine. Of course, you must determine what can you afford to pay for a machine. If you start out with an inexpensive machine and have poor results with it, you will get discouraged and probably not stay with the hobby-thus you have wasted some money on a machine that ends up stored in a closet. Determine what sort of targets you want to find and do some research on the many detectors available that will typically find those targets. Don’t buy a machine designed to find coins and artifacts if you plan to look mostly for gold nuggets. Set a price in your mind that you can afford, and are willing to pay, and research detectors in that price range that have the features you desire. While there are many detectors on the market that will probably fall into both your price range and have the features you want, you should be able to narrow down your choices to just a couple of machines. Contact the various detector distributors and do some shopping around to find the best deal. These can be found on the internet and in advertisements in the treasure magazines. Place your order, and before you know it, your new machine will be in your hands and you will be studying the operation manual with building a