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Guide to Metal Detecting Header

In addition to industrial and medical uses, the modern metal detector also provides a wonderful and entertaining pastime for people of all ages. However, it is important to remember that it isn't a hobby without responsibility. For example, while hunting for hidden treasure with a metal detector, it's imperative to keep historical conservation in mind. Additionally, never disrupt an active archeological site and always return the environment to the way you found it. This includes filling holes back in, throwing away all trash, turning rocks back over and avoiding purposely damaging any native flora in your search efforts. The way hobbyists conduct themselves impacts the way society feels about metal detecting, which in turn influences the laws that govern the hobby.

History

Three Bronze Pots found by Metal Detector

The technology behind the modern metal detector was developed in the 1880's by a man named Heinrich Wilhelm Dove. However, it was not put into use until a century later. The primary drive behind developing such a tool was so that miners would be able to locate hidden ore deposits under the ground. Now, metal detectors are not only used for commercial mining operations, but also for industrial applications, like airports, as well as uncovering archaeological treasures by both professionals and hobbyists.


General Metal Detecting

Close Up of Metal Detector

A hobby-grade metal detector can be used for a variety of things ��� from hunting for coins and jewelry, to seeking out a good location to dig for gold. The coil design is the most significant part of the metal detector. Each device has three coils: two receivers and one transmitter. When the metal detector encounters an ore, it will emit a sound alerting the user that there is something buried beneath the ground.


Coin Shooting

Hoard of Ancient Gold Coins

Coin shooting is a term that describes the practice of looking for coins that are buried under the ground. A working knowledge of coin identification is necessary because some coins should not be cleaned; doing so will lower their value. On the other hand, there are just as many that increase in value with proper cleaning. While searching for valuable coins, it's important to observe local laws and guidelines. Some finds must be reported to the appropriate authorities because they have historical significance.


Prospecting

Small Gold Nugget

A metal detector is a common tool that many prospectors choose to carry. It significantly decreases the amount of time that it takes to find deposits of precious metals, which means more effort can be allocated to digging up the ore instead. Without a metal detector, it can take a very long time to find small nuggets and flakes, especially if the only tool available is a gold pan. Being able to identify precious metals in their raw form is another advantage to using a metal detector, which is useful if you don't know what color to look for.


Beach Hunting

Man Beachcombing with Metal Detector in Seattle

Combing the beach for treasures is a relaxing pastime that can yield all sorts of interesting finds ��� from lost glasses to valuable pieces of jewelry. It's very important to remain aware of the tide movements while beach hunting. In an effort to prevent potential accidents, never venture too far from the shoreline during low tide. There are two primary techniques that are used to search beaches for valuables: gridding and random searching. Gridding allows you to remain precise in your efforts, while random searching lets you cover more ground; both have their advantages and disadvantages.


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