The Thrill Of The Hunt: A Beginner’s Guide To Metal Detecting

If you’re just learning about metal detecting, it can be a little daunting. There are so many machines and accessories to choose from, and there’s so much information out there it’s tempting to give up before you’ve even started. 

Metal detecting is a hobby that involves using a metal detector to search for metal objects buried in the ground.
Before you start metal detecting, it’s important to research the local laws and regulations in your area.
As a beginner, it’s best to choose a metal detector that is easy to use and has basic features.
The best places to go metal detecting include parks, beaches, and other public areas where people gather.
If you find something valuable while metal detecting, it’s important to follow local laws and regulations regarding reporting and claiming lost or abandoned property.

But don’t worry! We’re here to help get you started on your new hobby with this beginner’s guide to metal detecting.

Know The Rules

Research the area where you’ll be hunting. This can be as easy as checking a map and seeing how many parks, historical sites, and cemeteries are nearby. 

If there are any restrictions or laws pertaining to metal detecting in your area of interest, it is best to get familiar with them before beginning your hunt.

Know the rules for metal detecting in your area of interest. While some states have no particular rules regarding metal detecting on public land and private property (other than trespassing laws), others have quite specific regulations about what types of metals may be removed from certain areas and even require permits for those wishing to pursue this hobby commercially or professionally (with exceptions made for certified professionals).

Find out about any laws pertaining to digging on public property before setting up camp at an abandoned site filled with buried treasure just waiting for someone like yourself to uncover!

How To Metal Detect || The Complete Beginners Guide

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Try A Borrowed Detector Before You Buy

If you’re considering purchasing a metal detector, one of the best things you can do is to try out someone else’s. 

Whether your friend or family member has one that they aren’t using and are willing to let you borrow, or if there’s a local club (or even an online forum) with which you can meet others who own metal detectors, give it a shot.

You won’t know how much fun metal detecting is until you finally get into the field yourself and start finding coins, jewelry and other treasures!

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Find A Metal Detecting Group

One of the best ways to improve your metal detecting skills is through others. You can learn a lot from other people’s experiences, because everyone has different strengths and weaknesses. If you are new to metal detecting, it is important that you find a group that shares similar interests as you do.

If you want to find a group, there are a few things that you need to consider:

Are they local? This might seem like an obvious question but I have made this mistake in the past by joining an online community before finding out where their meetings were located. 

It may seem like it won’t be hard for them to meet up when they live near each other but there could be unforeseen circumstances such as bad weather or illness that would prevent them from attending meetings regularly. Make sure that the time spent doing this activity is worth your while!

What kind of background knowledge do they have? While there is no right way to approach metal detecting (more on this later), it will help if everyone has some common knowledge before starting off together so everyone knows what they should expect when searching for treasure in foreign objects around us every day!

Consider Your Equipment Needs

With your metal detector, consider the following:

What kind of detector do you need? There are many types available, including those that search for coins and jewelry as well as relics such as old tools. For beginners, it’s best to start with a coin-and-jewelry machine that comes with an all-metal mode. 

This allows you to scan for metals without worrying about interference from other items. However, if you’re interested in finding old coins or other objects that are made from nonferrous materials (materials not containing iron), then look into getting a relic machine instead.

How much money do you want to spend? Generally speaking, the more expensive the item is including its accessories the better quality it will be. If budget isn’t an issue for you right now then go ahead and splurge on yourself! 

You’ll have fun using this new hobby even if it means spending some extra time doing research online before making an investment in equipment or learning how everything works together once everything arrives at your doorstep.

Do I have enough time? Metal detecting can take anywhere between 15 minutes up until several hours depending on where exactly one wants their treasures found; however if there’s somewhere special needing exploration then more often than not people tend towards longer periods than usual because when exploring new places there’s always something else exciting waiting around each bend in life’s path.

“Metal detecting can uncover fascinating pieces of history and artifacts that have long been forgotten. Check out our article on the fascinating finds made with metal detectors to learn about some of the most interesting discoveries made with metal detectors around the world.”

Make Sure It’s Legal To Hunt In The Area You Want To Explore

Before setting out, make sure it’s legal to hunt in the area you want to explore. Some areas are off-limits for various reasons for example, some are protected from hunting by law. If you’re not sure about local regulations or permissions, contact your state or local government department of natural resources.

If it turns out that metal detecting on your land isn’t allowed either by law or policy, don’t try sneaking around and digging up things anyway (this is illegal). Your best bet is probably just finding another plot of land where it would be appropriate for someone like yourself to hunt with a metal detector.

If hunting with a metal detector seems like something worth doing on your property and there aren’t any clear-cut laws against it yet (or if there are but they don’t apply), then go ahead! 

Just make sure you have all the right permits you’ll need them if anyone wants proof that you’re allowed on their property at all times while doing so (and who knows what kind of trouble might come up later if they ever question this?).

Don’t Expect To Get Rich Quickly

To be clear, metal detectorists don’t make their living by finding gold nuggets and silver coins. If you’re going to get into this hobby in the hopes of striking it rich with unlimited wealth, well, I have some bad news for you: You’re not going to find anything like that happening. What’s more likely is that you may find some coins worth a few dollars at best or maybe even nothing at all.

That said, if your primary goal is simply enjoyment in its purest form, a chance to hunt treasure while enjoying time outdoors then metal detecting offers an excellent opportunity for just that.

“If you want to improve your metal detecting success, it’s important to have a strategy and know what to look for. Our article on 10 tips for successful metal detecting offers practical advice for finding more treasure on your next hunt.”

Wear The Right Clothing

There are a few things to keep in mind when dressing for your hunt. First, you should wear long pants and sleeves, not shorts and short sleeves. Metal detecting is a very dirty job if you’re doing it right, so it’s important to protect yourself from scrapes and scratches. 

Second, good shoes are absolutely essential you want sturdy boots that will protect your feet from sharp rocks while also giving them some traction on the ground.

Finally, bring along a hat and sunscreen; while metal detecting can be fun and exciting work (not to mention an excellent opportunity for exercise), it can also be hot!

Be Prepared For All Types Of Terrain

While you may be able to metal detect on your own property, there are many reasons why you should consider joining a metal detecting club. 

While clubs can be an excellent way to get started in metal detecting, they also provide an opportunity for new members to learn from more experienced detectorists. 

Joining a club will help ensure that as you begin your hobby, you’ll have the knowledge and support necessary to enjoy its benefits while avoiding any possible pitfalls along the way.

As with any hobby involving nature and/or heavy machinery (excavation equipment), safety precautions must be taken seriously at all times.

 Before beginning any activity involving this sport or past time, it’s important for everyone involved – especially beginners – to have access both emergency services numbers as well as first aid kits nearby at all times during their excursions into nature’s wild places!

Invest In Accessories For Your Detector

You should have a pinpointer, digging tool, coil cover and backpack. The best metal detectors come with these accessories but if your new detector doesn’t include them then you should consider investing in them separately. 

A good pair of boots will help you to stay comfortable while you hunt for treasures and they also protect your feet from sharp objects such as broken glass or rusty nails that may be lying on the ground. 

A metal detector bag is also recommended because it can carry all of your equipment safely when needed.

Read, Listen And Learn As Much As Possible About Metal Detecting

In addition to watching and listening, you can learn a lot from books, articles and blogs. Seek out information from other metal detectorists and clubs in your area. 

They will have a wealth of knowledge that can help you hone your skills and make the most of your time in the field.

If you are interested in a specific topic – whether it be history or geology – read about it online or at the library. You may even decide to dig up some primary sources for yourself!

Finally, learn as much as possible about the history of your chosen area before beginning your search for treasure. 

This will help you understand what might have been lost by previous occupants over many years (or even centuries) of use while also providing guidance on where best to focus our efforts when searching for lost items with our detectors today!

Have Good Manners When Hunting On Someone Else’s Property

A good metal detectorist always asks permission before he or she hunts on someone else’s property. 

The polite thing to do is call the landowner and ask for permission, but even if you can’t make contact with them, it’s still common courtesy to leave a note near where you plan to start your search or hang some sort of flag from a nearby tree. It never hurts to be over-prepared!

When asking for access, be prepared to pay a fee or donation if the owner allows you onto his or her land. Make sure that any payment is fair and proportional you don’t want an unproductive day hunting because your pockets are empty after paying for access! 

And remember: no matter what kind of relationship you have with your neighbors and other local residents, respect their privacy. 

They may not let you hunt on their property if they feel that their lives would be disrupted by having strangers traipsing through their land all day long (and night).

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Research Local History And Geography

As a metal detectorist, you will be spending a lot of time outdoors and away from home. When you are searching for good places to look for treasure, it is essential that you know the area well. If you don’t know where people have been digging before, there’s no way that you can find anything they missed.

The first step in researching your chosen location is to look at old maps and other historical documents such as census records and newspaper articles. 

Look at aerial photographs too if they’re available they can tell you a lot about how an area has changed over time.

Ideally, these sources should give some indication of what might be buried within the ground where your ancestors once lived or worked (for example: farmland).

You should also consider what kind of geology exists where these activities took place (such as limestone or clay), because this will affect which metals are more likely to have been buried there by people who lived nearby and therefore which ones could still remain today!

Start With A Beginner’s Machine

Generally, it’s best to start with a beginner’s machine. This will give you the opportunity to get used to using a metal detector without spending too much money. 

And once you’ve found your footing and are ready for more advanced equipment you can always upgrade.

However, if you have some cash to burn and want the best of the best right away, it may be worth investing in an expensive professional-grade unit from the get-go. You might also consider buying a kit or package that includes all of your accessories at once so that everything is ready when you are (and saves time).

The main thing we suggest looking out for is high sensitivity; this means that your new acquisition will be good at finding small objects like coins and jewelry as well as larger targets like relics and weapons.

Carry A Camera And A Notebook With You At All Times

Remember when you first started metal detecting? You would find the coolest stuff, but then forget where exactly it was found. This can be problematic if you want to go back and dig up more of that spot in the future.

There are a few ways around this problem:

  • Use a camera to take pictures of everything you find so that you’ll know where they were found later on.
  • Use your notebook as an official record of what’s been found and where it was located in relation to other finds or landmarks nearby. This will allow for easier identification if needed later on down the road (and trust us – it will).

You should also keep track of dates, locations, dimensions and other details about each item so that it’s easy for someone else who might want some information about what has already been discovered with regard to metal detecting at different sites throughout their area(s) such as parks or cemeteries among others.”


Well there you have it, the ultimate guide to getting started in metal detecting. I really hope this helped you out and inspired you to get out there and start digging!

Further Reading

The Beginner’s Guide to Metal Detecting: This comprehensive guide covers everything from selecting the right metal detector to finding the best locations to detect.

The Beginner’s Guide: The National Council for Metal Detecting offers a beginner’s guide that covers the basics of metal detecting, including equipment, permissions, and the law.

Metal Detecting Beginner Guide: This guide provides tips for beginners on metal detecting, including equipment, techniques, and finding locations.


What is metal detecting?

Metal detecting is a hobby that involves using a metal detector to search for metal objects buried in the ground.

Do I need a permit to go metal detecting?

In some areas, you may need a permit to go metal detecting. It’s important to research the local laws and regulations in your area before you start detecting.

What kind of metal detector should I buy as a beginner?

As a beginner, it’s best to choose a metal detector that is easy to use and has basic features. Look for models that are lightweight and have adjustable sensitivity and discrimination.

Where are the best places to go metal detecting?

The best places to go metal detecting include parks, beaches, and other public areas where people gather. You can also search for private property with the owner’s permission.

What should I do if I find something valuable while metal detecting?

If you find something valuable while metal detecting, it’s important to follow local laws and regulations regarding reporting and claiming lost or abandoned property. In some cases, you may be required to turn over the item to authorities.