I’m back from the beach! And let me tell you, I feel like I’ve been transported back into 1992 again (aka 6th grade). By that I mean I went metal detecting! Twice! And I actually found something of value! It might have been only $2.12 worth, but nonetheless it was AWESOME. And contrary to popular belief, all the cool kids are doing it ;)
Have any of you guys tried it before? It may sound nerdy as hell, but I gotta tell you – it’s really exciting. The idea that you could be standing on top of piles of gold coins or diamond rings? Total hotness. In fact, someone literally JUST found $5 million in Roman coins this week! Off a regular ol’ metal detector! (Okay, well maybe it was a higher end one I’m not sure, but still – any detector would have picked it up.) Not something you see every day, that’s for sure. But at least it proves it’s do-able ;) And his words on the sport sums up the love for the game perfectly:
“The joy of metal detecting is that you never know what you will find.”
I couldn’t agree more. It’s like turning on a “hope machine” every time you step out and give it a shot! The possibilities of what you can find are endless. Also like lottery tickets, only it’s free (once you have the equipment) and the odds are much better that you come back with something of substance ;) Even if it is a handful of pennies.
So why should you care? Well, maybe you won’t I don’t know. But the more I started typing this out and thinking about it, the more I wanted to share all this with you in hopes you find it equally exciting :) If you’re interest is piqued, continue reading! If not, click away and move on to your next favorite blog. Or use this knowledge to form your next Halloween costume! (“Beer Detector” anyone?)
Metal detecting 101 starts right….NOW.
What exactly IS metal detecting?
You know those old white guys who scour the beach scaring little kids with a long metal stick that beeps? Those are metal detectors :) And what they’re doing is looking for gold. Or Rolexes as my dad likes to say. But what they usually come up with is handful of bottle caps and an assortment of coins. Quarters if they’re REALLY good. And all it entails is basically swinging/swaying these detectors back and forth over the sand or dirt until you’re happily notified there’s metal beneath you. Then, you cross your fingers and dig!
Where do you metal detect? What can you find?
On beaches (usually in the early evening after all your beach-goers have gone for the day, leaving all their goodies behind), forests, deserts, mountains, underwater, pretty much anywhere – all depending on what exactly you’re trying to find, and how much time you have to do so ;)
As a kid, I used to actually go in my backyard! We lived on an old Civil War campground at one point and I’d literally go searching for bullets and swords and the like. I never came up with the latter (although I’ve heard stories of friends who have), but I’ve def. found my fair share of buttons and belt buckles – one time even finding a rare one worth over $700! – and a plethora of other things once worn by our fellow soldiers. Pretty damn awesome in my books.
Then, of course, you’ve got the treasure hunters who search for sunken ships and lost chests and booty (that’s what she said)! I call them the “all or nothing” types. You’re either gonna hit it BIG and become an instant millionaire, or you’ll slowly drain your savings but continue searching with all the hope in the world.
Oh yeah, there are also metal detectors who are actually trying to find something in particular and NOT get rich off of it ;) Say, historians and the like. Not as sexy as striking gold for one’s one benefit, but equally as exciting. And you probably get paid to do it for a living too!
Other things one might find: Coins, rings, trash, gold, silver, bottle caps, watches, nails, cannons, swords, bullets, more trash, jewelry, antiques, and anything else that contains metal. The more expensive detector you have, the more crap you can usually avoid (something about the sound waves being able to tell the nature of the item under your foot)
Metal detecting resources
I actually had to research this one from the start as the internet wasn’t even around back in my metal detecting days ;) And man, there’s a lot of good stuff online! I found metal detecting clubs – like, groups of people who get together and go detecting, and then come back and share their findings and swap stories – magazines, online forums, blogs! and pretty much anything else a hobby consists of. Here are some of the more interesting links I came across:
- Metal detecting tips
- Metal detecting blogs
- The metal detecting forum
- List of metal detecting clubs (in the U.S. and world!)
- Costs of metal detectors (Amazon)
- Books on metal detecting (Amazon)
There you have it – Metal Detecting 101! It may not make you the next millionaire, but you’ll sure as hell have fun trying. See ya on the beaches, pimps.
PS: Some of my favorite tools:
|Personal Capital (FREE) -- If you’re looking for a robust financial tracker, Personal Capital is the way to go! They’re like Mint, but on steroids and have much better tools for investment and net worth tracking. // Full review|
|Digit (FREE) -- A super easy (and automated) way to save. Every day Digit analyzes your income and expenses and will push money aside for you any time it sees extra sitting there. I've saved over $4,000 myself using them so far! // Full review|
|Acorns -- Having trouble finding money to invest? Check out Acorns – they round up all your transactions to the nearest $1.00 and drops the difference into an investment portfolio for you. Easy way to start investing! // Full review|