Metal Detecting Tips: The Location

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I’ve been metal detecting for many years now and I’ve learned a lot of metal detecting tips through the years. My father had a machine in my hand as soon as I could walk and he had one of the first machines in Kansas City, Missouri in the early 1960’s.

Most of these metal detecting tips I can give you are well tested and have thoroughly been used, developed over many years of trial and error. Hopefully the metal detecting tips you learn here and in some of my other posts will save you a little time and a lot of sweat. Again however, you will develop your own style and method that best works for you and eventually you will have your own palette of metal detecting tips. Just like a good artist.

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Lets us start today with some metal detecting tips about location. Just as in real estate, the three most important things is location, location, location. I say this because no matter how good you are or the detector is your using, if nothing is there to find, well, you won’t find anything. I’ve spent many a day out in the hot sun just knowing I’ve found a great place to go treasure hunting. Only to find out, after hours of nothing but trash signals, my “great place” was nothing more than a bad idea.

Here are some metal detecting tips that will ensure you find that “great place”.

We all went to school, so did our brothers, sisters, parents and so on. If you are from a small town like me you probably know just what school they attended. Schools are great places to find treasure. Kids are notorious for losing things, all kinds of things. From pocket knives to pocket watches, coins to toy cars. The school yard and playground are great places to search.

Your Grandfathers schoolyard and playground were not asphault. Back then it was dirt and grass, maybe even your Fathers school was the same way. I know growing up my school had both asphault, grass and plenty of sand. I personally remember losing my extra milk money, during gym class, outside on the soccer field before lunch, many times. I was not the only one. Lots of girls lost jewelry too, upset because that was the necklace, bracelet, or ring that Grandmom had given her. The very one Grandmom used to wear to school, when she was her age.

Get where I’m going here? I’ve had many people say to me “what do little kids have, besides fifteen cents for milk money, I’m not wasting my time on that elementary school yard”. I would agree with them and go about my business. Want to know how much silver I’ve found in elementary school yards? And yes, a whole bunch of pennies, nickels, and dimes. Good metal detecting tips are really thinking outside the box. The box everybody else can get stuck in.

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A Milk Coin pre-1990’s, a collectable ‘token’ of history

That is just some advice for elementary schools, I’ve got plenty more metal detecting tips for Junior High School and High School. You might think this not relevent because we don’t have Junior high schools or whatever anymore, well, the school might not be there anymore, however the land still is. I’ve metal detected many a vacant lot or empty space to find more than I ever thought I would.

Another great metal detecting location is Churches. One of my personal favorite spots to go detecting. This is really a no brainer for the seasoned detectorist. What has been around the longest in most communities, small towns and sometimes just in the middle of nowhere? Yes, you guessed it, Churches.

They were the early communities meeting spot. The gathering place. It’s called a congregation for a reason. It’s where people congregate. What happens when people congregate? They lose things, personal things.

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Congregation of New Providence Predestenarian Baptist Church – Circa 1908

All good Christians tithe (give money). It’s what the Church relies upon to keep operating. When people go to Church they carry money. They have for centuries. This makes Churches one of the best spots for treasure hunting. Think also of all the fundraising functions that churches have going on. There’s always the cook out, ice cream socials, weddings, garage sale for the organ fund, ect.

Again, early churches didn’t have asphalt parking lots, it was grass. Early churches were also the schools that the communities sent their children to. The Church yard has served many purposes over the years and that’s what the treasure hunter is looking for.

One of the best days I ever had metal detecting was at a Catholic Church in down town Kansas City Missouri. My Father knew one of the Bishops. He drove down there with me and a friend of his, so there was three of us. The Church was very old and had a large iron fence all the way around the Church and the grounds. We kinda loitered around until my Father saw his friend and asked if we could have permission to come inside and coin hunt with our metal detectors. He said yes, and we where in.

dig every signal you get and close the hole up, real good, so it doesn’t look like you dug there

Now my Father gave us directions on what to do. I thought this humorous because I knew what to do. However, he made it real clear, dig every signal you get and close the hole up, real good, so it doesn’t look like you dug there. As soon as I turned on my detector and set the search coil on the ground,”BEEP” I got a signal. That’s strange I thought. So I moved the search coil around and “BEEP”, “BEEP”, “BEEP”. I turned back to look at my Father, and he just smiled.

Needless to say, it was a story out of a treasure book. You couldn’t move the search coil without getting a signal. Nearly every signal a coin, mostly dimes, mostly pre 1965 silver dimes. I had both my front pockets full and was working on the back ones when Dad said it was time to go. He didn’t want to stay too long. I remember seeing his Bishop friend and Dad giving him some money.

We regrouped and Dad made sure we were respectful and covered over our holes. We all had a good conversation home, comparing our stories. I found $1.10 in dimes in one hole. Dad said they call that a “glory hole”. My Father finally told us that the Church used to have a lot of large ice cream socials in the 50s, and nobody could get in there to metal detect it. He was the first ever to get in there with a metal detector. It was a day I’ll never forget. Only one other time did I experience such overwelming success, and that was at a local swimming pool called Sun & Surf. That’s another story for another day.

A bad day metal detecting beats any good day at work

I hope this post has given you a few good metal detecting tips for finding locations in the future. I have many more good places and ideas to treasure hunt. Like I said I’ve been doing this for a long time. I know the good spots and the bad spots. I however, never look at any spot as bad. As long as I’m in the sunshine on a beautiful day getting some exercise it’s a good spot. I always said, A bad day metal detecting beats any good day at work.

Until later, Good Digging!

Comments(4)
  1. Felicia Comrade
    • John Brunelle
  2. Josh Robbins

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