What are the Best Metal Detectors for Seniors and Retirees?

By Daniel Bernzweig

Most people work hard their whole lives so that one day, they’ll be able to retire and have time to themselves. No more waking up to an alarm clock every morning and reporting to work just to answer to a boss - no siree! Now they have all the time in the world to relax, read and enjoy hobbies. The funny thing is… I hear a lot of retirees say that a few months into retirement, they’re bored. They finished a few household projects and now there’s nothing left to do. Say what?! You can only golf in the summer? We’ve got news, retirees. You are the perfect candidate for a hobby that is fascinating, exhilarating and potentially lucrative - metal detecting! The hottest commodity a metal detecting hobbyist can have is time to dedicate to treasure hunting. Now that you have time, by all means—learn about all of the excitement that’s in store with a metal detector. Be sure to read our related article entitled “why metal detecting is perfect hobby for seniors” for some great tips on getting started.

Why Will You Love the Hobby of Treasure Hunting?

Healthy outdoor exercise and the thrill of finding treasure are just two benefits of this adventure-packed hobby. There’s also the aspect of learning about the geology of your region and the generations who once lived there. There are metal detecting clubs in every state and most major cities in the U.S., so this is a great opportunity to meet people with interesting stories to tell and metal detecting tips to share. Metal detecting enthusiasts are eager to tell newbies how easy it is to find lost coins, jewelry, relics from the past, money caches, gold nuggets, antique bottles and many other valuable items.

Finding adventure is typical advice given to seniors. Studies often prove the value of looking forward to activities as a means of maintaining mental health. Treasure hunting with a metal detector will provide all of the stimulation you need. First, you can read about hidden treasures and where they are often found. It pays off to visit the town room at your local library because you can research prosperous hunting locations. The town room might be equipped with historical news resources or old maps with landmarks and crossroads. Look for news of wealthy landowners who left or may have buried treasure caches. Also, make note of areas that once had heavy traffic. When driving around your neighborhood, keep an eye out for large old trees and undeveloped land. These are sure signs that the territory has remained untouched for many years. Before getting started, be sure to check the current local and national laws. Always remember to request permission before hunting on private property. Here are some common treasure hunting locations you can start with:

  • Playgrounds
  • Recreation areas & amusement parks
  • Beaches, riverbanks, swimming quarries
  • Parks & picnic areas
  • Campgrounds
  • Hiking and bicycle trails
  • Schools and campuses
  • Local landmarks, points of interest
  • Excavation and construction sites
  • Location of the old town dump

If antique bottles interest you, privy pits (or old outhouses) are where the pay dirt is! They were used as refuse disposal areas many years ago. These are the places bottle diggers often find antique bottles, jars and relics. Be sure to read our article entitled “best metal detectors for finding antique bottles” for great tips and advice on finding antique bottles.

What Type of Metal Detector & Equipment Will You Need?

If you know someone who already owns a metal detector, take advantage of their knowledge. Arrange for a demonstration on how to use it. Nothing beats the hands-on experience of actually swinging a detector and hearing the sounds that indicate you’ve found a target. If this gets you excited about going out in the field, then it’s time to start researching detector choices. Depending on how much you wish to spend, there are quality detectors with very useful features in the entry-level, mid-level and high end price ranges. Check out another article in our Learning Library entitled, “Which Metal Detector is Best for You?” as a starting point.

A metal detector that is built to turn-on-and-go is ideal for beginners. It’s easy: just turn your detector on, adjust a couple of settings, put on some metal detecting headphones, and you’re ready to go! Some models use a high-pitched tone for good targets and a low-sounding grunt for junk targets. Others have a meter or LCD display which tells you what the object probably is. This target identification feature identifies whether you’ve found a dime or a bottle cap. Discrimination is an adjustment you can make, so your detector doesn’t sound off if you swing over a junk target like the pull tab from a soda can. For basic treasure hunting, the most popular choice is a multipurpose VLF (very low frequency) metal detector. Additional equipment such as a pinpointer, headphone, digger and tool pouch make retrieving your finds much easier.

Here are our top-selling models for retirees who are interested in various types of treasure hunting:

Entry-Level Detectors

Mid-Level Detectors

High-End Detectors

MetalDetector.com’s “My Metal Detecting Finds” Stories

It’s always fun to hear about people’s successes while using their metal detector. If you’re new to the hobby, it can also be a good source of inspiration. MetalDetector.com has a special section called My Metal Detecting Finds. Hobbyists from around the world submit real treasure hunting stories with photos of their finds. Here’s one submission from a self-proclaimed newbie, who says this is just the beginning of his exciting new-found hobby: First Find. Reviews from seniors using metal detectors like this one from 78 year old William and this one from Brenda show that this is a fun hobby for retirees. Hopefully, you will have just as much success when you set out to find coins, relics, jewelry and more. Equipped with a metal detector, you’re retired days may just be your most fun and enjoyable yet!

Copyright 2014 Detector Electronics Corp.

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