Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 20

Thread: Do metal detectors work?

  1. #1

    Do metal detectors work?

    Does anyone have any experience with metal detectors to find staples, nails, screws before my planer or jointer does? Any recomendations?

  2. #2
    I have a Little Wizard metal detector and it works quite well to locate metal materials in wood. You can also locate the drywall screws or nails in walls.
    wiard.jpg
    Lee Schierer
    USNA- '71
    Captain USN(Ret)

    My advice, comments and suggestions are free, but it costs money to run the site. If you found something of value here please give a little something back by becoming a contributor! Please Contribute

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Waterford, PA
    Posts
    344
    I use a cheap Harbor Freght model. You have to increase the sensitivity when you 1st get it (there are lots of how-to videos out there) but it does locate metal easily. I've used it for checking old lumber that we re-purposed into flooring and a countertop. I found every single item that could have damaged my saw blade and planer blades.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Cache Valley, Utah
    Posts
    1,525
    I have the HF, too. Works fine.

  5. #5
    I also have the little wizard that Lee mentions and it seems to work fine. I don't think it senses deep enough for use on, say, a bandsaw mill slabbing trees, but for jointing and planing and thin resaws it works for me. Its sensitive area is pretty small so you have to make several passes over a larger board, but you can move it fast. My biggest problem is remembering to use it
    --Certainty is the refuge of a small mind--

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    SE PA - Central Bucks County
    Posts
    50,995
    I also have the Little Wizard and it works fine for metal in material that's not overly thick. It's not effective for things like reclaimed beams. A stronger wand like the larger ones used in Airport security will likely have a deeper reach if that's important.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  7. #7
    I also have the same one that Dave and Lisa have from HF. Hasn't found anything for me, but I also haven't found anywhere it has failed. It will detect a brad nail on the other side of a 3/4 board, so I run it on both sides of my stock.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    E TN, near Knoxville
    Posts
    8,919
    I have several of the Lumber Wizards (different models) and several of the Little Wizards. The larger Lumber Wizards work very well at the sawmill.

    The little ones don't detect very deeply but should find things in 4/4 lumber. You can adjust the sensitivity to suit. I'd embed samples of what I wanted to detect in a board and test, just as you bury coins in the ground to test metal detectors used for coin/treasure hunting. (Contrary to what one might expect, the better treasure-hunting metal detectors are often no good for finding nails and such since by default they are tuned to ignore iron.) If you happen to live near me swing by and I'll give you one of the Little Wizards. I have more than I need.

    JKJ

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Location
    Averill Park NY
    Posts
    103
    I also have the Little Wizard. Works great.
    Some Blue Tools
    Some Yellow Tools
    And a Pet Grizzly
    ShapeokoXL
    Blue and White 50 Watt

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Lake Gaston, Henrico, NC
    Posts
    4,501
    I use a regular metal detector, and don't remember it ever not finding something-even tiny little remnants.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Toronto Ontario
    Posts
    9,699
    Quote Originally Posted by Paul F Franklin View Post
    I also have the little wizard that Lee mentions and it seems to work fine. I don't think it senses deep enough for use on, say, a bandsaw mill slabbing trees, but for jointing and planing and thin resaws it works for me. Its sensitive area is pretty small so you have to make several passes over a larger board, but you can move it fast. My biggest problem is remembering to use it
    Hi Paul, it's actually what I use when milling lumber on a band mill, it does find the nails and bolts..........regards, Rod.

    P.S. The only issue is the fairly small sensor area, it takes longer than using a wand type. It is sensitive, I remember once using it in the shop and it sensed metal in a couple of pieces of wood, turned out to the screw for the bench vise

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Waterford, PA
    Posts
    344
    Wanted to add, my metal detector will pickup screws/nails in my sawhorses under the subject piece of wood.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    San Diego area
    Posts
    217
    I had that problem too Lisa and someone suggested getting plastic horses.

    now I'm wondering if the detector is picking up the rebar or wire mesh in the concrete slab the horses are standing on? Does anyone know? This is the one I have https://www.harborfreight.com/9-volt...and-94138.html
    WoodsShop

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    E TN, near Knoxville
    Posts
    8,919
    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Wood View Post
    I had that problem too Lisa and someone suggested getting plastic horses.

    now I'm wondering if the detector is picking up the rebar or wire mesh in the concrete slab the horses are standing on? Does anyone know? This is the one I have https://www.harborfreight.com/9-volt...and-94138.html
    Try scanning by holding the detector above the suspected floor or object, in the air, with no wood.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    San Diego area
    Posts
    217
    thanks John! I should have thought about that!
    WoodsShop

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •