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Methods of Target Recovery When Metal Detecting

As more people have come to embrace metal detecting as a fun and active hobby, its reputation has started to tarnish. As targets get recovered, public and private places are left untidy after finishing.
Most target recovery efforts require metal detectorists to dig into the ground to reach the items they’ve found. There is a right and a wrong way to approach this task. [1]
The following metal detecting tips review what options are available so that you can choose the most appropriate method.


What Are the Best Methods of Target Recovery?

Metal detecting can be an exciting and rewarding hobby, but it's essential to use proper methods when attempting to recover targets. Here are some options for target recovery to consider using when you've found a potential treasure. [2]

1. Pinpointing Method

Once a target has been detected, use a pinpointing feature or a handheld pinpointer to locate the target's exact location in the ground. This technique will help to avoid damaging the item and ensure its intact recovery.
Most modern metal detectors have a built-in pinpointing feature that helps the detectorist to precisely locate the target. The device emits a narrower, more precise signal to determine the item's exact location.
Once you have a precise reading, you'll disturb less of the surrounding area to retrieve the target. Not only is this approach socially responsible, but it also requires less work to find the item.

2. Digging Method

Use a digging tool, such as a trowel or a small shovel, to carefully dig around the target. Be sure to penetrate the ground only as much as necessary to retrieve the target and avoid damaging any surrounding artifacts or features.

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Start by making a small hole. Gradually expand it as you go deeper into the ground, taking care not to avoid the item or the surroundings.
It helps to stop and rescan the area with your metal detector to determine if you’re getting closer. Use a sieve or sifting tool for small targets.

3. Sifting Method

If the target is small or difficult to see, you can use a handheld sieve to sift through the soil and recover the item. This method is especially useful for finding objects like coins or jewelry, especially when the ground is dry or gritty. [3]
Hold the sifting tool over the excavation area and pour the soil or debris through the sieve or mesh screen. Use a gentle back-and-forth motion to sift through the material, allowing small targets to fall through the mesh and collect in a container or directly onto a tarp or cloth.

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Once you have sifted through the material, carefully examine the collected targets for any potential finds. A handheld magnifying glass can help you look more closely at intricate or small items.


4. Scraping Method

For shallow targets, you can use a scraping tool like a garden hoe or rake to carefully remove the top layer of soil and uncover the target. Be sure to use this technique gently and avoid damaging any items in the area. [4]
This technique is only suitable for shallow target recovery efforts. You’re taking away thin soil layers until you’ve exposed the item.

5. Probing Method

If the target is buried deep in the ground, you can use a probing tool to locate it without digging. A probe is a long, slender tool that can be pushed into the ground to detect the presence of metal.
Insert the probe tool carefully, taking care to extract the target by prying it loose from the soil. Move slowly to ensure you care for the item and your surroundings.


Safe Target Recovery Is Possible with These Techniques  

These metal detecting techniques for recovering targets can help you safely remove items. Still, as a metal detectorist, it is essential to understand and embrace the social responsibilities of this hobby.
One of the primary ways to be socially responsible is to obtain permission before detecting on any public-private protected land. Trespassing is illegal and can lead to serious consequences, including fines and criminal charges. [5]
Some areas may be off-limits or have specific guidelines that must be followed. Stay safe, wear appropriate apparel when detecting, and please remember to properly dispose of any trash or debris found during the detecting process.
When you use these methods of target recovery with a metal detector on sale, you’ll find this hobby is a fantastic way to get outside, discover treasures, and become part of a new family. Why not get started today?




Read More:

Why Metal Detecting Is a Perfect Hobby

Avoid These Common Beginner Metal Detecting Mistakes!

What Can I Find With a Metal Detector?