inexpensive metal detector

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gandalf23
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inexpensive metal detector

Postby gandalf23 » Wed Jan 14, 2015 2:48 pm

I have the week off, and have been working in the backyard finally digging a trench with my Ditch Witch. It's gone great. I now have power to the backyard at the patio and the sheds, well I will as soon as I wire up a new breaker box. And I have water at the back patio and the new shed which are 100 yards away from the house. I would like to add water to the other side of the driveway, without having to rip up the driveway. In order to get the electrical conduit under the sidewalk it took two days of digging and breaking rock as we are on rock and only have four to eight inches of dirt. It sucked. So I don't want to try that to go under the driveway.

But!

A couple of years ago when we added the veggie garden we found an old sprinkler head in it. Which I chopped off with a shovel (that was how I found it while digging) and since there was no water coming out forgot about it and where, exactly, it is. And there is a plastic sprinkler box in the yard with some pipe leading from it that appears that would go under the driveway and to the veggie garden area. I would like to find the pipe end in the veggie garden area and find out where the pipe goes from the box so that I can tie it in to the new water pipe I just layed and we can get a working water spigot on the other side of the driveway. In order to do this without digging up the whole yard randomly, I figured a metal detector would be what I need.

So,

The pipes are metal, probably copper. I would imagine that even a cheap metal detector would find a 1/2 inch copper pipe less than two feet down, but I don't know.

Will a cheap metal detector work for this?

What is a good, cheap, metal detector?

There are an assload of pawn shops around here, and most seem to have old metal detectors, is there one I should look for first there?

Would this one be alright?

http://www.amazon.com/Bounty-Hunter-Digger-Metal-Detector/dp/B0002J1LNO/ref=sr_1_1?s=lawn-garden&ie=UTF8&qid=1421242890&sr=1-1

I have a cousin who is an avid metal detector user, and her suggestions were 1) anything under $1000 is crap, and 2) wait till this summer at the family reunion and she'd loan me one of her old ones, but I want to get this done this weekend and be done with it. If possible.

Thanks!

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Weetabix
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Re: inexpensive metal detector

Postby Weetabix » Wed Jan 14, 2015 4:53 pm

Can she FedEx it to you and you back to her? That shouldn't cost too much, and you'd have both quality of metal detector and an earlier time for the work.
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Erik
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Re: inexpensive metal detector

Postby Erik » Wed Jan 14, 2015 5:18 pm

gandalf23 wrote: and her suggestions were 1) anything under $1000 is crap,

I dont know much about metal detectors, but I think this is dependent on what you intend to use it for. For someone that goes treasure hunting a lot in various locations on various grounds looking for small interesting objects among lots of other stuff, then yeah I think she probably has a valid point.
For someone that intends to use it for 15 minutes to an hour to find where a pipe runs in his own yard, where he pretty much knows where it is and only wants to pin it down, I'm not sure I believe you need perfect quality.

What you're looking for is a pretty big target, only 2 feet under a driveway, and you already have a general idea where it is. (Most likely it runs in a somewhat straight line from the box to the garden.) That should be pretty much ideal conditions, and if the detector is any kind of detector it should be able to do that. So I'd think even if you got a lot of false readings, it wouldn't be more than you could zero in on it, and maybe you'd end up digging one extra hole by mistake.

I like the idea of trying to get it FedEx'd, if that's cheaper than buying a cheap metal detector. But if it was me, and I could get one cheap enough, I'd probably gamble on it and just sell it or pawn it if it didn't work. For $56, I think it would be worth a try.
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Flintlock Tom
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Re: inexpensive metal detector

Postby Flintlock Tom » Wed Jan 14, 2015 5:19 pm

Even if the pipe itself is two feet down the end you chopped off won't be. If it's only a few inches below the surface any cheap metal detector should work. And, once you've located the end point, and you already know the origin point you're set.
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Steamforger
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Re: inexpensive metal detector

Postby Steamforger » Thu Jan 15, 2015 1:30 am

Maybe head over to Treasurenet.com and see if any clubs meet in your area. You may be able to ask someone to come do this for you for nothing more than a beer or two. Detectorists are always looking for ways to up their image with the public and finding lost shit for people is one of the easiest ways.

Also, there's some good reading over there. You might just get the bug anyway.

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Netpackrat
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Re: inexpensive metal detector

Postby Netpackrat » Thu Jan 15, 2015 1:40 am

This isn't going to help Gandalf given his time constraint, but they are fairly simple to build:

http://www.talkingelectronics.com/proje ... ors-1.html

I built a working metal detector from a solder together kit when I was in junior high school.
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gandalf23
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Re: inexpensive metal detector

Postby gandalf23 » Thu Jan 15, 2015 5:43 am

I have wanted to fiddle with metal detecting, so I'm more inclined to buy something. My cousin's old one is currently lent out to someone else, otherwise I would borrow it now. I ordered the one off amazon, it should be here Friday, so I can maybe get this done this weekend. Oh, also I can use it to find out where the water line comes into the house in the front yard, I think it splits off and half goes to the house and half to the back, and I want to add a shut off valve street side of the y. Or if it does not, just add a valve to the line near the house. The shutoff that the water company installed does not actually shut everything off, which is nice if you skip a bill or two :) , but not if you have water going everywhere and need to get it off.


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