Looking for a way to take your SCUBA diving to the next level? Many divers are exploring the exciting hobby of underwater metal detecting.
Underwater metal detecting and SCUBA diving are a pretty great pair. While you’re out diving and looking at all the amazing undersea life, your hands are basically free. Taking a metal detector along allows you to add another element to your dive that could even help you find sunken treasure!
There Are Fewer Metal Detectorists in the Ocean
Metal detectorists are even taking notice and getting their SCUBA diver’s certification so they too can search the ocean. They’re hoping to find lost jewelry, antique coins, relics or maybe even an entire sunken ship.
Metal detecting while out SCUBA diving can often be more successful than on land. This is because the ocean sees far fewer metal detectorists than land sites. Yet, many priceless treasures were lost at sea over the years in places like the Caribbean, the coast of Florida, the St. Lawrence River, the Great Lakes, and the New England coast.
Underwater Metal Detecting Equipment has Come a Long Way
With recent technological advances underwater metal detecting equipment has become more lightweight so it’s not cumbersome to have along with you on a dive. And, most metal detectors are really easy to use, no expert training required.
They’ve become more effective as well. New metal detectors can now be taken to deeper depths, and search a larger range of environments than ever before.
How to Find the Best Underwater Metal Detector for SCUBA Diving
To get started, be sure to select a model of underwater metal detector that offers the deepest depth rating possible. Some underwater metal detectors can only be submerged as deep as 40 or 50 feet underwater while others can go 200 feet or more. For SCUBA diving you’ll want the deepest rating possible.
You may also want to look at a machine that’s more versatile than just deep underwater metal detecting. Some metal detectors can search on land as well as underwater. This can be the perfect machine for many metal detectorists because it gives them such a wide search terrain. Metal detecting on the beach could be a perfect way to pass the time during a surface interval!
Other Equipment for Underwater Metal Detecting
After you select your underwater metal detector, you’ll want to be sure to have a few other pieces of essential equipment as well. The metal detecting accessories you’ll want to be sure to take along on your dive include
- Pair of Waterproof Headphones
- Sand Scoop
- Waterproof Treasure Case
- Waterproof Pinpointer
You may be able to find a package deal that includes the machine you want along with some or all of these metal detecting accessories. Or, you may choose to purchase them separately.
Metal detecting is easier, more efficient, and a lot more fun when you know your machine. Besides thoroughly reading the instruction manual, one of the ways you can familiarize yourself with your new metal detector is by using it for some shallow water treasure hunting first. This way you can focus on operating your metal detector and retrieving targets without having to share your attention with your SCUBA equipment.
If you’ve purchased a metal detector that works on land as well as underwater, then you can go treasure hunting on land initially, then try some shallow water hunts, then head out for your first dive. In some locations you may also be able to find a class to show you the basics of underwater metal detecting. There are also some great online metal detecting videos that can be helpful as well, so spending some time on YouTube could be worthwhile. Lastly, you may find some folks who are already into underwater treasure hunting in local SCUBA diving or metal detecting groups, so ask around!
Now that you’ve got everything you need, you’re ready to head out SCUBA diving with your favorite underwater metal detector. To help guide you to great treasure hunting sites, do some research on shipwrecks and the history of the area before you go. Then, select a site and get out there to dive for treasure.
Daniel Bernzweig manages MetalDetector.com in Southborough, MA. He has written extensively on the subject of metal detecting since the mid 1980’s. He has traveled world-wide in his pursuit of educating, exploring and advising others in the proper use of metal detectors. Outside of the business he enjoys mentoring students, being involved in the community and spending time with his family.