The first time I took my kids metal detecting, they went completely nuts over it. I took my son and daughter along with two of their friends to metal detect at a Civil War era home. There were lots of targets in the ground which kept them very busy digging. I had my starter detector with me that day; the Bounty Hunter Quick Silver detector.
Now I quickly learned that one adult armed with one metal detector and four kids armed with their digging tools was a bad ratio. The kids all had a blast digging each of the target areas that I marked, but soon after they all wanted to take their turn swinging the coil on my detector. Before I knew it, I had four kids all fighting over who got to use the metal detector.
That was it, they were all hooked on detecting. I did my best to let each of them take turns with the detector and find their own signals to dig. Once one kid started digging their target, I passed the detector to the next and let them find their own target to dig. It was at this point that I really wished I had another detector for the kids to use too.
I made some observations that day about how adult metal detectors just aren’t suited for children.
The first was the shaft length. Adult detectors just really aren’t sized well for children. I had to adjust the shaft to its shortest possible length, and even that was still too long for a couple of the kids. It had them reaching out too far with the coil, which seemed to quickly cause fatigue.
Weight was also an issue. I noticed them getting tired of swinging my adult metal detector and they gravitated towards using two hands. Notice the picture to the left of the little girl using the old Garrett detector. This is obviously way too heavy and she is holding the shaft of the detector with her free hand.
So kids really need a detector that is light weight, has a short shaft, is easy to use, and ideally won’t stress your wallet.
As they grow and continue to explore this great hobby, you can obviously get them into a detector that is a little more advanced.
So let’s take a look at a few metal detectors for kids that are great starter machines and designed for their little bodies.
The Bounty Hunter BHJS junior metal detector is designed specifically for kids. It has the ability to detect coin-sized objects down to a depth of around 5 inches. This is more than deep enough for our little diggers. Larger targets can be detected up to 3 feet deep. It has both visual and audible target indicators that show the signal strength of the target. The stronger the signal on the meter or the louder the tone, the closer the target is. It takes two 9 volt batteries to power this detector.
The Bounty Hunter BHJS is light weight and easy to use. It is adjustable and the length can be changed between 21 1/2″ up to 32″ from the top of the grip to the bottom of the search coil. The search coil isn’t waterproof, so you will want to have your kids use caution around water.
So what ages is this detector good for? It is good for any youngster that is old enough to swing a coil, all the way up to a pre-teen. But if your child reaches an age of 10 or 11 and shows real interest in metal detecting, you might want to consider one of the lower cost adult metal detectors that they can grow into and use for a number of years to come.
This package includes things such as a trowel for digging and a handy pouch to keep all of your ‘treasure finds’ in. It includes a magnifier for inspecting your finds or helping to read the dates on coins that are found.
It also includes a coin guide, a 12-pocket coin wallet, and a coin folder. When I first got into metal detecting, I was fascinated with finding coins. This package has everything that your junior ‘coin shooter’ needs to get up and running.
It has a 6.5″ search coil that is submersible up to two feet (note that only the search coil is submersible, not the detector itself). So your young one can use this detector in and around the creeks for some water hunting. The Cyclone will detect coins to a depth of 5″, and larger metal objects to a depth of 24″. This is plenty deep enough for a child to find a mound of lost coins. There is an eliminator control that allows you to tune out many unwanted items, like those annoying iron signals. The volume also varies in loudness depending upon the strength of the signal.
The Ground EFX Cyclone is adjustable from a length of 26″ to 36″. So young children can use this and continue to use it as they grow. It is designed to take they type of abuse that you can expect from kids. It is powered off of two 9-volt alkaline batteries. It has an average 4.3 out of 5 star rating, so you can be confident your child will love it.
So consider some of these detectors for the child in your life and get them outdoors on your next metal detecting hunt. My kids love to go metal detecting with me. I can tell you that there is nothing like seeing them experience the same excitement that I get each time I dig a signal and find something of value.