Magnet fishing has nothing to do with catching fish. So what is it? We’re going to explain in detail what magnet fishing is and how you can get started with this fun new hobby!
Magnet fishing uses a high-powered magnet and a rope to catch metal objects in bodies of water. The magnet attaches itself to items like railroad spikes, metal artifacts, and random objects, which are then pulled up to the surface.
You can find some unusual items when magnet fishing. Magnet fishing allows you to find treasure, while also cleaning up the water. How does it help clean up the water? When you find scrap metal that would be considered trash, magnet fishing etiquette requires you to dispose of the trash.
This slightly new hobby has become one of my favorite ways to discover treasure. On my very first try, I pulled up multiple items and I was just about as excited as a kid on Christmas! Find out more about how to magnet fish here.
What is a Fishing Magnet?
Fishing magnets are strong neodymium magnets. The neodymium magnet was developed in 1984 by General Motors and a company called Sumitomo Special Metals. These are the strongest possible magnets, which is why they are used for magnet fishing.
Magnets used for magnet fishing, usually have one to two eyehooks attached to them. This allows you to tie a rope to the magnet. There is usually one eyehook on the top, and sometimes a second eyehook on the side, for multiple casting and pulling options.
When magnet fishing, you may want to consider bringing more than one magnet. Having multiple magnet sizes can ensure that you can pull up both big and small finds. The second stronger magnet can also help you get a magnet that is stuck, unstuck.
What is the Point of Magnet Fishing?
Magnet fishing has multiple purposes. On one hand, you can find all types of treasures and relics, and on the other hand, you can help clean up the water by removing scrap metals and trash. It helps you get out of the house and into nature, and can be a great source of exercise.
If you’re like me, then you just like being outdoors. If traditional fishing is not your thing, but you love water, then magnet fishing can be a great alternative. You get to find cool stuff, clean up water, and no fish are harmed in the process.
Is Magnet Fishing Safe?
When magnet fishing, you will want to follow some best practices to make sure this hobby is safe for you. Firstly, you want to wear a good pair of non-tearable gloves. You will most likely be pulling up and handling sharp metal objects or objects with sharp corners. Read our article on dangerous items here.
There is always the possibility that you could pull up a discarded weapon. In this case, you should not handle the weapon with your bare hands and call the authorities. Why shouldn’t you touch it? The weapon could have been used in a crime, which is also why you should call the authorities.
If the weapon is something that you would like to keep, you can give it to authorities and then request that it be returned to you, if and when it is cleared of any crime. You may find a sword or knives from past wars that you would like to add to your collection of artifacts.
What Can you Find Magnet Fishing?
The possibilities are endless. You may find something extremely valuable, like an artifact of value, or you may find something that is just scrap metal. I have personally found many railroad spikes, which I collect, and even a couple of bike frames.
Some possible finds:
- Bike parts
- Railroad parts
- Scrap metal
Sometimes you will find other questionable items, like safes, that have been dumped into the river. If you think an item may have been stolen, you will want to call the authorities, if they do not find an owner or tie it to a possible crime, it could be yours to open.
Will a Magnet Pick Up Coins?
One of the reasons you should use a neodymium magnet is that it is a rare earth magnet, and can pick up many types of coins. Unfortunately, most magnets including neodymium will probably not pick up gold or silver.
A gold or silver coin that is made with other metals could be picked up. As well as anything that is attached to a metal necklace or metal string. Sometimes very old coins had holes in them and were kept on ropes or strings of metal.
See our article for Can You Find Coins Magnet Fishing
What is the Best Size Magnet for Magnet Fishing?
The best way to answer this is that you should carry more than one size of magnet with you. Not every magnet is made equal, even if they have a weight rating, you may need to try more than one size. I’ve had a 350-pound magnet that could lift more than the 1200-pound magnet that I have.
Use trial and error. You will come across some very large and heavy objects. To lift these you will need a large magnet such as a 1200-pound magnet. If you do not want to have to lift heavy objects, you can stick with a smaller magnet for smaller finds.
Is Magnet Fishing Popular?
Currently, magnet fishing is a new hobby. It is just starting to get picked up as a popular thing to do. It can be very fun and exciting, so I think the popularity will grow over the years. I’ve never gone magnet fishing and seen another person also magnet fishing in the same body of water.
Do I think it will ever be as popular as traditional fishing? Definitely not. This will always be a hobby for treasure seekers and adventurists. Traditional fishing provides a source of food and is fun for all ages. Also, magnet fishing is not children friendly because of the possible dangers of sharp items and weapons.
How to Start Magnet Fishing
Getting started with magnet fishing is extremely easy. All you need is a good magnet, a good rope, and some gloves. It is beneficial to start learning how to tie different types of knots since magnet fishing requires tying a rope to a magnet.
What you need:
- Strong neodymium magnet
- A strong rope
These are just the basics. You may decide that you need double of everything, or other items to help with the process, like a grappling hook. If you would like to learn exactly how to magnet fish, then read our tutorial here.
Can a magnet find gold?
Gold is not attracted to magnets. There are some occasions such as with gold coins where the coin may have other metals that magnets do attract. Finding metal is best done with a metal detector and digging tools.
How long has magnet fishing been around?
It is unclear how long it has been around. It may have been started by boaters who dropped items into the water such as keys and sunglasses. Today, thousands of people around the world magnet fish as a hobby.