Jump to content

Pick Magnet Mounting Location (updated With Followup)?


Recommended Posts

I'm going to mount a super magnet to the bottom side of my pick.  My question is:  How far from the tip should it be mounted?  The magnet is 1.5" diameter and the pick blade is 2" wide.

pick-magnet_mounting-location.thumb.JPG.b7afa8d1f194e0f65063e427c4ec779d.JPG

As can be seen in the photo (sorry for the overexposure...), if I mount it touching the neck then the closest any part of the magnet will be from the blade edge is (4.5" - 1.5" = ) 3.0 inches (7.5 cm).  Is that best or should I mount it closer to the blade edge?

In case it matters (and isn't obvious), the use for this pick is aeolian placers (e.g. Rye Patch, NV).

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites


I put mine on the bottom of the handle. Tried bolts, JB Weld, etc on the metal head or blade of the pick and no matter what it eventually slides off since I am often hacking through tree roots or broken rock. The dirt I'm digging is extremely magnetic and coats a magnet in minutes, so I only want it to get dirty when I really need it. On the pick head would negate its use as a magnet quickly as it gets coated with serpentine dust.

One nice thing about it being on the bottom of the wood handle is I can stick it in a very small hole to ping any small bits of iron. 

For fluffy dirt like you will be in it maybe doesn't matter too much.

  • Like 7
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Another vote for drilling it into the bottom of the handle, putting it on the pick end is doomed for failure, it'll either break with you using the pick in rocky areas smashing it or fall off from the shock of hitting the pick on the ground/rocks all the time.

Don't just stick it onto the end of the handle, it'll get damaged, drill a hole in the handle the size of the magnet and recess it into the handle so its protected and just put some decent glue holding it in there.  Some magnets have a screw hole you can use to hold it in too.

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Bottom of the handle....logic. No movement, no hidden iron objects (looking for a target thats already on your pick magnet), better balance and plus, it makes you think about using the magnet more thoughtfully coz you gotta target the magnet over your pile to find the signal. Helps with pinpointing skills lol

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Three responses so far but none of them answered the eventual, detailed question I asked.  (To be fair, my thread title didn't go into the detail that my post contents did.)  Thanks, anyway, particularly for the explanations/logic.  Makes sense for many applications and anyone searching the site for magnet mounting locations will appreciate reading those explanations.

I've modified my short handled pick with a long, tapered handle to double as a walking stick.  (My earlier setup had a magnet right where you suggest.)  Thus the end of the handle will be the 'business' end when in that 'walking stick' mode (i.e. constantly hitting the ground, etc.).  I'm willing to take a chance that the magnet mounted on the head comes off unintentionally.  They're inexpensive and I have a backup magnet if that happens in the field.  I get out prospecting/fossicking with a detector for only about a week each year when I can go West.  For you guys who use their picks multiple times per month, my light-duty methods are less likely to survive.

BTW, some Apex picks (see this for example) have a magnet mounted right where I'm putting mine.  (See picture below, from the link.) 

632721386_Screenshotat2022-05-20204648.thumb.png.0380b38bb52914d58ab80d2b68e9275d.png

Apex picks also often have more magnets, including on the butt of the handle as you three have recommended.  It appears they weld a ring on the head and let the magnet's strong attraction keep it in place.  I'm going to epoxy a brass boss with embedded 10-32 nut to the pick head and screw the magnet on (using medium duty LocTite Threadlocker on the screw threads).  Reversible/modifiable -- my preferred requirement in just about every mod I do.

So I have two potential failure modes: 1) screw loosens on its own (even with the LocTite) and 2) epoxy bond fails.  Here's an interesting YouTube video testing steel-to-steel bonding for several epoxies.  I'll be using the old reliable JB-Weld original (separate tubes for resin and hardener) which did quite well in those tests.  The main difference for my application is that one of my metals is brass (the other being steel).  I'll be finding out if brass surfaces bond as strongly as steel.

I'll report back later this summer with how well (or poorly) my method fares.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ive had the same magnet attached to my pick handle since 1997. Brass screw with brass washer and epoxy on the thread. Only loosened once. Maybe Im just lucky lol

The magnet on head idea always fails, the impact from digging eventually breaks the glue. 

  • Like 5
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I lift big rocks with my pick all the time, if I had magnets on it like that pick in the photos they'd break the first time I use it.

  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Even with the magnet against the handle shaft it will eventually break when you hit a rock just right. Epoxy will too. I assume you don't weld since you are going this route. I would suggest paying someone to weld ( a six pack would probably be enough) butting against the shaft,  a collar/ Short piece of pipe just big enough to accept the magnet. Just the surface would be showing. Any further towards the end interferes with digging. Just my opinion. 

One of my cool detecting finds was a VERY strong magnet. After getting the signal and scaping a inch or two down the signal disappeared completely. Took me fee minutes to notice it stuck to my pick.🤨

Link to comment
Share on other sites

8 hours ago, Lost Scout said:

I assume you don't weld since you are going this route.

I'm not a welder but have a friend who is an amateur welder.  The pros are in a different category.  But the temper would be lost so it would have to be re-heat-treated after welding.  That's another skill in itself but presumably a pro would have the knowledge and equipment to do that.  But, yes, that would definitely be the preferred solution -- Apex models being the proof.

Mounting on top of the blade would seem to be less likely to get knocked off when digging compared to the underside, but still vulnerable.  I think I'll try the underside first (better for its secondary function of walking stick?) and if I have to go to plan-B later (i.e. responders' prophecy comes true) I'll have learned the hard way -- experience being the best teacher.

My initial post was regarding how close to the blade edge to mount the manget.  I think the responses have answered that (indirectly) -- as far back as possible to be less susceptible to getting knocked off.  So thanks to all for the advice and I'll let you know later this summer ('winter' for you Southerners) how successful/unsuccessful my mod is.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I would leave that Hodan pick alone...maybe put one on the end  handle  instead. They are a real nice well balanced pick I still got one that I bought for the wife. I lost my long handled one off the back of my buds side by side couple years ago. Just buy the Apex with the magnets already attached. They are bullet proof the magnets wont fall out..... you would have to do something foolish to break the Apex pick. The Hodan on the other hand is more fragile and easy to break. Putting more weight up front on that pick would be like changing the smile on the Mona Lisa 🙂 

strick 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • GB_Amateur changed the title to Pick Magnet Mounting Location (updated With Followup)?

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...