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Finding That Lost Bolt

Ponyman66

Yak, yak, yak
I can't tell you how many times I've dropped a bolt or nut in the dirt or grass. I then spent what seemed like an eternity looking for it.....usually unsuccessfully! While it would be nice to have one of those big block magnets handy, I don't. I came across a pretty useful thing today and thought I'd share it.

I had a Fox body I stripped the drive train out of for use in my coupe. The shell will soon be moving along, going to a fellow who can use the suspension out of it. I moved it from where I had stripped it in order to get it to a better location for loading onto a trailer. I knew I had dropped a bunch of hardware, but wasn't too concerned at the time because it wasn't needed for my project....with one exception, a starter bolt.

Since the car was moved and the area was now dirt, grass and leaves I figured I'd sort through it to find any hardware and put it in the bolt bin. I was also hoping that I'd find the bolt I did need! Instead of raking through everything I used a stick for a few minutes but quickly got nowhere. I had an empty long neck beer bottle (it is a holiday weekend!), and started using it. That's when I discovered it's pretty darn useful in locating metal objects!

By sweeping the open end of the bottle loosely through the dirt and debris it creates an "echo chamber" in the bottle. As soon as the end of the bottle hits something hard, the noise is amplified and you hear it quit well. Kind of a poor man's metal detector (or a redneck metal detector if you prefer!). I found hardware in places I'd checked previously and missed (unfortunately, not the starter bolt!). Even small screws were located.

You can't use this method in gravel because it makes the same noise. Hard wood or plastic doesn't affect it though, and the sound is readily distinguishable from metal. Now you have another excuse to down a cold one before looking for that dropped bolt!
 

AzPete

Well-Known Member
I have the 3" round magnet on a broom handle......I only drop all the non magnetic stuff now......
You do have a good reason for an empty beer bottle though.
 

Midlife

Well-Known Member
Staff member
Moderator
I can just imagine your neighbors watching you with an empty beer bottle scanning the ground while bending over...

Damn drunken LEO!
 

tarafied1

Well-Known Member
"Midlife" said:
I can just imagine your neighbors watching you with an empty beer bottle scanning the ground while bending over...

Damn drunken LEO!
that's exactly what I was thinking! :beer
 

Ponyman66

Yak, yak, yak
Ha! You all have obviously NOT looked at on the Google map in my profile showing where I live! One of the many benefits of living in a more rural area....very few neighbors! And the neighbors you do have, well, they're probably probably more drunk and could give a crap less!! LOL

:beer :beer :beer
 
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