To some, magnet fishing is just a hobby. To others, it is an eco-friendly alternative to fishing. Whatever be your take on magnet fishing, it is a fancy treasure hunting endeavor. It can bring out the adventurer in you and help you get to establish new connections with the water bodies around you.
Magnet fishing for beginners
If you do not already know what this term means, then let us simplify it for you. It is nowhere near popular fishing activity. It is the activity where you tether a magnet to your fishing rod with a sinker and the whole setup to fish for metal objects, ferromagnetic substances in particular.
The pleasures in magnet fishing
Some look at it as a fun way to pick odd objects that lay untouched at the bottom of lakes and rivers. With the rapidly growing popularity of this pastime, it is also essential to know about the dangers in it. Make sure that you perform the activity only in a waterbody where magnet fishing is not prohibited. Stay away from searching waterbodies in private properties. Like conventional fishing, there are some rules and regulations that you should know about when you go to magnet fishing. Some end up picking guns or explosives, even grenades from the bottom of the water bodies. When this happens, avoid handling the object and report it to the local authorities. As long as you take all the precautions recommended, this activity can be a delightful experience.
The power of neodymium magnets
For efficient magnet fishing, one of the significant aspects is to ensure to pick a magnet that is strong, yet not heavy. In most cases, you would need a heavy magnet for a large pulling force. However, if your magnet itself is too heavy, then pulling out a heavy item from water would be strenuous. Therefore, you would need a magnet that is compact but featuring a strong pulling force. Neodymium magnets are some of the strongest out there in the market.
As a rare earth material, it is known for its large pull force, even with a small surface area.
With a small magnet weighing hardly 1 or 2lbs, you would be able to pull objects that are hundreds of pounds heavy. Such a pull force is critical because, below the water, pulling items with a magnet is not going to be the same as in a dry condition. The ferromagnetic object is not always going to be in its best state to be easily attracted by the magnet.
The longer an object lies beneath the water, the more debris it collects. You, therefore, need a strong pull force that works beyond the thick layers of dirt. The type of contact established depends on how the object is lying on the river bed. There is no guarantee that your magnet always gets a flat area of contact. Tackling all these challenges, neodymium magnets have are the most reliable choices for magnet fishing. These are also durable, and for years people have been using them for this activity. You would, therefore, find plenty of options in neodymium magnets for magnet fishing, no matter what your budget is.
Pick magnet fishing kits or build one from scratch?
To be able to make this decision, you should know what goes into completing a setup that gets you ready for magnet fishing. 4 main tools are indispensable for this activity-
- A strong magnet that comes with an eyebolt is one of the very first items to add to your fishing supplies. Some even screw a rugged eyebolt to a magnet in case you do not want to buy a new magnet with an eyebolt.
- The pull cord or paracord is the second most important piece of equipment. You are better off with something that is in a bright color for better visibility, no matter what the ambient light condition is.
To secure the paracord in the eyebolt, use a strong knot like Double Davy or Perfection knot or even a taut-line hitch. These are knots that do not get loose as you tug the cord or when the cable is wet. You can use a thread locker for added safety. These safety measures are essential so that you do not lose your precious magnet once it has caught on the treasure you are picking up. Make sure that you also wear a cut-resistant glove to protect your hands. It might not be like conventional fishing endeavors as you would be towing much more massive hauls in this case.
There are ready to use magnet fishing kits in the market. These come with all the supplies you need to get started. They make perfect choices for beginners. Some of them come with magnets, cords, thread lockers, and convenient carry cases for them. You, therefore, have a secure way to carry all your supplies in an organized fashion when you go to magnet fishing. For those who like to customize their experience, entirely picking a good magnet is the best place, to begin with. Whether you are fishing in canals or lakes or even rivers, choosing a suitable magnet goes a long way in getting the job done right.
Types of magnets available for fishing
Classification of fishing magnets is mainly based on how and where you install the rope. Based on this there are two configurations to choose from-
As the name indicates, these come with a single magnetic surface. There is the loop for fastening the cord on the other side. The strength of the magnet lies on one side. These are stronger; however, you have to be careful not to lose the hold. With just one side to hold the object, you should make sure that it doesn’t tilt. Sides of the magnet do not offer a good hold.
These carry magnetic pull on both sides and are vertically tipped down into the waterbody. You fasten the loop on the narrow side of the magnet. It allows you to trap objects with two times the possibility of getting a hold. You can easily clasp on to objects that are close to the sides of the magnet, where the magnetic pull force is the strongest.
It is hard to generalize whether a single-sided magnet is beneficial or a double-sided one. The kind of objects you fish for and the place where you do the job has a lot to tell. If you are more towards pulling the object up vertically like when you are fishing from a bridge, then a single-sided one does the job. However, if you are standing near a shallow water body and trying to drag your find, then you would do better with a double-sided one.
Which one should you choose?
To understand each type of magnet better and to know which one suits you, you should see how each of these works underwater.
With a double-sided magnet when you drag it underwater, the sides with a strong pull force are on the top and at the bottom. If you happen to glide them past the ferromagnetic objects on their sides, then you miss those objects. One significant benefit of the double-sided design is that it doesn’t easily snag under vegetation growth underwater.
With a single-sided magnet as you pull the cord, the powerful magnetic side topples to go at the top. If you perform a dragging motion, this one gets easily tangled in the plants beneath. Also, with dragging, you have the least possibility of finding objects with a single-sided magnet. Places where you can tug it up and down, you are sure to make the most of these magnets.
What are the other options in magnet designs?
Besides the standard disc-like single-sided and double-sided magnets, there are cone-shaped ones that are recently popular in the market. These deliver power like the conventional magnets while carrying a conical shape that helps prevent the magnet from getting tangled. These significantly minimize snagging. Therefore, they are handy additions to your kit if you often fish at ponds with plenty of plant growth. You can fish for objects and effortlessly retrieve them as well. Some conical magnets come with a plastic cone cover and are relatively less expensive than all magnet cones.
Materials to choose
Neodymium magnets are the ones that people with experience recommend for beginners and the pros. These are so strong that merely bringing two of these magnets close by can make them shatter. It is owing to the pull force of these magnets. The pull force here is several folds that weight of the magnet itself. There are also many ferrite magnets that you might find in the market. People often pick these because of the low-price tag that they carry. These feature a more sturdy build and a large size. Do not judge them by the size of these magnets. They are not as powerful as they appear. Most of the ferrite magnets have that grey color on the outside, which is one feature that helps you differentiate them. Weak magnets like these can prove your efforts to be futile.
What are the factors that you should consider?
By factors, for consideration, we mean the parameters that you should compare from the specification of the magnet you buy. It is not just the material that matters but a variety of other aspects. Pick the right material and then decide whether you need a single-sided or a double-sided configuration. Once you make this decision here are a few more points to look into-
Weight of the magnet
As we mentioned already, you do not need something heavy- you only need a large pull force. The real question is, how heavy is too heavy when it comes to picking a magnet? There can be small and light magnets with a good pull force and large ones with weak pull force. Therefore, consider the weight and size of the magnet to make a better judgment. You need something that is preferably wide but not too big that it snags everywhere. You also need something light so that it doesn’t add to the weight of the haul when you tug your cord. There are magnets as light as 0.5lbs with pull force of 100’s of pounds. These are great choices for beginners.
Pull force calculation is based on the material and the design of the magnet. It also depends on the amount of neodymium in the magnet and the coating and other factors. Ideally, most users pick magnets with pull force at least 200lbs or more. You need a stronger pull force if you are fishing in a river with strong currents. Some more massive magnets come with a pull force of more than 1000lbs. These are undoubtedly the best choices for those who involve in magnet fishing regularly.
Mounting hold – a countersunk hole is beneficial
When the magnet comes with a countersunk hole, then adding or removing the eyelet becomes easier. Therefore, you would be able to fasten the magnet the way you prefer. Some come with a regular bolt, as well.
Threadlocker included or not
It is a thin adhesive that you can apply to secure the knot and prevent it from loosening while underwater. Some magnets come with included thread locker. With this, you do not have to spend an additional amount on buying one.
You can start with a small budget and pick something lower than $20 or even go beyond $100. There are magnets in all price ranges available. If you need a good value for money, then grade N42 magnets are strong, durable and also come with a cool operating temperature.
Coating for corrosion resistance
With all the moisture and debris that the magnet withstands, the surface prevents corrosion and rusting. The best-rated magnets come with a 3-layer nickel-copper and nickel coating profile. These shield the magnet from damage without affecting its magnetic properties. They also help prevent cracks on the surface. Some also feature a stainless steel A3 grade coating for an elegant glossy look.
The coercivity of neodymium is something that makes it a popular option for magnet fishing. It means that this is a magnet that doesn’t get demagnetized- its magnetic property is permanent. With its strong magnetic field, it can easily attract more massive objects. The kind of neodymium alloy used to make the magnet determines its durability. Coating layers, as covered above, also influence the strength of the picked magnet.
Many brands have established themselves as strong contenders in the field of magnetic equipment. When you choose such trusted brands, you have the benefit of picking some of the best-rated magnets in the market. The other benefit comes in the form of support that comes from the brand and the many discussion forums where you find information about them.
Many manufacturers offer a 15 to 30 days return policy. It makes it convenient to try the magnet and return it in case you change your mind. Many come with a hassle-free warranty.
Consider the elastic limit of the magnet. It is the maximum force it can bear until it gives away or shatters.
Answering the common questions about magnet fishing and choosing magnets
Do you need a heavy magnet for a higher pull force?
The pull force is what matters and not the weight of the magnet. Usually measured in pounds, this is the maximum holding power of the magnet. Depending on the shape of the magnet, the thickness of the magnetic material, and coating on the surface, the pull force varies.
Are neodymium magnets safe to use?
Being exceptionally strong on the pull force aspect, these magnets are surprisingly brittle. Bringing two or more neodymium magnets together is the real problem. As long as you are only handling one of these magnets at a time, there are not many safety hazards to worry about. When you choose neodymium magnets with a strong pull force, you should also keep your valuable electronics away to prevent any damage.
Which type of magnet should you pick?
Single-sided, double-sided, and conical magnets all have their perks and limitations. Understand the type of magnet fishing you do. It helps you get a picture of the right kind of magnet to choose from.
A final word
Picking the best magnets for magnet fishing can improve the probability of finding better objects. It can also increase the likelihood of actually taking home a treasure every time you go fishing. These can significantly reduce the efforts you have to take and simplify the task for you. Whether you are a beginner or a pro in magnet fishing, some magnets suit your style. Given the growing popularity of the sport, there are many choices available now, and buying a good magnet is now easier than ever before.