Coins Fishing Magnet

Magnet Fishing for COINS (Everything You Need to Know!)

Magnet Fishing for Coins

Magnet Fishing is one of those activities that will give you the opportunity to pull out all kinds of finds!

Yes, some of them might be just junk, but there are good chances to come up with highly valuable finds …

… One of these finds are coins! That’s why beginners often ask all sorts of questions about the possibility to use their magnet to pick up coins …

… In this Article, I address this question specifically so you can understand what it takes to come up with more coin finds.

Can you find coins magnet fishing?

You can definitely find coins using your magnet. In fact, a lot of metal detecting hobbyists that hunt for coins easily transition over to magnet fishing because of the chance to find coins.

Just about any body of water you come across, from the smallest creek to the beach, will have coins in them. It’s a matter of visiting these locations with the right tools and the patience to comb through thoroughly with a magnet.

Newer coins recently minted have iron/ steel cores and are magnetic. The majority of North American coins are not magnetic. Any gold or silver coins will not be picked up by your magnet since neither metal is magnetic.

You’ll read later on about the circumstances regarding still finding gold and silver coins.

However, the entire world uses a different currency and coins from around the world always end up in strange places. Luckily for you, that means you can find them hiding in deep waters or in a shallow creek bed.

Just about every body of water you have come across is a perfect spot for tossing a magnet into. Besides all the other types of metal you’ll find, coins will also appear.

To make things better, you might even come across a few rare and valuable coins during your fishing trips.

Best Fishing Magnet for Coins …

simple fishing magnet

Finding the right magnet can be confusing considering all the different ones available online. You will need one strong enough to attract coins, but not that will be too heavy to toss around.

The MHDMAG 500lbs High Power Fishing Magnet (Check it Here at Amazon) is the perfect magnet coin fishing. And for an all around useful magnet.

It is a 2.95” diameter neodymium magnet that is ideal for magnet fishing for all kinds of metal. Regardless of what you are after, you are bound to find and retrieve most metals with this kind of magnet.

Coins are always abundant, if you are outside of the United States. That doesn’t mean you can’t find them in the US, it just takes more patience. All types of fishing involve a bit of patience.

A great amount of force is also needed to attract coins because they are either buried deep in the ground or their magnetic materials are too low.

What that means is a coin could have a silver coating which blocks the iron core from being attracted to a magnet.

A 500lb magnet like the MHDMAG 500lbs High Power Fishing Magnet is strong enough to get coins out.

It is also lightweight which you’ll appreciate after a few casts and reels in.

Don’t forget, you’ll need a heavy duty nylon rope and a pair of gloves to protect your hands.

Another option you might want to consider is a double-sided magnet like the MHDMAG Double Sided Fishing Magnet (Check it Here at Amazon).

These types of magnets are actually two magnets attached to each other with opposite ends exposing magnets.

They are rated as the total pulling force, when actually each side is half of the full force. Instead of 800lbs each, they are actually 400lbs. These types of magnets cover more ground except with less pulling force.

Although 500lbs is the ideal minimum, 400lbs will still pick up coins

Common types of coins to expect Magnet Fishing …

Pure silver and gold coins are out, so what is left? Listed below are coins you’ll attract with your magnet.

You lower your chances of retrieving these coins with a weaker magnet, try to stick with 500lbs of pulling force and higher.

Which of these coins are magnetic?

Which coin you get is a mystery until you reel it in. Here are the ones you might come across out in the field.

1. Old coins

We are talking about ancient coins lost to time. These are much rarer, and unfortunately not as valuable as you would think.

One example of a coin that would be attracted to a magnet are the medieval Chinese coins that date thousands of years.

These types of coins were minted out of iron, making them ideal for magnet fishing.

2. Roman coins

Roman coins are popular among collectors. A lot of late roman coins have a high amount of iron content, enough to stick to a powerful magnet.

3. Gold coins

The only gold coins, and silver for this matter, are plated with gold, not pure gold. The contents underneath the plating is attracted to the magnet. Not the gold.

With that being said, you will come across “fake” gold coins. Or, 14k gold plated novelty coins. Don’t let them fool you.

Who knows? Maybe you’ll find a cash box filled with real gold coins. That might be the only way you’ll get your hands on sunken treasure.

4. US Coins

The 1943 steel cent is the only US coin to contain enough materials to attract a magnet. Nickels on the other hand are the only other to have a slight amount of magnetism, but not enough to be picked up.

Materials normally used for minting during World War 2 were instead used elsewhere instead of for pennies. Which is why the US instead minted the penny out of steel.

Keep an eye out for this piece of American War history.

5. UK Coins

According to the Royal Mint, the composition of 1p and 2p coins was changed from bronze to copper-plated steel in 1992 and the composition of 5p and 10p coins was changed from cupro-nickel to nickel-plated steel in 2011.

This means the core of these coins is steel. Making them perfect for magnet fishing.

In fact, the collection of these coins has become so popular that artist Paul Cocksedge created a sculpture for passers-by to place their unwanted coins on it.

This sculpture is called ‘Drop’ and was created in 2010, it is magnetic and all the coins it collects are given to charity.

6. Canadian Coins

Canadian mints use a lot of nickel in their minting process which results in a lot of their coins being magnetic. Fortunately, North America has access to these coins all over it.

One of the most common Canadian coins you’ll run into is their nickel. The composition is 94.5% steel nickel plated.

These highly magnetic coins are excellent pieces to add to your collection. They date back to 1853 and all the way to present time.

7. Worldwide Coins

One of the most fascinating parts about magnet fishing is finding objects from all around the world.

Almost every country has a coin that will be picked up by a neodymium magnet.

In North America, you’ll have better luck picking up a Canadian nickel. But did you know coins from Mexico, such as the 1998 10 centavo, will also be picked up?

All of South America has a coin that is magnetic because of their steel core.

Maybe someone who recently visited Jamaica accidentally dropped a 1996 1 C in your local pond?

Or how about a 1992 100 Lire from Italy fell in the creek near your house?

Hopefully by now you are getting the picture.

There are plenty of coins from all around the world that have a steel/iron core and just waiting to be found.

Ideas on Cleaning Magnet Fishing Coins …

So you found a few coins on your trip out to the water, but how do you clean them?

Regardless of the coin you found, you’ll want to take extra precaution on how you clean and preserve them.

There is the argument on whether or not cleaning a coin is necessary. In the coin collecting community, there are those who believe a coin should never be cleaned.

The reasoning behind this is because you are removing the character of that coin. Almost as though you are erasing the history behind it.

But for the sake of argument, let’s say you want to clean your find.

First, wipe away any loose dirt you can. It is best to run the coin under warm water then gently try to remove any dirt with a microfiber cloth. A paper towel can be used if you don’t have a microfiber towel.

Vinegar and Distilled Water

This next step is for old coins, but can be used on any coin, and requires vinegar and distilled water.

Pour a cup of white vinegar into a bowl.

Next, drop your coins in the vinegar and let them soak for a few minutes. If you did the previous step, rinsing the coins first, then you won’t have to soak your coins for so long.

Some will argue that rubbing a coin, even while cleaning is a sin. But, they’re your coins and if you want to give them a little scrub now is the time.

Take a small soft bristled brush, like a bottle cleaner, and gently scrub your coins while in the vinegar.

After you soak and scrubbed your coins, you’ll want to rinse them off with distilled water only. It protects the coins from any chemicals in other types of water.

Here is some important information regarding handling coins, it is always best to handle your coins from the outer edge. Avoid touching the obverse and reverse.

After cleaning, you’ll want to handle your coins with caution and prevent any future damage.

If you really want to protect your coins as much as possible, then invest in a high-quality binder with individual slots to hold coins. Or, put them in individually labeled coin holders.

The worst thing you could do to your new found coins is throw them in a coin jar only to end up more damaged.

Is Coin Hunting Profitable?

Depends on your definition of profitable. What price can you put on creating memories with friends and families or by yourself? The answer is invaluable.

On the other hand, speaking actual money wise the answer is yes. Coin hunting is profitable. Remember, the denomination on a coin never changes. You will never find a lesser amount than what you pull out the water. Only higher.

The value is only higher if the coin is rare and valuable. There is plenty of information on what coins are valuable, including what makes them valuable such as errors.

You’ll be creating memories on the high end, and some spare change on the low end. Either way, coin hunting will be fun and you can have some extra money in your pocket at the end of the day.


Hope this article has given you all the answers to your questions that will get you started into this activity properly and hopefully come up with more valuable coins …

… Finally, you really should check this Magnet Fishing Ultimate Guide for Beginners! I include everything you need to know there!

About the Author

Carissa Harmer

Carissa is the huge metal detecting enthusiast that loves collecting coins. She is also highly interested in other treasure hunting activities like magnet fishing and gold prospecting/panning.