Does anyone know of a reliable stud, metal & AC detector? I have both a
Draper and a Meet MS-68 5 in 1, both of which I find inaccurate. The old
Draper is the better, although the Meet cost more. I don't mind paying more
if I can find an instrument I can trust.
I bought a screwfix detector a few years ago. The metal/ live electrical
part worked fine but the stud detector required some fiddling to set up
along with a certain amount of practice to develop a different technique,
and confidence, in what it is telling you.
I would assume that it is relatively easy to pick up disturbances created by
metal/ ac currents but a lot more difficult to detect those caused by wood/
plastic and similar non-magnetic materials. Therefore I would doubt if there
are any detectors available at a DIY price that will give you the same sort
of positive result you get with metal/ ac current with wooden stud.
Have a practice. You can hear where the studding is approximately by
tapping, then check if you're obtaining confirmatory results with the
detector. I think you'll soon see some correlation between the two.
Best of luck.
I think you're right in what you are saying. I'm sure that there is no
infallible device for either studs or AC. For instance, I built a new wall
between my kitchen & dining room, in order to increase the size of my
kitchen. At the time, I added new ring wiring with many extra sockets
socket outlets, all done to a high standard. When I test the wall for AC
using my Meet meter. 50% of the wall appears live, even through the
thickness of a bureau. Fortunately, I made a plan of the wiring before I
fixed the plasterboard.
I also installed new sockets for my computer etc in the corner of my dining
room. The wiring is vertically downwards from upstairs, although the Meet
instrument is unable to locate it within +/- 1 metre. The Draper meter,
although cheaper and older, is much more accurate.
I think the best way of finding studs may be to stick a sharp pointed tool
into the wall, provided you know where the wiring is first. Fortunately,
I've never drilled through electrical wiring, although I did manage to screw
into a cold water pipe once!
I think the only answer is a gamma ray scan of the wall, if only it were
I've got a couple of them and I agree - they are all rubbish.
I usually go by looking at where power poits & switches are, assuming that
cables run straight up/down, then checking with the detector as a back up.
Only been caught twice in two years.
Dave - The Medway Handyman
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