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Stud Finder

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  • Stud Finder

    For the wife says it's me so to get on topic......

    I am intrigued with the new electronic stud finders out there.

    I never had luck with the tapping of the wall for a solid VS hollow tone.
    I have been successful using a small brad and making a lot of holes.
    I have a 1990 vintage Zircon stud finder that's 60% accurate.

    Looking at the new breed of units I am interested in the units that show the entire stud and
    indicate its center.

    I have looked at the Franklin 710, Zircon I520, Ryobi TK4 and others.

    Searching reviews and "who makes the best one" I have found conflicting

    Prices run from a few dollars to over eighty dollars.

    Other than keeping my magic brad and making holes, is there a
    consensus here as to the most popular and best operating stud sensor?

    Cactus Man

  • #2
    Re: Stud Finder

    I bought a model that was Zircon a few years ago, and it does a better job than my earlier Zircon base models do, (my big problem is the density of plaster is greater than wood, and even if there is a wood stud back there, it can not see it as there is a very dense layer over the top of it
    but the ones that can detect metal and electricity can help,

    I personally am not familiar with any of the models you posted, sorry I can not be of any real help in your decision,

    I alway thought a pair of X ray vision glasses would be helpful,
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    • #3
      Re: Stud Finder

      I have this one:

      Bosch GMS120 Digital Multi-Scanner -

      Does an excellent job but 90% of my stud finds are by using a dime size magnet and locating a screw or nail below the paint.


      • #4
        Re: Stud Finder

        I have the original Zircon, still works. I also have a newer Zircon (don't remember the model), and a Stanley which detects metal pipe and conduit and also energized wires. I have used both occasionally, haven't had much use for them around the house, but both have worked OK. When I have had call to need one I have used both trying to determine which one is better. Haven't seen much difference in stud detection, both have been pretty good at finding the edges of a stud.
        "It's a table saw, do you know where your fingers are?" Bob D. 2006


        1/20/2017 - The Beginning of a new Error


        • #5
          Re: Stud Finder

          We use a Maine Coon cat. You turn it sideways and rub it on the wall. When it crosses a stud it will "Meow!".

          Works every time.


          • #6
            Re: Stud Finder

            a strong telescoping magnet fully extended will even find the staples behind plaster walls.

            i also have the roybi and rarely use it. my magnet is allways dead on.

            i also am the drywall whisperer. i can feel and hear the nail spots with my finger 90% of the time. takes a little practice and rubbing your fingers accross the drywall will listen for the spot of mud.

            phoebe it is


            • #7
              Re: Stud Finder

              Zircon 58229 TriScanner Pro SL - Electronic Stud and Metal Locator -

              this is what i use. works for me on both drywall and plaster.


              • #8
                Re: Stud Finder

                To close the discussion..I did purchase the Zircon I520.

                Yesterday I ran around in every room of our 1966 vintage house with the I520
                and was relieved to determine all interior walls had 2x4 construction.

                The I520 does work quite well with minimal errors

                Cactus Man


                • #9
                  Re: Stud Finder

                  Apply the Laser technique to find any stud in wall rather than mingling with solid and hollow tones. The task won’t be messy and it’s in your budget too. Why don’t you try Black & Deckers Bulls Eye which utilizes laser tech and stud finder. It is priced at 70 $. Since you have tried Zircon, just go for this and I personally believe you will be satisfied in your task


                  • #10
                    Re: Stud Finder


                    I picked up one of these at the Hilti store. Also have an outdated Zircon.


                    • #11
                      Re: Stud Finder

                      This is the one I have.

                      Click image for larger version

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                      Had it for years, still going on strong. Good and rugged - takes a beating. Accuracy is very good through most wallboard materials. The AC field detector is quite a handy feature. I would recommend this model.
                      "Good enough" isn't really "good"...


                      • #12
                        Re: Stud Finder

                        I have an older Ryobi ESTP004 which I bought around 2004 or 5. Works pretty well for me, finds metal and electrical wires as well as "wood"... and "deep wood". The latter setting seems to work fairly well for most walls in my 1887-built home.

                        I've only had two problems with locating studs... one is where there were 3/4 boards directly under the plaster (it had been an outside wall at one time) and another where part of the ceiling had pulled away and the original builder had used some kind of anchor... that left a gap between the dry wall and the floor joists.

                        Only problem for me is that I'm pretty well oriented around "AA" and "AAA" batteries and this thing takes a 9-Volt. I only have three tools that use 9-Volt batteries and it seems they are always dead or weak on those rare occasions that I use them.



                        • #13
                          Re: Stud Finder

                          If you are still looking for a stud finder, I am available. Oh, I thought you were trying to find a stud. Sorry.


                          • #14
                            Re: Stud Finder

                            I've had 3 zircons. The first one (black) was ok, but died after many years. The other ones (yellow), I found they didn't work too well. I have a CH Hanson magnetic one now, $10. Smaller, no battery, and more reliable. Like it much better.