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Thread: Zircon And Other Stud Finders

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia
    Posts
    103

    Question Zircon And Other Stud Finders

    .... After reading this thread http://familywoodworking.org/forums/showthread.php?t=1466


    I felt I should share this post with everyone.


    Zircon And Other Stud Finders


    .... I wanted to put up some shelving on a given wall the other night. Over an hour later, I hadn't got past trying to find two of four studs in the wall. The bottom half of the wall is particleboard and the top half is sheet rock. I finally established a ROUGH line on one side of one of the studs. On the other side of the stud I could NOT establish consistent repeatable mark(s). Matter of fact, I now have a whole wall full of marks that I cannot draw a straight, vertical line down on the other side of this stud. I have two Zircon units that I was using and replaced the batteries in both (Studsensor 4 and the Triscanner). The Studsensor 4, which I think is slightly more sensitive than the Triscanner, have some differences between them. For the most part I could NOT establish a good repeatable mark(s), some would be 1/4 to 1/2 from the first original mark and some did repeat but NOT enough to feel confident enough about to draw a second straight vertical line on the other side of this stud. I did try using a piece of paper under the scanner and that did help in a smother operation, especially on the particleboard, but didn't seem to help with repeatability. I talked with the manufacturer ZIRCON and the bottom line there was to try a thicker slide like the backing of a (pad of paper [the cardboard]) which is a little thicker than what I used (piece of paper) and I will try that. The question that begs an answer now is - Is there anyone who has had the same experiences or frustration that I now share?

    Thanks in advance

    Boyd


    .... Update: I also recently purchased the STANLEY IntelliSensor and though I did not go to the same extent in comparing I got the same results.

    .
    Thinking about a project without ACTION is just DAY DREAMING .

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia
    Posts
    103

    Unhappy

    .... I went ahead and tried the Mfg's (ZIRCON) suggestion with the heavier piece of cardboard under the unit as I scanned. It did seem to improve it's performance, somewhat, but nothing to write home about.
    .... What I did to find the TRUE stud position is I used a plywood blade set to a depth of 1/2 on my circular saw and scored the wall horizontally about where I figured the stud should be and compared the penciled marks from before. A STANLEY variable adjustable hand held square with a very thin knife-like blade was used to probe the saw slot on both sides of the stud and marked it with a heavy long black mark on both sides of the stud and with a tiny black mark as it's center. Here are the results (see pics)










    .



    Quote Originally Posted by Boyd Gathwright View Post
    .... After reading this thread http://familywoodworking.org/forums/showthread.php?t=1466


    I felt I should share this post with everyone.


    Zircon And Other Stud Finders


    .... I wanted to put up some shelving on a given wall the other night. Over an hour later, I hadn't got past trying to find two of four studs in the wall. The bottom half of the wall is particleboard and the top half is sheet rock. I finally established a ROUGH line on one side of one of the studs. On the other side of the stud I could NOT establish consistent repeatable mark(s). Matter of fact, I now have a whole wall full of marks that I cannot draw a straight, vertical line down on the other side of this stud. I have two Zircon units that I was using and replaced the batteries in both (Studsensor 4 and the Triscanner). The Studsensor 4, which I think is slightly more sensitive than the Triscanner, have some differences between them. For the most part I could NOT establish a good repeatable mark(s), some would be 1/4 to 1/2 from the first original mark and some did repeat but NOT enough to feel confident enough about to draw a second straight vertical line on the other side of this stud. I did try using a piece of paper under the scanner and that did help in a smother operation, especially on the particleboard, but didn't seem to help with repeatability. I talked with the manufacturer ZIRCON and the bottom line there was to try a thicker slide like the backing of a (pad of paper [the cardboard]) which is a little thicker than what I used (piece of paper) and I will try that. The question that begs an answer now is - Is there anyone who has had the same experiences or frustration that I now share?

    Thanks in advance

    Boyd


    .... Update: I also recently purchased the STANLEY IntelliSensor and though I did not go to the same extent in comparing I got the same results.


    .
    Thinking about a project without ACTION is just DAY DREAMING .

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    The Heart of Dixie
    Posts
    4,265
    Funny, I just used the Zircon yesterday and I almost threw it as hard as I could on the concrete garage floor. Useless piece of junk!
    God grant me the senility to forget the people I never liked anyway,
    the good fortune to run into the ones I do,
    and the eyesight to tell the difference.


    Kudzu Craft Lightweight Skin on frame Kayaks.
    Custom built boats and Kits

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Placitas, NM in the foothills of the Sandia Mt
    Posts
    688
    I have the same experience with that useless piece of cr**.

    Here's another entry for your list of what tools really do:

    STUD FINDER - a prep tool for painting. Leads the user to make so many marks on the wall trying to find a stud that he must paint the wall.


    Frankly, I have better luck tapping the wall with a finger.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    ozarks
    Posts
    4,992
    in drywall try a "hatpin" one of those "t" shaped pins woman used to use to hold their hat in place.......tap with a finger, hammer or the closest childs head `till you`re close then probe with the hatpin....they actually poke through drywall fairly easily.....tod
    [SIZE="1"] associated with several importers and manufacturers.[/SIZE]

  6. #6
    Steve Clardy Guest
    I've had the cheap $20.00 stud finder that Sears sells for about 5 years now.
    It has not let me down. It will pinpoint a stud every time.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Wake Forest, NC
    Posts
    292
    I have a $50 Zircon. Don't know the model, but it has deep scan and will scan for electrical. It is supposed to show you the edge and center of a stud so that does help, but like you, I have had it be completely wrong. I would say it is accurate 75 percent of the time. I have seen it do wierd things. It works well enough that I forget to test before committing to the results it gives.

    One thing I have found, making sure you are not starting near a stud and are on the same density of material you are scanning helps some.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    ABQ NM
    Posts
    29,089
    I finally had to quit using my stud finder because everytime I was in the same room with it, all it did was point to ME.

    It is obviously faulty. Just ask LOML.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

    workingwoods.com

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Mountain Home, Arkansas
    Posts
    11,697
    I have a Stanley, bought at Wal-Mart. Don't remember the price. But if I bought it, you know it wasn't very expensive.
    Very reliable and easy to use.

  10. #10
    Steve Clardy Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by Vaughn McMillan View Post
    I finally had to quit using my stud finder because everytime I was in the same room with it, all it did was point to ME.

    It is obviously faulty. Just ask LOML.




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