Full Member
Mar 27, 2015
South West
Primary Interest:
Relic Hunting
Hey everyone,
Hoping ya'll can help me understand the difference between a meteorite and natural iron. I doubt that I'm lucky enough to have found an actual meteorite but how does one tell without being able to cut it in half to look at the internal structure?

I've attached images of a "rock" that I found in Arizona. The rock I have feels heavy, about 26 grams and only 1" in diameter. It IS magnetic and you can see red-ish color speckling the surface that I suspect is rust. Unfortunately I don't recall where exactly the rock was found but most likely in the mountains.

I've found many photos online of supposed meteors and I've always wondered to myself if they really are from outer space or just a natural occurring stone.

Mr. Waffles


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Silver Member
Jul 8, 2007
The Motor City
🏆 Honorable Mentions:
Detector(s) used
Extended Sensory Perception, L-rod, Y-rod, pendulum, angle rods, wand.
White's MXT, Garrett Ultra GTA 500, AT Gold, SCUBA Detector Pro Headhunter, Tesoro Sidewinder, Stingray, 2 box-TF900, Fisher TW-6
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
Earth iron and meteoritic iron have different oxygen isotopes to start with, but the metal detector doesn't know this.
Neither does a streak plate, magnet or specific gravity scale. The gravity scale is somewhat analogous to a metal detector's conductivity response on the meter, sometimes you get a gold ring find that read as a pull-tab. Likewise, there are lots of meteorites that fall into the same specific gravity as earth rocks. They are all good tools to help somewhat but unless you get to a recent fall and see dark, out of place looking rocks on a hard surface or frozen lake, you are probably gonna want to get anything your detector finds cut, tested, verified and certified, especially if you are detecting in a known strewn field. Research where strewn fields exist, get permission to search if needed. This will help get you into an area that will give you a better chance of finding a meteorite vs. just wandering around. Maybe try and find someone such as an astronomy/physics type person at a local college/university that may be able to help ID your find scientifically. I'm not sure on the costs for testing at a certified lab.
Jon 8-) :cat::occasion14: :headbang:

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