(How) Do divining rods work?

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BrainEater

Senior member
Apr 20, 2016
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Dont forget Thorium Reactors.
Ease down Ripley.

While Thorium reactors are not the magical energy pancea popular media would make them out to be ,
They are definitely not 'magic' in any way....not the same imaginary ballpark as 'dowsing rods'.

:)
 

SAAA

Senior member
May 14, 2014
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I think he meant to say fusion reactors, the "cold" kind in particular. Way too many working examples on YT: it must be true! ;)

PS: let's all praise the Thorium God! It will rise above the filty Uranium scum that will last just 50 years more!?
 
Nov 1, 2011
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years and years and years and years ago, I was arguing a point of science with a man of faith. he eventually ran out of ideas and said "you know, i wouldn't care if you are right. you're such a smug jerk about the way you say things that I would rather be wrong than agree with you"

reading this thread, I can see what he meant.
 
Jun 17, 2005
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years and years and years and years ago, I was arguing a point of science with a man of faith. he eventually ran out of ideas and said "you know, i wouldn't care if you are right. you're such a smug jerk about the way you say things that I would rather be wrong than agree with you"

reading this thread, I can see what he meant.
You should have asked him to carefully consider his words and the idea of hubris and think about which one of you is really being smug.

It is not smug to be confident in your conclusions when you have the evidence to back up your claim. It is smug to state that you know are right even when the evidence contradicts you.
 
Jan 4, 2001
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years and years and years and years ago, I was arguing a point of science with a man of faith. he eventually ran out of ideas and said "you know, i wouldn't care if you are right. you're such a smug jerk about the way you say things that I would rather be wrong than agree with you"

reading this thread, I can see what he meant.
You should have asked him to carefully consider his words and the idea of hubris and think about which one of you is really being smug.

It is not smug to be confident in your conclusions when you have the evidence to back up your claim. It is smug to state that you know are right even when the evidence contradicts you.
And some people are just smug about everything, so that's also a possibility.


However, if someone comes to you and says they believe leprechauns control the government, and tells you how he saw them and believes it's undeniably true, and recommends action to remove them from office, how do you address that? Do you counter it as a perfectly rational idea and carefully illustrate why the person may in fact wish to reconsider their belief?
Or do you hesitate to even get involved with something like that?


Divining rods are in the same realm as leprechaun legislators. There are grandiose claims of their absolutely incredible versatility and effectiveness, yet this simple tool isn't in widespread use, and as soon as a proper testing environment is created, all repeatability and reliability miraculously vanish.
It's XKCD's Economic Argument yet again.
 

BrainEater

Senior member
Apr 20, 2016
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There's no need to be smug , or angry , or whatever.

This is not a discussion about attitude.It's about dispelling BS.
----------

As I said earlier , please try it for yourself.I have.It Fails.
 
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Nov 3, 2008
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Almost 5 years and this thread still haunts "Highly Technical"

Amazing.....
 
Nov 30, 2012
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Well thanks for resurrecting it, Victor Frankenstein!

This must be the longest running "necro" on here.
 

Joepublic2

Golden Member
Jan 22, 2005
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It doesn't work. Guy is a bullshit artist of some sort or another, and pretty good at it if he's able to get legit companies to pay for his "service".
 
Oct 9, 2002
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It doesn't work. Guy is a bullshit artist of some sort or another, and pretty good at it if he's able to get legit companies to pay for his "service".
Several restaurants around here have little reflective things stuck at the drive thru window and entrances. It's supposed to deter flies from entering on the same principle as hanging a clear plastic bag of water. There's actually no "principle" because it doesn't work. Somehow, these major restaurant chains are duped into buying something that simply doesn't do what it claims to do.

Perhaps it's like keyboards that include obligatory wrist rests, even though these don't actually reduce RSIs. The designer of the Logitech G15 clearly designed it to look "right" without the wrist rest. But, if the keyboard manufacturer neglected to include one, someone with carpal tunnel will blame the keyboard manufacturer. "LOOK! They're the only ones that didn't include a wrist rest and I got carpal tunnel from using their keyboard!" So they include something with no practical purpose or function.
 

freddyo

Junior Member
Sep 5, 2016
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The other day at work, we needed to find several buried empty 4 inch PCV conduits which go between several of our buildings on our complex.

One of the structural engineers who was assigned to the project had these 2 L shaped rods which he called divining rods. he held them loosely in each hand, and then would walk a straight line, and when he walked over top of this empty conduit they would turn and straighten pointing opposite parallel directions showing the lay of these underground conduits.

He reliably located several underground gas lines, water lines, sewage pipes, and the empty counduits we were looking for, and i know he wasnt cheating, because, this guy was only ever here a few times before... no blueprints, no outside knowledge, some of these things were installed 15 years ago.

it ovbiously worked, as we found that where he marked the location, he was within inches of the spot.

Looking it up on the internet, all i can find is a bunch of spiritual mumbo jumbo... it isnt magnetism, as PVC isnt magnetic. How are these rods able to locate such underground features so reliably.
 

freddyo

Junior Member
Sep 5, 2016
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The other day at work, we needed to find several buried empty 4 inch PCV conduits which go between several of our buildings on our complex.

One of the structural engineers who was assigned to the project had these 2 L shaped rods which he called divining rods. he held them loosely in each hand, and then would walk a straight line, and when he walked over top of this empty conduit they would turn and straighten pointing opposite parallel directions showing the lay of these underground conduits.

He reliably located several underground gas lines, water lines, sewage pipes, and the empty counduits we were looking for, and i know he wasnt cheating, because, this guy was only ever here a few times before... no blueprints, no outside knowledge, some of these things were installed 15 years ago.

it ovbiously worked, as we found that where he marked the location, he was within inches of the spot.

Looking it up on the internet, all i can find is a bunch of spiritual mumbo jumbo... it isnt magnetism, as PVC isnt magnetic. How are these rods able to locate such underground features so reliably.
Yes they do work. I have a set and use them all the time. People need to see it in person and when they do they will see that its true. I put mine in the hands of people all the time and they work.
 
Oct 10, 1999
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Yes they do work. I have a set and use them all the time. People need to see it in person and when they do they will see that its true. I put mine in the hands of people all the time and they work.
No, they don't.
 
Oct 9, 2002
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Yes they do work. I have a set and use them all the time. People need to see it in person and when they do they will see that its true. I put mine in the hands of people all the time and they work.
This anecdote changes EVERYTHING! :rolleyes:

Go claim your million dollars, freddyo! Do it before one of your trained pupils does.
 
May 24, 2003
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www.uovalor.com
For fun I made some (does type of material matter? I just used copper I had lying around) and I can see how people would think they work. As you walk they sometimes go together, because, gravity. You might slightly move your hands enough while walking and it makes them cross. They happened to cross right over where my sewer line is. I then tried it again and they crossed at a random spot I know there are no utilities.

Then I went back upstairs and there was a guy in a white robe at my door, he looked almost angelic. I went to answer and he introduced himself as Judah and I noticed he was holding a can of spray paint that had 7 nozzles. Never seen that before. He said he was here for a cable locate and just started spraying away in my yard, each nozzle had a different colour for each utility. He had a pet lion following him around. Interesting guy.
 
Oct 10, 1999
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For fun I made some (does type of material matter? I just used copper I had lying around) and I can see how people would think they work. As you walk they sometimes go together, because, gravity. You might slightly move your hands enough while walking and it makes them cross. They happened to cross right over where my sewer line is. I then tried it again and they crossed at a random spot I know there are no utilities.

Then I went back upstairs and there was a guy in a white robe at my door, he looked almost angelic. I went to answer and he introduced himself as Judah and I noticed he was holding a can of spray paint that had 7 nozzles. Never seen that before. He said he was here for a cable locate and just started spraying away in my yard, each nozzle had a different colour for each utility. He had a pet lion following him around. Interesting guy.
That asshole owes me $5!


No profanity in the technical forums
Markfw900
 
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Oct 9, 2002
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I have a vague recollection of watching a TV show episode as a kid where a young boy went "dowsing" (dousing? dausing?) by holding a Y-shaped stick in both hands while walking through a field with his eyes closed. Where it drops is where he was supposed to dig for water.

I remember it was on Nick-at-Nite in the '80s. Certainly a sixties show. Probably black-and-white. I don't remember if the kid found water or if a well was even dug, but I think dowsing was a major plot point in the episode.

Pretty sure it was one of these:
- Andy Griffith
- Lassie
- Dennis the Menace

Anyone else remember?
 
Nov 30, 2012
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I made a special meter that detects magnetic disturbances specifically tuned for water. I call it a soap box necro unit 5000.
 

flhiker

Junior Member
Nov 10, 2016
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I am new here and found this forum by searching the answer to the original post. How ever I have to give my experience with divining rods and tell you how you can see for yourself.

I went to work for a maintenance company that repaired plumbing and sprinkler systems One of my jobs was locating sprinkler line that had been out of service for years. I Dug many holes trying to find them. My boss showed up and used his home made rods and accurately located all of the lines with very little effort.

You don't have to believe any of this. But if you are willing to sacrifice 2 wire clothes hangers. You can see for yourself if they work.

You will need to cut the hanger so that you end up with a "L" shape
measuring 14 in x 4 in. Now you will need to hold these rods one in each hand And how you hold them matters. You hold them so the long end Points away from you and short end in your hand points downward. Rest the end of the rods on each pinky and use your thumb to lightly press it against your 3 fingers. Hold them so they can swing freely. With rods pointing away from you hold them level and around 6 in apart. Now walk over a sprinkler line, sewer drain line, or just stretch a garden hose across the lawn. As you walk up to your hose the rods will begin to swing inward and start to cross each other. That cross will be when It Is over the hose. If you continue to walk theY will Continue until they point in the opposite of when you started.

I would love to hear how your test works out. I hope I was able to described this okay.
 
Oct 9, 2002
26,647
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I am new here and found this forum by searching the answer to the original post. How ever I have to give my experience with divining rods and tell you how you can see for yourself.

I went to work for a maintenance company that repaired plumbing and sprinkler systems One of my jobs was locating sprinkler line that had been out of service for years. I Dug many holes trying to find them. My boss showed up and used his home made rods and accurately located all of the lines with very little effort.

You don't have to believe any of this. But if you are willing to sacrifice 2 wire clothes hangers. You can see for yourself if they work.

You will need to cut the hanger so that you end up with a "L" shape
measuring 14 in x 4 in. Now you will need to hold these rods one in each hand And how you hold them matters. You hold them so the long end Points away from you and short end in your hand points downward. Rest the end of the rods on each pinky and use your thumb to lightly press it against your 3 fingers. Hold them so they can swing freely. With rods pointing away from you hold them level and around 6 in apart. Now walk over a sprinkler line, sewer drain line, or just stretch a garden hose across the lawn. As you walk up to your hose the rods will begin to swing inward and start to cross each other. That cross will be when It Is over the hose. If you continue to walk theY will Continue until they point in the opposite of when you started.

I would love to hear how your test works out. I hope I was able to described this okay.
Your boss could win $1m if he can demonstrate this skill in a controlled test.
 
Nov 21, 2001
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I have an explanation of why it "works" :D
I have dug around utilities for 30 years. I have found unlocated pipes in the ground with quite a bit of success based on my experiences. Over the thousands of hours and many broken pipes and mislocated pipes, crossing over and under utilities I have developed a keen sense of where a ditch was dug in the past.
All of this is reinforced by the locate marks I have seen, tens of thousands of times over. Paint says a pipe is there, and my brain reinforces the other clues I see. Over and over again.
Where the average person sees nothing, I can point out a ditch line by the vaguest of clues. What you would think is nothing is quite a bit of information for me.
I think some people have a knack for these clues, but then attribute it to the dowsing. Easy enough for the subconscious to manipulate the rods based on those inputs.
As far as the well drilling BS, they don't call it a water table for nothing. :p
 

LoveMachine

Senior member
May 8, 2012
491
0
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I am new here and found this forum by searching the answer to the original post. How ever I have to give my experience with divining rods and tell you how you can see for yourself.
I was just thinking it had been a couple of months since we've seen the 87th iteration of this exact same post from a new member who found the thread from a search and didn't bother to read any of the previous comments. This one, surely, will settle the debate once and for all.
 

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