A metal sputtering source suitable for laboratory production of metal hydrides is described. Sputtering from pure nickel or iron in an Ar/H2 discharge is analyzed at low resolution. High resolution laser excitation and dispersed fluorescence spectra of NiH have also been recorded. The source has been designed to operate with a ferromagnetic circuit for Zeeman spectroscopy. Signals from the source are strong enough to record dispersed fluorescence from NiH by Fourier transform interferometry in magnetic fields up to 1 T. We establish that FeH can also be formed in this source.