Disassemble a Transformer Easily!


Introduction: Disassemble a Transformer Easily!

About: I'm an 18 year old Electronics enthusiast. I have completed five semesters of schooling at Minnesota State University in Mankato. I'm pursuing a degree in Electrical Engineering. I like Arduino boards, C-pro...
Use a putty knife to take apart those stubborn transformers and get to the magnet wire inside!
You'll need:
  • A putty knife
  • A hammer or wooden mallet. (Anything with a good amount of weight to force the putty knife in between the ferrite sheets.)
  • a transformer to take apart! (quite obvious!)
Subscribe! My next instructable will show you how to use your newly found magnet wire to make a relay!
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Thanks for watching!



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    well, it says the video is private.

    is a ferrite necassary in a transfromer

    hi this is nice video.

    i face a problem. which is i want to make a 10 amps 12-0-12 transformer. so i want a video tutorial. plz help me!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    1 reply

    follow this

    Here are some calculations what I made and from what I build transformers.

    Transformer: 220V - 2x27V 8A
    Input voltage 220 Volts.
    Output voltage two times by 27 Volts 8 Ampere, symmetric for amplifier.
    EI core intersection square is 50 by 48 millimeters.
    Calculated values:
    Input 220 Volts 2.258 Ampere
    443 coils of 1.05 millimeters wire thickness
    Here I use wire of 1 millimeter, because core is big enough and warming at that thickness is low. True reason is that I didn't have wire of 1.05 millimeters. :)
    Output 2 x 27 Volts 8 Ampere
    2 x 54 coils of 1.98 millimeters round to 2 millimeters.
    In assembling I use for output two wires of 2 millimeters at one quill.
    Beginning point of two wires are joined and this is output ground, end point is two outputs of 27 Volts.
    I build that transformer and it works perfectly.

    cool another thing I get to disassemble lol

    hi, this is cool.

    but i face a problem. the problem is i want to make a 10amps 12-012 transformer in my home . so i want a easy video tutorial about this. please help me!!!!!!

    So you're using a putty knife to loosen the potting material? I've heard what you call the bar referred to as an "I" plate. Goes with "E" somewhat better. Old McDonald had a transformer E I E I O. Copper, the poor man's gold! Now all you have to figure out is what to do with all those silicon iron plates you're piling up there.

    6 replies

    I already have a use for them. throw them in the trash! lol, jk. I do need to find a use for them... thanks for the comment!

    You could always wind your own custom transformers. making a winding machine is a classic project. By the looks of your homemade relay you could use one! But for that I'd have used a VSR drill and just chucked the screw. And by chuck I mean place in the drill chuck not toss.

    Slap all the E's back together (same way round this time), poke them back through the coil, and you will have a good electromagnet. 

    Now stick all the I's together as a pole piece, add a little spring & hinge, and you will have the mechanism for a really beefy relay. Just add contacts !

    In order to get to Uni,  please don't touch mains live wires before you arrive !

    Old time electricians used their thumb and forefinger as voltage testers on mains wiring all the time. But they knew what they were doing and grounded their thumbs first etc. so probably best if no one here tries to copy them.

    Recently I have been messing around with transformers some here. I've had bare mains voltage all over my experimenter's desk a lot too. Things were looking a lot like this if not worse:


    That'd be one tough transformer to disassemble huh?

    Another shot of my recently enclosed variac which I think is about the neatest transformer type going:


    Earlier in that project:


    Now I have to figure out a really tiny transformer for an ESR meter project I am working on. I need one with a 20::1 turns ratio and a ferrite core, not a laminated one. I think because of the frequency it will be operating at. These are uncharted waters I'm going into for me.


    My oscillator works good but I'm a little sketchy about this whole transformer deal. Oh well I guess this is how we all become familiar with things.

    lol, I have a huge collection of these too. There must be some great project we can make with them ?

    Thanx for your instructable!

    I was actually trying to tear apart a transformer recently but I gave up.

    I have one question though:

    Of course this is a material with a high magnetic permeability, but is it any good for use as a motor or generator core? I read somewhere laminated STEEL was good choice.

    There is a chart in wikipedia listing various properties, I would like an explaination based on it so I learn stuff too



    If yout want disassembly Ferrite (SMPS) Transformers I have 2 solution
    1. Long time waiting but safe - put transformer to vessel of acetone for 6 - 8 hours then glue make soft and easy to remove it
    2. Short but risky - Put transformer to hot oven (150'C) to few minutes then should easly to disassembly

    Not to be a total jerk, but it's not ferrite; it's just laminated iron strips. ^^

    2 replies

    ahh. I see. Aren't there some transformers that use ferrite?

    Yes; Iron laminated cores are used at lower frequencies, typically around 50-60 khz. Ferrite cores can be used at a much wider range of frequencies: some 1khz to hundreds of thousands of KHZ. A flyback transformer uses a ferrite core. Most wall adapters use iron core transformers, like the one you're tearing apart!